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Who records and mixes in the same space? Studio Headphones
Old 15th September 2011
  #1
Who records and mixes in the same space?

More specifically, who tracks drums in the same space as they mix?
My space is approx. 4.5m x 7m and it's reasonably well treated.
I do it all in one space, with good results for recording vocals (in a portable 3 sided booth). When it comes to drums, it's loud but works out well.
I'm considering cutting the space in half so that I can isolate drums, but am concerned about the acoustics of a potentially smaller space that will need considerable treatment, and the reduced control room size.

Do your clients get a better experience tracking in separate rooms or combined spaces?

Any thoughts?
Old 15th September 2011
  #2
Gear Head
 
saguinus_gr's Avatar
 

I've tried both, and the best result's are when i could really hear what's going to tape while being in another room.
It's hard to tell if the snare sounds good if he is right next to you pounding away...
Old 15th September 2011
  #3
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Granny Gremlin's Avatar
 

I have previously, and when my new build is done, will be doing so again.

I would not subdivide your space in any permanant/non-movable way as it isn't that large to begin with. Instead I would advise getting some heavy curtains or movable panels to help block the live drum sound from the engineer during tracking (maybe your portable booth will work for this purpose). And/or, what I have always done: track drums using closed back over the ear cans with really good isolation. Some in-ears (I use Etymotics) are also good for this.


Quote:
Originally Posted by saguinus_gr View Post
I've tried both, and the best result's are when i could really hear what's going to tape while being in another room.
It's hard to tell if the snare sounds good if he is right next to you pounding away...
Yes, that is the main drawback to the one-room studio, however it's pretty easy to do a short soundcheck recording. Once you know the room it gets even easier.
Old 15th September 2011
  #4
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netomtz88's Avatar
 

This is a really good advice I was my room space is like 11 feet by 10 and I think I'll do the same to record drums, I think I saw this website called audimute or something like that and they sell absorption sheets.
Old 16th September 2011
  #5
Hi Granny

Yep, I'm pretty familiar with my room. My drum kit is set up about 2.5m away from where I sit.

I've been thinking about the dampening panels as another option. I'm a bit dubious about building isolation walls only to maybe find it's not much better. I love tracking with a vocalist nearby we can quickly and easily discuss phrasing and pitch etc, more difficult to do that when in another room. I have worked and recorded in bigger studios and the close connection with an artist, be it vocalist or bass player, is really valuable to get that great take.

Liking the moveable baffle panel idea.
Old 16th September 2011
  #6
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Sofa King's Avatar
 

I mix in the main room, I have two iso areas for amps and vocals.
been doing business this way for almost 15 years.

best,
Sean
Old 16th September 2011
  #7
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Piedpiper's Avatar
re: rooms, bigger is better so I wouldn't recommend dividing it up. separate is a convenience, not a necessity.

...and love them Etymotics... but as well as they isolate, it still ain't enough... but the sound the mics capture is more important than your ability to hear it as it goes to tape...
Old 16th September 2011
  #8
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Piedpiper View Post
re: rooms, bigger is better so I wouldn't recommend dividing it up. separate is a convenience, not a necessity.
Couldn't agree more! Maybe build some shorty gobos or even tall ones to put between you (console) and drums. Short ones would probably be best so you ae taking advantage of the room somewhat. But in my experience with same room drum tracking it was extremely helpfull to have 3 foot tall mini gobos between my ears and the kick and snare. Helps keep the kick tamed in smaller rooms too. You can even add heavy absorption to the sides that will face the kick to really set it down in the room.
Old 16th September 2011
  #9
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mdoelger's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by saguinus_gr View Post
I've tried both, and the best result's are when i could really hear what's going to tape while being in another room.
It's hard to tell if the snare sounds good if he is right next to you pounding away...
Simple trick...listen to the drums with a 1 sceound delay on the drum bus, while adjusting the sound.
Old 16th September 2011
  #10
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I have been working in one room for a few years now and even though I am a media composer so am recording myself most of the time,I dont like it.
I would rather have to press record and run to another room and jump on the kit than have the kit in the room when I mix.
Also it took me months to get an electric guitar sound when it should have taken hours
I can only ballpark a sound in the headphones and once the creativity is happening and the parts are getting written and tracked,I am not listening as an engineer anymore.
I cant wait for my new studio,I am well over the one room thing
Old 16th September 2011
  #11
SRS
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I have several rooms setup with drums in the same room as recording gear. Convenient and effective. I do some mixing as well, and the kit has minimal effect on the acoustics. You may wish to throw a medium thick blanket or heavy sheet over the kit while mixing or critical listening to help dampen and subdue the heads, shells and cymbal resonances.

Keep the room big, but use gobos if they might help you out for isolation purposes.
Old 16th September 2011
  #12
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Funny Cat's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdoelger View Post
Simple trick...listen to the drums with a 1 sceound delay on the drum bus, while adjusting the sound.

This is cool. Please expound a little. You've got my attention.


Great thread by the way.
Old 16th September 2011
  #13
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E.rOk.stA's Avatar
 

I track vox in the same room I mix in but it's treated well (traps, diffusers, etc.) so it actually sounds excellent. I just use headphones along with the vocalist while tracking.

My live room is under construction but even when it's done I think I will still track vox in here occasionally.
Old 16th September 2011
  #14
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ASC Studio Traps would be your friend in this situation, both for tracking and for mixing.

Cheers,

Otto
Old 16th September 2011
  #15
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DoctorG's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by E.rOk.stA View Post
I track vox in the same room I mix in but it's treated well (traps, diffusers, etc.) so it actually sounds excellent. I just use headphones along with the vocalist while tracking.
+1, doing the same here. I was using a laptop with a noisy fan but recently invested in a dead silent workstation as it was a problem. I've also re-amped guitar in the room - this could benefit from the 1 second delay trick while micing the cab.
Old 16th September 2011
  #16
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DITN's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by sHOWpONY View Post
More specifically, who tracks drums in the same space as they mix?
My space is approx. 4.5m x 7m and it's reasonably well treated.
I do it all in one space, with good results for recording vocals (in a portable 3 sided booth). When it comes to drums, it's loud but works out well.
I'm considering cutting the space in half so that I can isolate drums, but am concerned about the acoustics of a potentially smaller space that will need considerable treatment, and the reduced control room size.

Do your clients get a better experience tracking in separate rooms or combined spaces?

Any thoughts?
See Miloco's The Pool. Seems to work for them, it's one of the best tracking studios in London.

That said I don't think they really use it for mixing, so YMMV with the same setup.
Old 16th September 2011
  #17
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John1982's Avatar
 

I have to do the same in the practice room of my band. Altough it's not ideal, you've got to deal with what you got. Since we have this room for over 10 years, I really used to it. Setting up the drum sound is no big deal anymore. But I think you need to record quit demos to really get a picture of the sound. It's also important to check the phase. I like to get the phase correct on the way in.
When mixing I do also hang a curtain over the drums.
Old 16th September 2011
  #18
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swafford's Avatar
 

I do everything in one room. Since I do a 4 mic set up on drums, do them in mono and use the same basic kit every time (maybe change out the snare, cymbals and/or kick) and never play with smashers, I don't have problems getting the kit to sound good. My room's large enough to separate the elements with pleasant bleed.

I have lot's of other issues, but mixing/engineering in in the same room as tracking doesn't seem to be one of them.
Old 16th September 2011
  #19
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evangelista's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Funny Cat View Post
This is cool. Please expound a little. You've got my attention.


Great thread by the way.


I'll chime in -

You can either insert a delay, or set your record buffer to a very high setting. Either way, you benefit by having the sound come out of your speakers after the actual hit (say, a second or so), making it easier to evaluate.
Old 16th September 2011
  #20
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pdlstl's Avatar
 

Separate room for drums at my place. Can't stand the concussion if the drummer is in the same room. Very fatiguing. Even with isolation headphones.

2¢...
Old 16th September 2011
  #21
I work in a single room for tracking drums and mixing. Just have to set the mics where I think they will go, record, listen, adjust, etc..

Sure I would love a separate room for mixing but then I would just be doing the same thing since I don't have an assistant to move mics while I listen. Would still take a bigger place in a heartbeat if I had the option.

Short of the physical issues, having a bigger acoustic space, not being in the same room with the drums, ect. I don't think there would be much difference to my tracking workflow as I will be listening back to the drums many times while evaluating mic positioning regardless.

Now having an assistant to move mics while I listen in the control room would be fantastic!heh
Old 16th September 2011
  #22
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Funny Cat's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by evangelista View Post
I'll chime in -

You can either insert a delay, or set your record buffer to a very high setting. Either way, you benefit by having the sound come out of your speakers after the actual hit (say, a second or so), making it easier to evaluate.

Thanks for the reply. Although I'm sure this wouldn't work in a small'ish room since you'd get severe feedback with your monitors on, listening to one/several open mics right?

I would think maybe some extreme isolation headphones might do the trick?.....but the caveat, I always find is that auditioning sounds is "less than ideal" in headphones. Especially drums, since the room (even a small room) + air captured by the mics are a huge part of what gives drums their impact and depth.

The fact that the instrument's sound waves would not be hitting air (using headphones) automatically changes the tone of the sound. I've noticed this especially with kick and snare. Dunno...guess I need to experiment with the delay thing and just see how it works.
Old 16th September 2011
  #23
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Piedpiper's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Funny Cat View Post
Thanks for the reply. Although I'm sure this wouldn't work in a small'ish room since you'd get severe feedback with your monitors on, listening to one/several open mics right?

I would think maybe some extreme isolation headphones might do the trick?.....but the caveat, I always find is that auditioning sounds is "less than ideal" in headphones. Especially drums, since the room (even a small room) + air captured by the mics are a huge part of what gives drums their impact and depth.

The fact that the instrument's sound waves would not be hitting air (using headphones) automatically changes the tone of the sound. I've noticed this especially with kick and snare. Dunno...guess I need to experiment with the delay thing and just see how it works.
depends on the headphones... although monitors will always offer a different perspective, good headphones can reproduce a holographic you-are-there experience, albeit a different one. There are relatively few headphones that have accurate response all the way down into kick drum territory but they do exist.
Old 16th September 2011
  #24
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Funny Cat's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Piedpiper View Post
depends on the headphones... although monitors will always offer a different perspective, good headphones can reproduce a holographic you-are-there experience, albeit a different one. There are relatively few headphones that have accurate response all the way down into kick drum territory but they do exist.

Could you recommend some cans that you feel offer a "holographic you-are-there" sound and actually reproduce the overtones a snare or kick would produce? I'm sincerely interested. Thanks!
Old 16th September 2011
  #25
Everything in the same room, one booth for vocals. I usually just tell the drum to play for a couple of minutes, record it, listen back and make adjustments if need be.
Old 16th September 2011
  #26
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Piedpiper's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Funny Cat View Post
Could you recommend some cans that you feel offer a "holographic you-are-there" sound and actually reproduce the overtones a snare or kick would produce? I'm sincerely interested. Thanks!
For neutral accuracy, I have come round after much experimentation to preferring the Denon AH-D7000, or the 5000 or 2000 for less money. I have also heard great things about the Audeze LCD 2 although they are not closed backed, whereas the Denons are. The aforementioned Etymotics are excellent but are a bit lean and bright, but isolate better. One thing I like about the Denons that is all too rare in cans is that they reproduce low bass, and relatively clean that. It is slightly exaggerated but I find this to be more useful than not, in terms of revealing issues that would otherwise be hidden.
Old 16th September 2011
  #27
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hasbeen's Avatar
Same room too with a curtain of sound dampening between.

Like Sean, I spend time with the drummer beforehand recording and listening. Also using headphones I am well acquainted with.

Sent from my HERO200 using Gearslutz.com App
Old 16th September 2011
  #28
I am doing the same... track and mix in the same room. The space is basically a two car garage with pitched ceilings and plenty of room around the board and drums and amps for mic'ing and re-patching when necessary. I love that the space is so malleable for different configurations.
Once you do enough recording and listening back, you'll learn where and how to mic things, where to baffle, and how to get the most out of the open room. Plenty of plexiglass partitions and big thick curtains help. I have several panels of glass from sliding glass doors that I am incorporating by putting them on rolling carts for ease of movement.
Actually, once tracked, the idea is to take the project to a mixing studio.
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