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Recommendations for a hardware De-Essor Equalisers (HW)
Old 31st March 2006
  #1
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limey222's Avatar
 

Recommendations for a hardware De-Essor

I was tracking female vocals last night and had very bad sibilance problems, partially material related, partially the singer. It was almost unbearable while tracking, so my software de-essors couldn't help. I got by by using an old Orban 424A with everything disabled except the de-essor function but I really need to buy something with a little more quality. What are your suggestions?
Old 31st March 2006
  #2
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Doublehelix's Avatar
 

Well, first off, I would try to remove the sibilance at the source by varying mic placement or even choice of mics. By raising the mic to the forehead level or higher and then angling the diaphragm down towards the mouth, you can reduce sibilance significantly. Just make sure you position the pop filter so that they singer continues to sing straight ahead, otherwise, you are just defeating the whole purpose!

Mic choice is also important...some singers just don't sound good through certain mics. Most mics have a presence peak somewhere in their frequency response, and if that matches a sibilant frequency with *that* specific singer...watch out! You kinda need to match the mic to the voice.

A lot of the cheaper crop of LDCs that are popping up lately are also really prone to sibilance.

I did a session recently where we found a mic that worked so well with the singer's voice, but it was just so danged sibilant that we passed and chose something that might not have matched as well, but wasn't anywhere near as sibilant.

That being said, I have an old DBX 963A De-Esser that actually works quite well in an emergency. I keep the settings more on the moderate side to be safe, and then if I have to I will automate the volume profile in my DAW to clean up the rest...

TBH... I really don't use it much any more, much prefering to fix it at the source, and then automating the volume if anything remains.

Over compressing also emphasizes sibilance, so watch out for that...
Old 31st March 2006
  #3
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The De-esser in the Pendulum Quartet or the one in the Empirical Labs Lil Freq.
Joshua
Old 31st March 2006
  #4
Gear Nut
Not a first hand report, but I've told that the SPL model works very well.
Old 31st March 2006
  #5
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robmix's Avatar
Hands down the DBX 902 is the classic hardware de-esser, I still use it over any ITB alternative.
Old 31st March 2006
  #6
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Doublehelix's Avatar
 

Quote:
That being said, I have an old DBX 963A De-Esser that actually works quite well in an emergency. I keep the settings more on the moderate side to be safe, and then if I have to I will automate the volume profile in my DAW to clean up the rest...

Now WHY did I say "963A"??? Sorry, I have a DBX 263A...sorry about that! It is the half space unit.
Old 31st March 2006
  #7
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phelbin's Avatar
 

Placement and so forth...somebody already said it.

Gearwise, the Manley Vox Box has the best de-esser I've ever used. It's more of an all around vocal unit though, not a dedicated de-esser. But that unit has saved my butt on more than one live mix.
Old 31st March 2006
  #8
Gear Nut
 

A piece of chewing gum on the singers upper front teeth works well.
Old 31st March 2006
  #9
AB3
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I like my SPL de-esser. Is versatile. Not just for vocals. It is smooth sounding and easy to use.
Old 31st March 2006
  #10
Lil FreQ EQ.
Old 31st March 2006
  #11
TML
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phat-so?
Old 31st March 2006
  #12
AB3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thethrillfactor
Lil FreQ EQ.
Can you tell me more about the de-esser on the Lil Freq. What settings does it have?
THANKS.
Old 31st March 2006
  #13
I've had good luck with BSS compressors de essers
Old 31st March 2006
  #14
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six_wax's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bimini
A piece of chewing gum on the singers upper front teeth works well.
I'm gullible (and sadistic) enough to try this.
Old 31st March 2006
  #15
Gear Nut
 

DBX 168A for vox and over all processing , the de esser in it works very well
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