The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
how do we create a bigger headroom? Effects Pedals, Units & Accessories
Old 23rd October 2003
Gear Maniac
chumusic's Avatar

how do we create a bigger headroom?

I always wondered how can we create a bigger headroom, with our gear...specially if we're working with Logic/Protools/cuabse or whatever!!

Which outboard will put that bottom...and big sound into our recordings!!
People keep saying it's not possible...but we know, it should be right??
Old 23rd October 2003
Moderator emeritus

The way to create more headroom is to record at lower levels. Unless there's a translation problem and I don't understand what you're asking.
Old 23rd October 2003
Gear Maniac
chumusic's Avatar

Originally posted by Dave Martin
The way to create more headroom is to record at lower levels. Unless there's a translation problem and I don't understand what you're asking.
in the overaw...your final recording should you think if we record/track stuff on a lower level...we can create a bigger headroom??....there's gonna be a buncha noise coming with that!!

What you think??
Old 23rd October 2003
Lives for gear


Provided your noise floor is lower than your signal level you should be fine. In a 24bit setup you have loads of space.

You record at the optimum level for your preamps, and calibrate your converters for a level that you decide. The industry standard is -18dbfs but you could choose -14 or maybe even -12. It is worth bearing in mind that many sources have a large dynamic range, and its well worth leaving a considerable amount of airspace above your highest peaks...It seems that a lot of plug ins expect this.

The mix should sound big within itself. If you want it louder turn up the volume. It is the mastering engineers job to make it sound loud off the cd not yours. Make sure it sounds lively and powerful at any level in your room.

Old 23rd October 2003
Lives for gear
nlc201's Avatar

I think the term "headroom" is being misused in this situation. I don't believe we're talking about the amount of signal possible before clipping. In any case, DAWs actually have plenty of headroom before clipping as long as you use them properly (I went to the Mix buss seminar as AES )

If a big, tight, low end is what you are looking for, that is a matter of engineering skill and using the right combination of gear. First and foremost, a big sound is achieved through proper tracking and mixing techniques. There is no, *alas*, magic box or piece of gear that will make a small sounding recording massive. Granted, there is gear that does help, but it is only effective so far and only works if used properly.

In terms of low end, if you're running into a muddy sound yet still find yourself wanting more, check out what instruments are producing what frequencies. Is there some synth track or other instrument that has low end information that doesen't necessarily need it? Maybe a judicious use of HPFs would help? Maybe the sound of the bass is wroing to begin with. Maybe there is interference with the kick drum in similar frequencies. Perhaps compressing the bass with a kick drum sidechain will tighten things up. There's a whole plethora of things to do and try.

I guess my point is, a big sound is not platform dependent. I've heard gigantic sounding mixes come off of PT systems so I know it's possible. You might consider mixing on a nice console to 1/2" tape if you find that improves things for you. But, the bottom line is that if you don't know what you're doing, that "sound" will be elusive no matter what amazing gear you put it through.

A solution to this? Get a good mixer (whose work you like) and have him/her come in and work at your facility for a day. Not necessarily to do the real important mix work for you but as a learning tool. Odds are that you can learn a lot just by watching and also get some good tips on your room and your gear. They might also give you some pointers on your monitoring setup which is absolutely KEY in getting your mixes to sound right.

Not to be an anti-gear slut, but it seems you have some decent gear and a decent facility. If you're not getting what you want, perhaps look for solutions in the areas I've mentioned instead of trying to find the magic box that will turn bad mixes into great mixes (not that your mixes are bad!).

Good luck!
Old 24th October 2003
Lives for gear
5down1up's Avatar

well , i guess there are some boxes which make sounds appear " more fat " compared to the sound without processing .
it takes some time till you get used to those boxes , and afterwards you ask the same question again ...

is it fat enough ???

i think the important question is ...
how fat can it be ... does it just feel fat , cause the other stuff thats playing isnt fat at all ?
create a bass drum mult an listen , copy it a 100 times and unmute the tracks 1 by 1 . yes , its getting fatter , or is it just getting louder ? the relation between the single tracks is imho the key to what FAT is and ...
of course some unpayable gearslut toys and if possible , tons of em !!!

Old 24th October 2003
Lives for gear
jazzius II's Avatar

The key to a fat sound is (IMHO):

Good monitoring


ermmmm......that's it!
Old 24th October 2003
Registered User

how do we create a bigger headroom?

Raise the steering wheel....tutt
Old 25th October 2003
One with big hooves
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
I'd rather lower the seat or maybe take the whole damn top off the car. That'll increase the headroom by a bit. I had to drive a Saturn once and I was pissed because I was smacking my head on the roof everytime I went over a bump.
Old 25th October 2003
Lives for gear

Originally posted by Jay Kahrs
. I had to drive a Saturn once and I was pissed because I was smacking my head on the roof everytime I went over a bump.
ROFLMAO...i'm just imagining you driving on some pot hole ridden street in
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.

Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Similar Threads
Thread Starter / Forum
deedeep28 / So Much Gear, So Little Time
ejsongs / Rap + Hip Hop Engineering and Production
Prickstein / Music Computers

Forum Jump
Forum Jump