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What is it that defines analog?
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #61
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Franc ➑️
+1

If anyone needs aural reason - try this:

Tubeway Army - Gary Numan - Are Friends Electric - YouTube

It feels real when you press the key and when you have twiddled the knobs.
Ohh, fine. +1. Just 'cause agreeing with Grumph is awesome.

And the reason is... absence of distortions that are inherent to digital. Any tone harmonically unrelated to the sound is going to screw with it like a drunk frat boy at a *****house, even in itty bitty amounts. It'll beat against any frequencies close by like a cop on some college kid protesting big money.

Ever wonder why an analog signal with a bit of harmonic distortion somehow sounds... cleaner than a supposedly pristine digital signal... or another way of putting it, the digital signal sounds weaker or muffled? Or why the sound appears to drop out when you set that digital compressor to fast?

It's not what analog has got that digital doesn't.

It's what digital has got that analog doesn't.

Of course, this is an advantage to digital- sounds that you can't get with analog... soooo...
Old 26th September 2012
  #62
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...oops. Look where a tiny bit of irony can get you. Corksniffer territory...

Sorry.

My real and absolutely non-ironic feelings on this subject are of course that any synth can be made to sound "threedimensional". (And clear in the highs and so on...)

All synths sound different (breaking news!!!) and i for one don't care wether i get a good sound out of the JP-4 or the microwave.


As for the original question, i still haven't really seen any answers that go much beyond "you can feel it", which to me is about as rational an explanation as saying that the flying spagetti monster gave us analogue synthesis as a divine gift to be revered, praised and cherished by creative persons with to much money in their pockets...


...and as an afterthought - as long as my DW-8000 sounds "more analogue" to me than my M6r, JX and @juno i'd have to say that the key to "analogue sound" is probably in the filter design.

Slap a characterful analogue filter on almost any source (8 bit digital oscillators as in the DW, anyone?) and revel in "analogue" glory.
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #63
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I dunno about that, 12-bit DSS-1 aliases like a motherf**ker.

No way does it sound like a pure analog synth. Hell no, and I'm glad that it doesn't. Love that analog filter and the digital grit together, so cool.

I wouldn't mistake the ol' Emulator III for analog either, despite its sick analog section... Sampling with that thing actually made the samples sound better, and nowhere near as dark and artifact-y as the DSS-1, biig sounding, but not what I would call an analog sound.

God I love hybrids.
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grumphh ➑️
i still haven't really seen any answers that go much beyond "you can feel it"
i don't think any of us here are qualified to answer in real terms what it is about analogue that sets it apart from digital. i tried but my post is quite unconvincing, as are many of the others. has there been any real research in this field?

i guess there must be, by the software engineers that try to replicate what an analogue synth does.
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #65
ozy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grumphh ➑️
i still haven't really seen any answers that go much beyond "you can feel it", which to me is about as rational an explanation as saying that the flying spagetti monster gave us analogue synthesis as a divine gift to be revered, praised and cherished by creative persons
check this.

And weep.




Quote:
Originally Posted by isham ➑️
Try hiding 8 GRPA4 to your wife, girlfriend ...
Grp A4 x8 24 Oscillators in unison - YouTube
Quote:
Originally Posted by isham ➑️
A dirty demo, just exploring and learning
Of course pure sound from synth to mixer to converter to Live. No treatment or effect, raw Grp a4 with a pattern I prerecorded in midi in live (looped)
And: yes, I believe that the Flying Spaghetti Monster gave us analogue synthesizers.

Maybe it's not true,

but is is a conforting thought, it helps me face the idea of mortality, and it is what keeps the Western Civilization from falling apart.

So, even if I am not a fervent believer,

I pray the Flying Spaghetti Monster and Bob Moog's icon five times a day.

SFW?

What better belief have you got to offer us, you heathen?
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ozy ➑️
check this.

And weep.



Yoda says: Learn must you to embed videos.



Anyway, to many overtones for comfort...














...i kid, i kid heh - i'd love having one of these to play with...
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ozy ➑️
check this.

And weep.


yo ozy ima let you finish but i still think ken elhardt did the best bach of all time


Last edited by Yoozer; 26th September 2012 at 07:42 PM.. Reason: embedding, the hardest thing
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bitleyTM ➑️
No such thing as a bargain price!
Poly-800
Old 26th September 2012
  #69
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by metrosonus ➑️
assuming that we have a 100% brand new analog synth, out of the box, pristine caps, opamps, clean outputs and sliders, what is it, to you, about the sound the makes it analog?

To me, it depends on the synth, but I think analog sounds more unique in the higher frequencies and the low ones.

I also think SSMs and CEMs are more telling than strict discrete analog.
I'm new to the hardware scene. But to me, analog lacks precision. Digital sound is 100% reproduce-able while there is a fair amount of "float" with analogs. Operating temp of the tubes and other characteristics like age can easily change an analog synth's character slightly. This is why analog feels organic and digital sterile in most cases.
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #70
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Tubes?
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #71
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by robot gigante ➑️
Ohh, fine. +1. Just 'cause agreeing with Grumph is awesome.

And the reason is... absence of distortions that are inherent to digital. Any tone harmonically unrelated to the sound is going to screw with it like a drunk frat boy at a *****house, even in itty bitty amounts. It'll beat against any frequencies close by like a cop on some college kid protesting big money.

Ever wonder why an analog signal with a bit of harmonic distortion somehow sounds... cleaner than a supposedly pristine digital signal... or another way of putting it, the digital signal sounds weaker or muffled? Or why the sound appears to drop out when you set that digital compressor to fast?

It's not what analog has got that digital doesn't.

It's what digital has got that analog doesn't.

Of course, this is an advantage to digital- sounds that you can't get with analog... soooo...

One thing that interests me - how does that relate to early digital effects processors, for instance, which sound more 'analog' or at least more warm to some people - considering what you've said, what is the reason for that ?
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #72
Deleted b788fee
Guest
It's been said before but it bears repeating ...

In a mix β€” especially a dense one β€” most discernible difference between digital and analog disappears ...

And producing skills are much more important than any difference in sound quality between the two formats ...

What's most important in creating a song is the feel and flow of the track ... And that is achieved using any manner of tools and methods ... Analog, digital, organic ... There's are worlds of possibility in sound creation ...

A good producer will find what he needs to achieve that ...
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #73
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt Noobington ➑️
considering what you've said, what is the reason for that ?
High frequency roll-off to reduce unwanted side-effects, analog amplification/filtering stages to improve signal fidelity after the fact.
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diametro ➑️
It's been said before but it bears repeating ...

In a mix β€” especially a dense one β€” most discernible difference between digital and analog disappears ...

And producing skills are much more important than any difference in sound quality between the two formats ...

What's most important in creating a song is the feel and flow of the track ... And that is achieved using any manner of tools and methods ... Analog, digital, organic ... There's are worlds of possibility in sound creation ...

A good producer will find what he needs to achieve that ...
Go away. Reason is the last thing this thread needs.
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diametro ➑️
It's been said before but it bears repeating ...

In a mix β€” especially a dense one β€” most discernible difference between digital and analog disappears ...

And producing skills are much more important than any difference in sound quality between the two formats ...

What's most important in creating a song is the feel and flow of the track ... And that is achieved using any manner of tools and methods ... Analog, digital, organic ... There's are worlds of possibility in sound creation ...

A good producer will find what he needs to achieve that ...
I agree, except that I think- and this depends on the other elements of the dense mix- that the analog synths will often sit better in the mix, and blend better. I can't tell you how many times during my career as a freelance mixer when I've mixed tracks where a digital bass, or pads, or whatever, completely wrecks the whole mix 'cause it just doesn't mesh with everything else, and I've was tearing my hair our trying to EQ or process the damn thing to get it to sit. In the end the best option has a lot of times been to lo-fi or bit-crush a bunch of the other elements of the mix with plugins to get that proper blend with one or two digital tracks. In the end you can make it work, but honestly I'd rather not have to change up the sound of the whole mix just to get that one element to jive properly.

If most of the elements have that digital characteristic then it is fine. In fact I would say that in those cases- say there is a lot of bit-crushing going on- it might be the analog synths that won't sit right. So if you're all ITB that isn't even an issue, just make a killer arrangement and done.

Producing skills are all about knowing what is going to work with what- it's not about being able to spot whether it is digital or analog in a dense mix, it's about using elements that play nice together. At least that is how I've experienced it over the last 15 years or so
Old 26th September 2012 | Show parent
  #76
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt Noobington ➑️
One thing that interests me - how does that relate to early digital effects processors, for instance, which sound more 'analog' or at least more warm to some people - considering what you've said, what is the reason for that ?
Usually these are delays, reverbs, other time-based effects, no? These are some of the things that digital does really well, while emulating analog synth circuits, or analog compressors, EQ's etc. are a whole different ball game. When you have a digital compressor set to a fast release, at a certain point you are basically breaking Nyquist's Law, and you get artifacts, and it sounds like the signal drops out, or you get zippering. There are some illuminating posts by Dave Derr (designer of the Distressor) and other gear designers about this if you do a search.

You have to consider the amount of R&D and money spent on those old machines compared to a plugin, including the converters and analog stages... It's the same reason why something like the EIII sounds so killer even though it is limited compared to a soft sampler. Those legendary processors weren't cheap.
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robot gigante ➑️
I can't tell you how many times during my career as a freelance mixer when I've mixed tracks where a digital bass, or pads, or whatever, completely wrecks the whole mix 'cause it just doesn't mesh with everything else, and I've was tearing my hair our trying to EQ or process the damn thing to get it to sit.
Not trying to be snide - but is it simply a problem of the synth being digital, that made it so hard to mix?

couldn't that just as well be the wrong choice of sound on the composers part?

Or just the wrong digital synth for the task?



I mean, all depending on the style of the music, a characteristic sounding analogue synth could be just as hard to get to fit in a mix without severe processing.
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grumphh ➑️
Go away. Reason is the last thing this thread needs.
Yeah, software clearly has no place in a discussion about "what defines analog".

The answer's really simple: is the method of sound generation and filtering classifyable as analog? If so, then it's analog. This discussion is muddled because all kinds of qualities are attached to it that have nothing to do with analog - don't even have to be intrinsic to analog.

Doesn't mean that it automatically sounds good. Listen to a Juno-60 without chorus. Bo-ring. A Solina String Ensemble without the Ensemble. Bo-ring. A Poly-800. Yuch.
Old 27th September 2012
  #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robot gigante ➑️
I dunno about that, 12-bit DSS-1 aliases like a motherf**ker.

No way does it sound like a pure analog synth. Hell no, and I'm glad that it doesn't. Love that analog filter and the digital grit together, so cool.

I wouldn't mistake the ol' Emulator III for analog either, despite its sick analog section... Sampling with that thing actually made the samples sound better, and nowhere near as dark and artifact-y as the DSS-1, biig sounding, but not what I would call an analog sound.

God I love hybrids.
I fully agree! I once had an Emu Emax and sampled the strings patch off my Juno-2. When I played that sample, OMG, it sounded so much fatter than the original strings from the Juno!! Couldn't believe it! :o

Qf
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #80
ozy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marcgood ➑️
to me, analog lacks precision. Operating temp of the tubes can easily change an analog synth's character
Quote:
Originally Posted by robot gigante ➑️
Tubes?
Yes, tubes!

Analog is based on tubes.

The famous "moog tubes":




"oberheim tubes"




and the slightly different, but oh-so-british-sounding,

London Analogue Tubes, used in the EMS and wasp synthetizers!

Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ozy ➑️
Yes, tubes!

Analog is based on tubes.
That is true. The best analog synths, like for example a MicroKorg, is 97% pure tubes or better.
Old 27th September 2012
  #82
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So its safe to say that analog signals are sent thru various proprietary tubes, then gated through either steam or wormholes, and finally processed via united states postal service envelopes for final effect. Digital lacks the analog sound simply because they prefer FedEx.

Sent from my PG06100
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #83
ozy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Headz51230 ➑️
analog signals are sent thru various proprietary tubes
There's plenty of synthesizers playing through youtube! QED
Old 27th September 2012
  #84
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I would love to see a double blind experiment done on this.

16 identical midi controllers controlling 8 analog and 8 VA synths in another room. (say we use doepfer keyboards and BCR2000s)

All have the most basic controls mapped (like knobs for ADSR of amp and filter, cutoff, resonance, and waveform).

Then you could have some universal buttons such as chord memory and arpeggiators that affected all the controllers as well as FX buttons to route all the synths through both digital and analog effects.

All the synths would be mixed in analog and routed to the same monitors in the lab.

The test subjects would be classically trained piano players.

What 8 VAs and 8 analogs would you set up behind the curtain?
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #85
VST
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grovestand ➑️
I would love to see a double blind experiment done on this.
I would too, but I see a problem with this

Quote:
midi controllers controlling 8 analog
You would have to eliminate the midi part on the analogs to do a comprehensive test, imho. But you could have the test administrator do the knob sweeps.
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #86
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vstace ➑️
I would too, but I see a problem with this



You would have to eliminate the midi part on the analogs to do a comprehensive test, imho. But you could have the test administrator do the knob sweeps.
Hmm.. OK so heres what you do.

Custom controller instead of a BCR2000 you use something similar that uses CV. For the midi controller VA synths you use a CV=> Midi converter. I guess you could do the same thing with a keyboard that operated using CV (like a CS-80 keyboard or something?).

That would eliminate digital stepping from the analog sweeps and provide you with an infinite resolution triggering device as well.

To save money you could just have one controller and route the output to all 16 devices.
Old 27th September 2012
  #87
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Haha, I love these forums. Forumers need double blind tests to know if people can hear the difference between virtual analog synths and analog synths now?

This is great, great stuff. Keep it coming!
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #88
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Synth Buddha ➑️
Haha, I love these forums. Forumers need double blind tests to know if people can hear the difference between virtual analog synths and analog synths now?

This is great, great stuff. Keep it coming!
2 out of 3 forumers agree that you're out of your element Donny.
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grovestand ➑️
2 out of 3 forumers agree that you're out of your element Donny.
I would like to thank those two out of three forumers for the awesome entertainment they're providing us. Loving it!

And "Donny." Well done! You came up with that all by yourself?

With people like you posting the kind of stuff you do, who needs to ever be bored?
Old 27th September 2012 | Show parent
  #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Synth Buddha ➑️
I would like to thank those two out of three forumers for the awesome entertainment they're providing us. Loving it!

And "Donny." Well done! You came up with that all by yourself?

With people like you posting the kind of stuff you do, who needs to ever be bored?
No it was a quote from the Big Lebowski. I assumed that you hadn't really read the rest of the thread.

So you wouldn't be interested to know if people who have good ears but haven't participated in this debate could hear the difference?

I guess this is how this discussion usually falls apart so I will bow out. Glad I could entertain you.
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