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PT fader problems? Jon?
Old 14th January 2003
  #91
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bassmac's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Good story Eric. heh

The real question should be...

Will a fader move in Pro Tools make a hit tune...not a hit tune?

It is still about the tune, isn't it? ...at least that's what people who buy records seem to think.

:eek:
Old 14th January 2003
  #92
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Curve Dominant
One thing that has occurred to The Curve: Listening to Rick's CD on a boombox for differences should be sufficient. If Jon doesn't have access to his own control room, who else possibly could?
Thanks for the fun post, Curve.

I see your point...but it also makes sense that in the studio, while recording, editing, mixing and mastering, we need to be working at a higher quality level than that of the final product so as to maximize the cumulative end result of all that tweaking.
Old 14th January 2003
  #93
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by bassmac
The real question should be...

Will a fader move in Pro Tools make a hit tune...not a hit tune?

It is still about the tune, isn't it?
Kind of depends on whether you're the songwriter or the engineer. One writes "tunes"... the other is supposed to care about the sound and maybe push the quality envelope forward.

I write songs myself too, but when I log on to "Gearslutz" my focus tends to shift to the engineering side. Of course, both are valid and important activities, along with the arrangement and performance, packaging, promotion, marketing, manufacture and sale of the tune.
Old 14th January 2003
  #94
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RKrizman's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by bassmac


The real question should be...

Will a fader move in Pro Tools make a hit tune...not a hit tune?

With that you're begging the whole question of engineering excellence. You could ask that question about any technical issue.
What do you think of the Manley SLAM? (can you make a hit without it?)
What's the best 2-buss compressor (can you make a hit without it?)
What's the best way to dither? (do you need dither for a hit?)

Your success will result from the sum total of a lot of little things. You can decide for yourself which ones you deem important, but you better at least get some of them right.

BTW, why do you assume that everyone here is only interested in recording a hit song?

-R
Old 14th January 2003
  #95
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alphajerk's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
i have no interest in a "hit" song. i wouldnt mind having a "hit" song if it wasnt the goal but accidentally happened. i dont listen to music and say "that sounds like a hit"... i just like it or i dont.
Old 15th January 2003
  #96
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bassmac's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by RKrizman
BTW, why do you assume that everyone here is only interested in recording a hit song?
I don't.

Don't get me wrong, I think this is all very interesting. The point I was making thought, is when Joe average record buying consumer is driving down the road groovin' to their favorite tunes, they're groovin' because of how the *song* makes them feel - that's why people buy art. Weather is was recorded on PT (with or without fader moves), 2" tape, or ADAT's is really irrelevant.

As an engineer and PT user, I'm interested. As a consumer, I don't care - sonic quality is not what motivates me to buy a record.


Old 15th January 2003
  #97
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🎧 15 years
I don't think they are such separable points. Sometimes. Generally, though for a song to 'feel' good it's got to sound good, and for a song to survive the 'degradation' of car radio, traffic noise and so forth it needs to sound good at source eeking out every last bit (no pun) of quality. Same thing for MP3.
It also needs to sound good to start to get heard above the competition anyway.
Old 15th January 2003
  #98
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RKrizman's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by bassmac

As an engineer and PT user, I'm interested. As a consumer, I don't care - sonic quality is not what motivates me to buy a record.
Well obviously joe consumer doesn't care about PT faders. But here, in this group, in this thread, we're speaking as engineers, and that's the issue that's being discussed. Some people have claimed that it makes a tremendous difference.

Joe consumer couldn't give a flying farg about anything in this entire newsgroup. What's your point?

-R
Old 15th January 2003
  #99
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RKrizman's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by alphajerk
i have no interest in a "hit" song. i wouldnt mind having a "hit" song if it wasnt the goal but accidentally happened. i dont listen to music and say "that sounds like a hit"... i just like it or i dont.
Right. That was one half of my point. The other is that there are all kinds of music being recorded that are not intended to be hit songs. Some even without drums, if you can believe that!!

-R
Old 15th January 2003
  #100
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bassmac's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by RKrizman
What's your point?

Well after seven pages of nothing... simply another perspective regarding the relevance of this issue, and how it relates to people who actually buy records - but I won't bother discussing art with engineers anymore.

dfegad
Old 15th January 2003
  #101
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
posted by Jon:
Thanks for the fun post, Curve.

I see your point...but it also makes sense that in the studio, while recording, editing, mixing and mastering, we need to be working at a higher quality level than that of the final product so as to maximize the cumulative end result of all that tweaking.
Yes, Jon, I agree with you 110%.

The humorous post I put up was not meant to ridicule the quest for high quality audio specifically. On the contrary. I constantly agonize over the quality of the audio I put into my mixes. I think Renie put it best:
Quote:
posted by Renie:
for a song to survive the 'degradation' of car radio, traffic noise and so forth it needs to sound good at source eeking out every last bit (no pun) of quality. Same thing for MP3.
It also needs to sound good to start to get heard above the competition anyway.
But there's another, finer point that I was trying to illustrate, and this bit touched on it:
Quote:
posted by Curve Dominant:
We here at Curve Labs have done our own highly scientific tests, measuring the differences between tracks mixed in PT at unity gain, and the same tracks having moved the PT faders around a lot. There was a clearly percievable difference in the sound. We actually liked the sound of the tracks that had fader movements better than the ones that didn't.
In other words, when I excercise complete artistic freedom in the use of the kit (such as utilizing moving fader automation in PT), the mixes "sound" better than when that artistic freedom is constrained by the kind of second-guessing and lack of confidence imposed by voodoo mythology, such as the likes of "fader degradation" and "mix bus issues."

The Law Of Diminishing Returns

As audio engineers, we strive for the best quality audio achievable. But we are also in the service of art, and we all know and appreciate and love the art. The quest for audio perfection can become so exacting, the microscope so fine, that the engineer can begin to build a cage around the inspiration and sponteneity that art requires to be great, drawing boundaries around it and choking it off. When an audio engineer does this, he/she does a disservice to the artist and the art, as well as to the audience. A more balanced approach is needed.

To me, "fader degradation" and "mix bus issues" represent a total loss of perspective by audio engineers. When the flaws in the audio (percieved or otherwise) are debatable even among seasoned pros, we can be sure that they are not issues that will concern artists and their audiences in the slightest fashion. And when our obsession over those (percieved or otherwise) flaws interrupts the creative flow, the line of diminishing returns has been crossed.

That is the serious, "irony-free" version of the point I was attempting to make with my previous post.

Flame on...
Old 15th January 2003
  #102
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alphajerk's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Renie
I don't think they are such separable points. Sometimes. Generally, though for a song to 'feel' good it's got to sound good, and for a song to survive the 'degradation' of car radio, traffic noise and so forth it needs to sound good at source eeking out every last bit (no pun) of quality. Same thing for MP3.
It also needs to sound good to start to get heard above the competition anyway.
are you kidding me? VU, MC5, Iggy just right off the top of my head. early flaming lips, butthole surfers, mercury rev... minor threat. fugazi sonically sounds amateur to some but great to others [like me]. chrome, flipper. im sure there are MILLIONS more. i just dont want to think right now.

and lets not forget about MOST of whats on the radio right now... how about RHCP?
Old 15th January 2003
  #103
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Curve Dominant's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Don't include Iggy Pop in that bag, Barrett. Iggy's stuff always sounded top-notch.
Old 15th January 2003
  #104
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alphajerk's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
um... iggy sounding top notch? if you call sounding like your speakers getting ready to blow out of your system top notch.... then i guess so.

although iggy's stuff makes VU's stuff sound audiophile quality to me.
Old 15th January 2003
  #105
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by alphajerk
are you kidding me? VU, MC5, Iggy just right off the top of my head. early flaming lips, butthole surfers, mercury rev... minor threat. fugazi sonically sounds amateur to some but great to others [like me]. chrome, flipper. im sure there are MILLIONS more. i just dont want to think right now.

and lets not forget about MOST of whats on the radio right now... how about RHCP?
No I'm not 'kidding' but I don't think that was a genuine question anyway.

I'm not talking about lo-fi or individual sounding records. I personally like a lot of lo-fi myself. But I already said 'sometimes' top fidelity doesn't matter. I would guess that most of those tracks/artists don't sound like that by accident though, or through lack of care, it's artistic choice sometimes a great deal goes into getting things sounding the right kind of 'bad' otherwise they wouldn't work. I don't consider it amateur or pro, just taste. Many other songs depend on their sound quality along with all other quality control; the song etc etc..
I'm just saying it's not as simple as saying joe consumer doesn't care about sound quality.
Old 15th January 2003
  #106
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
jon's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Curve Dominant
As audio engineers, we strive for the best quality audio achievable. But we are also in the service of art, and we all know and appreciate and love the art. The quest for audio perfection can become so exacting, the microscope so fine, that the engineer can begin to build a cage around the inspiration and sponteneity that art requires to be great, drawing boundaries around it and choking it off. When an audio engineer does this, he/she does a disservice to the artist and the art, as well as to the audience. A more balanced approach is needed.
I understand your point of view, but remember that it is based on your situation -- just as mine is based on mine. If you are mixing on an analog console, these particular issues aren't constraints. If you are mixing in PT, then you have to deal with them the way that works best for you.

Many engineers (and artists) are bothered by the sound of mixing in ProTools. Some aren't. Some just deal with it because PT is cheaper. Speaking just for myself, working on an analog console frees me up from that s*** and liberates me. Audio and mixing is a subjective thing, and if ProTools mixing makes you smile, then more power to you. It's a personal thing. Mix on!
Old 15th January 2003
  #107
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Renie
I'm just saying it's not as simple as saying joe consumer doesn't care about sound quality.
it really is as simple as saying joe consumer doesnt give a crap about sound quality. at least here in america its pretty close to the truth. as long as they can hear the song... they are A-OK/
Old 15th January 2003
  #108
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Steve Smith's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by alphajerk
it really is as simple as saying joe consumer doesnt give a crap about sound quality. at least here in america its pretty close to the truth. as long as they can hear the song... they are A-OK/
Hey guys, I think it is actually worst than either of you have said, I think Joe Comsumer in the US doesn't have a clue what good is, but thinks they do..
Old 15th January 2003
  #109
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RKrizman's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by bassmac
Well after seven pages of nothing... simply another perspective regarding the relevance of this issue, and how it relates to people who actually buy records - but I won't bother discussing art with engineers anymore.

dfegad
When you say that joe consumer doesn't care about sonics, you're not discussing art. But it's still a good issue and probably deserves its own thread.

-R
Old 15th January 2003
  #110
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🎧 15 years
My view is that the average listener may be mainly happy to listen in 'degraded' situations on 'degraded' formats but they expect generally very high standards up to that point.

It's a bit of a red herring, this sweeping dismissive 'no one cares anyway' attitude, although it has some truth in it.

Personally, fretting about sonics isn't where I want to be, me and Eric Vincent both, but sonics are really important to me. I think Eric touched on some interesting stuff here about the psychology behind all this. There seems to be a lot of fear around that I don't fully understand.
Old 15th January 2003
  #111
Jax
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Curve Dominant
Don't include Iggy Pop in that bag, Barrett. Iggy's stuff always sounded top-notch.
Have you ever actually listened to Fun House?? That was Iggy Pop (Stooges) before he decided to suck from the 80's onward. It's a good recording but top-notch sounding it ain't. Regardless, it's considered to be some of his most top-notch music.
Old 15th January 2003
  #112
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Steve Smith
Hey guys, I think it is actually worst than either of you have said, I think Joe Comsumer in the US doesn't have a clue what good is, but thinks they do..
that is most likely true.

i always get the answer when i ask if it sound good "who cares? you can hear it right?"... it really puts a lot into perspective when obsessing over details while mixing. i think bob hit the nail on the head [this thread? or another here] about "over-engineering"...
Old 15th January 2003
  #113
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bassmac's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
WARNING: Art discussion ahead.

When I see a painting I like, I'll usually have an immediate reaction to it, which has nothing to do with the tools, or medium used to create it - it's just a feeling I get.

The first time I saw a large scale Pollack, I was floored to the point I was speechless for about a week...still gives me chills thinking about it. But, if you listened to his critics at the time, it wasn't even considered art. After all, art was created with fine oil paints using natural bristle brushes - not house paint splattered on the floor! I guess I didn't know enough to realize what art was *supposed* to be...or not be.

Like a lot of the bands in the genre AJ mentioned, (a fav of mine too) the performance and emotion is what grabs you, and it will *still* grab you no matter what type of signal chain, or medium is used to capture it.

Sure, it would have been cool to hear the Beatles on the big mains in their own studio, perfect fidelity and all. But it was seeing them on TV coming through that 1" distorted speaker that inspired a generation - and to this day, is a moment that has been unequaled, in spite of the advances in audio quality.

Like I said, I don't disagree with making every effort to get the best sounds you can, that's what an engineer's job is to do, (so it sounds good on the TV too - yes Renie) but like Eric said so much better than me, it's also important to keep things in proper perspective, and not kill the creative flow by worrying about things that probably only your dog will hear.

Old 16th January 2003
  #114
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by bassmac
WARNING: Art discussion ahead.
When I see a painting I like, I'll usually have an immediate reaction to it, which has nothing to do with the tools, or medium used to create it - it's just a feeling I get.

The first time I saw a large scale Pollack, I was floored to the point I was speechless for about a week...still gives me chills thinking about it. But, if you listened to his critics at the time, it wasn't even considered art. After all, art was created with fine oil paints using natural bristle brushes - not house paint splattered on the floor!
Yeah thats what I'm talkin about! Its what moves YOU right?
I think Joe Average Is getting short shrift here, as I respond to art by the way it makes me feel, just like Joe.
I may have more knowledge about how some of the art was constructed and in some ways that takes some of the fun out of it. I went on vacation and brought along 7 albums crushed down to mp3's on 1 cd, still sounded really good. Peace
daniel
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