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vocal db peak when mixing?
Old 26th January 2009
  #1
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🎧 10 years
vocal db peak when mixing?

Just wondering what is your peak for vocals when mixing a pop rock song?
Old 27th January 2009
  #2
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🎧 10 years
pretty sure i've never bothered to check. just ride the fader until it's "there."
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #3
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skiroy's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I dont know if your talking bout digital but I was always told to record in at -10db but it always sounded thin thin me compared when I used to record in right near -3. I have been told recently by a good engineer to record in near -3db and I like the sound better. So I dont know what everyone is talking about.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #4
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psycho_monkey's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiroy ➡️
I dont know if your talking bout digital but I was always told to record in at -10db but it always sounded thin thin me compared when I used to record in right near -3. I have been told recently by a good engineer to record in near -3db and I like the sound better. So I dont know what everyone is talking about.
this isnt the issue here - and your quieter vocal just sounded quieter, not thinner unless you did something else to it. There's plenty of discussion on why to record at a lower level, do a search.

To the op - don't worry about it, just mix your track.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #5
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiroy ➡️
I dont know if your talking bout digital but I was always told to record in at -10db but it always sounded thin thin me compared when I used to record in right near -3. I have been told recently by a good engineer to record in near -3db and I like the sound better.
That's funny, it sounds awful to me if it gets much above -20.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #6
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Proggm's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by author ➡️
That's funny, it sounds awful to me if it gets much above -20.
If you are recording at 16 bits that may be a problem because of the noise floor.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #7
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Proggm ➡️
If you are recording at 16 bits that may be a problem because of the noise floor.
I wasn't aware that anyone recorded at 16 anymore.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #8
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Proggm ➡️
If you are recording at 16 bits that may be a problem because of the noise floor.
I took that as sarcasm...and you got it the wrong way round!
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #9
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beau's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
you think the bass taking away from my vocals?

it really depends on the mic. but i usually always mix the vocal anywhere between 16ohms to 300BPM. unless there are a lot of octaves that need speeding up. but thats where the rushin dragin comes in handy, just slave it all to midi and then run it through a sonic maximizer. just make sure you check your phase....

peace

beau
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #10
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skiroy's Avatar
 
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I dont record at 16bit. But I have done a search and read all kinds of comments on this topic. Thats why I dont get it. But maybe recording lower is an issue for more dynamic source. I record alot of rap that normally isnt very dynamic. Plus Im usinga sm7b which requires a lot of gain if that has anything to do with it. But to the OP I believe all the debate is over what level to record into at. Im assuming once your in you can mix to whatever level you want as long as your not clipping. BUt if you recorded in at -20 and want to mix so your meters are hitting -3db I wouls think you would have to hard limit your tracks and I was told that this isnt good either.Sorry I am just confusing you but Im still confused about it myself. I know what is common practice but since I have been trying it,it just doesnt sound right to me. Now I have a really credible engineer telling me what I used to do is fine.
Old 1st February 2009 | Show parent
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey ➡️
I took that as sarcasm...and you got it the wrong way round!
I don´t understand what I got the wrong way round. The lower is the input of your converters, the higher will be the signal/noise ratio.
Old 1st February 2009 | Show parent
  #12
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psycho_monkey's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Proggm ➡️
I don´t understand what I got the wrong way round. The lower is the input of your converters, the higher will be the signal/noise ratio.
Author made what I took to be a sarcastic comment, saying "if it gets ABOVE -20, it sounds worse to me". If he'd said "if it gets BELOW -20, it sounds worse" saying "the noise floor is the reason" would be valid. Saying the louder it gets, the worse something sounds, wouldn't be a noise floor issue.

FWIW -18dBFS is a louder signal than -20dBFs...so going ABOVE -20 to -18 is going out of the noise floor, not into it.

Like I said, I took it as a sarcastic comment - maybe I misunderstood.
Old 1st February 2009 | Show parent
  #13
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psycho_monkey's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiroy ➡️
I dont record at 16bit. But I have done a search and read all kinds of comments on this topic. Thats why I dont get it. But maybe recording lower is an issue for more dynamic source. I record alot of rap that normally isnt very dynamic. Plus Im usinga sm7b which requires a lot of gain if that has anything to do with it. But to the OP I believe all the debate is over what level to record into at. Im assuming once your in you can mix to whatever level you want as long as your not clipping. BUt if you recorded in at -20 and want to mix so your meters are hitting -3db I wouls think you would have to hard limit your tracks and I was told that this isnt good either.Sorry I am just confusing you but Im still confused about it myself. I know what is common practice but since I have been trying it,it just doesnt sound right to me. Now I have a really credible engineer telling me what I used to do is fine.
yeah, you don't really understand the question here - he's asking what level to mix the vocal at (ie what level at the mix buss) - which in itself is a fairly nonsensical question, since the answer is "the level that sounds right". I think you're just confusing the issue!

To clear up YOUR problem a little - the always record giving yourself plenty of headroom - that means that if mixing ITB you don't have to pull the faders right down to avoid clipping the mix buss, or if mixing OTB again, it means that you can have your faders in the most detailed area of their travel without having to trim down the tape returns, and you won't clip the analogue mix buss.

Avoid clipping at all costs; recording at lower levels (eg as low as an average level of -18dBFS - which allows plenty of headroom for unexpected peaks) WON'T result in any reduced quality when recording at 24bit, since 24bit has 144dB of dynamic range anyway (more than the range of human hearing) so recording quietly just means your 24bit recording effectively becomes a 21bit recording or whatever, which still has more than enough dynamic range.
Old 1st February 2009 | Show parent
  #14
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stuntbutt's Avatar
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beau ➡️
i unless there are a lot of octaves that need speeding up. but thats where the rushin dragin comes in handy, just slave it all to midi
beau
OMG the Russian Dragon. That's hilarious! I remember that box.
Old 1st February 2009 | Show parent
  #15
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🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey ➡️
Author made what I took to be a sarcastic comment
Noo, I don't have the brains for that, I just like low levels.
Old 1st February 2009 | Show parent
  #16
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Proggm's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey ➡️
. If he'd said "if it gets BELOW -20, it sounds worse" saying "the noise floor is the reason" would be valid.
Yep, I took it that way. Seems I've read wrong, sorry
Old 4th February 2009 | Show parent
  #17
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skiroy's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey ➡️
yeah, you don't really understand the question here - he's asking what level to mix the vocal at (ie what level at the mix buss) - which in itself is a fairly nonsensical question, since the answer is "the level that sounds right". I think you're just confusing the issue!

To clear up YOUR problem a little - the always record giving yourself plenty of headroom - that means that if mixing ITB you don't have to pull the faders right down to avoid clipping the mix buss, or if mixing OTB again, it means that you can have your faders in the most detailed area of their travel without having to trim down the tape returns, and you won't clip the analogue mix buss.

Avoid clipping at all costs; recording at lower levels (eg as low as an average level of -18dBFS - which allows plenty of headroom for unexpected peaks) WON'T result in any reduced quality when recording at 24bit, since 24bit has 144dB of dynamic range anyway (more than the range of human hearing) so recording quietly just means your 24bit recording effectively becomes a 21bit recording or whatever, which still has more than enough dynamic range.
I think I may get why I think recording in at lower levels sound thin to me. and tell me if im wrong and I apologize to the OP but I have a rep about starting alot of threads.But anyways I have built in preamps in my Profire2626 and though I was tweaking them I also turned down the input gain and output on my pre to have the levels come in lower.I think this is my issue. I now realize that I need to set my gain as high as possiable to match my mic as much as possiable and then worry about adjusting the level it comes in at the interface via its preamps. I hope Im right to state that most know that driving your pre amp at different levels changes the sound so it would make sense if it sounded thin to me when I was lowering the levels on my mic pre.
Old 8th July 2016
  #18
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🎧 5 years
Wrong!

Recording at lower levels might indeed result in a thinner sound. By pushing the preamp gain, your recording gains harmonic distortion (when using analog preamps). Hence some frequencies get emphasized and and thus might contribute to a fuller, warmer sound.
Old 8th July 2016
  #19
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Maybe I read the question wrong but he asked about mixing if that's truly what he means then the answer would be where it sounds right
But he he is talking recording that's a different thing but the norm for digital recording is -18
Old 8th July 2016
  #20
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superburtm's Avatar
 
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Louder than the snare drum.
Old 8th July 2016 | Show parent
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allan Curtis ➡️
Recording at lower levels might indeed result in a thinner sound. By pushing the preamp gain, your recording gains harmonic distortion (when using analog preamps). Hence some frequencies get emphasized and and thus might contribute to a fuller, warmer sound.
Driving your analog preamp should not change your recording level yes it will change the sound thinner or fatter harmonics etc but the recording level should around -18 gain staging your pre has nothing to do with recording level
Old 10th July 2016
  #22
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RCM - Ronan's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I usually try and keep the peak levels of all of my individual tracks around -6dBFS. I find that works well for general gain staging as well as a good level to hit most of my plugins.

In terms of where to mix the level of the vocal in relationship to the other instruments, that is something you really need to do by ear rather than meters. how "loud" something feels to us is not really something meters can tell us.
Old 10th July 2016 | Show parent
  #23
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psycho_monkey's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Allan Curtis ➡️
Recording at lower levels might indeed result in a thinner sound. By pushing the preamp gain, your recording gains harmonic distortion (when using analog preamps). Hence some frequencies get emphasized and and thus might contribute to a fuller, warmer sound.
Holy 7-year thread bump

Of course, you can always crank the gain and lower the output level of a "colour" preamp. Thereby getting the "warmth" but recording a lower level.

Most interface pres won't work like this though - it's intended as a single level control of clean gain.
Most likely, the quieter vocal sounds thinner because it's quieter.
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