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EQing out lisp?
Old 16th September 2012
  #1
Gear Head
 
🎧 5 years
EQing out lisp?

Okay, so I recorded myself doingthis piano/vocal recording extremely quickly, so there some pops and maybe even some clips in here, but I just needed a voice to practice with melodyne on. However, it did get me thinking, my words have always had a liitle minor lisp too em, like a little slurred edge thing to them, and I'm just wondering, is there a way to, I guess, and don't kill me here....."fix it in the mix".....rather than just requiring the artist improve?


http://soundcloud.com/ajn212/raining-in-baltimore-cover

(I don't know how else to upload this, the file is too big. )
Old 16th September 2012
  #2
Deleted User
Guest
Is there a "de-esser" function in Melodyne? What you are experiencing is excessive "sibilance" and a de-esser is a frequency-dependent limiter that clamps down on the offensive band of frequencies. You want to avoid EQ in this situation because that same band is where you get a lot of your vocal presence and clarity, as well. Using a simple EQ can remove the sibilance, but make your voice dull and lifeless in the process.
Old 16th September 2012
  #3
Gear Head
 
🎧 5 years
Right, I've tried eqing sibilant range frequencies before and I can't find that sweet spot of attenuation between taking out the sibilance and coloring the track badly. Does compression of higher frequencies really work better than subtractive eq? Also, is a plugin/outboard gear/etc that is specifically named a de-esser any better/different than just using a multi-band compressor?
Old 16th September 2012
  #4
Fhl
Lives for gear
 
Fhl's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
With all due respect, let's be honest. The lisp itself is the problem, and it cannot be removed with an EQ. If it was a simple sibilance problem, it would help with a de-esser, but this is frankly not the same.

I would focus 100% on recording all passes without a lips. Just like a guitar solo without random ghost notes. The end result will be a lot better no matter what.

Good luck
Old 17th September 2012
  #5
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
If de-essing has not worked for you with a dedicated plug or subtractive eq, have you tried to use those techniques in conjunction with volume automation on the vocal track?

It should be pretty clear where the lisp is happening and you can automate the volume down to reduce its presence.
Old 17th September 2012
  #6
Gear Maniac
 
soundinista's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I think a de-esser is very definitely what you don't want, if you lisp naturally. I have often found that heavy de-essing can impart a lispy sound to previously lispless vocals.

You need to increase sibilance. You could boost the sibilance region, (somewhere between 6-10k for most singers), and/or if that is too bright overall, then you could try setting a dynamic EQ, or multiband expander as a "re-esser". That could work if the sibilant S is present, just a bit weaker than you want, and the dynamic approach would need enough top-end spike present to trigger the detector. If not, you could perhaps duplicate the vocal track, cut all the lows and mids, and boost the most sibilant frequency before it hits the dynamic processor, via sidechain detection, which is over the normal vocal track. You obviously wouldn't want to hear this track in the mix.

If none of that works, or sounds too unnatural, or the S-sound really isn't much present at all, then all I can think of to do is fix it with laborious editing. If you can find one decent sounding S, then copy it in place of all the lispy ones. I've done this to replace sibilant esses, sometimes, when a few are badly sibilant, but most are okay, and I don't want to slam heavy processing over the whole thing to fix a few problems. This is normally easy to get away with - S sounds don't actually contain much vocal character, and are not perceptibly pitched, so one sounds much like another.

That would be boring, and time consuming, if there are a lot of lispy sounds, but possibly more natural-sounding than extremely heavy processing. If you really can't find even one decent S in the recording, then perhaps you just lisp, and I don't know what to suggest.

Unless you get someone else to record a perfect S into the same chain, and edit that in. That's going the extra mile or three. I'd only consider that for a lot of money, or as a labour of a lot of extremely profound and heartfelt love.
Old 17th September 2012
  #7
Lives for gear
 
Tinderwet's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Embrace your lisp. If you edit it out now, you'll have to edit it out later on every recording you make, and then if you'll ever have a live performance, you'll have to fight it again, and that'll be even harder to do. This is your voice, have fun with it!
Old 17th September 2012
  #8
Gear Maniac
 
AndreBenoit's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
I'm not sure it exists but you need the opposite of a de-esser! Ive over done it de-essing vocals in the past & found it made the singer sound like they had a lisp so I guess you need it's paradox!

Andre
Old 4th August 2020 | Show parent
  #9
Lives for gear
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by AndreBenoit ➑️
I'm not sure it exists but you need the opposite of a de-esser! Ive over done it de-essing vocals in the past & found it made the singer sound like they had a lisp so I guess you need it's paradox!

Andre
Yeah yeah years later I know but I thought it important to point out in the context of this thread that both S sounds and lisps are simply controlled white noise, with the S sounds biased toward the upper end of the spectrum. Which is what makes it so hard to capture ... if you can manually capture the lisp and harmonize it up an octave or so that might be a solution
Old 4th August 2020
  #10
Lives for gear
 
GeneHall's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Limetree ➑️
Okay, so I recorded myself doingthis piano/vocal recording extremely quickly, so there some pops and maybe even some clips in here, but I just needed a voice to practice with melodyne on. However, it did get me thinking, my words have always had a liitle minor lisp too em, like a little slurred edge thing to them, and I'm just wondering, is there a way to, I guess, and don't kill me here....."fix it in the mix".....rather than just requiring the artist improve?


http://soundcloud.com/ajn212/raining-in-baltimore-cover

(I don't know how else to upload this, the file is too big. )

The lisp of a vocalist can only be managed via vocal technique training. You will not be able to convincingly turn the recording into something it can never be, without training.
Lisps can be successfully managed with training.
Even radical bi-lateral cleft palletes can be trained to minimize the effect of the tiny hole in upper pallet or tongue deformities

That's the short brutal answer.

Making the best of it is tricky, unlike sybillance, which can be treated effectively/successfully because it isn't pitched, a lisp impacts consonants and syllables both and will exasperate sybillance.
Personally I find most singing lisps full of character and charm, with effective training it can really become something very special.
Melodyne 5 is probably the cleanest de-esser software out today, and it can really help in many other ways but I think the first thing to do is embrace the lisp. Hard work and it will cost you a few months of lessons but I think then you'll find a greater appreciation for your unique gift and be able to present your voice as you envision.
If your'e currently getting too much of what you don't like about your lisp at the capsules center, try going into an omni pattern and realign yourself just off center of the capsule, it might make it better or worse, but find out. The sweet spot is there for you too, it'll just be different to others sweet spot.
Nothing left to be "fixed in the mix" goes unpunished, imho
Old 5th August 2020 | Show parent
  #11
Gear Guru
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by soundinista ➑️
I think a de-esser is very definitely what you don't want, if you lisp naturally. I have often found that heavy de-essing can impart a lispy sound to previously lispless vocals.


this

I do this every semester for my audio students. I have an extremely sibilant radio commercial that I then de-ess. Then I crank up the de-esser until the "Hyundai SSSSsonata" turns into the Hyundai Thonata". Everyone laughs.

Terminology matters. Lisping is the opposite of sibilance. A de-esser will only make the lisping worse.
πŸ“ Reply

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