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Waves L2 hardware Vs Software - interesting!
Old 9th April 2003
  #1
Waves L2 hardware Vs Software - interesting!

http://duc.digidesign.com/cgi-bin/ub...;f=16;t=018572

Have a look here and report back thoughts..

Old 9th April 2003
  #2
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e-cue's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Not only do I refuse to click a "duc" link on general principle, but I've been banned over there a few many too times (over a year ago). dfegad duck
Old 9th April 2003
  #3
OK, well there is a view expressed that there is zero differnce in sound between the two. Hardly front page news but a lot of folk were wondering..

Old 9th April 2003
  #4
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toledo3's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Am I tripping out, or wasn't there an article somewhere, where they were saying that they had to "dummy" down the code? Not saying that means that they would sound different though.
Old 9th April 2003
  #5
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Albert's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
The comparison test being discussed in that thread was quite unscientific and they way they cut the song together using hardware and software L2 would make it hard to compare the two in my opinion. I didn't find anything particularily enlightening about their brief discussion, to be perfectly frank.

That said, it wouldn't surprise me at all if the plugin sounds very similar or practically identical to the hardware. I see them as two different products with different uses. I love my hardware L2, and use it for the converters, and also when tracking. That's in addition to the typical uses like limiting when mixing or mastering, where you would also use the plugin.

However, since I have not yet heard *any* plugin that sounds as good as hardware to my ears, I would have to assume that there may be some slight difference with the L2 as well. I haven't done A/B testing however, so that's just an uninformed opinion.

I guess my comments aren't particularily enlightening either, so there!
Old 9th April 2003
  #6
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NathanEldred's Avatar
 
7 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
I've got the L2 software. For a while I thought it was pretty good. Anything that touches it has that signature smeared L2 sound regardless of whether we want to split fine hairs or not between hardware or software. For a long time I was using the Sonic Timeworks mastering limiter. I had been replacing it with the L2 and things didn't get better. A few days a go I went back and replaced a few mastering jobs I did with the ST limiter, apples and oranges compared to the L2. The Timeworks blew it away. Better clarity, low end was tighter and clearer, I could easily pick out the instruments in the stereo positioning far better than with the Waves L2, the reverbs were almost destroyed on the L2 compared to the Sonic Timeworks. I could get the ST just as loud or louder and it sounded far more natural...definitely squashed, but not at the sake of the clarity. Some food for thought....I sell Waves, and I don't sell ST.
Old 9th April 2003
  #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by NathanEldred
I've got the L2 software. For a while I thought it was pretty good. Anything that touches it has that signature smeared L2 sound regardless of whether we want to split fine hairs or not between hardware or software. For a long time I was using the Sonic Timeworks mastering limiter. I had been replacing it with the L2 and things didn't get better. A few days a go I went back and replaced a few mastering jobs I did with the ST limiter, apples and oranges compared to the L2. The Timeworks blew it away. Better clarity, low end was tighter and clearer, I could easily pick out the instruments in the stereo positioning far better than with the Waves L2, the reverbs were almost destroyed on the L2 compared to the Sonic Timeworks. I could get the ST just as loud or louder and it sounded far more natural...definitely squashed, but not at the sake of the clarity. Some food for thought....I sell Waves, and I don't sell ST.

The Sonic Timeworks is one of my favorites also.

Too bad they can't port it over to the Mac.
Old 9th April 2003
  #8
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vtone's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by thethrillfactor
The Sonic Timeworks is one of my favorites also.

Too bad they can't port it over to the Mac.
maybe this should be a new thread, but what L2 alternatives are there for mac?
Old 9th April 2003
  #9
Gear Addict
 
🎧 15 years
The L2 always seemed to me to put a "flavor" on everything.

On a whim I just self mastered a record and used some outboard gear going into a Spider using the channel limiters to squash. HOLY COW what a difference. It made the waveforms look like 2x4's but I'll be danged if I can hear it. Also gave me the options of putting some "tape" algorithm on it. I think I'll be getting the benchmark DAC-1 to up my D/A for mastering like this.
Old 9th April 2003
  #10
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7 Reviews written
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Quote:
Originally posted by thethrillfactor
The Sonic Timeworks is one of my favorites also.

Too bad they can't port it over to the Mac.
It would probably be worth it for Mac users to get a cheap PC with Samp 7.0 & ST just for mastering purposes (both on PC only, and both quite incredible IMO for digital purposes). It doesn't take a very powerful PC to run a few manipulated stereo tracks and a few plugs ins....an old 800 PIII or so would do fine.
Old 9th April 2003
  #11
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4 Reviews written
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Quote:
Originally posted by vtone
maybe this should be a new thread, but what L2 alternatives are there for mac?
There aren't that many.

There is the Emagic limiter in Waveburner Pro. As long as you don't push it too hard, it does fine. At times I've gotten better CD's with it than the L2.

There are the limiters in SPark XL and Master X5.

The other is the limiter in Sonic SolutionsHD, probably one of the best out there, but with out the hardware you are screwed.

Right now the best mastering plugs are on the PC platforms. 64 bit as compared to 48 bit/32 bit in Mac.
Old 9th April 2003
  #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by thethrillfactor


Right now the best mastering plugs are on the PC platforms. 64 bit as compared to 48 bit/32 bit in Mac.
And they just plain sound better, regardless of math specs.
Old 9th April 2003
  #13
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4 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by NathanEldred
And they just plain sound better, regardless of math specs.
Hey Nathan,

This has a lot to do with it.

By the way, what sound card are using with the Samplitude?

Lynx Two?
Old 10th April 2003
  #14
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7 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by thethrillfactor
Hey Nathan,

This has a lot to do with it.

Maybe, but if you took two plug ins with identical 'specs' and one was obviously better than the other, I think the credit lies in the skills and ears of the programmer. The guys from ST are superior in that department. Eventually everything will be '64 bit' but there will still clearly be winners and losers.

Quote:

By the way, what sound card are using with the Samplitude?

Lynx Two?


I've got a Hammerfall 96/52 (24 channels of lightpipe i/o w/ WC i/o) and an SEKD Prodif Pro (2 channels of AES i/o, WC i/o, 8 channels of lightpipe i/o). I use external conversion and WC source derived either from the Mytek or Crane Song.
Old 10th April 2003
  #15
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Waves Masters Bundle in general

I must admit, I bought the Maasters bundle a while back having been very impressed with the demos. As time has passed, I have grown increasingly disenchanted with it. I have now almost totally stopped using any of the plug ins, and go instead to things like DUY tape and shape. Its one of those things I really wish I hadnt bought and wish I had the money back.

Oh well, you cant win em all can you.

J
Old 10th April 2003
  #16
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4 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by NathanEldred
Maybe, but if you took two plug ins with identical 'specs' and one was obviously better than the other, I think the credit lies in the skills and ears of the programmer. The guys from ST are superior in that department. Eventually everything will be '64 bit' but there will still clearly be winners and losers.





I've got a Hammerfall 96/52 (24 channels of lightpipe i/o w/ WC i/o) and an SEKD Prodif Pro (2 channels of AES i/o, WC i/o, 8 channels of lightpipe i/o). I use external conversion and WC source derived either from the Mytek or Crane Song.
Nathan,

Have u tried the Sonic Timeworks 480L reverb plug in?
Old 10th April 2003
  #17
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Nutmeg II.'s Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I know, that at least one of te ME at Sterling-Sound uses Sequoia V6 which is a close relative of Samplitute.
Old 11th April 2003
  #18
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🎧 15 years
is the dithering in the Timeworks mastering compressor better also?

has anyone tried the Timeworks ReverbX..pretty good reverb but a resource HOG!!!
Old 12th April 2003
  #19
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7 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by thethrillfactor
Nathan,

Have u tried the Sonic Timeworks 480L reverb plug in?
Yes, it's pretty good. Their Reverb X is better to my ears (it's a later development, so it makes sense that it is). Their 480 sytle verb is not as good as something like the Kurzweil KSP-8 (duh), but I think it will be at least 5 years before plugs even come close and computers have the capability to handle that type of load.
Old 12th April 2003
  #20
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4 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by NathanEldred
Yes, it's pretty good. Their Reverb X is better to my ears (it's a later development, so it makes sense that it is). Their 480 sytle verb is not as good as something like the Kurzweil KSP-8 (duh), but I think it will be at least 5 years before plugs even come close and computers have the capability to handle that type of load.
I tried it today by the way.

It sounds closer to the PCM 91 than the 480L.

Which is not bad considering it is a plug.

The hard part about emulating a 480L is the sound is in the converters themselves, not just in the math.

This goes for a lot of the classic older units.
Old 12th April 2003
  #21
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Wiggy Neve Slut's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I must admit never beeing much a of a digital fan and a general digtial luddite but i got to sit in on a mates mastering session last week in thier studio, where they had access tothe HW L2. It sounds good and a little goes a long way. However it has the power to make the mixes or whatever as loud, punchy etc and '2x4' waveform like!. It was compressed but didn't sound too bad and now i really know how the level really gets up there.. and this puppy is the main offender. I have no experience with the plug in so i cant comment but as a digital box it was pretty good and would use one in the future..

PEACE
Wiggy
Old 12th April 2003
  #22
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Skwaidu's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Hmmm. What do you all think about just smashing the converters?
Now that IS brick- wall limiting.

Seriously, a friend of mine has demoed me his thing and at least with transient- heavy, beat- dominant music you get a louder mix with superior sound compared to the Waves L1/L2 thing, which does smear things quite a lot.

He mixed a club- stylish pop track and made a home reference CD with original and "demo- mastered" versions. The song went to mastering. His demo- master sounded better than the "real" master and went to radio...

He just put the track through 2 Renaissance Compressors-> DAC-> Gain just before AUDIBLE clipping-> Smashing the ADC. And with DIGI 001 converters! Listening with NS-10's... And it does sound good.

(My own addition: if you use dithering from 24 to 16 for a reference CD when it is full scale a lot like in this instance, I've found the Waves IDR can't handle it. Strange clicks and pops. On the other hand, a L1+ with the dynamic controls on zero dithers it fine... With the same IDR algorithm. Hmm.)

Any thoughts?

-Mikko
Old 14th April 2003
  #23
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vtone's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by Skwaidu
(My own addition: if you use dithering from 24 to 16 for a reference CD when it is full scale a lot like in this instance, I've found the Waves IDR can't handle it. Strange clicks and pops. On the other hand, a L1+ with the dynamic controls on zero dithers it fine... With the same IDR algorithm. Hmm.)
I have noticed this as well. are you referring to the L2 hardware vs. the software?
Old 16th April 2003
  #24
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visi's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by thethrillfactor
The Sonic Timeworks is one of my favorites also.

Too bad they can't port it over to the Mac.
Well, you could use Sonic Timeworks plug-ins on the Mac, including the Mastering Compressor, with a Creamware DSP card. IMHO, the STW plug-ins sound even slightly better on that platform than their native counterparts.

cheers,
vincent
Old 23rd August 2003
  #25
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Hey Sly
You wanna sell your masters bundle?
Old 23rd August 2003
  #26
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Renie's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
There are RTAS Mac Sonic Timeworks plugs demos on their site.http://www.sonictimeworks.com/demos....c74e6a6cd9ee6c
Old 23rd August 2003
  #27
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🎧 15 years
Does anyone use the L1 or L2 just for it's dithering and shaping rather than for it's purportedly coloured limiting? What other options do you use for dithering down after mastering?
Old 23rd August 2003
  #28
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🎧 15 years
While I'm on a roll, here goes.

As far as the L2 plugin, I guess it's all relative. By simply pushing the gain over the top on Paris' 2 bus, I can decimate what an L2 can do. Louder, waaaaaaay cleaner, phatter. No comparison. So relatively speaking, I think the thing chugs pig swill, hardware or software.

For digital compression that fails to suck, the TC 6000 is pretty good, though it still has it's own "sound" it imparts. The KSP8 is not so bad either, with less of it's own sound and more neutral. But I simply load up the 2 bus in Paris more often than using even those 2 boxes these days. Just works better.

And now, somebody needs to tell me to shutup about my derelict DAW again. However, a wise person might consider that a used EDS card and MEC I/O could be had for $500-700 US and might consider jacking his final stereo 24 bit output through the thing, in realtime while mixing, much to his own delight. Instant 1/2" ATR102 in a box.

Naaaaaaa.

In any event, much like a record deal, no compression is better than bad compression. If you don't have the jack to have something really good to use (and I well remember those days myself), just mix clean and punchy and let a mastering guy with good gear handle the 2 bus. The L2 may sound louder while you sit there and A/B, but in the real world, I think the thing sounds tiny. Small. Thin. Bad.


Regards,
Brian T
Old 23rd August 2003
  #29
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e-cue's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by triez
Does anyone use the L1 or L2 just for it's dithering and shaping rather than for it's purportedly coloured limiting? What other options do you use for dithering down after mastering?
No way. Not here at least. Anytime you do fade outs or music at low levels, you hear the dither sputter in and out. Crank your monitors next time you do a fade out and egads...

One of there endorsers told me they were discontinuing the hardware units. I think he was b.s.in' me. I asked around, and he's the only person that mentioned this rumor.
Old 23rd August 2003
  #30
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e-cue's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally posted by BrianT
By simply pushing the gain over the top on Paris' 2 bus, I can decimate what an L2 can do. Louder, waaaaaaay cleaner, phatter. No comparison. So relatively speaking, I think the thing chugs pig swill, hardware or software.
*snarfs a.m. beer all over keyboard*

Brian, we all know you love paris n all but, do you understand what you are doing when you slam your digital 2 mix?
πŸ“ Reply

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