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Finalizer DRG = poor man's HEDD???
Old 28th September 2002
Here for the gear
🎧 15 years
Finalizer DRG = poor man's HEDD???

Well here's the dilemma: I am now officially addicted to the sound of the HEDD on my digital 2mix. I especially like the way it beefs up the drums. The problem is, sometimes the 'right' amount of HEDD for the main mix isn't the 'right' amount for the drum buss and vice versa.

I know, I know... I could always bounce the drum submix thru the HEDD and record it to a nu stereo track... but I HATE commitment! (not to mention the PITA of re-routing all my digital gear every time I need to bounce....)

Was briefly considering picking up a 2nd HEDD just for drum buss, but yikes, that sucka is ex-pen-sive for just a part-time drum phattener.

So my brainwave was.... waddabout picking up a used TC Finalizer (the old 48k barebones version, they are cheap now... <$500US) for exclusive drum buss duties? I used to stick one of those on drumz fulltime with the 'DRG' cranked up, and I recall it being very HEDD-like. Anyone tried this?

Opinions plz!
Old 29th September 2002
member no 666
Fletcher's Avatar
🎧 15 years
Take the time to run it through the HEDD processing... if you don't like it you can always do it again. The Finalizer thingy isn't going to get you where you really want to be if the HEDD is where you think you want to be.

Fear not commitment, it's a good thing (besides, you can always run the processed signal onto different tracks, leaving the original tracks for 'reprosessing at a later date' if you so desire).

Best of luck.
Old 30th September 2002
Here for the gear
🎧 15 years
Fletcher-- thanx 4 the reply. I hear what you're saying with the "fear not commitment" concept, i.e. just print the trax....... the problem is when I am trying to slam through a bunch of mixes in a day, taking the time to stop and unpatch-bounce-audition-repatch, ad infinitum, can be a real vibe killer.

My whole paradigm in setting up my DAW mixing environment, has been to gear towards 'instant gratification' as much as possible. There are friends of mine who get all fiddly with mouse-mixing, plug-in's and track bounces, etc. Me, I use a fairly idiosyncratic combo of computer, 'real' console and outboard gear that caters to my way of working-- i.e. 'instant gratification' with as little downtime/repatching/vibe-busting as possible. If I add some extra compressor/tape saturation "goosh" on the drum buss, I wanna hear how it is gonna interact with my mix buss comp, and I wanna hear it NOW, not in 10 minutes.

Hence I would REALLY like to get a hardware box that I can just leave on the drum buss already. And I just found an old Finalizer for $400 so I think I am gonna give it a go. The cool thing about the Finalizer is the way the DRG interacts on drums with the Soft Limit and Normalize features....for some reason that limiter really does cool things with the snare drum attack, sucking down the initial transient of the stick and mashing it into the overheads WITHOUT losing any smack or wallop on the snare or kik. Very cool, especially when ya dial up that 'DRG'......mmm, crunchy analog goodness. I've been able to get some real Andy Wallace-type tones out of it.

Anyway will try the Finalizer/HEDD combo and let you guys know how it works out. For $400 what have I got to lose, right?
Old 30th September 2002
Jules's Avatar
What will you about the latency on the unit?

I think you can get it down to 1ms (be carefull! Avoid the 10ms look ahead delay obviously!)

How will you hook it up?

I was very hooked on the DRG.. 5 or 6 on ALL mixes.

I keep threatening to get my unit (96k) out of mothballs as I have half a mind to get it into play with 24 bit 96k masters on my Masterlink, normalizing & "live" SRC and dither back to 16 bit 44.1 (but giving the metalic eq section & perhaps the compression section a skip...)

Old 1st October 2002
Here for the gear
🎧 15 years
Originally posted by Jules
What will you about the latency on the unit?

I think you can get it down to 1ms (be carefull! Avoid the 10ms look ahead delay obviously!)
I'm not too worried about latency as I plan on sending my entire drum mix thru it. I do remember actually using the lookahead feature before, seems like I could get more "smack" out of the limiter using it this way.... obviously I had to slide my drum tracks forward a bit, but no big deal. No multi-mic latency calculations or anything, it's just a 'drum buss master' type of thing.

How will you hook it up?
I am using 02R's with my Digital Performer rig, cool combo since I get real knobs (no 'mouse mixing' for me) and all the per-channel hardware DSP from the 02R's (EQ, gate, comp etc.) without bogging down my Mac at all. What I'll do is buss my drums to an output pair and then go out via AES/EBU to the Finalizer as an insert, then come back in thru one of the digital 'return' channels. That's the way I did it before anyways.... worked great!

So the cheapo used Finalizer is on its way... will post back with the results!

Thx 4 all comments!!!
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