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Author Topic: Post Processing - technique and ethics  (Read 8659 times)

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Offline twatts (pants are so over-rated...)

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #15 on: March 27, 2007, 06:25:06 PM »
I have a question of boojum:  what is the reasoning given at those "no-tampering" sites??? 

Terry



***Do you have PHISH, VIDA BLUE, JAZZ MANDOLIN PROJECT or any other Phish related DATs/Tapes/MDs that need to be transferred???  I can do them for you!!!***

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Offline boojum

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #16 on: March 27, 2007, 10:08:12 PM »
TW - Well, I get answers that differ, about the same as here.  One is they are mine to do with as I wish.  I record only bands who allow it.  And would only modify the tracks to correct for room or mic failings.  The other group says the original should never be touched.  I believed the "original should never be touched" stuff until I read DPA on cardioids: they need to be corrected to compensate for poor bass performance.  If DPA thinks this I would want to be very sure of myself before I would outright say they are wrong.  And the cardioid I have (ECM-MS957) has a poor bottom which is easily corrected with Audacity.  Not to make booming bass, but to make bass which can be heard just like in real life.  If there is an upright bass there, I want to be able to hear it in the recording just as I heard it in the performance.  Mics are not perfect.  Yes, I know my audio memory is not either.

Now at the venue the mind will compensate for a lot of audio flaws.  But the mic does not and has deficiencies and they all show up on the recording.  So, I think I should just tweak them a bit.  I like to keep it simple so I would be surprised if anyone would know the file had been tweaked if they were not told.  Yeah, yeah, I am sure every mixer junkie says the same thing; but I am different!  LOL

Comments??
Nov schmoz kapop.

Offline gratefulphish

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #17 on: March 27, 2007, 10:24:00 PM »
I am at the opposite end of the spectrum.  The TLM-170s pick up every bit of bass, both direct and reverberant.  I have taken to running them with the bass rolloff at the shows for starters.  Before that, if I did not use a high pass filter in post, the recordings were virtually unlistenable.  Once the HPF was applied, which then brought the gain of the high frequencies into alignment, the recordings sounded great.

I agree with the prior post, if those people don't like what we post, let them tape themselves.  Otherwise, I strive to put out the best recordings possible, have invested a whole lot of money and time doing it, spend hours afterward trying to ensure the recording sounds its best, and post it for others, and if some pickyass mother f%&8er wants to criticize that effort, then don't download my source.
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Offline eric.B

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #18 on: March 27, 2007, 11:06:26 PM »
fwiw, i dont perform any alterations whatsoever, including fades.   but then again, I havent taped in too many wretched conditions as of late..
We have a system that increasingly taxes work and subsidizes nonwork.  ~Milton Friedman

Offline momule

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #19 on: March 28, 2007, 02:18:52 AM »
Quote
The concensus over there is that you should try and circulate the unadultered files since "remastering" may not actually be a good thing (see any one of the tapers vs. remaster arguements on BT.ETREE, or the recent MarMar incident that got him to pull all his PH torrents).

Screw the purists, if they want a pure source hand them an SM-57 and a Sony cassette deck and send them on their way to tape to their hearts content.  Fact is; as a taper, we chose the damn equipment, picked the location, rolled the tape (or harddisc), usually enjoied the show less than others, and damnit if I want to apply compression, de-essing, mojo, pixie dust to a recording I'm gonna do it.  There are too many variables for any purist to think they can limit anything.  Next someone will tell me I can seed my tape because my cables weren't elevated on ceramic insulators and that the venue carpet acted as a dielectric and spoiled my source, ummmm....no.   

I do whatever I think sounds good, if someone else doesn't like it they can just be thankful that the majority of the western world doesn't pay per GB for downloads.

peace, chris

t's for the next few days
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huffy

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #20 on: March 28, 2007, 05:38:02 AM »
did y'all know?
comp/lim/lvlng and preamps predate any software
punch cards even.

because i already know how to power a vacuum tube with dc anyways
m-kay?

do you?
m-kay

mr slave what do they care about pv anyways?

who here keeps an un-sensored MASTER RECORDING of their stuff in as large a format real-estate wise that they can keep because it belongs to them and can't fit into any juke i ever got my ass drug into or drug my own ass into even if all they could play that on if i recorded in there may be an 8 track maybe...maybe...i do OWN a juke box that does play 78s and some play 45s too.
you should see my juke(not box it plays 45s too and i don't want it to werk...right now) sometime.

m-kay?
now mr slave can we move R U 1 ? back yet?

fades suck m-kay

who here knows anything about the stages of gain and how to use anything?
who knows this:
what is a master volume to you?
where is the new yokle you yokel?
« Last Edit: March 28, 2007, 05:59:25 AM by huffy »

Offline yousef

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #21 on: March 28, 2007, 05:47:28 AM »
When I first started taping, I tended to tweak every recording - I figured those EQ plug-ins were there to be used and the tapes sounded an awful lot better with a bit of a bass cut/treble boost, so why not?

Later (as I got better mics, probably), I stopped doing anything other than normalizing and fading - I wouldn't say I was a 'purist' but I was certainly taking into account my limited equipment and questionable skills. And the fact that if my masters ever go up in smoke, I'd like to have some decent copies of them in circulation so improved equipment and skills might one day do a better job.

But I was listening to BBC radio one night -and the BBC have, arguably, one of the best live music archives in the world- and heard Steve Lamacq say "there'll be a short delay before we bring you tonight's live set from ??????, the engineer is just applying a bit of EQ". Cue lightbulb above head - for all the expensive mics with proper placement, soundboard feeds etc etc that one would have in an ideal situation, the aim is to produce something that is pleasant to listen to. And for me that means that if a bit of EQ is needed, then have at it.

That said, I can understand policies such as the one you mention at this unnamed board - it seems that many people (and by this I refer mainly to the Dime leechers who can motivate themselves sufficiently to post comments on torrents) think that a "great recording" = zero bass and a treble boost that introduces appreciable amounts of hiss.

But I think the taper does have the prerogative to alter his recordings as he sees fit, even if the board doesn't permit other people to re-post "remastered" (what a hateful word in this context) versions of other people's stuff.

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Offline boojum

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #22 on: March 28, 2007, 11:52:05 AM »
Yousef - Well reasoned; well said.  I am pretty much of the same opinion.  That's why I think you're so damned smart.  LOL  Many, many professional recordings sound better because they have been tweaked some.  Live feeds also, as you have pointed out.  Aunty Beeb knows recording.  I do not like the current "hot" technique with a mic right on top of each instrument and then mixed with pan-potting to place them in the stereo field.  They sound to hot and have little or no ambience.  I guess most of us deal with ambience as we tape at the venue almost always and not in a studio.  And we generally use just the two mics. But I record in sleazy saloons with awful acoustics and sound systems placed in weird fashions and so on.  They do need some fixin' to sound right.

Now the difficult part is to apply the "fixin'" with a judicious hand.  Publishing in the recording chain what the mods are and making them with Audacity will allow any and all who wish to remove the mixing board adjustments the info they need.

Nov schmoz kapop.

Offline yousef

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #23 on: March 28, 2007, 04:44:26 PM »
Aunty Beeb knows recording.  I do not like the current "hot" technique with a mic right on top of each instrument and then mixed with pan-potting to place them in the stereo field.  They sound to hot and have little or no ambience. 

Interesting... You've made me realize that I haven't recorded any 'new' Beeb live broadcasts for a good few years now. I've grabbed a few sessions and keep my eye out for archival stuff but nothing new for quite a while. Must be getting old. :-\
music>other stuff>ears
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Offline db

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #24 on: March 28, 2007, 07:17:14 PM »
maybe ask them @ the website if they have a policy on what kind of mic configuration you have to use.
hypers or no?
are you allowed to apply a -10db pad? 

you are the author of that recording. it's all up to you. however from a taper-ethics p.o.v. you should say what you've done to it.
db

Offline boojum

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #25 on: March 28, 2007, 07:24:28 PM »
db - that is where I am at: make minimal mods to correct for venue or mic deficiencies and note them in the recordng chain info included in the upload.  So long as I do it in Audacity anyone can undo them.  That seems the best.   No tricky whiz-bang boxes, no snake oil machines, no smoke or mirrors, just the mixer board included in Audacity.     8)
Nov schmoz kapop.

Offline iriewsp

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #26 on: April 01, 2007, 06:59:17 AM »
Well personally I think if you are the engineer no one should tell you how to do your job.   You should be open to critic, and opinions, but never should you be told how to do your job. 

Granted any monkey can stand over a bag and make shure thier levels dont go over a certain point..  But most monkeys cant figure out why a certain mic config is good for certain situations and most monkeys cant tell you how to connect the gear or even consider the different options you go through when buying gear...   So I say, let the monkey call themselves purists..  They are still listening to digital media and you cant listen to digital media and call yourself and purist..  2:1 compression ratio might be lossless but any purist wouldnt have anything to do with file compression.

Overall if you want to have controll over what is done to a recording after the show and before it hits the masses, buy yourself a rig and learn how to use it and the software involved in getting it up and out to the masses..

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Offline mrruin

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #27 on: April 03, 2007, 07:41:24 AM »
I recently discovered compressor, limiter and EQ plugins and have been playing around with them quite a bit. I love it, it improves the sound of my recordings so much its incredible. You can really add juce to your sound with this software. I do not feel limited by my rig anymore which is great since I have hit a wall gear wise. For stealthing your options are just very limited.

I can understand the "no alterations" approach, it makes sense in a way. But in the end of the day I ask myself: Why do I tape? Why did I start? And what was I thinking when I was "on the other end", read a fan of a band going to a concert hoping for a recording?

I want as many people (or fans) to listen to my recordings (if they are good) as possible because it will make them happy to have a memory of this show available. I was always so grateful if I could snag a recording of a show I attended. And the most imprtant thing: Make it a pleasent listening experience, make it loud enough to play well on a bad to medium system, make it listenable on a portable system. To archive that you almost have to use post processing.

Not to mention its fun to experiment with audio software :) And fun is why we are here, right?

And recently I even allowed mp3 versions of my shows. Its the ultimate sin I know, but honestly, people will spread it in mp3 anyway and if thats what they want to use then they should go ahead and use it. Who am I to "forbid" it? If they want a better version they know where to get it.

Allright this turned into a bit of a ramble...
« Last Edit: April 03, 2007, 07:49:48 AM by mrruin »
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Offline landshark

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #28 on: April 03, 2007, 01:27:13 PM »
I guess it comes down to why you like to tape live shows, or maybe more significantly, why you like to share them on ETree.  If you're sharing on ETree to share the most enjoyable version of a live show from an artist you like, then bring on the whole paintbox of possibility.  If you're sharing to compare technical field recording skill, then by all means keep it sparse.  As long as you're clear what you did, the purists don't have to download your stuff.

My gear is mid-low (although getting better), and I usually tape friends' bands and small bands playing in mid-small venues (approx. 400-800 capacity).  Now I don't know why, but it seems most of those venues sound like your mics are at the bottom of a tub of Creamed Wheat - heavy, thudding bass, muddy mids, and highs that are too dependent on mic placement.  Given those factors (bad gear and bad venues), I'm pretty reliant on post- to get my recordings to come out well, although I try to limit it to some EQ and a little compression.  Of course, when I share my recordings with the artists themselves, THEY are happy I did a lot of post work.  They're just looking for a good sound, not some abstract idea of purity.  If the venue sounds like crud because the sound guy overamped the lows to give the crowd a pulsing dance feel, that's not what the artisits want to hear - they want to hear a clean recording.

Personally, I record for me and my friends.  I'm not interested in some junk-measuring contest where an elitist snob with 5x the $$ worth of gear I have is crying foul because my recording sounds better than his due to me doing some modification to the sound in post.

Ever look at a soundboard?  Plenty of EQ options there - any band has to be "tuned" to the venue and some sound guys do better than others.  I'm never going to compromse my enjoyment of a tape because the sound guy's idea of "good sound" is radically different than mine.

I guess I won't be posting to ETree any time soon, if that's their policy.  And are you seriously suggesting the majority of people who download from ETree want an archival pure copy of the feed because they have a copy of Audacity or Soundforge and want to apply their custom post-editing?  I may just suck at it, but it takes me a couple hours of experimentation between different compressors, EQ settings, etc. before I find what I think works best.  I for one prefer not having to muck about with anything I download from ETree - I only invest that time and effort into my own creations.

Just one man's opinion, I may be wrong...

ps. I've never actually put my mics in a tub of Creamed Wheat...<grin>
pps. If you can use VST plugins, check out Digitalfishphone's Endorphin compressor - great for cleaning up muddy venues, and it's free! http://www.digitalfishphones.com/main.php?item=2&subItem=3

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Offline twatts (pants are so over-rated...)

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Re: Post Processing - technique and ethics
« Reply #29 on: April 03, 2007, 01:58:31 PM »
I guess I won't be posting to ETree any time soon, if that's their policy.

ETREE doesn't forbid post-processed shows.  The only things banned by ETREE are lossy files.

Terry


***Do you have PHISH, VIDA BLUE, JAZZ MANDOLIN PROJECT or any other Phish related DATs/Tapes/MDs that need to be transferred???  I can do them for you!!!***

I will return your DATs/Tapes/MDs.  I'll also provide Master FLAC files via DropBox.  PM me for details.

Sony PCM R500 > SPDIF > Tascam HD-P2
Nakamichi DR-3 > (Oade Advanced Concert Mod) Tascam HD-P2
Sony MDS-JE510 > Hosa ODL-276 > Tascam HD-P2

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