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Author Topic: Low End Blowout  (Read 11012 times)

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Offline mterry

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Low End Blowout
« on: April 26, 2024, 05:35:10 PM »
One thing I’ve notice since getting back into taping, are bands just throwing some absolute bass bombs. I had this happen to me in 2023 at Goose in Spokane and Phish in Nashville. I was taping FOB both shows, and for the phish show, I wasn’t the only one who suffered from massive distortion. Has this been more of an instance the last few years? Is it the curse
Of running up front? What is everyone doing to mitigate this shit storm of low end distortion that can’t be helped???
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Offline grawk

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2024, 05:48:49 PM »
peak at -18 instead of 0
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Offline nulldogmas

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2024, 06:05:18 PM »
I've noticed it at a few recent shows, but specifically with the kick drum. In both cases I ended up having to split the recording to stems and then apply an insanely aggressive EQ curve to the percussion stem only.

I can only assume this is venue sound engineers thinking it's their job to make audience members' teeth rattle, but I don't have any further info. (Similarly, I don't know when sound engineers started cranking the Shitty Reverb slider up to 11 on all vocals, but they can stop now, thanks.)

Offline fanofjam

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2024, 11:13:22 PM »
I'm not sure about it being a trend...but I haven't had any recording issues.  I also ride along at -12db and now that I have a Zoom F3 that I expect to use alot, I expect it to be even less of a possibility since I'll be recording in 32bit float. 
« Last Edit: April 26, 2024, 11:15:24 PM by fanofjam »

Offline breakonthru

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #4 on: April 26, 2024, 11:23:24 PM »
peak at -18 instead of 0
this. Sphere went +12dB at points

Offline fanofjam

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #5 on: April 26, 2024, 11:31:55 PM »
peak at -18 instead of 0
this. Sphere went +12dB at points

Did you see the clip going around about Drew Carey's Phish Sphere experience?  Loved it.  :)

Offline opsopcopolis

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #6 on: April 27, 2024, 12:45:57 AM »
Goose loves doing that shit. I find it kinda obnoxious. But yeah, no real reason to be peaking at 0, just run lower and you should be safe(er). Can always engage deck limiter right at 0 to save it from actually distorting if you're so inclined

Offline morst

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #7 on: April 27, 2024, 01:40:08 AM »
When I saw Hamilton in SF (Yes, Lin-Manuel Miranda's musical theatre production) there was one big bass bomb in each of the two acts every night.


Slightly off topic: Great interview with Hamilton touring sound mixer Kevin McCoy by Mythbuster Adam Savage here, but doesn't really mention the bass bombs
https://youtu.be/60OpF3DCVls?si=8CGVDzhBRaPRkmTA
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Offline flysquirrel

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #8 on: April 27, 2024, 03:53:22 PM »

Slightly off topic: Great interview with Hamilton touring sound mixer Kevin McCoy by Mythbuster Adam Savage here, but doesn't really mention the bass bombs
https://youtu.be/60OpF3DCVls?si=8CGVDzhBRaPRkmTA

Thanks for posting this, Morst.  I really enjoyed that behind-the-scenes glimpse.  It all seems easy until you realize how many DPAs must constantly be in the process of failing on any given night!     Also sent you a private message on an unrelated topic if you can take a look.


Offline breakonthru

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #9 on: April 27, 2024, 05:27:37 PM »
One thing I’ve notice since getting back into taping, are bands just throwing some absolute bass bombs. I had this happen to me in 2023 at Goose in Spokane and Phish in Nashville. I was taping FOB both shows, and for the phish show, I wasn’t the only one who suffered from massive distortion. Has this been more of an instance the last few years? Is it the curse
Of running up front? What is everyone doing to mitigate this shit storm of low end distortion that can’t be helped???
your 2012s are very sensitive to bass. Not as much as an Omni, but more than a cardioid or hyper/supercard

There’s really no penalty to having your levels peak lower with modern recording equipment. The noise floor of any decent recorder is well above that of the mics themselves. That’s apart from the noise of the crowd which is even higher

It’s not like the days of 16 bit recorders with noisy inputs. You can peak at -20 to -12 and come out with a great recording with no fear of clipping

Offline datbrad

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #10 on: April 28, 2024, 10:32:08 AM »
This is where using a low cut filter, either on the mics, the deck, or in post makes all the difference. If you look at the RMS (average gain level) of a concert recording, 60-70% of the waveform comes from sound below 1000 hz, and often most is concentrated below 100 hz. If you apply a high pass filter set at 100 hz, you will see the RMS drop by as much as 50%. The peak levels drop accordingly, since it's the low frequency part of a transient that drives the force of it. When we listen to music with our ears, we can hear the mid to high frequencies better because the bass resonates through our bodies without diminishing our ability to hear the higher frequencies at the same time. What all this means is bass is the main thing to control if you want to impact the overall gain, and stay clear of the overloading it can cause.
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Offline grawk

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2024, 10:37:04 AM »
I personally wouldn’t want to eliminate musical content when there is plenty of headroom to capture it all. But if your microphones are not capable of capturing information below 100 Hz without distortion, base rolloff would be a good choice.
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Offline Scooter123

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #12 on: April 28, 2024, 11:04:02 PM »
Yeah, many bands have a subwoofer located under the drummers seat or in his/her general area, with a bunch of large diameter, like 18" or 24" drivers which spew out nothing but irritating bass.  I have to wear ear plugs.  Ridiculous, actually. 
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Offline opsopcopolis

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #13 on: April 29, 2024, 12:28:33 AM »
Yeah, many bands have a subwoofer located under the drummers seat or in his/her general area, with a bunch of large diameter, like 18" or 24" drivers which spew out nothing but irritating bass.  I have to wear ear plugs.  Ridiculous, actually.

A well placed and configured drum sub should have essentially no effect on the audience at all. Just there to help the drummer feel their kick

Offline EmRR

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Re: Low End Blowout
« Reply #14 on: April 29, 2024, 08:12:55 AM »
Elvis Costello in Raleigh 2024 had the lows of the kick so hot it obscured his guitar and some of his vocal intelligibility.  Just bad mixing, might sound great at FOH but shit awareness of the room. I was upper level but i heard this from friends on the floor.
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