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Author Topic: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience  (Read 4053 times)

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Offline dallman

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This thread is here for anyone interested or already recording in 32bit Float to share gtheir experiences thoughts, ideas, techniques, questions so we may all benefit and learn through experiences abouit 32bit Float recording:

Please resist the urge to hijack, there are plenty of threads for those pro, con or unhappy.

To keep it simple, I'll start over:

I thought with a few new decks having 32bit float recording and more coming, it might be nice to have a thread dedicated to recording with this process. There are plenty of threads debating the merits and features of the decks but many of us are interested in focusing on how these decks record in 32bit float and what the results are, so I thought this might be useful.

I used my MixPre6 II on Saturday to record Gov't Mule. I ran hotter than I ever had, and I did lower the levels about 2db after the first song which was in the red the entire time. My goal was to run hot, but not super in the red at all times hot. I ran 4 channels, Schoeps MK41's Hypercardioid, and Superlux S502 Cardioid. Here are my thoughts:

I started recording in 1971. It was really hard, really hard to watch levels run regularly in the red after 48 years of avoiding the red. I did it, but I figured how hot to run will be a gradual process.

The results though were excellent! There was nothing even close to distortion. I opened in Soundforge which is what I like to use nest. I transferred the poly file to a stereo file for the Schoeps and a stereo file for the Superlux. On both files I lowered the gain on the first song 2 db and then the entire file another 2 db. The files looked perfect and sounded great. I see obvious advantages, especially when the levels at the start of the show are much hotter than expected.

The learning curve might just be does anything matter? Is any gain too much? Do I care that I have to lower the gain in post if it sounds great? Will it at any point with high hot gain sound compressed? These seem to be the details that we will all be looking at, and there probably will be a few differing opinions just like in all of our recording techniques. However, there is much more freedom. After 48 years I do not make too many mistakes and I know my mics and most local rooms, but...this was really cool, I totally look forward to using the deck more. Tonight, I will record 6 channels at a DSO show with different mics and while I do not plan to run superhot, will push my levels into the red with confidence.

To add: The DSO show sounds great. Not necessarily different than if I recorded at 24bit, but the room and volume of the show was louder than usual for the venue and that did not matter to me, I didn't need to worry. Also in post I need not worry about levels being too low. Personally I do not like to normalize as it makes my ears get tired, so sometimes if needed I play with the levels of each song especially if I recorded conservatively and the process is time consuming. I no longer have that problem, or maybe I'll still be adjusting in the future but that might be more about the difference between say an acoustic or very quiet song versus the loudest of the sets songs. I'll try to post the visual from Soundforge when I have an opportunity.
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Offline darby

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2019, 12:10:50 PM »
Only 2 shows so far, but I ran my levels conservative and boosted in post with no issues, which is something I did not like to do.
In 24 bit, I ran hot and relied on my limiters to capture what I felt was a more accurate dynamic range.
I liked the original MixPre series, but thought the limiters engaged too early. It was nice to run without limiters.
The new series does allow more adjustment to the limiters in 24 bit, but I really like not having to use them.
I feel my 2 recordings have a nice sound to them after boosting, and I think i will continue to run that way on my next shows.

Offline dallman

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2019, 04:19:22 PM »
Only 2 shows so far, but I ran my levels conservative and boosted in post with no issues, which is something I did not like to do.
In 24 bit, I ran hot and relied on my limiters to capture what I felt was a more accurate dynamic range.
I liked the original MixPre series, but thought the limiters engaged too early. It was nice to run without limiters.
The new series does allow more adjustment to the limiters in 24 bit, but I really like not having to use them.
I feel my 2 recordings have a nice sound to them after boosting, and I think i will continue to run that way on my next shows.
It would be interesting to run 2 decks same mics one hot, one conservative and then boost or lower to the same levels and compare. According to what is being preached, they would be as identical as you'd get in that type of real world scenario, but that is the sort of thing which I hope comes to light as more samples and styles get discussed. I always ran the reverse of you, conservative with the boost of gain in post. Now I'm going hot and bringing it down (or I assume I'll bring it down as I'm going to try and track them tonight, but even with the files looking huge and foreboding, they sound great, no distortion or compression at all, nice dynamic range.
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Offline dallman

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2019, 04:58:18 PM »
Here is a picture of the wave as recorded Neumann SKM 185 Hypercardioid to MixPre6II Set 1 Dark Star Orchestra First Ave Mpls MN Sept 30 2019. The second shot is after lowering 4.5db. I hope to track and upload this and Gov't Mule from Sept 28 tonight or tomorrow.
« Last Edit: October 02, 2019, 08:03:52 AM by dallman »
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Offline heathen

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2019, 01:19:14 PM »
It would be interesting to see/hear your results if you purposefully set your levels way too low and then have to boost them in post.
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Offline voltronic

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2019, 08:02:04 PM »
It would be cool to hear some samples from people who own 32-bit float recorders.

I am especially interested in hearing things with quick changes in dynamic extremes, to hear how seamless the hand-off between ADCs is (or isn't).
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Offline Gordon

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2019, 08:29:32 PM »
got my second mixpre 6 II (1st was defective) and tested it out just recording the stereo.  for parts I cranked the gain all the way hitting +15 or so over and some I had it at -30 or so.  as expected the +15 was heavily distorted and the -30 was barely audible.  Both sounded perfect when getting them to about -1 or so.
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Offline jerryfreak

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2019, 08:46:06 PM »
It would be interesting to see/hear your results if you purposefully set your levels way too low and then have to boost them in post.
ive done that a lot with mics right into ad2k peaking below -30

sounds the same for our application, really. no audible noise
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Offline dallman

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #8 on: October 05, 2019, 10:56:31 PM »
Here are two recordings (Gov't Mule and Dark Star Orchestra) that started life as 32Bit Float/ 48kHz recordings:

http://bt.etree.org/details.php?torrentId=607192

https://archive.org/details/dso2019-09-30.from32bitfloat_Neumann
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Offline voltronic

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #9 on: October 27, 2019, 12:30:11 PM »
Here's a short sample of a marching band show I recorded yesterday.  32-bit float recording has made this SO much easier to no longer worry about levels.


This is the original 32-bit float / 48 kHz WAV.  Nothing has been done to it except a level adjustment of about -10 dB in RX.

https://we.tl/t-vGQHM3iOET (expires in 7 days)

Details:
High school football stadium
Rig at the very top of bleachers at 50
Pit instruments (mallets, synths) are amplified through portable PA stacks on field, near each 25 yd line.  Everything else is acoustic.

Chain:
Line Audio CM3 in SRS Hybrid Mount (110 deg; 30 cm)
Movo WST50 windscreens
Zoom F6 at 32-bit float / 48 kHz

EDIT: Fixed upload.
« Last Edit: October 28, 2019, 07:01:30 PM by voltronic »
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Offline shijan

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #10 on: October 28, 2019, 01:09:07 AM »
Something wrong. Link already expired
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Offline voltronic

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #11 on: October 28, 2019, 07:01:44 PM »
Something wrong. Link already expired

Just uploaded again with another service.
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Offline Ozpeter

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #12 on: October 29, 2019, 02:09:26 AM »
Heh, well that's peaky stuff!  Here I had to add considerable amounts of HF boost for it to sound "right" but that's probably down to my 70 year old seriously shot ears.  BTW it played just fine in "VU Player" - I wasn't sure whether the 32 bits might cause a problem.  (And right now I'm updating from version 2.49 to version 4.8!)

Offline shijan

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #13 on: October 29, 2019, 02:56:51 AM »
My guess shared file was unprocessed 32 bit source, it needs to be adjusted and compressed. Same goes to 24 bit recordings captured with low levels to avoid clipping.
Here is my very basic attempt to adjust file in Reaper. Source file gain was boosted +20, and Limiter was applied to Master Track. As a result - loud, but same time distortion free output.
https://i.imgur.com/jorv9zz.jpg
https://www.dropbox.com/s/3nxd6g3k4xij5qp/191026_002excerpt-processed.mp3?dl=0
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Offline voltronic

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Re: Recording with gear using 32bit Float - The Recording Experience
« Reply #14 on: October 29, 2019, 06:51:36 AM »
My guess shared file was unprocessed 32 bit source, it needs to be adjusted and compressed. Same goes to 24 bit recordings captured with low levels to avoid clipping.
Here is my very basic attempt to adjust file in Reaper. Source file gain was boosted +20, and Limiter was applied to Master Track. As a result - loud, but same time distortion free output.
https://i.imgur.com/jorv9zz.jpg
https://www.dropbox.com/s/3nxd6g3k4xij5qp/191026_002excerpt-processed.mp3?dl=0

Surely you mean +2, and not +20 dB?  The peak value of the excerpt I posted is between -3 and -2 (don't remember exactly, and not at that PC).
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I am hitting my head against the walls, but the walls are giving way.    ///    If a composer could say what he had to say in words he would not bother trying to say it in music.
- Gustav Mahler

 

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