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Author Topic: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)  (Read 970 times)

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Offline detroit lightning

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I have a recording that is about 3db off between channels, and also a bit bass heavy. I'm using audacity and eventually found running the high pass filter at 120 / 6db pretty satisfactory. Would be the right sequence to balance the tracks & apply the EQ?

Thanks!

Offline heathen

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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2020, 02:54:27 PM »
Just throwing this out there, but if you're not already aware this is a great EQ plugin for Audacity: https://www.tokyodawn.net/tdr-nova/
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Offline detroit lightning

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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #2 on: August 06, 2020, 03:03:53 PM »
Just throwing this out there, but if you're not already aware this is a great EQ plugin for Audacity: https://www.tokyodawn.net/tdr-nova/

Awesome - thank you! Will definitely check this out. Any tips on using it? I haven't went too far into EQ, but realize I have a lot to gain by trying...so this is good timing.

Offline jerryfreak

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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2020, 03:49:53 PM »
i always normalize last, because a lot of processes will change the levels

i also always EQ both channels independently to same RMS volume, regardless of how far they are off (say just 1 dB vs 3-6dB, same process)
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Offline heathen

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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2020, 04:15:51 PM »
Just throwing this out there, but if you're not already aware this is a great EQ plugin for Audacity: https://www.tokyodawn.net/tdr-nova/

Awesome - thank you! Will definitely check this out. Any tips on using it? I haven't went too far into EQ, but realize I have a lot to gain by trying...so this is good timing.

Experiment with it.  That's what I've done (of course reading the documentation is also an option, but where's the fun in that).  Something that's been particularly useful is the dynamic EQ it can do.  Once you get it installed just mess with it a bunch.
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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2020, 07:15:35 PM »
Good advice above.  I'll just add that straight high-pass filtering may do the job but is something of a blunt instrument.  Try a shelf filter or playing around with a combination of filters to see if you can reduce the over-heaviness without as much damage to everything down there.  As mentioned dynamic EQ can be very useful for bass issues, but you really want to be able to tune it appropriately and that requires basic parametric EQ manipulation skills (although a dynamic EQ may use simpler to handle shelf filters as well). 

High pass filtering has its place, but I think its frequently overused, especially when monitoring over small speakers that have issues down low.  Much big liveness fullness and impact lives and dies in the lower frequencies.
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Offline detroit lightning

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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #6 on: August 06, 2020, 08:24:13 PM »
Good advice above.  I'll just add that straight high-pass filtering may do the job but is something of a blunt instrument.  Try a shelf filter or playing around with a combination of filters to see if you can reduce the over-heaviness without as much damage to everything down there.  As mentioned dynamic EQ can be very useful for bass issues, but you really want to be able to tune it appropriately and that requires basic parametric EQ manipulation skills (although a dynamic EQ may use simpler to handle shelf filters as well). 

High pass filtering has its place, but I think its frequently overused, especially when monitoring over small speakers that have issues down low.  Much big liveness fullness and impact lives and dies in the lower frequencies.

Appreciate the feedback, and you're definitely correct - I'm really just using what I know, which is limited. So I suppose I need to put in some time to get a bit more advanced. Just like anything, a few tricks here and there can make all the difference.

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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2020, 02:47:10 PM »
Always save an original unaltered version of the recording your working on.  Save the one your tweaking as 'band_date_v2' or something so that way you can always start from scratch if you decide your modifications aren't working to your satisfaction.
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Offline jerryfreak

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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2020, 07:14:00 PM »
Always save an original unaltered version of the recording your working on.  Save the one your tweaking as 'band_date_v2' or something so that way you can always start from scratch if you decide your modifications aren't working to your satisfaction.

this has proven invaluable for me, esp as i got better with my psot-processign techniques over the years

i can go back to an older recordign and get better results in a fraction of the time with the skills i have gained
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Offline checht

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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #9 on: August 15, 2020, 08:41:45 PM »
When starting w eq, I found 2 things super helpful:

1. Reading about what sounds are where in the freq spectrum. EQ cheat sheets are a thing: https://cheatography.com/fredv/cheat-sheets/eq-tips/  I can't find the other ones that I used, which were more graphically oriented.

2. Playing around with a spectral analyzer/editor. Nothing like selecting a freq range visually and listening to just that range to teach you where various instruments are, and vocals, in your own recordings. Also helps for finding where boom and mud are in the bass, or strident/brittle high end..

PS: TDR also make my favorite sounding compressor to use with Audacity, Kotelnikov. Simple to use, too. Fish Rabbi turned me on to it and now I use it for parallel compression on most recordings' 16/44 version. Makes a huge difference for ear buds, car, and other non-optimal listening.

PPS: You need a high quality reference playback system to learn eq. You have to be able to keep one of the sound variables stable or changes are confounded and you'll have a hard time connecting cause to effect. Doesn't have to be crazy spendy. An external DAC w headphone amp, and some reasonable headphones can work. I primarily use massdrop x akg k7xx red edition, and then check w massdrop x sennheiser hd 58x jubilee headphones. Both under $200. Of course I also check on living room system and in care. Learn how a reference system sounds, and work from there.

Have fun with it, give yourself tons of time to play, and it'll start to make sense.



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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #10 on: August 16, 2020, 12:49:35 AM »
I have a recording that is about 3db off between channels, and also a bit bass heavy. I'm using audacity and eventually found running the high pass filter at 120 / 6db pretty satisfactory. Would be the right sequence to balance the tracks & apply the EQ?
I think that makes more sense than trying to work on something which is noticiably unbalanced
seriously, VOTE!

Offline Scooter123

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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #11 on: August 22, 2020, 02:45:57 PM »
In reading the JEMS Info Files and speaking with "E" of JEMS, they start every audience recording with three standard runs on RX7.  "E" told me to fun the first three at a fairly nominal level and increase only as necessary:

De-Click

Azmuth

Phase

From there

Normalize to a set db level to consistent level on your tape

Then the fun begins, again usually in RX7 like Spectral Analysis and dealing with specifics such as wind noise, voice chatter, clapping specific to your tape

I will say that Steinberg's Spectral Layers7, which is fairly new, has an amazing isolation/stem feature, shockingly not present on RX7 for keyboards, but I've been told that RX7's is better for everything other than keyboards.  I used Spectral Layers yesterday and confirmed the keyboard function is indeed amazing. 

In short, RX7 is your friend.  I will say that the work in RX7 is very slow as each function for a one hour tape may take an hour or two, depending on how deep your modification is.  Spectral Layers is much faster, but I suspect not as good as RX7.   I'm totally new to the Steinberg product. 
Regards,

Scooter123

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Offline Gutbucket

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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #12 on: August 31, 2020, 08:54:18 AM »
Curious about Spectra Layers as I have a copy (came bundled along with SoundForge when I last upgraded Samplitude) but I have yet to load it.  I've previously used Samplitude's Cleaning and Restoration Suite, so will be interesting how the two compare.  Also have a copy of the lite version of RX, whatever it's called, but also have not loaded it.
musical volition > vibrations > voltages > numeric values > voltages > vibrations> virtual teleportation time-machine experience
Better recording made easy - >>Improved PAS table<< | Made excellent- >>click here to download the Oddball Microphone Technique illustrated PDF booklet<<

Offline Scooter123

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Re: Workflow question (high pass filter / normalizing / balancing levels)
« Reply #13 on: August 31, 2020, 11:05:13 PM »
Spectra layers takes minutes to run a feature, whereas RX7 may take hours. 

My take is that therefore RX7 is doing a more thorough job.

Conversely, Steinberg could be more efficient.  I need to run similar functions and put my ears to it to compare. 
Regards,

Scooter123

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