Was Brandon correct when he rebelled against spending money on recording gear?

Was Brandon correct when he rebelled against spending money on recording gear?
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#82

Well I’m still stuck on the first part :slight_smile:

I only recently started to work with them (trying to learn them), And a lot of the time I’m just not sure what to listen for.


#83

first, don’t think you need to compress everything all the time, because you definitely do not.

next figure out what you want to do with the signal you have. does it need more attack, less attack, does it need to be thicker, is one area just sticking out to much. There are ways to use it like an eq (especially with multiband units) or ways to enhance or tame the transient response.

the basic functions are attack, release, threshold, and ratio. some compressors these things are fixed and its adjustment is based on input level, so it really matters to know how things work a little.

attack is the speed at which you want the signal to be engaged; the faster the attack will engage the beginning of a transient and the slower the attack allows more of the signal to go through before its engaged. with different types of compressors this varies and why people say that an 1176 is faster than a LA2A for instance.

the release is how long it holds on to the engaged signal before letting go. this is easy to see with meters - when a signal has a short release its bouncing from signal to signal because its letting go and then engaging and letting go… when there is a long release you can see the meter stay in reduction and slowly and if there is a lot of signals engaged and the release is too long it will stay engaged.

The threshold is the point where the compressor will engage the signal. so if the compressor has a threshold you are able to adjust that according to the signal, whether you want to just hit the very peak of a signal or you want to engage the signal at a low point.

The ratio is the hardest concept of compression to understand and when you get to higher levels of ratio over 10:1 it is generally considered limiting. the ratio and threshold combination is basically what controls the amount of gain reduction. the ratio how you set the signal to compress once it hits the threshold. a 4:1 ratio means that once the signal level goes 4dB over the threshold, the output level is 1 dB over the threshold; essentially 3dB of gain reduction.

Its harder to explain than understand… I’m sure other will chime in here or move this to a separate topic and focus all your questions about compression there. there are other things to know, because not all compressors work the same, there is also key filters or sidechaining etc…


#84

If i could get on my RR inbox i could as my diwnload link is there, but i lost the pdf files somehow from my pc and only have all the audio files now.


#85

Thanks for the trouble mate :slight_smile: I sort of understood those things, but its hard to hear the effect of what you’re doing at times if you’re not sure what to listen for :smiley: Would be nice if some one could sit next to me, and do something, and then say what I should listen for, and then explain what he did, and then let me do it, and so on :stuck_out_tongue:


#86

THats to bad :slight_smile: would be nice though !


#87

I would also love to have this experience with an experienced mixer. No substitute for this kind of direct interaction.

Had the same experience when I used to brew beer. A couple times I got to brew with some really good, near pro-level homebrewers, and I never learned so much as those times. Same deal here for sure.


#88

Top end equipment: As a general rule, it tends to be better quality than lower end stuff. But in our home recording world, the question is, how much better?

Is a $1k microphone ten times better than a $100 microphone? No it isn’t.

I don’t see anything wrong with buying high end gear if that’s what people want to do, but at our level it’s more about satisfying gear lust than serving any useful purpose. What’s the point in shelling out $1k for a mic when your mix is swimming in mud? Why spend a huge wad on high end pre amps when the person who’s singing can’t even pitch properly?

If you want your recordings to improve, get the basics right. If you don’t have the ability to produce a very good quality recording using what you already have, then no amount of high end gear is going to make any difference. I think that is where Brandon was coming from.


#89

Nailed it!

100% agree on this


#90

I say, if you’ve got the cash, and you’re going to go out and get a $5000 Martin acoustic - who am I (or anybody else for that matter) to tell you not to spend your own money on what you see fit? But my own opinion is if I can’t rock it on a $100 guitar, I won’t fall into the trap that the extra $4900 is going to suddenly turn me into a great guitar player.

Myself, I’ve set strict limits on what money I put into music (seeing as it’s strictly a hobby for me). I have to record YouTube videos for my work - therefore a Rode NT1-a was bought. What possible benefit would I gain from a Neumann u87 in my terribly treated room and my god awful voice? But the flip side: If I had the $2500 to blow on this mic, who has the right to tell me I can’t / shouldn’t buy it?


#91

I was probably one of the last joiners and I’m one of the sole survivors on Audiopolis! I had trouble from the outset logging in to Recording Gear and his farewell message kinda explains everything. I hold nothing gainst him :grinning:


#92

[quote=“AJ113, post:88, topic:322”]
Why spend a huge wad on high end pre amps when the person who’s singing can’t even pitch properly?
[/quote]I agree.

Buying Melodyne and learning to use it will make an objective improvement in quality for many vocal tracks. A 57 into a reasonable input chain + Melodyne will sound way better for most vocalist than any hardware chain in the world and no pitch correction.


#93

Hmmm, Beeeeer, hrhrhrrhrrrrr (homer drool sound :stuck_out_tongue: )
I would love to learn to brew beer one day!

And yeah, those are the best ways to learn indeed!


#94

[quote=“AJ113, post:88, topic:322, full:true”]
… in our home recording world, the question is, how much better? …at our level it’s more about satisfying gear lust than serving any useful purpose. [/quote]

The basic premise makes sense. The issue is that not everyone wants to stay at ‘this level’. How exactly is one supposed to compete with the workflow of companies that have high dollar consoles, enterprise level server networks, and ATMOS mixing rooms? Either pony up the cash to acquire the right tools to compete with or get the shit kicked out of you. An ITB single operator rig is completely and helplessly useless against that level of technology. It just won’t do the job.

[quote]
What’s the point in shelling out $1k for a mic when your mix is swimming in mud? Why spend a huge wad on high end pre amps when the person who’s singing can’t even pitch properly? [/quote]

Because you’re dealing with a different group of engineers and different group of clients. And because a $250k mixer does things that ITB and low end gear is downright incapable of.

I’m was never sure that’s where he was coming from. On recording review, there was a lot of dogging on engineers who DO have the basics right, and who DO have the ‘ability’ to produce a good recording. To them the high end gear DOES make a difference. You will only ~ever~ hear otherwise from people that have never worked a dubstage or broadcast room.


#95

[quote=“Jonathan, post:94, topic:322”]
How exactly is one supposed to compete with the workflow of companies that have high dollar consoles, enterprise level server networks, and ATMOS mixing rooms?
[/quote]One isn’t. That would be like Dave thinking his home brew setup could compete with Budweiser.

Dude, it’s a home recording forum. Get with the program.


#96

Not to put too fine a point on it, but my homebrew beat the shit out of Budweiser. BUT! It was not in the same league as the craft brews I was emulating, although it was pretty damned good all the same. A pretty good analogy for the point you’re trying to make though Adrian, that’s for sure. :slight_smile:


#97

There’s a difference between competing on sound quality and competing on efficiency. I don’t think anyone would argue that a full fledged studio has more abilities to record more things in different ways. Having a good room without noise gives you way more options than you would have in a small room with kids upstairs.

A big production studio has to handle a lot more stuff than 99% of any of us have to handle. If someone came to me and said “I need some ADR work done on a full length movie” I’d tell them they were much better off going somewhere else. And sound quality wouldn’t be my main concern (although if I were to be doing that, I’d want a quieter room). But workflow would be a much bigger concern.

But if we’re talking about being able to make quality music recordings, I just don’t see how that’s an issue today. 90% of the instruments on music today is VI’s anyway.

It might be more work with cheaper gear. You might have fewer options. But if someone puts up a song, and it sounds bad, and their excuse is that they only had cheap gear, then it’s user error.


#98

I love the old Brandon controversy debates…lol …he knew how to stir up the bee hive.

Is using logic brain instead of emotional marketing hype brain being rebellious?

daang JK…your posting Skywalker studios…haaahaa thats a crazy comparison range.
Boz probably more like 99.9999999999999% of us. Skywalker is like another planet.

still Brandon suffered Engineer brain which means he used logic too much instead of emotional/hype and the comparisons he did himself on gear, with the gangs voting on shootouts lead him to his conclusions. He never did get to the hardware compressors…he did the Preamps, he did the EQ, he had a Distressor etc…but Im guessing he was also realizing the software versions were making his hardware stuff obsolete too.

my fav was the expensive piece he bought, it arrived, he plugged it in and said “it was like the first time your wiener doesnt work”…aha

the disappointment series, I can relate, we all want that “magic holy grail tool” that makes the track sound like Grammy # 1 album track…for years many believed it was the gear of the pro’s that made that happen, maybe it is to some extent? but doing a lot of homework Brandon found cheaper good pieces…but eventually I think he ran out of money for playing that game of gear comparing.

most of us know a U67 into a Neve 1073 into a Urei blackface 1176 can make a good vocal track, but most dont own a strip like that. Maybe a MXL mod into a Gap73 into a STAM76 gets there for $3k instead of $30k…or settle for a plug-in for $30 and van down by the river…


#99

[quote=“bozmillar, post:97, topic:322”]
There’s a difference between competing on sound quality and competing on efficiency. [/quote]

The nature of this discussion hinges on whether people interpret ‘Brandons rebellion against high end gear’ to apply to major studios, or whether it was intended to address the home studio user only. We’ll probably never know. For the major studios the sound is always there. The budget is there, therefore top industry talent is there, therefore everyone hits home runs with their audio. That’s a given. They compete on efficiency and project capacity. We only see competition on engineering chops at lower levels.


#100

[quote=“CCbro, post:98, topic:322, full:true”]

daang JK…your posting Skywalker studios…haaahaa thats a crazy comparison range.Boz probably more like 99.9999999999999% of us. Skywalker is like another planet. [/quote]

My point was that you don’t build studios like ~that~ by thinking like ~this~:

I got real sick and tired of turning projects down because I didn’t have a system that could handle it. I had two choices. I could either buy a system that met the needs of the market and ditch music recording for good, or go back to recording bands for the rest of my life. No thanks to the second.


#101

I must not have gotten the memo :persevere: DOH!!!