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Thread: Anyone know about "Bedroom Producing" Techniques?

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    Question

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    Hi everyone, I'm new here and not much of a musician nor a mixmeister but I am wondering about the techniques that pretty wellknown "Bedroom Producers" use like, you know, Aphex Twin, Mu-Ziq, and Squarepusher... those kind of "underground techno" people who compose intelligent dance music on what often seems to be a shoestring budget but sounds so good (to me at least).

    I tried scouring the Net for info but I haven't been able to find much info because they tend to keep their techniques kinda secretive - like most of them seem to mix their own music alright but do they usually get someone else to master it?? And what tools are often preferred in a bedroom environment like this? Like which mixing consoles and mastering aid software and hardware. This is where I'm lost.

    I just hope to get a friendly discussion started, if anyone has any more info I'd really appreciate hearing about it because I'm just curious what these people do and how they do it and all, you know? Sorry if I don't seem like I know that much, it's 'cause I don't and I'll be honest about it. Thanks =)!

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    Cool

    From my angle as living-room producer (right next to my bedroom if that counts) the key aspects to focus on are getting a clean recording as hot (plenty of signal relative to the noise floor) as possible.
    Maybe these manufacturers can provide proof that their toys will magically transform your recordings. I might accept this in the form of before and after .mp3 files. Haven't seen
    any of these though.... Maybe some of the folks here who have these units (exciters, maximizers, decimators etc.) could prepare an A/B .mp3 pair and post it at JustOn.

    [This message has been edited by drstawl (edited 11-16-1999).]

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    Wink

    I have an Aphex aural exciter, and I will say that it definitely helps for lower quality recording mediums like cassette. For example, if you record on a four-track cassette, adding the Aphex during mixdown (to one or two tracks) can really improve the sound quality. I would also recommend noise reduction be used in conjuntion with this (The Aphex can add noise-free high end back to what the NR took away). But if you're recording digital --- don't bother with sort of technology.

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    Fancy bedroom!

    ******************************************************
    http://www.aphextwin.org/reading/afxfaq.txt

    A:8 "What kind of equipment does Aphex Twin use?"

    Originally, Richard was known for creating his own equipment. He would use shells of other devices and fill them with his own circuits, but these days he doesn't use the electronic stuff he made before. He uses about two things that he built when he was younger, and that's all. He's strictly into the computer domain. He has three computers: two laptops and a PowerPC. In fact, almost the entire _Richard D. James Album_ was done on his PowerPC.

    He has always been into computers, but, according to him, "they weren't good enough for a while."

    "Computers were too rubbish for me to get into them, but now they've reached really good heights again, and I'm really back into them." He has even started to write his own software. He has never been one to use standard tools, so virtually every aspect of his music-making has been customised in some way, shape, or form. That is part of what gives his music it's unique sound.

    One of his favourite mainstream tools is Steinberg's ReCycle. "Yeah, it's quite a wicked program. The most useful thing about it is it creates a bank on your sampler, and gives it loads of sample names. And that saves you an hour, at least. You can cut something up into, like, 90 samples, and transfer it over SCSI in a minute. That would take two hours normally." And not only for breakbeats, Richard uses ReCycle for melodic material as well. "I might play a violin or a trumpet scale into Pro Tools--every note I can think of--and then bang it into ReCycle, chop it up into little bits, bang it into the sampler, and you've got a complete bank of sounds in your sampler in about five minutes.

    "That's what I'm into now. I don't muck around with electronics anymore but I probably will get back into it soon because it's still got advantages. It's nice to have something in your hands rather than on a screen. I'm really into computers because obviously you can do something with it--I'll be dealing with electronics in a nostalgic way not in an inventive way. Using older electronics for an older type of sound. My prime motivation is to do something new all the time and keep exploring. Computers are so powerful now, there's so much to be done with them really."

    As far as live shows are concerned, it took about a year, but he has finally filled his laptop with everything he needs to tour. Well, _almost_ everything. He also uses a little mixer, and an effects unit. But soon he will be eradicating the mixer and effects unit, so basically it will just be one computer. It does everything he did before with live samples and sequences. He has put every element down on a digital track in Digidesign's Pro Tools, so he can mix between tracks.
    *************************************************

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    Talking

    "bedroom producing techniques", aural exciters, aphex "twins", bang it into the sampler, nice to have something in your hands, "My prime motivation is to do something new all the time and keep exploring", these units (exciters, maximizers,...

    Im telling ya, it's no wonder we got a bunch of guys (and a few gals too) here that just love home recording.

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    Talking

    Suggest you consult with Kelly H. on this one since he knows about that kind of stuff.

    Green Hornet

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    Sure. Ask Yoko Ono. She set up a bed in the Abbey Road Studio while The Beatles were recording and called all the shots from it.

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