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Thread: Why canít I replicate the sound of commercial recordings?

  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by ashcat_lt View Post
    Make sure they have the same polar response (cardioid vs cardioid) and put them in the same place and then match the levels. .
    Been there , done that. Still get bleed. I define bleed as a mic picking up other instruments other than the intended micing target.
    However. I attribute that just to the sensitivity of the mic itself, not the room or the noise level, reflections etc, etc.

    Most condensers are just damn sensitive mics.

    Now I'm not in any way opposed to bleed, and actually like some bleed. (As long as you have a tight band)

    I'm just saying it (bleed) exists.

    But like @miroslav , I wouldn't use them at a live gig just because of the expense and fragility. Why, when bulletproof inexpensive 57s and 58s will do the job.

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    Again, I've seen bar gigs done with 3 mics for a small club. Two 535's for vocals and a Beta 91 in the kick. All condenser mics. No dynamics used. There are a bunch of other condensers that could be used at live gigs as well. We're not exactly talking about vintage C12's.

    Under normal curcumstances I wouldn't put a condenser in a kick drum, but someone ended up doing that with the Shure SM91. It's a half cardioid conference mic, similar to a PZM. Shure liked the idea so much they decided to rename it the Beta 91 and market it as a kick drum mic.

    Moving coil dynamics are a good match for live use and working in close proximity in many cases, not so much ribbon mics. But then there's the M260, designed as a vocal mic suitable for the stage. A lot of manufacturers also make condensers with that use in mind. If you have something that sounds better than a 57 that's suited to what you're trying to do with it, what's wrong with using it, regardless of what type of mic it is? It's not like it hasn't been done.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jimmys69
    I find that condensers have much more sensitivity to input further away than dynamic mics do. How that science works would be nice to find a link to info about why that happens.
    A lot of it has to do with the working distance to the mic (proximity), polar pattern and transient response. In the case of transient response, if you have a very low mass pickup element (the diaphragm of a condenser, or the cartridge or ribbon of a dynamic) it takes less force to make the thing start to move. It also has less inertia to keep moving so it will stop earlier. Fast transient response helps to impart detail. Moving coils tend to be a bit sluggish (with exceptions, within reason), ribbons tend to be very natural and condensers are all over the map. Some of the cheap condensers can actually have exaggerated transient response. Part of the head amp circuit in a condenser is a damper for the transient response, so you really have to consider the overall design. So if you drop a sewing needle on a tile 10 feet from your vocal mic, is the mic actually fast enough to catch that? If you're working that mic within one inch, does it really matter?

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    More to the point perhaps:

    Put a 57 and a condenser with about the same polar pattern as close as possible to the same spot on your snare drum. Adjust gain so that the both peak at the same point when you hit the snare. Now play your ride cymbal. How much difference is there between the two aside from the actual frequency response. I promise it approaches zero.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ashcat_lt View Post
    More to the point perhaps:

    Put a 57 and a condenser with about the same polar pattern as close as possible to the same spot on your snare drum. Adjust gain so that the both peak at the same point when you hit the snare. Now play your ride cymbal. How much difference is there between the two aside from the actual frequency response. I promise it approaches zero.
    I may just try some experimentation this weekend. Have a one off song for a band that already mixed down here and wants to add another song to the record. Full band. Great time for a good comparison.

    I do use a CAD M179 for 16 or 18" floor toms in drum room because it always seems to sound so much better than a 57 or e604's that I really like on smaller toms. But then I also always find a bunch of bleed from the kick on the floor tom track, depending on the drummers setup. I typically replace the kick drum for the most part. Sometimes I feel I need to use SS Trigger to enhance the floor tom because of the need to high pass out the kick bleed, and bring back the low end.

    Recording is like a box of chocolates....
    PC Win7-64-24G i7-4790k/Cubase 9 Pro 64-bit/2-Steinberg UR824's/ADAM A7x/Event TR8/SS Trigger Plat Deluxe/Melodyne 4 Studio/Other things that don't mean anything if a client shows up not knowing what it wants.

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    I love coming back to a thread I haven't looked at in days to see how far it has wandered off topic By the by I just moved my floor tom mic about three inches due to too many stick strikes(it's and mk219,slightly modded) and now my floor tom sounds like it's being pounded by Thor with Mjolnir. I had thought it was as good as I could get where it was, just goes to show. Here is where it was, it's now just at the floor tom rim tucked next to the rack tom.
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    Reference track + EQ analyzer plugin for both tracks to match frequencies.

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    Reading through this thread made me think of a video I saw recently that seems particularly on topic. I don't know if any of y'all have seen this yet, but I was pretty blown away by it.

    It shows one studio's attempt to recreate the tones on the Beatles' "Come Together." And it does by far the best job of it that I've ever heard.

    Here's the video:


    I understand this isn't exactly what the OP is talking about, because he's made it clear that he's not wanting to recreate a song exactly, but what I really like about this video is that they talk about most all of the facets involved, including outboard gear, instruments, mics (and mic technique), rooms, etc. Granted, they do probably spend the majority of time talking about the outboard gear, but I think that's most likely because this studio has authentic recreations of the some of the same preamps and compressors that the Beatles actually used on the track. So I think they wanted to show them off a little bit, which is understandable.

    But it's still a very enjoyable and educational viewing, IMO --- and even more so if you're a Beatles fan (as I am).

    What stuck out to me the most, however, was that, although they used all this period-correct gear (or expensive modern recreations of it) for the instruments and outboard gear, they still recorded it digitally and used Wave plug-ins to emulate the tape machine sound. I mean ... call me crazy, but I would think that most people, when asked what the number one difference between recording nowadays versus recording in the Beatles' day, would say "tape." So it's odd to me that they wouldn't try to secure a quality 4-track or 8-track tape machine, especially being the gearheads that they obviously are.

    Nevertheless, it sounds awesome, IMO, and it was quite fun to watch.
    famous beagle

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    Quote Originally Posted by trusso11783 View Post
    i am back and am leaving a link of a clip of the commercially released song followed by a clip of my song. I do not need to replicate the released song. I am just trying to match the song, sonically. If my mix can sound anything like theirs, then i am on the right track. I am talking about quality and nothing about the actual song itself. I seem to have a problem balancing everything and keeping things from clashing. I suppose i have to practice more with the eq settings to get everything in their own space. My song is only the drums, bass and keys. No vocals or guitars. I am more concerned with getting the drum sounds right.

    Go here if you want to listen and it would be great to get any advice or ideas to move forward.

    ok. Bring down the kick and snare. Use your ears . Forget about eq'ing any thing now.the kick has too much of a click to it.suggest rolling of some of the high end. Your synth /keys are weak . Try panning and maybe bring the levels up a bit. If you've got a few bucks to spend ,the eventide octovox can wonderful swirling sound for strings and synths. I record alot of cellos and strings and octovox is my go to. If you want a nice sheen after you've done your final mix, i.e. , you've eq'd,compressed, delays ,etc, add about 2 db of 11k -14k of high end to your mix. Your version is not that bad. Experiment, use your ears

  11. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by trusso11783 View Post
    I am back and am leaving a link of a clip of the commercially released song followed by a clip of my song. I do not need to replicate the released song. I am just trying to match the song, sonically. If my mix can sound anything like theirs, then I am on the right track. I am talking about quality and nothing about the actual song itself. I seem to have a problem balancing everything and keeping things from clashing. I suppose I have to practice more with the eq settings to get everything in their own space. My song is only the drums, bass and keys. No vocals or guitars. I am more concerned with getting the drum sounds right.

    Go here if you want to listen and it would be great to get any advice or ideas to move forward.

    yeah Im hearing a loss of bass from the commercial. is it too isolated with the tracks? Ive read about the bleed effect, and some older engineers said the multi tracking becomes more sterile and too clean? lol...so we spend all that effort to get clean and then its too sterile?

    it would be interesting to hear only the rythm of the original vs the copy too, no vocals etc.
    i wonder though if it was a fully done copy with all the parts would it be so noticeably different?

    that Beatle video was interesting and watching the completed copy version was pretty dead on. ...but dang they had all the gear too.

    if it's not happening in the room, it ain't gonna happen on tape.-H.Gerst

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