> 1) If you think that digital mixing is without coloration, you are
> fooling yourself. There is ultimate room for math errors to the right
> of the decimal point. Especially the more DSP and track count that is
> being summed.
Check your lingo. There's a big distinction to be made concerning digital
mixing and digital summing. Mixing includes effects processing and gain
adjustments with dithering etc, but summing is only the addition of binary
data, something that is hardly new to computing. There are no new rounding
errors introduced at the summing stage, though any previous ones are passed
on, just like an analog mix bus does, except with added program coloration.
That's what I mean by precise and uncolored summing. Nothing more.
> 2) I'd like you to re-read ulysses post on mastering about 1000
> times until you understand what it means. I've copied it below.
> > I think you and I have vastly differing ideas of what mastering is for.
> > It's not the mastering engineer's job to provide tonal richness in my
> > recordings. It's his job to make sure that MY tonal choices and my
> > recording's tonal richness arrives intact at the ears of all different
> > kinds of listeners, regardless of the system they use to play the
> > record. It's his job to make sure that there is continuity of tonality
> > through the progression of an album. And it's sometimes his job to
> > make sure my exuberance in applying my choice of coloration doesn't
> > interact negatively with the limitations of typical playback equipment.
> > But it is definitely not his job to try and slap some tone onto my
> > finished recording.
Show me where it's imperative that the mixer print program coloration in
that statement. If you put the coloring aspects required on program content
to make the mixing decisions in the monitoring chain only, a qualified
mastering engineer can recreate and improve upon those processes through
his/her superior experience and equipment. If they couldn't they wouldn't
be worth hiring.
> A topic is interesting as long as it is a discussion. Some of us
> have tried to point out why we like to do things the way we do them,
> but you don't seem to be accepting of that. If you prefer digital
> summing, great. But don't claim that it is something that it's not .
Welcome to usenet. Around here we make whatever claims we see fit. If I'm
wrong, I'm wrong, but it takes discussion to determine that. If all you
think you're doing is pointing out to others that I am wrong, I don't think
you're doing a very good job of it, mostly since you're missing my point.
If you like the way you do things, more power to you. I'm only suggesting
an alternative that has merit in theory. I often mix with coloration in the
monitoring chain that's not printed to program, and I have no trouble
getting the results I want from mastering. YMMV
> "Sugarite" <***@home.com> wrote in message
> > > Okay, this is getting silly.
> > I disagree, I think it's something interesting that most people haven't
> > considered before.
> > > We are not creating technical specs here,
> > > we are creating music. Coloration is not always a bad thing, if it is
> > > used properly it helps ceate the magic.
> > No argument there, we're discussing the proper use of coloration as it
> > relates to summing.
> > > I happen to prefer analog
> > > summing. To me, it helps me get the depth and width that I am looking
> > > for.
> > My argument there is that the coloration you're adding to get a sound
> > like is doing part of the mastering process, when a colorless sum would
> > a mastering engineer more to work with and render a better final result,
> > even though the unmastered mix might not sound as pleasing.
> > > There are many great engineers who do wonderful "in the box"
> > > mixes. To label all artifacts THAT DO OCCUR from BOTH these approaches
> > > as merely "coloration" and therefore dismiss it as "bad" is just
> > > silly.
> > I guess you missed the study I posted that proved that many digital
> > engines are rendering bit-accurate results. I would argue the
> > generalization is that people think digital summing has errors, when in
> > it's only missing pleasant coloration of an analog console.
> > > Tube mics, tube gear, Neve consoles, WHATEVER we run through
> > > puts a stamp of some sort on the signal.
> > Apparently the stamp of a good digital sum is the lack of a stamp.
> > > There are times that the
> > > rpoduction is best served by a straight wire with gain approach by the
> > > engineer or producer, and so the choice would then be made as to the
> > > best way...analog or digital, to achieve that. other times the
> > > "coloration" of a big beefy imperfect analog buss is what serves the
> > > production best. The idea that these things should only be left to the
> > > mastering engineer is just wrong. Yes, there are people you either
> > > don't have the equipment resources or the experience to do this
> > > artfully on their own, and would be better served by letting the
> > > mastering engineer send it through the coloration stuff, but not
> > > everyone falls into that category. There are many really good
> > > engineers that have a vision of what they are going for and how to get
> > > there. I know guys who do really good sounding, really succesful
> > > records that strap stereo EQs and compressors across the main buss of
> > > million dollar consoles....because it gets them the vibe they are
> > > after. Walking up to one of them and saying that "those things should
> > > be left to the mastering engineer" would either get you a fist in the
> > > mouth, or at the very least a good laugh session. There are times when
> > > the coloration IS the thing, and it is up to the production people to
> > > decide that.
> > Just because they need to hear the coloration to get the mix right
> > mean they have to print it! I suggest they record the console outputs,
> > before the EQ and comp, which would still be in the monitoring chain.
> > way they can hear the coloration they need to monitor their "vibe" and
> > minimize the program coloration. I would bet good money that a good
> > mastering engineer would render better results, assuming the mixer could
> > effectively describe to them the exact "vibe" they were after. Good
> > mastering engineers know how to get that sort of thing, and it's the
> > producer's job to enable them to do it.
> > I actually mix in a similar way. I often monitor through a tube stereo
> > and I sometimes work on a mix with a multiband compressor plug in the
> > channel depending on the content, but I never print it. Monitoring
> > coloration is for the mixer's ears, mastering is for everyone's ears.
> > > ALSO, I have seen many a mix screwed up by "professional"
> > > mastering engineers with gobs of equipment by their side. Not guys in
> > > bedrooms with a PC, but real, well known facilities. Just 'cause their
> > > uniform says "Mastering Engineer" doesn't mean they have a clue.
> > I bet you don't master your own mixes to avoid the quacks though. Part
> > producer's job is to track down effective mastering. Bad mastering
> > colored and uncolored sums equally and has no bearing on this issue.
> > > Besides, in an ideal world, mastering should just be a final check for
> > > translation of mixes and consistency, not the thing you rely on to
> > > make your mix work.
> > That may be what you need, but my contention is that if you found a
> > mastering house you could rely upon that much, you would be better
> > having no program coloration. Anyone you can't rely upon that much
> > shouldn't be used in the first place, especially since there's plenty
> > there that are more than qualified.
> > > As engineers, we want to give the mastering people
> > > room to have a positive affect on the product ( i.e. don't
> > > pre-compress it down to a 2db dynamic range) but we also should be
> > > delivering a product that doesn't require 3 hours worth of work per
> > > song by the mastering engineer.
> > There's plenty of daylight between those two examples. And I don't see
> > making a mastering engineer earn their pay is so terrible. I'm sure
> > happy as clams when they get heavily colored mixes and say, "oh good,
> > someone's done my work for me, and I still get paid!"
> > > Anyway.....again the idea that analog
> > > always equals bad coloration that should be left to mastering is
> > > absurd.
> > Dude, the whole industry is pretty absurd. Virtually every new music
> > reproduction technology or technique that stands to improve upon
> > standards is initially though of as absurd - transistors, digital tape,
> > I make enough to live on just from the recordings where I use a Nomad
> > Jukebox 3 as the recorder. Two years ago everyone thought that was
> > and it was unprofessional not to spend $3k on a Nagra III.
> > I only suggest that the theory is sound (pardon the pun) and it's
> > to examine in more detail with more experimentation. If it wasn't for
> > huge undertaking done to compare digital summing from completely
> > systems, we would never have known they could be so accurate. I only
> > more mastering engineers become aware of this and equip themselves
> > accordingly.
> > > "Sugarite" <***@home.com> wrote in message
> > news:<rDAhd.email@example.com>...
> > > > > Let me try again, maybe it's my English.
> > > >
> > > > It's your english alright, but it's your reading, not your writing.
> > > >
> > > > > My point is that analog and digital summing
> > > > > sound different. The difference I hear is not subtle and that's
> > > > > determines my pereferences when it comes to mixing.
> > > >
> > > > Any difference introduced by the mix bus *alone* is coloration on
> > program.
> > > > Program means after the summing is actually done. Analog mix buses
> > a
> > > > gain stage that acts as a buffer to prevent the interactive issues
> > > > mentioned before. The coloration you're getting is from the gain
> > > > itself, just like a colored mic preamp. It's a post-summing
> > > > process, exactly what you claim to dislike below. By using a
> > mix
> > > > bus you are doing a stage of mastering as you mix.
> > > >
> > > > > Your idea seems to be that coloration in general should be left to
> > > > > competent mastering engineer.
> > > >
> > > > We're not talking about using a Distressor on vocals here.
> > *on
> > > > program material* is part of a mastering engineer's job, you pay
> > do
> > > > it. Applying irreversible coloration that could react adversely
> > > > mastering processes makes no sense. You're going to great lengths
> > > > half-perform and half-sabotage the mastering process. Either master
> > > > yourself or let them do their job.
> > > >
> > > > > How hard the mix bus is driven affects its tone, but it
> > > > > also subtly affects relative balances between the elements of the
> > > > > That's the interaction I was talking about. Back and forth between
> > channel
> > > > > faders and knobs and the master fader. Fine-tuning goes on until
> > > > > operator is satisfied.
> > > >
> > > > That's exactly what I like to do live when I can, but again only
> > I
> > > > can't have a live FOH mix mastered. It's not interactive
> > it's
> > > > standard gain stage coloration and saturation. Coloration has an
> > > > intermodular quality to it, similar to what you describe, even if
> > > > tube EQ on a stereo mix. It can still do exactly what you're
> > about,
> > > > which is why it can disrupt what you've done.
> > > >
> > > > > Added colorations constitute a significant part of his signature
> > sound. By
> > > > > the time the mix gets to a mastering stage it's a done deal and a
> > mastering
> > > > > engineer ideally shouldn't do anything that would disturb that
> > delicate
> > > > > tone/level balance, among other things.
> > > >
> > > > They can do it better than you can, but only if you don't attempt to
> > it
> > > > first.
> > > >
> > > > > Now on technical level, analog mix bus coloration is not as
> > sophisticated
> > as
> > > > > that of mastering-grade equipment, true, due to often inferior
> > circuitry
> > of
> > > > > console's mix bus. However, any processing, including coloration
> > applied
> > at
> > > > > mastering stage affects only the whole finished mix. There's still
> > potential
> > > > > to disturb the balances within the mix (drums or vocals can get
> > in,
> > > > > for example), but there's no way to compensate for it adjusting
> > > > > individual elements other than further processing (eq, for
> > the
> > > > > whole mix, which in turn affects other relative balances etc. It's
> > tricky
> > > > > game. I'd rather have control over my tone and balances as much as
> > can.
> > > >
> > > > You can choose any mastering engineer you can afford. There's
> > that
> > > > are skillful enough to offer the results you specify. There's your
> > control.
> > > >
> > > > > We're not talking about what's better or worse here. Good results
> > could be
> > > > > achieved any way. This is about who's having control of certain
> > crucial
> > > > > stages of production.
> > > >
> > > > You apply program coloration, then complain about how its mastered.
> > can
> > > > you control what you don't understand?
> > > >
> > > > Digital equivalents to many analog processes have exposed how "good
> > sound"
> > > > can often have more to do with coloration than with precision. For
> > example,
> > > > a tube compressor's dynamic manipulation is very easily emulated
> > > > software, however the hardware compressor will sound better because
> > the
> > > > coloration introduced by the componentry, which is completely
> > to
> > > > the dynamics. The software is more precise, but the hardware sounds
> > better.
> > > > In most cases a better sounding compressor is preferable regardless
> > its
> > > > precision.
> > > >
> > > > But a summing bus is no place for coloration if you're getting the
> > mix
> > > > mastered.