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PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 11:58 am 
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This is the Discussion Thread for the Wiki entry titled "Toolkit - Basic Mastering Guide". Please post all questions about the Toolkit - Basic Mastering Guide here in this thread.

To view the original Wiki Entry titled "Toolkit - Basic Mastering Guide", click here.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 02, 2010 5:56 pm 
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I'm using a variation of the Spec 4.0_AutoV2 along with the Yamaha Final Master VST (don't fully understand the VST settings yet) in between Meters & Triggers (currently on bypass) and my speakers and audio file recorder.

My Question - If/when I want to use Meters & Triggers should the VST be placed before the M&T to be able to use the midi file recorder after the VST processes the audio or does the correct use of the VST make the midi file recorder redundant?

Thanks


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 03, 2010 7:41 am 
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Murphman wrote:
I'm using a variation of the Spec 4.0_AutoV2 along with the Yamaha Final Master VST (don't fully understand the VST settings yet) in between Meters & Triggers (currently on bypass) and my speakers and audio file recorder.

My Question - If/when I want to use Meters & Triggers should the VST be placed before the M&T to be able to use the midi file recorder after the VST processes the audio or does the correct use of the VST make the midi file recorder redundant?

Thanks

Good question. You want M&T to measure the whole effect of the layout on the source, so you want to put it below any VST you may be using. The only exception would be a limiter VST to handle any "forced" clips that would result from using gains higher than normally determined by the spreadsheet (which I often do personally). Such a limiter would be located below M&T.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 03, 2010 11:08 am 
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I would place something like YFM before M&T. another idea would be to place YFM before M&T, bypass the limiter function and, like Fan51 said, add a limiter after M&T in order to handle transients.

I will say this, though: I used to make extensive use of mastering VSTs like YFM, Izotope Ozone4, and BBE Sonic Maximizer in order to compensate for both a less than ideal source and the extraction process that takes place with converting. While the effect those VSTs has can sometimes lead to a more powerful result on your average HT system, on a very high-end system, you will hear every little bit of compression you add. In the past few months, I've dropped the mastering VSTs almost altogether (except for when, for example, I really do need some extra de-essing) in favor of utilizing the best source possible from the very beginning. Lots of 24-bit sources, vinyl rips, etc. My results are much more natural-sounding.

This is also where I recommend careful live-monitoring. You don't want to set all those humidity sliders at 1.0 and just run with it. You want to set them where you have just enough separation to give good results, but not so much where you're negatively affecting the overall sound quality by tearing your source apart too much.

That being said, what I liked about YFM as a mastering tool (as far as I know, YFM is also no longer commercially available. sorry, folks!) is that your setting are all right there, in front of you, and not hidden in the way they are with Ozone. Even if you really bring in the compression ratios, YFM is going to color your overall sound, though, which is something you may, or may not, want.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 03, 2010 11:37 am 
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was discussed hundreds times before and people still don't understand...

the best idea is measure the output of YFM(and seamless) to see how much it can damage the sound...if you don't measure, you'll never know how much problems you can get!
just use one RMS Buddy right after the YFM output to measure
...and be scared!
if you decrease the input gain before YFM to don't get clips/distortions, YMF will do not as the input will be so low...
limiters after YFM only will 'limit' what was clipped.
is a remedy, not a solution!


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 03, 2010 2:58 pm 
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jorgeluiz wrote:
was discussed hundreds times before and people still don't understand...

the best idea is measure the output of YFM(and seamless) to see how much it can damage the sound...if you don't measure, you'll never know how much problems you can get!
just use one RMS Buddy right after the YFM output to measure
...and be scared!
if you decrease the input gain before YFM to don't get clips/distortions, YMF will do not as the input will be so low...
limiters after YFM only will 'limit' what was clipped.
is a remedy, not a solution!


just because something was discussed "a hundred times before" does not mean that the technology hasn't changed since it was last discussed, or that there are not people reading here who are utilizing stereo-to-surround technology such as SPEC for the first time. for example, you mention utilizing RMS Buddies under YFM. The meters & triggers group already contain monitors which serve the same purpose and are Plogue-native.

the purpose of a limiter would be to "push" the volume a bit more on a conversion while smoothing out positive peak values most likely to be transient and not actual episodes of clipping.

like i said, i do not endorse the use of mastering VSTs unless you feel your source truly needs it to get to a good conversion and, even in a lot of those cases, you may be best served by just seeking out a better source than what you've got for that particular album and live-monitoring with SPEC.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 04, 2010 8:04 am 
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River161 wrote:
just because something was discussed "a hundred times before" does not mean that the technology hasn't changed since it was last discussed, or that there are not people reading here who are utilizing stereo-to-surround technology such as SPEC for the first time.
you're right, we can talk about that one more time, we all will gain.

River161 wrote:
for example, you mention utilizing RMS Buddies under YFM. The meters & triggers group already contain monitors which serve the same purpose and are Plogue-native.
but where the meters are?
right after YFM output or far away mesuring only the outputs of the layout ?
(using this tool as example here, others tools that do seamless job deserve the same procedure).

the audio run across the layout after some tools, go to YFM, YFM output passing for gains and others to be measured in the end of the layout is not valid!

doing this way you don't 'see' what really happens, you're getting the desired levels but the audio inside is damaged.
this is the point, is needed to measure right after YFM.

River161 wrote:
the purpose of a limiter would be to "push" the volume a bit more on a conversion while smoothing out positive peak values most likely to be transient and not actual episodes of clipping.
yes, push, limit, smooth the positives and negatives peaks, creating(from nowhere) squareds peaks(straight lines) where before was sine damaging your audio.
original waveform/enginners work never will be recovered, we'll get ...what? levels?
without measure right after the output of YFM is impossible to know what really happens...
single layout with player, YFM, RMS Buddy and recorder will tell the true.
is needed one gain between the player and YFM to decrease(too much) the input until don't get peaks(that means distortions) and others issues.

River161 wrote:
like i said, i do not endorse the use of mastering VSTs unless you feel your source truly needs it to get to a good conversion and, even in a lot of those cases, you may be best served by just seeking out a better source than what you've got for that particular album and live-monitoring with SPEC.
like you i don't recommend too and it's not a problem of the layout(Toolkit),
it's a problem of this kind of tool.(YFM)
cheers.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 04, 2010 9:30 am 
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Thanks for all the feedback. The bass management system in my vehicle doesn’t have much of an effect on my Plogued tunes and my goal was to be able to enable the LFE signal and increase its signal strength within Spec 4.0 with minimum distortion. I wasn’t able to do that and even with limiters the additional bass was very distracting.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 04, 2010 10:15 am 
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Murphman wrote:
Thanks for all the feedback. The bass management system in my vehicle doesn’t have much of an effect on my Plogued tunes and my goal was to be able to enable the LFE signal and increase its signal strength within Spec 4.0 with minimum distortion. I wasn’t able to do that and even with limiters the additional bass was very distracting.


I am no expert on the ins and outs of HNM Filter (or our upcoming in-house replacement for it for use with LFE), but perhaps there are others who have worked with it and can offer greater help here. Thanks for the clarification on what your needs are right now.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 04, 2010 11:15 am 
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Murphman wrote:
Thanks for all the feedback. The bass management system in my vehicle doesn’t have much of an effect on my Plogued tunes and my goal was to be able to enable the LFE signal and increase its signal strength within Spec 4.0 with minimum distortion. I wasn’t able to do that and even with limiters the additional bass was very distracting.



Just to make sure, are you setting the FFT latency? In SLICE and ArcTan only the LFE is affected by that so if you weren't doing LFE you might have got out of the habbit. If you miss that and enable LFE it's going to sound wrong because it won't be time aligned with the other five channels.


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