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Apr 13, 2022 - 7:57:35 PM
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13662 posts since 9/23/2009

Well I made this weird discovery a couple of weeks back, or maybe it's just junk...I mean, I don't know. Here's what happened...normally for a fiddle to stand out from the backup tracks, or voice to stand out or whatever needs to stand out, I will hit a thing that says "Duplicate track with events," or something like that. So this sort of beefs up that particular track without having to just increase volume...normally I then set one of those two fiddle tracks up higher and leave the other at a lower volume, until to my ear it sounds like it can stand up against the backup tracks without having to blast out too loud. I don't remember when or how I discovered this worked for me...it's been a while...I didn't do this on my older youtubes, the early presonus ones, because I just didn't stumble on it yet and had to just try to play closer to mic or louder for certain parts. I can also use this technique of duplicating the track so I can have a louder one and softer one, then, like say it's a fiddle track I'm doing that too...if a vocal part comes in there, I can delete out the louder duplicate fiddle track and then bring it back in when the singing is done...so that way it's easier to record the fiddle when it goes from being a prominent thing to backing up a vocal and then back to prominence again...I can control that by cutting half of its track out.

So anyway, I've been doing that for a pretty long time now...but the other day, couple of weeks back, I felt like Ashokan Farewell...played it...put backup tracks on and duplicated the fiddle so it would stand out like I felt like it should...but somehow I accidentally moved the duplicated track. I've had thathappen before and then just delete that moved one, because for me at least, who never learns, just discovers stuff by accident...lol...for me it's too hard to try to move them back again. But this time, I did try to move it back, because I just figured I oughta know how to do that, if I seem to somehow do something to make the tracks move in the first place...well, I tried for a few minutes and just could not for the life of me get that track lined up perfect with the other track.

So then I thought, "man this'll really sound terrible..." and I played it just out of curiosity as to what sort of mess I'd made trying to line up those two fiddle tracks. Well, to my surprise...I liked it. It had a mild half-echoey sound, not reverby and not too echoey, but enough to cause my fiddle, to my ear anyway, to sound like an expensive instrument instead of a cheapie. And seemed to me it made my fiddling sound better too. Seemed like the notes just melted into one another. I liked it so I kept it in and figured I'd made a new discovery in multi track recording. i had tried reverb once before and it really sounded phoney and terrible when I tried it. So anyhow...here's a link if you wanna hear whatthe fiddle sounded like that time...none of the other tracks were affected by this...just the main fiddle track. I did put a second fiddle on near the end, but the only thing with the poorly aligned duplicate tracks was the main fiddle part.

See what you think...very slightly misaligned duplicate fiddle tracks

So...I'm wondering if this could be a helpful thing to get good at...lol.  I tried it today with a harmonica recording of Clementine...and tried to do that but couldn't even figure out how to make the duplicate track of harmonica move at all, let alone control where it would move to...so...hmmm...maybe not doable.

Apr 13, 2022 - 9:05:57 PM
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3109 posts since 9/13/2009

First should point out that just duplicating the track actually doesn't do anything that just turning up the volume/gain on a single track would do.

Second, there different ways to align the tracks; basic is to have snap to grid on. To move slightly, offset, there is a nudge command. (Can also just type in the time code when to start the track).

--------

The discovery that you made with the offset is essentially like using a delay plug-in... and might want to use a plugin instead... like quick delay or reverb... both can make the sound less dry, a little more spacious as in a room (or hall/cathedral), and perhaps a little fuller. You could play with making another duplicate and offset... then hard panning as two background tracks left/right; with original in center... will ad a bit of width or stereo spread. That said actual plug-ins are perhaps a better way, not complex, and give a little more control than your method. (can be easy to over do it though)

The other similar methods that many recordings use to give space and fuller sound;

1. Multiple mics... which can be set up at different distances/angles; sometimes use a room mic; and or as a stereo spread.

2. Actual double tracking (sometimes more). This is where you try to play (or sing) the exact same thing, often using a different mic/setup (or instrument) for each take. The subtle differences give more fullness and widen sound. Some can be hard panned left and right... gives very lively stereo spread. Should note that rhythm guitar is easiest to do this. But a lot of studios use this technique for lead vocals. However, the trick is being able to actually play/sing each track very close to same... so as to sound like one instrument. If too much off it can lose presence/directness, sounds  a bt too much like a chorus, big circle jam thing. Of course can just blend in a little in back to give depth.

---

I would first play around a little with reverb and delay plug ins... which IIRC comes with Studio One (if not can download free plug-ins).

For doubling tracking experiment... try for just guitar... record twice... pan hard left/right.

Edited by - alaskafiddler on 04/13/2022 21:18:17

Apr 14, 2022 - 4:35:38 AM

13662 posts since 9/23/2009

That's a lot to digest there...lol. Thanks for all the info.

Apr 14, 2022 - 6:37:50 AM
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518 posts since 7/30/2021

The fiddle does sound somehow smoother and more expensive, I agree Peggy!

( Beautiful version of Ashokan by the way. :-)

 

"well, I tried for a few minutes and just could not for the life of me get that track lined up perfect with the other track."<--  story of my life.

Edited by - NCnotes on 04/14/2022 06:42:38

Apr 14, 2022 - 7:55:17 AM
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512 posts since 7/18/2014

Hi Peggy, to move a section of track around you should first clear out the area around the part that you want to save and move. To do that, highlight the parts of the track that you don’t want to use and just cut them out. This creates some slack so things can move around. Now look for a Time Shift Tool button and click on that. Then, click on the part you want to move and just drag it around where you want it. You can enlarge the view of the track to help see that it’s in the right place. (you have to turn that tool off when you are done)

Apr 14, 2022 - 2:49:18 PM
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3109 posts since 9/13/2009

quote:
Originally posted by groundhogpeggy

That's a lot to digest there...lol. Thanks for all the info.


Sorry, didn't mean to overwhelm you. But point out that some of these techniques, are really not really that complex to play with.

The FX/plug-ins are probably easier to play with... again the advantage is that easier to control (than dragging)... bit more options, easily undo with no affect on original track. Just toys/tools to play with.

Some of what you discovered with time delay... essentially has to with recording (esp with a single mic) doesn't always quite capture what we normally experience listening live... in that we hear a wider sound and the room, all the multiple reflections off walls, ceilings, floor... and because of the speed of sound with a bit delays before reaching ears (as well affects tone). Without it can sound a little thin and dry and 2 dimensional. These techniques, FX are somewhat trying to put back in the sound of delay/reverberation... giving a little more 3 dimensional life to sound.

Perhaps start with a simple Reverb FX plug-in (type of delay). Note the default setting will likely be way too much... start with small room setting, then play with knobs. and back it off. What many aim for with more traditional music, is just a touch... that you don't actually "notice" as reverb standing out... but notice a difference with bypass button can switch on/off to do A/B. (that said, some folks like a lot of reverb, esp for slow airy stuff).

Edited by - alaskafiddler on 04/14/2022 14:50:49

Apr 14, 2022 - 6:23:09 PM
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wilford

USA

309 posts since 6/26/2007

I create a mono track (or a stereo track) and do my recording. Then I select that track and add a layer and then add another layer and then I unpack each layer to track(s). I then pan one layer to left and another to right and leave the original track centered. I then open the browser, select Effects, and scroll to the Groove Delay and set all Taps at #2 with the FB's set at zero, all 4 levels set at 2% and Tap 1 Pan at 70% left and Tap 2 Pan at 70% right.Then, if I'm only recording the fiddle, on my main fader out (post fader) I drop in a mixverb from the Effects, set all my levels and create an export mixdown. It really pretties up a fiddle and is barely noticeable.


Apr 14, 2022 - 7:21:08 PM

3109 posts since 9/13/2009

I not sure what DAW program you are using, but didn't quite follow what you are doing; or calling layers (duplicate tracks?). Never used Groove Delay, perhaps it's like a tempo and note value based delay?

I have done similar, but for most DAW's there is another better method; using a bus (or aux send) for the effects. Busses can make better/tidier workflow, rather than dealing with lot's of tracks, esp as just essentially duplicate tracks. (uses less CPU as well).

Edited by - alaskafiddler on 04/14/2022 19:26:02

Apr 15, 2022 - 5:10:56 AM

wilford

USA

309 posts since 6/26/2007

quote:
Originally posted by alaskafiddler

I not sure what DAW program you are using, but didn't quite follow what you are doing; or calling layers (duplicate tracks?). Never used Groove Delay, perhaps it's like a tempo and note value based delay?

I have done similar, but for most DAW's there is another better method; using a bus (or aux send) for the effects. Busses can make better/tidier workflow, rather than dealing with lot's of tracks, esp as just essentially duplicate tracks. (uses less CPU as well).

You're correct about Groove Delay in so far as I know. I use "quarter note" as a value. My DAW is Studio One 5.2 Pro. The Layers, as far as I know, are duplicates that fatten the recording by adding another copy of the track already recorded, although they are not titled "Duplicates" on the menu, they are called "Layers". "Unpacking Layers" I guess is where the magic happens lol. 

When I add a layer, the first added layer comes up titled as 1-1, the next as 1-2, and so forth. It's at this point where I can assign left and right fields to the signals. I'm not the brightest bulb on the tree when it comes to explaining digital stuff. sorry. :)


Apr 15, 2022 - 5:42:45 AM
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DougD

USA

10774 posts since 12/2/2007

Fred - I know very little about multitrack recording with a computer, but just making a duplicate "layer" will not "fatten" the recording - it just increases the level 3db, which you might as well do with the level control. However when you unpack the layers and pan and delay them you are doing essentially what alaskafddler suggested earlier (although I don't see why you don't just copy the track if you want a clone). I wasn't aware of layers in Studio One (not sure if my free version has that feature), but it seems designed to create "comp" tracks from mulile takes: soundonsound.com/techniques/st...ng-layers

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Apr 15, 2022 - 7:43:01 AM

wilford

USA

309 posts since 6/26/2007

Thank you, Doug. My intent to "fatten" the track was just to pan left and right from a track recorded in mono. When I forget, sometimes, and record a track in mono using one mic plugged into my Presonus 26c, I have it set to record on the left channel when plugged into channel 1 and the right channel when plugged into channel 2.
Rather than record the track over in stereo, I go through the above mentioned procedure.

Thanks for your input, Doug. I appreciate all the help I can get. When I use lots of instruments I do use busses and auxes, which very much simplify mixdown.

Apr 15, 2022 - 7:45:25 AM

3109 posts since 9/13/2009

Thanks Doug, I see layers are just doing comp takes. Looks to work similar to other DAWs.

Yep just duplicating alone doesn't really do anything than equivalent turning up the level or gain. Panning one left and one right alone will still be a mono sound (as it's the same on both sides) and won't fatten sound. It's only by adding the different delays to L/R will create some semblance of stereo (Haas effect).

FWIW - there is another similar microshifting trick might try to make track larger and wider image... take the 2 duplicates and put them thru a pitch shift plug-in... on the left pitch DOWN 5-10 cents; on the right pitch UP the equivalent.

Edited by - alaskafiddler on 04/15/2022 07:47:55

Apr 15, 2022 - 8:18:48 AM

wilford

USA

309 posts since 6/26/2007

Hi Alaskafiddler: I've done the split signal approach. It does work. As are all things digital with me, it was quite a learning curve at first, but I now use this technique once in a while (not that often, though), for specific conditions.

Apr 15, 2022 - 7:40:53 PM

13662 posts since 9/23/2009

Well I can see I'm in way over my head...I appreciate all the comments...only wish they were done in English...lol...but I think I'm officially giving up on learning to do this stuff...I'm just gonna leave it all just like it got recorded and that's just the way it's gonna have to be. Technology drives me out of my mind, and I don't need that sort of frustration...lol. It was a good accident when my tracks got misaligned, but seems to hard to do on purpose and the learning curves sounds like something I ain't in to right now. I do appreciate the comments and I'm impressed with so much recording knowledge we've got here.

And, Fred, beautiful Ashokan example you made...very nice!

Oh, and one more thing, guys. I have to disagree about fattening up the sound by duplicating tracks...for me...it's not the same as just increasing the volume...it does make the sound fuller without being louder. I mean, this is how it works on my presonus and I do duplicate tracks quite a bit to keep the sharpness, loud cutting sound out, and still let the audibility of the sound come through. If I just turn up the volume on a track, it can get harsh or too loud. I just want it fuller. That does work for me...even though I'm too stupid to know what else we are talking about here...lol...I do know that duplicating some (just certain ones) tracks works for me.

Apr 15, 2022 - 11:20:23 PM
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3109 posts since 9/13/2009

Maybe the old "Louder sounds fuller/better", issue folks run into with mixing. It does stand out more, because it's louder.

The sharpness or loud cutting out is probably distorting at the track level. (digital distortion sounds esp harsh)

This is an issue with any mixer/amp; concept called gain staging and headroom... balancing the gain/levels at various stages; channel, master, and speaker monitoring (perhaps via overall computer volume). Too much at beginning, then too low at end... leaving little room. The solution is not complex, simply start with the channel levels down, to around -8; and then turn the master up (so maybe -3); turn speaker volume up if necessary. This should give room to turn up channels individually without running out of headroom/distorting. Overall ends up a better control, less clunky, less space.

Apr 16, 2022 - 4:30:55 AM

13662 posts since 9/23/2009

I've got a little red light that comes on if it starts clipping, so you can adjust volume or mic distance or whatever. But for me, duplicating the track does make it sound better without sounding too loud. Myabe it's just my ears...lol...that's what works for me though.

Apr 16, 2022 - 7:56:38 AM
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wilford

USA

309 posts since 6/26/2007

Thank You Peggy.
I'm in a conversation in which I would do better to listen rather than speak. (kinda reminds me of my first fat lip when I was talking and shoulda been listening, lol). There are many very knowledgeable folks on here that know their DAW's.

But I want to say one more thing to you Peggy, and I won't blame you one bit if you don't try it. But I've found that if I record something too low in volume and I go to "Browse", open "Effects" and scroll down to "Limiter" and drag the limiter into the "insert" part of the fader in Edit mode. Then I simply adjust the "Gain" on the limiter slightly and everything works out fine. That way I can keep my fader levels all the same.

Thanks again for your wonderful compliment. :)

Edited by - wilford on 04/16/2022 08:01:26

Apr 16, 2022 - 8:52:57 AM
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13662 posts since 9/23/2009

Thanks, Fred.

Apr 16, 2022 - 8:58:33 AM
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wilford

USA

309 posts since 6/26/2007

https://youtu.be/8kmt0Ms6ws8

Here's a video that is from a guy who knows recording with Studio One inside and out. He basically says I don't know what I'm talking about....and I believe him now that I've watched this video. So I retract pretty much every thing I've said and refer you to Joe. I've watched Joe's videos for a year now but never happened to see this one. Very good.

Please discount pretty much everything I've "advised" to date. Thanks. lol

Apr 16, 2022 - 3:09:58 PM
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518 posts since 7/30/2021

Well, if you have ever played by yourself vs played in an orchestra, the orchestral sound is smoother, fuller. I think that some little bit of that is what Peggy is hearing? The sound being evened out, smoothed out, by the track doubling and slight offset. ( Just like multiple people playing together but not quite matching,...like what happens in orchestra! )

I also have no idea what I'm doing. The other day I did figure out how to use the setting on BandLab to fix latency (it pings you and then tells you your latency in milliseconds), that's probably the only discovery lately!

Apr 16, 2022 - 11:39:23 PM
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3109 posts since 9/13/2009

It's more of a phenomena like singing/playing in different types of rooms... like shower, or cave, or church... as mentioned above, it's just one sound but secondary slight delayed sounds reflecting off of surfaces; which can make it sound bigger, fuller, 3D...  compared to a very dry anechoic sounding space (like outdoor); which is what often happens in recording process.

Orchestra there is delay from different players distances (about 1 ms per foot); But an orchestra sound more about that you are hearing the sum of slight quality differences from different instruments and playing...  timbre, harmonics, EQ, slight pitch, modulation, transients and random micro timing of the playing. The double tracking technique would be similar; no matter how tight played... are not perfect duplicate copies. Chorusing FX is similar artificial modulation to emulate some; while does make a fuller sound, not really like natural.

Smoother? My guess is how these will result in multiple transients, attacks; so sum perhaps smooths off what would perceived definition from one clear attack. As well, seems adding more instruments change the overall mix and balance of frequency spectrum and perception... so could tame some harshness associated with individual instrument. 

FWIW, might notice how vibrato is similar modulation (pitch) help create wider/bigger/fuller sound.

Apr 21, 2022 - 3:04:51 PM
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3109 posts since 9/13/2009

Messin around with some of the mentioned techniques. 

A little bit double tracking, little of delay FX, reverb to give bit of roomy sound to original dry sound. Might have overdone some of it.  I always struggle at mastering... get to sound fine one device and it sounds totally different on another. 


Edited by - alaskafiddler on 04/21/2022 15:15:26

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