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Old April 9th, 2006, 11:37 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Dale Paterson
Hey Steve, thanks for the input.

I do understand what you are saying - and my inputs were not clipped or anything like that - but the recorded inputs on some tracks were too high - and the recorded inputs on some tracks were too low - even although the gain / input level on the mixer was set uniformely for each mic / input - as one would expect.

In post I went through each track / vocal passage within a track / and normalized the passage - this took some time - and then you never know if you missed something out or not.

Basically - I am asking for software - that does the same as hardware that can be purchased i.e. I know from my band / guitar days that you can purchase a compressor / limiter or expander - but I want software that can do this (working with the Sony products).

Something else I have not touched on - what about a 'gate'. In my last scenario I had 6 mics all on at the same time. Needless to say - whatever was not coming through the 'main' mic - i.e. let's say that the speaker (person) was at the podium - the other 5 mics were picking up the audio from the person as well as the public address system albeit at lower levels. I believe that a 'gate' would counteract / squelch any input levels below a certain amount and thus eliminate any crosstalk etc. etc. that may occur. I believe that such a 'hardware gate' can be purchased for a huge amount of $$$. I was hoping that there would be some software out there that could accomplish this in real-time.


You definitely can have that in software but the time to apply it is after the initial recording, applying it when mastering the mix as the tracks are rendered to the final output file.
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Old April 9th, 2006, 12:49 PM   #17
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As long as your signal isn't clipping and its just a matter of leveling out loud and soft tracks...

Cubase SX 2 and above (I'd get 3 if you can afford it, but 2 might be available used for much less) are capable of recording with effects enabled in realtime. Most pro audio apps aren't set up the record tracks wet since most pro audio guys wouldn't do that with software tools. The meat-n-potatos plugins that come with the audio software usually aren't that great...

You'll have much more control if you do it afterwards, anyway (and not have to spend so much on the software...) and that also gives you the option of recording at 24 bit since you'll have to render later anyway. That way the quieter tracks will generally be higher quality and have less noise when you turn them up.

I wouldn't record with a gate unless my life depended on it for some reason. Too easy to have it do odd things to your audio that you're going to have to clean up later.

If your goal is to record those 16 mics and have the minimal amount of audio post time while STILL getting professional results... you're in for some experimentation. The cheapest way may indeed be to staff the position of audio engineer and let he/she give you the best audio in realtime. Beats spending 4-10 times the length of the project in post production unless you're getting paid hourly. :)

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Old April 9th, 2006, 04:02 PM   #18
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As said recording this in 24 bit is the way to fly assuming your preamps aren't so noisy as to render this pointless. Then in post one can tweak away to your hearts content.
If you've got Vegas then this is all pretty simple stuff, and you've got something to edit the video!
Set all your record levels on the desk so nothing clips even if someone shouts, at 24 bit there's plenty of room for heaps of gain in post.
The stock noise gate that comes with Vegas is pretty horrid, I use the Graphic Dynamics from Sound Forge in Vegas, works much better. For a compressor / limiter, Wavehammer, again from Sound Forge, works nicely in Vegas. With FXs in Vegas be aware that they're applied as FX inserts i.e. before the level controls, to get them to work best for you in this situation send the tracks to busses and apply the FXs to the busses.

This is probably not such a huge task in post, once another speaker starts talking you can set their volume envelope and leave it until another speaker comes along.

To perhaps make the task easier use automation and a HUI, the Mackie is the best but Behringer make a very cheap unit that'll do the job in Vegas.
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