Is it worth the effort?

Discussion in 'Digital & Modeling Gear' started by Prosvetlen, May 9, 2015.

  1. Prosvetlen

    Prosvetlen Member

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    Here's what I want to do: I have a splitter that can send a guitar signal to two instances, one would be the Effectrode Blackbird>Ultra+"real" amps etc., and the other would go to an Apogee Jam--a clean dry guitar sound which I can later reamp through Guitar Rig, Pod Farm, Amplitube etc. I will have to open two different DAWs, such as Reaper and Live, in order to assign different inputs for each DAW. It's a strictly recording application. Tell me if it's worth the effort, please! Thanks.
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2015
  2. colonoscopotamus

    colonoscopotamus Member

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    In my experience, no.
    While there are a lot of positives to the digital recording revolution, there are also quite a few negatives. This question highlights one of them. Back when you had only so many tracks of tape, and successive generations of dubbing/reamping/transferring those tracks meant risking an unacceptable increase in the amount of background noise introduced into the signal, the only way to record was to get it right going in. Of course, you could sweeten and add effects at mix time, but if the raw recordings weren't 90% there, you recorded it again until it was fixed. Artistic decisions were made during the actual creation of the art - you recorded what sounded good in the room.
    With digital recording, you aren't constrained in the same way, and so a lot of (especially, but not exclusively) amatuer/inexperienced recordists will leave themselves as many options for mix time as possible. All of those options almost inevitably leave the recordist with analysis paralysis when it comes to mix time. So few decisions have been made about the sound, that when you sit down to mix, there's nothing there to serve as a guide for what the track should sound like. The infinity of options means you'll have to spend a whole bunch of time getting the mix to the point where you can start doing the sweetening and minor adjustments that take a raw track to a finished mix, instead of being able to sit down in front of a mix, pull up the faders, and hear what the track ought to sound like right away.
    The technology available to us is amazing, but don't get so obsessed with utilizing all the options you have available that you sacrifice the core sound and feel of a good song. I know my recordings have improved immensely since I started forcing myself to find a sound I like, record myself playing exactly that sound, and then leaving that core sound alone through the mixing process.
    Good luck with your search.
     
  3. Mrmeatball

    Mrmeatball Member

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    Yeah I kind of agree with all that, I however always record a dry track of my guitar parts so that if push comes to shove I could re amp it or whatever, but in all honesty I think I've only ever utilised one of the dry tracks once, pretty much everytime the original sound I had in mind and recorded first sounds the best, if you keep yourself open to the giant chocolate box of effects and amps I find it becomes too time consuming to make it worthwhile, it is fun though, but if you are recording a band and have a schedule of some sorts to stick to then it can become an unwelcome distraction, especially for drummers as I have found from experience, they don't seem to like listening to my guitar on loop for 3 hours while I twiddle with different amps
     
  4. Prosvetlen

    Prosvetlen Member

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    colonoscopotamus, thank you for writing this! I think I should print it and frame it. Many, many good points there, so I will need to comment on them separately.

    Firstly, I have to say that in the signal path I described my main/preferred tone will be coming out and recorded simultaneously with the parallel tone that eventually would come out through the digital/Apogee Jam setup. So I will have my full blooded tone, which will be monitored in real time and used as a future reference to the post recording stage.

    So, in that aspect I'm safe: when the time for mixing comes, I wont be sitting in front of the board clueless about what my initial idea of the tone was.

    The digital signal would be sort of a reassurance that if, God forbid, I change my tone preference in the post recording stage, I still would be able to call in reamping for additional touches on the canvas. And not only that: the digital reamping will bring in something to the "main" tone by simply applying a little chorus here, some reverb there, or a slap delay for a few seconds, which, of course, can be done on the "main" tone as well, but I often prefer my "main" tone to stay dry and raw, and everything else to be hidden with just little clues here and there.

    Now,
    , as you have wisely put it. You are right there: it's a blessing and a curse. I love more, I admit that, no, I live for more, and it's a problem sometimes. It what sense--I often enjoy listening to the different variants of the mix, than actually mixing. Since I'm not pressed with time (most of the time), I can be careless about what is achieved on a daily basis, so I just soak on the sounds. I probably sound spoiled and rotten, but that's the truth. Anyway, great, great post and insight. I will advise our colleagues here to read it as well.
     
  5. Prosvetlen

    Prosvetlen Member

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    Mrmeatball, why does that sound so familiar!? I perfectly know what you mean, we might have been in the same room even:crazy
    My methodology is the same, though: recording dry and wetting later on. After feeding on that gigantic box of chocolate, I usually retreat to my best friends: limiters, EQs, and compressors. After all, is there anything better than a great channel strip!
     
  6. Mrmeatball

    Mrmeatball Member

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    Haha, like I said it IS fun, for me at least, my bandmates less so, when our vocalist starts to see if his eyelids will turn inside out I know what he's really trying to say is "can we start polishing the vocals yet?"
     

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