Analog vs. Digital

Discussion in 'Mastering' started by daveseviltwin, Aug 27, 2005.

  1. Just out of curiousity and because this always seem to "strike a nerve" with a lot of people. Hypothetically, if you had your choice and analog was as "convenient" as digital format, which would you choose to master with? I'm curious to see what the pro's will say. Most of you guys that are working in the "higher end" studios are still using analog alot anyway, right?
  2. iznogood

    iznogood Guest

    if i had a choice i would ALWAYS choose analog.... nothing digital compares to a manley vari-mu or a fairman eq.....

    but i do like something like a weiss digital eq for notch eq before the d/a... and i use L2 (of course)

    but if i have to i use plugs.... i can get to work.... and sound reasonably good.... but you never get that "WOW" feeling.... but you don't get that with cheap analog gear either.....

    so imo (pro) mastering is for folks who can afford the truly great analog gear..... but i'm just a snob :lol: :lol:
  3. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Well-Known Member

    I used to be an "analog snob" until I tried to get the same sound using digital gear when I started out on my own. I turned into a "digital snob" in a heartbeat.

    And then, well, I failed miserably using digital gear, dumped that whole idea rather quickly and started investing in analog gear again.

    Digital is certainly convenient - There's no comparison. And for a lot of things, the "cooler" digital stuff is QUITE decent. UAD's Precision EQ for example - That thing is WAY cool, IMO. I think it was $200... If it was $1000, it wouldn't have made a difference. It rawks, and that's all there is to it. And for a lot of corrective EQ applications (de-essing to a point, notching out anomalies, etc.) I'll reach for digital processing fairly often.

    Dynamics is another story... I'm analog basically all the way there. Even (perhaps especially) limiting. I have a few limiter plugs that I think are wonderful (UAD again), but when I put them up against the analog stuff...
  4. TrilliumSound

    TrilliumSound Active Member

    Just like what I said in a another thread, analog is the way to go for me but digital could be very nice and convenient on top of it.
  5. I try to stay at least 98% pure (analog). However, there are some things that are much much more convenient in digital (like reverbs) even though they are totally possible in analog.
  6. good

    I like what you guys are saying.
  7. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    You always have a choice. I choose results. Analog or digital or both. They are just merely tools to help achieve desired results.

    Very seldom is it a question of one or the other. The reality is that you do what you need to do with whatever tools you have available to you to get as close to the desired results you are after, be it analog or digital.
  8. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Excellent question/topic!

    You all know that I'm not a seasoned ME, but that I do try my hand at it and am hoping to get better. So with that stated, I'll state my preferences.

    As for analog VS digital - I use whatever tool I have that does the exact job I need it to.

    I have a small assortment of both digital (both external and plug-ins) and analog EQs, Compressors, limiters, and other FX. Ultimately, I love tweaking the knobs and getting the sound that I'm after. It's so organic and the tactile and instant feedback is gratifying. My personal preference would be to stay in the analog world as much as possible.

    However, there are some amazing digital tools out there which bring whole new options to the table. A couple digital eqs that I've been using lately blow me away. The Algorithmix Linear Phase Orange, Weiss EQ1 (non-Dyn version - I'm not made of money...), WaveArts all have sounds to them that are hard to get out of an analog box.

    Also, as for compression, I find that, despite the fact that they're supposedly doing the same thing, digital and analog sound far different. Perhaps it's that an analog compressor isn't 100% accurate and it's this sound that endears me/us to them, but it's a great sound. Personally, I have yet to find an analog compressor that I couldn't use for something (mastering or not). However, I have found several plug-in compressors that are useless (IMO, of course) and just sound bad.

    So, I guess to me, it's whatever works at the moment. I don't think that one is inheritly better than another - just different. And different is good.

    J. 8)
  9. Dr_Willie_OBGYN

    Dr_Willie_OBGYN Active Member

    If you're on a budget the software based ones sure save you a lot of money. For $800 MaxxBass and Stereo Imager can really make a home studio recording come alive.
  10. iznogood

    iznogood Guest

    funny that you mention the two plug's i would never use.....
  11. Dr_Willie_OBGYN

    Dr_Willie_OBGYN Active Member

    Why's that? Is there better software for the same tasks? What hardware gear would you use to do the same beefing up of the low end and adding stereo imaging?
  12. TrilliumSound

    TrilliumSound Active Member

    A good Equalizer.
  13. iznogood

    iznogood Guest

    :lol: :lol:

    plus some comp.... and some m/s....
  14. onglee

    onglee Guest

    i'm too lazy to type out my opinion just because i've gone through this discussion too many times. so i'll just say i agree with this one.

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