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isolating mono from stereo master file?

Discussion in 'Recording' started by ClarkJaman, Feb 12, 2015.

  1. ClarkJaman

    ClarkJaman Active Member

    I'm interested to hear how you guys pull out the mono stuff from a stereo track. For example if a certain track has only an acoustic guitar hard left, another acoustic guitar hard right and a vocal track dead center, and all you had was the stereo master file to work with, how would you go about pulling out the vocals in the center if you wanted to make it (as close as possible) to an instrumental track?

    I'm trying to learn the bass riff from a particular song and I can barely hear it in the recording. But I know the bass is dead center and most of the other instruments are panned to either side. I know there's a way to do it in a DAW but I'm a little rusty right now... :(

    Pax Caritas et lol,
  2. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    I use the Dangerous Master but a good Mid/Side decoder should do it depending on how tight the mid and side information is. Whats mono stays mono and whats on the side, stays on the sides but there could be bleed and/ or this could also do some weird removing of things. I've never actually done what you are thinking but I use M/S all the time.
  3. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Ozone and Sequoia have excellent M/S software solutions
    pcrecord likes this.
  4. ClarkJaman

    ClarkJaman Active Member

    Thanks Chris. :) How would I do this manually though?
  5. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Vocal Eliminator
  6. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    I'm just guessing here, but it should work with some trial and error.
    Download some sort of MS software.

    Create a Bus and put the M/S on it.
    Assign all the tracks to that.
    Then, mute the center and bounce the sum down.
  7. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

    Doing the typical phase inversion trick (a la Vocal Eliminator), is going to cancel out the bass part you're trying extra hard to hear - right along with everything else panned dead center.

    You might do just as well going nuts with the EQ to try to exaggerate the bass.
  8. paulears

    paulears Well-Known Member

    In theory, you do the karaoke trick to remove the centre, leaving the panned sources, then you take the original and convert it to a two channel mono track, invert it and then blend these two together. The only thing not present in both tracks, the bass, should be revealed. I tried it quickly and while it sort of works, it sounds pretty nasty, with very odd phasing artefacts. I tried to eq the bass to bring it out, and it is a bit better than the original, but frankly, not by much. If your bass track is weak in the first place, I don't think this will work.

    Good news is that if this is the only recording of the track, then nobody can tell you you are wrong if you make your own bits up!
    ClarkJaman likes this.
  9. ClarkJaman

    ClarkJaman Active Member

    Haha true that! The song is Queen of California by John Mayer. You wouldn't believe how many great bass covers there are of this song out there that are technically "wrong."

    I tried the kareoke trick inverted with the original track like you suggested paulears and it sort of worked but was definitely underwhelming. I guess I'll just have to keep playing my own version of the song! :)

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