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Masterlink "Pops & Snaps"

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by Mad John, Mar 30, 2002.

  1. Mad John

    Mad John Active Member

    Please excuse me on this , but I just got it this week and from doing a few mixes I noticed it has a terible Digital pop at almost every begining and end.

    What am I doing wrong?

    Mad John
    Zythum Studios

    "The present day Composer refuses to die!" - Edgar Varese - 1921
     
  2. planet red

    planet red Active Member

    What is your setup, are you just using the outputs of your board into the A/D of the masterlink or are you using anything else hooked up digitally thru it?
     
  3. Mad John

    Mad John Active Member

    Hi,

    I am useing a Mackie 1604 , main outs are going to the analog in of the Finalizer (it is set to standard mode, just passing thru) , then it goes from the 96ks digital out to the Masterlink.

    Have you ever had that common digital snap happen to you ever with the Masterlink?

    Mad John
    Zythum Studios

    "The present day Composer refuses to die!" - Edgar Varese - 1921
     
  4. dynamo12

    dynamo12 Guest

    ""Please excuse me on this , but I just got it this week and from doing a few mixes I noticed it has a terible Digital pop at almost every begining and end"""

    Son of a Bit...
    Jo
     
  5. planet red

    planet red Active Member

    You're going to have to set either the finalizer or the masterlink as the master wordclock and the other as the slave. I'm not really sure how you do this with these two units but if you look in the manuals it should tell you.
     
  6. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    What is the Finalizer doing in the chain BTW?
     
  7. Mad John

    Mad John Active Member

    It is neutral at this time. I have yet to Finalize with the TC Electronics , but I have always had it in my chain since I got it.

    It has always been in neutral and the dither was set for standard 16 bit.

    Mad John
    Zythum Studios

    "The present day Composer refuses to die!" - Edgar Varese - 1921
     
  8. brad

    brad Guest

    ....
     
  9. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    John Thomas Milhorat wrote:
    "It is neutral at this time. I have yet to Finalize with the TC Electronics , but I have always had it in my chain since I got it.
    It has always been in neutral and the dither was set for standard 16 bit."

    Skip the dither & just skip the Finalizer altogether for now - un hook it!

    Print to the masterlink at 24 bit then later either

    1) make a unprocesssed 16 bit copy by hitting the - 'make a CD' button on the ML

    or -

    2) run the AES out of the ML into the Finalizer set for mastering compression limiting EQ etc AND it's 16 bit dither... then send the output of THAT to a DAT player or a DAW - there is your 16 bit master...

    Do tyou really want to be making 16 bit mixes at the time of mixdown?

    Most folks would want to capture the mix at the best possible sampling rate (even 96k) then process in a mastering situation (the next day perhaps after a good 'ear break' .

    Tell us more of your demands for 16 bit!

    keep it 24 bit as long as possible!

    :)

    BTW - Make sure you have the pre delay in the compressor section set to "0" delay!!!! :mad: not good! - A simple but very bad mistake to make with the Finalizer!
     
  10. Mad John

    Mad John Active Member

    Thank you Julian!

    I found out just how important the sample rate is! Dont laugh, but before my expierience with the masterlink, I had no idea that the sample rate of the Masterlink is much like the phisical aspect of an analog tape speed (IMPs) , where the speed of the material is changed from one speed (slower) to another (faster)

    I belive that in order to have the "best" possible Master I can make , that I need to use the Masterlinks full capasity and go with the 24 bit/96K!

    I wish there was more literature on this , for I never quite understood the Finalizer from a creative stand point. The subject of mastering is a case to case situation and every one is different! There is no right way , only wrong ways to apply your techniques.

    I am a Composer/Musician and I do every job in the studios on my own. I have had to learn the digital world and Mastering equipment at point blank range in a short period of time.

    I have note books on all recording procedures conducted in the Studio and I try and study what I can as I am working in these different areas.

    Please be patient with me. I learn quite fast , but in understanding the basic set up principles of Dithering and so forth I need to be absolutly clear on the correct sequence of the mentioned chain.

    I must say I did a mix last night in the 24 bit/96K mode and I found the quality to be excellent! I could definatly tell the difference between this and the 16 bit , let alone my DA-40, which is what I had been useing until the Alesis.

    Mad John
    Zythum Studios

    "The present day Composer refuses to die!" - Edgar Varese - 1921
     
  11. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    If you lived in London I would offer to come round and give you Finalizer lessons!

    BTW the hard drive capacity of the ML can be increased from 4 (?) up to 30 gig! But this has to be done by a clever computer type and voids the 1 year service warranty.

    :)
     
  12. planet red

    planet red Active Member

    If you are going to do the sample rates inside the masterlink you should go with 88.2k. Its not about what sounds best coming off your masterlink (unless you're going back out to analog to make your master) but whats going to sound the best on 16 bit 44.1k for cd.
     
  13. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    Red is right.. 82k is supposed to sound best sample rate converted down to 44.1 rather than 96k (its the maths!)

    :eek:
     
  14. Mad John

    Mad John Active Member

    Thank you gentalmen!

    I certainly apreciate the tips. So I should keep the sample rate at 88.2k at all times?

    That of course includes the Finalizer.

    Once I am properly confident that I am hooked up correctly , I will have a better reference from which to actuwaly do the Mastering with the best fidelity.

    Julian, I am a little confused with the HD time. It seems on mine in the right upper corner there is an indicator and at 16 bits it says 30 hrs HD. In 96K it is 9.2 hrs HD.

    What is that if not the hard Drive time?

    Mad John
    Zythum Studios

    "The present day Composer refuses to die!" - Edgar Varese - 1921
     
  15. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    Welcome to the world of high-definition digital audio, John - and all the increased storage requirements that come free of charge! At least the arithmetic is pretty basic: 24 bit files are 150% larger than the same time's worth of 16 bit, 88.2 are twice the size of 44.1, etc. So a 24/88.2 session will require 3x the disk space (1.5 x 2) than the same session recorded at 16/44.1 would need. Ergo, your 30 GB drive just became a virtual 10GB! Notice I avoided discussions of 96k, 'cause I hate thinking about 96 รท 44.1, and apparently so does your computer. Hence the recommendations to record at 88.2 when the intention is to down sample to 44.1 eventually.
     
  16. brad

    brad Guest

    ....
     
  17. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    John,

    Just another couple of thoughts....

    I started thinking about how, from reading this and others of your posts, it seems your goal is to be a completely self-sufficient production facility - from original composition all the way to finished mastered product. Certainly an admirable goal. But I might draw the line at the mastering part.

    DIY mastering, at least to me, is something of an oxymoron - kind of like do it yourself brain surgery. It's not so much about gear - after all, anyone can buy stuff. Even if you don't have Sonic Solutions/Massenberg/Weiss etc. there are less expensive alternatives that can theoretically do the job.

    But to me there are more important issues. First of all, how can one reasonably expect to master a project in the same room with the same equipment as where you mixed it? Let's assume that there are at least some acoustic flaws in your room, and that your speakers may not necessarily be "mastering quality". How will you be able to expose and correct those flaws without taking the project out of your room at some point? A Finalizer and a Masterlink do not a mastering facility make, especially if they are sitting in a room with parallel walls and an 8 foot ceiling.

    And the same can be said for your ears - you may have spent the last 20 years or so developing your compositional craft, but the mastering engineer has been spending that same time developing his/her ears. We talk all the time about hearing mixes on different speakers in different rooms, but is it any less important to hear them with different ears? Especially super-trained ones?

    Basically, there is only one legitimate reason not to outsource the mastering stage of your projects: economics. If you're broke or if you are working on projects that have no hope of ever generating any income, it is understandable why you may not want to fork out any extra money.

    But even the economic argument is debateable. While it may not be feasible for you to take your stuff to Bob Ludwig/Gateway for instance, I can vouch that in the Boston area (for instance) there are small independent facilities that do wonderful work who are only charging $75-$100 per hour. That may only translate to $400-$600 for a CD length project.

    Only you can judge if that is worth it. My advice would be to test a short project, even a mix of just one song, at a couple of different places, and see what a difference it ultimately makes.

    Although I may be sounding like a mastering engineer trying to generate work, in fact, the opposite is true. I am a recorder/mixer only - I wouldn't ever pretend that the mixes I hand to my clients are "mastered". It has nothing to do with the equipment that I do or do not own. It has to do with freely admitted flaws in my room acoustics, my skill set, and my ears. :cool:
     
  18. Mad John

    Mad John Active Member

    Yeah, I am all analog gear except for the Finalizer & Masterlink.

    Am I alright then with 24/88.2?

    Mad John
    Zythum Studios

    "The present day Composer refuses to die!" - Edgar Varese - 1921
     
  19. Mad John

    Mad John Active Member

    Littledog, yes, I agree with you completly. Unfortunatly you have guessed my musical predicament.

    a) I am not wealthy.

    b) The market I seek is strictly Underground.

    c) The level of the musical Productions have more to do with Atmosphere (which I have coined "Psykaramics") and are not "Modern" sounding, so the fidelity is some what "Low Fi."

    d) My goel here is to personaly do the very best sonic work that 1 man can and to better improve the old works (and new) with a result I can be proud of!

    Remeber I am not useing 2 inch tape or Modern Digital stuff, so my sounds (particularly the Low end) has to be faithful to the original textures from the Analpg Masters.

    What I have always tried to do with recording is 1, not make the production sound "Tracked" and 2, not let the equipment dictate too much how things are captured. The big picture is much more important to me than all of the single details. The time I have wasted on mic sounds (which I still find very important) has to be overdriven at times by the climate of the musical expression.

    I would rather have a "13 Floor Elevators" wild mayhaem Garage track (Low fi and a quik sloppy session set up) than loose that bands fitality because we were sloshing thru the scroll buttons or something.

    So while I agree with you completly on leaveing the Mastering to the trained Masterers, I have too many projects happening here comming at lightning speeds, so I am afraid I have to stick with the "do it yourself" method.

    Mad John
    Zythum Studios

    "The present day Composer refuses to die!" - Edgar Varese - 1921
     
  20. Masternfool

    Masternfool Active Member

    There are several smaller studios that "master" their own material, But I don't consider them a master, I call that a PMCD, Pre-mastered CD, wheras all the spacing,IDs'sequencing and anything non-tone related can be done to help out on the final master.($). I have a friend who has been recording and mastering his own material for probably 20 years now, While it can be done it is very straining on the nerves.Best..
     
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