Should I touch it?

Discussion in 'Location Recording' started by David French, Feb 7, 2007.

  1. David French

    David French Well-Known Member

    Please read the following before answering that... :shock:

    I'm referrring to a particular recording, and to the tweakhead mentality in general.

    Excerpt from a cool piece of new chamber music

    So it's obviously a decent enough recording, but I've been pondering things such as adjusting the width (maybe a hair too wide?), adding a bit of verb, adding a slight presence boost (maybe a bit murky?), and adding some foundation (maybe a bit light in the 150 Hz range?). I've also pondered some rather stupid things such as NR and rolling of the ultra lows for rumble control (barely audible in the quietest moments. Anybody think that any of these things are actually valid?

    Tweakism is a disease, and I have tendencies toward it. Luckily, I know how silly it usually is, and I actively shun it. Still, the doubt is always there n some quantity.

    So, does anyone think that there's any good reasons for messing with this recording, or should I leave well enough alone? How 'bout in general? How do you learn to leave it alone?
  2. MadTiger3000

    MadTiger3000 Active Member

    I could almost cosign the need for the presence boost. Almost.

    The way to leave it alone? Sit back, and try to forget about being a professional. Just enjoy the piece. If you can enjoy it, then it is done.
  3. David French

    David French Well-Known Member

    Interesting philosophy...
  4. aracu

    aracu Active Member

    How about, do everything you want with it, keeping versions of
    the original and of each combination of tweaks, then compare
    them a couple weeks later.
  5. David French

    David French Well-Known Member

    Another interesting suggestion. Thanks.
  6. Simmosonic

    Simmosonic Active Member

    I used to suffer from Tweakism terribly. I got over it, but now I have the opposite problem; I usually find myself preferring to leave things as they are, even when they would actually benefit from some tweaking. Perhaps I'm just lazy?

    So, I have to get ultra-objective about it and ask myself things that have simple yes/no answers, most that can be confirmed by looking at a meter or other objective technical display, such as "Is the dynamic range acceptable for the market it is aimed at? Is the bandwidth appropriate? Is the noise level acceptable? Is the balance correct? Is the stereo width appropriate? Is it wet enough, or too wet?" That helps me keep it in perspective. (Quite often, fixing one or two of the measurable objective problems has the wonderful side-effect of taking care of the subjective problems in the recording.)

    Then I make the changes, put it aside and take a listen the next day...

    Five times out of ten I'll undo the changes and go with the original. Or put it aside for another day. Or just give up and give it to someone else to fix...

    [Sorry, this whole response sounds much more serious than was intended.]
  7. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Guest

    I know exactly how you guys feel! Don't labor over this too much David. It sounds very nice already.

    Back in my younger days, I paid great attention to detail. When I was 17, I was already employed as a production and sometimes music engineer with Flite3 recordings in Baltimore. One day, the President/Owner, who used to regularly record the Baltimore Symphony, comes into my control room, while I am tone pulsing, AV slide shows. He tells me needs my help in listening to something in his control room?? (My help???) So he starts playing back something of the Baltimore Symphony he had just recorded. He wanted me to sit in the sweet-spot (wow??). To which he looked it me, with a crazed look in his eye and asked me "is that oboe absolutely center?!?" I told him, "it sounds fine to me?" He seemed to be pleased with that answer and sent me back to pulsing my AV shows.

    So basically, as I have matured, as much is I want to get things right, especially in the studio, I really look forward to the spontaneous happenstance's, which I find more human, more organic, more listenable to me. My boss was crazed from too much minutia. We've all gone through that. It becomes harder on the system, the human system, as you age. Later, it just seems to be counterproductive? I suppose it might be different if you have many $$$, like they used to in the old days?? But these days, everybody wants drive-through.

    Would you like loud frying chips with your big Mac??
    Ms. Remy Ann David
  8. Simmosonic

    Simmosonic Active Member

  9. David French

    David French Well-Known Member

    Great advice, both of you. Thanks. I needed that.

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