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if it's in the red "clip" but you hear no clips or

I decided to push a mix a little past the red zone, burned a CD and it seems fine, I even pushed the same mix way past the red zone haveing continuous clipping visualy but the audio sounds great. What is the deal with the red, is it set lower than needed on some software? If it's sounds good is it ok?
I am using Sonar 2.
Thanks and Blessings


CoyoteTrax Wed, 12/20/2006 - 08:18
I'm really surprised that when you converted to 16bit and then to .wav to burn a cd that you don't hear the officious "crack!" associated with digital clipping. I use sonar 2 also and have always had horrible results when I didn't stay out of the clip-zone. Personally, I recommend staying completely away from clipping and ride the fader during mixdown to be safe. You have to leave room for mastering anyway. That's just me though.

RemyRAD Wed, 12/20/2006 - 09:46
Sometimes percussive transients can lightly clip without any deleterious effects. In fact at times, lightly clipped percussion transients largely go unnoticed and sometimes can enhance the sound of the drums by providing a little extra harmonic distortion to add that little extra something.

Although you don't necessarily want to purposefully over optimize a CD as it can get rather harshsounding.

Thwacking Crazy Broad
Ms. Remy Ann David

Pro Audio Guest Wed, 12/20/2006 - 10:45
What are the signs of pushing it to far? And if I don;t hear pops, or distortion is it ok. I imported several waves of different music I like and noticed almost all of them peaked through the red the whole song without ever clipping.
Now with anolog I know that you can push into the red, and use your ears to tell if it's oversaturated, but with digital I've heard that the only signs are clipping. Can distortion happen that you only notice on certain players? or is it safe if it's safe? Thanks for answering my rambling question.

TVPostSound Wed, 12/20/2006 - 19:11
I decided to push a mix a little past the red zone, burned a CD and it seems fine, I even pushed the same mix way past the red zone haveing continuous clipping visualy

At what point will this madness end???

WHY would you attempt to push a mix to the limit, let alone above??
Leve a few dBs of headroom, it wont hurt!!!!!

Pro Audio Guest Wed, 12/20/2006 - 20:54
So i imported a bunch of waves of music I like into sonar, and noticed all of them were riding right in the red zone. And yes I have read the many debates about loudness vs dynamic range etc. And my angle is - if someone makes a mixed cd of music they like, and one of my mixes is on there, it needs to be comprible to the others in volume or... song gets 86d off the list. I feel that there was a day when people really listened to there albums, anticipating every nuance. Now music is becoming wallpaper. and it is vital that a mix be somewhere in the range of commercially available cd's. I would never need to be the loudest mix, but the quietest will get lost just based on volume alone. Well Blessings and Thank you for the responses

TVPostSound Wed, 12/20/2006 - 21:54
I would never need to be the loudest mix, but the quietest will get lost just based on volume alone. Well Blessings and Thank you for the responses

Hmm, how is it that classics are just as loud as modern rock on the radio??

Well, when you grow up in this business, you might learn how to properly mix without hitting the red.
"Apparent loudness" is an art that can be acquired.

Good luck to you.

RemyRAD Thu, 12/21/2006 - 00:33
loveeternal, we eternally love comments such as yours!

TVPostSound and I have been around the block a few more times than yourself. What you don't understand is, that the kind of loudness levels you are seeing, are the result of Mastering Engineers optimizing an already highly compressed when mixed and optimized cut to begin with.

Your reasoning regarding loudness levels, is not sound. Consider the pun and the literal meaning. There is no reason to brutally push any mix, other than death metal, like that. That's amateur hour. Some of the loudest sounding mixes never appear like that because they are so superbly engineered with great technique and experience. Just because some of your " favorite" junk is over optimized simply means that your over optimized cut is not going to sound any louder than any other cut when broadcast on radio or TV and likely will not have a noticeable difference when compared to another over optimized CD. In fact, many of these over optimized CDs sound harsh and cause greater listener fatigue. A good way to make sure your listener has other favorites other than yours.

It's sort of a guy thing also. You guys think that if you have a bigger penis, it will be better for me than somebody else would be, with a smaller penis but a substantially better technique. Another wrong assumption. Another analogy might be, "it's fun to get drunk". "It's fun to drive when you're drunk". It's fun to drive fast when you're drunk". Certainly not smart. But fun. Dangerous. Risky. But if that's what shakes your VU meter, go ahead and kill yourself but only if it's louder than the other guy who just killed himself?

Responses? We're not wasting our time here to give you responses. We are wasting our time here, as highly skilled professionals, giving of themselves and their time, to help answer questions and educate otherwise unenlightened people like yourself. Now while I mentioned before, not all clipping is immediately or audibly apparent, closer inspection while zoomed in, with your software of choice, will probably reveal " flattopped" clipped waveforms. Percussion transients may not be immediately noticeable as sounding clipped but when you hear any other instrument, vocal and such, clipped, it is the least professional thing you can do. Less than amateur hour.

Now since recording is 100% subjective, you are cordially invited to over modulate, over optimize, oversaturate and overload your recording as much as you so desire. You will certainly ensure that both myself and TVPostSound shall remain employed.

Eternally LOL
Ms. Remy Ann David

Pro Audio Guest Thu, 12/21/2006 - 14:23
Wow, Thanks for all the help. This site rocks.

no, anyway, I am definitly an amateur, which is why I'm here asking questions rather than charging money to master someone elses mixes. I did however answer my question which is that, sonar hits red at -6db so the song isn't actually clipping. The overoptimized trash you refered to was everything from tom petty, the beatles, kirk franklin, Bob Marley, India arie, and I am still comparing. With the right amount of compressor/limiter , eq, and nudging the volume, I have made waves that compare in size and apparent loudness.
Once again, I am an amateur especcially at mastering, and when I find an engineer who is as respectful of the artist as they are talented, I will entrust my mixes to them. Thanks and have a blessed day.