What kind of processors do you use on your master bus?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by hxckid88, Apr 8, 2008.

  1. Codemonkey

    Codemonkey Well-Known Member

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    But someone's paying you to (I hope) and I take it some producer is pointing a stick at you and shouting "Louder! Louder!"
     
  2. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, but it doesn't really help... Even when the client is present and I make a volume-adjusted A/B, they acknowledge that the loud one sounds like [SELF-CENSORED] by comparison, but that's the one they want.

    Although seemingly more frequently, they're stopping a little shorter of "completely insane" than they were a year or so ago...
     
  3. Codemonkey

    Codemonkey Well-Known Member

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    The tides are turning are they?
    Good, in a few years we can be back to normal.
     
  4. Now I'm no proponent of the current volume standard. In fact, it's unattainable by me: the sonic equivalent of a Victoria's Secret model. But I'm sure some albums (Our Lady Peace's Gravity comes to mind) would have lacked a lot of guts without the insane mastering.

    My car's CD system starts to impart sound once it's driven beyond a certain level. Surely this is some reason to make the source material as loud as is possible, right?
     
  5. Crankitup

    Crankitup Guest

    I'm doing some self-mastering right now, and all I have to say is that L2 / L3 plugins suck a**!!! I have them set with a -5 threshold and it sounds like I strapped a high ratio compressor and some distortion over the master bus. I guess it's time to hire a real mastering engineer...
     
  6. TheFraz

    TheFraz Active Member

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    Feb 5, 2007
    The L2 plugins do suck. hell the standard digi compressor works better when you switch it to brick wall mode.

    In class we did a few side by sides of a real L2 and a bunch of digital compressors.

    On their own the digi was the winner. chained together I am a big fan of two req axes. whats great about the axe is that it is cheap as hell, sounds great and automatically adjusts the ratio and release times. at first I was real hesitant to allow of a compressor to make such choices for me, but it truly does a stellar job.
     
  7. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

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    Huh...the L2 and L3 are actually quite nice. They MUST be used properly though. The mix has to be pretty loud already going into them - don't try to squash the mix using the L2 or it (and just about any other BW limiter I've ever heard) will start to crap out.
     
  8. TheFraz

    TheFraz Active Member

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    Feb 5, 2007
    the l2 hardware works like a dream. its the plugins that dont compare. At least not from my experiences.
     
  9. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

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    The L2 hardware and the plugs are the same.

    I've owned and used both for years - there's no difference. Once you convert your signal into digital using the onboard converters, you're essentially hitting a software L2 inside the box.

    I personally prefer the hardware version simply because the conversion is GREAT and the convenience of not having to have another plug-in loaded when I'm going out of the box anyway is great too. It helps me keep my sanity when coming back in knowing I won't clip the digital input bus.
     
  10. TheFraz

    TheFraz Active Member

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    I would love to see the two used side by side in your hands then.
     
  11. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

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    Well...the one is very heavy and might require 2 hands...and the other is a virtual device (software) though I could hold the box...
    ;-)

    (JK of course).

    I think it's all a matter of how they're used in the scheme of things. Again, with the software L2, there are tons of plugs loaded before it usually and you're usually trying to keep those plugs from clipping the bus and then squash the mix with the L2. Or the opposite, you set up all the plugs on the mix and then allow it to clip but going to the L2, it limits it.

    Whereas with the hardware L2, you'd get your analog mix pumping along at a pretty decent (to insane) level and then you strap the processor on as it's going into the digital domain.

    Granted, on the hardware L2, everything happens at 48 bit so your 24 bit signal is getting adjusted to the right in the binary world to keep from clipping that actual digital bus, then the L2 is applied and the signal dithered back down to 24 bit. In your software, it's doing the same basic thing only operating at 32 float (hopefully). The number differences between the two (32 and 48) shouldn't make any difference in this application.
     
  12. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Well-Known Member

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    No, it overdrives the system's input stage -- Distorting it at the earliest possible chance.

    Amplifiers aren't designed for the kind of input levels we're feeding them. Making discs as loud as they are now is bad for everything, start-to-finish.

    My car stereo sounds like crap when it's overdriven. Yeah, it "imparts a sound" on it - that's for sure. But when it's distorted on the way in, there's never any reason to turn it up to where it's designed to run.
    I'm all about getting it to punch -- But I have never, NEVER, EVER, not once, never ever ever ever, heard a recording at -10dBRMS that didn't sound amazingly better at -14dBRMS. Never. Ever. Not ever, not even close, no comparison, ever.
     
  13. cjogo

    cjogo Guest

    Presently we use a Behringer DEQ 2496 to a Masterliknk --tried a lot in the last 30 years ..settled on the gear we now incorporate .
     

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