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Old 08-16-2006, 04:51 PM   #1
wHATcOLOR
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Default the continual folly of bolly - roy thomas baker makes records loud at any volume

from this interview: http://mixonline.com/mag/audio_roy_t...ker/index.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roy Thomas Baker
"As long as you know up front that a certain song is destined for radio and MTV, you should come at it straight out of the gate from the beginning in pre-production. We make sure that the sound is together from day one. The whole idea is to make you sound louder, so that it jumps out in your face. The trick to this has to do with creating apparent volume, as opposed to actual volume. See, the radio station's compressors will react to actual volume and turn the music down. That's why some people's mixes will actually sound quieter than the song previous and the song being played after.

When we first record, we're always saturating. We have all the machines lined up in such a way that we have everything hitting the end stops. I run everything in the red all of the time. I don't look at meters. We run the consoles in the red, especially the tube ones like the Summit and TLA tube mixers and the Neve. We run the machines in the red, right down to the tape. We check back to the tape to make sure that we're not over-saturating."

- From what I understand, you've startled more than a few "proper" engineers with your methodology.

"Oh yeah! All the time. I just whack those faders up. That's what I do. Especially when I'm mixing the drum rides-I would whack them up so loud that they would saturate the mixing board and then they would saturate the tape machine. Obviously, after a certain level, they don't get any louder on tape. It gets louder when you're watching it, but it doesn't get any louder on tape, because it has reached its peak. What happens is the bottom end fills out. It is technically distortion, but it is also bringing out those nice third and fifth harmonics that you want to hear. Doing it this way adds a tremendous value to the bass end. It makes it grind and pump out on the radio more. It's apparent volume, as opposed to actual volume."
fuck you bill

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 05:00 PM   #2
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Well hopefully there won't be clipping on the level of MSOTS :\

edit: I should note that I've heard the latest record by The Darkness.

It's pretty loud, but it's not like, Machina loud.

Last edited by Effloresce : 08-16-2006 at 05:22 PM.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 05:23 PM   #3
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who cares

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 05:55 PM   #4
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what i like to saturate is saturation
due to my boards and meters being saturated, er i mean in the red, red of course being the international sign for saturation, i lost my train of thou saturation

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 05:59 PM   #5
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I don't know. I don't think what's described here is really the same thing as the methods that produced the clipping on MSOTS. I'm sure there are people here who know about this sort of thing a lot better than I do, but my understanding was that MSOTS clipped so badly because they tried to recreate a vintage overdriven analog sound using digital techniques and equipment. Only problem was that when you overdrive a track on digital, the peaks just cut off and create the nasty grating distortion we got instead of the warmer more pleasant distortion you'd get from overdriving tape. What's described above sounds to me more like how you'd go about creating the analog distortion effect the "right" way.

I could be totally wrong on this, but it looks to me like Billy realized that his attempt on MSOTS to create that 70's distorted sound on the record failed miserably, and now he's bringing in someone who actually knows how to do it.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 06:11 PM   #6
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I'm just happy he appears to be taking a back seat on the producing this time. RTB is unlikely to fuck up the record if the songs are any good. Billy should just concentrate on the writing and performing aspects instead of trying to wear all the hats at once.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 07:00 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Corganist
I don't know. I don't think what's described here is really the same thing as the methods that produced the clipping on MSOTS. I'm sure there are people here who know about this sort of thing a lot better than I do, but my understanding was that MSOTS clipped so badly because they tried to recreate a vintage overdriven analog sound using digital techniques and equipment. Only problem was that when you overdrive a track on digital, the peaks just cut off and create the nasty grating distortion we got instead of the warmer more pleasant distortion you'd get from overdriving tape. What's described above sounds to me more like how you'd go about creating the analog distortion effect the "right" way.

I could be totally wrong on this, but it looks to me like Billy realized that his attempt on MSOTS to create that 70's distorted sound on the record failed miserably, and now he's bringing in someone who actually knows how to do it.

You couldn't be more right.

There is a huge difference between tape saturation/compression, and hyper-limiting. Both achieve huge aparrent volume, but only one sacrifices audio quality. See Zwan.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 07:04 PM   #8
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how does brendo_91 know so much about everything when he's such a youngster

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 07:13 PM   #9
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because im really brendo_91 i fooled you silly pants.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 07:14 PM   #10
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i thought you were rock lobster, and from canada, not australia

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 07:15 PM   #11
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the problem with msots was it was rushed to get finished. the end result is shit. you get what you put into it.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 07:15 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by big white horse hung
i thought you were rock lobster, and from canada, not australia
oh yeah. sometimes i forget which username i am.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 07:30 PM   #13
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least they could do is use tape. they can afford it after all. if they want to do this saturated sound thing. it *is* possible to make different mixes for an album and the radio promo, if they want the singles to be saturated b/c everyone else is mixed too loud.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 08:39 PM   #14
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are people here implying that any of this is going to be played on the radio

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 08:52 PM   #15
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This is incredible, how does he make a CD that's loud even when you turn the volume down? The kids will get a real kick out of that parlor trick.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 09:08 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by big white horse hung
how does brendo_91 know so much about everything when he's such a youngster
This stuff is what I studied, this is what I enjoy doing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aztec litany service
least they could do is use tape. they can afford it after all. if they want to do this saturated sound thing. it *is* possible to make different mixes for an album and the radio promo, if they want the singles to be saturated b/c everyone else is mixed too loud.
RTB is known for use of tape - it is a vital part of his methodology.

For what it's worth Zwan was done on tape too... so tape alone does not a good record make

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 10:01 PM   #17
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Just so you know there is a difference between analog saturation (which can be nice and pleasant and is used often and is what he is referring to) and digital saturation/clipping which is what is wrong with MSOTS.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 10:10 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spank_thru101
Just so you know there is a difference between analog saturation (which can be nice and pleasant and is used often and is what he is referring to) and digital saturation/clipping which is what is wrong with MSOTS.
Care to explain this further?

Anyway, as much as I know you will find this painful to do, listen to the latest album by The Darkness if you want an idea of what his production antics are like. I can't say the band's actual music is very good, but hey, at least it'll give you an idea. It's a very loud production, but it still sounds really clear, too. It doesn't sound TOO loud in the sense that there's this clipping/crackling noise and bass drowning out everything else. It sounds pretty damn clean to me.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 10:19 PM   #19
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well I will give the man all the credit in the world - he did produce Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 10:24 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Effloresce
Care to explain this further?
when a signal is sent to analog tape and then overloaded or saturated it will compress and distort naturally,its forced/smushed to fit onto the tape. This technique is used on prolly every professional analog recording to this day. But when a signal is sent into a computer and overloaded digitally or turned up so loud that it cant fit onto the digital "tape" it will clip, drop out and or create a very unpleasant hissing/crackly sound.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 10:47 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Effloresce
Care to explain this further?
Analog tape works in such a way that there are only so many magnetic particles that can be polarized one way or the other by the tape head. Tape's saturation point is reached when there are no more particles that can be polarized in that direction by the tape head.

What sets this apart from digital clipping, is the onset of the distortion, where digital distortion is a very sudden thing, creating harmonics that sound ugly and harsh, but analog tape saturation is a gradual onset into soft clipping which creates harmonics which are considered musical by our ears.

Try this site:

http://ipsologic.com/briefs/tape_saturation.html

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 11:29 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ravenguy2000
are people here implying that any of this is going to be played on the radio


 
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Old 08-16-2006, 11:36 PM   #23
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the whole one-upping of the loudness stakes for radio play is kinda disturbing ... radio has a lot to answer for imho what with their 80:1 limiting ratios and shit

My favourite Pumpkins album, production wise (and songs wise!) is still Adore ... and that is NOT a "loud" album by any measure

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 11:52 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brendo_91
Analog tape works in such a way that there are only so many magnetic particles that can be polarized one way or the other by the tape head. Tape's saturation point is reached when there are no more particles that can be polarized in that direction by the tape head.

What sets this apart from digital clipping, is the onset of the distortion, where digital distortion is a very sudden thing, creating harmonics that sound ugly and harsh, but analog tape saturation is a gradual onset into soft clipping which creates harmonics which are considered musical by our ears.
fuck this. ears need to be more open-minded.

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 11:56 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mercurial
My favourite Pumpkins album, production wise (and songs wise!) is still Adore ... and that is NOT a "loud" album by any measure

totally. i feel like i've said it a million times, but the moment when i was most impressed with bill and encouraged for what lay ahead was hearing to sheila. it's so... airy! man. the best

 
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Old 08-16-2006, 11:59 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mablak
This is incredible, how does he make a CD that's loud even when you turn the volume down? The kids will get a real kick out of that parlor trick.
here's the secret. they record, mix, and master everything normally but before pressing the cd they invert the data. all the 1s become 0s and all the 0s become 1s. this way when you turn the volume on your hi-fi down, it actually gets louder. much like the Chinese finger trap, you'd be surprised how many people fail to realize they only have to turn the knob the other way to make the volume go back down.

 
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Old 08-17-2006, 01:21 AM   #27
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Well I read the quote and was not happy but then I read brendo's explanation and felt much better about it. I will check out that Darkness album, I'm pretty sure I already downloaded it at some point.
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Old 08-17-2006, 04:39 AM   #28
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The word I was looking for was "euphonic"...

 
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Old 08-17-2006, 07:24 AM   #29
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Spank_thru and brendo seem to have different explanations; which one is more accurate, or are you both right?

 
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Old 08-17-2006, 07:33 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Effloresce
Spank_thru and brendo seem to have different explanations; which one is more accurate, or are you both right?
I'm gonna go with Brendo on this one.

 
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