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Digital Audio Principles
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Dynamics pt 2: Applying dynamic effects


From:

Digital Audio Principles

with Dave Schroeder

Video: Dynamics pt 2: Applying dynamic effects

Now in the last movie, we looked at the different kinds of dynamics processors that are available as plug-ins, and how they affect sound and show you a few practical applications. We will add a compressor to a voiceover, and then we will also play a gate to a kick-drum track. So let's go ahead and start by selecting our voiceover track and kind of zooming in and giving it a good listen. I am going to go ahead and let that be a little bit bigger, so we can see it. And now we are going to apply a compressor at the file level, so we will bring it in from the AudioSuite, as opposed to using as a real-time, and we are going to go with the Renaissance compressor from the Waves family.
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 50s
    1. Welcome
      50s
  2. 39m 10s
    1. What is sound?
      4m 15s
    2. Hertz and frequency response
      5m 34s
    3. Phase
      2m 39s
    4. Capturing audio
      3m 39s
    5. Sample rate
      6m 16s
    6. Bit depth
      9m 47s
    7. The waveform
      5m 3s
    8. Audio file formats
      1m 57s
  3. 7m 25s
    1. What is a digital audio workstation?
      2m 59s
    2. Typical DAW signal flow
      4m 26s
  4. 50m 33s
    1. What microphones do
      1m 57s
    2. Element types
      5m 0s
    3. Pickup patterns
      6m 51s
    4. Axis
      2m 52s
    5. Frequency response and the proximity effect
      5m 10s
    6. Phase issues
      1m 41s
    7. Microphone types
      8m 44s
    8. Miking vocals
      5m 39s
    9. Miking amplifiers
      2m 17s
    10. Miking drums
      10m 22s
  5. 16m 39s
    1. Cables and connectors overview
      2m 42s
    2. Balanced and unbalanced cables
      3m 19s
    3. Common cable types
      7m 13s
    4. Cable tips
      3m 25s
  6. 12m 16s
    1. What is an I/O device?
      1m 41s
    2. Analog to digital conversion
      3m 10s
    3. Tour of an audio interface
      4m 49s
    4. Interface considerations
      2m 36s
  7. 21m 5s
    1. What is a preamp?
      3m 21s
    2. Input levels
      5m 29s
    3. Padding
      2m 18s
    4. Phantom power
      2m 37s
    5. Phase reverse
      3m 4s
    6. Preamp demo
      4m 16s
  8. 12m 56s
    1. What is a mixer?
      5m 55s
    2. Input section
      1m 17s
    3. Channel strips
      3m 16s
    4. Master section
      2m 28s
  9. 18m 21s
    1. What is monitoring?
      2m 11s
    2. Speakers
      4m 47s
    3. Room considerations
      5m 43s
    4. Headphone types
      3m 50s
    5. Monitoring levels
      1m 50s
  10. 15m 23s
    1. What role do computers play?
      1m 36s
    2. Performance issues
      4m 11s
    3. Hard drives
      4m 38s
    4. Mechanical noise
      2m 10s
    5. Authorization
      2m 48s
  11. 6m 54s
    1. Planning for recording
      54s
    2. Doing a system check
      1m 26s
    3. Planning your inputs
      1m 42s
    4. The recording environment
      2m 52s
  12. 25m 52s
    1. Types of digital audio software
      38s
    2. Multi-track recorders/sequencers
      4m 56s
    3. Two-track recorders/waveform editors
      4m 55s
    4. Loop-based music production software
      5m 44s
    5. Plug-ins
      6m 56s
    6. Other varieties
      2m 43s
  13. 18m 59s
    1. Common components
      46s
    2. The transport
      2m 4s
    3. The toolbar
      3m 19s
    4. The Edit/Arrange window
      4m 42s
    5. The mixer
      5m 8s
    6. The file list
      3m 0s
  14. 19m 17s
    1. Setting up a session
      3m 30s
    2. Assigning inputs and getting signals
      3m 19s
    3. Input modes
      3m 28s
    4. Overdubbing and punching
      5m 14s
    5. Bouncing down
      3m 46s
  15. 19m 42s
    1. What is editing?
      1m 21s
    2. Waveforms
      2m 53s
    3. Making silent cuts and trims
      7m 1s
    4. Fades and automation
      8m 27s
  16. 1h 23m
    1. What are plug-ins?
      3m 0s
    2. Using plug-ins
      6m 11s
    3. EQs
      7m 4s
    4. Dynamics pt. 1: Compressors, limiters, expanders, and gates
      5m 40s
    5. Dynamics pt 2: Applying dynamic effects
      7m 2s
    6. Pitch shifting
      6m 14s
    7. Reverb
      9m 28s
    8. Echo and delay
      6m 23s
    9. Modulation effects: Phaser, flanger, and chorus
      9m 39s
    10. Sound tools pt. 1: About, gain, normalize
      7m 39s
    11. Sound tools pt. 2: Reverse and time compression/expansion
      6m 29s
    12. Sound tools pt. 3: Noise reducers, dither
      8m 11s
  17. 23m 43s
    1. What is MIDI?
      3m 6s
    2. Keyboard controllers
      1m 23s
    3. Computer-based virtual instruments
      1m 6s
    4. Control surfaces
      1m 6s
    5. Recording and editing MIDI
      12m 4s
    6. Virtual instruments
      4m 58s
  18. 27m 29s
    1. What is mixing?
      1m 54s
    2. Some common objectives
      3m 4s
    3. Some useful techniques
      5m 59s
    4. A quick mixing demo
      16m 32s
  19. 18m 48s
    1. What is mastering?
      2m 24s
    2. Sonic maximization
      9m 43s
    3. Final preparations and exporting
      6m 41s
  20. 13m 34s
    1. What is audio compression?
      2m 16s
    2. Popular formats
      2m 9s
    3. Bit rate, sample rate, and channels
      5m 42s
    4. Other adjustments and considerations
      3m 27s
  21. 15m 6s
    1. Essential gear
      7m 36s
    2. Voice recording setups
      1m 43s
    3. The voice production process
      5m 47s
  22. 10m 4s
    1. Analog vs. digital
      2m 48s
    2. Tube vs. solid state
      5m 6s
    3. The continual upgrade
      2m 10s
  23. 18s
    1. Goodbye
      18s

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Digital Audio Principles
7h 57m Appropriate for all Mar 02, 2007

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Whether one is producing music, podcasts, game sounds, or film sound effects, Digital Audio Principles provides the tips and techniques that will make the project a success. Author Dave Schroeder explains the basics of digital audio production techniques and covers the essential hardware and software. He also discusses sound theory, frequency response, the range of human hearing, and dynamic range.

Subjects:
Audio + Music Audio Foundations Acoustics Microphones
Author:
Dave Schroeder

Dynamics pt 2: Applying dynamic effects

Now in the last movie, we looked at the different kinds of dynamics processors that are available as plug-ins, and how they affect sound and show you a few practical applications. We will add a compressor to a voiceover, and then we will also play a gate to a kick-drum track. So let's go ahead and start by selecting our voiceover track and kind of zooming in and giving it a good listen. I am going to go ahead and let that be a little bit bigger, so we can see it. And now we are going to apply a compressor at the file level, so we will bring it in from the AudioSuite, as opposed to using as a real-time, and we are going to go with the Renaissance compressor from the Waves family.

We can see we've got an input over here and the output over here. I've got that voiceover selected, I'll let it play. (Female speaker: Welcome to lynda.com video training podcast for Friday January 19th, 2006.) So we can see where the sound's coming over here, and this is the output and this is the magic threshold. So I am going to play that again and adjust my threshold based on the level of the incoming signal. (Female speaker: Welcome to lynda.com video training podcast for Friday January 19th, 2006.) So now we have a good visual of the volumes above the threshold and below the threshold.

Now, I am going to use this to kind of squash the top end. If we look at the waveform, we can see we have some peaks and then some quiet parts. And I kind of basically I want to take these louder parts and make them a little bit quieter so that I can turn the whole volume of this track up and get as much signal out to the listener as possible. So, let's go back and preview. Now, I'll set the ratio. (Female speaker: Welcome to lynda.com video training podcast for Friday January 19th, 2006.) I will set my attack so that--your attack refers to how fast the effect takes place, and the release is how fast it stops taking place, or when it stops applying the effect. If you have a longer release, it's kind of a slower gradual off, if it's a fast release, it's kind of an on/off, on/off.

And a lot of times you need to have a kind of slow attack and kind of a slow release, so that you don't get a weird sound effect. You want to try to avoid that sound effect being turned up and turned down really quick. I am also going to go ahead over here and turn up our output gain, so that we get a good visual of what's happening. So let's take a look at those, and now I will go ahead, and actually I am going to increase my ratio a little bit here. I want to kind of really squash this. (Female speaker: Welcome to lynda.com video training podcast for Friday January 19th, 2006. Oops) All right, so we will process it, and see what happens to our waveform.

So, see, now we have got a little bit more body on everything, and that's because we increase the gain after we compress things. (Female Speaker: for Friday January 19th, 2006.) Here I will undo it, so we can take a look at the difference. See how our low point's here. We increased the gain of the whole track. Now, if I apply this effect without any gain, we will just see the higher piece go down, so we will add it again. So it made our whole track a lot quieter, but you can see there is not as much of a difference between the peaks and the quiet parts.

Female Speaker: .com video training podcast for Friday January 19th, 2006.) So now I can go in and select this and turn the volume of the whole channel up, which I won't do, but that's what you would do. You can either set the gain here, or you can just set the compression and then apply another plug-in to increase the gain back up to the maximum level. So you get a lot more of the voice signal and fewer of these peaks. Now, let's take a look applying a gate to a kick-drum track. I will switch around here and change my view a little bit for you.

So here is our kick-drum track, we will zoom back out and zoom in. I am going to highlight a little section here. And we will go ahead and give this a listen. I don't know if you can hear that, but I can hear the rim shot right now of the snare in between there, and there we can hear the snare being hit.

So that's all picked up from a drum microphone that was on the bass drum. What I want to do is use a gate to try and get rid of the sounds in between the bass drum hits. So over in my insert--and we will do this in real time-- I am going to load up a gate, and we will send the signal through and take a look and do some settings. I am actually going to go back to our factory defaults, so everything is zero, bypass it, and send it. (drum playing) So here we have the full signal without any gating effect on.

And we see that on the top all that we can see is the reduction, or how much quieter we are going to make things that don't make it to the threshold. So let's go ahead and drag the threshold up, which now is very low, so everything is getting through. There we go. So right around 38, we are starting to see that things are making it to the threshold, and we are turning things down. But we can still hear that drum a little bit, the snare drum that is. (drums playing) So, now we just hear the kick-drum more or less.

Every time it comes up, because it's the loudest thing in the track, everything it hits that threshold, we are saying, hey, let's hear you, we are opening the gate, and we want to hear you. But everything else that doesn't make it, we are just saying, no, the gate is closed, there is no volume on this track unless you are at least this loud. So, here is our threshold. Let me stop that for a second. So this is a great tool to be able to use if you are doing things, especially with drum sets where you have a room mic and then individual mics and you want to really isolate that sound and then go in and apply some EQ.

If you want to apply something to kind of make that kick-drum boomy or brighter or some EQ, you don't necessarily want that EQ to also get onto the snare drum that's bled into, or is also part of, that track that the microphone picked up. So a gate is a great way to isolate a specific sound and then apply effects to it. You could also use this with voices if you have extended periods of time where there isn't speaking. A gate should be applied to voices with a fair amount of caution, and you can come with effects that are a little bit unnatural or jarring. So, try it, play with it, but in the end, trust your ears. If it's sounds a little awkward, you might want to use fades and actually go in and do a lot of editing and take out those periods of noise.

So that's a nice look at a few different ways to use dynamics processing as plug-ins. Next, we will take a look at what you can do with pitch shifting.

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