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In this course, author Bobby Owsinski reveals industry tips, tricks, and techniques for producing professionally mixed audio on any digital audio workstation. He offers recommendations for setting up an optimal listening environment, highlights the most efficient ways to set up and balance a mix, and shows how to build a powerful sound with compression. The course also explains how to master the intricacies of EQ; incorporate reverb, delay, and modulation effects; and generate the final mix.
As I said in the previous video, a gate is sort of a reverse compressor that can be used to cover up any noises or buzzes or coughs or any kind of low-level noises that were recorded on the track. In this video I am going to show you how to use a noise gate to clean up a guitar track. So the first thing we're going to do is have a listen to this track so you can hear the noise and you can hear the guitar play when it comes in. (music playing) Now what you are hearing there is a very loud Marshall that's set up so it sounds good for the guitar player, but as a result, it has a very loud buzz, and you can hear some string noise and everything prior to the guitar entering.
So what we are going to try to do is get rid of that, so we are going to bring our expander/gate in and just have a quick listen. These are some random settings. And let's hear what happens. (music playing) Now if you take notice, this worked great from standpoint that it got rid of the noise at the beginning, but it also didn't sound all the good when the guitar entered, and that's where some tweaking on the parameters really helps.
So the firs thing we are going to do is play with the threshold, and let's bring that down to a place where it kind of works for us. Let's just see what happens down here. (music playing) That wasn't that good because it really didn't get rid of the noise at the front, and that's what we are trying to do. (music playing) Now that was kind of perfect because it got rid of the noise at the front of the guitar solo and yet it didn't affect the guitar when it entered, and that's what we are trying to do.
We are trying to make sure that it sounds just as good as if we didn't have gate in yet, get rid of the noise at the same time. Now sometimes when we get rid of the noise completely it sounds unnatural. You don't always have to cut it off completely; just lowering it sometimes is quite enough. Now if you take notice on the left-hand side, you see the in and out meters and another meter called GR, and this is Gain Reduction. And really what it is it's the amount that the gate is attenuating the noise when it opens.
And we're down about -40 now, and really it doesn't have to be that low to be effective. Now if we go to the Range control, we bring it up to -15, -12, somewhere around there, have a listen now. (music playing) So what happened there was you can actually hear some of the buzz before the guitar entered, but it was attenuated enough that you'd never hear it in the track. It would never be one of those things that would stick out or muddy up the track in anyway.
So that's really what we're trying to do: make it sound natural, but attenuate it enough that we don't notice it at all, and never worry about getting it completely eliminated, because sometimes it sounds very unnatural when you do that. So that's how we set up an electric guitar with the gate. We'll take a look at attack and hold and release in context with drums in the next video.
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