Getting a vocal to sit in a louder mix. (Finished pg 2)

Get that song on tape! Errr... disk?
User avatar
Larry Mal
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 16264
Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2010 4:25 pm
Location: Saint Louis, MO

Re: Getting a vocal to sit in a louder mix.

Post by Larry Mal » Sat Jan 30, 2021 10:48 am

jorri wrote:
Sat Jan 30, 2021 10:28 am


Strikes me as interesting. Its recommended to level each phrase, or even more detail before compressing...

...but then i was like; what happens in the louder chorus? I guess i have to still automate that myself?
So, what it does is do the automation for you automatically between some parameters that you give it. So you would set a range, shown on the left below, that's you telling the Vocal Rider that you want it to write automation so that everything falls between that minimum and maximum:

Image

Here's the manual.

The Rider slide in the center is just what it sounds like, it's the same as if you had your hands on a fader and were riding the volume yourself, it does it automatically based on the minimum and maximum you told it to do. That Rider shows you what's happening.

The Output there is a boost or cut depending on what you feel you need at the end.

And on top you'll see the Target slide, that's you telling it where you want it to sit in the mix, if you want it to be the loudest thing for instance you could set it to -1dBFS (zero is the absolute highest it could be) and then have every other elements in your mix be quieter.

Since what the Vocal Rider is doing is writing automation into your DAW for you automatically, you can go back and edit the automation later if you wish using your DAWs usual capabilities. So, yes, if you wanted it to swell in the chorus, you could still go back and write in your own automation to make that happen, of course you would want the Target to be set to something like -4dBFS otherwise you would not have any room to increase the volume to.

It's a great tool.
Back in those days, everyone knew that if you were talking about Destiny's Child, you were talking about Beyonce, LaTavia, LeToya, and Larry.

User avatar
jorri
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 2492
Joined: Thu May 07, 2009 1:53 am
Location: bath, UK
Contact:

Re: Getting a vocal to sit in a louder mix.

Post by jorri » Mon Feb 01, 2021 10:11 am

Larry Mal wrote:
Sat Jan 30, 2021 10:48 am
jorri wrote:
Sat Jan 30, 2021 10:28 am


Strikes me as interesting. Its recommended to level each phrase, or even more detail before compressing...

...but then i was like; what happens in the louder chorus? I guess i have to still automate that myself?
So, what it does is do the automation for you automatically between some parameters that you give it. So you would set a range, shown on the left below, that's you telling the Vocal Rider that you want it to write automation so that everything falls between that minimum and maximum:

Image

Here's the manual.

The Rider slide in the center is just what it sounds like, it's the same as if you had your hands on a fader and were riding the volume yourself, it does it automatically based on the minimum and maximum you told it to do. That Rider shows you what's happening.

The Output there is a boost or cut depending on what you feel you need at the end.

And on top you'll see the Target slide, that's you telling it where you want it to sit in the mix, if you want it to be the loudest thing for instance you could set it to -1dBFS (zero is the absolute highest it could be) and then have every other elements in your mix be quieter.

Since what the Vocal Rider is doing is writing automation into your DAW for you automatically, you can go back and edit the automation later if you wish using your DAWs usual capabilities. So, yes, if you wanted it to swell in the chorus, you could still go back and write in your own automation to make that happen, of course you would want the Target to be set to something like -4dBFS otherwise you would not have any room to increase the volume to.

It's a great tool.
Ah, i see. So it is sensing the rest of the mix and placing it in a range above that . Thats cool. It a laborious task editing vocals, comping takes, de-essing manually etc. So saves a job.

User avatar
Telliot
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 10590
Joined: Thu Mar 17, 2011 6:38 pm
Location: Orange County, CA

Re: Getting a vocal to sit in a louder mix.

Post by Telliot » Mon Feb 01, 2021 10:44 am

Bass Rider and Vocal Rider are both great tools if you understand how to set them correctly. I've gotten some harsh results early on, but after some experience I started to understand what it was doing and the best parameters to try and work within. I seem to get the best results when I use several tools in tandem, all doing a little bit, rather than asking one tool to do everything. This plugin seems to work best in that way.
The cool thing about fretless is you can hit a note...and then renegotiate.

User avatar
Larry Mal
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 16264
Joined: Mon Nov 29, 2010 4:25 pm
Location: Saint Louis, MO

Re: Getting a vocal to sit in a louder mix.

Post by Larry Mal » Mon Feb 01, 2021 11:41 am

jorri wrote:
Mon Feb 01, 2021 10:11 am

Ah, i see. So it is sensing the rest of the mix and placing it in a range above that . Thats cool. It a laborious task editing vocals, comping takes, de-essing manually etc. So saves a job.
No, it doesn't sense the rest of the mix that I'm aware of, it's up to you to tell it what range you want the vocals (or bass, with Bass Rider) to sit in and then make everything else be in relation to that.

If it does have any sort of automatic level setting/auto mixing feature I'm unaware of it and would never use that.

But yeah, it does a good job of getting you in the ballpark very quickly.
Back in those days, everyone knew that if you were talking about Destiny's Child, you were talking about Beyonce, LaTavia, LeToya, and Larry.

User avatar
seenoevil II
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 576
Joined: Tue Nov 19, 2019 12:59 pm

Re: Getting a vocal to sit in a louder mix.

Post by seenoevil II » Mon Feb 01, 2021 12:05 pm

mgeek wrote:
Mon Jan 04, 2021 3:20 am
I find distortion often helps getting a vocal to sit right, even on softer songs. Doesn't have to be even audibly distorted as such.
+1

Yeah, I'll often throw an OD on the vocal bus after the EQ and compressors and sometimes after the time effects. It adds a lot of the crispy, toasty high end info that you miss by not having really high end mics or rack gear.

Broader advice that you may already know:

Getting your performance better is always a hot tip, but don't loose sight of the forest for the trees. You may fixate on one element of your performance like volume or pitch, but lose feeling or musicality in the process. Also, maybe invest some time automating the final take to get the volume more broadly consistent before the compression.

Regarding room treatment, you can always throw a duvet over your head and the mic stand. Like a little tent fort. Instant isolation chamber.

High passing is rarely a bad idea with vocals. Free up some energy for more useful frequencies. I usually have one EQ for high-pass and hunting weird resonances (freeing more energy) and a second for coloration.

Mixing is hard. It's like a mirage. No matter how far I walk towards it, it's stays on the horizon. It's a Dunning-Kruger curve that you're forever at the bottom of.

Home recording technology is getting great, but at some point you have to accept that the really great results professionals get have almost everything to do with the quality of the gear they have at the front end. $10k mics, perfectly treated rooms (for tracking and mixing), crazy rack gear etc etc. There comes a point where you just gotta make it sound good enough for your purposes. Could an ace professional mixer get it to sound better than you can? Yes. But even that is like a surgeon cutting an appendix out with a pen knife in a seven eleven parking lot.

Reference music you love and notice what it actually sounds like. Drag it into your session and AB it with your music and other music you like. Look at it with a frequency analysizer and level meter. It's likely lower fi than you think. It's likely weirder and more off kilter than you think. We hear music with our brains, not our ears.

This is turning ranty, but my goalposts are 1). Is there anything offensively wrong with the mix? (weird frequencies, too loud, too quiet, too compressed etc.) 2). Does it sound cool? (Fuck up those drums with OD, put an echo on the vox etc.) If yes to both, then cool. I'm not going to sweat it not being as good as what I physically can't do. Then I listen to the Specials or early TMBG or the Microphones to remember that the music is more important than the mix.
If it wasn't for disappointment, I wouldn't have any appointments.

Post Reply