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Messages - Dichotomy

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R&A Graveyard / Re: Notifications
« on: February 04, 2016, 09:12:59 am »
I apologize. Clearly, I've offended you. That was not my intention. Your rebuke could be used to shut down many suggestions. If you were working with TPF (in some technical manner) it could be taken seriously. I tried to have you confirm some authority; you said you'd be guessing. I only meant to reply: it doesn't help the conversation to make guesses and discuss them as facts... politely, let's not get outside of our purview. Again, I'm sorry to have provoked your outburst.

This will create a heavy load on the server. I disagree.
Out of the box, SMF is coded with the potential to notify every user immediately of every post. This is evident in the profile settings (Profile>Modify Profile>Notifications), and in the source (Sources/Notify.php:85,159 & Sources/Post.php:2460). This scenario is, of course, an edge case, but would not be exceeded by implementing this suggestion. The point has already been made that it could reduce the amount of actual notifications by increasing their specificity.

Yes, but this will send an email everytime someone replies to the thread, which won't necessarily relate to what you've subscribed for. Whereas getting notified everytime you get quoted, will directly concern what you said, it's much more accurate in my opinion.
My only concern is that I don't think any of us need another website bombarding us with notifications, so I would just want the notifications to be as specific to the user as possible... if that makes sense.

Maybe you're thinking the suggestion is to parse every post for the ~2650 member names in PHP with regex... so yes, poor architecture like that could cause some load. SMF is not a modern web application. Ignoring the if(!defined('SMF')) and global variable blasphemy, that it sends email notifications without a queue is crazy. As is, the code will choke at scale... but < 500 posts/day is within the performance of the infrastructure.

I don't think the people in charge would add to the codebase in SMF's antiquated style... but that's my opinion, not a fact.

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Master Channel while Mixing
« on: January 23, 2016, 05:55:42 am »
I think it's best to start out with a clean master channel - though I advocate system-wide analysis plugins just for ease of use. I have a spectral analyzer on my master chain, and I'm about to add something I got from the Start to Finish videos on Progressive House - A high-cut filter set at somewhere around 70-100 Hz that I can turn on and off while I'm mixing to help check the low end.
That's the best use of the master channel I've read at TPF! :D I don't think having audio processors on the master channel is a good idea while you're mixing. To create a solid mixdown, you have to be able to hear the largest dynamic range your gear can recreate... anything that impairs that is (in my opinion) a hindrance to creativity.

I have an audio interface that displays audio analytics from the hardware. It doesn't use the CPU, and I can minimize the DAW and leave them up (I don't even close that program much anymore). I try to keep between 4-6 primary busses, and run them to a A&H Xone-92. It's great for soloing and temporarily EQing. The mixer routes back to the audio interface so I can see x-y plots (etc.) of busses or the mixdown.

So, you can see why I'd speak up and +1 Mussar's reply. A bit more clicking, but it's the same idea. If you can separate metering from your DAW (even a laptop computer will do), you'll thank yourself for it!

About your TP Basslane plugin, I'd move it to the instruments you want to affect (a bus/return).

R&A Graveyard / Re: Notifications
« on: January 23, 2016, 02:31:02 am »
How do you get there without using that link? I can't seem to find it in the menus
Currently, you cannot. You may wait to see if this is added. In the interim, I suggest creating a bookmark with your browser.

I just said it will create a heavy load on the server. I could take an educated guess as to what they are using, but if I'm right I don't take to post it to the public.
Sutor, ne ultra crepidam.

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Producing for the mix??
« on: January 21, 2016, 12:33:30 pm »
Does anybody have some specific tips for making sure your production is suitable for a clean mix? Once I get to the mixing stage of a track I usually realize I have too many mid-range instruments, and I'm not sure how to avoid this. I know the obvious answer is "stop using too many mid-range instruments," but does anyone have a method they use to keep themselves in check while composing their track? Like for instance, how many instruments per frequency range are in a typical track of yours?

Sorry if my question is a bit unclear–wrote this in a bit of a rush. Thanks!
What's "too many" instruments? You just need... MOAR COWBELL!! ;D Presumably, you're adding these instruments deliberately and they have purpose in your music. I don't see any reason to curtail that behavior. Just organize them in the mixdown.

If you're going for a "wall of sound" style mix, simply spread them out in the stereo field to create a fat, wide stereo image. With a lot of mid-range instruments, position them in some logical fashion... i.e. lead voices / instruments dead center & present (12:00), support & harmonics (10:30 & 1:30), etc. Panning will place them left & right (x axis). Use gentle EQ boosts to lift (highs) and lower (lows) sounds (y axis). Use volume and "effects" for presence (z axis). Use compression to "pin" an instrument in space and give it priority in that spot. Compressed sounds are less susceptible to being masked.

If you have reverb on your percussion, use a noise gate on the reverb to tame it. You'll have more room for instruments. With reverb on instruments, shortening the decay time and adding some pre-delay can open up a mix.

Also, it helps me to establish a "back wall" in the z-axis... the softest level before something sounds like unintelligible noise, and think in levels (6 usually) up to the loudest sounds on level 1. The levels don't have to be rigid (the human brain will pick out level 2.3 from 2.7 just fine), it's just a guide.

Great voice, btw!

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Don't trust your ears!
« on: January 19, 2016, 05:40:34 am »
wouldn't the umbrella term just be... panning? under the larger umbrella of stereo image? why is that not sufficient?

i think all of these terms can be used to describe mixing aesthetics, both on a fundamental and an advanced level. and because of that, it is the language shared by beginners and professionals alike (although the professionals are much more likely to use them properly). again, if you can provide an example where it's not sufficient, i'd love to reconsider.
Awesome! :D

Consider this:
Using formatting to indicate "technical terms" and "theory vocabulary" (making a distinction for the purpose of this discussion) ... all part of the taxonomy of "mixing theory."

An explanation: the stereo field is the interacting sound waves in the area between a pair of stereo monitors. The stereo image is what is perceived by the brain when situated properly in a stereo field. 3D mixing is a method of creating a multi-dimensional stereo image by use of panning, equalization, volume, and effects. Elements may be superimposed (fighting), or blocked by the intensity of another element (masking).

That's really simple... and is covered by simple technical vocabulary. (hopefully in those links)

Establishing theory: Imaging is created by a mixing engineer placing elements of a mix in specific places in the stereo field, thereby creating a deliberate stereo image. (e.g. "Dyro's Foxtrot has amazing imaging!") If elements in a mix have identically opposite placement with respect to each other, the imaging is symmetric in that dimension. If elements are weighted or unbalanced in a dimension, it is asymmetric. When the stereo image replicates that of a live performance, it is transparent... and also has an orientation of either audience or performer. Otherwise it is synthetic.

Using theory in discussion (separate hypothetical statements): Often times, emotional dynamics can be enhanced by using asymmetric imaging to highlight a change in arrangement. I'm going to use the opposite orientation of the original imaging in my remix as an artistic statement. If transparent imaging differs for each genre (as a Rock band sets up differently than a Jazz band), all electronic music must presumably use synthetic imaging. Perhaps one day, synthetic imaging styles in electronic music will be named after influential artists who prefer or originate them... or even their location if a geographic area produces common imaging.


With this example we have a simple framework for discussing our preferences, recognizing the methods of others, and can communicate high-level ideas without relegating to descriptions. We can cover more ground, intellectually. Also, and this is important, we include the multitude of actual instances of these terms in our framework (i.e. the many ways to position elements following various descriptions) so that artists with similar but different techniques can readily establish a common ground or distinct separation. By defining the "box" and organizing the ideas "in the box", we also recognize those "outside the box." We even highlight the uncharted area as potential for new creative expression. In evolving a folk taxonomy, we also acknowledge that which is outside it... and eventually expand our framework to accommodate new ideas.

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Don't trust your ears!
« on: January 18, 2016, 11:52:34 pm »
Quote from: lopryo
you said that, whether or not this language exists, you seek to make our discussions "more efficient". what makes our current form of discussion objectively less "efficient" to you? many producers have learned on their own and have seen vast success, using only the information and discussions readily available on the internet. why are you trying to re-invent the wheel?"
The terms in a folk taxonomy are always more efficient in communication than descriptions of the named concepts. In fact, folk taxonomies often arise from portmanteaus and phonetic combinations of the descriptions they replace. Imagine no musical genres existed and we used descriptions. We'd have to recite some (hopefully succinct) phrase to reference a style. "The fast techno with the drums and bass, and uses that popularly sampled drum fill." Clearly, this is not in accordance with the world around us. I see a similar disconnect in mixing discussions. I'd like to bridge it.

I deleted it because it felt like it was a little bit too on the offensive, but great advice like that is everywhere on this forum and the internet already. which is why everyone here insists that your pursuit seems misguided
It's okay... really. I'm not going to report you to a moderator for anything you say (within reason). It's not like you said something overtly pejorative ::) ... and even if you did, I understand discussion can get a bit rowdy when the participants are passionate. (You too Mussar & wayfinder: it's cool... no hard feelings).

here's a couple more links. there's a lot of overlap but these delve a little further into audio & electrical terminology

it would also help if you could be more specific. i.e. rather than provide a vague fill-in-the-blank example, give a specific problem that you think we lack the proper terminology to solve. i think the vagueness of this thread is what's most frustrating.
Thank you for sharing some of your bookmarks. +1 I'll bet these are visited often by beginners. Maybe you're starting to see what I see? Notice that while they describe useful tools, a few actions, and expand acronyms, they don't describe any mixing aesthetics. Have you found anything depicting what Mussar wrote of in his post... and that recreating the stereo image of a live band is only one possibility of many in some umbrella term?

Quote from: lopryo
I think most accomplished musicians do not need to consult charts or graphs while doing their work. these are learning tools, but they do not define the way that people work or communicate when approaching every day, practical applications. the same applies to audio engineering principals and mixing theory.
Exactly! Most accomplished musicians do not need to consult charts or graphs. Are there charts and graphs available for them to consult? Yes. If a musician says, "it's a 1-4-5 in C# major," you know what they mean. By "define," I expect you mean to suggest I think the terms decide actions in advance. There agree with you: no, they typically do not. They can, but very often they simply describe the way people work and are used to communicate when approaching everyday, practical applications. That is their function. The actions come first; theory enables them to be concisely communicated. For newcomers, they provide structure to use until the taxonomy is limiting.

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Don't trust your ears!
« on: January 18, 2016, 09:35:30 pm »
Woah! Your other post (deleted now) had some really great counter arguments! The post by Mussar you referenced is well worded and a great example of descriptive communication. +2

here is what you're looking for. these are most of the term used by producers while discussing mixing techniques and "theory". i would have assumed you are familiar with most of them by now, but the way you continue to insist that we need to re-define our way of communicating makes me think that you've never actually sought out something like this before.
I wish that were it! I do! That's a great resource... like a description of notes, intervals, rhythm, modes, and chords. A simple foundation for discussing higher level topics like strophic and rondo form. Have you found a similar taxonomy for high-level topics in "mixing theory"? I've read a few people who insist it doesn't exist.

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Don't trust your ears!
« on: January 18, 2016, 08:34:52 pm »
Trainwreck is kind of an understatement at this point. OP is [...] so wrapped up their Quest for the Holy Grail of Mixing that they are falling prey to the same mistakes as the knights of the Crusades: The Holy Grail is not an object to acquire, but a philosophical ideal to reach for but never fully attain.
;D Yeah, this kitchen's on fire! Thanks for your replies... I really do appreciate them! Also, you've been dropping some great insight around the forum. I enjoy your posts.

There are a lot of kids in my classes who will ask questions about mixing and what to do with certain things, and there is one answer that they received: "It depends on the situation, just add what you think it needs." All the terminology you seem to be hunting for is either nonexistent, nonstandard, or mostly subjective (e.g. "bright" means the same general thing, but can be achieved in multiple different ways so it's hard to lock down what is MEANT by bright at times). Yes, we have terms like SMPTE Time Code and Fletcher-Munson Curve and Formants and all that good stuff, but they are not things that apply to the areas you want them to be applied to. There is no set term for "proper headroom" or whatever.
Ok. Can we (TPF members) come up with a term together? Would you, as a student be less or more receptive to: "It depends on the situation, some people use a ____, an ____, or a ______. In EDM, ____ is typical, except remixes of Pop that use _____ (which has a similar sound to ____)." With the understanding that the terms could be looked up, reproduced, understood, altered ("seasoned to taste", if you will), or built upon (adding to the vocabulary)?

An example of adding to an existing vocabulary: the "Wall of Sound" recording / mixing technique created by Phil Spector.

Going back to your OP, you say that it's obvious that there has to be some sort of "standard procedure", yet it's somehow ONLY obvious to you. Now you have multiple people telling you the opposite [...].
I've seen this recently. Here:

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Don't trust your ears!
« on: January 18, 2016, 08:05:22 pm »
Thank you for your reply. Your contribution to this trainwreck is appreciated. :)

you are either seeking techniques or discussion that is no different than the rest of the discussion on the boards, or you seek something that doesn't exist.
See my previous post. The "Ok, I can yield..." bit.

sure, you can discuss audio theory as it pertains to the proofs and formulas and empirical data that fills up textbooks. but when it comes to the PRACTICAL application of audio techniques in mixing, the school and textbook information ultimately boils down to the same "armchair mixing theory crap" that you are shunning. and the engineers who have been doing this for decades are using the same language that is commonly used on forums like these (hell, many of those engineers even hang out on forums)
Music Theory is very well discussed and very specific. Musicians have been using it for quite a while with varying degrees of specificity. Do you think an accepted vocabulary for Mixing Theory is completely new territory? Are you perhaps insisting it is and must stay that way?

Have you noticed the imaging in Dyro's music? He consistently pans drums from the audience perspective... The Rolling Stones are known to do this too. Many bands and artists (it's been mentioned in some books and on forums) are polarized about audience vs. player perspective in drum kit/fill panning. Maybe you can point me to this discussion on this forum?

please, enlighten us, and explain how this information could practically be applied to your mixing process. when you're setting your levels or setting note velocity, are you really going to reach for a graph before you just set it by ear?
Do you reach for a graph (or maybe a chart) before you write a chord progression?

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Don't trust your ears!
« on: January 18, 2016, 12:05:50 pm »
What this school provides is a chance to network with my peers and with professionals in the industry [...].
... that's possible on an Internet forum too!

The concept of design patterns is useful in the context of programming, but perhaps less so in the field of music.
... and yet "music theory" is exactly that - a taxonomy of patterns and concepts.

This mythical Heavenly Script in which "professionals" supposedly converse does not exist.
What is it exactly you're trying to get at? What is your expected result of this discussion?
I wish I had better terms to use than "glossary" or "index"... lexicon maybe?

A "folk taxonomy"... that's the term I was looking for.

Ok, I can yield a bit. Even if a useful vocabulary for discussing mixing theory exists in or outside the resources where I've seen similar things, no one replying to this topic knows it. Is there any reason to assume we couldn't create such a thing? Rather than using idiosyncratic descriptions, could we make our own discussions more efficient?

Special thanks to Mussar for taking the time to ask questions! You really got me thinking. Why would anyone link to TPF? I've been saying the cookbooks should be thrown out... but they're not garbage! Their usefulness just stays isolated and hidden away until they've been collected, organized, summarized, and had their commonalities named. Unfortunately, it isn't reasonable to assume a group of strangers would organize their efforts without being cajoled by an ascetic peer or led by a charismatic celebrity. I wonder which will happen first.

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Don't trust your ears!
« on: January 17, 2016, 11:05:13 pm »
If you were gonna start stalking my social media profiles (super creepy, by the way - you went back like six months to find a picture of me), why'd you even bother asking? But yea, if someone's gonna get all weird about it like you maybe I should make my twitter less informative.

And what do you mean by "defaults" to a discipline? What exactly is different between your list and my professors putting all of that same stuff on a syllabus and talking about each one in a specific sequence? What is it exactly you're trying to get at? What is your expected result of this discussion?
I clicked two links (and scrolled twice). :o Now I'm afraid you'll find a way to dislike whatever I reply. I bothered because I thought you might be proud to mention your achievements. Whops! I'm making an effort to understand what wayfinder meant by "A solid education will give you solid defaults, but it will not give you a magic bullet." To me, "defaults" meant rudimentary guidelines to follow when approaching a new task (e.g. use a 1:4 ratio & a max of 6dB of gain reduction on compressors until you develop your own ideals). Does "default" mean something different to you?

The difference in mentioning "structure" and a school syllabus is very slim indeed... but apparently includes your reluctance to type and the money you paid. I understand, that can be an insurmountable barrier for some. I hate it when people get for free what I had to pay for. Everyone should do their own legwork and suffer through the trials I did... jk, that's silly.

Initially, I made a devil's advocate post (sentiment I don't agree with... but still logical) to see if anyone would slip into a discussion of mixing theory without a "Post your armchair Mixing Theory crap here" topic. Not even close... all the replies have been very defensive. People seem to insist the point of TPF is to condescendingly answer questions, pet each other's egos, and spam for feedback. I didn't want to make another place for people to "fix the n00bs"... but it happened anyway. To me, this forum has been a lackluster resource... very little information is actually here... it's a bunch of cookbook recipes and links to other recipes. Not to say it's been all bad. Someone actually posted a link to an illegal download of the book mentioned below... and yes, it's available for legal purchase on Amazon.

What was I expecting. Instant rebuttal... yes, a bit.. hence the clickbait title. I was hoping to be pleasantly surprised by at least one person. It would have been really cool to see something new.

Maybe a correlation between something like this (public domain) image from Wikipedia and the "6 Levels of Volume" as detailed in David Gibson's "The Art of Mixing: A Visual Guide to Recording, Engineering, and Production"

No, nothing like that... those things definitely don't exist. By all means, continue posting tips and tricks. I'll mostly be just a lurker in the future. 8)

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Don't trust your ears!
« on: January 17, 2016, 09:22:37 pm »
The "structure" I'm talking about is a class syllabus - if you've ever taken a class at any school or through any educational program ever, I guarantee you know what kind of structure wayfinder and I are talking about with regards to getting a scholastic education in music. If you need textbooks, I suggest amazon or Chegg. I promise you any book on music theory and any book on the technical aspects of audio engineering will have all the same information as the ones assigned by my university. ... it's everything that gets talked about on this forum. It's just a matter of doing the legwork yourself.

And you're asking me to reveal a lot of very personal information online without really even knowing who I am at all, so I don't really feel comfortable sharing it. It's not really an appropriate line of questioning to give to a complete stranger.
Woah woah! Chill out, man! I'm sorry if I offended you. Seriously, consider removing the name of your university, your name, and pictures of yourself from your twitter account... or link a different account to TPF.

A class syllabus is a schedule... an outline of the contents of a curriculum. That's not the same (as I suspected) as "defaults" to a discipline. I thought you might mention structure something like:
"The six main elements to a great mix: Balance, Frequency range, Panorama, Dimension, Dynamics, Interest" ... taken from Bobby Owsinski's "The Mixing Engineers Handbook

R&A Graveyard / Re: Notifications
« on: January 17, 2016, 08:29:05 pm »
Most forums do not have a notification system due to the heavy CPU load. It would make more sense to have a way to view your posts that been replied to. I'm surprised SMF does not have this out-of-the-box. Or i might be overlooking it.

My question remains unanswered.
How do you know the specifics of the TPF web server(s?) necessary to make a feature vs. load assessment?

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Don't trust your ears!
« on: January 17, 2016, 07:59:40 pm »
And the most valuable lesson they've taught me so far is how important it is to shut up and just do the work.
It's the same with programming. No matter how much theory you consume, it doesn't present itself as useful until you code and see first-hand where the pitfalls addressed in that theory show up in an actual workflow. Still, that structure allows you to quickly identify those areas and sidestep them by applying the personal values you've developed from learning it.

As someone attending an accredited institution who is studying music production, I can assure you that it is not true. Engineering/Production schools do not teach you the things that you are asking for - they provide a structure to guide you through the process of learning it yourself, like wayfinder said.
I don't need this school to teach me the stuff that I'm learning. I own books that have all the knowledge my teachers will give over the next couple of years, and I have enough equipment that I can probably putz around until I figure it out. What this school provides is a chance to network with my peers and with professionals in the industry, a chance to focus on building a portfolio of work, and a mentored learning experience.
If you're talking about what wayfinder said about "defaults", I'm not sure that's the same thing as "structure" due to the language barrier he mentioned. Would you provide a specific example of the "structure" you're speaking of? What are some of the names and authors of the textbooks used at the institution you're currently attending? What's its name? What program, course, or curriculum have you've chosen? How long have you been attending?

Thanks for your contribution! Your post/honor ratio needs a hand :) +2

Mixing/Mastering / Re: Don't trust your ears!
« on: January 17, 2016, 08:39:29 am »
Nobody said you can't learn stuff from books and courses, they're super good to find techniques to try, habits to form, and so on; I say you cannot learn from them about the specific material you are working on, because there hasn't been anything quite like it yet. A solid education will give you solid defaults, but it will not give you a magic bullet. How do you think the people who write the books and courses have arrived at their knowledge? Education-directed trial and error is certainly quicker, but it's not qualitatively different from self-learning, and the absence of formal or otherwise outside-facilitated education doesn't preclude anyone from good results or knowledge in the field.
Yay! Well said! +2 That's probably the greatest thing I've read on this forum to date! Perhaps you've heard of American film & television composer Danny Elfman (Batman, Edward Scissorhands, Beetlejuice, Sleepy Hollow, Mission Impossible, The Simpsons and others, also the lead singer of the band Oingo Boingo). He's one of my personal heroes and is well known as an autodidact (self-taught) musician.

Thanks for your advice and contribution! :)

I feel much of your rebuttal is based on psychological projection. "Set aside" doesn't mean "put down" to me, but to you it does. You think I'm looking for simple solution, because (at one time) you were looking for a simple solution. You have not found resources fitting a vague description and insist they aren't around. In reality, mixing theory, the aesthetics of various mixing technique, and frameworks (visual & vocabulary) for the discussion of mixing theory are published in books. The blowback from this devil's advocate, clickbait, incendiary topic tells me very few have read them.

Now I can't help but think: has everyone on TPF been teaching themselves? Is TPF made better by 5 different topics on pink mixing and more about compressors? I guess creative people are scared to death of being pigeonholed... fear always trumps logic. Why would a Classically trained mixing engineer be on an Internet forum anyway?

I hope all the "Honor" I've been giving people stays when I delete this topic.

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