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Audio sounds a lot more 'dull' after being rec into Ableton
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Production Techniques  
Author Audio sounds a lot more 'dull' after being rec into Ableton
Rupert the not so great
Was just looking for a little help on this, any suggestions would be great. I'll give and example -

So im having a jam with fx pedals on Aux sends on my desk. Before I record it in it sounds fresh and just the way I want it. As soon as I record it in it just doesn't sound the same. Wonder if im missing a trick here? Anyone any suggestions? Sort of sounds muddy and not 'airy'.. If that explanation helps any..

Cheers.
Oldstench
Maybe you have bad converters.
Maybe you have an EQ on the input that's changing the sound.
Maybe you have a plugin on the master channel that's changing the sound.
Maybe the volume is lower on playback from your computer and you feel that it sounds worse because of that.
Maybe your interface has bad connections.
Maybe your cables are bad.
etc.

FWIW what I record in Ableton sounds the same on the way out, so I don't know.
mckenic
Some questions -

In your example are you monitoring through Live or from your desk?
What interface are you using to get sound in/out of Live?
What are the Audio Engine settings in Live set to (16/24/32bit 44.1k/96k etc).
What version of Live are you using?

Are you rendering the audio and thats when there is a difference or is it a difference between what your hearing and whats played back inside Live BEFORE you render it out?

Whats your interface settings, sample rate and bit depth?

There used to be a lot of talk about Abletons render engine but these days it seems like its a moot point when everything is equal.

Ive been using Live since 2 or 3 (could even be 1, its been donkeys years) and dont notice anything like you mentioned - I do notice a difference when using my MBox 2, Line 6 UX2 or Ultralite mk1 interfaces... looking at an X-Air18 for more inputs and Midas pres for hopefully a little bump in sound quality along with the input/output increase...
RhythmDroid
Also, once you record something in, do you double click the clip to open it in the viewer at the bottom of the screen and TURN WARP OFF?

turn warp off

This appears to be the same situation with Elektron Octatrack...if timestretching it enabled, all sorts of weird compression and processing might be taking place even when the pitch and speed are unmodified...

I could be wrong... maybe I'm just superstitious
RhythmDroid
mckenic wrote:
Some questions -

looking at an X-Air18 for more inputs and Midas pres for hopefully a little bump in sound quality along with the input/output increase...


I use the X-Air 18 for inputs and I like it
mckenic
RhythmDroid wrote:
I use the X-Air 18 for inputs and I like it


Sweet! Thanks for the heads up!
Without going too OT - Im recording a stereo out of my modular (at most I record 4 outs, very tops). Im thinking it will open a LOT of possibilities taking 8, 12, 16 outs (from the individual modules) straight into my DAW... it will also allow remixing! w00!

thumbs up
Rupert the not so great
mckenic wrote:
Some questions -

In your example are you monitoring through Live or from your desk?
What interface are you using to get sound in/out of Live?
What are the Audio Engine settings in Live set to (16/24/32bit 44.1k/96k etc).
What version of Live are you using?

Are you rendering the audio and thats when there is a difference or is it a difference between what your hearing and whats played back inside Live BEFORE you render it out?

Whats your interface settings, sample rate and bit depth?

There used to be a lot of talk about Abletons render engine but these days it seems like its a moot point when everything is equal.

Ive been using Live since 2 or 3 (could even be 1, its been donkeys years) and dont notice anything like you mentioned - I do notice a difference when using my MBox 2, Line 6 UX2 or Ultralite mk1 interfaces... looking at an X-Air18 for more inputs and Midas pres for hopefully a little bump in sound quality along with the input/output increase...



Hi, thanks for the reply.

The recorded audio is being sent from my Ableton to playback through Midas F16 FW, it uses firewire so no external interface us needed. Im using 16 bit, 44.1khz and using Live 9 suite. It seems to happen before the audio is rendered off, even still after its rendered off it's still the same quality rubbish.

A good example of how it sounds is - It's ALMOST as bad as streaming a football match where the commentators sound muffled.

thanks smile
Panason
Probably recorded everything too loud.
7-Hydroxy
RhythmDroid wrote:
Also, once you record something in, do you double click the clip to open it in the viewer at the bottom of the screen and TURN WARP OFF?

turn warp off

This appears to be the same situation with Elektron Octatrack...if timestretching it enabled, all sorts of weird compression and processing might be taking place even when the pitch and speed are unmodified...

I could be wrong... maybe I'm just superstitious


Hi,
can someone confirm this? I was asking this myself and made a few tests, but came to the conclusion that it doesn´t have an effect as long as the pitch is default.
mckenic
Rupert the not so great wrote:

A good example of how it sounds is - It's ALMOST as bad as streaming a football match where the commentators sound muffled.


Oh Jazus! You dont want THAT sound any more than is absolutely necessary!
Is this a new thing or has it always been like this for you?

Im going to try attach a zip of a Test session here, you might try it out?
Its just an empty bar, then a few guitar chords. The 2nd part clips slightly and there is a thunk where I stopped the recording... how does it sound on your system?

Im sure we can get to the bottom of this.
Rupert the not so great
mckenic wrote:
Rupert the not so great wrote:

A good example of how it sounds is - It's ALMOST as bad as streaming a football match where the commentators sound muffled.


Oh Jazus! You dont want THAT sound any more than is absolutely necessary!
Is this a new thing or has it always been like this for you?

Im going to try attach a zip of a Test session here, you might try it out?
Its just an empty bar, then a few guitar chords. The 2nd part clips slightly and there is a thunk where I stopped the recording... how does it sound on your system?

Im sure we can get to the bottom of this.



Hi, thanks for this. Appreciate it.

It's pretty much always been a thing for me. Im always rooting for 'perfection' within my audio and everything else so when I hear something sounds so good before I record it in for it then too then sound 'dull' after I record it in really gets on my nerves.. understandably so Im guessing, though.


That clip sounds fine apart from a few things im picking up on and the few things that you mentioned.. theres a certain ground loop sounding lurking in the background. Tried it through output on laptop as well just to make sure it wasn't my desk and it's still there. Theres a few resonant frequencies i'm picking up on but I guess that's all down to flavour and not sure that's actually part of the test.

Hope this gives you an idea... If not, feel free to ask me more smile

Thanks again,
mckenic
thumbs up

Yes sir! I should have said - it is a VERY quite and dry guitar recorded through my MOTU going into Live and Revalver 3 is used for amp sim - thats then bounced wet to a single audio track... so it sounds like your hearing what I am hearing here with that clip.

Humm hmmm.....

Do you have another recorder? Something like a Zoom handheld or something that you can record the source before it hits Live? Or even could you record your source into Live then save/close that and record the same thing into something like Audacity? Then you could at least rule in/out Live and or your interface...
Rupert the not so great
No other recorder apart from my other desk which is a Soundcraft 12MTK but it's far worse on that. The conversion seemed to get better with the Midas which is what I hoped but it's just not the same as when im having a jam and record it in two seconds later ya know!

I guess I could try the audacity thing. I'll do it when home from work tomorrow and the little one isn't sleeping smile

I wonder.. hmmm..... Do you think giving my music to a mastering engineer will change much? And by that I mean - Will the clarity of my sounds re-appear to how they were before I recorded them in or is it pretty much what I send him/her is what I get back? Something i've always wondered... Maybe I'm over thinking it.. I dunno Dead Banana
authorless
Rupert the not so great wrote:
No other recorder apart from my other desk which is a Soundcraft 12MTK but it's far worse on that. The conversion seemed to get better with the Midas which is what I hoped but it's just not the same as when im having a jam and record it in two seconds later ya know!

I guess I could try the audacity thing. I'll do it when home from work tomorrow and the little one isn't sleeping smile

I wonder.. hmmm..... Do you think giving my music to a mastering engineer will change much? And by that I mean - Will the clarity of my sounds re-appear to how they were before I recorded them in or is it pretty much what I send him/her is what I get back? Something i've always wondered... Maybe I'm over thinking it.. I dunno Dead Banana


A mastering engineer can't put back what isn't there.
Rupert the not so great
I did think that but always worth asking to clear things up.
mckenic
Hey mate!

As authorless said no restoring what hasnt been captured.
In my experience when I gave stuff to a Mastering Engineer he made things that had been recorded months (and in one case years) apart, on different equipment sound the same. My thought is he made 12 different tunes into an album, all polished and sounding like they belonged together.

It was final touches and brush strokes, not major surgery.

I could be very wrong here but my thinking with the Audacity thing is to rule out a settings mismatch in Live. If Audacity sounds better - there is something going on with recording into Live... if it sounds the same there is something wrong with the recordings going into your interface (seems doubtful its the interface but lets try!)...

Here is another thing... the Midas F16 FW is 24bit right? If you change your interface and Record/Warp/Launch settings in Live to 24bit do things improve?



Not just in the Audio tab - but also in the Preferences tab:
Rupert the not so great
Hi:)

Cool, that's interesting to know about a mastering engineer. Thanks for that.


Just checked my settings on Ableton and they're all the same as yours apart from mines is at 24bit instead of 16. Hmm... my mind is boggled. has been for ages now lol.
Soy Sos
I hire a kid(27) who's a good studio tech every few months to do maintainence, repairs, cleaning and trouble shooting. He's good at a bunch of stuff like soldering and organization, plus it's great to have a second set of ears around. It makes a huge difference for me and it's not expensive ($20 and hour). I run a medium sized commercial studio and it's totally worth it to spend the money. You must know someone who can come in and take a look. If not, call some commercial studios and ask if they have a tech for hire.
WisdomWriter
mckenic wrote:
Some questions -

In your example are you monitoring through Live or from your desk?
What interface are you using to get sound in/out of Live?
What are the Audio Engine settings in Live set to (16/24/32bit 44.1k/96k etc).
What version of Live are you using?

Are you rendering the audio and thats when there is a difference or is it a difference between what your hearing and whats played back inside Live BEFORE you render it out?

Whats your interface settings, sample rate and bit depth?

There used to be a lot of talk about Abletons render engine but these days it seems like its a moot point when everything is equal.


Agreed to these questions here ^. i also record into ableton and do not find any real difference. the only thing i have to be aware of is CPU and sample rate. you can always close anyting not being used, boost the sample rate for recording. then bring the SR back down so as not to overdrive your CPU.
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