February 14, 2023 at 12:49 pm #4899Alex BalaclavaParticipant
Hi there everybody,
There’s an issue that’s sort of driving me crazy and I found little to no information online regarding it. I’m talking about those project settings that affect the sound of the mix or master, sometimes dramatically, and that can be changed within a range of possibilities.
I’m not speaking about dithering, noise, bit depth etc. (although all of that can sort of interact). I’m referring to the settings affecting the playback and render modes, the resample mode, the (default) pitch mode, the pitch shifter parameter and the strecht marker mode (not sure if there could be some others).
I use Reaper, and some time ago I used Pro-Tools and Sonar, and I didn’t get to noodle around these things but I’m sure all DAWs have these settings (albeit I’m not sure if all of them feature the same ones, or can be adjusted or set in different ways). I record, mix, master and render at 24-bit, 48 kHz .
Needless to say, I’m a budding engineer, a beginner; been working really hard for the past year and I’m starting to be happy with my mixes and masters, but still some things such as these fool me and overwhelm me somehow. Last year I got deeper into these settings, but all the possible combinations seem endless and I’m still not always sure wich ones to use or not in every occasion.
Of course, in the end it’s all down to a pair of good ears listening closely and analytically, but I’m curious about how you guys deal with this, if you have favorite settings (different ones for different kinds of tracks, I guess), whether they are to be set from the start or rather along the mixing or mastering process, if there is an alternative way to change them (I do so on the Project Settings and Render Windows), or even if there is a plugin to help you manage all of this.
I guess there is no hard and fast rule, maybe even no rule of thumb, just getting to know and address all the different possibilities and results, so in the end it’s a bit like using another plugin, or dithering, but like I said it confuses me because of the neverending possibilities and nuances.
On the other hand I find it all a bit stiff and limitative: I mean, sometimes I’d like to adjust some parameters or get something in between two modes but it’s just not possible, the way it appears on Reaper most of it is just A, B or C, or more, but not too malleable. Also, I wonder if they can be set to a 100% flat mode, which I’m not sure is possible.
The thing is I sometimes end up with 10 versions of a track with different settings each, to check on different systems, which is a long process and one that most times leads to ear fatigue, plus it’s boring to be scrolling through files with the same name but endings such as 512x2_RB_C-P-HQ-S_TRANSIENT_DN or 768-512_PRO_Norm-HiF_NOPRECHO_NODN.
Some of these settings work preserving (or not) formants, or specific ranges of formants, mid-side processing and independent phase, while there are several options on the Playback, Render and Resample modes that range from cold flat to rowdy & resonant, with some combinations making dithering and noise shaping essential while it becomes unnecessary for others imho; other settings deal with the transients, detector, pitch mode, window, and some others make use of balance, tonal and transient optimisation or no pre-echo reduction on the project/rendered track.
I’d like to share some specific observations of mine regarding each of these settings but I don’t want to go on too long now so I guess I’ll be sharing mine along yours. Yeah I know, this is only the icing on the cake, but choosing the wrong settings is like pouring salt and pepper on a chocolate gateau!
Thanks in advance.
February 14, 2023 at 6:25 pm #4904Bob KatzKeymaster
You seem to have done a lot of hard work trying to find settings for repitch and time shift.
The guy who has developed Reaper (momentarily forget his name) may have a forum where you can discuss your reactions in detail. I would suggest you check with the Reaper forum. Since I don’t use Reaper (at least not much) I can’t relate to any of your screenshots, really. I do suggest that any Reaper users here reply to the Reaper items you mention. I doubt that someone who uses a different DAW will have a relevant reaction to your post. Even the most minute difference in a repitch algorithm could invalidate any comparisons to a different DAW.
Hope this helps,
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