Mastering hardware

Generel lydteknik og hardware, bl.a. mikrofoner, monitors, hardware synths og effekter.
franco143
Gearslæber
Gearslæber
Indlæg: 32
Sted: Copenhagen

Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 30. okt 2018, 11:33

Hi, I'm starting out in the world of mastering. I'm completely in the box at the moment. A question for all the seasoned mastering professionals - If you were also working in the box and looking to move to hardware mastering equipment, what would you buy for your first piece of gear?
Thanks,
Ross
Brugeravatar
Holger
Audio Alchemist
Audio Alchemist
Indlæg: 33067
Sted: Fyn

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 30. okt 2018, 11:59

In order of importance:

1. Good speakers + good monitor controller (Imperium)
2. Acoustics
3. A good AD/DA converter, but don't go overboard with the spending here. Lynx HiLo, RME ADI-2 Pro will do fine.

Then if you want to add some analog processing I'd go for three types of units first: a good all-round equalizer like the Prism Sound Maselec Master Series MEA-2, a good all-round compressor like the FCS P3S Mastering Edition or P4S compressor, and a tube enhancer like the Black Box Analog Design HG-2.

You'll need a high quality patching device for that. You cannot use a regular patchbay as they'll quickly deteriorate and introduce noise and crackles. Been there, done that. I recommend the Dangerous Liaison.

Later you can add a nice shelving EQ, more and different compressors and equalizers, etc.

It makes no sense bringing in analog gear before you have points 1 - 3 in place first. You can do great mastering completely ITB if you know what you're doing. But without good speakers, acoustics and playback you're not going anywhere on the mastering scene.

I could probably live up to 90% or more of my potential without any analog gear, simply replacing all my analog gear with similar plug-ins. Most plug-ins are of very high quality today, employing high alias reducing internal upsampling.

The hardest part is finding gear that offers the same functions, such as the awesome true RMS function in the P3S compressor or dynamic color option in the Dave Hill Titans, the variable auto-release of the STC-8/M or the resonant shape of the low shelf in the EQ-200. The nice and rounded top end in the HG-2 tube enhancer is a bit off in the plug-in version, but otherwise it's fairly close in terms of harmonics.

Fortunately the TDR Kotelnikov GE has really changed things lately with "insane" oversampling of the internal side-chain, controllable non-linear release, multiple release stages, frequency dependent ratio, etc. So compression is getting closer and closer.

Analog gear is a combination of workflow (knobs over graphics/mouse) and subtle details. Nothing major if you know what you're doing ITB, but enough of difference to justify it if you have the dough and space. And something many clients prefer, whether it's relevant or not.

For an ITB setup I would recommend:

· Bifrost Audio Mastering High Pass Filter (I can send you an AU version)
· Sonalksis StereoTools
· FabFilter Pro-Q 2 equalizer
· FabFilter Pro-MB multiband/dynamic EQ
· Plugin Alliance Black Box Analog Design HG-2 tube saturator
· TDR Kotelnikov GE compressor
· Bifrost Audio Mastering Soft Clipper (not publicly available, yet at least)
· Softube Weiss MM-1 Maximizer
· Fabfilter Pro-L 2 limiter

That'll get you a long ways.
franco143
Gearslæber
Gearslæber
Indlæg: 32
Sted: Copenhagen

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 31. okt 2018, 12:47

Hello Holger,

This is gold dust information. Thank you.

Agreed, I am sorting the first three points at moment.

I have a Prism Lyra 1. I think this will be good to begin with going on Prism's reputation and presence in mastering studios. Obviously its not the Dream AD/DA's. Do you think the Lyra 1 is ok to begin with?
I also have Barefoot Footprints. But I can't get to grips with them and so as mentioned will sell and invest in some second hand PMC. I'm off to Lydbutikken in a minute to check out some PMC and Harbeth monitors.

I will eventually move to hardware partly to get away from being in the box, which is how i've always worked. I like what I hear and feel through the mastering hardware gear i've experienced in mastering studios. I think it will have a positive effect on how i work and introduce a new way of listening. And yes, flashy looking gear and a coffee machine seem to impress some clients as much as whats really important. But hey, secretly i'd like to be able to offer these things if it means a lovely experience for the client.

Its really good to know that the Plugins are up to the job within mastering. Right now i'm solely getting my head around the FF Pro L2 and Q2. I will research the other plugins. And yes, I would love to get hold of your Bifrost plugin. Thanks.

I already have the Dangerous BAX EQ, Brainworx bx_digital V2 and the Elysia Mpressor in plugin form. Are any of these up to the standard for mastering in the box? I've read good reviews about the BAX plugin.

Okay Holgar. Thank you again. Very much appreciated. I'll be firing more questions onto the forum soon. Plenty to be getting on with in the meantime.

Have a great day.
Brugeravatar
Holger
Audio Alchemist
Audio Alchemist
Indlæg: 33067
Sted: Fyn

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 31. okt 2018, 14:14

franco143 skrev:I have a Prism Lyra 1. I think this will be good to begin with going on Prism's reputation and presence in mastering studios. Obviously its not the Dream AD/DA's. Do you think the Lyra 1 is ok to begin with?

Yes, I'm sure.

I also have Barefoot Footprints. But I can't get to grips with them and so as mentioned will sell and invest in some second hand PMC. I'm off to Lydbutikken in a minute to check out some PMC and Harbeth monitors.

Barefoots are very room-sensitive in my experience. I've heard them sound great, but that's the MM27.

I already have the Dangerous BAX EQ, Brainworx bx_digital V2 and the Elysia Mpressor in plugin form. Are any of these up to the standard for mastering in the box? I've read good reviews about the BAX plugin.

Yup.
franco143
Gearslæber
Gearslæber
Indlæg: 32
Sted: Copenhagen

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 31. okt 2018, 18:19

Splendid. Thanks.
Brugeravatar
Manual
Røvballemusiker
Røvballemusiker
Indlæg: 87

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 4. nov 2018, 11:36

Jeg har overvejet en Elysia xfilter til min mastering kæde: https://www.thomann.de/dk/elysia_xfilte ... arch_prv_5

Nogen der har erfaring med den?

Jeg har også overvejet en Tk Audio Tklizer, da jeg har BC2-ME som min primære mastering comp og har været meget glad for den. https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail ... -s-circuit
Brugeravatar
Joachip
Forum Superstar
Forum Superstar
Indlæg: 1468
Sted: Vesterbro

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 4. nov 2018, 11:41

Jeg hørte den demonstreret til Superbooth i 2016, og synes det lød som om den ku' nogen næsten helt exciter-agtige ting, hvilket er interessant. Men om det virkerligt holder i praksis er ret svært at sige, når man kun står og roder med noget i 10 minutter til en larmende messe på lidt for små højttalere.
Brugeravatar
Holger
Audio Alchemist
Audio Alchemist
Indlæg: 33067
Sted: Fyn

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 4. nov 2018, 13:18

Synes ikke helt den ser velegnet ud til mastering generelt. Ligner en lidt for one-trick agtig ting, men det kan jo være fedt nogle gange. Især hvis du ikke har noget andet farvelade.

Jeg vil nok købe noget mere all-round/versatilt i begyndelsen og så udvide med de mere finurlige ting.
franco143
Gearslæber
Gearslæber
Indlæg: 32
Sted: Copenhagen

Re: Mastering Automation or not

Indlæg Skrevet: 5. nov 2018, 13:22

Hi,
What do you do when a track needs different eqing/treatment in different sections of the track and you can't do it on the fly with hardware gear? Do you automate or do you print each section separately then put it together in Sadie? And why do mastering engineers use Sadie or Sequoia? Is it okay to use Pro Tools or Logic? Thanks.
Brugeravatar
Holger
Audio Alchemist
Audio Alchemist
Indlæg: 33067
Sted: Fyn

Re: Mastering Automation or not

Indlæg Skrevet: 5. nov 2018, 13:31

franco143 skrev:Hi,
What do you do when a track needs different eqing/treatment in different sections of the track and you can't do it on the fly with hardware gear? Do you automate or do you print each section separately then put it together in Sadie?

Yes, that's one option. More likely: digital EQ, either on cut up sections/tracks or automated.

And why do mastering engineers use Sadie or Sequoia? Is it okay to use Pro Tools or Logic? Thanks.

Sequoia, WaveLab and certainly Logic Pro X and Pro Tools can be used for or as part of a mastering setup.

PT and Logic doesn't have DDP capabilities so you need to use a separat program like DDP Creator for that. And if you want to edit in CD frames in a regular DAW you need to do that with a tempo of 281,25 BPM and cut in divisions.
Brugeravatar
Manual
Røvballemusiker
Røvballemusiker
Indlæg: 87

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 5. dec 2018, 10:15

Holger skrev:Synes ikke helt den ser velegnet ud til mastering generelt. Ligner en lidt for one-trick agtig ting, men det kan jo være fedt nogle gange. Især hvis du ikke har noget andet farvelade.

Jeg vil nok købe noget mere all-round/versatilt i begyndelsen og så udvide med de mere finurlige ting.


Jeg synes det er svært at finde en god hardware mastering EQ - til fornuftige penge. Jeg har det også sådan lidt at hvis jeg skal investere mange penge i et stykke hardware vil jeg egentlig gerne have noget "mojo" - jeg har plugins der lyder transparent. Men der er faktisk ikke så meget at vælge imellem hvis vi taler maks. 15.000,- (som omtrent er mit budget)

Jeg har kigget på TK Audio's TK-Lizer: https://www.cyberfarm.dk/tk-audio-tk-lizer/

Prismæssigt ligger den et godt sted, og den kan lave M/S hvilket er et stort plus i min bog. Og jeg har deres mastering compressor som jeg er super glad for. Desværre har den kun tre bånd, ideelt set vil jeg gerne have fire. Er der andet i samme prisleje jeg bør overveje?
Brugeravatar
Gyraf
Professor i DIY
Professor i DIY
Indlæg: 620
Sted: Aarhus (Lyd-) Havn

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 5. dec 2018, 14:21

Gustav "pcbgrinder" har en EQ/Compressor på vej - kan ikke sige om den kommer til at passe til dig, men dén har helt klart "mojo".

Hans PQ2 er heller ikke så dårlig, hvis du alligevel kigger i den retning...

Jakob E.
Brugeravatar
Holger
Audio Alchemist
Audio Alchemist
Indlæg: 33067
Sted: Fyn

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 5. dec 2018, 15:30

Kan man ikke næsten ramme de 15k (+moms dog) for en G14? Så er der i hvert fald mojo for alle pengene.

Der er både mulighed for at presse den lidt for overtoner/trafo-lyd og masser af parametriske bånd.

Så kan du gemme shelving og cuts til en dedikeret (M/S) eq, evt. digitalt...
Brugeravatar
Gyraf
Professor i DIY
Professor i DIY
Indlæg: 620
Sted: Aarhus (Lyd-) Havn

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 5. dec 2018, 17:11

Jo, hvis man finder den brugt, er det tæt på. Men det er ikke så ofte der er nogen der skiller sig af med dem...

Jakob E.
Brugeravatar
Holger
Audio Alchemist
Audio Alchemist
Indlæg: 33067
Sted: Fyn

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 5. dec 2018, 20:36

Hvad er det den koster inkl. mormor i DK nu om dage?
Brugeravatar
Gyraf
Professor i DIY
Professor i DIY
Indlæg: 620
Sted: Aarhus (Lyd-) Havn

Re: Mastering hardware

Indlæg Skrevet: 6. dec 2018, 13:57

Den er alligevel fem-og-tyve-et-halvt kilo - så lidt uden for kategorien hér i denne tråd..

Jakob E.

Tilbage til "Andet Udstyr & Lydteknik"

Hvem er online

Brugere der læser dette forum: Ingen og 1 gæst