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 Analog "Fix-it-in-the-mix" Techniques?
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Hotz Offline
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2006 7:08 am    Post subject: Analog "Fix-it-in-the-mix" Techniques? Reply with quote

So, this morning, I've been reading "The Musician's Guide to ProTools", and especially the parts about how to fix little problems in a session, like aligning bass guitar and kick drum tracks, fixing rushing problems, copying and pasting chords, looping, comping, filling in drop-outs, flying-in parts, etc...


And I was wondering...how the heck do you make these fixes in an analog format? Or are performers just expected to make a perfect take? And/or, what types of techniques are there in analog formats for "fixing it in the mix"?

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2006 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We used a razor blade. cutting tape (was) an art to itself. cutting out certain tracks on a multitrack reel or cutting and pasting together two performances took a lot more effort than it does in a DAW.

as far as lining up bass and kick, you would have to run one into a delay box and then dial in the right ms until things lined up.

"looping" got it's name from analog delay boxes. they were basically just a continous loop of tape inside the box with tapeheads that would record the signal on to the tape, and then a read head that could be moved different distances from the record head to make a delay.

i'm glad i got my chance to cut tape, if only so i can appreciate never having to do it again Smile

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 29, 2006 6:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The analog mix fixer is tracking.
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The Ghost of FM Offline
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2006 7:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Without razorblades, you could also punch in and out replacement parts for flubbed notes and also do some cool pitch effects and tuning fixes with vari-speed but to a large degree, analog does demand to a higher degree that musicians are somewhat capable of performing their parts which is not such a bad thing if you have any desire to be a competent musician?

For those that demand the editing flexibility of digital and the sound quality of analog, one could always track first on analog and then dump it to digital to get the full hamburger helper effect. Many higher end pro studios use this method.

Cheers! Smile

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 27, 2006 7:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cool, thanks everyone (A little delayed, I know...but I'm still grateful!)
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 17, 2008 7:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Everything we do in pro tools has been done already just in a more difficult way on tape. In easier terms pro tools makes everything engineers have done like ten times easier. Like aligning tracks, all you have to do in tools is nudge the track over until it lines up. With tape you need to know how far your mics where and then factor in the speed of sound and dial in a delay that matches up the tracks togehter perfectly. A little bit harder then just hitting the nudge button.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 10:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah but, in analog, the need to nudge would almost never be there in the first place unless the drummer and bass player were just completely off in their playing when they were laying down their parts! Very Happy

The whole nudging deal is more a phenomenon of the digital era, I would think.

Cheers! Smile

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2009 7:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Ghost of FM wrote:
Yeah but, in analog, the need to nudge would almost never be there in the first place unless the drummer and bass player were just completely off in their playing when they were laying down their parts! Very Happy

The whole nudging deal is more a phenomenon of the digital era, I would think.

Cheers! Smile

yeah ...... a LOT of the issues I see mentioned nowadays would simply have not occurred back in the reel-to-reel days. I mean ...... an awful lot of the old classic famous albums were cut in a short amount of time with little editing at all done after the fact.
You WERE expected to accomplish it with musicianship because it wasn't easy to do some of the things we all casually do with digital recording.
I remember long discussions/arguments over some flubbed note .... whether it was acceptable because of either the coolness factor or because you didn't want to have to go back and do the entire thing over.
That's why a lot of older albums have a spontaneity that often gets perfected out of modern recordings. Now it's easy to make everything perfect and more and more young players seem to feel perfect is the only allowable standard while I find perfect to often be sterile and unexciting to my ears.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2009 6:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DAS19 wrote:
Like aligning tracks, all you have to do in tools is nudge the track over until it lines up.


This can be an extremely bad thing to do if you value the feel of the players. Of course if you're dealing with players who have no feel it can make a crappy take useable if you like stuff right on the grid lines.

I try to mix with my ears not my eyes. That can be difficult in DAW land even for an old analog-trained dude like me. The temptation is strong.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 14, 2009 5:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

while tape was more forgiving as far as headroom- musicians really needed to have there shit together- I worked (as intern and later assistant engineer) in a local 24track (Tascam) studio- easily 75% of the recordings we did were mostly live with some doubling and harmonies after the fact- those who over-dubbed start to finish typically had over-produced (IMHO) final products

the razor blade was tedious and we always bounced a full un-editted back-up which added to the cost of the unprepared bands

you didn't get recording time for no $20 -25 an hour back then!

I did a demo for Fantasy and they had us rehearse for 3 days (all...day... long... over and over) before they let us in to the studio... then after all was said and done they wanted to buy 2 songs (outright)plus we could have the reels.... our pride made us say no

in retrospect... should have sold the songs to them...... Laughing

egos..............

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