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 Forum index » Discussion » Composition
Sounds beautiful, record it, play it back, sounds like crap.
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A E J O T Z



Joined: Aug 14, 2011
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 6:55 pm    Post subject: Sounds beautiful, record it, play it back, sounds like crap.
Subject description: sometimes very subtle sonic events don't record well
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I used to have this problem more when I used multi-track tape recorders.

Now I use a digital recorder that has an interface much like a tape recorder.

The problem is that I play and record a part, then play it back. I play another part that meshes and interweaves with the first in sonically magical ways. I'm hypnotized by the interactions of the sounds as I play and record them. But when I play them back, the magic is gone. That subtle synergetic interplay didn't survive the recording process.

It doesn't always happen, of course. But it's very frustrating to think you've captured something wonderful, and when you open the box, it's empty.

Have any of the rest of you experienced this? I'm sure some of you must have, since I've experienced it when using very different instruments and recorders.

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Grumble



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2017 3:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

If this is happening while you listen over speakers (not headphones) it is possible that phase differences you hear do not record the same way and there you will have a difference between the heard and recorded sound
Maybe THIS tells it somewhat more understandable...

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Blue Hell
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

There may be some psychological stuff going on as well ... at least .. sometimes I have this wonderful automatic semi random playing stuff .. but often when I record it .. it just does not work .. doing retake after retake .. the automation seems to know it is being recorded ... or .. my brains work differently on doing an 'official' recording .. no idea .. just an observation.
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DrJustice



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2017 12:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

In the room I currently use for music making there is a difference in the sound depending on where I'm placed while listening. It's the nodes and anti-nodes in the room playing their part I guess. The degree of difference also depend on the sounds themselves (which frequencies hits nodes where in the room).

I wouldn't say that the differences are huge, as in magic-robbing, but that's using my room, my sounds and my ears... yours may be very different.

I'd not rule out the effect that Jan is suggesting, at least to some degree - I know it's real in my case. You know, all hot/tensed/adrenaline-fueled/serotonin-laden/whatever when playing and recording a part, then when I cool down, perception can be a bit different.
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A E J O T Z



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2017 5:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I should have explained it better.

I played the tune and listened to it in the same room with the same speakers and amplifier when recording AND when playing back the recording. So the difference was the result of something that was lost (or added?) going from the original sounds to the recorded sounds.

Even high sample rate digital recording isn't quite the same as the original sound. My BOSS BR-600 records at a sample rate of 44.1kHz. When I play the original recording from the recorder, the cool effect seems more subtle but still present. But when I export to WAV and play that back the effect is gone.

So if you want to hear my cool tune you'll just have to come over to my house.
------
On the other hand, I might be a dumbass.

I just realized/remembered that when I was playing and recording the tune I was facing my keyboard stand, 90 degrees from when I was facing my computer and playing recordings back. My speakers are on either side of my computer.

So if you want to hear my tune properly, just put speakers exactly like mine in a room the same dimensions as mine and turn your head to the right. (You might also need to put two or three cats on the bed for the proper acoustic damping.)

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AEJOTZ is pronounced "A-Jotz"
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DrJustice



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2017 6:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I can't see how modern high resolution AD/DA can make any difference in the magic retention of a recording unless there's something flat out wrong with the system in question. Or at least if the magic disappears when you "limit" things to 100dB dynamic range and 20kHz bandwidth, it must have been extremely minute and/or fragile to begin with (?)

Oh well, as you suggest perhaps recordings should come with a detailed floor plan with materials and furniture specification and a list of necessary ancillaries such as cats and dogs, their exact breed, size and number etc.. Also instructions for glasses on or off, amount of facial hair and other acoustic disturbances Laughing
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Grumble



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 13, 2017 9:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

soo my post about recording with a dummy head wasn't so stupid afterall Rolling Eyes Very Happy
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Blue Hell
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 1:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Heh .. that reminds me on the headphone reversed thingie .. sometimes music sounds different when the headphones are on 'right side left' .. as in backwards .. reversed. Sometimes doing that to hear things better.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 12:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

don't forget that the best music doesn't let itself be recorded. I think we've all been there where you play something
that you think sounds great only to find out you forget to press record or something went wrong with the recording. Wink

see also
Blue Hell wrote:
.. but often when I record it .. it just does not work .. doing retake after retake .. the automation seems to know it is being recorded ...

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A E J O T Z



Joined: Aug 14, 2011
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Location: Griffith, Indiana, USA
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 5:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Grumble wrote:
soo my post about recording with a dummy head wasn't so stupid afterall Rolling Eyes Very Happy


Apparently I already use a dummy head... it's on my shoulders! Razz

_________________
AEJOTZ is pronounced "A-Jotz"
retro-futurism now
electronics = magic
free albums at http://aejotz.bandcamp.com
listen to genre-defying synthetic music at http://sat-5.com
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Grumble



Joined: Nov 23, 2015
Posts: 520
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 8:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Very Happy
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A E J O T Z



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PostPosted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 5:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Blue Hell wrote:
There may be some psychological stuff going on as well ... at least .. sometimes I have this wonderful automatic semi random playing stuff .. but often when I record it .. it just does not work .. doing retake after retake .. the automation seems to know it is being recorded ... or .. my brains work differently on doing an 'official' recording .. no idea .. just an observation.


My mindset always changes the moment I push the "record" button.

It's not that I always choke or tense up, but the focus always changes in some way.

Sometimes I improvise a great musical moment, but duplicating that "accident" deliberately for recording just cannot be quite the same.

_________________
AEJOTZ is pronounced "A-Jotz"
retro-futurism now
electronics = magic
free albums at http://aejotz.bandcamp.com
listen to genre-defying synthetic music at http://sat-5.com
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View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
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