nopattern wrote:i have mixed feelings on this which are very much divided between subjective perception and objective knowledge gathered through testing. i have some rather interesting results i'll share after i get on with the subjective aspect.
subjectively, i have always had issues finalizing my music in live, most notably so in the very low end of the spectrum. i make a sort of dub tech-house/big room hybrid type of sound where the sub bass does most of the musical talking in many of my productions. i'm not sure someone recording an acoustic guitar into live and judging the "sound quality" off that would notice such a thing and i wonder how skewed the subjective perception is of live based on the type of music people make, even with dither there are certain types more appropriate for different types of music. For instance one of my primary tools is the elektron machinedrum which some people swear sound like cold brittle crap and digital drum machine X sounds so much warmer, but for the type of music i do those sounds sit well in my mixes and sound anything but cold, it's all in the context. so people making music that is more dependent on specific frequencies could have a totally different opinion of lives sound. Sure if you put the same audio files in it's going to be the same, i've tested it myself. especially if it's your own recordings but that doesn't mean you can get to the same place after processing, virtual synthesis, etc... the best results i ever got out of live alone were from recording with no delay compensation and manually zooming in on the files and lining them up in another clean session.
I did an interesting test recently, not sure how relevant it is to this discussion but i will share... I read recently that doing a digital loopback recording should be identical to a rendered file. So I did this and after lining the files up to the sample got a cancellation of about -167... Here's where it gets interesting though, i took an eq3 and tweaked the sound then copied the same eq to the other channel. The files were now only cancelling to about -115 which is above the noise floor of 24-bit as i'm sure you all know. Anyone geekier than myself is welcome to give an explanation. I amplified this signal and it was horrible noise, removing the eq's resulted in a difference of 50db on the "same" signal with exact same settings per channel
eq3 sucks, try it again with eq8 and report back please. I did a lot of similar tests. while there are strange things in daws and ableton, this -160db difference doesn't really matter imho. one sample offset for example produces a much much more noticeable difference.