Hard or soft.. which are you ?

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
Rabalder
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Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2009 10:03 am
Location: Norway

Re: Hard or soft.. which are you ?

Post by Rabalder » Mon Mar 26, 2012 1:04 pm

Hardware: Analog, digital or virtual?

anybody human
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Re: Hard or soft.. which are you ?

Post by anybody human » Mon Mar 26, 2012 1:42 pm

Machinesworking wrote:
The Carpet Cleaner wrote:I just heard a real ssl. Compressor. Wow it's much better than my waves ssl emulation
Yeah somethings are really hard to do in software. All tube emulations come to mind, I'll use them, but not a single one sounds like real tube distortion when compared side to side. Sure, certain settings on a tube distortion can be emulated, but the whole device?.. so far no one has got it down.
This isn't a criticism of software, which is amazing these days. Having this or that piece of gear isn't going to make or break your sound.

A friend has these 2 boutique hardware compressors, Shadow Hills Dual Vandergraph & Mono Optograph. http://www.vintageking.com/Shadow-Hills-Industries

Getting to play around with them was a truly mind blowing-ly fun experience. I really couldn't believe it, it was jaw on the floor stuff. I still love my Cytomic's The Glue for instance, and this same friend swears by Waves SSL bundle. I use soft synths & they sound great. Also use a DSI Tetra and it's more fun both tactile & character wise but they both do a job. Compressors, preamps, saturation - there software is maybe a little further off. I classify nice gear, especially hardware, as "you can't f it up". It's idiot proof, that's what I like about it. Wait... that says something about me :wink:

Another friend asked me about my guitar sound and I said "Moog Analog delay pedal". Then again Soundtoys Echoboy makes about any guitar sound good too. So, it's nice to have the "best of both worlds" thing going if possible, but it's not going to make the difference to the listener. As musicians we love our tools/toys though. It makes it fun and inspiring for us, and if the listener can hear that spark, that's what matters.

JuanSOLO
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Location: Shreveport LA, sometimes Dallas/Ft Worth TX

Re: Hard or soft.. which are you ?

Post by JuanSOLO » Mon Mar 26, 2012 2:57 pm

taffmonster wrote:...max being the cheaper of the options.
You could substitute "max" with any piece of software here, and the price is less but many times the sound quality is too, at least in comparison to what it's emulating. However software is dynamic and flexible with routing, midi possibilities, modulation, controllers, copy/paste, etc. But hardware offers a tactile layout that can be hands on and felt more like and instrument.

I was thinking how most people spend A LOT of time behind a computer, and most of those people dont know much about it beyond email and itunes, and whatever software the use all day at work.
I cant help but notice the reaction to people who make music on hardware get some kind of different respect, and I feel like it might be related to people thinking, "Well I can do that" because they are on computers all day and it seems similar.
So the audience may not hear a difference, but when they see someone making music on hardware these days, they think that it's really different, even if your still just twisting knobs, you're perceived as more of a musician.

I also see it like this.
There is a fantastic Space Echo emulation in the Reaktor UL. I love it, it sounds like you would expect. I also have a thousand other things that came with Reaktor.
But if I had a REAL Space Echo, where I can touch the knobs and experience it, I would never open that stupid Reaktor emulation ever again.

I love software, and I will continue to use it until I can replace it with hardware.

deva
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Re: Hard or soft.. which are you ?

Post by deva » Mon Mar 26, 2012 5:01 pm

JuanSOLO wrote:But hardware offers a tactile layout that can be hands on and felt more like and instrument.
Sometimes... Plenty of hardware synths have many layers of cryptic menus to edit sounds and are far less fluid and intuitive to edit than most soft synths.

djadonis206
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Location: Seattle, WA.

Re: Hard or soft.. which are you ?

Post by djadonis206 » Mon Mar 26, 2012 6:17 pm

djadonis206 wrote:I have a Slim Phatty, Nord Lead 2x, and just picked up a used DSI Mopho desktop. I love the analog sound, but for more modern sounds I use Massive and Sylenth
A little bit of both.

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trevox
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Re: Hard or soft.. which are you ?

Post by trevox » Mon Mar 26, 2012 11:32 pm

Synth-wise, I pretty much use hardware only at the moment. I may use soft synths when sketching things down if not in the studio, but rarely if ever end up using those sounds any more. I have enough decent synths which in my opinion sound better than their equivalent plugin emulators - they either have more scope or just seem to always fit better into whatever I am writing. I use software samplers for real drum and piano, though as I am not writing music that suits those instruments at the moment, I rarely find myself using a sampler at all. I have some external effects, but still use a choice few software effects too - mainly EQ/dynamics ones, but some more destructive ones too. Ableton/M4L pretty much serve as a sequencer/MIDI generator these days with very little audio going on.

icedsushi
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Re: Hard or soft.. which are you ?

Post by icedsushi » Tue Mar 27, 2012 1:45 am

Ermm, this is the Ableton forum. Pretty much nobody (here at least) is going to be using all hardware.

Someone who uses all software is going to be a rarity as well, but you might find a person here & there who doesn't even have one piece of hardware other than midi controllers.

Muzik 4 Machines
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Re: Hard or soft.. which are you ?

Post by Muzik 4 Machines » Tue Mar 27, 2012 1:57 am

icedsushi wrote:Ermm, this is the Ableton forum. Pretty much nobody (here at least) is going to be using all hardware.

Someone who uses all software is going to be a rarity as well, but you might find a person here & there who doesn't even have one piece of hardware other than midi controllers.
youd be surprised, i used exclusively hardware live for 10 years and used ableton in studio for almost as long, i just started integrating live in my all hardware setup last fall

rydn
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Re: Hard or soft.. which are you ?

Post by rydn » Tue Mar 27, 2012 4:08 am

At the moment, I'm doing all hardware and just processing in Ableton. I'm using a Monomachine for sequencing and as a synth, a Machinedrum and my latest edition the Waldorf XT. I've also got a budding Eurorack modular that isn't getting a lot of use yet.

Soon though, I'm hoping to run hard and software synths (Diva, Zebra) by side with the hardware. Soon is when the Expert Sleepers ES-5 comes out to sync everything up.

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