FFS. It's really not happening. Computers sound too clean?

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
logic_user99
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FFS. It's really not happening. Computers sound too clean?

Post by logic_user99 » Mon Apr 21, 2008 9:21 pm

So I'm really, really struggling to achieve the sounds that I want. (I'm trying to get into making trip-hop tunes, as I play electronic styles on the drums and want to build a band around it!)

I listen to a lot of Portishead et al, and am trying to create sounds like theirs; over-compressed drums, grainy guitars, dirty samples. It's just not happening, and I feel that it's the downfall of the computer artist which is impeeding me.

The computer sounds too clean. I have not found any way to recreate those dirty, vinyl-esque sounds using a computer. I use pretty standard methods for building beats, and even after using dirty old sampled breaks (LOL) I still don't get what I'm after; no amount of tweaking the 'Vinyl Distortion' plugin, or caressing an EQ8 achieves me 'that' sound.

Am I just shite at production, or is there something that I'm missing? I know that a computer is never going to sound like a 2" tape machine, but there's got to be something that'll get it somewhere close!

Halp? (also, does anyone want to collaborate on anything trip-hop-based? working on my own is proving to be a bit of a bitch...)
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mathew
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Post by mathew » Mon Apr 21, 2008 9:29 pm

sometimes i will take a beat and record it onto a tape deck, resample it and play with noise reduction a bit. invest in a shitty guitar speaker and mic, and run the drums through it. its called lofi because its lofi
accepting the problem will only make it go away.
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Moody
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Post by Moody » Mon Apr 21, 2008 9:34 pm

Since you mentioned playing drums... do just that. Try running your pres hot. Make your own samples this way. Experiment!

Try this routine.... Record a basic drum pattern from your kit. Experiment with your pre-amps and then set that stuff into a loop. Now with your drums setup some effects. Layer those over the loop you have going. Chop it up and rearrage until your heart is content. Then have a couple of buddies come by with their dusty old guitar and bass amps and play some riffs. Enjoy the madness!
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sweetjesus
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Post by sweetjesus » Mon Apr 21, 2008 9:38 pm

get some shitty old records

sample crackles hiss and pops and overlay them on ur stuff

piZMo
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Re: FFS. It's really not happening. Computers sound too clea

Post by piZMo » Mon Apr 21, 2008 10:57 pm

logic_user99 wrote:So I'm really, really struggling to achieve the sounds that I want. (I'm trying to get into making trip-hop tunes, as I play electronic styles on the drums and want to build a band around it!)

I listen to a lot of Portishead et al, and am trying to create sounds like theirs; over-compressed drums, grainy guitars, dirty samples. It's just not happening, and I feel that it's the downfall of the computer artist which is impeeding me.

The computer sounds too clean. I have not found any way to recreate those dirty, vinyl-esque sounds using a computer. I use pretty standard methods for building beats, and even after using dirty old sampled breaks (LOL) I still don't get what I'm after; no amount of tweaking the 'Vinyl Distortion' plugin, or caressing an EQ8 achieves me 'that' sound.

Am I just shite at production, or is there something that I'm missing? I know that a computer is never going to sound like a 2" tape machine, but there's got to be something that'll get it somewhere close!

Halp? (also, does anyone want to collaborate on anything trip-hop-based? working on my own is proving to be a bit of a bitch...)
I attended a production masterclass at uni once (long time ago) taught by a guy who had worked with portishead. he said the way they got around copyright and still have the old dusty sounding samples was to record session musicains, get it pressed to vinyl, then put the vinyl on the floor stand, on it scuff it up a bit and then resample it. 8O
Last edited by piZMo on Tue Apr 22, 2008 1:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

condra
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Post by condra » Mon Apr 21, 2008 11:48 pm

Sample.

forge
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Post by forge » Tue Apr 22, 2008 12:35 am

also, just try recording beats from the speaker through a mic - even a laptop in built mic

and stick at it - Rome wasn't built in a day - people can spend years on an album

roach808
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Post by roach808 » Tue Apr 22, 2008 3:29 am

forge wrote:also, just try recording beats from the speaker through a mic - even a laptop in built mic

and stick at it - Rome wasn't built in a day - people can spend years on an album
yeah, re-miking can do worlds of good to add some character for sounds. I used to have this old turntable with a rather large built in speaker. It also had a 1/4 input, so i used to run samples thru it, mic it up, then record it back into live and drop it into impulse. just a thought im sure with some ebay action you could find some interesting lo-fi sound sources.
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knotkranky
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Post by knotkranky » Tue Apr 22, 2008 3:59 am

@logic



nope. it's all you dude. If Portishead used a computer where they used a 2" machine, they wouldn't have sold less records cuz of it.

It is muuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuch harder to make a record on a 2" machine. And harder usually translates into poopier.

Your problem may be too many options. That's the one and only problem with computers.

a1studmuffin
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Post by a1studmuffin » Tue Apr 22, 2008 5:48 am

Think of it this way - better to have a completely clean signal path to go through rather than being forced into a filthy gritty one. You can always add the filth + grit later - how you do it is up to you.
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Re: FFS. It's really not happening. Computers sound too clea

Post by Machinate » Tue Apr 22, 2008 7:44 am

logic_user99 wrote:Am I just shite at production, or is there something that I'm missing? I know that a computer is never going to sound like a 2" tape machine, but there's got to be something that'll get it somewhere close!
I think you're just looking at it in the wrong way - instead of looking at computers vs. tape (booh!) just think more in terms of how you're procuring your sounds. If your source material is all digital and clean you'll have a lot harder time making things gritty in the right way.
logic_user99 wrote:Halp? (also, does anyone want to collaborate on anything trip-hop-based? working on my own is proving to be a bit of a bitch...)
hit me up, I'd love to do trip-hop type stuff again.
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snakedogman
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Post by snakedogman » Tue Apr 22, 2008 7:59 am

Nothing stopping you from running some sounds out of the computer and trough some dirty fx pedals and other assorted hardware.
Get yourself a Sherman filterbank or something. Instant dirt :)
Some kind of tape machine would probably also help.

Bagle
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Post by Bagle » Tue Apr 22, 2008 8:15 am

ive tried to get lofi dirty samples before, and it only, only works by getting, well lofi.

recording out onto tape, and back in is a good idea,
or out to tape, play back through an old stereo if you can and mic that bad boy up.

if you really dont wanna dirty up your samples and keep em clean, well
bit reduction, and drastic eq is the only way i think youll get the sound.

easier to experiment and have fun then hours looking at a screen exhausting your mind and ears
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logic_user99
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Post by logic_user99 » Tue Apr 22, 2008 8:32 am

Thanks for the replies, guys. I guess there's more (or, infact, less) to getting lo-fi than I originally thought.

It's going to mean a trip to eBay tonight; some kind of reel-to-reel field recorder may saite my appetite. At least that way I can go to a drum-space and roll a few loops of my own, giving me some original material to work with.

I've also just spied an S900, but that's going TOO FAR! *chuckle*

Again, the offer stands for a colaboration (Machinate - PM!). I'd love to work with some of you on a track or two. Does anyone sing? :D
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logic_user99
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Post by logic_user99 » Tue Apr 22, 2008 8:33 am

*double post*
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