Live 7's Spectral Analyzer

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Live 7's Spectral Analyzer

Post by boddhisattva007 » Thu Jan 03, 2008 4:24 am

I was wondering if anyone could point me in the direction of a great tutorial (or tutorials) to help me get to grips with using Live's new Spectrum Analyzer? The manual is not really helpful in explaining what it's all about and more precisely, how to use it effectivley (especially for different audio sources... bass, kick drum, etc..)
Any help would be greatly appreciated!


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Post by selthym » Fri Jan 04, 2008 8:20 am

Don't you just load it on a channel and it analyses that channels frequncies.

If you put it on the master it will display all tracks frequncies.

If you put it on a send it wil show all tracks that are being sent to it.

Am I right?

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Post by boddhisattva007 » Fri Jan 04, 2008 4:15 pm

Right, I guess I was wondering how to use it more effectivley... in a production sense.

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Post by laird » Fri Jan 04, 2008 4:46 pm

Best thing to do:

load a few songs you like and think sound good into Live and run them through the spectrum analyzer.

Pick a few different genres... one more techno, one more rock are a nice contrast.

See how much bass they have... probably more going on in the left-end than in the upper right end.

Now load up one of your songs... does your track sound duller? COmpare the two spectra and see if your song has less high-end peaks. If so, boost them! Is yours muddier? See if yours has big peaks in the midrange areas. If so, cut 'em! Or maybe you've got a ton of sub-bass peaks that eat your headroom up. but you can't hear them... Cut those! Etc.

You can use the analyzer to identify and tame rogue peaks (my drums lack oomph... ahh there's a huge peak at 600 hz which eats all my headroom on that track.... I'm gonna add an EQ8, type in 600 hz, and bring that down a bit.)

A spectrum analyzer is no substitute for using your ears, but it can speed up the process, and also makes for a good learning tool.

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Post by boddhisattva007 » Fri Jan 04, 2008 5:45 pm

Thanks laird, that's excellent advice. I know I guess it's probably pretty obvious but I didn't think about using it to analyze another producers work and use that as a learning tool. Thanks Much!

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Post by Ruso » Sat Jan 05, 2008 2:22 am

one way I use it is if you have a sound and it's too loud at some point and ends up clipping the whole track, I look at it and try to eq out the loudest frequency provided it's not the critical one to the sound itself... usually a lot of sounds have a TON of extra frequencies that aren't even needed to hear the sound and are extra noise... I like to cut those out too...

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Post by mook@skewer » Sun Jan 06, 2008 4:53 pm

Agreed, it's an excellent tool to assist in 'mastering' your tracks.

Tips I've heard are try to ensure that no frequency rises above 10db, and if any do, find where the extra 'noise' is coming from and turn it down a bit or eq the track.

On a side note, another tip is to use eq to remove bass frequencies on all tracks that dont need. All too often you can have inaudible low frequncies coming together from various pads, leads, etc. which end up muddying the bottom end. Seperate out your kick and bass too, helps make things much clearer and clean.

Sidechaining your kick and bass is also a useful method of clearing out competing frequencies, and of course gives you that pumping sound often heard on dance tracks :) - latest updates now in place
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Post by sonvardy » Wed Jan 09, 2008 2:23 am

What does sidechaining mean?

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Post by Stace » Wed Jan 09, 2008 10:44 am

Have a go at this tutorial Sonvardy it should help, just scroll down to the side chain compression tutorial and off you go!
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Post by e-theory » Thu Jan 10, 2008 1:07 am

I wish you could snapshot a frequency spectrum and overlay the currently active spectrum on top of that ala CoolEdit style - it would make some mixing/mastering tasks a little easier....
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Post by faze » Thu Jan 10, 2008 1:37 am

Stace wrote:Have a go at this tutorial Sonvardy it should help, just scroll down to the side chain compression tutorial and off you go!
Hey thanks for the link. That site looks interesting.

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