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  #1  
Old 03-01-2011, 10:38 AM
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Default How are analog formats doing?

When it comes to listening to music it seems that digital has dominated with the popularity of CDs and MP3s.

Is the analog age collecting dust or are there any more advancements just as there have been in recent years with digital?

I was surprised when I found out a Melbourne community radio station I listen to was playing new tracks from new albums that were released on vinyl.

Now there is this big debate about analog vs digital but I've got the impression (from what I've read on the net) is that analog (being analogously recorded) makes a truer representation of sound waves and has a 'warmer sound' etc. while digital allows for a higher dynamic range (which sadly isn't exploited enough)...their pros and cons go on

...and what about tape? Does anyone still record to tape? (I'm thinking Compact Cassette Tapes - a much more portable analog format).

I had these kind of wonderings and a few weeks ago I ended up picking up and listening to a few old southern-european-folk tracks (on compact cassette tape) that were collecting dust at my grandfather's place.

...and what's next after digital...quantum?
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Old 03-01-2011, 11:56 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Analog(ue) is designed to capture a continuous 'analogue' of the waveform, but because it's recorded in a physical object any flaws that the object contains will become part of the sound, hence vinyl's crackles and pops.
Digital makes certain assumptions about the shape of the wave, so you lose the frequency spectrum above (and below) the range of human hearing, which may have more of an effect on the sound than is popularly realised. The biggest advantage over tape is the lack of any particular noise floor, whereas you need to have a very 'hot' signal going to a tape machine in order that the noise on the tape isn't audible. There's a Buddy Rich solo on here that illustrates that point very well, as when he's playing ppp stuff on the snare, the hum threatens to overwhelm what he's playing.

Nobody uses cassettes any more. Cassettes must be the worst format out there to release music on.
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Old 03-01-2011, 12:36 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Good reply, PeeCu. I think you need a very good system to take advantage of any advantage (exceptionally well cared for) vinyl may have.

I have some old cassettes at home that I mean to take out for a spin and to see how well or badly the magnetism has held. Now if I could work out how to wire the speakers on my cassette player ...
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Old 03-01-2011, 01:43 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

I actually write compositions on casette tape, that use the inherent lack of quality of casettes as part of piece. I'm doing an installation at the moment, for example. I like the tactile sensations of physical media and I enjoy listening to vinyl. Objectively though, the advantages of digital are obvious and I usually listen to digital formats. I enjoy analogue media all the same.
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Old 03-01-2011, 05:56 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Mark Knopfler was still recording to tape in his London studio as of the last album or two.

As for digital vs. analog, it's true that the earliest digital could sound a bit brittle, with some splatter. No, you couldn't hear it on ear buds or computer speakers... I'm talking about listening on more revealing high-end system. Cymbals and horns suffered the worst from this. But as digital recording improved and higher resolutions were possible, the sounds smoothed out and in theory (and based on human hearing) are perfectly realistic.

What analog tape has always done is to introduce its inherent saturation/distortion, and this is where the "warmth" comes from. It's not that it's unrealistic, it's just what we've been used to hearing. Sort of like the transition from film to video, or analog tv to digital & hi-def. There was a 'texture' (read: warmth) that's no longer there. It's not always good or bad, it's just different. Anyway, the analog tape warmth is what made drums sound punchy, bass sound warm, vocals sound present, etc. An old trick to get really punchyh/crunchy drums was to record them at 7.5ips, then copy those tracks to the master reel running at 15 or 30ips and record everything else more cleanly.

How do we get that analog sound now? Two ways. Either record to analog tape then transfer the tracks to digital (which will retain all of the saturation, even though it didn't create it on its own) or, there are plug-ins to restore the analog sound, sort of a pre-mastering process.

I'm trying to think back to the last time I recorded to tape... maybe 2003?

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Old 03-01-2011, 06:18 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

I have noticed vinyl has made a big come back in recent years.

But at the same time, many newer vinyl releases were still recorded to digital, so I'm not sure what the point is.

The line between digital and analog is so blurred now, I'm not sure it makes a huge difference.

I once spoke with the bass player for a major band, and he was telling me how they run the signal though the tape machine, but right back out into Protools. I think I've read a few other bands that have tried similar things.

You can buy a multitude of plug ins for your DAW that will "simulate" analog sound.

But as pointed pointed out, digital recording is so much more advanced now than it was when it came out, that criticism people had the of early digital sound is rather moot by todays's standards.
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Old 03-01-2011, 06:20 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pollyanna View Post

I have some old cassettes at home that I mean to take out for a spin and to see how well or badly the magnetism has held. Now if I could work out how to wire the speakers on my cassette player ...
All my old cassettes got very stretched out from over playing, or melted or such.
I tossed them all out a few years back.
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Old 03-01-2011, 06:27 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

I've recorded onto tape as recently as 2 months ago. Last summer, I recorded a project where the band leader wanted the basic tracks laid down on tape, so I whipped out my 4-track recorder, blew the dust off of it, and mixed to 4 tracks. Nostalgic, but yeah, I'm not used to the noise of tape anymore--at least the noise on a porta-cassette recorder...
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Old 03-01-2011, 10:52 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

I recently mixed using old analogue gear using Pro Tools effectively only as the playback source. With less options to play with, we actually made decisions quickly and our mix improved as a result.
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Old 03-02-2011, 12:22 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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Originally Posted by DrumEatDrum View Post
I have noticed vinyl has made a big come back in recent years.

But at the same time, many newer vinyl releases were still recorded to digital, so I'm not sure what the point is.
The vinyl puts the analog back in, somewhat.

Basically, you can record analog and transfer to digital, preserving the traits of analog. Or record to digital, and somewhere along the way introduce analog. But the earlier you make the analog step, such as with the basic tracks rather than a finished digital mix, the more old school it will be.

BTW, certain mics have a great warm sound that translates well to digital. Old ribbon mics are a real fave for serious engineers, and make drums sound fabulous.

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Old 03-02-2011, 01:03 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

A buddy of mine picked up the Bill Evans Village Vanguard date on vinyl and played it for me on his moderately high-end turntable. That recording is 50 years old. It sounded glorious to me, pops, crackles and all.
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Old 03-02-2011, 01:33 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

We have this discussion every now and then around the table here at Disney. And really, to us, analog is dead. The advantages of digital really outweigh the disadvantages. And as one of the gentlemen who wrote and recorded the original music for the Main Street Electrical Parade (back in '71) asked me over lunch, "could you go back to analog?" This guy isn't - and you could say he's been there and done that. It isn't nostalgia for him, he clearly knows the advantages of the new medium.

I thought about picking up a nice 8-track reel-to-reel to be the basis of my demo studio, and after looking at the maintenance costs of a 15-year-old machine and the fact that tape is just not available anymore, really made the decision for me. Even if you got yourself a nice Tascam DA88 8-track, there are so many moving parts in that machine it costs at least $200 to bring it back up to spec, and then replacing the heads?

As a photographer I have these same discussions with my photog buddies, basically the same discussion, but none of us are going back. I love film, but thanks to folks like Wozniak and Jobs and a little concept known as RAM - it isn't cost-effective to do either analog mediums.
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Old 03-02-2011, 01:49 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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Originally Posted by Bo Eder View Post
As a photographer I have these same discussions with my photog buddies, basically the same discussion, but none of us are going back. I love film, but thanks to folks like Wozniak and Jobs and a little concept known as RAM - it isn't cost-effective to do either analog mediums.
I'm with you on the sound equipment. There's a nostalgia for records and turntables and that stuff with me, but it's not enough to offset the disadvantages.

But I'm a photographer, too, and I can say I have no interest whatsoever in digital photography at this point. I spend all day on computers and working with Photoshop and the other tools is a lot of fun, but that has nothing to do with why I got into photography. I loved the challenge of getting the exposure right as much as I did capturing the subject.

For me, the best part was the experience and anticipation of going into the darkroom, working with the chemicals and practicing the art of things like dodging and burning. The whole thing was an isolationist experience for me - going into that room alone or with my dad - and the tactile aspects of it all; using the tongs to take the paper out of the stop bath and put it into the fixer; the safety lights; the sound of water running through the rinse tray... that was what it was all about for me.

So although taking photos might be easier and better now, that was never the point for me.
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Old 03-02-2011, 01:55 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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I'm with you on the sound equipment. There's a nostalgia for records and turntables and that stuff with me, but it's not enough to offset the disadvantages.

But I'm a photographer, too, and I can say I have no interest whatsoever in digital photography at this point. I spend all day on computers and working with Photoshop and the other tools is a lot of fun, but that has nothing to do with why I got into photography. I loved the challenge of getting the exposure right as much as I did capturing the subject.

For me, the best part was the experience and anticipation of going into the darkroom, working with the chemicals and practicing the art of things like dodging and burning. The whole thing was an isolationist experience for me - going into that room alone or with my dad - and the tactile aspects of it all; using the tongs to take the paper out of the stop bath and put it into the fixer; the safety lights; the sound of water running through the rinse tray... that was what it was all about for me.

So although taking photos might be easier and better now, that was never the point for me.
I get that and I tried to stick with film for as long as I could, but once you get into the business of going out for a day and banging through a bunch of high school student portraits and big group shots, your workflow just bogs down. Jobs like that are much quicker and easier done with digital, as are weddings and other events. If it was just me doing the Ansel Adams thing out on safari, then yeah, give me my 4x5 LF or an old Hasselblad camera and a mule to carry all the stuff and I'm there. But I never get to live that kind of charmed life!

I do know several photogs who only shoot film for everything and they argue the cost is about the same, and that's cool. They are definitely in the minority. Many places around here in Los Angeles are doing less and less film developing, so it's getting more expensive to shoot color 35mm film just for fun.
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Old 03-02-2011, 02:12 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Ah, I didn't realize you were talking about doing professional work. Yeah, that's a whole different ballgame. I called myself a photographer, but it was just a hobby for me. Big difference there for sure.
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Old 03-02-2011, 04:25 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?



Analog vs digital.

Vinyl is still being recorded to, so technically its not dead.

So analog has that nostalgic sound but I get the impression that digital is easier to work with, less things can go wrong with digital equipment.
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Old 03-02-2011, 04:59 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Bo I like the music/photo comparison. I shoot only on digital cameras now and I think the one main thing that music and music have in the digital age is the ease of fixing mistakes and deleting big mistakes. My one main camera on a medium setting or format and a 2 gig card will let me shoot about 3000 photos. That would obviously cost a ton in film. and of course there is the instant feedback. But again it's the ease of manipulation that sells either.
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Old 03-02-2011, 06:55 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Another interesting analogy is writing - typewriters v word processors - and its effect on the creative processs. My mother was a writer and technophobe. She refused to even look at work processors and never laid a finger on one until the day she died (mid 90s). Everything was done on her ancient typewriter. Minor typos were dealt with by white out and major changes meant rewriting the page(s).

There was no chance to cut and paste sentences or paragraphs, and generally far less flexibility in changing anything. That meant there was more pressure in the "performance" because she'd be punished for lapses. Many artists in various areas talk about how pressure can drive their creativity. I used to know an artist who waited until the last minute to paint before her exhibitions because she felt that brought the best out in her.

Just one of those intangibles that's changed with the advent of digital.
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:43 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Polly, Bo and everyone, actually.

This actually gets to the crux of the issue. Polly says about her mother, 8Mile, Bo and Grunter about cameras. The analogue formats force you to make decisions earlier because there is no going back and changing it - or it's at least a lot, lot harder to change it.

I think that's the real advantage (or is it?) of digital everything is that you can go back over and edit more easily with an 'undo' button at your disposal. We can argue about analogue sound and the number of grains a ISO200 film might have over a 5MP camera (for the record, I have a small collection of film cameras - a Pentax SFXN, and a pair of student Prakticas (MTL 3 and 5 - the 3 is jammed though) as well as a couple of other lying around and I was brought up with a photography mad Dad)) - so I understand the appeal of the film formats and their tangible quality as well as the downside.

It's arguably more critical in film and video to edit the minute detail because the eye is generally more discerning that the ear, and I agree - if I'm doing quick shots for something like DW, then I'll use an old digital camera because it's quicker, easier and more productive. If I'm doing it for pleasure, I'll use the film if I can - because I actually think it's more 'fun'.

If you're talking about art, then this is where it all gets a bit stickier. I record to digital because it is cheap, quick, high quality and simple. More-or-less all the things that tape isn't, but I often get caught in the 'endless mixing' loop because my workflow doesn't have to be defined by the equipment. The endless freedom to chop and change makes it much harder for me to be productive - so for me, the only solution is to use analogue outboard and effectively use Pro Tools only for playback and recording to stereo from the desk. That forces my workflow and ensures that I'm actually making decisions. I'm sure that if I were a professional, this wouldn't be a problem but as a (fairly experienced) amateur - it absolutely is. I can mix in analogue in two hours (for say, a static 16 - track, four minute mix) and get a decent enough result. I can spend literally triple that doing it 'in the box' because nobody is forcing my decisions. And I need my decisions made early! Like with a typewriter, like with a film camera.
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Old 03-02-2011, 09:04 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Quote:
Bo I like the music/photo comparison. I shoot only on digital cameras now and I think the one main thing that music and music have in the digital age is the ease of fixing mistakes and deleting big mistakes. My one main camera on a medium setting or format and a 2 gig card will let me shoot about 3000 photos. That would obviously cost a ton in film. and of course there is the instant feedback. But again it's the ease of manipulation that sells either.
I guess the bad thing about being able to cut out mistakes is that musicians won't strive for a really rock solid recording...which ends up making a final result stale.

eg. Compression is used to to keep volume levels (dynamics) at a consistent level, this then takes the "life" out of a recording. Musicians that have more focus on their dynamics wouldn't have to have so much compression and then that essence of expression stays in the reocrding.

I'm not saying I hate digital, I think it is great, how else would music (or any media format) be able to be beamed and shared across the internet.

...but I also don't think that analog is completely useless either; I don't mind if there is a bit of noise on the vinyl tracks that the radio station plays.

...often in music recording analog equipment (especially for some special audio effects) and digital equipment are both used.

I'll put in some more fuel for discussion:

The potential of digital recording is often not used well enough. Digital recording allows for a wider dynamic range (volume range between the quietest sounds and the loudest sounds) but unfortunately so much music has the life compressed out of it - this is called the loudness war. It happened in the days before digital, it is the reason why remastered CDs have such crap sound.

The existence of digital equipment makes you appreciate how painstakingly recorded a sonically innovative album like The Dark Side of The Moon was.

Imagine how much sonic innovation be used with digital.
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Old 03-02-2011, 09:09 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

BassDriver. Just to bring you up on a specific point.

You know those funk records from the 70's? The really, really 'alive' sounding ones?

Massive compression.
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Old 03-02-2011, 09:36 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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Originally Posted by bermuda View Post
BTW, certain mics have a great warm sound that translates well to digital. Old ribbon mics are a real fave for serious engineers, and make drums sound fabulous.

Bermuda
I've been told this by two different Engineers but never heard it yet. I was told that tracking drums to those old 2" Analog tapes produce a HUGE drum sound, greater than digital. I must say my curiosity is peeking since today's modern drums and heads selections make drums sound fantastic compared to the old days. I was basically told, "If you have access to a 2" analog tape recorder in the studio, USE IT for the drums. What do you think about this?
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Old 03-02-2011, 10:47 AM
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Polly, Bo and everyone, actually.

This actually gets to the crux of the issue. Polly says about her mother, 8Mile, Bo and Grunter about cameras. The analogue formats force you to make decisions earlier because there is no going back and changing it - or it's at least a lot, lot harder to change it.

I think that's the real advantage (or is it?) of digital everything is that you can go back over and edit more easily with an 'undo' button at your disposal. We can argue about analogue sound and the number of grains a ISO200 film might have over a 5MP camera (for the record, I have a small collection of film cameras - a Pentax SFXN, and a pair of student Prakticas (MTL 3 and 5 - the 3 is jammed though) as well as a couple of other lying around and I was brought up with a photography mad Dad)) - so I understand the appeal of the film formats and their tangible quality as well as the downside.

It's arguably more critical in film and video to edit the minute detail because the eye is generally more discerning that the ear, and I agree - if I'm doing quick shots for something like DW, then I'll use an old digital camera because it's quicker, easier and more productive. If I'm doing it for pleasure, I'll use the film if I can - because I actually think it's more 'fun'.

If you're talking about art, then this is where it all gets a bit stickier. I record to digital because it is cheap, quick, high quality and simple. More-or-less all the things that tape isn't, but I often get caught in the 'endless mixing' loop because my workflow doesn't have to be defined by the equipment. The endless freedom to chop and change makes it much harder for me to be productive - so for me, the only solution is to use analogue outboard and effectively use Pro Tools only for playback and recording to stereo from the desk. That forces my workflow and ensures that I'm actually making decisions. I'm sure that if I were a professional, this wouldn't be a problem but as a (fairly experienced) amateur - it absolutely is. I can mix in analogue in two hours (for say, a static 16 - track, four minute mix) and get a decent enough result. I can spend literally triple that doing it 'in the box' because nobody is forcing my decisions. And I need my decisions made early! Like with a typewriter, like with a film camera.
You know, if Ansel Adams were around today - I bet he'd be touting the advantages of the digital medium. Just as music artists tout the advantages of digital too. But the process of making music or images, is the same. You still have to have the ideas to execute. And if you can't seem to get anything done and in the can, that's not the fault of the gear. It's like folks with huge drumsets and folks with small drumsets: how do you use the gear?

Granted, I think the problem is that there's so many ways to get something done, that everyone has to take their time to come up with their own workflow solutions to their end product. Back in the days of film and analog recording, it was a simpler process because you had less choices on how to get it done. But that's not a problem of the gear, that's the brain's fault for not seeing the forest for the trees.

I got a chance to hear professional LIFE photog Joe McNally speak at a conference and he says he'll never go back to film (and the man has been in his business for almost 40 years now). His view of these newfangled digital thingamabob cameras is this: you just bought yourself a Ferrari - don't drive it like the Little ol' lady from Pasadena who only drives to church on Sundays at 30 miles per hour!

My little Zoom R16 16-track recorder is something that the Beatles would've killed for back in the day - it's so easy to do CD-quality recordings with it. It's up to me to max it to its full potential and attempt to make art with it. If anything, having gone digital has made it increasingly hard for me to blame the gear when the images suck or the recording is not up to snuff. And I think that's a good thing.
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Old 03-02-2011, 10:53 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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I've been told this by two different Engineers but never heard it yet. I was told that tracking drums to those old 2" Analog tapes produce a HUGE drum sound, greater than digital. I must say my curiosity is peeking since today's modern drums and heads selections make drums sound fantastic compared to the old days. I was basically told, "If you have access to a 2" analog tape recorder in the studio, USE IT for the drums. What do you think about this?
I think this is great. Provided you can actually find a new roll of tape that won't cost you $500 which only gives you about 15 minutes of recording time. There's a reason these older analog studios are getting expensive: maintenance on the gear (a good repair technician costs about $65 an hour to keep that stuff running up to snuff) and tape. Factor in the brick and mortar costs (an outrageously high electric bill since the older gear sucks more amperage and you need better and silent air conditioning to keep it all cool) and I'm not surprised ProTools took off the way it did.

But a friend of mine has a 2" tape deck in his completely analog recording studio that I helped him build, so if you want to go there, I'll give you his number. I suggested to him at one point to keep all the old analog gear but replace the recorder part with ProTools. He thought I was crazy.
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Old 03-02-2011, 01:04 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Bo, I don't disagree that it becomes a mental thing.

That said, I think there are differences with the physicality of analogue mixing that are different from doing it entirely digitally - granted, these can be rectified with a good control surface (usually) but there is a difference even there. It's not something I can objectively quantify - but I feel better doing my mixes on analogue gear.

That's not to say that it's any better though. I know that my computer and the associated software and equipment available to me now would have been considerably more than state-of-the-art even twenty years ago. That's not taking microphones into account, obviously, but the access to gear that is possible now - financially as well as logistically is incredible. It means a lot more rubbish will be produced, but it also means that people like me can do good work with a relatively low outlay. The same is true of your R16 and I've been impressed with those interfaces since I first saw them.

Digital is a superior form, objectively. The quality is better than tape, the flexibility is immeasurably more and everything is much easier - including distribution. I enjoy using analogue, but in a professional environment I wouldn't track or edit using it. I would use whatever is better to get the job done and at the front of the process, it is undeniably digital for the majority of cases. But sometimes I like the old gear.
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Old 03-02-2011, 01:20 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Thing is, with digital's incredible advantages there's the temptation to use it - as much as possible. That's where you end up with quantising, pitch correction, punch ins etc used as a matter of course rather than like a Phantom Agent's gun (only as a last resort!). Maybe I'm just idealistic, but I prefer the sound, and the idea, of a band performing on a recording together, achieving as much separation as possible through directional mics and baffles.

It reminds me of research psychologist, Dan Gilbert's talk about happiness and how too much choice can actually work against happiness. I personally find having too many options a bit confusing.
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Old 03-02-2011, 04:41 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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I've been told this by two different Engineers but never heard it yet. I was told that tracking drums to those old 2" Analog tapes produce a HUGE drum sound, greater than digital. I must say my curiosity is peeking since today's modern drums and heads selections make drums sound fantastic compared to the old days. I was basically told, "If you have access to a 2" analog tape recorder in the studio, USE IT for the drums. What do you think about this?
Recorded properly, all drum sounds can be fantastic, there's just a difference in the way they're captured. As I mentioned, there's a saturation (warmth from distortion) that adds to the old sound in a way that digital doesn't inherently do. Compare film to video, both accepted in their own way, but with different textures. Like video where a "film look" can be applied, digital audio can also be manipulated to get an analog vibe. It's not exactly the same, but suitable for a generation listening to mp3s through ear buds.

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Old 03-02-2011, 06:48 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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Bo, I don't disagree that it becomes a mental thing.

That said, I think there are differences with the physicality of analogue mixing that are different from doing it entirely digitally - granted, these can be rectified with a good control surface (usually) but there is a difference even there. It's not something I can objectively quantify - but I feel better doing my mixes on analogue gear.

That's not to say that it's any better though. I know that my computer and the associated software and equipment available to me now would have been considerably more than state-of-the-art even twenty years ago. That's not taking microphones into account, obviously, but the access to gear that is possible now - financially as well as logistically is incredible. It means a lot more rubbish will be produced, but it also means that people like me can do good work with a relatively low outlay. The same is true of your R16 and I've been impressed with those interfaces since I first saw them.

Digital is a superior form, objectively. The quality is better than tape, the flexibility is immeasurably more and everything is much easier - including distribution. I enjoy using analogue, but in a professional environment I wouldn't track or edit using it. I would use whatever is better to get the job done and at the front of the process, it is undeniably digital for the majority of cases. But sometimes I like the old gear.
I understand. I would love nothing better than to physically use a patchbay to route a signal from my API mic pre to a LA-2A tube compressor and then onto a physical 4'x8' metal plate in another room for reverb on it's way to a MCI 2-inch deck running at 30 ips. And then the joy of doing an actual razor blade edit on the half-inch mixdown tape using nothing but a china marker and splicing blocks...and before the actual tracking, I laid down a 60Hz tone for 20 minutes so I can sync that music to an ancient U-matic video deck (an ancient form of SMPTE) - too ;)
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:37 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Oh shush you! Your avatar doesn't mean you can get away with that level of sarcasm, sir!

I'm not denying that digital is easier, it is. But the lack of choice and force of workflow means I work quicker when mixing. Editing? No way would I do that on analogue. Not in a million years!
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Old 03-02-2011, 10:24 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Analog's doing well (financially) when I pop into my local record stores.


From my personal experience, the formats go like so:

MP3's - Only if I've got a hard copy, usually a CD, version as well. I'm not too hard on this, but there have been many times, where I've bought a song or two and several months or a year down the line it get's lost or deleted. I transfer music to and from my phone at least twice a week, it's easy to forget something is still there and wipe the sd card and then S.O.L.

CD - My personal favorite. I just like to have the actual physical copy. I don't know why I just have a serious problem only having my music in digitized file format. Although it's just as cumbersome as a cassette tape so I rip the discs over.

Cassette - Ha, that's a good one. Only if it happens to be 1990 again.

Vinyl - Yes please!!! Any day of the week as a mater of fact. The best thing about vinyl in my opinion is that you can get full, somewhat obscure albums in their entirety. I hate compilations with a passion.
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:17 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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Oh shush you! Your avatar doesn't mean you can get away with that level of sarcasm, sir!

I'm not denying that digital is easier, it is. But the lack of choice and force of workflow means I work quicker when mixing. Editing? No way would I do that on analogue. Not in a million years!

I had this dream that I had to do some editing and I was on a desert island with splicing blocks but no razor blades! Aaaaaahhhhhh!
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Old 03-03-2011, 04:59 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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I had this dream that I had to do some editing and I was on a desert island with splicing blocks but no razor blades! Aaaaaahhhhhh!
All hail Joel Tall! :)
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Old 03-03-2011, 05:17 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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When it comes to listening to music it seems that digital has dominated with the popularity of CDs and MP3s.

Is the analog age collecting dust or are there any more advancements just as there have been in recent years with digital?

I was surprised when I found out a Melbourne community radio station I listen to was playing new tracks from new albums that were released on vinyl.

Now there is this big debate about analog vs digital but I've got the impression (from what I've read on the net) is that analog (being analogously recorded) makes a truer representation of sound waves and has a 'warmer sound' etc. while digital allows for a higher dynamic range (which sadly isn't exploited enough)...their pros and cons go on

...and what about tape? Does anyone still record to tape? (I'm thinking Compact Cassette Tapes - a much more portable analog format).

I had these kind of wonderings and a few weeks ago I ended up picking up and listening to a few old southern-european-folk tracks (on compact cassette tape) that were collecting dust at my grandfather's place.

...and what's next after digital...quantum?
We are pretty much at the stage where analog is being used as an effect within the digital recording - have a look at the new desk that Neve is making - it's fully analog with no automation and is designed to add 'that Neve analog sound" to your ProTools (or alternative) sessions. (btw I love analog)

Cassette? half of an 1/8" tape going at approx 1.84 feet per second? No thanks.

What's after digital? If we can teach a computer to count to more than 1 maybe there's something - I suspect it will be a fluid organic soup that can think...... but then it won't need us anymore ;-)
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Old 03-03-2011, 07:36 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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What's after digital? If we can teach a computer to count to more than 1 maybe there's something - I suspect it will be a fluid organic soup that can think...... but then it won't need us anymore ;-)
A fluid organic soup? That's just a human being sans the the framework and outer layer :)

Everyone says it's quantum but the only thing I know about it is that it uses paradoxes. Also, at the quantum level the act of observation changes the event - something that anyone who's dealt with stage nerves would recognise.


Quote:
Originally Posted by RollingStone000
Vinyl - Yes please!!! Any day of the week as a mater of fact. The best thing about vinyl in my opinion is that you can get full, somewhat obscure albums in their entirety. I hate compilations with a passion.
RollingStone, I've never been a hi-fi buff so I found the switch to digital was simply more convenient and saved me from the pops and scratches ... apart from one thing ...

Album cover art. We've lost all those visual and tactile experiences. My big sister's copy of Sgt Pepper really thrilled me in 1966 - it helped imbue the mind-bending music with an extra sense of magic that I remember to this day. Now the visual side of things is covered by video and, when that's well done, it's a definite advancement. Of course a bad video gives about as much pleasure as this:



... I wonder if the dorky videos of today will be as funny to people in the future as this cover? :)

On the other hand there was Jim Flora's wonderful cover art:






... not to mention the legendary Roger Dean:






That's what I miss the most.
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Old 03-03-2011, 11:55 PM
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We are pretty much at the stage where analog is being used as an effect within the digital recording
Not only in recording but even in the live performances as well. You ever hear of Serato or Traktor? Long story short, time-coded vinyl. You set up your turntables, and hook them up to the interface unit. The software is loaded onto a desktop or laptop with your whole music/sound collection visible. The software and interface read the signal that's being emitted from the time-coded vinyl records with is reading your music collection as well and where a decade and more ago you used to have to lug crates of records, now you only need two.

Although, now a lot of your old school cats that had to lug crates look at the new comers who've only used a Serato or Traktor and kind of think of it as cheating.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ja9F63jeGOU

Polly: I've got to agree with you on that art aspect. They've got to figure out how to digitally convey all of the backing information and content that an actual physical copy does. That's the biggest reason I don't buy music in digital form only.
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Old 03-04-2011, 11:49 AM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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I don't know why I just have a serious problem only having my music in digitized file format.
The information on a CD is a digital file format BTW.
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Old 03-04-2011, 06:33 PM
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The information on a CD is a digital file format BTW.
Well yeah... smart guy. Just kidding, I kind of had a feeling there would be a hang up with that statement of mine.

I was kind of referring to this push that tech companies are making to store everything in their cloud system. I just don't trust them; not in the context of big brother, they know where you are, etc. They've easily had the information on a large majority of the population for the last ten years, at least. I just don't trust them in regards to their capabilities to have that information for the next twenty or thirty years and not screw it up in some way. At least if I have a hard copy CD, cassette, or record, it'd be up to me to screw it up. If I've got something stored on someone else's server, there's just more of a chance for something to go wrong.

And just a random prediction, I wouldn't be surprised if in maybe ten or fifteen years down the line people start referring to CDs as analog as well. One of those generational things.
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Old 03-04-2011, 09:08 PM
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I was kind of referring to this push that tech companies are making to store everything in their cloud system. I just don't trust them
Sure, Sony's abortive foray into digital espionage on their customers hardly inspires confidence. Bear in mind, they covertly installed the rootkits via their CDs ... it doesn't matter what you do, they'll find you. "They" being ...


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Old 03-05-2011, 12:54 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

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I was kind of referring to this push that tech companies are making to store everything in their cloud system. I just don't trust them; not in the context of big brother, they know where you are, etc. They've easily had the information on a large majority of the population for the last ten years, at least. I just don't trust them in regards to their capabilities to have that information for the next twenty or thirty years and not screw it up in some way. At least if I have a hard copy CD, cassette, or record, it'd be up to me to screw it up. If I've got something stored on someone else's server, there's just more of a chance for something to go wrong.
Something along those lines is the phenomena of digital obsolescence...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_obsolescence

...and this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PC3z8sXpBHg
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Old 03-22-2011, 08:56 PM
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Default Re: How are analog formats doing?

Если Вам тотчас необходимо английский в офисе, компания "Акцент" легко и просто сможет Вам это сделать. Мы вдумчиво обращаемся к обучению Ваших подчиненных, потому они в итоге имеют все требуемые знания. Если Вы нацелены на качественный результат обучения, то вы его заимеете наиболее полно . Специалисты компании "Акцент" понимают, какое бремя ответственности они несут, именно поэтому итог курсов полностью Вас удовлетворит. Примите нужное решение прямо сегодня, и весьма быстро познания английского языка у Ваших подчиненных выйдут на новый уровень.
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