May 23, 2020 at 12:21 pm #46478nosignalallnoiseParticipant
The important thing is not to overdrive anything when the recording is being made because once anything gets clipped, you can reduce the gain after the fact but you cannot eliminate the clip distortion at the flat topped peak.
Welllll….. not exactly. You can sort of “fix” it, to some limited extent, by playing around with the compander and equalisation within limits (I’ve even done it myself to put a little “air” back into shittily-produced recordings on Youtube and Archive, and let’s not forget 21st century CDs) but it’s just an emergency band-aid and is best not even being done at all. I don’t recommend it.
It takes just as much time and effort to do a recording the wrong way and screw it up as it does to do it right, so why not do it the right way from the beginning? (This is a general rant, not directed at you in particular, lastday.)May 24, 2020 at 2:32 pm #46497Greg_CharlesParticipant
I have had a fair share of clients asking “what can be done” with digital overs, and the answer is always the same. Not much. You can take a digitally clipped track, lower the volume, then apply expansion, which is sort of the opposite of compression, send it to a dynamic EQ, and even side-chain it if there is a rhythmic element, maybe even mess with Mid/Side, but the bottom line is it will always be distorted. Digital zero is always digital zero and generally, its nasty. It isn’t a near as pleasing distortion as analog tape saturation.
Sure you can soft-clip, which is very common, but you better reference the results in a sonicaly designed room so you can hear differences. There are always compromises.
As far as tools for vinyl, there are a lot of choices depending on your goals and frequency of use. I’m sure there are free ones that are most likely very basic. Waves has a couple different bundles that address clicks, noise, humm, crackling etc. Izotope is in my opinion higher quality and a bit easier to achieve the same.
And for the OP here, they even have a plug to make it sound like vinyl.
So you could take a CD and run it through this for a “vinyl” show.
And if you do this type of work frequently I would suggest Wavelab Pro. It’s much faster, way more accurate, and has many more features. While it’s aimed at commercial mastering, the batch processing tools are very helpful and extremely fast when encoding to any digital format.
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