SP2. Flute and Vocal Processing.
No.1 – High Pass Filtering.
After recording the flute, I then began to add essential High Pass Filtering with the cutoff point at around 140Hz. Below is a screen shot of the 7 Band EQ plugin used on my flute track.
No.2 – Compression.
Below is a screen shot of the compression plugin used on my flute track as well as a list of the settings used.
Flute Compression Settings.
- ATTACK = Fastest Possible.
- RELEASE = Fastest Possible/Auto.
- THRESHOLD = -10/-14dB.
- RATIO = 3:1 to 8:1.
- KNEE = Hard/Soft.
3. Echo Chamber Recording.
Once the flute had been recorded, I decided to implement the ‘Echo Chamber’ technique that was part of Phil Spector’s ‘Wall of Sound’, used in tracks such as George Harrison’s Awaiting On You All (1971).
Below is a video explaining echo chambers and Spector’s ‘Wall of Sound’ technique:
The echo chamber recording, in this instance, was done by sending a signal from the studio i.e. flute. out through the monitors then recording the sound with the reverberation added by the ground floor corridor and foyer of the MPA Helmore building. The process was carried out in the following order;
- 1x AKG 414, using the Omni polar pattern, placed on the outside corner of the studio.
- Open the studio doors.
- Patched the mic into the front of the patch bay by running a XLR cable straight into the control room.
- Bring the signal into Pro Tools on its own separate audio track.
- Muted all other audio tracks except the already recorded flute track and the track I was recording onto.
- Hit record.
Below are photos of the mic outside the studio as well as the rooms used as my echo chamber.
I have also posted the flute track with the reverb added by the echo chamber. (note. Although the reverb added is very clear and effective, there is background noise generated by the building which cannot be helped, however, this can barely be heard when mixed with the rest of the project).
Once this was done, I could then finish this flute recording by adding a short crossfade to silence the clip made by the end cut in the audio (as shown in the screen shot to the right) as well as using the HPF and Compression plugins/parameters equal to those used on the original flute audio (As shown above).
No.1 – High Pass Filtering.
Again, I have used the 7-band EQ plugin in Pro Tools, this time with the cutoff at around 190 Hz. Below is a screenshot of the HPF used on the vocal track.
No.2 – Automatic Double Tracking.
To get the sound of multiple recorded vocal tracks without re-recording, I used the ADT (Automatic Double Tracking) technique created by George Martin and Ken Townsend when working on overdubbing vocal tracks by John Lennon. This is done by adding a delay plugin on the vocal track with a short, slap-back delay time, a low rate, the mix at 100% and adjusting the depth to taste. This creates an Low Frequency Oscillator effect on the pitch of the vocal track, giving the illusion of an overdubbed vocal-line recording. Below is a screen shot of the delay plugin used to create this effect and a short preview of the ADT vocal track. (note. There is a small clip halfway through vocal audio, due to small error in 0 plane cross-fading when combining different audio takes, not recognised until after consolidation of combined audio files and deletion of originals).
No.3 – Effects.
This track uses the Pro Tools D-verb plugin on a mono aux track, to which I bussed my vocal audio track. This was done because there are two sets of vocal tracks. One is played using normal playback with added reverb, and the other with reverse reverb (explained in point No.4). Below are screen shots of the aux track carrying the effects plugin (also used for reverse reverb processing), effects plugin itself and a preview of the reverb’d vocals (note. There is a small clip halfway through vocal audio, due to small error in 0 plane crossfading when combining different audio takes, not recognised until after consolidation of combined audio files and deletion of originals).
No.4 – Reverse Reverb.
This is an advancement on the effects of reverse audio processing, an technique used by George Martin on tracks such as Rain (1966) by The Beatles, which can be viewed in this video of the 2009 re-master of the same track.
The steps to implement the technique of reverse reverb processing are listed below (with corresponding screen shots).
- Duplicate vocal audio.
- Reverse the duplicate (by going to ‘Audio suite – reverse – process’).
- Send the duplicate vocal track to a bus.
- Create a mono aux track with input from the reverse vocal track bus.
- Insert a reverb plugin on the mono aux track with mix around 100% and send the output to a stereo bus pair.
- Create a stereo audio track and select the input to be the same bus as the mono aux output.
- Put stereo audio track in record mode then record the reverb from the entire reversed vocal selection.
- Once recorded, reverse both the recorded backwards reverb and the reversed vocals so that they are reverted to original forwards playback.
Below is a preview of my vocal track with the reverse reverb effect (note. For Interest, compare to the original sample from the Halo Soundtrack (2003) [refer to ‘SP2. Flute and Vocal Recording Post’]).
No.5 – Compression.
The final piece of processing that was done for this project was the vocal compression. As with the rest of my audio tracks for this project, I have again decided to use the set of guidelines that aided me in the compression of my vocals in the first studio project. Below is a list of my compression settings as well as a screenshot of the compression plugin itself.
- ATTACK = Fastest Possible.
- RELEASE = Lowest Possible/Auto.
- THRESHOLD = -3/-8dB
- RATIO = 4:1/12:1.
- KNEE = Soft.