martes, 30 de noviembre de 2010

Panning. Taking performance to stereo

Panning is basically distribute our sound fonts around an imaginary arch joining our ears and in front of us. By this reason, is very important get a good distribution of them. We will get this using the panning with the volumen and reverberation.

We achieve amplitude for our sound and we clear it of noise the zones used by some instruments.
All we know the famous "Wall of sound" developed by Phil Spector.
This power on this effect is due in grand part to these elements

Go with it. We know that we ear in stereo and this one give us a sensation about how the sound is distributed. We have to think about the band in front of us. ¿ How many members have, wich instrument/musician is the most relevant, etc ?
We can imagine a kind of clock in front of us (as the aviators).  9 o'clock will be the left extrem, 12h will be the center and the 3 o'clock will be the right edge.

If we will use the BR-600, we can apply a range on each track from L50 to R50

We will advance from the easiest examples to the most specific.

Main Voice  and Drums/Perscussion
These elements have to be on the center, this is, at 12 o'clock.
Speaking about the drums, this on have is "natural" pan: kick and snare on the center, aerials and toms panned
On the BR-600 we will not need to modify this parameter.

In my opinion a like to left the bass with a light separation from the singer.
On the BR, we are speaking about values between 15-25.

Electric Guitars.
On the guitars I apply a hard balancing. As this sound is the more predominant we have space to the rest of instruments, so I use values between 30-40. 
Soloing, we can center the sound, using the same value applied to the bass, but in the other channel.
If we have an special pass, or we should left it on a second plane, we have to apply high values to this parameter and decrease the constrast with more reverb. We have to be careful with the extrems, this could produce unplesant effects.
If we have two guitars, we will move them to both channels. But it isn't necesary to have the same value. Even, it's recommended to use different values. In example, one guitar with R45 and the other with L35

Using the balancing over the guitars we can get very fat and clean sounds. On this point I would like to add a reference to Donovan Banks and his video about this question. On latter post we will discuss about this theme.

Acoustic Guitars
This kind of guitars are usually nest to the main voice. For this reason, we can start with a light efect, around 20-30. And then we can increase the range
In other cases, if there are some acoustic guitars we can distribute them, on both channels and giving them higher values

This efect has been used on our song "I'm Not Alone". We recorded four guitars and them applied diffents values to the panning, creating in this way an wid sound, without annoy the voice.

Chorus and other instruments.
To distribute the rest of instruments we have to be sure about the finnal effect that we want to get. Normally we start with those values  between the bass and the guitars (25-30) or moving then to the limits (50)
We have to combine the panning whit the Reverberation and the Volume

REVERB y VOLUME applied on the OUTPUT signal
On the post dedicate to the BOUNC we will analize the  volumen on the final step.
Now, we're going to work with the volume to create a sensation of distance between us antd the instruments.

With the reverberation we could achive a sensation for deph for our record. With higher values this effect will be strong and we will get more distance from the main sound.
We we apply reverberation we need to adjust the volumen, on some case decreassing it. It could be sound strange but the rev add a little amount of volume.

We usually apply a medium rev to the drums (25-30) give them more body, and an slight value to the voice (10-15) to amplify it's sound

You've to be careful when you apply higher values to the voice, because when we are mastering we can find a result very exaggerated . This is on the the reason why we remove all the reverb on the input, appling it on the final bounce.

As you can see this is a easy introduction but effective.
On this point of the production I suggest you to use headphones, as thier design will help us to "see" cleary the position of each instrument. On this step, the monitors don't get us this precission.

On the next post .... BOUCING !!!!

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