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knuckle 03-30-2011 07:10 PM


Originally Posted by ferg (Post 2565905)
I'm a software developer / SQL DBA (don't judge me, man), and I, too, generally try to avoid dealing with anything outside of work that reminds me of work. I've found that recording and editing audio and video on the computer is more like messing with music gear than the computer stuff I do for work. Sure, if you want to be a professional audio engineer, then that line probably gets blurred a little, but for doing decent demo recordings, marrying them to video, etc, etc - there's really not that much to it (particularly when compared to dealing with Oracle).

When it comes to recording separate audio and video here's how I do it (I'm doing this to show how simple it can be, not saying you should do exactly this):

Step 1: record (in 1 take) audio with a zoom portable recorder and video with a portable video camera.

Step 2: using Vegas, start a project and load the 2 files.

Step 3: Activate the pluraleyes plugin for Vegas. This is a plugin which will automatically sync the audio and video.

Step 4: export the video.

Sounds easy enough. What flavor of Vegas? I notice there's a few. Also how intelligent is the plugin to where it actually knows how to sync the video? Is it based on timing, that is when the video starts? Because the audio and video essentially start at the same time it syncs that way?

ferg 03-30-2011 07:18 PM


Originally Posted by knuckle (Post 2566100)
Sounds easy enough. What flavor of Vegas? I notice there's a few. Also how intelligent is the plugin to where it actually knows how to sync the video? Is it based on timing, that is when the video starts? Because the audio and video essentially start at the same time it syncs that way?

Well, that's the catch - the plugin is $150 and only works w/ Vegas Pro (which ain't cheap). It's not that difficult to just slide to align them, though really - I got this for multi-shoot stuff, but since I have it, I use it for everything.

As for how it works - it analyzes the audio -since the the video you take w/ your iphone will have it's own audio, it compares that to the other audio tracks and positions them based on sounds. Then you just mute or delete the iPhone audio and vwalla.

But really, if you don't wanna spend the can just drop them both in there, and eyeball where it should be based on a few hand claps at the beginning to make it easier...etc...

knuckle 03-30-2011 07:31 PM

Jeesh, vegas pro is 600 bucks. Holy crap.

alohachris 03-30-2011 08:50 PM

Aloha Knuckle
Aloha Knuckle,

Three questions.

So what do you care what anyone thinks?

Again, what are you treating your recording space with?

What's your recording signal chain, again?


PS: Jok'im if he can't take an eff!

Fran Guidry 03-30-2011 08:56 PM

You can accomplish the same thing manually by clapping in front of the camera. It's remarkably simple to align the clearly visible spikes in the two audio waveforms.

And you can align audio, trim heads and tails, merge clips, and tweak the audio all in REAPER, currently costing $40 for this and the next version. Or in a low cost version of Vegas. Or one of many other tools.


ThursOctApr 03-31-2011 02:35 AM

It looks like you've had a lot of good audio recording advice so far.. + 1 for the suggestion of Zoom. I agree that there is too much reverb on the voice, it sounds very boomy - just pull it back a little bit. Are these originals? If so I really love the first link you sent!! It's wonderful. "Do You Believe?"

I didn't think your audio was that terrible at all.. it's decent enough considering what you're recording on. What worried me about that guy's post was that he was attacking you musically, saying that you tone was terrible and basically that you hadn't improved at all, and that, really, you suck and shouldn't try.

He's wrong!! Don't listen to him at all. Kudos to you for writing and recording and playing. You're certainly play well and I actually really love your song.. I don't take easily to much music straight away. Keep up the wonderful work!! Love this song!!

You'll sound awesome in the studio, just take your time and don't pay heed to these virtual internet fools.


PS. Anybody who thinks they can speak for everybody on an online forum by claiming that "nobody is telling you the truth" has some serious self-esteem issues of their own!

skyver 03-31-2011 03:03 AM

It sounds pretty good to me. The guitar sounds a little bassy to me, but anybody who says that sucks is probably just jealous.

Rodger 03-31-2011 10:54 AM

This isn't going to be a popular comment, but when we put our music out on a forum and invite comments, are we looking for feedback... or, are we hoping for only positive comments? If we're looking for positive comments and not so interested in critical feedback, anything negative gives us a lot of self doubt. If we're serious about taking our music somewhere beyond the hobby stage, it would be wise to take specific advice and act on it.

I wouldn't say the guy's comments make him a jerk. The fact is that he seems to be following your postings and based his comments on your songs over a year's time. OK, he could have said it in a nicer way. It's possible that he sees potential in you and was hoping to see progress. He didn't knock your song, just the way it was recorded. There is some truth in his comment about few giving negative feedback. When I hear something on a forum that is flawed, I rarely give comments because it's safer that way - especially on the internet. If I give specific positive advice, I try to pick out things that I particularly liked about it - "great solo guitar tone - especially starting at the 2:10 point in the song. What guitar/amp combo were you using?"

Spend some time at the Home Recording Forum's MP3 Clinic. There are some real jerks there. The best feedback (and that is what we should REALLY be interested in) comes in specific advice from the serious people there: i.e.; too much compression, reverb... bass is muddy, etc. Posters there are looking for feedback on their recordings... not so much on song quality. Most of the positive feedback is real brief... "Nice work! I like it!" That doesn't help us much as far as improving. The comment that "Your tone sux!" doesn't help much either without specific advice on how to improve it.

Music - especially ORIGINAL music - is about as personal as it gets for us. Negative comments to us hurts. But, we have to get thick skin about it. My experience is that we aren't as good as our most glowing admirers tell us, nor as bad as our worst critics tell us. The "truth" is usually somewhere in between. the secret is to find the folks that know what they're listening to and trust them to be honest with us. That's usually NOT family and close friends - they're way too close to you and would never say anything to hurt you. If you think the guy was talking just to sound important, then ignore it. If there's a chance that he DOES know what he's talking about, why not reply back and ask for some feedback on how to improve? That goes against human nature... we tend to hate our critics and don't really want to acknowledge them. If his comments are mean-spirited and not specific, then maybe he is a jerk.

If you end up improving your recording techniques based on the guy's comments, that couldn't be a bad thing.

There's some good advice posted here about improved recording techniques. Unfortunately, serious home recording takes a lot of time and money. I've been at it for years and the learning curve is painful and slow. Rarely do we have the luxury of having a personal teacher train us. My advice is to do a ton of research about products and techniques and find one that works for you. BUT - if you thought GAS was a problem! GAS to home recordists stands for Gear Acq Syndrome. Recording interface, mics, preamps, plugins or hardware effects, stands, cables. It gets expensive and we make some poor purchasing decisions sometimes.

Good luck and keep plugging away!

KMHaynes 03-31-2011 11:34 AM

After listening to a couple of your clips, here's my un-professional take:

1. Guitar and other instruments sound good -- I can clearly hear the difference between a guitar, dobro, cello, etc. And the instrument mix is pretty good -- nothing drowning out anything else.

2. Vocals, however, have too much reverb, sitting way too far back in the mix -- you probably need the vocal mic direct into your board instead of mic'ing the PA (if that's what you are doing).

3. You might want to use a metronome visually so you can keep a steady beat -- "American Indian" has several rushed passages, and then you can tell you are trying to get back the starting speed.

4. Lastly, edit your "live" tracks to remove the first and last 20-30 seconds with all the sounds of walking over to your performing area, picking up guitar, sniffing, etc! Edit all that out.

Keep going!! Your voice is perfect for the rootsy style of music you play!

knuckle 03-31-2011 11:45 AM

Appreciate the comments guys. I'm using a genz benz shen 300LT stereo acoustic amp and an acoustic brand AG 30 as sort of a monitor.

To me, my voice sounds better with reverb, but I can't really hear it too much in the tune when I listen to it. But I did have it up quite a bit. Maybe that's what's killing it? Funny, the songs I have no reverb on, some have over 10k hits. Just me on the couch with guitar. I figured reverb made you sound better?

Or perhaps when doing a professional recorded version. My stuff ain't pro, that's for sure. My room is not treated. It's the basement. Out of all the money I spend, pretty much zero goes into recording. As I mentioned, it's not my goal, my goal is to play live music. BUT!! If releasing subpar material on the net is going to do me a disservice. I'll just wait a while and redo everything professionally or spend the money and time and buy a whole bunch of crap and spend a year in the basement and ignore my family :D

Just kidding. I just need to find a happy medium between suck and pro as far as the videos are concerned. I didn't realize the timing was off either. I have a drummer that I'm going to be working with and he says the same thing, all my recordings the beats are way off. That's one of the reasons I started using the stomp box, to have something to try to keep me in time. I've never used a metronome in my life. Perhaps I should. I've thought about it but jeesh, singing, foot stomping, playing guitar, looking at words (as the song is not memorized yet) and finally looking at a metronome at the same time? Jeesh.

shawlie 03-31-2011 12:46 PM

Well, (most) everything I hear on the interent sounds better than a lot of home-made music did ten or fifteen years ago. It sounds like the man is only judging your recording quality - which is different than the music, of course. It's like someone only willing to listen to high-end guitars.

It is unfair, as not everyone has the money and time to spend on these things. Your stuff sounds fine to me - it is not studio quality sound, no. You would have to go to a studio for that - and is that really the point of making music and sharing it on the internet? It sounds plenty good enough to listen to and enjoy the songs and music.

I don't see why one comment would make you want to change everything - it sounds fine for sharing stuff with people, letting them hear your songs.

I am no expert on sound quality. It is a hobby, but I have very little money to spend on it and a small apartement with no real "music room". But the best things I bought were a ZoomH2 and Corel Video Studio (but any video program will do). It's not hard to learn - you can synch stuff by hand in less than 15 minutes (if that), trim the ends and place the recorder anywhere you want.

True, you will probably want to edit the audio in a music program. Actually something you could try already, with your camera's audio in one of the free programs. Might be worth a try and wouldn't cost anything. Just to see if you liked the sound better.

I do like using a metronome (my timing is still always off, but it helps). But you record live vocals, guitar, stomp, so that would be tricky, I can imagine.

frankhond 03-31-2011 03:01 PM

Why not just look into a quick way to up your audio, like has been suggested, get better mike, use a zoom etc. Then keep doing what you're doing. YouTube is not the place to release studio quality stuff. And good playing shows through technical flaws. I'd suggest look up some other people playing songs on YouTube. Is your audio really that much worse?

Finally the most important thing is to be able to record when in the flow, not twiddling with gear. So your basic idea is good. No disservice.

knuckle 03-31-2011 03:36 PM

Thanks Hoss, I'll look into getting at least a zoom and a 1/2 decent mic and perhaps some wall treatment.

Was thinking of this stuff. Seems the same as the acoustic stuff, not as thick, but put the word music or studio in front of it and they think they have the right to charge 500% more.

Seems like a lot of work and money even to do that. I'll try the zoom first and see what happens.

Doug Young 03-31-2011 03:44 PM


Originally Posted by knuckle (Post 2567220)
Was thinking of this stuff. Seems the same as the acoustic stuff, not as thick, but put the word music or studio in front of it and they think they have the right to charge 500% more.

Don't waste your money. Do some research, foam, egg crates, etc aren't going to do it. This might get you started:

knuckle 03-31-2011 03:49 PM

Thanks Don. Perhaps I'll save my money to record in the studio when I'm ready.

Unreal the prices they charge for this stuff.

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