Least favorite thing (pet peeves) about recording.

Discussion in 'Recording In Progress' started by burntfrijoles, Jul 28, 2019.

  1. burntfrijoles

    burntfrijoles Poster Extraordinaire

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    I have some recording to do later today. I am ready. I have rehearsed the tunes. I have a decent drum track (EZ Drummer) and a rough (crude) guide track. Now comes the hard part: Setting up the mic for the acoustic. It's not just positioning the mic etc, it's actually setting up the space, arranging other gear etc. It's just a nuisance and a general PIA to me. I loathe the trial and error of positioning the mic(s), setting the input level etc. It's actually the biggest impediment to doing more recording. I guess I'm lazy.
    You would have thought by now I would have the workflow down pat but it's always a struggle.

    Next on my list would be the "Do Over Syndrome". It's the classic "perfect is the enemy of good". This is particularly true after I think I'm happy with the overall take but finding some little niggle to obsess over.
     
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  2. drumtime

    drumtime Tele-Meister

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    I hear ya. I hate that stuff too.The best thing is if you can have your space set up permanently. Turn on the power and go. That eliminates a bunch of hassle. Not possible for everyone, I know.

    I play every week with a "band." We need a decent recording to get gigs. The band member whose space we use has at least 5 methods of recording in his space, which is a dedicated music room. Multi track, stereo, etc. His OCD requires that everything be "put away,"
    which means that none of the recorders are accessible without unpacking everything, running cables, setting levels. Every time.

    It's always the same musicians, same instruments, etc. The room is not used for anything else during the week between sessions. But we never get a recording because it's too hard to set up, not to mention learning the equipment, which he also finds too difficult.

    Did I mention that he's also retired, and home all day before we get there?
     
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  3. Splodgeness

    Splodgeness TDPRI Member

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    I too kinda struggle with the need to be both recording engineer and muscian. My music room isn't particularly large (understatement!) and it gets crowded if I leave the mic stand for recording acoustic guitars etc oiut in the middle of the room. I also have a DIY vocal "booth" made up from thin duvets that I suspend from a frame hanging from the ceiling and rigging that ahead of recording vocals is something of a chore.

    Having got everything in place though, getting levels set I now consider part of the warming up process, whether it's guitar or vocal work so by the time i'm ready for a take (or 2 or 3 or 4.....) my fingers/vocal chords etc are ready to go....
     
  4. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    For me it's the software. I've never been overly picky about mic placement or eq or anything - it seems like "the magic" is as much random chance as any kind of skill. But I hate using the vastly, immensely overcomplicated software out there for me. ASIO drivers, latency issues, yadda yadda. I think I'm going to buy a standalone 8 track recorder, honestly, despite the cost and disadvantages, because of how much I hate having a computer to deal with while recording.
     
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  5. hemingway

    hemingway Poster Extraordinaire

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    I hate that the answer to most production/mixing problems is to turn the guitars down.

    I spend time getting great guitar sounds . . . then mixing them to a whisper so you can hear my stupid lousy vocals.

    Still, it's the same on every record you've ever heard: the guitars are a lot quieter than you think. Your imagination does the rest.
     
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  6. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    For me it is the tired ears. I set aside a good chunk of time for recording, but at some point (usually twice as much time as I thought I'd spend that day), my ears and brain seem to have concentrated too much, too long and basically achieving nothing at that point.
     
  7. burntfrijoles

    burntfrijoles Poster Extraordinaire

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    Ear fatigue is real. I think it comes from wanting to being tenacious about getting it all down or getting the right mix. Fresh ears are crucial to getting the mix right but, as i stated before, you can always find something to nitpick.
     
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  8. woodman

    woodman Grand Wazoo @ The Woodshed Ad Free Member

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    My least favorite thing about recording is Being Old — worn-out ears, arthritic hands, neuropathic feet (I prefer to play standing up), brain not as locked in as it once was, limited stamina. So I'm forced to resort to trickery I've accumulated over the years! :D
     
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  9. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

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    The thing I hate about recording is the challenge of having it sound fresh and spontaneous. Our band sounds at its best when we are playing live and are in the groove. It is hard to reproduce that feeling when crammed into a studio staring at the walls. Also, who cares if there's a "clam" here or there in a live performance. But in a recording any wrong note really just sit there like a big turd.

    I really respect the artists that focused more on making albums-- that was their statement. Steely Dan is an example of the pinnacle of that approach. Beach Boys, too. That's not me....but I will say that I have learned some tricks to having our band sound much better in a recording. We track everyone live, together, but with our outputs reasonably isolated with minimal bleed. We avoid overdubs by playing it right with no mistakes. If there's a single tiny flub that is really grating we might do a quick punch-in/punch-out overdub but we really try to minimize that. We go very light on all of the wonderful effects and studio magic. Just basic EQ/pan/mixing and light compression, maybe a touch of reverb and delay here and there, and that's about it. We don't let the perfect be the the enemy of the good. I'd rather hear a great performance recorded fairly well than a mediocre performance recorded perfectly. As was noted, our brains tend to fill in the blanks, anyway.
     
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  10. Martin R

    Martin R Friend of Leo's

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    As the OP referenced, the worst thing about home recording is you can always do another take.
     
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  11. Chud

    Chud Poster Extraordinaire

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    My pet peeve is that I don't have enough consistent time available to do it, and I almost have to completely relearn my set up and routing every time I start a new project, or go back to an existing one.
     
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  12. strat a various

    strat a various Friend of Leo's

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    Being a good recording engineer is a skill, and it's as difficult as being a musician. Without proper training, a self-taught engineer has a tough path. What little I learned about being a good engineer I learned playing sessions in L.A. and Burbank studios where quite a few hits were recorded. Those guys are wizards, and they make it look easy. It's not easy.
     
  13. woodman

    woodman Grand Wazoo @ The Woodshed Ad Free Member

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    Brother, you hit the nail right on the head.
     
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  14. SolidSteak

    SolidSteak Friend of Leo's

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    Least favorite thing about amateur recording:

    "Oh hey! That was AWESOME! We NAILED it! Let's do it like that again only I'll push record this time..."

    :eek::eek::eek::eek::eek::eek::eek::eek::cry::cry::cry::cry::cry:
     
  15. blowtorch

    blowtorch Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Not sounding like Elvis when I sing and Link when I play
     
  16. Ben Harmless

    Ben Harmless Friend of Leo's

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    Two:

    First, the room. Great rooms are wonderful. Interesting rooms are cool. Anything else is just in the way. My rooms are all in the way unless I angle thing upside down and diagonally. This is why I don't spend a lot of money on recording toys. If I want a good sounding studio, I've got a friend with one.

    Second, the rules. I like to break them, but there are so many things out there that are unexplored because of how we learn to do things, whether we go to school for it or just read internet forums. We narrow our scope and wind up never thinking about plugging one thing into a different thing because it wasn't designed with that specific thing in mind. I do okay in this regard, but there are just so many options out there. Hell, I haven't even tried all the plugins that come with Reaper. I feel like some of the coolest recordings I've heard were just a great song recorded with broken stuff in the wrong room, and I want to do that, too!
     
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  17. EsquireOK

    EsquireOK Friend of Leo's

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    Overengineering/overcomplicating things that are very simple and straightforward.

    Taking a long time in the studio.

    Not recording at least a basic whole-band live take as your foundation for multi-tracking. I.e. building a song track by track or a few tracks at a time. Bands play together with natural rhythmic shifts, pushes and pulls, etc. That needs to be captured as the foundation for building the song in the studio, or else syncing rhythm and feel can be near impossible to get perfect.

    I have seen friends take a year to record an album of quite uncomplicated songs...and the result is still ****. All that effort, and they still don't even sound rhythmically locked with each other...because they approached everything as an "assembly" of individual parts, rather than as an organic mesh. Meantime, as just one example, Black Sabbath goes in and largely knocks out their first (and best) album in a day. You have to actually be tight, prepared, and GOOD to go in and do it right and do it fast...and you shouldn't overcomplicate the process. If you are taking forever to record, you quite simply aren't a tight or prepared band IMO.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2019
  18. SixStringSlinger

    SixStringSlinger Friend of Leo's

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    Whenever I record (even just putting an idea onto my phone in case I forget), I hate how I tense up, often to the detriment of the recording (which, again, is often just the equivalent of jotting down a note). I'm comfortable playing with other musicians and (to a point) a non-musician audience (really, just people hanging around while I and others play). But once I tap "Record" I have to put effort into relaxing.
     
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  19. Bergy

    Bergy Tele-Holic

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    I rarely enjoy studio time. Often the groups aren't prepared to play with studio precision. I am always really concerned about going into a recording project with musicians who says things like "I don't like to listen to myself in recordings..."

    Studio environments are usually quite sterile and the whole situation is often much less private than people expect or prefer. A control room full of engineers and band members telling you to do another take gets progressively grimmer with each take. Time is money. Whole groups can get demoralized pretty quickly. We were just watching the video to the studio version of "In the Summertime" by Mungo Jerry, and my wife mentioned that the band has the unmistakable look of people being demoralized in a studio. It is a different kind of stress than playing live.

    I don't like having to put an amp in an iso-cab. I don't like having to wear big ol' studio headphones with 2 miles of curly-Q cables running out of it. I don't like being surrounded by expensive gear that can immediately sear the sound of a fly farting into your neurology. It always feels like I'm trying to make music on the moon or something. I tolerate recording when I have to.
     
  20. popthree

    popthree Poster Extraordinaire

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    i feel like i have almost zero chance of making a decent recording because my high freq hearing is totally shot and has been for a long time. it's hard to learn to mix when you can't hear.
     
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