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Ozone Elements coming soon and a question about mastering...


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#1 Mornats

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 05:15 PM

Just got word via a Time+Space newsletter that Izotope are releasing Ozone Elements on the 15th November. No word yet as to what it contains but it could be quite an affordable route into mastering.

So my question is, what's the difference between mastering and using a something like Ozone or Neutron on the master buss of your track to provide EQ and compression? I seem to be getting on ok with either Neutron or a compressor, EQ and limiter on the master buss of my tracks but this next stage of mastering eludes me completely.
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#2 Dad3353

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 05:32 PM

View PostMornats, on 11 November 2016 - 05:15 PM, said:

Just got word via a Time+Space newsletter that Izotope are releasing Ozone Elements on the 15th November. No word yet as to what it contains but it could be quite an affordable route into mastering.

So my question is, what's the difference between mastering and using a something like Ozone or Neutron on the master buss of your track to provide EQ and compression? I seem to be getting on ok with either Neutron or a compressor, EQ and limiter on the master buss of my tracks but this next stage of mastering eludes me completely.

For me, mastering is not really applicable as a concept to a single track. I use it more for giving some coherence across several tracks aimed at a similar support or target audience. When playing a CD in a car, for instance, one would not want tracks to have wildly different volume levels, even if originally recorded by different bands, or different styles. When listening to a classical selection, it would be nice if all the disk had a feeling of 'belonging' together. It involves EQ and compression (and a few other little tricks...), but nothing that can't be done with 'standard' Master track tools.
I use mastering tools, though so that my 'final product' has a 'sound' compatible with the genre I'm aiming at. Even when created months, or even years apart, I still want my stuff to have a certain 'polish' to them which enables them to be played together without clashes (well, no more than the original composition contained, anyway..! :blush: ).
In passing, I take the announced Nectar Elements to be specifically aimed at treating vocals, rather than whole finished tracks. Is there something else I've missed..? :unsure:
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#3 lowdown

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 06:23 PM

I am confused.
What's been announced?
Ozone Elements? Or Nector Elements?
:)

It might be worth a (long) read in the link below.
It's about EBU Loudness and Leveling standards.
But then again, after that 'B' thing, you might want to ignore EBU standards,
just do it the British way and crash everything up to 0db and destroy all Dynamics.
I am sure Nigel will pat you on the back....:)

https://tech.ebu.ch/...kofski_klar.pdf

Edited by lowdown, 11 November 2016 - 09:38 PM.

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#4 Dad3353

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 07:43 PM

Well, I started to read the pdf linked-to above and, just as I wa ...... Zzzzzzz.....

:sleep:
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#5 Mornats

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 08:04 PM

Ozone Elements has been announced but no info page on it yet, it was just in the T+S newsletter. Nectar Elements has been out for a while now. I'll take a squizz at that PDF, cheers. Oh, and I'm not one to squeeze a track to death with loudness :) I do like a bit of dynamic range.
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  • Other basses: Yamaha TRBX 504, Squier modified VM Jazz: KiOgon wiring loom and Entwistle JBXN pickups
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#6 lowdown

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 10:57 PM

View PostMornats, on 11 November 2016 - 08:04 PM, said:

Oh, and I'm not one to squeeze a track to death with loudness :) I do like a bit of dynamic range.

Pull the other one. :)
http://vi-control.ne...10#post-4012851
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#7 Dad3353

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 11:00 PM

:lol:
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#8 Mornats

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 11:06 PM

Haha stalker :P

That was my latest track for the comp challenge. The first two thirds are quiet and the last bit loud and I was having trouble with the last bit clipping over the limiter hence the post on VI control :)
  • Main bass: Fender Standard Precision (MIM)
  • Other basses: Yamaha TRBX 504, Squier modified VM Jazz: KiOgon wiring loom and Entwistle JBXN pickups
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Soundcloud: www.soundcloud.com/mornats.
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#9 lowdown

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 08:08 AM

View PostMornats, on 11 November 2016 - 11:06 PM, said:

Haha stalker :P

That was my latest track for the comp challenge. The first two thirds are quiet and the last bit loud and I was having trouble with the last bit clipping over the limiter hence the post on VI control :)

No worries, I was just jesting.
I have been being following the threads over there on 'Neutron'.
To be honest, the Jury is still out for me on that.

Ozone Elements maybe would interest me, but I am not prepared to pay the full shebang
for the full version. I have the FabFilter Pro bundle and think the Vst's sound great so I am not sure
if 'Ozone' is going to give me anything more.
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#10 Mornats

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 01:03 PM

The killer features in Neutron are the EQ learn feature which gives you a starting point for frequencies that may need attention, the dynamic EQ that can be side-chained and the masking feature that lets you compare EQ clashes between two tracks that have Neutron on. This last feature has really helped me separate choirs from strings so you can hear both clearly. A lot of people on VI Control still prefer FabFilter though.

I'm not keen on the compressor in Neutron as I'm getting good results from NI's Solid Bus Comp and tend to favour that and Supercharger GT. I'm also playing more with their VC range of compressors. The exciter in Neutron is nice but it's the exciter I have so I can't compare it. Transient shaper is also nice for adding sharp impact to drums. And as already shown, I can't figure out the limiter at all lol :P
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#11 lowdown

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 01:08 PM

View PostMornats, on 12 November 2016 - 01:03 PM, said:

The killer features in Neutron are the EQ learn feature which gives you a starting point for frequencies that may need attention, the dynamic EQ that can be side-chained and the masking feature that lets you compare EQ clashes between two tracks that have Neutron on. This last feature has really helped me separate choirs from strings so you can hear both clearly. A lot of people on VI Control still prefer FabFilter though.

I'm not keen on the compressor in Neutron as I'm getting good results from NI's Solid Bus Comp and tend to favour that and Supercharger GT. I'm also playing more with their VC range of compressors. The exciter in Neutron is nice but it's the exciter I have so I can't compare it. Transient shaper is also nice for adding sharp impact to drums. And as already shown, I can't figure out the limiter at all lol :P

Maybe I should give it more time and dig deeper. I agree about the Comp, not keen on it.
But hey, others are getting the best out of it, so it does have plenty going for it.
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#12 Mornats

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Posted 15 November 2016 - 05:52 PM

Whilst there's nothing on the IZotope website about Ozone Elements TIme+Space have it on their site and have a walkthrough video:



To be honest I'm underwhelmed. For just under £80 you get a bunch of presets and a couple of sliders for the amount of EQ or dynamics to apply. That looks far too basic for the money to be honest. Ozone 7 is on sale for £140 which seems far better value. I think I'll give it a miss.
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  • Other basses: Yamaha TRBX 504, Squier modified VM Jazz: KiOgon wiring loom and Entwistle JBXN pickups
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#13 Mornats

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Posted 11 August 2017 - 04:32 PM

Ozone Elements is currently around £22 ($29 on the Izotope website - some error on Time and Space where the discount isn't showing at the time I posted this).

For that price it's possibly worth it, although I'm still confused about the difference between putting Neutron on the master bus vs. Ozone. Reading back up on Douglas' point above about using mastering to make a bunch of tracks sound like they belong together is how I understand the basic principle of mastering but I tend to try and match my tracks with my older ones using Neutron anyway. I would guess that you'd have to use the same Ozone preset on all of your songs to get them matching which would mean I'd end up only using one preset.

I tried the demo of Ozone Elements but it has no presets (which is the whole point of the elements version...) so it only affects the volume which doesn't paint a picture of what it can do.
  • Main bass: Fender Standard Precision (MIM)
  • Other basses: Yamaha TRBX 504, Squier modified VM Jazz: KiOgon wiring loom and Entwistle JBXN pickups
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Soundcloud: www.soundcloud.com/mornats.
Feedback: http://basschat.co.u...ck-for-mornats/

#14 Mornats

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Posted 14 August 2017 - 07:37 PM

My mistake with the presets, they went into the c:\documents\blah folder but I've moved my documents to a different drive. I ended up buying it partly as a (hopefully) cheap upgrade path to Ozone 7 in the future but also because the £22 price point is bang on.

So I tried it on a couple of tracks after removing the limiter and compressors from Neutron on the master bus and I'm actually quite impressed. Selecting just the "add brightness" preset brings a lot out of the track and just polishes it up nicely. I'll play with this for a while and may consider the upgrade to Ozone 7 off the back of how good it's sounding now. Or maybe stick with elements until I know what I'm doing...

To summarise, the addition of Neutron and now Ozone Elements has brought my mixes up into quite a new level compared to my earlier stuff. Maybe I'm learning more as I go but these two are certainly helping a lot.
  • Main bass: Fender Standard Precision (MIM)
  • Other basses: Yamaha TRBX 504, Squier modified VM Jazz: KiOgon wiring loom and Entwistle JBXN pickups
  • MarkBass CMD 121P
Soundcloud: www.soundcloud.com/mornats.
Feedback: http://basschat.co.u...ck-for-mornats/

#15 Dad3353

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Posted 14 August 2017 - 08:17 PM

For the anecdote...
Several years ago now we played a gig for a friend's village fête, in their modern village hall. Our sound man had set up recording from the console to a stereo disk; we were very pleased. The gig went off very well; we played our usual pretty good standard, so we were more than keen to listen back to the disk. Horror..! A mistake in the setting up had produced a very mushy (a technical term...), buried rendering; difficult for us to even recognise what song was what..! Darn it, a good opportunity wasted, or so we thought.
Back home, our thinking was along the lines of 'we've nothing to lose'; we transferred to our DAW and gave the whole sorry track a dose of Ozone. Goodness knows how that stuff works, but the result was as good a take as we could have hoped for initially; we could even hear (all too clearly..!) the flubs (another technical term...) made on the bass intro to Karma Police. Nothing else needed much at all, just cutting up into bite-sized separate songs for commodity. It's now our pride and joy, being our first 'live' recording.
I suspect that it's linked to witchcraft, or at the very least voodoo, to get such a result from the murky original we fed into it. It was worth the night spent on a dark hilltop beheading chickens. :blush:
I'll see if I can dig up the tracks for comparison, all these years later... Now then, where did I put those shellac disks..? Hmm... :)

Edited by Dad3353, 14 August 2017 - 08:17 PM.

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#16 Mornats

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Posted 14 August 2017 - 08:29 PM

Wow, that's quite a nice endorsement for Ozone! I agree, it's magic what goes on in there. Click a preset and boof, nice master. No messing really. Even if I only ever use one preset on everything I reckon it's worth the £22.
  • Main bass: Fender Standard Precision (MIM)
  • Other basses: Yamaha TRBX 504, Squier modified VM Jazz: KiOgon wiring loom and Entwistle JBXN pickups
  • MarkBass CMD 121P
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#17 plumbob

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 04:15 PM

I've been evaluating this

https://www.sonarworks.com/headphones

on the free 21 day trial , luckily I had probably the cheapest headphones on the profile list Sennheiser HD 201

I've got to say so far I am really impressed !

I know its not best to mix on headphones , but I'm never gonna make the bedroom a flat response , so as a reference tool i think its great.

I have been amazed at how much better the flat profile allows me to have a standard to work to , and when i have bounced a mix it is a lot clearer, even when i have played it on cheap hi fi

Probably gonna end up getting it , worth trying the demo and seeing how much of a curve response manufactures have put on things !!!

#18 Dad3353

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 04:29 PM

My 'phones are too cheap to be worth listing; I've taken a screenshot of the curve of the closest relative (Superlux 681...) which I'll try to emulate, and see if it sounds better to me. Too expensive for me, of course, but if I can get an approximation, it may improve things a little for me. The comparison from the 'on-line' sample was pretty effective.
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#19 Mornats

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 04:57 PM

I've been considering Sonarworks and may possibly have a discount offer as they email me weekly after I signed up for the trial!

I recently got an external USB DAC for my phone as the internal one is rubbish and it has a flat response eq add-on so I can hear the difference it makes on that.
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#20 plumbob

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 05:48 PM

If I'm understanding things right , your usb DAC may give a flat response , but the headphones you plug into it will then impose its own curve on top there by not giving you a reference flat response.

I think what Sonarworks does is, they sample test the frequency response of your specific headphones , you can send them in to be tested or buy a calibrated package from them or use there average profile . Then the software flattens those frequencies to produce a studio reference flat response , so we should all be singing from the same hymn sheet so to speak irrespective of what headphones we each individually have !

I think thats right !

#21 Mornats

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 07:05 PM

The plugin for my USB audio player app is similar to Sonarworks and has profiles for loads of headphones including mine. So I've heard a flat response from mine and can see the benefit :)
  • Main bass: Fender Standard Precision (MIM)
  • Other basses: Yamaha TRBX 504, Squier modified VM Jazz: KiOgon wiring loom and Entwistle JBXN pickups
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#22 Mornats

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 05:37 PM

I've been trying Ozone Elements on some of my tracks and I'm really liking it.

I read this article on their blog which describes what some of their presets are doing - https://www.izotope....-elements.html. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem like they've matched the volumes of the before and after and the "after" snippets in their videos are louder and naturally sound a bit better anyway. It's a shame as I've noticed a real improvement!

So, I did my own example. This is a track that I spent weeks mixing and tweaking and is one of my favourites in terms of the final mix. I applied the Punchy and Clear preset to it with the EQ slider at 60% and and tweaked the maximiser to -8.4db to get the output to around -14.5 LUFs (-14 is what Soundcloud converts music too and is commercially loud but not mashed so you can keep dynamics). It's actually a little quieter than the original but I still have a little tweaking to do.

I read what the preset was doing and applied a few of those tweaks to the instance of Neutron on those particular instrument tracks, notably the 100hz boost for punch and 300hz dip for clarity (that 300hz dip is magic) so I've essentially taken what the preset did to the entire mix and applied the same principles to other parts of the track so this is not entirely that preset at work. I tweaked the cellos and the percussion only though.

Here's the before, as a 24bit/44.1khz wav: https://www.dropbox....%20Old.wav?dl=0

Here's the after, again as a 24bit/44.1khz wav: https://www.dropbox....shadow.wav?dl=0

I think it's an improvement. Those cellos are no longer a dull background tone but are much clearer and the whole thing opens up.

So now I'm a little torn between the simplicity and effectiveness of Elements vs. paying for the upgrade and possibly having too many options available that will make it easy to mess things up.
  • Main bass: Fender Standard Precision (MIM)
  • Other basses: Yamaha TRBX 504, Squier modified VM Jazz: KiOgon wiring loom and Entwistle JBXN pickups
  • MarkBass CMD 121P
Soundcloud: www.soundcloud.com/mornats.
Feedback: http://basschat.co.u...ck-for-mornats/





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