Would auto-tune work for brass band?

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Bungle, Aug 29, 2010.

  1. Bungle

    Bungle Member

    With all this furore about auto-tune, I was wondering would it work for a brass band if say a soloist was out of tune for one note, could it be corrected. Or has it already been used?
     
  2. Will the Sec

    Will the Sec Active Member

  3. Leyfy

    Leyfy Active Member

    I'm sure something similar was applied to the soloists when we did a band recording a few years ago, which is why they needed to be recorded separately to the band.

    Not sure though - I think that might have been to do with cutting tracks to get the best overall performance, rather than auto-tune.
     
  4. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Short answer is that Autotune can be used to correct the pitch of any monophonic source be it vocal or instrumental.....the monophonic bit is why you'd need to record a soloist in isolation, as it'd also try and 'correct' any spill into the solo mic. Kim's also quite right that sometimes you can record a soloist in isolation so there's a chance of getting a better edit.

    More recently, Celemony have been working on Melodyne DNA which works in polyphonic mode....which may turn out to be interesting.

    Personally, I'd rather that the performers on the end of my microphones just did it right.....although I have been known to 'cheat' on occasion ;)

    edit: I forgot to say that the 'problem' with Autotune and the like is that if it's set up incorrectly or in a generic fashion it generates a boatload of artifacts.....which is why it was instantly recognisable that the X Factor had been 'tampered' with....anyone familiar with its use will have heard it.....
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2010
  5. Leyfy

    Leyfy Active Member

    Is that the posh word for that 'skip' between pitches?
     
  6. Will the Sec

    Will the Sec Active Member

    I recall a conversation with a chap who worked in a music production studio, and he said he could take Fulham's 2000 regionals performance of The Haslemere Suite, tweak individual notes, and make it into a winning performance. By all accounts, including the comically wrongly placed grunt, that would have been an achievement!
     
  7. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    I actually have had a shot of this since it's "release" to tweak pitch and tuning in band recordings but it kept on crashing my PC after it took it's time loading the file. Here's what a bit of a band recording (incl. perc.) looks like ...

    Melodyne Sample 01.jpg
     
  8. GordonH

    GordonH Member

    I must admit to having done pitch adjustment on the odd note on recordings to salvage a take which was better than another which was technically a better performance. I don't feel happy doing it though.
     
  9. STUART HAIGH

    STUART HAIGH Member

    Some judges use auto tune at contests...hence some of the wild results.
     
  10. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Sort of.

    Autotune really came into prominence when it was used as an effect of Cher's "I believe"...where the 'skip' you mention is deliberate and calculated....it's caused by setting one of the program's (or indeed hardware box's) to essentially zero....and that parameter controls how long it takes the machine to correct the vocal. Setting this parameter causes what's essentially a more natural sounding portamento so the pitch 'glides' to where it should be.

    Whenever you manipulate audio - for example by trying to change the pitch and / or speed (particularly both at once) - you introduce 'errors' in the data that can be audible...and it gets worse the more extreme the processing.
     
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  12. yoda

    yoda Member

    No autotune - No Rick Astley ;-)
     
  13. Neillyboy

    Neillyboy Member

    As a professional recording engineer and producer the auto tune is the absolute absolute last resort. The reason for this is that I use protools 8 and it has a function that I can record audio and effectively bank it. So I always ask the soloist to play the whole solo 4 times. This gives me a chance to flip through each recording and pull out the bits that need attenton and slot in that part from another take to create the ultimate performance. This saves the autotune degrading the natural sound and also gives a far more satisfactory result.
     
  14. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    What would interest me using the Celemony's Melodyne plugin is whether correcting the tuning across the score would make a performance sound sterile?
     
  15. Neillyboy

    Neillyboy Member

    Adding any plug ins or digital sound treatment to any recordings can give an unnatural sound but if you were clever enough about it you could probably blend it in well enough to make it un noticable to the untrained ear. Defo worth an experiment i suppose
     
  16. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    It seems that the DNA plugin is criticised for it's inability to cope with complex stereo files and when you are able to modify notes, the artefacts generated are noticable. Looks like it needs a lot of development yet!
     
  17. Neillyboy

    Neillyboy Member


    very true. I have yet to find an autotune that can cope with a full freq range and stereo spectrum. I have seen some engineers use melodyne with enhancers to try bring notes out without the "fake" sound. It hasnt ever produced a great result. Like I say the only way to get the "perfect" recording is taking parts from 4 different takes and take bits from each of the 4 to build the best possible recording.
     
  18. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    there are times when even comping doesn't work, though, because the performer doesn't shove the goods on tape.

    In which case, you're faced with a production dilemma....do you try and 'fix' it, or do you produce a recording which is more representative of the level of performance?
     
  19. GordonH

    GordonH Member

    One of the problems is that you end up with a composite recording that the player could never reproduce live. I am not keen on this and its one reason why I prefer some recordings that I know are flawed but "as live" compared to others which are better but composites.

    To be fair though, no recordings are straight recordings. Anything done in a studio requires some form of reverb added or it sounds too lifeless. I can't comment on brass recordings as I have never done any, but in my other musical activities I use reverb all the time in small amounts.
     
  20. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    You'll find that a lot of brass band recordings are done in inadequate spaces and need to be treated.
     
  21. GordonH

    GordonH Member

    The same for many other recordings too. I think people would be surprised to hear a raw recording prior to being sorted out with reverb, noise reduction etc.
     
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