How to do sample-/track-specific adjustments POST- bus processing?
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Old 17-06-2017, 11:42 AM   #1
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How to do sample-/track-specific adjustments POST- bus processing?

This is a bit vague question, because there are many approaches to this.
But still wanted to hear a bit of opinions.

When creating very processed drums, then how do you acquire control back over individual drum sounds, even if you have applied bus processing. Of course I can reach for the individual tracks going in to the bus, but the problem is that I would actually want to edit the sounds POST- bus processing. For example because the bus processing gave the snare nice tape distortion, but also made it a bit too dark so one would want to EQ the highs a bit, but only on the snare track.

So how to go about this?

Should I record the bus and then try to slice out the samples in order to separate them back to individual tracks?

The problem with bus processing is that if one attempts to e.g. record track individually through the bus, then the bus will of course behave differently than with the full mix going in. I.e. one cannot record e.g. the same bd_track01 that is in the full bus mix by just soloing and recording bd_track01.

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Old 17-06-2017, 12:17 PM   #2
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Re: How to do sample-/track-specific adjustments POST- bus processing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by soundmodel View Post
This is a bit vague question, because there are many approaches to this.
But still wanted to hear a bit of opinions.

When creating very processed drums, then how do you acquire control back over individual drum sounds, even if you have applied bus processing. Of course I can reach for the individual tracks going in to the bus, but the problem is that I would actually want to edit the sounds POST- bus processing. For example because the bus processing gave the snare nice tape distortion, but also made it a bit too dark so one would want to EQ the highs a bit, but only on the snare track.

So how to go about this?

Should I record the bus and then try to slice out the samples in order to separate them back to individual tracks?

The problem with bus processing is that if one attempts to e.g. record track individually through the bus, then the bus will of course behave differently than with the full mix going in. I.e. one cannot record e.g. the same bd_track01 that is in the full bus mix by just soloing and recording bd_track01.
I'd try to avoid getting into this situation, but if it's a must, either parallel processing, dynamic EQ (with sidechaining to make the boost occur only when the snare hits), or bouncing to audio and slicing just like you said.

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Old 17-06-2017, 12:20 PM   #3
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Re: How to do sample-/track-specific adjustments POST- bus processing?

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Originally Posted by -Agu- View Post
I'd try to avoid getting into this situation, but if it's a must, either parallel processing, dynamic EQ (with sidechaining to make the boost occur only when the snare hits), or bouncing to audio and slicing just like you said.
Of course I would avoid it if there was a reason to.

But in this case I'm using the bus processing and the supposed latter processing as a desired effect.

Because I want a Lo-Fi overall sound, but would like to make some adjustments after the bus processing in order to gain back some clarity.
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Old 17-06-2017, 12:24 PM   #4
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Re: How to do sample-/track-specific adjustments POST- bus processing?

Another option might be try create more sophisticated bus processing.

E.g. rather than driving all the tracks to the bus, then one could split the tracks in two and process the other through the bus and add it to the original track. This way one can create the final sound by processing unprocessed and processed version of the same track. Particularly, one might be able to gain the lost clarity back by adding it from the unprocessed track.
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Old 18-06-2017, 09:41 PM   #5
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Re: How to do sample-/track-specific adjustments POST- bus processing?

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Originally Posted by soundmodel View Post
Another option might be try create more sophisticated bus processing.
That sounds good, targeted bus processing, maybe in combination with frequency-specific and general parallel processing, is always a good idea. Some general options:

- grouping different layers of samples or instruments (kick drums vs snares and claps vs hihats or something like that): this makes a lot of sense for a lot of material. many drum samplers allow to send drum samples or layers to different tracks for separate processing, if the drum sampler doesn't allow for it, you can always duplicate it and mute respective channels

- slicing is an option, but you still would have some stuff layered in most loops... I mostly use this for beat restructuring and glitching but not for changing the sounds of individual sample or instrument layers

- splitting frequency bands (low/mid/high is the most common way): often used for bass processing and mastering, but also great for beats. In some DAWs you can build your own frequency splitter (for example, with audio effect racks and multiband comp in Live), or you can use frequency-specific effects such as Shaperbox or Saturn. This way, you can also edit finished drumloops from old projects or sample packs.

- another option to modify beats heavily after bus processing is splitting between transient and tonal parts. The VST effect Fission lets you process transients and tonal parts separately - this might not help in every case, but I found it very useful for editing stuff I already bus processed without having to go back to earlier project versions - also very flexible when combined in a frequency splitter rack... There are some other plugins like this, but I think most others are mostly for EQing, Fission offers some other effects you can put on transients and/or tonal parts.

- some programs or plugins allow for separation of different samples or instruments in an audio file or track (something like Regroover, or Spectrallayers and RX might do the job if you already have something like that) - this does not necessarily make a lot of sense if you still have the MIDI tracks for your drumloops, since it's a more complicated procedure compared to just changing the bus processing ^^

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