Show 177 – Ryan tries REAPER; Recording Strategies; and more!

This week Ryan shares his first experiences with the REAPER, and we chat with Björgvin Benediktsson about his new book Recording Strategies.
Our guest this week is Björgvin Benediktsson.

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14 thoughts on “Show 177 – Ryan tries REAPER; Recording Strategies; and more!

  1. Funny to hear a big block of silence after the comments section, before Ryan’s segment, and then hear how great non-realtime render is. “I’ve already listened to it twice by then”.
    Stay on your toes, Jon!
    Great show, though. I’m not meaning to pick on you. It really was a funny, but good example of the pitfalls of using that feature. Wish pro tools had it for the times when I’d want to use it. But that won’t be possible until the rtas and TDM are fully switched over to aax.
    Thanks guys!

  2. I know I should be writing this on the reaper forums instead of here but….

    One thing I’d like a lot would be if during install reaper would ask you what DAW you’re coming from and give you options of “garage band, logic, sonar, protools, [more DAWs], none” then do a bit of auto configuring the preferences to make it more like where you came from.

    I know when I switched from my pirated Logic to my legal copy of reaper (I know, I’m a bad person or something) it took a while before things started making sense. Now I’m all in and this feels like the “right way” but it did take a little time.

    GSAA,
    Sven

  3. Great show guys, the bit between the comments and the Reaper feature was the best and most insightful I think your show has ever been. Thanks. :+)

    I still haven’t tried Reaper, maybe if someone offers me £100 to look at it I’ll give it a fling, but I thought it was unfair to pick out things like Reaper doing fades in realtime rather than bouncing down as an advantage over Pro Tools, when PT 10 does this too. You could also do multiple simultaneous bounces in PT akin to the Batch processing if you just set it up in routing. In fact I often do this for vocal up/downs and stems all at once.

    Finally, since Ryan says he’d like a DAW that looks awesome but sounds awful and never works, he needs to go old school. We used to have a Focusrite console at Metropolis, which looked incredible, but would be broken more often than it was working. Must admit it did sound pretty good too, on the few occasions you managed to get sound running through it.

    Mike

  4. So my personal cheapskate option for VCC has been using a Line 6 TonePort UX2 which has preamp models of Neve, API, Avalon, SSL, and some sort of LOFI type deal… I bought mine used and I can actually use mine as a dongle for the plugins it comes with, and track through my Mackie Onyx firewire mixer. The sounds are pretty good and not only do you get the overall flavor of each brand of preamp… You also get the EQ stage.

    If you are really pressed for cash Airwindows has AU plugins for free that work really well. Channel is a great FREE plugin that works with Reaper or any other AU host and is free. It is a simple one fader GUI free plug that has option for API SSL and Neve. It sounds really great. I sometimes use it over the Line 6 even.

    Do these plugs sound as good as the real thing? I don’t know… They do make a pleasing sound though.

  5. GSAA,

    i really wish i would have found yall and listened to the newer shows before i took the protools plunge. Its treating me pretty good so far, but reaper really sounds like it more along my tastes. I think imma stick with protools till i finish my project but i will prolly start snooping around cockos after that.

    RTC

  6. Couple of quick comments:

    RE: Slate VCC. while the Slate VCC is a great product, I have to put in a plug for Sonar. The Pro Channel in expanded is a modular system that can be set up as an SSL console or a vintage Neve type console with appropriate EQ, channel compression, and buss compression. It basically lets you model either console or, because it is modular, it can be configured as a hybrid combination. Because Pro Channel is native 64bit, it uses little CPU and has excellent sound. It also has some great options such as the Soft tube bundle which can be loaded as Pro Channel modules on every channel, a soft tube saturation knob, and a variety of compressors as well as an incredible LA2A emulation that is better than the TRacks version. Again, these can be set up on each track and like VCC provide some nice “glue” to meld everything together. And like VCC, there are buss specific tools. I have suggested they offer some pre amp modules for Pro Channel and hopefully they will.

    As to isolation cabinets, been meaning to write. Sorry this is a bit behind the subject. There are many pro models made by companies like Rivera and Jet City, whose iso cab was designed by Eminence. But to clarify some mis conceptions: standing wanes are not an issue because the space is so small. There are several ways to compensate for the closed nature of the box. One is to use a vent system similar to what is used for vocal booths. Another option is to include a port and stuff it with acoustistuff or something similar so it will allow air to pass but will dampen most sound waves, especially higher frequencies which are more noticeable. This is perhaps the best method. Rivera uses a labyrinth port on its iso cab. Also, remember that the you can’t just make a box. The cabinet has to be designed for the specs of the speaker used and if you provide a similar air space on the outside of the speaker you can effectively simulate a closed cabinet setup. Porting between the bulkhead can also work if the cabinet is designed as a tuned port bass reflex cabinet. Many of the resonance issues can be eliminated with proper cabinet design and any problems left can be easily eq’d. Theory might suggest iso cabinets wouldn’t work, but when proper cabinet design and porting formulas are used, they can be quite effective and with very good tone.

    One last comment: not to nitpick Jon, but 16gauge wire is very big, not very tiny. It’s like a shotgun or steel; the larger the gauge number, the smaller the size. For example,. most decent mic cables use 22awg stranded wire while cheaper cables tend to use 24awg. And when dealing with long speaker wire runs, the heavier the wire, the less inductance. Speaker wires are not shielded.

  7. I was hoping to hear a bit of a deeper segment on Reaper. I’ve been a pro tools user for several years but have been a bit short with having the money to upgrade from v8 to v10. I wasn’t necessarily looking for a new DAW but since I started listening, the alternate option has been to check.out Reaper. My main issues with PT were mainly lack of ADC and the general resource consumption of the program.

    I’ve purchased Reaper this past week and while it is taking some getting used to, I think it will be a good decision in the end. I’ll never fully abandon PT b/c if trying to get work at a studio or renting out a studio for a session,chances are Reaper won’t be the DAW available.

    I would definitely like to hear more Reaper segments but in the meantime j should be able to work through it pretty well. So far I am pleased with the customizable ability and the overall performance.

  8. Hey e.scarab, the isolation box we’re talking about is for a standalone speaker cabinet (think Marshall) or a combo amp (Fender Twin Reverb or such). What you’re talking about is a building a speaker in a box, which is something different. I decided against that route because everyone probably has their own favorite speaker cabinet they are familar with and like to use.

    • The same basic concepts apply. You can do venting to eliminate the “boxy” (no pun untended) and/or thin sound some complain of. The reality is that a good iso speaker box is the easiest way to get a good sound when you don’t want a lot of noise to bleed. My understanding is most people primarily use iso boxes when recording base(sic)/rhythm tracks or specifically when there is no space or room to isolate the guitar, etc. Generally one would go back and record any parts they insisted have “their sound” on their equipment when there is nothing else being recording.

  9. Great show guys! As a Reaper user, I thoroughly enjoy hearing people talk about it. One thing about Reaper I haven’t gotten out of any other DAW is there are so many features (little and big) that I constantly learn about and incorporate into my workflow to make it that much more streamlined. For example, I just found out Alt+Z splits an item at zero-crossing. This may be really useful for drum editing.

    Anyway, I just recorded a local band’s 4 song EP, and now I’m almost done with the mix. I am also mastering it, which I’ve never done with more than one song before. This may be one for Jon, but what would be the best way to master in Reaper (render preferences specifically)? I was thinking render the separate mixes as 48kHz 24 bit WAVs, importing them back into reaper for the mastering processing, then I’m stuck at what file type I should render to from there. From what I’ve read, 44.1kHz 16 bit WAVs seems to be the common thing to do. I don’t really know what to do about dither, noise shaping, or resample modes, so if you can shine a light on any of that I’d be grateful. We are getting the CD duplicated, so is it common for the company to convert the files anyway? Thanks again!

  10. Howdy Pardners –

    Long-time listener, 1st time caller. I’m a ProTooler of many moons. I bought & played around with Reaper about 8 months ago, based on Jon’s endorsement, and definitely saw a lot of things I liked about it – especially the resource utilization and track freezing. At the same time, I was pretty overwhelmed with all the options and tweaks available, and had difficulty finding a setup that would ease my transition from PT.

    Can you Lords of Reaping make any suggestions on a theme or setup that would help us Pro Tools Lovers learn to be Reaper Lovers? I tried using a PT8 theme I saw at the time, but I found it to be clunky and not very robust. The main barrier for me is that at this point Reaper seems better for people who can spend the time tweaking their own themes & workflows. Any help or guidance is appreciated.

    You guys rock! And I’m not going to mention anything about chickens…aw crap…nevermind…

  11. I recently completed a 16 x 18 foot deck suspended 20 feet up in the air, in the trees my backyard. Right away, I ran some power up there and threw up the house-hold hifi. The speakers are suspended up above the deck, with the only near-ish reflections being a tree canopy above and me sitting beside a cooler on the deck.
    The separation in the speakers sparkles and makes me wonder if my battle to reduce reflections in my mixing room should just be moved outdoors, weather permitting.
    I invite your comments.

    That chicken smells like fish, but I’m not touchin that.
    Jimbag.

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