Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

All about the tools and techniques involved in capturing sound, in the studio or on location.

Moderator: Moderators

Re: Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

Post by tacitus »

There are plenty of orchestras that can do a live concert of near-CD standard; plenty that can’t, too. Solo players/singers are usually a lot more critical.

That said, it’s been a while since my pinnacle of “almost semi-professional”, so I’m most likely going to be recording good amateur groups playing live. If I can edit out or ameliorate major bangs and clattering, and get a nice room sound with good balance, there should be a worthwhile advance on phone recordings (or the last bang will be me shooting myself!).

Fortunately, at my age I have experienced the things you mention, Arpangel, and I’m not likely to be working with 150-take musicians anytime soon.

When I was recording regularly in the early 2000s I did do actual sessions where that sort of thing might happen. In a not very wonderful school hall we talked about reverb. The conductor wasn’t sure, so we looked through a catalogue of reverbs from what appeared to be mainly all-wood Scandi spaces. By the third picture he’d chosen the one he wanted.

Another time a hi-fi purist MD was unhappy with a take of Padstow Lifeboat. Despite his typically brisk tempo already being some way ahead of Arnold’s own, we sped it up a fraction. OK, it sounded a lot tighter, but I’m surprised he didn’t veto it on sound quality.

Meanwhile, in the curious world of live organ recordings I was getting organists (some very picky about sound quality) raving about the “magic” I was performing; largely reducing gaps where they were pulling stops and tidying up extraneous noises. It didn’t hurt having a pair of the original Rode NT2s up on a huge stand. How could they sound bad? Verily, I say unto you, this church’s resonance doth cover better than Dulux.

Not that I ever do less than my best, but it often helps to make things look nice, too. I always used CD-text for recital discs. I can’t remember when I last saw any, but I figured if a soloist ever saw their name coming up on the CD player they’d feel a bit more positive. Sounds dreadfully old-fashioned now!
tacitus
Frequent Poster
Posts: 904 Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2008 12:00 am

Re: Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

Post by Arpangel »

Tacitus, sounds like you’re out there doing it, which is more than I can say for myself these days, I haven’t done any live acoustic recording of other people for many years, only my own piano/marimba duo.
I love organ music, and recording, it can be a tricky thing to record, but if you’ve got a great player, and an acoustic, that suits the music, you’re 99% there.
I used to get dragged around by the venerable Mike Skeet, classical engineer and all-round eccentric, what little knowledge I now have I learnt from him, a very inspiring man, he was a professional, in every sense of the word, and was only concerned with what he could hear, and he always spent money where it mattered, good monitors, excellent microphones, always the best, a very large collection, and the best recorders, he wasn’t interested in cables or fancy flight cases, he always used the basics, often turning up with stuff in old suitcases, wonderful.
He was a keen motorcyclist and he loved the challenge of being able to do a classical session with nothing more than he could carry on his motorbike, I met him at gigs many times like this, nothing more than a couple of mic's, folding stands, his little preamp, Sound Devices recorder and a pair of phones!
User avatar
Arpangel
Jedi Poster
Posts: 12673 Joined: Sat Jul 12, 2003 12:00 am
That’s another thing

Re: Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

Post by tacitus »

Most churches I ever recorded the organ in have somebody hanging around who knows where the organ sounds best. Often the priest, years ago, nowadays not so much, but they come out of the woodwork for recitals. I mostly found with a spaced omni pair on a tall stand I did pretty well starting at their golden spot and moving in to get the direct/reverb balance better.

I’ve only just started assembling the gear for location recording again. Hope to do a concert in about 10 days. Last time I recorded on location I was still taking a DAT machine, though at the last few only as a backup. Should be interesting, anyway.
tacitus
Frequent Poster
Posts: 904 Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2008 12:00 am

Re: Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

Post by sonics »

tacitus wrote: Sun Sep 25, 2022 10:37 pm Well, after some soul-searching I came to an unexpected conclusion; I’m going to stick with Audacity until I absolutely need something more powerful/precisely configured or whatever.

Whilst I understand your decision, I would urge you to use better software than Audacity. It really is worth spending a little money for a decent DAW.
sonics
Frequent Poster
Posts: 749 Joined: Wed Jul 16, 2003 12:00 am Location: Canada
 

Re: Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

Post by blinddrew »

Or cakewalk is completely free.
User avatar
blinddrew
Jedi Poster
Posts: 21047 Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2015 12:00 am Location: York
Ignore the post count, I have no idea what I'm doing...

Re: Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

Post by Sam Spoons »

And, While Reaper isn't, it is cheap and excellent (and it works on a Mac).
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 17921 Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 12:00 am Location: Manchester UK
Your karma has run over my dogma

Re: Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

Post by blinddrew »

Good shout. I keep forgetting that Cakewalk doesn't work on those funny devices... ;)
User avatar
blinddrew
Jedi Poster
Posts: 21047 Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2015 12:00 am Location: York
Ignore the post count, I have no idea what I'm doing...

Re: Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

Post by Sam Spoons »

:bouncy::bouncy::bouncy: I was a latecomer to the world of 'funny devices' (and for a long time I was a heavyweight detractor too) but, while they are far from perfect, the work for me.
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 17921 Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 12:00 am Location: Manchester UK
Your karma has run over my dogma

Re: Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

Post by tacitus »

I appreciate all the concern, and I know it’s a bit like abseiling with garden twine. But, I’m lined up to record a concert in 10 days and I’m running through everything and doing trials as far as possible to ease my way.

I haven’t totally rejected the idea of upgrading, but we’re talking about limited editing of live events at the moment and I’ll know soon enough if I run into limitations I can’t get round. And it’s not that you’ve all said to get the same thing that’s undoubtedly better than Audacity.

As it happens, I’m up to record a gig by a sax group I know several members of, on the understanding this is not for release, though they’re welcome to anything I produce. It might not even happen if any if them decide they don’t want to be recorded, an issue which is ongoing.

If all goes well, I’ll have some files to work on. I might then have a Road to Damascus moment and work out what the hell I need. Right now, I’m focusing on getting something recorded. Whatever extras I need later, I’ll get later. And, while I’m using those funny computers from Apple, it won’t be the end of the world if I end up with a PC to run it on.

Unfortunately, I don’t even have any of my old DAWs available or I’d probably have dusted one of those off. I’ll let you know how it goes. If in fact it does go …
tacitus
Frequent Poster
Posts: 904 Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2008 12:00 am

Re: Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

Post by Arpangel »

Best of luck! hope it goes well.
Just a reminder, Reaper is free to try and if you like it you can pay for it.
I can’t see any point in paying more, it’s a very good program.
User avatar
Arpangel
Jedi Poster
Posts: 12673 Joined: Sat Jul 12, 2003 12:00 am
That’s another thing

Re: Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

Post by blinddrew »

As Arpangel says, good luck and hope it goes well. If you get a good performance and a good capture then that's 95% of the job done.
User avatar
blinddrew
Jedi Poster
Posts: 21047 Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2015 12:00 am Location: York
Ignore the post count, I have no idea what I'm doing...

Re: Reaper with ReaClassical extensions

Post by James Perrett »

I think most people are trying to tell you that you would do better with a DAW (Reaper/Cakewalk/Cubase/Protools etc) rather than an audio editor (like Audacity/Sound Forge). They are designed for different purposes.

Ironically, an audio editor isn't necessarily the best tool for editing because edits are destructive - you are changing the original file (or a copy of the original). With a DAW you don't touch the original file - you just tell the DAW what you want to do with the file and it stores that list of instructions in a project. Because you aren't continually storing the edits to the file you can work much faster and more flexibly in a DAW. You only commit the audio to a new file at the end of the process once you are happy with all the edits and processing.
User avatar
James Perrett
Moderator
Posts: 12889 Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2001 12:00 am Location: The wilds of Hampshire
JRP Music - Audio Mastering and Restoration. JRP Music Facebook Page
Post Reply