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Old 04-25-2012, 10:18 PM   #33
Mercado_Negro's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Caracas, Venezuela
Posts: 8,331

Originally Posted by Wilkesin View Post
I've been testing NLS and I cant help but think this whole trend of tape/console emulation is the biggest sham we've encountered in 'modern' digital mixing.

I cant figure out why anyone would want to add a plug and mix into it. It's just going to alter the choices you make, but you still want to hear things the way you want hear them and so you have to fight against what you are mixing in to.

I'll never say any plug or method of achieving a sound is invalid anymore, If this way of working is effective for you in terms of time and sound then be my guest, but I kind of evaluate plugs on a time vs value/sound standard these days and honestly trying to add a console emulation on every channel and setting the gain correctly on all of them just horrifies me. In my experience the level matched A/B is too subtle to be worth it in work flow time spent.
That's probably what you're experiencing with NLS. You didn't mention if you've tested VCC or Nebula (I think StripBus and SatSon don't have demos). In my experience, with NLS, you have to fight against it and it doesn't really help to get all your mix elements in a certain "space", it was quite the opposite as far as I could hear. Plug-ins like these do actually help people in several ways: a) they help you to get a clear notion of gain staging and how to get better mixes with "proper" levels; b) they become part of your sound and if you get to know them very well, you can use them to enhance your mix or just create a sense of "all elements are part of a whole, sound-wise"; c) they also react to dynamic changes which gives you a great advantage if you use them as the last plug-in in your chain: you can smooth trasients out, get a better definition or just make your drums punchier while mixing into it, to name a few. A good console don't get in the way and being honest, no one didn't really care about their sound as long as you could get your work done (a console is just a medium to "move your mix") but nowadays they're being used for "cohesiveness", "coloration", "saturation", etc., which isn't bad at all. Now, the thing is people think you should hear what a console does, they always expect obvious and drastic changes and that, in my opinion, is just plain wrong. You're supposed to feel what it does, not hear it.
Pressure is what turns coal into diamonds - Michael a.k.a. Runaway
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