Jump to content
Michael Martinez

How to see waveform after EQ/compression/effects have been applied

Recommended Posts

I know there's a Waveform Preview while recording audio, but is there a way to view the waveform of the output of a bus or channel (after eq, compression, insert effects)? I'd like to do a before/after comparison of the effects of compression.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

I suppose I could just put the compressor on the track, set the track output to another track's input, hit record.  I guess this would be the most straightforward way to do it.

Edited by Michael Martinez

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To route audio to another track takes a patch point (or aux track) but then the track must be recorded to see the effected waveform. A bus with waveform preview enabled will show the effected waveform without actually recording the track. Both of these solutions work in real time.

The fastest way is bounce the track with fast bounce enabled.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Routing to aux track worked. Thanks.

As for waveform preview, I made sure it's enabled in the edit-preferences, but I don't see it available as a button anywhere. I see buttons for "interleave" and for "input echo" but no button for "waveform preview."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Waveform preview is available on buses and synth audio tracks only. These tracks have waveform preview instead of input echo.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would suggest using a dedicated analyzer such as Voxengo Span. Use the hold feature to look at amplitude for dynamics comparison ? Use the frequency analyzer for EQ. I don't think the waveform preview is accurate until the wave file is rendered and would be subjected to view magnification and there's no way to overlay them. With an analyzer you can likely set-it up to overlay more than one track - but again is subject to an aux send that needs to be matched to the original tracks output level. Just thinking out loud ( so to speak ).

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Assuming the track/bus headers are expanded enough to see all the controls, I suppose one could create a custom track control setting suppressing the MSR buttons. All the factory track control settings show the waveform preview on the buses and synth audio tracks. In the image below, the track control is the drop down in the red box

T136KVx.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank for the tips. I'll look for the "All" dropdown next time I'm in there. For now I've been outputting to an aux track and that has been working so far.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Most dynamic processors have a gain reduction meter.  To visualize by means of a waveform... is highly unorthodox, not something mixers typically do.

And in the end the advice is always to use your ears and not your eyes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, John Nelson said:

To visualize by means of a waveform... is highly unorthodox, not something mixers typically do.

And in the end the advice is always to use your ears and not your eyes.

While I totally agree with you....

Sometimes It's nice to have a waveform visual in real-time, Just as Audio tracks give their visual in real-time when recorded.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, John Nelson said:

Most dynamic processors have a gain reduction meter.  To visualize by means of a waveform... is highly unorthodox, not something mixers typically do.

And in the end the advice is always to use your ears and not your eyes.

That's fine, but in learning how compressors work I have found it very useful.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, John Nelson said:

Most dynamic processors have a gain reduction meter.  To visualize by means of a waveform... is highly unorthodox, not something mixers typically do.

And in the end the advice is always to use your ears and not your eyes.

"Not something mixers typically do" - Well, depends on who you ask! I'm used to follow FabFilter Pro C2's and L2's gain scrolling reduction graph to see quickly how compressor affects waveform. Sometimes I also mix whole song to analyze it deeper in Adobe Audition. Visual inspection does not replace using ears but it's an useful aid when working with mixes in a hurry.

"Old school" mixing engineers may not get any useful data from looking at the waveform but younger people get overview of the song dynamics from waveforms just by looking at them.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, John Nelson said:

And in the end the advice is always to use your ears and not your eyes.

Some of us do not have the training or, indeed, a decent set of ears, so graphical representations of sound is absolutely essential.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, panup said:

"Old school" mixing engineers may not get any useful data from looking at the waveform but younger people get overview of the song dynamics from waveforms just by looking at them.

I don't get any of that! haha. I'm clueless. This is my first attempts at mixing and, although I find it interesting, I find it very frustrating as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, Michael Martinez said:

This is my first attempts at mixing

Are you mixing with headphones or nearfield monitors?

 

18 hours ago, RBH said:

I would suggest using a dedicated analyzer such as Voxengo Span

This is very important, either way, in my opinion. And SPAN is free, so, go get it...

https://www.voxengo.com/product/span/

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

voxengo span. ok I will grab that.

I'm mixing with both headphones and monitors. I make adjustments using one. Later I'll listen on the other to hear how it turns out.

Regarding visualizing waveforms, although I don't think it is helping me mix, it definitely helped me to comprehend how the compressor works. Especially helped me to understand where the "recommended" values for compressor settings are coming from. 20ms attack. 200ms release. Etc. Before I was able to zoom in and visualize the waveforms and see the effects of compression, these numbers were just random arbitrary numbers. Like, "why 10ms"? Well, the length of attacks and stuff becomes clear looking at the waveforms, so it's a useful learning tool in that regard.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now

×