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View Full Version : ACDC back in black production techniques snare rev


theblade
07-31-2005, 05:29 AM
I've been recording the back in black album for a tributeband of acdc.
I wanted to know if anyone has any insights into the original production e.g. what equipment was used,and especially what reverb was used for the snare. (it sounds to me like a yamaha rev5 but I could be way off)

My reverb plugs are waves Renaissance,Altiverb.
Hardware: Lexicon pcm90

Any info would be great.

thx

tball
07-31-2005, 06:59 AM
I dont think the Rev 5 was around in '81. I would bet a plate was used. I'll have to pull out the record, but isnt it a pretty dry sounding recording?

tball
07-31-2005, 07:02 AM
Ok I'm way wrong. Verb all over the snare on the title track.

theblade
08-01-2005, 08:20 AM
Yeah you're right ; the rev 5 came out in 87 and the rev 7 in 85 (I downloaded the manuals)
So what device did they use because it has a big impact on the overall sound!?

btw as soon as I am finished I'll post a recording to get some feedback if anyone's interested.

minister
08-01-2005, 08:52 AM
maybe this is simple minded and you already thought of this...so disregard if you did. one of the dangers of a DAW is editing the life out of something. putting everybody EXACTLY on the downbeat, doesn't always make a for a good FAT ooOOMPHh!!!. when recorded to 2", and not everyone quantized, but "in time" in terms of feel, the downbeat is boig and fat. i think that is part of the vibe of stuff like that.

frenchman
08-01-2005, 10:04 AM
have you tried analyzing the original by inverting the polarity of one of the channels and summing to mono ? This can be very instructive to sneak into the details of a mix

As for ACDC, having been around as a tape-op in the studio when they recorded vocals for the "for those about to rock..." album, I asked many questions as to how they had this HUGE sound on the drums. (actually everything sounded huge !!!)

They told me that they had set up a PA in a big rehearsal studio and recorded whith a mobile truck

They fed some of the drums but mainly the snare in particular in the PA very loud, and got that trough a pair of room mics
When they arrived in the studio and started opening the drum tracks the first time I was stunned that is sounded so full yet very dry. BUT when they pushed the faders on the stereo pair of the room mics, wow ! 80% of the sound was there.
Maybe they used some similar gimmick on back in black ?

The trendy reverbs of the time where the Lexicon 224 digital reverb (quite a sensation back then) and the EMT digital 250. All this alongside to ursa major space station and Lexicon Prime time delay lines, EMT plate reverbs (140&240),
Some studios at the time also had "real" reverbs rooms. Those where unbeatable...

theblade
08-02-2005, 02:47 AM
Thanks for your comments .
I wanted to post a song that's nearly finished but how do I do that and where?

Allbaldo
08-02-2005, 06:42 AM
Man, what an awesome sounding record! I haven't heard it in a while...

CStern
08-02-2005, 06:51 AM
AGGR!! I just recently read a really excellent and detailed explanation about the Back In Black snare. There was a technique mentioned that seemed obvious after hearing the CD but I forgot what it was and I can't find the info on the net anywhere! This is driving me crazy!

Jon_Atkinson
08-02-2005, 07:30 AM
You may have already recorded, and are hoping to achieve this sound in the mix...... But as a drummer I just wanna chip in.... (It's a fab track - haven't listened to it for a while but it still sounds great!)
The drum used on the recording has contributed a lot to the sound..... Phil Rudd used to use REALLY deep drums (Sonor if I remember correctly, which have unbelievably thick shells), and at that point I believe he was using a Remo CS clear head.
The reason I point this out is that almost nobody uses drums,heads or tuning like that any more, but back then it was more the norm.
A lot of what you're hearing will have been how the drum actually sounded in the room. That kinda squashy attack, and the general depth of the snare actually come from using an 8" deep drum (that's much deeper than most manufacturers make nowadays) with a clear head (rather than the now ubiquitous white coated head) that had a massive black circle of plastic glued to the centre. That type of head made it possible to tune down REALLY low, and still have the drum playable (just!!). It gave a really thick "Thunk" to the attack on the snare. It'll probably also have had major damping in the top head (also not now terribly fashionable).
Other than the reverb I have to say that the dums sound pretty natural to my ears.... I can certainly imagine getting my kit to sound like that with the correct heads and tuning, in a biggish room. (If the room is small, dead and boxy.... no chance!!!)
Hope you have success getting the results you're after! It was great to hear that track after so long!!!

Jon

tball
08-02-2005, 08:39 AM
Ive enjoyed reading everyones comments. Paris do you have any insight as to how they tracked guitars? I know on the first record they were using Orange amps and then later switched over to their famous Marshall sound. Instant respect for working on that record. IMHO Back in Black is the "Holy Grail" of Rock and Roll engineering and I would agree with John A in that drum tuning is half the battle. Back in Black has the deepest most natural kick and snare sound. I was able to hear the multitracks that Mutt Lange produced for Def Leppard. I heard tracks like "Rock of Ages" and "Foolin" and again they have that similiar deeped tuned snare that Jon was talking about. There was no magic in the mixing, it was recorded that way. Hopefully Blade you took your time tracking and got things right on the way in, because there are no plugs that are going too make up for the "Back in Black" sound.

Good Luck

ed

theblade
08-02-2005, 01:46 PM
I mixed lastnight trying to get that fat snare and was convinced it sounded ok.Also the overall analog sound was hard to emulate with only digital stuff.The original sounds so powerfull and with lots of reverb but yet the attack is dry and in your face. When I printed the song to cd and played it back in my car driving home I was frustrated by the outcome.
I like to hear what you think and what I can try so I have to post the song somewhere but I don't know how to do this. Can someone give me a clue?

thanks to you all for your help.

Jon_Atkinson
08-02-2005, 02:04 PM
It sounds to me (though I may be wrong) that the reverb on the snare has a really long pre-delay (almost a 16th note), before the bulk of the reflections kick in. This leaves the attack of the drum almost dry, THEN the verb comes in to make the drum sound bigger. Might be worth trying.....?

theblade
08-02-2005, 02:22 PM
Want to hear my struggle?

http://members.home.nl/ronwijnands/rm/youshookme.m3u

thx

Peter Duemmler
08-02-2005, 04:02 PM
Hey, that's not too bad (but your MP3 encoder is...).
Try a snare reverb that's a BIT longer and brighter, the predelay sounds about right, maybe make it a bit longer.

Peter

Naagzh
08-02-2005, 06:58 PM
Blade-

Nice job so far! If I were you, I'd try to bring up the low end in the snare a bit (between 60 and 100 Hz, maybe) and also a bit more low end in the kick. The hi-hats also sound a bit too bright. Just my .02.

Bookerv12
08-02-2005, 08:27 PM
Hi,

I watched a couple friends spend 2 years trying to duplicate the B in B snare sound.
They got close,,,then I read an interview with Mutt Lang's right hand man, saying that they pitched the snare down with an Evantide Harmonizer.

Doh!

Shan
08-02-2005, 08:58 PM
I've been recording the back in black album for a tributeband of acdc.
I wanted to know if anyone has any insights into the original production e.g. what equipment was used,and especially what reverb was used for the snare. (it sounds to me like a yamaha rev5 but I could be way off)

My reverb plugs are waves Renaissance,Altiverb.
Hardware: Lexicon pcm90

Any info would be great.

thx



Forget about all the speculation of how it was done and get it straight from the horses mouth bro. Mr. Mike Shipley(Mutts right hand man) himself amswers that very question:

Here (http://gearslutz.com/board/showthread.php3?p=167550#post167550)

And here (http://gearslutz.com/board/showthread.php3?p=168976#post168976)

And more info (http://gearslutz.com/board/showthread.php3?p=167894#post167894)

That should do it for ya. Now get back to work on that snare bro

Shane

roberts
08-03-2005, 12:35 AM
. I was able to hear the multitracks that Mutt Lange produced for Def Leppard. I heard tracks like "Rock of Ages" and "Foolin" and again they have that similiar deeped tuned snare that Jon was talking about. There was no magic in the mixing, it was recorded that way.
ed


Uneless you count the 20 times Pyromania was mixed from sratch each time.

snoopy
08-21-2005, 01:16 AM
Back in the day drummers used real snares, big ones. Now everyone uses piccolo snares and wonders how to get a deep snare sound. ;-)

Jakeman
10-30-2005, 04:25 PM
theblade, has this tribute CD been released yet? Any info would be appreciated. Thanks!!

Monte McGuire
10-30-2005, 08:45 PM
Man, what an awesome sounding record! I haven't heard it in a while...



They remastered it somewhat recently and the new CD sounds even better. It's hard to believe that any improvement could have been made over the original!!!

A truly great record...

-monte-