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Old 02-19-2019, 02:11 PM
Rockman413 Rockman413 is offline
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Default 32bit float-point audio recording?

Hi there,
I'm a little bit confused about the 32bit audio thing. In my understanding, if I'm recording a virtual instruments signal, I pushed it up all the way high to +50dB and record it into an audio track, yes it will sound clipped/distorted. But If I use clip gain by -50dB, it should be exactly the same signal as normal. So when printing the stems, as long as I'm doing everything with 32bit float point audio, I shouldn't worry about clip/distotion of volume over 0dB.
am I correct?
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Old 02-19-2019, 02:17 PM
amagras amagras is online now
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Default Re: 32bit float-point audio recording?

Why would you do such thing?
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Old 02-19-2019, 02:23 PM
Emi Emi is offline
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Default Re: 32bit float-point audio recording?

I think it only works when you bounce internally, or print a mix. However it doesn't help when tracking...I mean, real tracking, through AD converters because you'd clip the hack out of the converter, burn them, also burn the analog part of the converter and you'd end up with a f***** up track.

I happily stay at 24 bit, thank you.
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Old 02-19-2019, 02:44 PM
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Default Re: 32bit float-point audio recording?

Quote:
Originally Posted by amagras View Post
Why would you do such thing?
This ^
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Old 02-19-2019, 03:26 PM
BScout BScout is offline
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Default Re: 32bit float-point audio recording?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockman413 View Post
Hi there,
I'm a little bit confused about the 32bit audio thing. In my understanding, if I'm recording a virtual instruments signal, I pushed it up all the way high to +50dB and record it into an audio track, yes it will sound clipped/distorted. But If I use clip gain by -50dB, it should be exactly the same signal as normal. So when printing the stems, as long as I'm doing everything with 32bit float point audio, I shouldn't worry about clip/distotion of volume over 0dB.
am I correct?
Yes. But two things:
  1. Your virtual instrument may have its own internal mixer that isn't floating point so the clipping will be permanent.
  2. At some point you hit your output converters to hear things and it will clip.

It's easier to say mix decisions in Pro Tools will be free of distortion from clipping from overgaining where everything is definitely floating point (on a floating point session.) The minute you involve a virtual instrument, you are beholden to what that VI does (if you clip Kontakt, it'll be clipped on the recording Pro Tools does so there will be no recovery. It'll just be a 32bit file that stores the clipped distortion.)
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Last edited by BScout; 02-19-2019 at 05:13 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 02-19-2019, 04:38 PM
Rockman413 Rockman413 is offline
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Default Re: 32bit float-point audio recording?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BScout View Post
Yes. But two things:
  1. Your virtual instrument may have its own internal mixer that isn't floating point so the clipping will be permanent.
  2. At some point your hit your output converters to hear things and it will clip.

It's easier to say mix decisions in Pro Tools will be free of distortion from clipping from overgaining where everything is definitely floating point (on a floating point session.) The minute you involve a virtual instrument, you are beholden to what that VI does (if you clip Kontakt, it'll be clipped on the recording Pro Tools does so there will be no recovery. It'll just be a 32bit file that stores the clipped distortion.)
Good point.
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Old 02-19-2019, 08:02 PM
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Default Re: 32bit float-point audio recording?

Something most people haven't realized is that every sample in a 32-bit floating point word is actually only 24-bits.


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Old 02-19-2019, 08:06 PM
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Default Re: 32bit float-point audio recording?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockman413 View Post
I'm a little bit confused about the 32bit audio thing (...) am I correct?
You are correct in being a little bit confused, but not on the rest.

By nature of floating point math, doing a +50/+50 operation gives you "roughly" zero, but you have rounding errors from two opposite operations. Technically speaking, it is distortion even though it is so low level you cannot hear it.

Fixed point math as in TDM systems will hold true "zero+50-50=zero" which is why many dedicated hardware use fixed point instead of floating point -- but let's not go there.

If you have a 32bit float session it only means you store VI output as it is in its "native language" but whatever audio you have in the session is still recorded 24bit plus 8 unnecessary bits to begin with, because most AD/DA is 24bit fixed. Now what happens to your signal after is another story; you could process your track like hell and then print it to another track, which in 32bit session would now benefit from the situation.

All in all you could come up with a mantra "use 24bit for audio and 32bit for VI-heavy stuff" or just plain and simple think "i can afford extra 50% storage cost etc. so i'm just using 32bit for everything" or .. like what I'm doing .. wait until you have bought 32bit float AD/DA
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Old 02-19-2019, 09:27 PM
wwittman wwittman is offline
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Default Re: 32bit float-point audio recording?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Top Jimmy View Post
Something most people haven't realized is that every sample in a 32-bit floating point word is actually only 24-bits.


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How does knowing that, or repeating it, change anything in terms of your actual choices?
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