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  #1  
Old 07-16-2016, 01:11 PM
Ed Boogie Ed Boogie is offline
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Default Avid HD I/O 16 x 16 Soft Clip and Curv - when do they kick in?

Hi there,

I've checked the Avid manual and am confused about the Soft Clip and Curv functions.

Is the 4db 'headroom' that is Soft Clip is supposed to allow and extra 4dB above 0dBFS?! OR is any audio that goes over, say, -2dBFS on input automatically affected with some limiting and saturation?

Does anyone know at what level this 'feature' kicks in on the latest Avid HD I/O 16 x 16 Analogue, and how Curv affects this?

From my guess, the soft clip only happens over 0dBFS, but I have no idea when the Curv analog limiter's soft-knee kicks in.

Anybody know exactly when?

I as as I recently went to a studio recorded a bunch of tracks. I'm pretty sure that they left Curv on by accident, didn't see that the tracks were clipping and now I want to know what point it kicks in so that I know how messed up my audio is

Cheers,

Ed
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  #2  
Old 07-16-2016, 01:45 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is offline
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Default Re: Avid HD I/O 16 x 16 Soft Clip and Curv - when do they kick in?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed Boogie View Post
Hi there,

I've checked the Avid manual and am confused about the Soft Clip and Curv functions.

Is the 4db 'headroom' that is Soft Clip is supposed to allow and extra 4dB above 0dBFS?! OR is any audio that goes over, say, -2dBFS on input automatically affected with some limiting and saturation?

Does anyone know at what level this 'feature' kicks in on the latest Avid HD I/O 16 x 16 Analogue, and how Curv affects this?

From my guess, the soft clip only happens over 0dBFS, but I have no idea when the Curv analog limiter's soft-knee kicks in.

Anybody know exactly when?

I as as I recently went to a studio recorded a bunch of tracks. I'm pretty sure that they left Curv on by accident, didn't see that the tracks were clipping and now I want to know what point it kicks in so that I know how messed up my audio is

Cheers,

Ed

0dBFS is maximum digital level post conversion so asking what analog limiters that are pre-converter does to that is not quite the right thing to think about. But if you have -4dB analog limiting and you are within -4dBFS or so you should expect the system has analog limited the signal.

These interfaces are speced/factory calibrated for maximum input at +22 dBu -4dB from that is +18dBu, so hopefully anything above +18dBu should be being whacked by an -4dB analog limiter. I've never seen specs for what the limiter slope or Curv knee actually looks like.

But... you have a tool in front of you for answering some of these questions you have. Whack a sine wave out of signal gen. Check some levels with a multimeter to get an analog calibration points and then ramp that level into an input and graph the transfer function (bonus point for doing that in an automated test). And doing this yourself with the actual inputs you used takes into account their actual calibration. The limiters may have funky dynamics so it may not be as simple as this, but would be intersting to just try. Personally I'd turn all this junk off and leave it off and try not to track hot.
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  #3  
Old 07-16-2016, 01:59 PM
Matt Hepworth's Avatar
Matt Hepworth Matt Hepworth is offline
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Default Avid HD I/O 16 x 16 Soft Clip and Curv - when do they kick in?

As I recall Curv kicks in just below -4dBFS and gradually turns to limit as the signal hits 0dBFS.

Soft clip acts hard on signal hitting right about 0dBFS and gives around 4dB of "useable" distortion reduced peaks. So, a signal that would have supposedly hit +4 above the absolute digital clipping will only hit 0. Hitting it harder than that and you'll get the distortion AND clipping.
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  #4  
Old 07-16-2016, 02:27 PM
Ed Boogie Ed Boogie is offline
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Default Re: Avid HD I/O 16 x 16 Soft Clip and Curv - when do they kick in?

Hi guys,

Thanks so much for your responses. I actually don't own the hardware - I went to a studio and nearly all of my drum tracks are not quite clipped, but peaking at around -0.7 to -0.3. This seemed too weird to me. Some have some dynamic range/variation, but most do not and all are recorded way too hot.

So my theory is that the complete imbeciles who were engineering that day, who had just received new Avid I/O converters, tracked way too hot and left Curv on.

So they didn't ever get a 'clipped' warning in PT12, and clearly are complete amateurs (actually it's a very well known and prestigious studio, which is why I'm surprised).

I am the producer and artist and the one thing I didn't micro manage was saying to them 'make sure you don't clip the inputs, yeah?'. I assumed this was obvious

So I'm trying to figure out how molested the audio is. The tracks don't sound 'bad' but it sounds like I have PSP vintage warmer pushing the tracks.

Of course, I wanted to track with lots of headroom and none of this junk on, but I thought that was a given.

Anyway, don't mean to rant, -4dBFS makes sense and is what I feared....

Thanks again,

Ed
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  #5  
Old 07-16-2016, 02:50 PM
Ed Boogie Ed Boogie is offline
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Default Re: Avid HD I/O 16 x 16 Soft Clip and Curv - when do they kick in?

I will add, though, that one of the audio actually ever reaches 0.0dbFS from what I can see - just extremely close to it.

Thanks,

Ed
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Old 07-16-2016, 04:56 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is offline
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Default Re: Avid HD I/O 16 x 16 Soft Clip and Curv - when do they kick in?

I'd insert a garden gnome into somebody...
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  #7  
Old 07-16-2016, 07:09 PM
Ed Boogie Ed Boogie is offline
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Default Re: Avid HD I/O 16 x 16 Soft Clip and Curv - when do they kick in?

That's what I feel like doing. I don't know exactly what to do, I've spoken to the bookings manager at the studio and will see what happens. The tracks actually don't sound not too bad, but that's before mixing and mastering, once you add a bunch more compression and limiting I can't imagine it sounding the best.

In any case well recorded tracks that have then been slammed through a built-in Avid limiter is not what I paid for, however another two days tracking all the drums for an album is quite a daunting prospect.

I'm at a loss...
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  #8  
Old 07-17-2016, 05:16 PM
albee1952 albee1952 is offline
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Default Re: Avid HD I/O 16 x 16 Soft Clip and Curv - when do they kick in?

If the parts are not too complex, sample your kit and replace with slate Trigger, Drumagog, etc(unless the studio is comping the extra time to cover their ineptitude) By default, that limiting stuff is NOT enabled, so maybe suggest they disable it
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  #9  
Old 07-18-2016, 05:00 PM
Ed Boogie Ed Boogie is offline
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Default Re: Avid HD I/O 16 x 16 Soft Clip and Curv - when do they kick in?

Hi Dave,

That's really interesting to hear that it's not on by default... thanks!

Ed
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Old 07-18-2016, 06:32 PM
albee1952 albee1952 is offline
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Default Re: Avid HD I/O 16 x 16 Soft Clip and Curv - when do they kick in?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed Boogie View Post
Hi Dave,

That's really interesting to hear that it's not on by default... thanks!

Ed
Indeed, I looked over all the settings on mine when I first put it into service. I steamed over it a bit but decided to leave it all off
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