Thread: HEAT in 2021
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Old 12-01-2021, 12:01 PM
noiseboyuk noiseboyuk is offline
Join Date: May 2011
Location: UK
Posts: 1,429
Default HEAT in 2021

There's a good thread on HEAT (if you will...) but in the 2019 subforum so it doesn't get much passing trade - . 2 years later, thought I'd start one here.

I just got it as a perpetual license-holder having just paid my annual tax. To save any other newbies my fumbling first steps:

1. No software to install, you get a license in your iLok account.

2. Enable HEAT in Options, and you can visually see what's happening in Mix Window View (and you can manually bypass or set to pre-fader for each channel).

3. For the global options, it's the tiny tiny bottom right sideways arrow in the Mix console.

The first obvious thought I had is - bloody hell, can't they volume compensate this? It makes everything LOUDER. That's a PITA. So I played around, read the other thread - several people saying drive at -2 and tone at +1 works well, printed a version of a mix with and without HEAT, volume compensated the HEAT version (it was -3db for those settings) and then cut them randomly into one another to get a proper A/B.

Gee, I dunno.

It feels like one of those that by the time you can hear it doing its thing, you've overdone it, and I've never been very keen on stuff like that. 98% psychology and 2% actual difference. On the above settings, the vocal sounded noticeably distorted in a few louder and exposed sections... honestly on the track I had it wasn't really a pleasing subtle effect, it was "urgh, that vocal sounds distorted". The levels in that project are very conservative too, the LUFS are -21db before I do the final gain compensation on the printed track, so I'm not pushing it wildly or anything. If I want that effect on anything I'll use a saturator / exciter / tape emulator either on the whole mix or just the instruments I need

So I'd need to pull the drive back to -1 I think, or leave it off the vocals. And the tone... well yes, it sounds a bit brighter. But I'd do that in the mix if I wanted it. At which point... is really doing anything useful for me? Honestly, I dunno.

Anyway, what with all the other tools that are out there now, does anyone here still find it useful? If so, what's your settings / workflow?
Guy Rowland - Original audio clips of movies, TV shows and games, licensed as regular production music.

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