Hi all. I bought Elephant a few days back and finally took the time last night to re-volume maximize three tracks with Elephant (came from using L2). The sound is certainly a bit more dynamic than with the L2, better transients and more punch which seems to give a slight increase in perceived volume over the L2.
So here's the deal. I used the Master Punch +6 preset (it's industrial electronic music) and pretty much ran it at the same volume levels as I did with the L2 - 14.8. No red peaks occured and the output level was set to -0.3. I listened to the tracks a few times and loved the sound but I caught some unusual artifacts while listening this morning on my MP3 player. These artifacts are present on two of the songs and are not in the L2 versions. I'm wondering if it's something I set wrong and can get some opinions.
I rendered the Elephant files in Wavelab, all previous files had been rendered using Sound Forge with the L2. I set the oversampling to 8x for the render, don't know if that has anything to do with it. My computer is an Intel Core i7 920 and the file is 44.khz 24bit dithered down to 16bit and saved as such.
I left all the other settings for Master Punch +6 at default and turned dithering on. When listening to one song I noticed during one of the not so loud parts that there's a quick moment of top end distortion, or like a static sound. It's certainly not clipping or anything like that. It's like a crunching of paper kind sound and it's low but it's there and high in the upper frequencies.
On another track there appears to be what sounds like aliasing on one of the synth sounds during a fill going back into the verse. It's clearly audible and makes the synth sound choppier rather than smooth. This also isn't present in my L2 files.
So, first question is what could it possibly be? Is there a specific setting I should look at tweaking? Is the 8x oversampling somehow possibly responsible? Could it be Wavelab's dithering down to 16bit doing it?
Lastly, just for reference sake, does anyhow know what settings in Elephant would be the equivalent of the standard L2 configuration? I prefer to use the Master Punch preset but it would be nice to be able to experiment with comparing L2 to the Elephant equivalent settings. Thanks in advance!
It's totally impossible to suggest anything not having the "before" and "after" files. It can be anything, including mp3 artifacts. To be sure it's not mp3-related you have to listen to uncompressed WAV files.
Beside that, the "Master Punch" preset is too aggressive so it may produce distortion in comparison to the default setting. I can't suggest L2 setting, because Elephant uses a different algorithm.
In any case, it's a balance between distortion and loudness that you have to consider and like laws of nature this cannot be avoided.
OK, I will definitely give a listen to the original WAV files. I'm at work now and only noticed this this morning on my MP3 player so I figured I'd ask. But I will check that first and try some other settings. However, so far the Master Punch +6 setting was the only one that actually leant a nice advantage over the L2. I definitely need to spend more time with it though. Thanks.
OK, I've figured it out, it was indeed the Master Punch +6 preset. It was just a little too aggressive. I've changed only two settings in Edit section of the limiter. I've changed the Knee setting to 25.0 and the Trans Time setting to 0.40 and now everything is perfect - no artifacts on either track. I've rendered two songs with L2 and Elephant and I can already hear a great improvement with Elephant over my studio monitors. Though, I need to listen to them on my MP3 player for final analysis. The object you listen to most often counts strongest towards referencing :-)
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