Academy Dashboard Forum Academy Academy Lesson Suggestions De-essing like the pros

  • This topic has 13 replies, 7 voices, and was last updated 7 years ago by peter.soton88.
Viewing 12 posts - 1 through 12 (of 14 total)
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  • #12007
    Chris Sweet
    Participant

      How's it done? I often end up with really unnatural sounding s's and t's and f's (probably poor mic technique is a factor.) so what can be done? De-essers tend to make things sound a little weird too. (Maybe user error?) I listen to pop productions like Taylor Swift and the s's are perfectly tucked in while still heavily compressed.

      #12010
      Anders Isberg
      Participant

        Great idea for a topic Chris! The concept of De-essing is simple enough, but it's really hard to do it well so that the vocals doesn't sound overly processed and un-natural.

        #12020
        Mark Moore
        Participant

          Yes, great topic. Lots of really good de-essing plug ins out there. But I still use surgical volume automation on lead vocals. Takes a bit of time, but it keeps the lisps and Sylvester phthhs out of your up front vocal track.
          On the backgrounds I'll run the Waves or Nomad Factory De-Esser.

          #12026
          Chris Sweet
          Participant

            That's probably the way to go mcmoore but it sure is time consuming!

            #12032
            Mark Moore
            Participant

              Indeed it is, Chris. Sometimes takes longer than tuning but I've found it far more effective than trying to control those esses and plosives with a single plug in.
              It's hard to throw a net on all of a performance without something poking out.
              Mark.

              #12036
              Chris Sweet
              Participant

                Not sure which DAW you use but do you typically do the gain automation pre or post compression?

                #12038
                Mark Moore
                Participant

                  Kinda both, actually. Because I have two compressors usually on the lead vocal, I'll put on a Waves CLA 1176 then write my automation. After that, I'll install a CLA LA2A and go back and tweak just in case the 2nd compressor is pulling the esses back up too much.
                  I work in Sonar and use ProTools mostly for file transfers.

                  #12985
                  Musa Henderson
                  Participant

                    Question for mcmoore is your vocal ride a fader ride or clip gain?

                    I've always done fader rides but recently found clip gain (or a trim plugin) better as i get more consistency with gentle compression. It takes forever though as I have to automate the compressors input as well.

                    Then i find tickling a deesser after this is really nice before moving on to another processor.

                    #12988
                    Mark Moore
                    Participant

                      Hey Musa,
                      Technically it would be a fader ride. I draw them using volume automation tools on the offending blobs between compressors.
                      When you use clip gain automation are you splitting the clip, decreasing clip gain and then cross fading each ess and plosive?
                      That would be a lot of work.
                      Yikes.

                      #14822
                      Tobi
                      Keymaster

                        Have you tried Fabfilter's De-esser? It's pretty clever... though I'd agree sometimes going in and automating by hand is the only way to go.

                        #14942
                        Mark Moore
                        Participant

                          Hey Toby.
                          I haven't tried the Fabfilter De-Esser yet, though I've heard it's quite cool.
                          Another technique I like using particularly on lead vocals is reducing the gain of the esses, plosives and breath blobs in Melodyne while I'm tuning my vocal comp. Everything is right there and I can hear in real time how it sounds before exporting that vocal file to my session. Then if need be and can further automate.
                          More than one way to skin an ess.

                          #16566
                          Chris Sweet
                          Participant

                            I picked up the fabfilter d-s a few months ago. Holy smokes that thing works well. Problem solved.

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