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On 10/04/2012 12:22, Tom Fine wrote:
> This is a very convoluted method to recover audio from non-RIAA 
> records. Gary Galo has written a very good article about the science 
> of grooved-media recording and playback curves here:
> http://www.smartdevicesinc.com/riaa.html
>
> Gary has also written for ARSC Journal advocating analog playback and 
> EQ of grooved media, rather than "flat playback" and software EQ, and 
> has specified the technical reasons why analog EQ works differently 
> from DSP EQ.
>
> Keep in mind that exactly what recording curves were used on almost 
> any 78 record is not set in stone, and that even if a specific curve 
> was specified, the antique equipment was generally non-precise by 
> modern standards.
>
> In any case, after many transfers of 78's (and pre-RIAA LPs), I am a 
> strong advocate for doing as much in the analog realm as possible, 
> saving the digital realm for things like file-storage, CD authoring 
> and the like. Minimal but time-consuming DSP is useful, specifically 
> in the area of tick and pop removal. I do all of this by hand, having 
> found no automated software to be foolproof and thus time-saving. A 
> waveform editor is a wonderful thing and ticks and pops can be 
> near-silenced or completely silenced if you know what you are doing. 
> As for background noise, I prefer to do this in the analog realm, 
> tuning turnover and rolloff to ear (what makes the music sound most 
> natural with the least background noise, that's my cardinal operating 
> principle). I also apply moderate secondary EQ when needed. DSP is 
> useful for removing 120hz or 60hz hum, and also very useful for 
> removing low-frequency rumble (just make sure to tune it so you're not 
> rolling off the lowest notes in your program content).
>
> Despite elaborate claims by software companies, I have yet to find any 
> "select and run" software that "cleans up" transfers of analog 
> material without removing a good bit of the content. If you minimalize 
> the automated stuff enough to have no musical content in the 
> removed-audio signal (which you can monitor in most of this software), 
> it's doing very little and leaves in material that needs to be 
> manually removed or EQ'd out, so I prefer to just do that in the first 
> place. BTW, I find this to be true also with blanket-applied hiss 
> removal for tape transfers, by the time you use it conservatively 
> enough not to remove top end, echo tails and air and space around 
> instruments, it's not removing any hiss. What can help, especially 
> with mass-duped tapes, is to not assume that they were recorded with a 
> very strict adherence to the NAB curve since high-speed duplicating 
> was an inexact thing back in the day. So trim the NAB high-frequency 
> control to your ear, maintaining the correct balance of instruments, 
> natural sound on the instruments and listening carefully to preserve 
> reverb tails and air and space. I usually find you tame the audible 
> hiss without losing any content, and you're taming it at the very 
> frequencies where it's most annoying. I know, tuning EQ to ear is 
> anathema to some, but I'm telling you the results can sound great.
>
> One man's experiences, opinions, etc.
>
> -- Tom Fine
>
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Chris J Brady" 
> <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Tuesday, April 10, 2012 6:24 AM
> Subject: [ARSCLIST] Recording_78rpm_records
>
>
> For those who like rescuing old 78s and even cylinders of folk music 
> etc. from junk shops etc. and then digitising them there is some very 
> useful info. here:
>
> http://manual.audacityteam.org/man/Recording_78rpm_records
>
I agree with Tom, broadly. Get the playback curve right in the analogue 
domain before you start messing about with it. The only way to do DSP 
right is where you can process and control in real time. Few softwares 
do this properly, and one is head and shoulders above the rest, in my 
view. If you can't do good DSP, it's better to leave alone, or at the 
very least keep an unprocessed copy. For mastering purposes, of course, 
the ear must be the final arbiter - all the rest is to ensure you start 
from a sound platform. Was it Schumann who said "if it sounds right, it 
is right"?