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PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2020 10:10 pm 

Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2018 4:52 pm
Posts: 8
I might have tweaked a few months too little to understand the autoEQ properly, but to me it does not really behave.

I have a sh!tload of ripped tapes (around 600 complete sides end to end) and they are in very various quality and spectrum.

My preset is a very soft one and I only use NR, azimuth, stereo image, AGC, autoEQ, realbass, and advanced clipper only for the monobass, it does nothing else. Signal lands on a fabfilter limiter with 8x oversampling after that, so it doesn't matter if ST peaks way above 0dB in 32bit float behind the scenes.

My first action on the tapes is to normalize to 0 to have a consistent level to start with because the AGC cannot handle over 60dB of range between tapes. Then I have to tune the input/output/drive ranges so the AGC is average working in the middle of the meter, and no sudden jumps or compression.

I've tried several times to make a 9band autoEQ to take care of the typical problems on the tapes, but it often fails and wants to raise the volume way too high or not react at all. Some tapes have really crazy EQ on them already and I would think autoEQ would want to normalize those to the typical pink noise curve, so I got an idea, and that was to play a 10min pink noise through it and tweask all bands to do exactly nothing with only the relative dB as difference between bands and have maximum dB span on all of them, and it does work on the noise but not really on the music. It wants to raise the treble too high and kill too much bass.

This is how I approach it. How would you do?

I'd be happy if anyone wants to share an autoEQ setting that have a very broad range and doesn't mess up.

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 4:23 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2018 7:44 pm
Posts: 190
Location: Texas, USA
Hi! I'm also still learning how to set the AEQ/BEQ correctly. I listen exclusively to digital music, so my current AEQ probably won't help much. However, do you have a sample mix you can upload somewhere, of your most difficult song segments, we can use to work on?

PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2020 10:15 am 

Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2018 4:52 pm
Posts: 8
My goal is to "abuse" the autoEQ so it rebalances everything into a pink noise frequency curve, with the slightest dip around 4k and a subtle boost below 80hz, and with my like 50th revision of the preset or so I actually am starting to get desired results 🙂

I've given up on the daisychain of plugins, I want this to work in one go in winamp with transcoding too. And it works now. A really strong CPU, lots of RAM, and using all cores in the ST settings, and disabling all possible cpu shortcuts and maxing every aspect works really well. Transcoding in approx 10x playtime now.

The treble was a pain to get right. Some material lacks a lot of treble, but still have a lot of tape hiss, and some material lacks dynamics or are warped and partly destroyed. Some material is already hard compressed radioshows on tape, made to 128kbps mp3, and has nothing above 15k, some are 16bit wav rips of my own and my late dad's tapes.
It had to fix all those to make them listenable and interesting from just one preset.

Then I have some tapes made on a really crappy recorder with a constant motorhum peaking at exactly 97 and 188hz, and after many hours I found out how to make the dehummer ONLY remove exactly those two frequencies in the perfect amount, and no artifacts at all, so in all I now have two golden tape restore presets, one for standard crap, and one for hummy crap 😁

The results are just fantastic to my ears, and now I can crank it up in the car so everything rattles and it's so sweet to have all my childhood music with me.

I will post examples of before and after, when I've done a few hundred batches, and really is sure this is the final one.

PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2020 9:05 pm 

Joined: Wed Apr 11, 2018 4:52 pm
Posts: 8
And I know it's not perfect. Some songs are gonna sound a bit wierd because the autoEQ is going to compensate too much when time passes too long without certain frequencies in the spectrum.
An example is Depeche Mode - Waiting for the night, has a soft and long intro with almost no treble, so autoEQ wants to compensate the treble by raising it to crazy levels, and has to use all de-compensating powers when the vocals hit it, and that's how it's gonna be.
If I want a total remodeling of all song from all bad sources of all levels and various qualities, there is no way it's going to sound pristine 100% of the time, but I'll settle for the 99% and also have the 99, and not 70 or 50.
It's a necessary compromise in my specific case.

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