Tutorials & Resources! [7/2/2014]

Discussion in 'KHV Chorus' started by Jayn, Jul 3, 2012.

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  1. Jayn

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
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    May add more. I dunno. May this help you.

    How To Record





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    THE PROGRAM





    'Kay so I use Sony Vegas to record now, but I used to use Reaper. This tutorial will be for that. I've been told it's actually a lot more complicated than Audacity, but it's what I know best and I hate Audacity with the vastness of a billion galaxies.

    You can find Reaper here. It's not free, but the trial won't ever run out so it's kind of free ...except not.

    Anyway, I'm using version 4.21.
    It should look like thiswhen you launch it.
    CHECKING SETTINGS







    First thing is first! You should make sure your input and output are correct. This means...You should make sure the program will be picking up sound from the microphone you want to use, and the sound should come out of the speakers you want to use.

    To check this information, go to Options > Preferences.

    This should pop up automatically. As you can see, there are two drop downs. Just double check and make sure that looks okay. Keep how to get here in mind in case you record and it doesn't work right. Adjusting this is most likely how you'll fix it.



    ACTUALLY RECORDING





    This is the part that gets confusing, so pay close attention. The way I do it is probably the more complicated way of doing it, because I know a lot of KHV Chorusers don't actually download the song they're singing. They usually play it on Youtube and sing along with it. My way is more tedious, but will leave you more room to actually fix any mistakes you made without having to start completely over.

    I usually sing with the instrumental because singing with the original singer makes me nervous, but for the sake of the this tutorial, I'll pretend that I do sing with the singer, haha.

    First, add two new tracks to the project. Track > Insert New Track (do it twice for two new tracks).

    On one track, you'll be recording. On another track will be the song you're singing. In your case, this is With Me by Sum 41. I don't know you personally, so I'll just say there are various ways to download this MP3. You can buy it from Amazon, or iTunes, or you can use a Youtube to MP3 converter and delete the track when you're done with it. I don't encourage any 'illegal' methods but you know, do what you will if you don't already have it. c;

    To import the MP3, click on track one to make sure you have it selected, and go to Insert > Media file. Find where you saved the song and select it. When it's inserted, your screen should look something like this. (Except your media should have peaks...which is the white line thing, ugh so hard to explain, haha).

    Now click play. (Bottom left).
    Make sure you can hear it. Good? Good! If it's not good, head back to Checking Settings.

    If it's all good though, then continue onward! Note: MAKE SURE YOU USE EARPHONES/HEADPHONES WHEN YOU RECORD.

    The next step is to arm your recording track for recording. ...This is pretty much just telling your computer to pay attention to your microphone. Click on Track 2, the track that the song IS NOT on. This assures that you will be recording on a new track and not over the music. To arm track two, make sure it's selected and then click the record button on that track. That's the red button on the left.

    When you do that, you should notice a response when you talk. The meter should now be another color and responding to your voice.

    Now comes the fairly simple part. All you have to do at this point is sing. Sing your parts and the black lines. Just hit the record button at the bottom after making sure the song starts from the beginning. If you hover over the buttons at the bottom, what they're called will pop up if you get confused. But yeah, hit record. You do NOT have to have the recording window up while you sing, meaning you can pull the lyrics up if you don't know them and sing while you record.

    If you cough or something during a part that's not yours, don't bother with it. I'll fix it for you. You don't have to worry about things like that. All in all, when you're done recording, just hit the stop button at the bottom left corner. If you make a mistake, the nice thing about recording my way with the music right there is that you can just keep singing if you mess up, then you can go back to the part you messed up on and re-record.

    There are a few ways to re-record...First of all, if you want to delete a mess up without deleting everything, simply find the part right before you messed up on and hit 'm' on your keyboard. A marker will appear so you know where the mess up started. Make another marker where your mess up ended. Markers look like this.

    After you do that, click the first marker and hit 'S' on your keyboard. Click on the second marker and hit S. There should be a clear difference section cut off. Click that section (the section between the two markers) and delete it. Now only that section is gone but everything else is there.

    I highly suggest that if you sing a part over again you make a new (third) track and record it there after you delete the mess up. This way you don't have to worry about any weird overlap if you don't hit stop soon enough.

    ...You should be done now, lol.
    SENDING LINES








    Please send your lines in MP3 format to Chorus@KH-Vids.net.

    Before you save your lines, MUTE or DELETE the song you were singing with. I only want YOUR tracks, not the instrumental or the original, I should only hear your voice. After you delete the instrumental/original track, hit play. You can skip (just click where you want to listen) to where you want to here. Just make sure your voice is the only thing heard.

    Now you're ready to render it.

    Go to File > Render.

    This thing pops up. Change Output Format to MP3 and choose where you want to save it. Hit Render (1 file...)

    After that all you have to do is send it. It'll save in one long file. I don't want a zip file or for you to split it or something weird, just send it as it is.~

    ...*Ices fingers*

    Ask me for any clarification you need. x: There are definitely other ways to record, but yeah. That's how I do it.



    PICTURE RESOURCES & GUIDELINES

    I would like you to chose a render image. This means it's completely transparent in the background. Full body (from the head to the shoes/feet) would be preferred and the best.

    You can find some renders here. It's in French but it's not that hard to navigate. The search bar is in the top right corner.

    You can also find renders on DeviantArt, BakaRenders and Google Images. There are more sites too, but yes.

    Here are some guidelines on what your picture should look like (this is also in the video tutorial above).

    • Full body. From the top of the head alllllll the way down to the feet. Yes, yes.
    • Standing up. Not crouching, not ... doing something weird. Standing up, please.
    • HQ. Aka, high quality. No jagged edges or anything.
    • Only one person to represent you.
    • No background. Completely transparent (in the back).
    • I'd prefer it to match your gender voice type. It's just awkward when someone with a super deep voice has like...a loli, lawl.
    • Not cut off at the top or the bottom or sides or anywhere.
    TIPS & TRICKS

    // Try not to sing too closely to your microphone. It makes certain words/letters 'puff/pop' which can make your quality sound lame.

    // Similar to that, stay still! If you can help it, no cords should be touching you and you should try not to touch your microphone. Try to find something to prop it up on that'll keep still. We can hear you move and it also messes with the quality of the entire performance.

    // LISTEN TO YOURSELF. When you're done recording, go back and listen to it all of the way through. If you messed up, go back and FIX IT. Put a little effort into it, yeah? If you trip over your words, it's really considerate of you to go back and re-record. If you were moving too much/too many pops and clicks and restlessness, try to go back and re-record.

    //On that note, try not to sing too loudly. When you're peaking, it distorts everything and it's really hard to fix. Step away from the microphone, kids. <3 Reversing that, if you sing quietly, it's 'okay', but try to sing at a normal volume. When you're whispering it's not singing, it's whispering, and you blend in with whatever hiss or buzz your microphone may give off.
     
  2. greater_bloo Gummi Ship Junkie

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    I'm a little late to reply to this but that was a pretty nice video tutorial Jayn! The chipmunk songs made me laugh haha. Good job!
     
  3. Jayn

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
    4,215
    Updated with some tips and tricks.
     
  4. Jayn

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
    4,215
    HOW TO SPICE UP YOUR VOCALS ( A CAPELLA )

    a really short and specific tutorial

    Hello my kawaii songbirds, this is a tutorial to help you for this next Karaoke Night theme! I wanted to do something more in depth but don't really have the time so my apologies for any vaugeness, please ask me to elaborate if you're confused. We'll be using Reaper for this tutorial - but you are free to use whatever software you're most comfortable with once you grasp the basic idea.

    INSERT YO TRACKS AND SING DA SONG

    First thing you want to do after launching the software is import the song you'll be singing, either the original track or the instrumental; whichever is more comfortable for you to sing to.

    Go to Insert > Media File to import your track. Next, insert a new track and arm it for recording. Track > Insert New Track and you should end up with something like this;

    [​IMG]

    If you don't remember how to actually record in Reaper, scroll up to the OP of this thread and you'll see the how to record tutorial in a spoiler which'll teach you all about what 'arming' means and etc.

    So, moving on, the next step is to simply record yourself singing. Yep, nothing special. Record like you would any other Karaoke Night. When you're finished, mute the original/instrumental track ( The 'M' button on the track' ) and you will be left with just your vocals. Looks like so!

    [​IMG]

    My 'raw' vocals sound like this; >> PLAIN VOCALS <<

    GET RID OF SOME OF THAT EXTRA NOISE

    Well, that raw track you just heard as actually with some noise reduction. Without it you can hear the hum of my computer a bit more noticeably. When you're singing a capella, it's really nice when your vocals are as clean as possible.

    How do you turn down some of those sounds? There's an effect that comes with Reaper called ReaFir.

    Click on the FX button of your vocals to make it green and open a new menu! Then you want to click Add and search for 'ReaFir'. There will be a drop down by 'Mode'. You want to pick 'SUBTRACT'. It should look something like this;

    [​IMG]

    This part is kind of weird to explain, but when you check 'Automatically Build Noise Profile', anything you play will be analyzed by the plug in and canceled out. So, what you want to do is find a place where you're not singing in your vocals track, tick that option, and play ONLY that part where you're not singing. Get it? You're capturing the hum of your computer or any background noise. One thing I like to do is sit my mic down and record without singing or moving, then I use that recording on that track to build the noise profile and then delete it.

    Important note is to UNCHECK this option when you're done, or you'll start noise cancelling your vocals.

    Easy right?

    ... No?

    Okay, maybe this guy can explain it better - he uses my technique, too!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOh04O6p6Vw

    MAKE YO VOICE CLEAR AS A CRYSTAL

    This one is a lot easier.

    Search for ReaEQ in the effects and add it to the track like we did with ReaFir. Now, scroll down the drop down and pick 'Clear Vocals'.

    You may not need this if your microphone already records you clearly, but it really helps with taking away that annoying muffled sound some mics give. Fiddle around with it as you need to to get the best sound.

    [​IMG]

    So anyway, I already have these effects applied on the raw vocals you heard earlier so let's move on!

    ADD SOME SOUL

    So yay, that raw vocal sounded aiight as it was, but how to give it more of a ... presence? For this, we're going to use an effect called 'reverb'. It gives your voice a bit of an echo. It's very important you get the balance of this right because too much and it's like oh goodness you're a vengeful ghost demon, and too little and it sounds like you're singing in a bathroom. Pick the amount right for your song.

    Search for 'Reaverbate'

    [​IMG]

    Just add it and then you'll see the options. By now you should get the idea, you want to find the drop down and pick 'dark corridor' or whichever you like. How do you control how MUCH is added? Look at the sliders to the left of the options and move 'wet' down. The wetter a track means the effect is stronger. If it's 'drier' it's more like the original.

    So mine looks like this;

    [​IMG]

    Yay!

    How does it sound now?

    >> REVERBERATED VOCALS <<

    MIXIN' THEM HARMONIES

    Unfortunately I can't really teach you how to sing harmonies. There are lot of Youtube tutorials to get you started, but if you're confident with them as they are or if you're going to copy the harmonies in your song, I can at least tell you how to mix them!

    Insert a new track, arm for recording and record away! Now, with this track you want to repeat what you did above with ReaFir and ReaEQ. Next, find a plugin called 'stereophaseinvert'.

    [​IMG]

    This ... Well, it inverts the phase. You'll hear what happens. It'll help your harmony blend in a certain way. You can also use a spread VST/effect for this, which is what I do more often nowadays but I'm sticking with things you'll have when you download Reaper.

    Change the option to invert left or right.

    [​IMG]

    Last step is to add reverb to this track as well, and then turn the volume down lower than the main vocals. Do this with every harmony track.

    [​IMG]

    What's it sound like now?

    >> WITH HARMONY <<

    VOILÀ!

    And that's the simple way to go about it! Do this for every harmony track, inverting left and right as needed to sound fuller. You want to do the same for your background vocals too. Usually, at the end of an a capella work I end up with like ten different tracks such as here;


    but the process is always relatively the same. Have fun and experiment as you need to! It's the best way to learn! If you need any help or have any questions, please feel free to ask. I'm here to help and love teaching you guys things.

    Happy singing!

     
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