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Drakken

Looking for piano EQ tips (eliminating crackle/high range harshness)

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I just finished working on a solo piano piece, and it sounds great on my regular monitors. However, when played back on my iPad or listening with earbuds or lower-end speakers, there's a decent amount of crackle going on. When listening through a nice set of Sennheiser headphones, there's no crackle, but the high notes are harsh at loud volumes, and I end up having to lower it to a softer-than-desired listening level.

Any tips on alleviating either the harshness of the high notes or the crackle when played through lower end speakers?

Here's the song in question: http://soundcloud.com/drakken/josh-freund-gymnop-die-wet

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Hmmm listened on my iems and laptop speakers, don't hear any crackling. Any segment you think the crackling is particularly obvious? I know I've got ears of lead :P

EDIT: I think I have encountered crackling before on my laptop speakers but with other kind of sounds, I'm pretty sure I just lowered my faders (before the master bus) and it went away...

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I hear a cracking as well as a static noise within the reverb using closed neutral studio headphones. Is this live recorded? The cracking either sounds like the pressing of the piano-keys of the right Hand or the Hammerfeedback of some Plugins...

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The noise is a little clearer in the dry version. It sounds to me like a slight buzz in the piano strings/frame that got picked up when the samples were recorded. If you sweep frequencies with a notch filter or a high-Q EQ you may be able to figure out where exactly the noise is and then EQ it out.

For generally improving the sound, I think cutting some of the midrange frequencies (~600-900 hz) would help soften the harshness.

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Sounds alright to my ears, pretty damn good actually. Maybe like Moseph said, try cutting some of the mid's out to make it sound a little less muddy.

How was this recorded, or was it samples? Personally, I think the piano sounds a little close, but that's just because of the hammer noise. The close sound with the reverb confuses me a little, because it sounds close, but the reverb tries to make it sound more distant.

If you're having problems getting decent level then try sticking a gentle compressor on the piano. Something like 1.5:1 ratio. Or is you feel fancy and just want to remove the harshness, try using a multi-pressor to just bring down the problem frequencies when they get too loud.

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Hey guys, thanks for the suggestions. I'll try taking out some mid frequencies and see if that helps things.

How was this recorded, or was it samples? Personally, I think the piano sounds a little close, but that's just because of the hammer noise. The close sound with the reverb confuses me a little, because it sounds close, but the reverb tries to make it sound more distant.

This was done with Spitfire's "Felt Piano" in Kontakt. It's definitely a close-sounding, intimate piano (this is really clear in the dry version).

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Honestly, I see nothing wrong with the sound. I like the dark ambient sound it has, and the reverb is nice.

It may just be my ear or my headphones or speakers, but I love the sound. Did you compress it at all? (I haven't been reading the other comments so I don't know what anyone else has said).

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Honestly, I see nothing wrong with the sound. I like the dark ambient sound it has, and the reverb is nice.

It may just be my ear or my headphones or speakers, but I love the sound. Did you compress it at all? (I haven't been reading the other comments so I don't know what anyone else has said).

Thanks! No compression on this. Bounced out of Pro Tools and amplified in Audacity.

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