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Coffee Jaworower

streaming live music using B.u.t.t. streaming software

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I'm streaming my guitar and mic using Butt (broadcasting using this tool) through a Behringer 1024 usb mixer  and getting quite low volume inworld I've checked all my levels in my PC sound  settings  I've even tried running the mixer through a focusrite audio interface with out any difference. I am audible inworld but I have to turn the levels right up  any ideas to increase my volume without clipping / settings other people are using  would be appreciated  Thank you.

Edited by Coffee Jaworower

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This isn't at all what I thought a thread with this subject would be about. 

DISAPPOINTED. 

Also, sorry, I have no idea about your question. Are their Butt forums? 

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1 hour ago, Coffee Jaworower said:

I'm streaming my guitar and mic using Butt (broadcasting using this tool) through a Behringer 1024 usb mixer  and getting quite low volume inworld I've checked all my levels in my PC sound  settings  I've even tried running the mixer through a focusrite audio interface with out any difference. I am audible inworld but I have to turn the levels right up  any ideas to increase my volume without clipping / settings other people are using  would be appreciated  Thank you.

Try talking with other inworld DJs* and ask for help. They'll know more about such things and/or can point you in the direction you need to go.

*musicians too but DJs are usually more helpful in my experience

Edited by Selene Gregoire

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I use a similar setup, with my guitars and mic going into an Allen&Heath ZED10fx.

One thing I have noticed in SL is that pretty much ALL live performers have a lower overall level than "radio streams" - DJs are closer but still tend to be overall lower than packaged "radio." This is mostly due to their input having its dynamic range compressed and then its gain boosted, so the whole track ends up with an overall higher level. This is common broadcasting practice but is sadly overused - you've experienced this on your TV when the ads shout at you compared to the level of the show they are interrupting! In part it's a legacy of analog radio where overall higher amplitudes were needed to break the signal out of the interference. "This is how you do it for broadcast" even though the actual need for it has largely gone away.

For my part, I do all the usual stuff setting up as I would for a live session IRL. Al the usual stuff you would do for setting up a mixer, levelling each step in the signal path in order.

PFL each channel, setting the gain to use as much of the dynamic range of the mixer as possible, according to its built-in meter. Next, monitor the main mix - with and without fx - and balance the mix with the individual channels faders.

Check your windows settings on your sound device, make sure it's not peaking in the "meter" displayed in audio settings but is using about 80% of that meters range - since it doesn't have a db level scale. Below that you should turn up the sensitivity of your input in the device settings, but don't set it to above 75%-80% on that slider (higher than that you'll start getting clipping and noise artefacts from windows itself) - if you still need more level to use all the devices dynamic range, you should turn up the main mix on the mixer. If you have to set your windows device lower than 50% to avoid peaking, turn down the main mix on your mixer as you are probably overdriving the input device. You want the meter showing a decent range with input device sensitivity set in in the 50%-80% range.

Only now fire up B.U.T.T. - it has meters and a master fader too. At this point that is the only control you should touch. Adjust it so that your performance is using all of it's range without clipping. If you need to do more than a few db cut or boost in B.U.T.T., a previous step is probably a little off. Use your judgement and your audio engineering experience to determine if it's acceptable or if you need to go back and rework a previous step.

Make sure your levels are acceptable and you're not clipping by playing a quieter and a louder track through the stream while capturing the stream on another machine and listening back to the capture.

 

Now, if you MUST have a high-level compressed sound going to your stream, you will need your mixer to feed a compressor which then goes to a DAC for input to your computer. With carefully chosen compressor parameters and by adjusting the gain on your DAC you will be able to keep almost your entire performance in the upper half of the meter without losing so much dynamic range that you sound "thin" or "flat" but be warned that it will be easy to detract from the "live feel" of your stream that way - you want it to sound like a live gig rather than a radio stream, because that's what it is!

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1 hour ago, Coffee Jaworower said:

Yes I will Thank you.  I'm not a DJ by the way   just thought there might be a live musician who read the forums and had an answer  but I was wrong sorry  :)

.  

No worries. Da5id showed up so you're in pretty good hands.

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You're welcome. Remember that on a stream you are at the mercy of the providers encoder and the viewers decoder, but at least that's a mostly level field. As a performer who is also their own "sound guy" all you can do is make sure you're feeding the best - not necessarily the loudest - quality audio to the stream so that it truly reflects the dynamics and sound of the performance and that when you're performing you are getting a true and accurate monitor so that you can use your performance skills effectively - you can't do that if you are hearing anything different to what is being sent to the stream in realtime :)

Accomplish both of those and you'll sound great. Your listeners will hear exactly what you are playing and singing, exactly how you are playing and singing it.

A lot of venues are aware of the compressed-and-boosted nature of a radio stream too, so do not be surprised if at the end of your set the venue's host announces "Switching to radio now, watch your volume!" or something similar.

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@Coffee Jaworower - Followup. I did some research on your model of mixer to be sure I had given the right advice and the Behringer 1024 has a particular feature not common on small mixers that will work to your advantage. You have a compressor built in to each input channel.

Adjust this for your vocals and your guitar independently while monitoring only that channel and adjusting its gain as you go - I don't know the block diagram of that mixer so I don't know if its PFL path takes the signal before or after the compressor, but it would make much more sense for it to be after the compressor, so I'm assuming you can be in PFL with the mixers meters showing that channel pre-fade and both see and hear the effects of the compression. 

Now, it's a relatively simple compressor - you have only one control for its strength, you can't adjust the hardness or softness of the "knee" in its profile and you don't have separate control over a limiter stage to explicitly damp peaks and prevent clipping so you're going to have to fall back on the sound engineers best tool, the Mk. I ear, to find the limits of how much compression you can apply to each channel without it sounding like crap. Once you've found that limit you're going to want to apply about 75% of that as a starting point and adjust the gain accordingly. You should find that you can be levelled to avoid clipping but still have a bit more "loudness" headroom on each channel - by the time you balance the mix you should find that overall your mix is louder for the same peak level on the meters at each step of the process I described above.

If at any stage of listening to the main mix you start thinking you might have too much compression on either channel, do not just back it off a little and try and compensate for it at that later stage. Start over with levelling each step. Changing the compression will mean your input gain is "off" by a little (or a lot, depending on how much compression you had dialed in and how much you changed it) and each departure from ideal is magnified by the next stage, so even a small goof in input gain is almost guaranteed to give you a messed up mix by the time it feeds into the stream.

I apologize if I'm insulting your experience and going too far towards "sound engineering 101" but I don't know how much production experience you have and being "too basic" for your experience at least includes all the information you actually do need, whereas erring the other way wouldn't.

Edited by Da5id Weatherwax
Curse you, autocorrect!
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17 hours ago, Beth Macbain said:

This isn't at all what I thought a thread with this subject would be about. 

DISAPPOINTED. 

Also, sorry, I have no idea about your question. Are their Butt forums? 

OP could be talking out of their..experience. You thought I was going to say butt!

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