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Vocal pitch correction

180 posts since 19 May, 2009, from UK

Postby mickwest1; Tue Dec 04, 2012 5:37 am Vocal pitch correction

In a recent post I suggested to Jorgen that built in or a VST pitch correction would be a good idea - particularly if it's like the Cubase vari-audio screen - this is definitely the best at the moment

but messing around with plugins I've found some interesting facts

I've tried Melodyne and Antares autotune but these are quite expensive to buy and in my opinion not great really. Melodyne is horrible to use (although they keep saying how easy it is!??) - Antares is OK but still a bit fiddly and flawed in some respects

There are some freeware plugs though - the best ones I've found so far are GSnap and Kerovee

.....and I've found that the best way to use them is by utilising the midi in function

To do this you need to load the plugin in modular view - that way it will appear on both the midi and audio output lists

so obviously you route your audio track output to it - and also create an instrument (midi) track and route that to it also - you should realise though that the midi and audio inputs of the plugin are two different things

you also have to set the plugin to midi in mode

so now - any notes on your instrument track will control the audio - this is a great way of working as you can choose exactly when to correct - if there are no midi notes present nothing will happen - you can also use pitchbend !!

Kerovee is very easy to set up and has a good understandable interface - it also has three channels - one for the original unaffected sound - and two for different pitch corrected or re-pitched outputs - you can go up to an octave up or down - this is what Kerovee is quite good for - for getting additional re-pitched voices - the formant controls get a pretty convincing female voice sound - or a big burly bloke!!

the drawback though is that the quality is a bit grainy - so not really usable to get a quality lead vocal track - hopefully they will improve it at some time(?)

GSnap on the other hand - has very good audio quality - in fact to my ears it's better than the Antares !! - but it is not as easy or adaptable as Kerovee -

I've given up on GSnap a couple of times as I couldn't seem to get anything happening - you have to read the manual (provided) thoroughly as some of the controls don't do what you might think - particularly the "speed" control - this only seems to work effectively around half way settings.

GSnap is purely for pitch correction and it is quite precise - and good audio quality- so worth persevering with

autotalent is another freeware plug - very basic but works fairly well - although there's no midi in facility

Now that I've rambled on I may as well give my answer in advance to those people who - whenever this subject comes up - always chip in with "why not learn to sing properly in the first place?" -

well it never hurts to try to improve your skills - but anyone who has recorded a lot of vocals (as I have) will tell you that even the best singers will sing flat or sharp quite often - years ago (days of tape) a bum note - or bit of bad timing - would usually mean re-recording whole lines - sometimes many times - and everybody getting a bit wound up - including the singer - and when you get a take it probably won't be as good as the first slightly flawed one

Now when I record vocals - I still try to get good takes - but I can be much more tolerant when I know I can easily correct small errors - It's all a lot quicker and a lot less hassle - and less stressful for everybody
(you can also catch a good "practise" take and synch it up afterwards)

even the best pitch correction cannot perform miracles though - if something is wildly out it will be pretty hard to correct it and still sound natural - so it's still a good idea to record at least a couple of takes for safety

phew - what a ramble!!


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