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Author Topic: Maybe I'm colordeaf  (Read 978 times)


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Maybe I'm colordeaf
« on: January 01, 2005, 05:34:26 PM »

I've noted for some time the descriptive terms used by the recording community regarding the way a piece of gear alters (or not) the original sound being recorded. I must admit I'm quite confused by it all.

Some terms that come to mind are coloration, musicality, transparent, neutral, dark, bright, iron, tube, tape, and warm. Some of these don't mean a lot to me, probably because my old ears are so "colored" (like viewing a color photograph through a monochromatic filter) that I can't hear the difference, and even if I could I don't have the neural circuits to differentiate them, or the gear to produce or reproduce the differences.

To my naive way of thinking, transparent would mean the unaltered, or completely faithful reproduction of the sound. Is neutral the exact same thing?

Coloration would be a general term for "distortion" encompassing all except transparent or neutral.

Bright would mean the boosting of some frequencies above 2k to 3k or so, and dark, the attenuation of these.

I guess others (iron, tube, tape, warm) would be the alteration of the signal as it passed through the piece of gear by "harmonic distortion" or "phase distortion."

Musicality - "pleasing coloration"???

Any thoughts on or corrections to the above would be most welcome.

Additionally, I would think that anything that our ears can perceive as an alteration of sound could be measured (with the proper equipment, if it exists.) Have attempts been made to quantify any of these parameters aside from the usual dB vs. frequency plots?

I'm not a recording professional - if this post is inappropriate for this forum, please be so kind as to point me in the right direction so that I can get a handle on how all these terms fit into a cohesive whole.

Oh, and all y'all have a great year ahead!

Peter Wilcox
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