Audio Quantize Challenge...

Folks on this list seem pretty helpful so I’ll throw this out there.
I may have bitten off more than I’d like, but here’s the challenge I’ve taken on…
I have volunteered to work on a legacy project for a local singer-songwriter. He has given me the multi-tracks from an old project that he wants to revive. Basically he wants to add new audio and midi on top of some acoustic guitar/vocal tracks. They bleed into each other (a lot) so I’ll have to work with both tracks in one folder. (I’m assuming) His time is pretty good but it wasn’t recorded with a click track, which poses a problem for anyone else adding overdubs at this point. I’d like to…
-Create a tempo map (I have done this)
-Some of the events still drift from the tempo map, so I’d like to line them up a bit.
-Finally I’d like straighten the whole track(s) out so it is loosely quantized and aligned to a more regular tempo.
I should also point out that, unlike a drum track where there are gaps, this is continuous audio.

Can all this be accomplished and still maintain the integral quality of the audio?
Again, I have looked at the manual and found references to these functions but not all in the same place nor are they coming at it in the way I’m trying to make this happen. Thanks in advance for any guidance.

OK, let’s hold it there! WHY can’t you overdub without a click track?

Yes , doing the overdubs without a click is an option (and perhaps even preferable) but what i’m trying to do is straighten out the time on the two tracks so that the " overdubbers" can have something more reliable, timing-wise to play along with. As it is now, the time is just too wonky and I’d like to establish a modicum of a groove. The click is not really the issue, I’m just hoping to nudge the 2 tracks into “the ballpark”.

Don’t worry about the musicians who will be overdubbing. They’ll listen, practice a few times, and play along with anything they’re given quite happily!

Listen to Randy Newman with an orchestra, listen to any current “remix” of a classic track. Ultra-loose rhythm can work. Ripping a song to bits, quantising and applying a “groove” can work. My feeling is that if a performance - particularly a vocal - wasn’t recorded against a groove it will sound un-natural if a groove is imposed on it. Even if you do move syllables to align with beats.

The originals were just vocal/guitar? I don’t suppose he’s forgotton how to play guitar. Has he any voice left? Polishing turds is a thankless pursuit! Bring him in and start over!

Thanks for your input. When it all comes down in the end, you’re right. Just because we can do something, it doesn’t automatically follow that we should do it. I may just have to get him in and redo his stuff with a view to a different take on the production and better tools in hand. However, as a new Cubase user, I was curious to see what could be accomplished with the various new audio editing (mangling?) functions. Well, they’re new to me.
As I mentioned in an earlier post, I have been a long time Logic user and so far I’m really impressed with what Cubase offers. The tempo detection function for one, is far more intuitive and accurate than Logic and I wanted to get into these tracks, just to see what else was possible.
It may not be worth it or advisable, in this specific case (or at all…), but I’d still like to know how to do what I started out trying to do.

The “Dealing With Tempo” a little further down the page might give you some ideas. Note that he’s after a “remix” rather than an enhancement though! Another of those things people do “because they can” :slight_smile:

Thanks very much. This is more or less what I was looking for and it works. Again it’s great how Cubase handles this sort of thing. Although you’re absolutely right, the result, while it is strictly correct time-wise, is a bit dry and devoid of feeling. But it’s a starting point. :wink:

Or maybe a finishing point, as you realise that though increasing accuracy, you’ve removed quality?


And thanks again.