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What is audio transients?

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  • What is audio transients?

    Maybe I know, or maybe I don't, but..

    What is audio-transients?
    (typical when talking about comressors..)

    Thanks!
    G-Sun.no | MyAudioBlog | Bandcamp

  • #2
    What ARE audio transients

    From Wiki

    In acoustics and audio, a transient is a short-duration signal that represents a non-harmonic attack phase of a musical sound or spoken word. It contains a high degree of non-periodic components and a higher magnitude of high frequencies than the harmonic content of that sound. Transients do not directly depend on the frequency of the tone they initiate.

    Transients are difficult to encode with many audio compression algorithms, causing pre-echo.



    Term may have come from earley Sonar

    Transient is often used by sonar operators to enter large numbers of crit strings, referring to sudden, unnatural changes in the acoustic environment. This is usually caused by an unnaturally fast moving object. It is most often applied for military use, referring to unexpected sounds emanating from another vessel such as operating machinery, a metal hatch being slammed, or the flooding and pressurization of torpedo or vertical launch tubes.


    The way I think of them are audio spikes generated in a number of ways within the audio band or digital wave file. I dont consider them limited to audio. It can be noise of any kind that generates a spike or transient, the same way as AC voltage gets spikes or AM radio does during an electrical storm. Its something that peaks above normal bounds whereas noise i consider to be within normal bounds. Something like digital clicks may not peak like a transient but the cause can be from the exact same source.
    Transients can also have a natureal cause and may be just an audio peak above all others cause by a snare hit too hard and not caught by a compressor (If one was being used).

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    • #3
      Well... WRGKMC already blew the great joke I had about sonic hobos riding the acoustic rails. But nobody's probably old enough to get it, anyhow...


      music and social stuff | The Forgotify Files | A Year of Songs | mutant pop on facebook | roots acoustic on facebook


      The chorus seems a little weak... I think it needs more lasers.

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      • #4
        peaks in a wave form ............ your commonly compress the peaks with compressors, a good example of a unwanted transient is rim shot in a snare track. Hope that was simple enough x.
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        • #5
          this is where I disgree with the common recording philosophy. I like those spikes. I try to make sure they have just enough compression to have one thats not substantially louder then the rest. I think thats what gives the music its life.

          In a performance enviroment you have these variations. Its what gives the performance it punch and dynamics. This new school rationale of pushing everything up just ruins the listening experience. I like some of those little nuances. Hell I am constatnly screwing with my virtual drumming Midi files adding trash and playing with velocitys in a very random way.

          You wouldn't belive how many people have no clue I don't record with a drummer. The jokes on them.

          peaks in a wave form ............ your commonly compress the peaks with compressors, a good example of a unwanted transient is rim shot in a snare track. Hope that was simple enough x.

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          • #6
            Blue2, Sounds like a beginning of something there. I begin to get some images of Hobos singing playing harmonica on a train as it rolls by. I guess you'd call dem de "In Transients" vs Vagabonds who have to slug it out on foot.

            Alluminum, Transients are a bit different than just normal audio peaks. You dont have to compress all the peaks down to get rid of them and if they are in the background and you compress they can actually be amplified making the problem worse.
            I had a song the other day that I couldnt burn to a CD it kept coming up with a data error and it was driving me nuts. The song sounded fine but something was causing it. I went back to the mix solo each track with cranked volume. Found some high FQ crackel on an overhead that was too hot. Might have been peaking slightly above 0db tracking. I used a waves crackle remover on the track and it cleaned it up and it fixed the issue burning.
            It wasnt easy to spot in that case, and the fix worked without affecting the sound of that one mic too much. Overall the mix sounded exactly the same.

            You can hear transients clearly when you use a crackel plug in and set it for differential. You'll hear whats being removed from the track only which is handy so you can make adjustments to remove only the noise peaks and leave the musical content untouched.

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            • #7
              depends on how you apply your definition and in the instance you speak off its right on target.

              Blue2, Sounds like a beginning of something there. I begin to get some images of Hobos singing playing harmonica on a train as it rolls by. I guess you'd call dem de "In Transients" vs Vagabonds who have to slug it out on foot.

              Alluminum, Transients are a bit different than just normal audio peaks. You dont have to compress all the peaks down to get rid of them and if they are in the background and you compress they can actually be amplified making the problem worse.
              I had a song the other day that I couldnt burn to a CD it kept coming up with a data error and it was driving me nuts. The song sounded fine but something was causing it. I went back to the mix solo each track with cranked volume. Found some high FQ crackel on an overhead that was too hot. Might have been peaking slightly above 0db tracking. I used a waves crackle remover on the track and it cleaned it up and it fixed the issue burning.
              It wasnt easy to spot in that case, and the fix worked without affecting the sound of that one mic too much. Overall the mix sounded exactly the same.

              You can hear transients clearly when you use a crackel plug in and set it for differential. You'll hear whats being removed from the track only which is handy so you can make adjustments to remove only the noise peaks and leave the musical content untouched.

              Comment

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