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Subject: Demo
Posted by: UKharrie
Date: 8/27/2014 7:47:58 AM

Spectral Layers Demo
On this site thee is a Spectral Layers Pro2 page devoted to the features - and a promo demonstration which suggests we listen to the Original.....then there are several stages, which the uninitiated won't understand ( no this one, yet ), but the blue-dots move the demo on...
...finally the last stage appears and again we are invited to listen to the new version.
Well, I'm at a loss the hear any difference . . . . maybe my speakers aren't up to the task, but they work OK for Editing, + YouTube, music playback and so on.
-Perhaps a more-obvious track in the first place?

Surely what potential-buyers want to hear are those Webinars where distracting sounds are removed - one that is easy enough to follow.

Despite being a regular visitor to this Sony website I find the emphasis is on selling, rather than service - whereas I suspect most folks are likely to visit to check on Forums - but these are distinctly hidden - when you are looking for a word starting with "F" there is nothing - it starts with a "C" - hardy obvious.
and where are Webinars? I have to poke about to find them - and as I'm busy I shall leave that to another time . . . surely a massive mistake as both these areas are your "silent" sales team?
These text messages are fairly clunky it's not much better than a basic DOS-based word-processor of 20years ago.
Oh dear.

Message last edited on 8/27/2014 7:48:49 AM by UKharrie.
Subject: RE: Demo
Reply by: Doug_Marshall
Date: 8/27/2014 7:16:53 PM

I listened to the example you mentioned. I think it's a poor representation of what the software can do because you have to really concentrate to catch the difference between the before and after examples.

However, if you are truly interested in what the software can do just go to YouTube and search on "spectralayers pro 2 tutorial" or similar. There are a number of long and short videos by Sony's guys that go through things very clearly.

A word of caution: The software is powerful and can do amazing things - but don't expect to just "get it" on the first try. If you watch the videos and either take good notes or pause and duplicate each and every little step as you hear about it until you really get the sequence down, you will have success. Missing a step in the sequence = fail. Could we wish for a more intuitive interface? Sure. But, if you need the capability the software provides, it's amazingly worth the learning curve.

Subject: RE: Demo/2
Reply by: UKharrie
Date: 8/30/2014 2:49:37 PM

Thanks for that, - so It's not me entirely - Phew !
You'd think Sony was able to find an audio clip that does more for the software - even showing what an expert can do compared with a relative-novice. I suspect after a few days practice it will be a breath of fresh air for many clips that we've consigned to the bin....

I thought it worth pointing out in the hope that Sony gets it right, which in turn should produce more sales, etc. etc.

Here's one:
In London you may be tempted to record Big Ben ( the bell at Westminster ) as it strikes out the hour. However, when I've done this, using a .wav recorder I got a good recording of a double-decker bus ( engine ) stopped at the lights and passengers chattering and pointing out this was Big Ben chiming. Fortunately one strike was (almost) error-free so this was used cut/paste in Sound Forge having regard to the lone intervals between strikes and the need for some Foley many dB down to make it sound "real", which was recorded as a single "take" so the Foley / background varied realistically over time.
+I also added some v.small changes to the chime-level representing wind, which caries the sound randomly. A distant "toot" from a London Taxi adds realism to chime four.

Now if that could be done in SL, that would be marvellous! i.e. rom the original rubbished recording.

Webinars
There were some Webinars, but I'm not finding them very easily on this site . . . such a shame Sony isn't promoting its wares for free.

Maybe next year I will get a suitable / more-powerful PC - so SL might be worth the wait, then. Thanks for yr reply.

Message last edited on 8/30/2014 2:55:19 PM by UKharrie.
Subject: RE: Demo/2
Reply by: Doug_Marshall
Date: 8/30/2014 6:42:06 PM

Because I saw that SL was an application that did exactly what I need, I went ahead and bought the seminar training series to get me started. It was worth it.

From what I've seen and what others have confirmed, the only real "competitor" for SL is ReNOVAtor, and to a lesser degree, RX3. ReNOVAtor was 3,400 Euros, however, the last time I looked. And they were unresponsive when I inquired of them. Maybe my mention of SL scared them off!

My attitude, however, is that I have an absolute need for software that can minimize or remove problems while leaving the desired sound completely unmolested. If the ReNOVAtor people had bothered to make their case, I might have made the jump - but they sure didn't! The key point in my decision to add SL to my arsenal is its ability to absolutey remove unwanted audio in many cases. For one edit alone, where the only "perfect" take had a 120 Hz machine hum in the background, and SL was able to extract it perfectly, it was worth the price of both the software and the training series, and then some!

Subject: RE: Demo/2
Reply by: UKharrie
Date: 9/5/2014 11:28:44 AM

Whilst SL may be cheaper than earlier alternatives, I note that there is little discussion on these pages. . . . does that say something?
As to yr 120 hz issue - I'd expect a relatively simple T-network filter would fix that, . . . . although far more exciting to do it on the computer screen in SL...

I thought / hoped that moving frequencies could the extracted, like a motorbike interfering with an interview. Recently I was interviewing when some blighter walked past - not on the grass which was plentiful, - they chose the gravel and made heavy foot-fall. As they appeared in the background later there was some logic in the footsteps, but far less disturbing to supress them . . . - but only when I do buy SL - or maybe wait for a "reduced version" in Movie Studio Suite... Hey Ho.

Training Videos rather says the software isn't friendly enough for Out-of-the-Box use, this is something that maybe needs addressing. The basic software should be able to cope with maybe 4-types of interference without having to learn too much. The Show-Me-How tuts are a great innovation, but sadly neglected by Sony.

Message last edited on 9/5/2014 11:34:15 AM by UKharrie.
Subject: RE: Demo/2
Reply by: ChristoC
Date: 9/5/2014 6:30:49 PM

"the software isn't friendly enough for Out-of-the-Box use..."
I agree, but neither is a modern Jet Fighter for Glider Pilots. :-)
SL is gob-smackingly good, the CNC machine of Audio, but is not for anyone wanting instant gratification; you have to work at it, but I don't mind that.... my clients come to me because I can understand and use this type of software to solve their problems with impressive results (and an impressive fee to go with it)! Just sayin'.....

BTW I Beta tested and used ReNOVAtor for a long time.... SL is superior in many ways; but they are all good tools in the arsenal....

Message last edited on 9/5/2014 7:24:21 PM by ChristoC.
Subject: RE: Demo/2
Reply by: Doug_Marshall
Date: 9/6/2014 3:27:49 AM

ChristoC, Wow, that's cool that you got to Beta test ReNOVAtor. I never got to try it, but I did like what I saw in the few minutes I saw the guys working with it during a recording session.

I'm glad to hear your affirmation of SpectraLayers, too. I continue to be amazed at its surgical abilities and I've had some stunning noise reduction success, too. One of my favorites was being able to keep a wind leak in a pipe organ at bay as well as some motor noise during the seemingly endless decay of some chimes. Oh, and there was a buzzy fluorescent light in there, too. No problem!

Subject: RE: Demo/2
Reply by: ChristoC
Date: 9/6/2014 5:49:16 PM

Recently I cleaned some very quiet solo child voice recordings which we had also green-screen videoed with RED camera - small dead studio with low-level playback of a drone or backing track through a speaker (to keep the kids in pitch, to be replaced later...) and the background sound of 3 laptop fans and drives (room became warm with lights and 4 adults, aircon off as it was too noisy, so the laptop fans soon kicked in). The recording conditions were less than ideal....

Using SL I was able to remove all fan noise, drone & backing track and occasional "unintentional foley" from adults.... the kids sang so quiet the mic even picked up stomach rumbles after we had eaten!

42 of these voices were later layered on each other to make a "virtual" choir, and the impressive cleaning meant there was no cumulative build-up of unwanted sounds. The same layering without cleaning was unacceptable.....

Message last edited on 9/6/2014 5:50:51 PM by ChristoC.
Subject: RE: Demo/2
Reply by: Doug_Marshall
Date: 9/6/2014 10:22:58 PM

So cool! That's exactly the reason SL is so great in my application, too. You sure don't want 40 organ blowers going in the background when you have 40 organ pipe samples playing...

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