View Full Version : The Ereban Overture - feedback requested

07-22-2005, 07:55 AM
I'm currently composing a soundtrack to accompany my first novel, Last of the Namers, which is the first book of my Ereban Archives series. I'm creating the music using Cakewalk Home Studio 2004 and Symphonic Orchestra Silver.

Here's The Ereban Overture (http://www.superiorvision.f2s.com/the_ereban_overture-high.mp3), the opening track and the signature theme for the story. It's the fourth track I've made using SO Silver, and took a good 25 hours to put together :eek:

EDIT: Try this version (http://www.superiorvision.f2s.com/the_ereban_overture.mp3) if you get any peaking. I've trimmed a few decibels off.

So, comments please. Feel free to comment on any aspect (please keep it constructive), but in particular:

- How's the mix? I don't get any peaking or distortion on my speakers, but you never know how these things turn out until they're tested on a whole bunch of setups. Do the primary melodies come forward sufficiently? Did you find anything distracting or does it flow well?

- Does the layering become confusing at any point? Do the sections of the orchestra balance each other well?

- How's the flow of the piece? Do the changes in tempo work all right?

- Most importantly, did it keep your interest throughout?

07-22-2005, 08:22 AM
sounds good to me - exposed woodwinds never sound great on samples though. I'd like a bit more counterpoint, something else going on to give the whole thing a bit more movement. The strings work well with the brass - as they usually do in stuff like this!
A couple of points I'm not certain how to remedy, but in general the orchestra sounds a bit 'flat'. I know these are samples - and there's only so much one can do with them, but I'm sure there are a couple of tricks you could use with dynamics, reverb, keyswitching etc. Finally - a soundtrack...for a novel?! I'm intrigued!

Hope you found all that helpful - I'd appreciate if you could cast a critical ear over a work-in-progress piece, Into the Breach a couple of posts down from this one...

07-22-2005, 08:25 AM
The sound is too high to me, I hear peaks with my headphones

07-22-2005, 09:07 AM
Okay, I've trimmed a few decibels off each layer and tested it with the cheapest headphones I could find lying around ^^. I've also re-encoded it at 128kbps. Has that got rid of the peaks for you?

EDIT: I think it's weakened the impact of it personally, or maybe just unbalanced the mix, so I'll continue to play around with it when I've got time. For now take your pick from the reduced volume version that's now inserted in the first post, or the full-fat original.

07-22-2005, 11:31 AM
If you're having clipping issues, you're missing some steps.

Pay close attention to your a gain stages.

Use cc7 to keep the individual instrument volumes down.

Use a limiter on your master output when mixing down, and set
the ceiling to -.01 .

When more than one instrument passes through a single stereo bus,
you have a summing of those levels, wich usually always requires
dynamics control of some sort.
I like to use the Waves L2 maximizer.


07-22-2005, 01:59 PM
Thanks TK, I'll look into that. I'm still on the low end of the learning curve as far as sequencing and mixing are concerned (and pretty much everything else :D ).

07-29-2005, 01:34 AM
Apologies for the double post, but I've tweaked the mix on this track now. I gave myself a crash course in mixing courtesy of the University of Google, figured out how to utilise the main virtual and aux buses properly, applied some compression and a limiter, tweaked, tweaked and tweaked again... and it probably hasn't made any difference, lol. I didn't know how little I understood of the process until I really looked into it @_o

Anyway, here's the adjusted version (http://www.superiorvision.f2s.com/the_ereban-lotn.mp3). I've popped it on CD and tested it on a few different sound systems from a hi-fi to headphones on a CD Walkman and it seems fine on all of them. I'd appreciate it if I someone else could test it using headphones just to verify that I've got rid of all that peaking. Thanks.