Thinking About Taking a Music Production Class

Discussion in 'Support' started by Nathan, May 7, 2019.

    1. Nathan
      No Mood

      Nathan Member

      Location:
      Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/23/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Emo phase, pep band, and concert
      I am thinking about taking a music/audio production class for my senior year of high school. I dropped out of band because of tinnitus and broken/distorted hearing. I hope to participate in this class because music is one of my biggest passions, and I want to get back into music as a whole. However, I am not sure how loud music production is and how it goes, since I have never mixed music in my life.

      Any tips would be appreciated.
       
    2. JohnAdams
      Starving

      JohnAdams Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      here
      Tinnitus Since:
      it started.
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      hearing loss
      It gets loud.
       
    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Nathan
      No Mood

      Nathan Member

      Location:
      Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/23/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Emo phase, pep band, and concert
      What’s the experience like, as in what are the loud parts?
       
    4. Strife_84
      Energetic

      Strife_84 Member

      Location:
      Finland
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Mixing music for long hours and too loud I guess.
      Music production is not about loudness.

      During mixing volume should not go over 85 dB. Since the hearing changes the louder you play music, you get better mixes with normal volumes. People tend to blast speakers loud during mixing, but that is not the right way. The louder you play, the flatter the ears' frequency response gets, so when you finally play it at normal volumes, your mix will sound very wrong.

      Music mixed with normal volumes sound good even when played loud.

      But

      Music mixed with loud volumes sound worse when played at normal volumes.

      So if the volume is not a threat, the hours and repetition can be.
      Your ears need to listen very analytically of different frequencies, volume balances, left and right balance etc. So it will strain your ears much more than just normal music listening.
      And when you listen that synth melody the Xth time if your low pass filter is set up correctly, it does tend to get boring, for your ears too.

      Not saying you cannot do it. But I am myself on a break now because I got tinnitus because of working too long hours with music several days in a row. Maybe I had it too loud? I don't know. It didn't feel like it when I was working, but here I am.

      I have made music for years, and for some reason, now my ears gave up.

      It does suck. I too dream about getting back into music. I have unfinished tracks...

      If you still have that distortion in you ears, that is not a good thing, but won't stop you.

      There are some mixing/mastering engineers working with tinnitus etc. So it's definitely doable. But some of them have started with healthy ears.

      There is always a risk you will make your tinnitus worse as music production is not your average music listening experience.

      So ask yourself, are you willing to take the risk?

      I have read about stories where producers had to stop working because of bad tinnitus.

      I never even thought I could damage my ears. I've been working the same way past 5 years. I am still not sure what caused it, since my volume levels are pretty much same when I do music.
       
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    5. Contrast

      Contrast Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Retrovile
      Tinnitus Since:
      late 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      injury from noxious noise
      85 dB is dangerous.
       
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    6. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      I’ve done music production and the volume is under your control the whole time. Mic’ed up amps and drums, etc, are located in the live room (which is isolated and cannot be heard), the feed you get from the mics is set to a level that you control.

      You could just wear filtered earplugs whilst in the live room incase other people blast your ears while you’re in there, but you should tell others about your ears first so they can refrain from doing so.

      I’ve produced many tracks in professional studios and have done live sound engineering as well, which is obviously louder. I’ve got friends who are up and coming and have already produced some big albums (one guy I know runs and owns his own studio), and I’ve got other friends who are very well known in the music industry. If it’s a passion and you want to pursue it, I would do so with filtered plugs at the ready, but it shouldn’t be inherently loud. Only other people can create this situation.

      The last session work I did was after prince died and I was hired to help record two tribute tracks on guitar (let’s go crazy and sexy mofo). I didn’t take plugs because I knew the volume would be under my control and wouldn’t get loud at any point. My amp was cranked to get the best sound out of it but you can’t hear a peep. It is completely silent. You set your level to mix at in the control room so it depends how loud you have it and how long you spend mixing.
       
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    7. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      Not necessarily. Most bands nowadays don’t crank things in the studio, and plugs can be used whilst in the live room if you need to go in there whilst a drummer is performing, for example. There usually isn’t reason to, though, as communication is done via the desk.
       
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    8. Strife_84
      Energetic

      Strife_84 Member

      Location:
      Finland
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Mixing music for long hours and too loud I guess.
      This picture is telling the truth :D

      themix.jpg
       
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    9. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      Ain’t that the truth!!

      I’ve driven myself to insanity in the past.
       
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    10. Strife_84
      Energetic

      Strife_84 Member

      Location:
      Finland
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Mixing music for long hours and too loud I guess.
      That's why I damaged my ears...

      "I'm ALMOST there! I've worked 8 hours straight (with breaks of course) but... Just a little bit more. I can make this better! Should I go to sleep? Nah, Just a quick tweak to 5000 Hz. And slightly more compression... I can rest tomorrow"

      And...

      I finished the track.
       
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    11. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      I compare this to the artist that can’t help but keep adding brushstrokes in order to perfect his masterpiece but doesn’t know when to stop and eventually ruins it.

      In mixing, our ears begin to lie to us after a while because they get tired. I’ve done stuff I’ve loved, and then heard it the next day and hated it :ROFL:
       
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    12. Greg Clarke

      Greg Clarke Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Wicklow, Ireland
      Tinnitus Since:
      08/2006
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma, Live Music
      Nice to see some sensible advice from @Ed209, that’s all spot on.
       
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    13. Flamingo1

      Flamingo1 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Orlando, FL
      Tinnitus Since:
      4-15-2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma
      I've been working on the same songs for over 10 years!! Haha
       
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    14. Strife_84
      Energetic

      Strife_84 Member

      Location:
      Finland
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Mixing music for long hours and too loud I guess.
      Yes. Too much perfection ruins it, and also takes the fun out of it. And most likely, nobody else but you can even hear the changes you're making.

      That's why frequent breaks are very important.

      The next day feeling... "wtf I was thinking?" :D

      And the worst part is that usually you don't get any warning...

      I honestly felt no pain, etc. I even managed to improve my mix, with horrible price to pay. But darn, it did sound better.
       
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    15. Morg

      Morg Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      8/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Previous exposure to loud music, then caught a cold.
      Be careful, most people probably mix up towards 80/85dB. Sound perception/EQ changes with volume, which is why people mix at these levels. In my honest opinion, at your age already having this condition I would be extremely cautious. Mix at safe volume levels for fun, don't mix for hours on end, and get a dB meter so you can see if you're exposing yourself to too much noise in class or even at home. Bring earplugs to class or loud events, and don't care what anyone else thinks.

      If you're instead looking into live sound mixing, being out in front of the speakers/PA could be worse than being on stage with the band.

      https://www.sweetwater.com/insync/how-loud-should-you-mix/
       
    16. GregCA
      Jaded

      GregCA Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2016
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Otosclerosis
      Yup! That's the reason I can still play my drums: they're e-drums and I get to control the volume into the headphones. I also apply an EQ to correct my hearing loss so it doesn't sound too off (I wouldn't hear any cymbals if I didn't - certainly not the hihat).
       
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    17. Flamingo1

      Flamingo1 Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Orlando, FL
      Tinnitus Since:
      4-15-2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma
      I would say find a different hobby. You are asking for trouble. Making, performing, and listening to music is what got my ears in bad shape.
       
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    18. Sebastians

      Sebastians Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      13/10/2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Guitars, loud girls and guns
      Do it man! I started music production (mostly synthwave and Darksynth stuff) as a hobby last summer (about two years after my acoustic trauma) , as I had to quit my live rock band. Best decision ever, I am now able to produce music at my home studio at sensible levels, taking frequent coffee breaks... Sure takes my mind off T.
      This year should even see the release of my debut full length album.
      Obviously, if you were to make it your full-time profession, I would definitely consider wearing filtered earplugs around the studio as suggested above and be very careful with volume.
       
    19. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      I spent the whole day in a studio today with a producer who has worked with some high profile people. In fact, some of Paul Weller’s and Steve Craddock’s gear was still there including a really nice organ and some sitars.

      I had the same discussion with him about my ears as I did with CJ and he echoed the exact same sentiment. He said he never blasts his ears and is very conscious and aware about protecting his hearing and showed me the earplugs he had which were on his key chain. He said he never mixes loud and takes breaks, etc. He also told me a story about when he went to a Slayer gig and realised he had no earplugs on him (said it was a long time ago) and he just had to “bear it out” were his words. He reckoned he heard some new tones after that but said they have faded. He said he had tinnitus but only really mild (he could only hear it at night in a quiet room).

      It was great to be back in a studio environment arranging and helping throw down some guitar. I was there because a wealthy friend of mine who is a student basically hired the studio and his services for the entire day. It was a lot of fun, so in light of the original point of this thread, I’d re-affirm that absolutely, yes, you should follow your dreams and passions. I didn’t use my plugs once (it was all acoustic). He said I could do some session work for him if I was interested.
       
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    20. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      30sxh4-jpg.jpg
       
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    21. JohnAdams
      Starving

      JohnAdams Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      here
      Tinnitus Since:
      it started.
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      hearing loss
      exactly. we are individuals that have to find a "new normal" to simply exist. some of us are more vulnerable than others but the catch is that non of us can see our cochleas and cannot know our vulnerabilities. people on this site saying that recording studios aren't a real threat to our well being are dangerous and their advice should not be followed. that is the stupidest thing I've ever heard. unless you have a sign on your head that says "please don't play too loud, my ears are sensitive" you're not going to be able to safely hang around in a studio. some drummer is going to randomly crash some symbols or some guitar player is going to forget to plug in his guitar BEFORE the amp is turned on and blast your ears plugging it in. you can accidentally route your tracks through effects wrong and create a positive feedback loop and your monitors will BLAST you. don't listen to anyone saying otherwise because their advice is reckless and dangerous. far beyond idiotic. unless you are going to remember to have a wad of earplugs handy every time you step into a studio and are around anything that may cause loud sounds then don't do it. face it. we are disabled.

      and even when regenerative medicine catches up and quiets your tinnitus, your new synapses will be so weak that you'll have to take even better care of your ears.

      get an acoustic guitar and play as a hobby and find another career.

      just imagine one day leaving the studio with your tinnitus permanently twice as loud.
       
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    22. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      Do you find being at home a threat? How about travelling to work? What about cooking or watching TV, etc?

      If you honestly think a professional recording studio is inherently dangerous then you’ve either never been in one as a producer or you have no idea what you’re talking about. In fact, in most recording studios you have to be quiet if there is more than one live room - as other bands are recording. In fact, you’ll often find they are too quiet. When I was recording the other day it was like sitting in an anechoic chamber for 8 hours as all the rooms are acoustically treated. It was deadly quiet (I couldn’t wait to hear environmental noise again as my tinnitus was becoming crazy loud).

      Have you ever recorded professionally, John? I think you’re confusing yourself between what a rehearsal room is and what a studio is. Live rooms are completely isolated to the point that you need a talk button on the desk in the control room just to communicate with the performer who is in the live room. The only real sound a producer is exposed to comes from the monitors and you set this level yourself, as you are the producer! Engineers are wise to this shit and you’ll find most of them nowadays don’t crank things to silly levels. We mixed at a very comfortable level that didn’t require earplugs at all.

      In my past, I practically lived in recording studios and most of my memories are based around mixing at normal levels. Rehearsal rooms, on the other hand, can get loud. Especially if there are a few idiots in the room.

      Just imagine waking up one day when you’re older and realising you’re depressed as shit because you didn’t live the life you wanted.

      This doesn’t make any sense? Why would you need a sign on your head in the control room? Firstly, who’s going to see it from the live room, anyway, unless there’s a window? They can play as loud as they want; the rooms are soundproof so you won’t hear a thing. If the drummer randomly hits the crash cymbal, then again, so what? They are in a different room. If you are going in the live room to set up, then take control and have the drummer/guitarist wait outside while you set and mic everything up. Once that’s done, head back to the control room and let the musicians record. They have a choice, they can record from within the live room itself, or they can record from outside. If they choose to record outside then they’ll hear their sound either through headphones or the monitors set at a safe level. Most pros don’t blast their ears in these situations anymore. You’re far more likely to get exposed to louder sounds on the way to the studio than inside it.

      Where do you draw the line? Life will get loud occasionally, but this is not always going to be dangerous. Many people on here are clearly mentally ill and need a lot of help. There comes a point where TT can start to hinder any potential progress because one ends up reading the same paranoid shit over and over again and it’s certainly not helpful. That is unless the plan is to become a paranoid hermit who sits at home wearing double protection 24/7?

      @Bill Bauer, when did you last record a song/album?

      Sometimes what I read on here just amazes me.

      I think the stupidest thing I’ve heard on here is that someone actually paid Dr Shim. Very brave, but totally bonkers.
       
    23. Bill Bauer
      No Mood

      Bill Bauer Member Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      February, 2017
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic Trauma
      The treatment worked though.
      You do everything you can to avoid being exposed to noise and headphones. You might Still get exposed, but at least you will know that you did what you could.
      Just imagine waking up one day, decades from now and realizing that you have been depressed all of that time as a result of giving tinnitus to yourself, something you did After you learned that noise can make your tinnitus worse.
       
    24. Ed209

      Ed209 Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2015
      If that’s how you want to live your life, Bill, then all the best to you.


      Seems highly doubtful to me. Where’s the evidence? Placebo trials also have very high success rates. John could have experienced any number of outcomes from merely having vitamin B pumped into his ear. This is why we have trials with placebo controls; something Dr Shim is very clearly against doing (I wonder why :facepalm:). After speaking directly to Dr Shim a few months back I was taken aback at how unprofessional and rude he was. His behaviour was cringeworthy and it was clear to me that he preys on desperate people. That was my conclusion, but I decided to keep it all private (at the time). Not to mention South Korea has high levels of corruption which would put Dr Shim into a very grey area.
       
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    25. JohnAdams
      Starving

      JohnAdams Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      here
      Tinnitus Since:
      it started.
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      hearing loss

      Here you are giving horrible advice to people and you still are bashing Dr. Shim and you're completely ignorant of him. How can you even have an opinion? Oh yeah, because you know everything. So he's a scammer and I'm delusional and or a liar because your tiny perception of the world dictates it? What a sad individual you are.
       
    26. JohnAdams
      Starving

      JohnAdams Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      here
      Tinnitus Since:
      it started.
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      hearing loss
      Just FYI everyone. My tinnitus has improved tremendously and I haven't had hyperacusis issues in months.

      Pay no attention to Ed209. He made up his mind a long time ago that the treatment I received from Dr. Minbo Shim was a scam. He has jumped the boundary from healthy skepticism to lobbing rude, underhanded accusations of impropriety, with no evidence to support his position other than it just doesn't fit within his perception of the world.

      Besides, there are still other aspects of his treatment that I am not sharing. Ed doesn't know what these things are. The end result of all of this is that Ed is setting himself to look like a huge fool and I will be sure to rub it in his face when it happens.

      Look how snide he is. I posted a rational explanation of the dangers of working in a studio with hearing damage, with no mention of him whatsoever and he turns around and launches a lengthy attack on me, and even brings up Minbo Shim and calls me bonkers.
       
    27. Jazzer

      Jazzer Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      UK
      Tinnitus Since:
      1/1995
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise
      As a muso who has been in the business for over 50 years, both live performance - from the London Palladium to intimate little jazz clubs - who has also recorded over a dozen LPs, a dozen CDs, and countless broadcasts - I can tell you that the acoustic danger, from criminally irresponsible musicians and technicians, is actually always present.
      I will admit that the danger is slightly less now, due to better awareness, but it has not gone away.

      One irresponsible “Fucking Arse’ole” crippled both me and my career with a very short burst of excessive volume.
      “LOUD NOISE IS THE ENEMY FOR EVERYONE OF US.”
      No Ed - we do not want to live our lives protecting all the time, but we have to have that protection available at our finger tips at all times.
      Ultimately - avoidance is the answer if compromise doesn’t cope with the volume.
      My knowledge of Dr Shim is purely anecdotal via JA of course - but I am open minded so far.
      This is just my two bob’s worth.
      I have no desire to start World War 3....
      Dave x
      Jazzer
       

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