Spectral edit development roadmap?

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Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby MrSoundman » Fri Jul 20, 2012 12:25 pm

Just wondering if there are plans to expand the functionality of the spectral editor in WL7? There's some pretty stiff competition out there now and I'm wondering if it would make sense to hold off for the next WaveLab release. Areas of particular interest would be enhanced spectral selection tools, and the ability manipulate "layers" whereby individual spectra could be treated i.e. isolate noise, bring it into a montage and then phase-reverse it to cancel (and yes, I have been looking at a recently released special tool from a competitor!).
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby PG » Fri Jul 20, 2012 6:07 pm

There are some plans, but not what you mention.
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby Bane » Fri Jul 20, 2012 11:23 pm

MrSoundman wrote:i.e. isolate noise, bring it into a montage and then phase-reverse it to cancel (and yes, I have been looking at a recently released special tool from a competitor!).


Aah, you speak of Sony's new SpectralLayers Pro. :) I'd love to see some of this in Wavelab.
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby MrSoundman » Sat Jul 21, 2012 3:17 am

Bane wrote:
MrSoundman wrote:i.e. isolate noise, bring it into a montage and then phase-reverse it to cancel (and yes, I have been looking at a recently released special tool from a competitor!).
Aah, you speak of Sony's new SpectralLayers Pro. :) I'd love to see some of this in Wavelab.
Yeah verily, yada yada yada ... but seriously, I don't really see it as competing, more complementary. I would however not like to be in a position where I had just invested in yon product ye speak of, only to find that the next release of WL had something comparable. I think PG's response is clear though; and that's OK.
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby panatrope » Sun Jul 22, 2012 10:23 am

Given that WL deveopment attracts finite resources, and given that a choice might have to be made between sophisticated Spectrum editing, which would be used occasionally by some, and (mandated in some areas) loudness assessment which I suggest would be used much more regularly by most, I know where my vote would go.

If the current Surgical editing facility is insufficient, then I canl resort to RX // Adv (stand-alone or as a plug-in) and if that don't do it, then we mightl check out the new kid on the block. (And there are others out there that mightn't be quite as powerful but have some nifty human interface features - but probably a choice I couldn't Abide ;) )
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby Arjan P » Sun Jul 22, 2012 1:04 pm

What I would very much like to be added to the spectral editing feature is the representation of audio in the stereo field, like Roland R-mix does. That would be really helpful - and obviously with that the possibility to only edit in that stereo field position. Not equally L & R channels.
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby MrSoundman » Sun Jul 22, 2012 8:51 pm

I think in fact that WaveLab 7 could actually afford to lose a few features if it meant that more development resources could be devoted to the core functions, but we all know that would invariably cause apoplectic fits amongst some users (CD labels, anyone?). I won't be jumping ship and yes, I'd prefer WL8 to be a better WL7 rather than for it to be become the "Word" of audio editors, where you only use -- or even know about -- 10% of the features.

The WL7 spectral editor is perfectly good as it is, but I have been considering RX 2 and now SpectraLayers Pro for the heavy lifting. If I interpret PG's response correctly, it wouldn't be a wasted investment. This product (by Divide Frame) was discussed a while back in the Lounge and one would have thought it could have been picked up by Steinberg, so it would appear they decided not to go that way; and that's fine by me, I just would have been a bit peeved if I were to subsequently discover that WL8 had an even better spectral editor!
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby Bane » Thu Jul 26, 2012 2:37 pm

While we are on the topic of analysis tools, wouldn't it be great for Wavelab to have a dedicated stereo imager similar to Waves' or Nomad's?

http://www.nugenaudio.com/stereoizer.php This would look cool just for analysis too.
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby Hum » Sun Jul 29, 2012 8:53 pm

I would like to switch between frequency and a note name display.
Or is it already implemented?

I can only see time and frequency in the little display below the spectral window.
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby MrSoundman » Sun Jul 29, 2012 11:34 pm

Having tried the demos of the various spectral editing products out there, I think it would be safe to say that WL7's spectral editing capabilities are focussed squarely on mastering, and that's OK ... but if your ambitions lie in e.g. instrument or vocal isolation, heavy-duty restoration or any kind of forensic analysis, then you will probably find that there are other products out there which are better suited to your requirements. This does not diminish WL7 in any way, and if I do choose another tool to do the job, it will be in addition to WaveLab, rather than replacing it.
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby panatrope » Sun Jul 29, 2012 11:55 pm

Having had a brief exposure to the new toy (including that on my machine it appeared to swamp my quad-corer and run very slowly), on any roadmap for development of the current spectral editing facilities, my wish list would be:
- optimisation of the process and coding to improve the speed;
- more flexible and efficient display, including fast update;
- an update in user interface to include more "Photoshop" type tools, to allow more effective manipulation of the frequency/time surface;
- improvement (if possible) in the FFT filtering in the digital space, to make isolation/extraction more effective, including depth of suppression, and possibly adaptive detection of anomolies.

When it all comes down to basics, the new program appears to rely on the same basic filtering techniques as WaveLab. Whether it filters out or cancels, its effectiveness all depends on the basic FFT process; the rest is presentation and workflow.

If the focus of WL7 was to migrate it to a cross-platform product, I would suggest that the focus of WL8 should now be to reclaim its place as the ultimate and most useful stereo assembly and mastering program, including the most effective and efficient tools.

Maybe, if with the limited resources there is not time to develop an integrated version, then provision of seamless integration of somebody else's would be a possibility. After all, it is currently possible to integrate one of the versions of renoVator to perform restoration tasks. Those that need this add it, those that don't are not penalised with extra cost.
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby panatrope » Sun Jul 29, 2012 11:57 pm

Mr Soundman posted his response while I was composing my, hence the overlap. Maybe he said it better and more concisely ...
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby MrSoundman » Mon Jul 30, 2012 12:14 am

Eventually I found that my particular task was best achieved with an Editor that costs a mellow dime, so to speak. :lol: This was a surprise as the task I wanted to perform isn't the primary focus of that product. The only issue I've had is that even though said product provides a 64-bit VST3 plugin version, it isn't recognised in WL7x64, even though Cubase 6 x64 has no problem with it.
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby Arjan P » Mon Jul 30, 2012 12:20 pm

MrSoundman wrote:Eventually I found that my particular task was best achieved with an Editor that costs a mellow dime, so to speak. This was a surprise as the task I wanted to perform isn't the primary focus of that product.

Ohhh, exciting! Which product would it be... Which particular task... Which particular 'competitor'... :?
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby MrSoundman » Mon Jul 30, 2012 3:55 pm

Arjan P wrote:
MrSoundman wrote:Eventually I found that my particular task was best achieved with an Editor that costs a mellow dime, so to speak. This was a surprise as the task I wanted to perform isn't the primary focus of that product.
Ohhh, exciting! Which product would it be... Which particular task... Which particular 'competitor'... :?
Well I just didn't want to get banned from the forum -- some companies are very sensitive when a discussion leads to comparisons with other potentially competing products.

The task was to seperate a vocal from a badly out-of-tune acoustic guitar that had been recorded on 2-track cassette tape about 30 years ago on a "ghetto blaster" using cheap built-in electrets. There are serious phase problems with the recording making all the usual vocal elimination techniques ineffective. The artist died about 9 years ago and this is wanted as a charity project to mark the 10th anniversary, as I will replace the dodgy guitar with a full backing track.

I've used WL7 to successfully deal with the tape noise, the incorrect tape speed and got rid of incidental bumps and clicks successfully using the built-in spectral edit, but spectral edit in WL7 alone would be far too tedious for a 4-minute recording and the selection tools are too basic. I demoed SpectraLayers and found this to have excellent selection tools but either left far too many artifacts, or subtracted too much from the vocal; Melodyne Editor, around the same price, does so much better and has a much more musical workflow, plus it has the advantage that it's, well, Melodyne, so you can then do so much more with the extracted vocal afterwards.

I'd be quite happy to invest in Melodyne Editor to complement WL7; I just wondered whether WL8 might be just around the corner and would have something that would do the task just as well.
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby Arjan P » Mon Jul 30, 2012 8:27 pm

Thanks, great explanation! I'm considering Melodyne too, but don't really need it just yet. And I don't think discussing real life differences between products here would get one banned. Actually, it would be a great addition to WL, if it could be loaded as VST (don't think it can now, right?)
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby MrSoundman » Mon Jul 30, 2012 10:00 pm

I noticed that Melodyne is listed as a "don't load" plugin in the VST plugin settings, and after removing it from this list and forcing a rescan on restart of WL7, it does in fact load and you can open the plugin GUI. The problem is that no audio is transferred to Melodyne even though you can see activity in its level meter (in the Melodyne plugin, you activate a "Transfer" button and then play back the section you want the plugin to handle). As soon as you start playback, the transfer button deactivates; it should wait until you stop playback. It should also be possible to toggle the transfer button during playback but this doesn't work. I've tried both the VST2 and VST3 versions, both 64-bit. The VST3 works perfectly in Cubase 6 (haven't bothered with testing the VST2 in C6).

Perhaps PG can comment (if that's not being too cheeky :P ) on whether it will be possible to load Melodyne as a VST3 plugin in a future update? The version I'm demoing is Melodyne Editor 2.1.0 x64 in WL7.2.1.600 x64. It would be really cool to have WL7 spectral edit and Melodyne all within the same application! 8-)
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Re: Spectral edit development roadmap?

Postby MrSoundman » Mon Jul 30, 2012 10:10 pm

Just found this on Celemony's website:

"Please note: with sample editors like Steinberg Wavelab, Sony Sound Forge, or Bias Peak the plug-in variants of Melodyne cannot be used. Please use the stand-alone variant instead."

Fair enough. Apparently for Melodyne to work its magic, it needs tempo information from the DAW. Audio editors by definition don't work with tempo in the same was a sequencer and therefore can't be used to host the Melodyne plugin, so it's not a bug, and that explains why it is listed as a "don't load" plugin in WaveLab.
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