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Your Nebula Workflow

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Your Nebula Workflow

Postby starfugger » Fri Jul 04, 2014 11:41 am

Hi there. I just purchased Nebula Server yesterday and i'm excited to start my mixes. To sum it all up, i completely abandoned pro tools so i could efficiently work with Nebula, and moved to cubase 7.5. I've got everything up and running and i am hoping desperately for the least amount of errors. i'm aware that nebula could crash a system if abused. Which brings us to feasible workflows :) Please share how you process your tracks and mix them using Nebula. do you group them first for the tape effect and bounce each track one by one? do you slap the tape or console on the master buss? your suggestions would be very much appreciated. Thank you!
Mac Pro OSX 10.9.3
8-core, stock 6GB memory
Cubase 7.5 64-bit
Nebula 3 Server
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Re: Your Nebula Workflow

Postby flaviusr » Fri Jul 04, 2014 2:21 pm

Nebula Man is my suggestion to start, it can help a lot to pre render all individual material.
http://zabukowski.com/software/?page_id=26
To mix in Cubase you can use all the Nebula instances with 1 kernel only, if you are running out of system power and mixdown track by track with the full kernels.
After that open another cubase project with your new files so you can mixdown your stereo mix.
Lastly apply your master buss render to this stereo mix.
This is one way that work well for me...
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Re: Your Nebula Workflow

Postby starfugger » Wed Jul 09, 2014 4:53 am

will nebulaman benefit me at this point? i'm also new to cubase and i discovered the batch export feature which exports all selected tracks. how is using nebulaman an advantage over batch export?

also when you batch export, do you export mono tracks to stereo? thanks :)
Mac Pro OSX 10.9.3
8-core, stock 6GB memory
Cubase 7.5 64-bit
Nebula 3 Server
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Re: Your Nebula Workflow

Postby flaviusr » Wed Jul 09, 2014 6:37 am

NebulaMan is lighter for your computer. You still need Cubase for mixing and render the final mix. But for individual tracks I use NebulaMan.
I always export mono to mono unless using reverbs or efx that have stereo content, for that i use Cubase in a stereo FX track.

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Re: Your Nebula Workflow

Postby RJHollins » Wed Jul 09, 2014 7:08 am

Your personal workflow will evolve over time ... based on your personal tastes and directions.

As a general suggestion ...

Audio Levels are important. Nebula is generally cal'd to analogue stats, being -18dB [RMS], or around -6dB full scale.

Placing a 'console' input [line, mic-pre] on each track is common [or not] ... this can be a good start point. You can place a console BUS on the master.

You may need to 'render' each track [based on computer horsepower].

After that ... you're ready to process tracks as you please.

If you are familiar/experience with the hardware [tapes, EQ, compressor] ... then put a mix together.

If these 'tools' are new to your experience ... then begin by listening and testing what you have.

Do plenty of A/B comparisons to help aurally identify what each tool/preset is bring to the sound-scape.

Nebula libraries can 'add' something just placing a preset on a track ... let your ear train to listen for this.

just starter ideas suggested as we have no clue the level you come in at. Lots of helpful Nebulites here more than willing to help ... but you should also provide your own details and experiences so others better understand too ;)

hope this helps a bit 8-)
i7-5820k, MSI X99A Plus, 16 GIG Ram, Noctua NH-D14, Win-7 Pro [64-bit], Reaper-64

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Re: Your Nebula Workflow

Postby Mhoughton » Wed Jul 09, 2014 10:08 pm

It all depends what you're trying to do. But if I'm going for the recreation of an analogue vibe, I'll batch process my tracks with a preamp, and maybe a tape program before loading into Cubase. I don't need so many instances of Nebula cluttering up the mix that way!

One thing I have liked is to treat, say, all the drum multitracks to different preamps. So, in Wavelab (which is what I use; you could use Nebulaman or anything that does offline batch processing eg. Reaper - not sure if Cubase can) I'll process the tracks with an A*I program I made, and then create a different set with a N**e preamp, and another still with an Electrodyne one. Then, in Cubase, I can load all these different preamp versions up as 'takes', so each drum element has all the options available, and I can use Cubase to switch instantly between all drums being A*I, or N**e, or Electrodyne or completely clean (yes, some things sound better like that LOL). It's kind of like having console emulations built into Cubase but without the resource drain of Nebula, and without the pain of having to audition everything in separate instances of Nebula. And the difference really shines through when you switch multiple tracks at once in this way.

Then I can use all the resources for Nebula running more critical mix processes like vocal EQ, drum-bus and mix-bus compression...
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Re: Your Nebula Workflow

Postby starfugger » Tue Jul 15, 2014 3:50 am

Thank you for all your input! Sorry for not giving you more detailed background. So here goes:

I have been recording and mixing for several years now, and have obsessed about tone for the longest. i used to own UAD-1 cards but have given up completely on them because a) they would not work on Pro Tools (the delay compensation won't work) and b) the new mac pros no longer support PCI. now that i am working as a freelance mix engineer, i finally made that jump from Pro Tools to cubase 7.5 just so i could use Nebula (i still own the PT system, just not using it for mixing anymore). i know it was rather radical, some would say even foolish, but i wanted to see how much difference this system overhaul would make.

and after having mixed with nebula for one (hell) week, i'd say the sound is really amazing. my first song was very hard to mix because i still haven't developed a system of working with nebula and cubase. imagine life with BFD in the mix along with several nebula instances. my system and i wept thick, opalescent tears.

now, after so many hours, i have grown much wiser ( :lol: ) and more accepting of this "new" mixing system where you have to commit stuff to tape and bounce from time to time. my motto now is "if the Beatles didn't complain about it, why should i?"

so i will share my newly found workflow with others out there who are first time users of cubase and/or nebula.

i don't put a board or tape in every track because honestly, not everything sounds better with those. one day i will try what others are doing here (nebulizing everything before the mix). what i do is generally fix the levels of all raw tracks first and listen very hard to the song. then mix the same way i used to, one instrument at a time. sometimes i would stick a regular eq in a track for example just to easily hear what i am trying to achieve, then replace that eq with several instances of nebula to get a similar curve. after more or less having all the nebula instances i want in a track, i go and turn off all the sends and pan in the middle, and fix the levels. i don't use the freeze button. what i do is export that track as mono in the batch export option of cubase. when done i open up the lanes option, drag the original track to the bottom lane, and then import the newly exported track. i then save as a preset the effect chain of the same track and remove it one by one, then activate the sends and fix the level. voila. i then add a letter N to the track name to signify that it has been nebulized.

sometimes i get away with having many instances of nebula on several tracks. in this case the batch export works even more perfectly because i am able to render many tracks at the same time, without having to wait for so long.

Thanks for all your suggestions. i'd really love to try and put different boards and tapes out there for A/B'ing.

Now another question: to cubase and nebulaman users, WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BATCH EXPORT IN CUBASE AND NEBULAMAN? batch export seems to be very fast too.

if you have suggestions on how i could do things better please just throw them in here :) thanks!
Mac Pro OSX 10.9.3
8-core, stock 6GB memory
Cubase 7.5 64-bit
Nebula 3 Server
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Re: Your Nebula Workflow

Postby starfugger » Tue Jul 15, 2014 3:59 am

Re BUS on master, yep i do that, but it's the one or two nebula instances that cannot be unloaded as they are on the master track. that's ok though. i also create group tracks and sometimes render the group track and disable all the other tracks in that group.
Mac Pro OSX 10.9.3
8-core, stock 6GB memory
Cubase 7.5 64-bit
Nebula 3 Server
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Re: Your Nebula Workflow

Postby Chicoria » Mon Jul 21, 2014 2:31 am

For me, as a new user as well, what is working nice is to put a console channel in each track. I only check the gain staging and then I do a fader levelling to get a raw picture of the song. Doing that I check to see if any track require another "first stage" processing, like tape or any colour preamp, sometimes a correction EQ, or anything else and then render all tracks (I'm using Reaper). For that I use something between 20 or 30 Nebula instances. If the session is bigger and requires more than that I render 2 or 3 bunches of tracks. This is not a long process. Not longer than an hour. After that I have a fresh session that is already sounding better than before and ready to be mixed. This way I free up a lot of processing for using compressors, eqs, group and master channels, or any other effects. It works very well for me.

Cheers
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