Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by J_D__, Aug 13, 2009.
So how do you define the word "brickwalled" as it seems to be used here daily. Thanks in advance.
I call something brickwalled when there are no dynamics left in the music. Everything is so limited and compressed that all passages of the music are the same volume. Songs mastered this way are perceived to be LOUD LOUD LOUD! Also, when viewing a waveform in an audio editor, the waveform of something that is brickwalled doesn't have peaks and valleys, and instead look like a two by four.
Works for me.
It means someone is actively taking away from both progress and enjoyment- the only reason to do it is because someone who doesn't know any better forces them to.
Its like taking a canvas painting and duplicating it on another canvas... but you draw it too big, so half of it is on the wall around the canvas and the rest is filling. You know what the painting is or was, but there is no reason to have half of it on the wall. It could fit just fine in the canvas just like the original!
Exactly. Way too much dynamic range compression and then gain applied until all of the recording peaks at maximum levels. Yuck.
The first waveform pictured below, I think everyone would agree is "brickwalled". The second waveform below, some on this forum would, and some would not, label "brickwalled".
Dinosaur Jr.'s "Farm"
Brian Wilson's "Lucky Old Sun"
When a selection is mastered in such a way as to create a flat top to the waveforms rather than having their normal, original shape (and sound). These waves have "hit a brick wall" in that they have been amplified to the point that they have repeatedly reached 0 db and cannot go any higher.
In addition, the depiction of said waveform in an audio editing program roughly resembles the shape and proportion of a brick.
The Star might also be a little longer in one or more legs and therefore not symmetrical. It would need to be reshaped so that it is balanced in appearance... (that would be EQ).
And, ideally the Star shines bright (clarity of the master source). However,
the Star might not shine bright (an analog copy many generations down losing its luster) and there's really nothing I believe that can be done about that.
To me, the term is exactly what it describes, a brick wall of concrete blocks and putty.
I don't like the term "brickwall" as used on this forum to describe a waveform that fills the graphic window of an audio editor. I prefer something more technically accurate, like limiting, usually used with compression.
its an approximation, and the only consideration (as the thread concerns) is fitting it within the expected medium. The other stuff is for another topic
it means they set a limit slightly less than clipping and then slam the signal against the limit as hard as they can with it still sounding remotely like music.
My definition of the word brickwalled is Metallica
Effects of Brickwalled Recordings
brickwalled ===> hearing fatigue ===> headache ===> losing interest in music ===> irritability ===> turning off your stereo
Gotcha (it's just interesting all the analogies that can be made with mastering recorded music)
Has anyone ever tested
an Acid Mothers Temple cd ?
most of them seem to
MAXED into the red .
Thanks - I've wondered what that was called; so, the terms, 'brickwalled' and 'clipped', are mutually exclusive?
I have a clear idea now-thanks. I certainly can tell this is an issue with most.
In general do the CDs produced in the mid-late 80s sound better then todays CDs?
Yup. The two or three I've met were very clipped.
yes, happens with me in different order.
start with hearing fatigue: some albums i can't hear more than 3 musics even if i like too much of the musics.
irritability: yes, right before the headache
headache: if i hear "a little loud" (volume) i have headache and turn off the audio.
losing interest in music: ...no.
the word "brickwalled" is not used only inside the forum and is used around the music world.
compression and limiting can be soft but "brickwall" means "without headroom where all sounds got max levels and the top of the waveforms change from sines to stright lines or squares".
in the end is too bad.
Yeah, I had to stop listening to them even though I like the style. the guy behind the band (Kawabata) was also in a group called MUSICA TRANSONIC which is unlistenable. I'll never understand why an artist would want to make their music sound like crap, but to each their own I guess.
& yeah, the technical definition of brickwalling is different than the colloquial. So I think it really has two definitions. When a non-professional uses it, I think crushed, maxed waves that look like big fat sausages in an audio editor. When a pro uses it, it's more along the lines of a hard limit, that does not necessarily mean bad sounding music. There are lots and lots of words that have two different meanings, one technical and one for non-pros. It doesn't make one definition better than the other.
Iggy Pop's mix of The Stooges Raw Power. Unlistenable, imho.
Well 'brickwalled' had a fairly well defined meaning to me long before the loudness wars in cd mastering.
The early digital recorders had to use a 'brick wall' filter and this meant that nothing above a certain frequency gets through. This meant a horrible sounding multiple section circuit. By using oversampling they were ultimately able to raise the cutoff frequency of the filter thus allowing a gentler sounding circuit to be used.
===> not buying any more new CDs
Danm I forgot all about that! I should know better!
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