Har-bal

Anyone using it?

This came up on the board a while back. Just thought I’d see if anyone was using it now: http://www.har-bal.com/

Do a google and you’ll find lots of very postive reviews. I’m quite tempted - I already use the demo to help spot EQ problems which I try and fix in N track, but I find the N track in built EQ so fiddly. The idea of sorting it all out there on the graph is appealing.

Any thoughts?

PS Yeah, I know use your ears and all that… :D

I bought it a while back, and I know there are at least one or two others here that own it as well…

My results have been mixed, at best, though I suspect that I’m probably just not using it properly. I’ve mostly just loaded one of the reference files and adjusted the EQ Graph to roughly match it. I’m thinking it’s probably better to be much more conservative in making adjustments - smoothing out any major peaks and valleys.

It certainly does what it claims to do, and I’ve had no crashes or any odd behavior from the program itself. It’s not a miracle tool, but it’s a decent tool. You’ll still need to use your ears.





:cool:

I use it regularly, though mostly as a tool to see where the problems are. It’s easy to burn yourself with it. Getting a flat-ish EQ is good but you need to be familiar enough with the overall EQ to know whether or not there should be EQ in the dips or that the peaks really need to come down. I love it by the way.

My cat has hair balls. Have not found any use for them musically. Do you use them for percussion, melody, rhythm?.. please elaborate.

I’ve been looking at this for some time, now… How do you use it… ?? On a per-track Basis? or do you use it on group mixes? Do you think it’s worth the bucks?

Bill…

Use it on the final mix as a mastering tool, usually. I’ve used it occasionally on individual tracks if there was a peak I could hear but couldn’t find easily by sweeping the EQ and I wanted to nuke it. Some times peaks like that might be more than on frequency. This helps with that, too.

The demo works pretty well, but limits playback to 8 bits. I don’t remember if it saves at all, but even if it did 8 bit files aren’t the best for your final mix…you think? The graphics in the demo are full featured. It’s definitely a useful demo (unless there’s more disabled than there used to be).

Quote (phoo @ Sep. 20 2005,11:17)
I use it regularly, though mostly as a tool to see where the problems are.

So did you go ahead and buy it? I mean I already do this with the demo version. Just wondered if you thought it was worth spalshing out for.

He bought it :)

Quote (woxnerw @ Sep. 20 2005,19:04)
I've been looking at this for some time, now.. How do you use it.. ?? On a per-track Basis? or do you use it on group mixes? Do you think it's worth the bucks?

Bill..

IIRC, it is stand alone only - they worked on a vst version of it, but ran into too many limitations. that's the only reason I have not bought it, really.
Quote (woxnerw @ Sep. 20 2005,19:04)
I've been looking at this for some time, now.. How do you use it.. ?? On a per-track Basis? or do you use it on group mixes? Do you think it's worth the bucks?

Bill..

It's a stand-alone program designed to be used as a mastering tool - to adjust the EQ of a single .wav file.

:cool:

Hi Guys:
I’ve read where they discontinued the development of a VST plug-in of this utility… They must have something they consider beyond the normal course of what a plugin does… or something… to go ahead with it as a stand alone devise…

Haveing said that I could see it as a utility where … after you create your tracks and have them grouped into say, Beds… Overdubs… Vocals… and .etc… then each group could be “Rendered” and “Mastered”. with this utility… then… Create a new Time-Line with the Rendered/Mastered/Grouped Tracks… and begin a new re-mix of the Song… ??? Well…

Instead of working with 20 plus tracks-or-so… you’re now working with 6-8 stereo tracks… Where Mixing-Outside-the-Box and outboard effects come into the MIX…

Bill…

Remember what Har-Bal does. It scans the whole file and shows a representation of the overall EQ of the whole file. It doesn’t take a small snapshot of a few samples. A plug-in can’t do what Har-Bal does in real time. It’s a different way of looking at the EQ. That said using it on individial tracks or groups is useful only up to a point since the idea is that as a whole song all the colors should be there and add up to a flat-ish response. Individual tracks and groups will be only part of the picture. Har-Bal is great to see what those parts are though. By looking at the bass and drums separately you can see if they are conflicting in the low end. Your ears might can hear it, but this way you can see it, because both might have strong peaks in the same place. That might be good or bad depending on the mix.

I’ve used it to find “trouble” in a track. Sometimes a sweep just doesn’t tell me what the probelm is: now I run Har-bal on the track and I can see where there peak or dip significant to cause a problem. I can the audition the change.
The program was designed to work on the entire song and even more to work on balancing/matching the sound of an entire album. I’ve used it quite successfully. As always, your ears have to make the final secision, but it is a visual guide for those of us whose ears are still “in training”