How To: Upmix using Penteo and Reaper

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HomerJAU

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Old Quad Guy

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First draft of a new How To I just put together for a QQ member:

Version 1:
https://reva.blob.core.windows.net/mmh4/PDFs/How to Upmix using Penteo and Reaper.pdf

I hope this inspires some members to give this a try. Results are excellent. I have done close to 700 albums and a few concerts now.

Comments, suggestions etc as always welcome.

Garry
Wow, excellent work Gary with the detailed instructions. I urge everyone to download the PDF and read it. Guess I’ll be buying some tools here. Thanks.
 

HomerJAU

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I haven't used SpecWeb for a while and I know Glen has released new versions recently. But in my last tests SpecWeb had artifacts with certain sources, whereas Penteo didn't. Best to try both and compare for yourself. Personally I think Penteo is easier to use, with fewer configuration options.

There's $$ involved with Penteo but any user can get a great upmix.

As I said in the PDF Penteo, Reaper (and Izotope Ozone Imager, if you also try that) all have free trials, although you need to buy an iLok USB device for the Penteo trial. The iLok is around $50, but you can upmix a heap of albums in 14 days so you'd get your $50 worth for sure!! (and you could always sell it if needed and recover almost it all).
 

minimumtumbleweed

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I haven't used SpecWeb for a while and I know Glen has released new versions recently. But in my last tests SpecWeb had artifacts with certain sources, whereas Penteo didn't. Best to try both and compare for yourself. Personally I think Penteo is easier to use, with fewer configuration options.

There's $$ involved with Penteo but any user can get a great upmix.

As I said in the PDF Penteo, Reaper (and Izotope Ozone Imager, if you also try that) all have free trials, although you need to buy an iLok USB device for the Penteo trial. The iLok is around $50, but you can upmix a heap of albums in 14 days so you'd get your $50 worth for sure!! (and you could always sell it if needed and recover almost it all).
Sounds neat; I might have to give it a try. Thanks.
 

junh1024

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Are you planning on making a guide for freesurround & f2k ? It would be a much cheaper alternative, and as discussed elsewhere, can sound competitive.
 

HomerJAU

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No. I don’t use any other upmixer but others here are, of course, welcome to do How To posts for systems they use.
 

Mark Anderson

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I could use some help using the batch processor in reaper. When I installed Reaper and Penteo I was not able to get the plug in to export in multichannel. The most channels it will allow you to select is 4.0 but that yields a stereo recording with a center channel.
1624738452201.png


The batch process seems to be setup right
1624738513185.png


The Penteo channel assignment seems to be setup correctly
1624738641452.png


Some how I managed to get this corrected on the first day but have not been able to get it working since. However If I work outside of the batch processing Penteo works fine
1624738757020.png


So I have been playing with it doing individual songs.
If anyone has any ideas I would appreciate suggestions as I am not versed in Reaper at all. Any work I have done beyond upmixing in Reaper I switch to sound forge as I know it well
 

HomerJAU

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There’s a bug in latest version of Reaper Penteo just released. I will upload the previous version and PM you a link.

The new version does not allow selection of > 4 channel output. So I deleted it as I always do 4.1 upmixes using 5.1 setting and turning Centre off. That was a added ‘feature’ to correct channel order in a release in January (I think)

EDIT: I meant Penteo, not sure where my brain was when I typed Reaper
 
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Mark Anderson

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There’s a bug in latest version of Reaper just released. I will upload the previous version and PM you a link.

The new version does not allow selection of > 4 channel output. So I deleted it as I always do 4.1 upmixes using 5.1 setting and turning Centre off. That was a added ‘feature’ to correct channel order in a release in January (I think)
Thanks Gary, I do not know what we would do without around here. I should have some time tomorrow to play with it
 

zeerround

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Is it just the "old" issue of you needing to type in your own value, vs. it being available on the drop down?

Oh, tried it. Guess not. Does the Reaper Team know?
 
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jimfisheye

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iLok?! What year is it again? That's a blast from the past that I don't really want to revisit!

I have a project here that had scarce multitrack to begin with. A lot of live to two-track going on in the source recordings. And then some of the multitrack overdubs lost. Yeah...
Almost considering breaking down and seeing what some of these upmix plugins have to offer.

Any other recommendations for upmix plugins?

I was thinking of trying to get the old Protools rig running so I could run the old mix sans missing overdub tracks. Then null the difference out and at least have a stereo mix of the isolated overdubs. Or someone could just shoot me now!
 
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Mark Anderson

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I posted a bug report.
Thanks for taking the time to report the error. I downloaded reaper621_x64-install from January and that did not solve the problem.
I am finding that while it is more work that doing each song individually allows better adjustments for each song and while I did have the batch processing working and did 5 albums the levels were low and had to normalize to equal the original recording. So I will probably continue down that road but it would be nice to get the batch working for a time in need.
 

zeerround

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Perhaps you would like to add a mastering limiter to your effects chain (similar to what I do in SpecWeb)? Short of adjusting the controls by ear, it would be a multistep process.

1) Determine the loudness of the original stereo (LUFS VST or the SpecWeb \bin\ebur128_levels.exe program)

2) Determine the loudness of the upmix with no limiter (LUFS VST or the SpecWeb \bin\ebur128_levels.exe program) and calculate the difference from the stereo (upmix will be less loud)

3) Set the controls on your limiter such that the upmix, with limiter, results in the original stereo loudness. In the case of the Unlimited VST than comes with SpecWeb, this is just a matter of setting the threshold to the value of the difference in loudness between the upmix and the stereo.

You should be able to come within about 0.5 dB (inaudible difference) of the stereo loudness, using this technique.
 

HomerJAU

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See my edited post. The original issue is with latest Penteo (Install January Penteo to resolve). I don’t know why my fingers typed Reaper. I sent Mark the Jan Penteo installer.

I always batch convert and I’ve found keeping the Penteo input levels as zero gives very similar volume levels to original stereo. If volume needs increasing due to a quiet stereo version I increase gain of my Izotope Ozone plugin.

I always apply Replay Gain to the MCH files as the final step in my process.
 
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