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Auto-Tune Tutorial – Get Better Results

AutoTune Tutorial

Antares Auto-Tune has become an indispensable part of professional vocal and instrument editing. And hardly any other plugin is so controversial. Some love it and others hate it. You can use the effect subtly or in typical Cher Autotune effect manner.

The pitch editing software contains many parameters that must first be understood. In this Auto-Tune tutorial I would like to explain the individual setting options to you.

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Set Auto-Tune

First of all, Auto-Tune divides itself into four rough sections:

  • Input settings
  • Pitch correction control
  • Create vibrato
  • MIDI

If you don’t feel like reading, you can also watch the video explaining the most important parameters.

Input Settings

The first thing you do with the Auto-Tune Input settings is to specify what kind of audio material you are dealing with.

Input Type

This is where you set which voice pitch it is. This allows the plugin to better identify the audio signal being processed. The following are available for selection:

  • Soprano
  • Alto/Tenor
  • Low Male
  • Bass
  • Instrument

Depending on the vocal range of the singer, you set this. Soprano stands for a high female voice. Alto/Tenor for a low female or male voice and Low Male for a low female voice. For instruments, you can choose between bass and general instrument settings.

AUTO-TUNE SCALE SETTING

Auto-Tune Input type

Tracking

When tracking, you can tell the program whether the recordings are crosstalk or clean. Crosstalk can occur in live recordings, for example. Whispered or noisy signals can be critical in general. These can be badly interpreted by Autotune.

To be able to analyze them better, you have the choice between a relaxed and a choosey setting. The value can be set between 0 and 100. The more “noisy” the signal is, the more you should set the pot to the right.

For normal vocal recordings without background noise you can ignore this parameter!

Key / Scale

At this point the scale can be set. Under Scale you can choose between 29 scales.

  • Major
  • Minor
  • Ling Lun
  • Greek chr
  • Indian
  • Arabic
  • etc.

It is essential that the scale is set correctly. Otherwise, errors will occur during editing. The plugin cannot automatically detect the target tones, you just have to assign them.

Scale Detune

If the instrumental or the remaining instruments of a song deviate from the western pitch of 440 Hz, this can be adjusted under Scale Detune. In most cases, the concert pitch should be tuned to 440 Hz.

Pitch Correction Control (Auto-Tune Effect)

If you want to make Auto-Tune sound good, you should primarily deal with the Pitch Correction Control section. It doesn’t matter if you want the present Autontune effect a la Cher or T-Pain or a subtle pitch correction working in the background.

Auto-Tune pitch correction

Retune Speed

Besides the scale setting, Retune Speed is probably the most important parameter within the plugin. With this you can set the speed at which Auto-Tune should tune the missed note. The input takes place in milliseconds.

A fast input of below 10 ms leads to a classic Auto-Tune effect. For a natural pitch correction, a setting around 50 ms is recommended.

Correction Style

With the Correction Style you can set the tolerance for the pitch correction. A “Classic” setting of 0 results in the missed notes being pulled hard onto the grid. The naturalness of the sound suffers from this. However, this effect may be desired if you want to achieve the typical synthetic Autotune effect.

For a more natural pitch correction, a medium setting on Flex-Tune is recommended. This allows the notes to glide more smoothly onto the target note, or to not be 100% quantized to the grid.

Humanize

Auto-Tune processes long and short notes differently. As a result, short notes are not taken into account if the retune speed is slow, and long notes may be processed too much if the retune speed is short. The Humanize function can be used to solve this problem. The higher the setting of the parameter, the higher the Retune Speed for long notes. The parameter thus serves to create a natural sound.

Vibrato

This can be used to limit and amplify existing vibrato. To the left, the vibrato is minimized. Especially for inexperienced singers, reducing the vibrato can help to achieve a more pleasant sound. Unlike the other parameters from this section, this one is not directly related to each other. This means that the vibrato setting does not affect any other parameter such as Retune Speed, etc.

Targeting ignores Vibrato

These parameters can only be switched on or off. When this function is turned on, the vibrato of a note is not tuned separately, but is oriented to the actual note. This in turn can help to create a more natural sound.

Create Vibrato

With Antares Auto-Tune an artificial vibrato can be added. It is important to know that the following settings become ineffective if you set a Retune Speed of 0!

Auto-Tune vibrato

Shape

First things first. If no waveform is selected, there is no artificial vibrato. There are three waveforms to choose from.

  • Sinus
  • Square
  • Sawtooth

Sinus

With a sine wave, the wave changes smoothly and evenly from the minimum to the maximum state. If you want to keep the artificial vibrato as natural as possible, you should use this setting.

Square

Unlike the sine wave, the state does not change smoothly, but it jumps directly from the maximum state to the minimum one, reaching only 50% of the power compared to the sine wave.

Sawtooth

The sawtooth wave rises steeply from the minimum to the maximum state and then falls abruptly back to the minimum.

Rate

The rate determines in which speed the selected wave oscillates.

Variation

The variation can be used to make the vibrato more natural. This parameter is directly related to the rate. By setting the variation, the rate is shifted randomly. The higher this value is set, the more varied the random mechanism becomes.

Onset Delay

The parameters are added and describe how long and when the vibrato should start.

The Onset Delay determines when the artificial vibrato should start after the sound has begun. This setting is defined in milliseconds.

Pitch Amount

This allows you to set the pitch deviation. The value is given in cents. 100 cents is a semitone. For example, if you select 100, the vibrato will swing up and down a half tone.

Amplitude Amount

This value controls the volume differences within the artificial vibrato. For realistic vibratos, the value should be smaller than the Pitch Amount.

Formant Amount

The Formant Amount changes the timbre of the vibrato.

Set Classic Autotune Effect

As already mentioned, the classic Autotune effect is set with the Retune Speed. It is important that the scale is set correctly! The Correction Style should be set to 0.

  • Retune Speed: less than 10
  • Correction Style: 0

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