SEPTEMBER 2012 IN
RICK ASTER’S WORLD
Pitch correction is widely used to make singers sound like they are more in tune than they really are. It is an area of technology that has seen no major breakthroughs in the last 16 years, yet the incremental improvements have made pitch correction more common than you might realize. Current pitch correction is more accurate and can be more subtle than it was a decade ago, and if it is used artfully, there is no way for the listener to tell that they are listening to a pitch-corrected vocal track.
Pitch correction has become so easy to use that it is a routine part of the recording process for group singing on pop records. It is simply easier to record a vocal group one singer at a time and pitch-correct than it is to sing in tune in the first place. A vocal group may consist of eight heavily pitch-corrected tracks and two lightly pitch-corrected tracks. This can be done quickly and provides a combination of accurate pitch and realism.
Pitch correction for featured single voices is trickier, but here too, the pitch correction effect can be hidden to create the illusion that you are just listening to a singing voice. In the last two years, pitch correction boxes have become accurate enough that they can be used on lead vocals in live concerts without being noticeable to the audience.
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