#1
Just typed out this huge guide for tabbing songs using Adobe Audition for someone here on UG, figured I'd make a thread about it to help everyone in their tabbing adventures


"As for tabbing, the first thing you should do if you haven't already is get a tabbing program. The most common obviously is Guitar Pro, but I use TabIt because it's the easiest to work with when tabbing because you can easily just shift notes left and right with the Insert and Delete keys without having to worry about note durations and all that bullshit. I ALWAYS use TabIt when tabbing a song, then if I feel like submitting it I just put it into Guitar Pro to appease the masses :p

As for using Adobe Audition, I just learned on my own by screwing around with it. I'm gonna type out a pretty detailed lesson though because that sucks haha. Ok, so rhythm guitars are almost always panned all the way to the left and right and solos are usually in the middle; the trick is to try and isolate them so they can be heard more clearly and eventually slowed down if necessary. Regardless of what I'm trying to isolate (rhythm or solo), I select the whole song or a part I'm trying to figure out and go to Effects > Stereo Imagery > Center Channel Extractor. Make sure the "Extract Audio From:" is always set to "Center" and then just move the "Center Channel Level" slider all the way to the right to isolate the middle of the stereo space for figuring out solos, or slide it to the left to remove the center channel (solos, drums, bass) and be left with pretty much just the rhythm guitars. It takes a lot of messing around with the "Discrimination Settings" to get the best sounding, least-distorted isolations possible; just **** around with the sliders until it sounds somewhat good. You can also use the "Frequency Range" to isolate certain frequencies; this is how I figure out bass (which is always in the center FYI). Don't touch the "Granularity and Resolution" options on the bottom, they're not important.

Once you have the guitars decently separated from the mix you can go about tabbing them. However a lot of times a riff will be too fast to accurately figure out each note at full speed. Luckily you can slow it down. Go to Effects > Time and Pitch > Stretch (process), select the "Double Speed" preset, then change the "Ratio" to 200 (I suggest then saving this as a new preset, such as "Half Speed"). This stretches out the wave so the riff or solo is half speed, but also lowers the pitch a complete octave as a result. For solos this usually isn't a problem because the notes are high (just remember when tabbing to tab an octave higher than you're playing), but for heavy riffs this might make them incoherent and unable to decipher. So, once you've stretched the wave go back again to Effects > Time and Pitch > Stretch (process), select the "Raise Pitch" preset, and change the "Transpose" option to 12#. This now raises everything an octave so you're left with the original riff/solo slowed down but at the correct pitch. Doing this two step process sounds much, much better than just using the "Slow Down" preset; don't bother with it because it doesn't work nearly as well.

However, even by doing it the "long way", what you're left with is still gonna sound pretty shitty; this is normal lol. You just have to try your best to figure out what each note is through the scratchy, distorted mess. It's a pain in the ass but if you select only a few notes at a time and just play it over and over again you'll be able to slowly piece together that riff or solo. By knowing the tempo and time signature of the part of the song you're tabbing, you can make this a lot easier. First, figure out the time signature just by listening to the part, and then use some basic math to help you find the tempo. Say the riff or solo is in 4/4, and it's 16 beats long (4 measures). By listening and visually using the wave peaks, highlight EXACTLY the full 16 beats, from the instant it starts to the instant it ends. Let's say this 16 beat section is 4.396 seconds long. Using basic math, (16 beats)/(4.396 sec) = 3.6397 beats/sec. Then, (3.6397 beats/sec) x (60 sec/1 min) = 218.38 beats/min. The tempo then is most likely 220 bpm (you can play back the song and tabbing program simultaneously later on to make sure the tempos are exact). You can divide the 4.396 seconds by 4 measures to get 1.099 sec/measure, or you can get 0.5495 sec/half-measure, etc., etc. If this riff is straight eighth notes, you know there'll be 4 notes in a 0.5495 second span. So start from the beginning and highlight 0.5495 seconds, figure out those 4 notes, then drag the beginning of the marker past the end marker to highlight the next 0.5495 second span immediately following it, figure out those 4 notes, then just repeat until done.

The whole process of tabbing is painstakingly long and hard, but with practice you can tab pretty much anything, regardless of your ability to play it. I most certainly can not play everything I tab, I don't have to be able to since TabIt does it for me lol. I really don't even practice songs that much, the main reason I tab is for analyzing songs' structures and scale compositions to give me new ideas for writing my own stuff. Usually I'll just tab certain sections of songs or whatever, but if I tab a complete song and feel like transcribing it into Guitar Pro I'll submit it to share my hard work with everyone else.

Anyways, hope this helps getting you started with tabbing. Any questions or problems feel free to ask me!"