Producer defends 'X-Factor' in autotune controversy

An award-winning record producer defended the 'X-Factor' today regarding claims that the TV talent show used technology to make some contestants' voices sound better.

An award-winning record producer defended the 'X-Factor' today regarding claims that the TV talent show used technology to make some contestants' voices sound better.

Furious viewers filled internet forums with complaints about the use of "autotuning" during the programme.

Some even threatened to boycott the show in protest at the alleged use of the studio technology used to correct pitch and off-key mistakes.

But Donal Hodgson, who won a Grammy for his work with Sting, said using it was perfectly acceptable as long as it was not a total "fabrication".

He said: "The issue would be if 'The X-Factor' was using it on people that really couldn't sing and making something that was a fabrication.

"I didn't see the show but I imagine if you have a lot of young people who have never sung live on stage before then they will sing out of tune.

"They won't be used to monitors and hearing their own voices coming back to them so they would be more likely to sing out of tune.

"Of course, if 'The X-Factor' fabricated the whole thing it would be self-defeating and they would end up with someone who couldn't sing."

Most of the allegations surrounded teenage contestant Gamu Nhengu, who sang a version of the Katrina And The Waves hit 'Walking On Sunshine'.

After hearing her effort, judge Simon Cowell told the 18-year-old, from Clackmannanshire, Scotland, she was "really talented" before she was unanimously voted through to the next round.

But some viewers went online to accuse the producers of using autotune.

On the show's website, robhayes wrote: "Absolutely disgusting use of... autotune... does X Factor really think we are idiots? I see the idea of making the show more entertaining, but this is taking the mick... really..."

Smstrat91 added: "Cannot believe they autotuned her, listen to the words 'door' and 'telephone' and it's very clear. She's so good as well, but obviously the producers of X Factor didn't think she was good enough."

Similar accusations were made about another contestant, G and S singer Caroline, who also made it through to round two.

A spokesman for 'The X-Factor' said post-production work was necessary due to the number of microphones used during filming.

"The judges make their decisions at the auditions stage based on what they hear on the day, live in the arena.

"The footage and sound is then edited and dubbed into a finished programme, to deliver the most entertaining experience possible for viewers."

Last year's show was hit by a miming row after judge Cheryl Cole partly mimed her debut solo single during an episode.

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