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Mix chain: Juggernaut Twin - Great River EQ - API 2500 - Neve 5042
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Bayou Fabulous
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#1
30th December 2011
Old 30th December 2011
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Mix chain: Juggernaut Twin - Great River EQ - API 2500 - Neve 5042

I'm getting ready to mix my next record... it's my first in about seven years (that hurts to say) and is likely to be the last one I do for several more! I have a 24-channel passive summing mixer and RADAR classic converters. Whatever I mix through will be going back to a stereo Weiss A/D converter that is really sweet. I got some great drum tones on the way in using A-Designs pres and also some tracks with a PM-1000 where I took direct outs (which I added myself with Tamura output transformers) and also did a mono submix through the main outs (with Cinemag transformers) and a UA BL-40 limiter. That mono drum tracks sounds great, man! Surprising how cool it is.... putting that up the middle and using the individual tracks too....

But, anyway, my question is what steps in this chain you would consider the most vital, or the most fun, or the most bang for the buck, you know? I have the Neve 5042 tape emulator already and so far have mixed through my GML pres and then that unit. It sounds spacious and there's the tape-like impact..... but it doesn't have that sort of golden hugeness I'm looking for. It already sounds completely different than mixing in the box..... so much more depth of field. But we knew that....

I'm looking at getting the juggernaut twin for make-up gain.... it seems the perfect choice. I think all the features combined with the variable impedance (handled in a really pro way) will make it unbeatable in that role.

I dont' think I can afford to get an EQ, like the Great River EQ-2NV (or the MAQ-2NV), and a stereo compressor, like the API 2500. Of course I want both. I need both! I hear myself tweaking those frequencies and crafting things while adding super vibe with the Great River.... and I hear that API 2500 pulling things together while putting them right up front, not overdoing it but pulling that snare right into place, making everything gel in that API way....

I can't afford all 3 of these things. I could sell some of my most crucial mics and get them, maybe..... and then beat my head against the wall during the next full session I have to do. Part of me feels I can leave the compression until mastering.... but I won't be as hands on with that....

Any thoughts? If you had to choose the most crucial thing to mix an album through that's had years of input going in already, which way would you go? I need world-class compression and EQ but I can't see compromising on either one and can't afford both. Can you hear me trying to convince myself to drop 6-7K that I don't have on these things?

Thanks for any thoughts..... maybe someone has the perfect answer....
#2
31st December 2011
Old 31st December 2011
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I would stick with the GML for your clean wide make up gain and add a nice vibey compressor. Check out something like a Thermionic Phoenix. (or Tube Tech, DW Fearn, Rockruepel etc.)
#3
31st December 2011
Old 31st December 2011
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About a month ago I had to send my eq2nv to Dan Kennedy for repairs ( a knob got sheared off during a remote session,arrrrrgh) and had to live without analog eq for about 2 weeks. It was so hard to get that same depth and warmth to my satisfaction with digi eq's, that I decided to wait til the eq2nv got fixed ( clients were understanding!).When I got the eq2nv back, thanks to Dan's OUTSTANDING customer service, I plugged her in and all that depth, width, warmth and whatever mojo the eq brings was back and I was back in my comfort zone making quick and correct decisions.
I used to think that digi eq had caught up to their hardware counterparts but this experience taught me otherwise.
I'd say go for the eq and check out the RNC or their PBc6a for good sounding compression on a budget. I've never worked with the PB6a but it gets raves around here.
#4
2nd January 2012
Old 2nd January 2012
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I have done exactly the same reasoning as you to decide between this or that. I ended up going for a tube eq, a Gyraf G14 and a Electronaut m63. The compressor have to wait but thinking of doing a drip comp...

Anyway, the g14 has arrived and is just incredible. I'd call it a widenizer, spatializer, recordializer etc. And of course a fantastic eq. ...no plug comes even close. However this has wetted my appetite for hardware and I am longing for inserting a drip 670/2500/rnd mbp.
#5
2nd January 2012
Old 2nd January 2012
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Sonically there are many reasons to get the gear on your list, but you'll be better off in life if you don't spend money you don't have. If you don't plan to use the stuff on a daily or weekly basis, just rent it when you need it or get by with what you already have.

I understand your position as a musician that self-produces. This record probably means the world to you, but you need to take the emotion out of this purely technical decision. Money seems to be an issue here, and you brought it up first which is the reason I'm addressing it. If you are look at it from a business standpoint the decision is simple.

Establish a relationship with a great mastering engineer that shares your aesthetic and understands your goals. There are plenty of fantastic mastering studios that have what you are looking for (times ten). You will also benefit from their fresh perspective when they treat your mixes. I think you will be ahead if you get your balances and emotional content right and give a trusted mastering engineer some room to work on the final presentation. It will also feel a lot nicer if you can walk into the mastering studio 7 grand richer...
#6
3rd January 2012
Old 3rd January 2012
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tedma is offline
Quote:
Originally Posted by mark714 View Post
Sonically there are many reasons to get the gear on your list, but you'll be better off in life if you don't spend money you don't have. If you don't plan to use the stuff on a daily or weekly basis, just rent it when you need it or get by with what you already have.

I understand your position as a musician that self-produces. This record probably means the world to you, but you need to take the emotion out of this purely technical decision. Money seems to be an issue here, and you brought it up first which is the reason I'm addressing it. If you are look at it from a business standpoint the decision is simple.

Establish a relationship with a great mastering engineer that shares your aesthetic and understands your goals. There are plenty of fantastic mastering studios that have what you are looking for (times ten). You will also benefit from their fresh perspective when they treat your mixes. I think you will be ahead if you get your balances and emotional content right and give a trusted mastering engineer some room to work on the final presentation. It will also feel a lot nicer if you can walk into the mastering studio 7 grand richer...
Solid. Really solid.
Bayou Fabulous
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#7
4th January 2012
Old 4th January 2012
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Thanks for all the thoughts and advice....

Interestingly, these replies all lean in different directions and I appreciate all of them.

I mixed some more tracks through the GMLs today and I just don't think they're gonna bring me what I need at that crucial stage. They might work on some very sparse acoustic material but I really don't think I can get the right thing happening for the heavier stuff with hard-hitting drums.... As it is, the GMLs are bringing me the clarity of mixing out of the box but not giving me any of the console-like vibe that is also part of why I want to mix out of the box. (Or, at least not any of the consoles I want!)

I appreciate the advice about working with a mastering engineer..... I definitely feel that and will take that to heart. To me, that means not worrying about EQ and compression at this stage and letting someone who really knows that world, and has the gear, make the magic happen. I get that, for sure!

But, I do think I'm gonna have to get a dual mic pre for make-up gain that at least gets the mix into the territory where mastering can take it up a notch or more....

For now, I'm thinking Juggernaut Twin, Aurora GTQ2, or Great River MP-2NV.

I'm still leaning towards Juggernaut for all the versatility..... but the GTQ2 has the EQ and has such a high reputation it's hard to imagine not being really thrilled with it..... more of a known quantity and one that people seem to feel unanimously thrilled with...

Thanks again for your replies..... any more would be welcome!
#8
18th January 2012
Old 18th January 2012
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I recently got a Juggernaut Twin and it is a very nice Pre for mixing through. Many variations to chose from. The Iron output Tranny can give you a real nice console type vibe. And it has Balanced XLR Line in's which makes setup a breeze.
Having said that. I use the API 2500 as my main mixing Comp. It seems to just have the right Color I am looking for.
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