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Stereo, panning and masking questions
Old 23rd October 2007
Lives for gear
lord_bunny's Avatar

Stereo, panning and masking questions

This is my understanding of panning, and stereo as it relates to the real world. When I walk out of my control room to clean up cables, and I run a mix to hear how it will sound from another room, it's basically hitting me in mono as it bounces out of one room into another.

Even though it's hitting me in mono, it's my belief that all of my panning to unmask certain elements, giving everything it's own space from L to R still benefits me, regardless if it's being experienced essentially in mono. Is this true?

My thought is that as long as the playback system is in stereo, you'll still get the clarity that comes with panning two similar elements into the sides and leaving the vocal up the middle etc.

What I'm saying is: am I right to think that hearing a mix in stereo from the next room is preferable to a mono mix in the next room. Are we gaining clarity, or does stereo only help us when we're in close proximity to the stereo field?
Old 23rd October 2007
Gear Guru
Ethan Winer's Avatar

Originally Posted by lord_bunny View Post
am I right to think that hearing a mix in stereo from the next room is preferable to a mono mix in the next room.
I don't see why. Maybe the frequencies from one speaker will bounce around differently than from the other speaker, and arrive a bit later or whatever. But this is incredibly easy to test. So why not try it both ways and let us know what happens. heh

Old 24th October 2007
Lives for gear
bdmctear's Avatar

It would seem to me that there is a limit to how much of any given frequency one single speaker and amplifier can reproduce. By spreading similar frequencies in your mix across two speakers/amplifiers you increase clarity.

BUT, collapsing a mix to mono, ie ONE speaker, should shed light on phase relationships that might not be as apparent from the next room coming from two separate speakers.

I'd say listen in mono for phase, listen in stereo from the next room for clarity and separation.
Old 24th October 2007
"mono" with 2 speakers always sounds different than mono with one speaker.

i'll leave it up to you guys to figure out why.. it gives me a headache.
Old 24th October 2007
Lives for gear
lord_bunny's Avatar

thanks for the replies!

i was speaking more to the point about clarity. assuming a great mixer (not me) mixed the song, and all details are covered, my thought was that the final mix played back in stereo but heard in another room will still be clearer than the same mixed played back in mono.

i'll try it tomorrow morning when my ears haven't been working for 8 hours.
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