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I need help with my mix. Still learning.
Old 6th July 2009
  #1
Gear Head
 
Big Spin's Avatar
 

I need help with my mix. Still learning.

So I need some guidance on one of my mixes. I think it sounds pretty cluttered and busy. Im pretty young and pretty new to pro tools, recording, and the likes of such. I feel that this whole mix is a lost cause and I should just start over, but I figured before i do that I should ask if I can take it to the next level without starting over. I appreciate any and all comments greatly. I am so grateful for gearslutz and what it contains! Thank you so very much for all of your help
Attached Files

2 Weeks2mp3.mp3 (5.90 MB, 327 views)

Old 6th July 2009
  #2
Gear Head
 
Big Spin's Avatar
 

just realized that I shouldve posted this in the advice/upload forum. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Thanks again
Old 6th July 2009
  #3
Lives for gear
 
Crash's Avatar
Turn your drums up.... It seems guitar heavy to me. Pitchy vocals. I like it though....
Old 6th July 2009
  #4
Gear Nut
 

Too much "small room"-sound on the drums. Try to get rid of that and make them sound BIG, use reverb, compressors and eq.
Pan your guitars more. Vocals are ok, the biggest problem with this mix is the drums.

How did you record your guitars? They don't sound so natural and real.
Old 6th July 2009
  #5
Gear Head
 
Big Spin's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by crille View Post
Too much "small room"-sound on the drums. Try to get rid of that and make them sound BIG, use reverb, compressors and eq.
Pan your guitars more. Vocals are ok, the biggest problem with this mix is the drums.

How did you record your guitars? They don't sound so natural and real.
cool thanks for the help. All of the guitars dont sound natural because they aren't, LOL. ALL of the guitar parts were recorded DI with sans amp. Would it benefit the mix if I were to get rid of a couple of the sans amp tracks and add some REAL tracks, using marshall and 57 (or SM7)

Thanks again.
Old 6th July 2009
  #6
Gear Head
 
Big Spin's Avatar
 

thats so funny. after you mentioned the small room problem on the drums i listened to it again and now all i can hear is the room. Its driving me nuts now LOL, very cool. Thanks a lot for making that clear to me. makes sense. the room that the drums were tracked in is pretty small (10 x 20 give or take) not to mention the room is dead. Its pretty heavy carpeted. My neighbors house is almost touching my studio so I had to do my best with what money I had. But, yeah, thanks again for pointing that out. Pretty darn helpful indeed.

Last edited by Big Spin; 6th July 2009 at 08:24 PM.. Reason: typo
Old 7th July 2009
  #7
hm you might want to try parallel compression with the drums to get them louder

and also compress that snare harder!

and the kick!

the rest sound pretty good

ps. i didn't realize those weren't real guitar until i read the thread lul
Old 7th July 2009
  #8
RTR
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RTR's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe View Post
hm you might want to try parallel compression with the drums to get them louder

and also compress that snare harder!

and the kick!

the rest sound pretty good

ps. i didn't realize those weren't real guitar until i read the thread lul
I think useing parallel compression on these drums would only bring out more of the ROOM sound that is not wanted!
Old 7th July 2009
  #9
Gear Head
 
Big Spin's Avatar
 

yeah I already am using some parallel compression on the drums and that is probably the reason there is so much room tone. When you guys use parallel compression do you usually smash it? What ratios are you using? I had the parallel compression at like a 5:1 ratio I think with like 4-6 db of GR happening and I had that fader riding up pretty high. I take it since i have such a crappy room I should ditch the parallel compression completely but lets say I was in a nice room, should I be using a higher ratio and quicker attack?

Thanks
Old 7th July 2009
  #10
Lives for gear
 
Weasel9992's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Spin View Post
thats so funny. after you mentioned the small room problem on the drums i listened to it again and now all i can hear is the room. Its driving me nuts now LOL, very cool. Thanks a lot for making that clear to me. makes sense. the room that the drums were tracked in is pretty small (10 x 20 give or take) not to mention the room is dead. Its pretty heavy carpeted. My neighbors house is almost touching my studio so I had to do my best with what money I had. But, yeah, thanks again for pointing that out. Pretty darn helpful indeed.
I wish all the people who are convinced they want a "live" sound in their 12x15 rooms would read this post. "Dead" is the only option in a room this size. I will point out though that having a carpeted room with curtains over the windows does not make it "dead" in a balanced sense...that makes it dead in the high end and live as hell from about 700Hz on down. "Dead" means short but balanced decay times across the frequency spectrum...if you can get that, then there are a bunch of ways to massage some space into the tracks.

Frank
Old 7th July 2009
  #11
Gear Nut
Drums are the biggest offender, especially when snare is naked in the mix. You could always turn it into a piccolo-type snare (think 311), but it doesn't sound like that's what you're going for. Have you tried adding a snare sample to the arrangement? It could thicken it up a bit.

Don't know what the spectral content of the drum room mic track is, but EQing that and adjusting level could help.

Nice EQ sweeps.. guitars and vox sound good.
Old 8th July 2009
  #12
what about some drum replacement for the snare and kick

just an idea!

and maybe you can also add some room reverb on the overheads so you can get a bigger room sound
Old 8th July 2009
  #13
Gear Head
 
Big Spin's Avatar
 

Very cool thanks. I will be putting all of this valuable info to use when I get at it again tomorrow. I try to avoid replacing the drums most of the time, but I will try tomorrow, after listening to it though, I think everything will be ok if I just compress the snare a bit harder and bring it up more with some eq. If that brings the room up more (which now that I think about it, why wouldnt it?) then i will just replace it.

Thanks for that info Frank. Its kind of hard not to hear the room in a lot of the things I track in there. The drums sound nice with nothing added to them but as soon as an ounce of compression gets added things get ugly.
Old 8th July 2009
  #14
The Drums Sound Too Small...Reverb Will Help For Sure. Also you should add a little bit more reverb on the Vocals & maybe a little chorus to fatten it up(be conservative!), and also Compress the vocal track a little more & lower the level of the vocals in the mix, they are a bit too loud. The Snare Sounds Dull. Give The Snare More Pop by adding more high EQ. YOU DON'T NEED TO REPLACE THE DRUMS WITH ANY SAMPLES! Compress the bass guitar some more and throw a little high & mid on the bass guitar. You DEFINITELY should bring the kick drum up, I can't hear what its doing! Also, you should add a little high frequency to the master buss because this sounds a bit muddy.(But don't go overboard on adding highs, then it will sound tinny. Be Very Conservative!)

Give Me Your Comments!
Old 8th July 2009
  #15
Gear Head
 
Big Spin's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by reggiesears View Post
The Drums Sound Too Small...Reverb Will Help For Sure. Also you should add a little bit more reverb on the Vocals & maybe a little chorus to fatten it up(be conservative!), and also Compress the vocal track a little more & lower the level of the vocals in the mix, they are a bit too loud. The Snare Sounds Dull. Give The Snare More Pop by adding more high EQ. YOU DON'T NEED TO REPLACE THE DRUMS WITH ANY SAMPLES! Compress the bass guitar some more and throw a little high & mid on the bass guitar. You DEFINITELY should bring the kick drum up, I can't hear what its doing! Also, you should add a little high frequency to the master buss because this sounds a bit muddy.(But don't go overboard on adding highs, then it will sound tinny. Be Very Conservative!)

Give Me Your Comments!
Awesome thank you. Yesterday I added a lot more compression to the vocals and that helped a lot. I tried to bring up the highs a bit with the eq on the master but all that seems to do is make the hi hat very annoying. Maybe im adding too much, but I brought down the lows with eq and that seemed to helped a bit. Im still getting the snare right though. Only the top of the snare was micd. I definitely learned from that mistake. Im glad you dont think I need to replace the drums, I cant get the sound of replaced drums on the radio out of my head. I cant wait to try the chorus on the vocal idea, that sounds great. I will try to get it nice and pretty today with all of these new ideas and post it up later.

Thanks a million
Old 8th July 2009
  #16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Spin View Post
Awesome thank you. Yesterday I added a lot more compression to the vocals and that helped a lot. I tried to bring up the highs a bit with the eq on the master but all that seems to do is make the hi hat very annoying. Maybe im adding too much, but I brought down the lows with eq and that seemed to helped a bit. Im still getting the snare right though. Only the top of the snare was micd. I definitely learned from that mistake. Im glad you dont think I need to replace the drums, I cant get the sound of replaced drums on the radio out of my head. I cant wait to try the chorus on the vocal idea, that sounds great. I will try to get it nice and pretty today with all of these new ideas and post it up later.

Thanks a million
Oh Yea Dude, If Bringing Up The Highs on the Master Buss makes the hi hat sizzle, then you might want to add a touch of De-Ess to the cut the highest frequency of the hi-hat, but again, be VERY sensitive when applying any kind of effects such as. You might also want to take some of the sizzle out of the hi hat by shelving sum of the highs on the hi hat. I understand how the hi hat will sound "annoying" when you add highs on the master. BUT, you Don't Want the whole mix sounding muddy...you want some highs on the EQ buss. Also, Give That Snare some Mid-Highs & be very sensitive to highs...and play around with that Attack/Release setting on the compressor.
Old 8th July 2009
  #17
Gear Head
 
Big Spin's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by reggiesears View Post
Oh Yea Dude, If Bringing Up The Highs on the Master Buss makes the hi hat sizzle, then you might want to add a touch of De-Ess to the cut the highest frequency of the hi-hat, but again, be VERY sensitive when applying any kind of effects such as. You might also want to take some of the sizzle out of the hi hat by shelving sum of the highs on the hi hat. I understand how the hi hat will sound "annoying" when you add highs on the master. BUT, you Don't Want the whole mix sounding muddy...you want some highs on the EQ buss. Also, Give That Snare some Mid-Highs & be very sensitive to highs...and play around with that Attack/Release setting on the compressor.
Sounds great! Thanks a lot for the help. De esser on hi hat sounds like a swell idea
Old 8th July 2009
  #18
Here for the gear
 
costis's Avatar
 

I enjoyed the track. I find that the vocals sit nice in the mix.

For making the mix better you can consider the following.
  • The drums for some reason sounding very close miced. You could have some condenser room mic to capture the ambiance and then compress it to bring the air out.
  • The snare is missing the crack. Maybe you EQed it in a weird way or the mic placement didn't capture a rock snare. Before you touch the EQ you have to listen how things sound in the room. If you don't like something try tuning the drum kit, change the snare or place the mics in a different way.
  • There was a luck of low end in your track.
  • The spacing and stereo image wasn't very obvious and also I find that you could be a lot more creative with the effects you used. Mixing is fun so should your effects be.
  • The mix was a bit static and there was no Woomf. Maybe due to extreme overall compression values. Try to relax the buss compressor a bit and make it more airy.
  • I also found that the hihats were too loud.
  • The guitars in the intro were a bit too toppy. They made me jump from my chair.
Overall I am impressed with your work considering that you are quite young in this field.
Old 8th July 2009
  #19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Spin View Post
Sounds great! Thanks a lot for the help. De esser on hi hat sounds like a swell idea

No Problemo Dude

Let Me Know How It Works Out! And Of Course, We Wanna Hear Another Mix!!
Old 8th July 2009
  #20
Gear Head
 
Big Spin's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by costis View Post
I enjoyed the track. I find that the vocals sit nice in the mix.

For making the mix better you can consider the following.
  • The drums for some reason sounding very close miced. You could have some condenser room mic to capture the ambiance and then compress it to bring the air out.
  • The snare is missing the crack. Maybe you EQed it in a weird way or the mic placement didn't capture a rock snare. Before you touch the EQ you have to listen how things sound in the room. If you don't like something try tuning the drum kit, change the snare or place the mics in a different way.
  • There was a luck of low end in your track.
  • The spacing and stereo image wasn't very obvious and also I find that you could be a lot more creative with the effects you used. Mixing is fun so should your effects be.
  • The mix was a bit static and there was no Woomf. Maybe due to extreme overall compression values. Try to relax the buss compressor a bit and make it more airy.
  • I also found that the hihats were too loud.
  • The guitars in the intro were a bit too toppy. They made me jump from my chair.
Overall I am impressed with your work considering that you are quite young in this field.
thanks a lot. Thats very helpful. I think the reason there is a lack of crack in the snare is because I didnt mic the bottom (ugggghhhh) Ill never make the same mistake again. Im trying to toy with that crazy hi hat now but im not having much luck. I think my overall mic placement sucked and Im getting a lot of hi hat in the over heads. I can turn the hi hat track all the way down and its still loud in the over heads ....Im almost done with another mix Ill post it up in a minute. I really appreciate all of this help though. Thanks guys!
Old 8th July 2009
  #21
Lives for gear
 
Weasel9992's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Spin View Post
thanks a lot. Thats very helpful. I think the reason there is a lack of crack in the snare is because I didnt mic the bottom (ugggghhhh) Ill never make the same mistake again.
No, that's not it. You should be able to get plenty of smack on that snare with a good preamp and an SM57. You've either got mics that aren't playing nice from a phase standpoint or it's a simple matter of the low end decay times in the tracking space being 10 times longer than the high-mid decay times...so your snare crack is lost in the lower resonances of the drum. I'm not saying that mic'ing the bottom of a snare is a bad idea...it can work well, though I personally don't do it.

Frank
Old 8th July 2009
  #22
Gear Head
 
Big Spin's Avatar
 

ok so Im still not totally psyched about this mix but i think ive got it to the point where I can at least live with it. It still sounds like it was recorded by a noob, but i think its the best I can do at this time. any further thoughts, comments, or suggestions are accepted and appreciated, as always. Thanks
Attached Files

2 weeks 3.mp3 (5.91 MB, 130 views)

Old 8th July 2009
  #23
Lives for gear
 
superiorsound's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Spin View Post
So I need some guidance on one of my mixes. I think it sounds pretty cluttered and busy. Im pretty young and pretty new to pro tools, recording, and the likes of such. I feel that this whole mix is a lost cause and I should just start over, but I figured before i do that I should ask if I can take it to the next level without starting over. I appreciate any and all comments greatly. I am so grateful for gearslutz and what it contains! Thank you so very much for all of your help
I think it sounds pretty good. guitar sounds great I would work on those drums a bit more and I think to voxs could use a little love. When I hear tracks like this I immidiately think of a heavy drum track but overall sounds great Im no expert just a second set of ears forever evolving. Keep up the good work youll get there. Drum replacement might be an option bussed to an 1176 plug pump and breath if you got it.
Old 8th July 2009
  #24
Here for the gear
 
costis's Avatar
 

I am writing while I am listening to it.

Better, a lot better.

The bass needs work. Guitars sound hanging by themselves without the bass. Also you should fix couple of breaks that didn't work in time. Bass drum has been sunk in the mix. The Woomf is missing again. Maybe you have some phasing in the drum parts and make the overall bass disappear.

Cross-reference with some CDs. Don't get disappointed. Work on it.
Old 8th July 2009
  #25
Quote:
Originally Posted by costis View Post
I am writing while I am listening to it.

Better, a lot better.

The bass needs work. Guitars sound hanging by themselves without the bass. Also you should fix couple of breaks that didn't work in time. Bass drum has been sunk in the mix. The Woomf is missing again. Maybe you have some phasing in the drum parts and make the overall bass disappear.

Cross-reference with some CDs. Don't get disappointed. Work on it.
i concur

the kicks gotta be a lot louder and the snare needs more compression

for some reason the toms sound great though!
Old 8th July 2009
  #26
Gear Head
 
Big Spin's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by alehoe View Post
i concur

the kicks gotta be a lot louder and the snare needs more compression

for some reason the toms sound great though!
HAHA so funny that you mentioned the toms. When i was bouncing it out i was listening to the drums and I heard one of the fills and I was in awe. I was like holy crap where did that come from. I guess it was just because i brought the overall level of the drums up. Ill mess around more with the low end stuff tomorrow. I think my problem there is the room that im mixing in. Theres a weird low end thing in there. When i am sitting in what is supposed to be the "sweet spot" theres a huge lack of low end but when back up about 3 or 4 feet I hear tons of nice fat low end. The room isnt treated at all though and my monitors are right up next to the back wall of the studio. Thanks a lot for your guys' help though. I wasnt expecting so much of it. very cool everybody! Thanks so much.
Old 9th July 2009
  #27
Gear Head
 
Big Spin's Avatar
 

so if anyone is still interested I think I finally got it! I think the drums could still sound a wee bit better but I think that the remaining issues with them is due to poor tracking. any more opinions are appreciated.

Thanks
Attached Files

2 Weeks hi dwnmp3.mp3 (5.91 MB, 117 views)

Old 9th July 2009
  #28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Spin View Post
HAHA so funny that you mentioned the toms. When i was bouncing it out i was listening to the drums and I heard one of the fills and I was in awe. I was like holy crap where did that come from. I guess it was just because i brought the overall level of the drums up. Ill mess around more with the low end stuff tomorrow. I think my problem there is the room that im mixing in. Theres a weird low end thing in there. When i am sitting in what is supposed to be the "sweet spot" theres a huge lack of low end but when back up about 3 or 4 feet I hear tons of nice fat low end. The room isnt treated at all though and my monitors are right up next to the back wall of the studio. Thanks a lot for your guys' help though. I wasnt expecting so much of it. very cool everybody! Thanks so much.

you could try hanging moving blankets or duvets up on the walls
Old 9th July 2009
  #29
Lives for gear
 

its sounding better but the snare isnt sitting in the mix. i'd maybe mix the original with a sample. maybe put the original under the sample to help it cut through the mix. right now im hearing the snare ontop of everything. guitars and vocals sound good. the overheads and snare are just poking through a little much.
Old 9th July 2009
  #30
Quote:
Originally Posted by sevendaysoff View Post
its sounding better but the snare isnt sitting in the mix. i'd maybe mix the original with a sample. maybe put the original under the sample to help it cut through the mix. right now im hearing the snare ontop of everything. guitars and vocals sound good. the overheads and snare are just poking through a little much.
i think it need a boost on the low mids and a lot more compression
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