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Bass, bass, bass, it's always the bass... Studio Headphones
Old 26th February 2007
  #1
Lives for gear
 
Mike Jasper's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
Bass, bass, bass, it's always the bass...

Kevin --

My biggest problem in every mix is how much bass guitar to bring up. I don't know if there's an answer to this. It might just be one of those feel things, and some people got the right feel and some don't, but it's a constant mystery to me.

I know you've touched on this in part, but maybe you have insights into this. Or maybe I'm the only one who has this problem.

Jasper
Old 27th February 2007
  #2
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elswhrco's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Jasper View Post
Kevin --

My biggest problem in every mix is how much bass guitar to bring up. I don't know if there's an answer to this. It might just be one of those feel things, and some people got the right feel and some don't, but it's a constant mystery to me.

I know you've touched on this in part, but maybe you have insights into this. Or maybe I'm the only one who has this problem.

Jasper
Yes - this is something I'd like to hear some tips on too.
Old 27th February 2007
  #3
engineer / producer / mixer
 
Kevin Killen's Avatar
 

Mike,

I think ultimately it is a taste issue. Some people like a dominant bass presence and some do not. I am not sure where you taste lies but I found it helpful to reference my favorite songs in the studio as I am mixing with respect to the bass level and then see if my particular project can support such a level.

The second concern would be your monitoring environment. If this is inaccurate then its almost impossible to get the proper bass balance. Assuming that is close will make it easierr to get a handle on your own taste requiremnents

Kevin
Old 28th February 2007
  #4
Lives for gear
 
Mike Jasper's Avatar
 

Thread Starter
I think inaccurate monitoring might be part of the problem. I just never hear the bass as well over my monitors as I do later on.

As to taste, well that depends on the genre. But I will say Entwistle earned his rep.

Thanks Kevin,

Jasper
Old 3rd March 2007
  #5
Gear Guru
 
FFTT's Avatar
 

Hi Kevin,

It's an honor to have you here and your time is greatly appreciated.

I'd be interested in your advice on a few tricks in balancing the bass and the kick drum so they work together to drive the song without pushing smaller speakers too hard.

I'm a huge Peter Gabriel fan and have always admired Tony's ability to get that perfect bass part and tone.

I'm not sure if you've had the opportunity to work with Tony or not, but I consider him to be one of the masters.

The trouble is attempting to re-create that quality on a poor man's home studio budget.

My '64 Jazz Bass is definitely a recording sweetheart, but I always wonder if there's
a better way to bring out the best.

The only reference I have to the different tones and mixes I was getting
is my old Tascam demo.
http://www.soundclick.com/bands/page...?bandID=651086

It was a bear trying to cram all of this into 8 track cassette.

I'm just now in the process of replacing gear and would appreciate your advice on a good 2 channel signal chain for someone on a budget.
Old 3rd March 2007
  #6
engineer / producer / mixer
 
Kevin Killen's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Jasper View Post
I think inaccurate monitoring might be part of the problem. I just never hear the bass as well over my monitors as I do later on.

As to taste, well that depends on the genre. But I will say Entwistle earned his rep.

Thanks Kevin,

Jasper
Jasper,

One way to check balances is to invest in a great sounding headphone amplifier such as the Grace 902 and a pair of high fidelity headphones. I did that myself over the last few years and I have found it enormously beneficial. Its a little expensive but over the long haul, it is worth the investment.

Good luck,

Kevin
Old 3rd March 2007
  #7
Gear nut
 
skopje's Avatar
 

headphones

What head phones do you use?

stephen
Old 4th March 2007
  #8
engineer / producer / mixer
 
Kevin Killen's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by skopje View Post
What head phones do you use?

stephen
I use the Sennheiser HD 580's

KK
Old 4th March 2007
  #9
engineer / producer / mixer
 
Kevin Killen's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by FFTT View Post
Hi Kevin,

It's an honor to have you here and your time is greatly appreciated.

I'd be interested in your advice on a few tricks in balancing the bass and the kick drum so they work together to drive the song without pushing smaller speakers too hard.

I'm a huge Peter Gabriel fan and have always admired Tony's ability to get that perfect bass part and tone.

I'm not sure if you've had the opportunity to work with Tony or not, but I consider him to be one of the masters.

The trouble is attempting to re-create that quality on a poor man's home studio budget.

My '64 Jazz Bass is definitely a recording sweetheart, but I always wonder if there's
a better way to bring out the best.

The only reference I have to the different tones and mixes I was getting
is my old Tascam demo.
http://www.soundclick.com/bands/page...?bandID=651086

It was a bear trying to cram all of this into 8 track cassette.

I'm just now in the process of replacing gear and would appreciate your advice on a good 2 channel signal chain for someone on a budget.

One trick would be to remove everything below 40 HZ, so that the little speakers are trying to reproduce all that low energy. If the bass and kick parts are really locked together , then you can also put both signals through a stereo compressor , making either of them the key to the compression , perhaps even using it as limiter instead so that you derive a consistent output.

Yes I have worked with Tony on Peter Gabriel recordings, plus I have used him as a session player on some projects that I have produced and i mixed a solo record of his " Pieces of the Sun" i believe.


I am not following the reference to the Tascam. Are you trying to emulate the bass tone from your 64 bass that is on those demo's?

Can you define your budget for the gear you seek... everybodies opinion of operationg within a budget is so unique !

KK
Old 6th March 2007
  #10
Gear Guru
 
FFTT's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Killen View Post
Jasper,

One way to check balances is to invest in a great sounding headphone amplifier such as the Grace 902 and a pair of high fidelity headphones. I did that myself over the last few years and I have found it enormously beneficial. Its a little expensive but over the long haul, it is worth the investment.

Good luck,

Kevin
Kevin,

I hope you are only using headphones on a very limited basis and at the lowest volume setting possible.

For all you know about sound engineering, I sadly know first hand how dangerous it can be to use headphones for extended periods of time when you become immersed in a project.
Before you know it, you've spent hours tracking, overdubbing and mixing.

In one years time, I went from having perfect pitch to clinically deaf in one ear with substantial irreversable damage to the other side.

I've been to the finest hearing specialist in the country and there's nothing they can do to repair the damage at any price.

As a full time professional, your exposure to sound is far greater than what most of us deal with on a regular basis and that puts you at even greater risk.

Using a headphone amplifier may improve the sound quality, but it also makes
it far too easy to turn up the volume when you should be taking a break.

With all your talent, I just don't want to see you or anyone else to end up in my situation.

Take care,

Robb
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