It took a little while to completly adjust, there was some tweaking in terms of speaker placement and damping the room. I used some CD's for refernce and Bob Ludwig has been very kind over the years to listen to a mix in progress for me especially when I am in a new situation. That feedback has proven invaluable and I am very grateful to him.
In terms of other rooms, I do bring my own monitors,amp and cable. This at least gives me a comfortable refernce point. If they do not sound right then it catches my attention. There may be a more fundemental problem that I was not aware of.
Nowadays I travel less for mixing so i have a stable of rooms that I know well and therefore it is less of an issue for me. I do try to leave as little to mastering in terms of overall balance. I want to be comfortable with the notion that the unmastered version could be released and everyone would be satisfied. However I will say that I am constantly amazed by the musical impact mastering can have on the end result, a little tweak can yield dramatic results...... either you balance was good or awful.
When you used to travel around more, did you spend a lot of time listening to cd's before starting the session? Would you reference the disks during the mix at certain points? What do you do when you get into a room with less than stellar acoustics?
I've had some issues in the past, looking for ways to get around this, besides building my own room. Having your own monitors helps a ton I'd imagine.
I just started booking the rooms that in thought were reliable, hence why so many of my records were done at Ocean Way in LA. Yes I did do some listening but coupled with my knowledge of the room it made it easier .
With less stellar rooms, I would listen to CD refernces, make a quick recording or mix and send to Bob Ludwig for an evaluation. if he confirmed my suspicion, then I was out of there. If it was close, i'd work with it and over time was able to adjust. Having my own setup ( since 1993) has really made the biggest difference for me.
Room tuning is a black science. Most rooms have a sound deficiency , the question is whether it has an impact on your work or not. If the mix position is mostly reliable, then thats a great start.
Over the years I have found that the big monitors in the rooms were colored in a way as to make them useless, except for blasting the labels ears off for fun. That is why i started bring my own setup, at least it was consistent. There were a few rooms ( Ocean Way and 6th floor of Skyline ) that had great monitoring, the others were ........