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Old 15th January 2018
Lives for gear
foldback's Avatar
I regularly recommend to my recording students to listen to their mix on a high-end laptop and to listen on an iPhone or some other expensive smartphone to see how the sound holds up on less-than-ideal speaker systems.

A mix should still work on bass-light speakers like these kinds of sources, the song should still have everything there and not sound gritty or awful, it should just be bass light and a little tinny but not turn in to total rubbish.

One of my clients brought over a mix on his iPhone last week, I said "have you listened to it", he said yes and it has no bass, I want you to hear the bass. I insisted we listen to the song on his iPhone 7+ through its speaker.

While we listened together on his iPhone I pointed out that the lead vocal across the intro was gritty and way to loud, I did not need to hear any bass to tell that his balance was way off and however he recorded that intro vocal needed a do-over.

He agreed and we never did listen on the big speakers, the phone speaker highlighted what we needed to hear. It reminds me of why people used Auratone monitors back in the 70's, they highlighted things that were wrong with a mix.

For me my expensive Apple laptop and iPhone are my 2000-era reference speakers, a good mix needs to sound like the song on any speaker. Music-supervisors and a lot more consumers are listening on their phones so mixes need to sound as good as they can on these platforms too.

Good music to all!