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Mixing OTB with Desk and Outboard
Old 5 days ago
  #1
Gear Maniac
 

Mixing OTB with Desk and Outboard

I have an 24 Channel D&R Orion. And i have a few Outboard FX Units. So my quesions are:

1. How do you use your analog Desk? Do EQ while tracking with the console? With an Compressor on the insert? Do you only track thru the Preamps and EQ on the next pass thru the console when you mix?

2. Which Typ of FX Units do you use on the AUX? 1 or 2 Reverbs? Delay? Chorus? Phaser?

3. Do you use only 1 Reverb on the Sends? Or do you use different reverbs on the different Instrument Tracks? I read many different opinions on this and i would like to hear your thoughts.

4. Do you use some kind of standard configuration? Like allways same Instruments on the same tracks and same FX Units on the Same sends etc.?
Old 5 days ago
  #2
Gear Head
 

I feel like there’s different schools of thought on this; to process going in, or leave it for mixing. I tend to like to process a little on the way in, choosing to commit to at least a little compression or eq processing- if changing the instrument, moving the mic around/changing mics or preamps, etc doesn’t get me there, but the processing does. I’m not advocating for “fixing it” on the way in, but using compression or eq as tools on the way in.

I like to save FX for mix, unless I know I’ll want to use the same FX unit in mix on other things. I’ll print the FX on its own channels of tape or in the DAW for that.

When thinking about reverbs being used on the aux’s I tend to think of instruments that would likely be grouped together in the same room, for instance. Maybe drums, guitars and a little bit of bass get sent to a reverb set for a room sound and vocals go to a plate. Since the instruments are going to the same room type reverb they might have a bit more cohesion. Maybe not though. Vocal may have its own space using a plate instead of a room sounds. Then again, maybe not. Just experiment.

Committing to a sound on the way in can be great if you like the sound, or a disappointment if you overdo compression or eq and only really catch it later. But I really don’t think it’s a bad thing to chase a sound and commit to it on the way in.

It’s good to commit to a “template” of sorts when using a console, if using tape or the DAW puts into your board, where the drum channels always come up in the same places, bass, guitars and keys, etc on the same channels, so you’re not continually swapping settings between channels, but making small adjustments where you want to.
Old 5 days ago
  #3
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterLarkin View Post
I feel like there’s different schools of thought on this; to process going in, or leave it for mixing. I tend to like to process a little on the way in, choosing to commit to at least a little compression or eq processing- if changing the instrument, moving the mic around/changing mics or preamps, etc doesn’t get me there, but the processing does. I’m not advocating for “fixing it” on the way in, but using compression or eq as tools on the way in.

I like to save FX for mix, unless I know I’ll want to use the same FX unit in mix on other things. I’ll print the FX on its own channels of tape or in the DAW for that.

When thinking about reverbs being used on the aux’s I tend to think of instruments that would likely be grouped together in the same room, for instance. Maybe drums, guitars and a little bit of bass get sent to a reverb set for a room sound and vocals go to a plate. Since the instruments are going to the same room type reverb they might have a bit more cohesion. Maybe not though. Vocal may have its own space using a plate instead of a room sounds. Then again, maybe not. Just experiment.

Committing to a sound on the way in can be great if you like the sound, or a disappointment if you overdo compression or eq and only really catch it later. But I really don’t think it’s a bad thing to chase a sound and commit to it on the way in.

It’s good to commit to a “template” of sorts when using a console, if using tape or the DAW puts into your board, where the drum channels always come up in the same places, bass, guitars and keys, etc on the same channels, so you’re not continually swapping settings between channels, but making small adjustments where you want to.
Thanks for the answers. Can you tell me how many reverbs did you used on the last mix and how? Inserts or aux sends?

Which Genre do you mix?
Old 5 days ago
  #4
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by BHW View Post
Thanks for the answers. Can you tell me how many reverbs did you used on the last mix and how? Inserts or aux sends?

Which Genre do you mix?
I work on indie rock mostly, some folky stuff sometimes, but it’s mostly a range of indie rock from dream pop to rock n roll.

When I used a console for my work, the last console I had - had two aux sends. I’d send the first to a room reverb patch on an outboard reverb unit, like SPX90 or something and send some of the drums to it, snare, toms, a little of the actual room mics. Bring it back on two channels of the console where I could eq the return and put a compressor on its inserts if I wanted. I’d also send some of the bass and guitars to that after I got their levels in a decent place with the drums going. I would typically chase a sound emulating the band playing together in a room, even if they did during tracking. If coming from tape I would have compressed going to tape, or let the tape do it, and rarely inserted compressors on drums unless for effect. If coming from the DAW I’d usually compress kick, leave snare alone, compress rooms a little - via inserts on the console.

For the lead vocal, and backups, I’d send to another reverb unit via the six send, either some sort of Lexicon or another SPX90 with a plate reverb patch on that. Depending on the tempo of the song, or the style I’d change the decay time. Faster songs got a shorter decay. I’d bring that stereo return from the vocal reverb onto two channels of the console and eq that, usually making sure the low end was in check and maybe getting rid of some nasal mids if there were any.

Bringing your FX back onto two channels of the console can be really helpful if you want to further mold the sound of the FX, but it’s definitely not necessary.
Old 5 days ago
  #5
Gear Nut
 

I also have a D&R Orion, 32 channel with 4 stereo modules. Track and mix lots of guitar based music (rock, metal, punk, blues, jazz).

1. Track through console on the way into Pro Tools with some eq and compression. Comps on inserts. Occasionally use outboard pres but usually bring those through the consoles line inputs for convenience.

Mixing is on the console as well with more eq and compression added as needed.

2. The Orion has 6 useable aux sends with 7/8 in the monitor path only. Typically run things like this come mix time:
Aux1 PCM60 (room)
Aux2 PCM70 (hall or larger room)
Aux3 Plate
Aux4 SPX 90 (pitch shift+delay)
Aux5 TC D2 (1/8 or 1/4 note delay)
Aux6 Effectron II (gritty slap delay)

All EFX get returned on the stereo channels.

3. Sends get used for efx that are shared by 2 or more instruments. Things needing unique or individual treatment get taken care of ITB and sent to console with efx pre blended.

4. I’m a creature of habit and like things showing up on the same channels regardless of project. Kick is on channel 1,Lead vocal is always 25, etc. This helps me stay organized and in the creative zone. A good template ITB helps with this.

There’s a million ways to do these things. Experiment a bit and you’ll find a work flow/arrangement that suits you.
Old 5 days ago
  #6
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by goodwolf View Post
I also have a D&R Orion, 32 channel with 4 stereo modules. Track and mix lots of guitar based music (rock, metal, punk, blues, jazz).

1. Track through console on the way into Pro Tools with some eq and compression. Comps on inserts. Occasionally use outboard pres but usually bring those through the consoles line inputs for convenience.

Mixing is on the console as well with more eq and compression added as needed.

2. The Orion has 6 useable aux sends with 7/8 in the monitor path only. Typically run things like this come mix time:
Aux1 PCM60 (room)
Aux2 PCM70 (hall or larger room)
Aux3 Plate
Aux4 SPX 90 (pitch shift+delay)
Aux5 TC D2 (1/8 or 1/4 note delay)
Aux6 Effectron II (gritty slap delay)

All EFX get returned on the stereo channels.

3. Sends get used for efx that are shared by 2 or more instruments. Things needing unique or individual treatment get taken care of ITB and sent to console with efx pre blended.

4. I’m a creature of habit and like things showing up on the same channels regardless of project. Kick is on channel 1,Lead vocal is always 25, etc. This helps me stay organized and in the creative zone. A good template ITB helps with this.

There’s a million ways to do these things. Experiment a bit and you’ll find a work flow/arrangement that suits you.
Thanks for your answer.

So you use your auxs for mono FX Sends? What are the benefits of doing so? Or are there any drawbacks which you noticed.

i planned to use the sends in stereo pairs. 1+2, 3+4, 5+6 etc. Advantage of using Monosends is that you could use much more FX Units. But are you sacrificing the stereo image for this?



at the moment im cabling all my stuff... so i cant start experimenting.
Old 5 days ago
  #7
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterLarkin View Post
I work on indie rock mostly, some folky stuff sometimes, but it’s mostly a range of indie rock from dream pop to rock n roll.

When I used a console for my work, the last console I had - had two aux sends. I’d send the first to a room reverb patch on an outboard reverb unit, like SPX90 or something and send some of the drums to it, snare, toms, a little of the actual room mics. Bring it back on two channels of the console where I could eq the return and put a compressor on its inserts if I wanted. I’d also send some of the bass and guitars to that after I got their levels in a decent place with the drums going. I would typically chase a sound emulating the band playing together in a room, even if they did during tracking. If coming from tape I would have compressed going to tape, or let the tape do it, and rarely inserted compressors on drums unless for effect. If coming from the DAW I’d usually compress kick, leave snare alone, compress rooms a little - via inserts on the console.

For the lead vocal, and backups, I’d send to another reverb unit via the six send, either some sort of Lexicon or another SPX90 with a plate reverb patch on that. Depending on the tempo of the song, or the style I’d change the decay time. Faster songs got a shorter decay. I’d bring that stereo return from the vocal reverb onto two channels of the console and eq that, usually making sure the low end was in check and maybe getting rid of some nasal mids if there were any.

Bringing your FX back onto two channels of the console can be really helpful if you want to further mold the sound of the FX, but it’s definitely not necessary.
i also use normal channels for the fx returns, as this makes it possible to eq the lowend.
Old 5 days ago
  #8
Gear Nut
 

With the exception of the TC D2 all the effects are a mono in/stereo out. Running that delay as a mono in is just my preference. The stereo channels of the console have simple shelving filters that can help shape things in a general way, if the returns need more eq and the regular channels are free then sometimes they end up there. Sometimes the efx get returned into pro tools for more creative treatments and then sent into console. I’m a simple is best type until I need to get weird for some reason then whatever hits the artistic goal is what gets done. If a mix needs tons of efx and automation to make it work then I’m probably fully in the box with some hardware inserts.
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