The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
What you wish you'd known on day one of your mixing career
Old 23rd June 2005
  #31
Gear Maniac
 
cultureofgreed's Avatar
 

Gain Structure!
Old 23rd June 2005
  #32
Gear Guru
 
u b k's Avatar
 

try always to listen to the song rather than the mix.

your ego wants everything to be heard equally; the song wants everything to support the song.

your ego wants to make everything fit; the song wants only what works.

your ego is afraid the mix is not perfect, and always wants to do more; the song knows its perfection, and only wants to be enjoyable.

also, really good weed can help. a LOT.


gregoire
del ubik
Old 23rd June 2005
  #33
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by u b i k
try always to listen to the song rather than the mix.

your ego wants everything to be heard equally; the song wants everything to support the song.

your ego wants to make everything fit; the song wants only what works.

your ego is afraid the mix is not perfect, and always wants to do more; the song knows its perfection, and only wants to be enjoyable.

also, really good weed can help. a LOT.


gregoire
del ubik
very nice post. best one of the thread...
Old 23rd June 2005
  #34
Lives for gear
 
David R.'s Avatar
 

Record for the mix.

Patsy Cline would sound just as good singing through a 58 into a Mackie, because she had a great voice. It's really our job not to screw things up.

Buss compression.
Old 23rd June 2005
  #35
Lives for gear
 
pigpen's Avatar
 

Oh, I forgot one....don't listen to the bass player! They forget quite often that they are part of the rhythm section...unless they are Primus...seriously.

If the band is a bit boring, standing up and drinking a few Red Bulls can help.

If you have the luxury of an intern, have them playback takes or mixes if the band is producing and save your ears for the real deal.
Old 23rd June 2005
  #36
Gear Maniac
 

you can't make a song good. you can only make a good song.

in other words, it is what it is. no amount of mix magic can make turn a bad song, into a good one .. its just masturbation.. with no climax.

i've found that when i do get a good song to mix.. my main goal is to stay out of its way and not fukk it up. when i start worrying about "sound" is when the magic and life can really be sucked out. its only about the energy and emotion of the song.

my deep thoughts for the day

peace,
ants
Old 23rd June 2005
  #37
Lives for gear
Don't be afraid to EQ or do whatever it takes.

if the mix sounds crap, try finding the one instrument that when you shut it off, everything starts to sound like a record. There usually is one offender.
Then show that to the band and LEAVE it off.

and there are no ideals... no right or wrong... only the way THIS mix sounds to YOU right NOW.

as Roy Thomas Baker says; "it's just one way to mix it"

less high hat

ps I DON'T agree that a bass guitar is "part of the rhythm section". I think great melodic bass is ALWAYS better. I don't like any part of a record to be boring... even the smallest bit, if it can be avoided.
Old 23rd June 2005
  #38
Lives for gear
 
Doublehelix's Avatar
 

KISS (keep it simple stupid)

My best-sounding mixes are the ones that I whip out quickly. The ones that I agonize over *every* minute detail tend to get over-produced.

Your first instincts are often your best, and quite often, after hearing the playback for the 5 millionth time, it all starts to become a blur...
Old 23rd June 2005
  #39
Lives for gear
 
Brent's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by u b i k
try always to listen to the song rather than the mix.

your ego wants everything to be heard equally; the song wants everything to support the song.

your ego wants to make everything fit; the song wants only what works.

your ego is afraid the mix is not perfect, and always wants to do more; the song knows its perfection, and only wants to be enjoyable.

also, really good weed can help. a LOT.


gregoire
del ubik

This is definately one of my weak points in my current quest to learn this trade...
Old 23rd June 2005
  #40
Lives for gear
 
soultrane's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by u b i k
try always to listen to the song rather than the mix.

your ego wants everything to be heard equally; the song wants everything to support the song.

your ego wants to make everything fit; the song wants only what works.

your ego is afraid the mix is not perfect, and always wants to do more; the song knows its perfection, and only wants to be enjoyable.

also, really good weed can help. a LOT.


gregoire
del ubik
ubik

continuing to speak my language!!!

(nicerizer envy....)
Old 23rd June 2005
  #41
Gear Guru
Quote:
Originally Posted by C.Lambrechts
- turn things down to make space for 'it' instead of turning 'it' up.
Amen! It happens often that I'll be working on guitars and someone will come in and comment on how much better the piano sounds.
Old 23rd June 2005
  #42
no ssl yet
Guest
make it sound good

make it sound good not loud.

ITs about the team not the player (not exactly) But this is a hold over from my marching band says in Junior and HS . I played trumpet and guys always competed for who could play in upper octaves, but when we all played the notes on the staff together it sounded better.

In mixing the parallel is dont make a sound better, make the mix sound better

Turn down the volume on mastered Ref CDs.


And lastly dont compress the drum sounds. Blend with a compressed mult
Old 23rd June 2005
  #43
Lives for gear
 
ONDRAY's Avatar
Keep practicing one day it will hit you "That your mixing like a pro and it just flows."

Keep doing things your way as long as it works well and polish your routine.

and the biggest thing I always go by is LESS IS MORE.

Instead of adding allot of processing to a sound,. focus on tweaking the sound so it fits the track as a whole, usually all it takes is removing overlapping Freq's.
Old 23rd June 2005
  #44
Lives for gear
 
PhilE's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by u b i k
try always to listen to the song rather than the mix.

your ego wants everything to be heard equally; the song wants everything to support the song.

your ego wants to make everything fit; the song wants only what works.

your ego is afraid the mix is not perfect, and always wants to do more; the song knows its perfection, and only wants to be enjoyable.

also, really good weed can help. a LOT.


gregoire
del ubik

YES! thats waht I was trying to say! heh

OH YEAH- and don't have presets!
Old 23rd June 2005
  #45
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ONDRAY
and the biggest thing I always go by is LESS IS MORE..
less is never more. more is more, doesnt mean its better.
Old 24th June 2005
  #46
Gear Addict
 
Waylon's Avatar
 

1. Industry politics Suck.

2. Pay attention to as many details on the contractual side as you do on the engineering side.

3. Get it in writing.

4. Getting it in writing doesnt make you an ass... but it can keep you from having to act like an assh*le.

5. Remember what this first day feels like, and the day that feeling isnt there, take a break form the race and do a project ( or anything) that makes you feel like that again.

man, you will all have to trust me that I am nowhere near as bitter as it may seem!....
Old 24th June 2005
  #47
Gear Head
 
fatcat's Avatar
 

Firstly, trust your ears always.
Secondly, I wish I had used a spectrum analyser from day one. I didn't truly understand eq relationships until I was able to compare solo'd tracks with an analyser. Then put the whole mix through the analyser and see where certain instruments had build up problems, or harshness. Also, our hearing changes from day to day, but the analyser is constant.

Try this: solo the bass and 1 guitar track. Pan the bass left, pan the guitar right. The analyzer will show the bass on top and the gtr on bottom. Scan the low mids on both and see if they both build up at a specific/same freq. Now do a surgical cut at that freq. on one or the other then listen in mono. They fit together like a glove now, and you didn't guess what the freq. was, you knew exactly what it was and solved the problem.

It's a great tool when used this way, but not necessary for broader eq cuts or boosts.

Another thing I like to do is see exactly what the strongest low freq of the snare is and then do a gentle boost an octave below that...i.e. snare hit is loudest at 228hz so I boost at 114. Supporting the fundemental in a precise(albeit overly-nerdy) way.

Helps in lots of other ways too...

Jay
Old 24th June 2005
  #48
Gear Nut
 

not that i'm a pro...

but eq versus volume. turn something up or down before eq'ing (or eqing further), and I mean at the end stages, 1-1.5 db tweak time. this is kind of basic but I always find myself coming back to this maxim.

Hold off putting eq on the 2 buss till about halfway through the mix instead of at the onset of the mix. get rough eq, panning, level, etc. then 2 buss eq. this seems to keep me focused on the mid range and getting everything clear, then, ear candy on the 2 bus. and it seems to save the ears.

cant believe no one has mentioned cranking the mix and walking down the hall, to the bathroom, then to the fridge, then walk into the office. this is a great help for general level and a great help for poor control rooms.

more specifically, this is a trick that i have been playing with. mult bass, put pultec on it and crank 30 hz. Run this into a distortion, dont be afraid to really distort it, i mean it will sound unuseable. watch your meters, you are basically looking to use the distortion as a limiter and compressor. notice how the meter barely moves in a way that is difficult to achieve with just compression. then low pass filter the thing down to like 150 hz and lower depending on what the track needs. distorted sound dissappears and viola, an almost synthy sub bass appears!

dealys instead of reverb, a little easier to place, saves on dsp too.

great thread thumbsup

carl
Old 24th June 2005
  #49
Gear Nut
 

woops, someone did say listen from afar.

listen to us!
Old 24th June 2005
  #50
Lives for gear
 
Wiggy Neve Slut's Avatar
 

Knowing when to stop mixing so the mix dont get overkooked like a roast dinner.

Werd
Wiggy

PS,.... i have been a victim of this syndrom on many occasions
Old 25th June 2005
  #51
Gear Addict
 
aidyhall's Avatar
Don't mix loud - everything sounds great when its loud, the trick is to make it exciting when it's quiet!

Rides! From years of assisting and then applying what I saw, the really great mixers often have a lot of faders moving a lot of the time, creating space, pushing different parts at musically appropriate moments, emphasizing downbeats, etc... especially in more dense mixes.

What may be technically 'too loud' may be exciting. I'd rather have something jump out and grab your attention (like the first line of a lead vocal) than for the event to pass by in the name of a 'balanced' but boring mix.

When thing get tense, remember that making records is supposed to be fun! I've forgotten that in the past, and then nobody's enjoying being in the studio!
Old 25th June 2005
  #52
Lives for gear
 
Midlandmorgan's Avatar
 

- Limit the number of people (other than the engineer) who will have input on the final mix...the fewer the better...identify WHO that person is early in the project..

- Do a mix...then put it away for a day, and come back to it the next morning (time permitting of course)...gives the brain a chance to reboot and you can make any adjustments without all the mental baggage...

- Get out of the chair, walk around the room...play it back in the tracking area through headphones, through the TR speakers, outside, in the car, in the house, cheap-ass stereos, boom boxes, mp3 players, or any medium that the project is likely to be heard...if it sounds good in all of the above, then LEAVE IT ALONE!

- Echoing what was said earlier: don't take criticism/suggestions personally...speaking from experience, they can eat you alive.

- Echoing another previous post: some songs will suck regardless of the skill of the engineer, musician, quality of the recorded tracks, etc...don't take these personally either...

If I may add one more: find and use a diversion to clear your head...not just breaks, but something that requires focusing on a totally different task...do what it takes to maintain touch with reality.
Old 25th June 2005
  #53
Gear Addict
 
johnjm22's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by fatcat
Firstly, trust your ears always.
Secondly, I wish I had used a spectrum analyser from day one. I didn't truly understand eq relationships until I was able to compare solo'd tracks with an analyser. Then put the whole mix through the analyser and see where certain instruments had build up problems, or harshness. Also, our hearing changes from day to day, but the analyser is constant.

Try this: solo the bass and 1 guitar track. Pan the bass left, pan the guitar right. The analyzer will show the bass on top and the gtr on bottom. Scan the low mids on both and see if they both build up at a specific/same freq. Now do a surgical cut at that freq. on one or the other then listen in mono. They fit together like a glove now, and you didn't guess what the freq. was, you knew exactly what it was and solved the problem.

It's a great tool when used this way, but not necessary for broader eq cuts or boosts.

Another thing I like to do is see exactly what the strongest low freq of the snare is and then do a gentle boost an octave below that...i.e. snare hit is loudest at 228hz so I boost at 114. Supporting the fundemental in a precise(albeit overly-nerdy) way.

Helps in lots of other ways too...

Jay
Interesting.....


I'm curious, what analyzer are you using?
Old 25th June 2005
  #54
Gear Head
 
fatcat's Avatar
 

Wavelab 4, FFT. I run out the spdif of my board into a laptop with WL4 on it so I can glance over at the FFT any time. I say use your ears and your eyes. Hell, if I could figure out a way to smell the freq. response I'd do that too.
Old 25th June 2005
  #55
Mindreader
 
BevvyB's Avatar
 

Anything like wavelab for mac?
Old 25th June 2005
  #56
Gear Head
 
fatcat's Avatar
 

The PAZ might be on mac.
Old 25th June 2005
  #57
Mindreader
 
BevvyB's Avatar
 

Yeah I use PAZ
Just wondered if there was a super-duper program for staring at your audio
Old 25th June 2005
  #58
Lives for gear
 
AlphaDingo's Avatar
 

A little OT...does anyone know of a resource to help me to learn how to use meters properly? By properly I mean at all. Books, websites, whatever. Thanks.
Old 25th June 2005
  #59
Gear Maniac
 
Vari-Mu's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by fatcat

It's a great tool when used this way, but not necessary for broader eq cuts or boosts.



Jay
They're useful but I find that they are pretty much all imprecise under 100 Hz.

I wish I had known from the start the extent to which you are at the mercy of your room when judging the low end.

Aprt from that, like a lot of others here, parallel processing made the biggest single difference for me.

Best

Vari-Mu
Old 25th June 2005
  #60
Gear Maniac
 
Vari-Mu's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by BevvyB
Yeah I use PAZ
Just wondered if there was a super-duper program for staring at your audio
Try Spectrafoo.

Cheers

Vari-Mu
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump