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Drum Bus automation: Who does it?
Old 11th February 2009
Gear Addict

Thread Starter
Drum Bus automation: Who does it?

After good dynamic playing and good compression is applied, I'm finding that i still want to automate volume a bit on the drum bus. Just up and down 1-2 db as the song evolves. More than that feels unnatural and problematic. But the mixes seem to want this little final tweakage.

I also find that I automate the mix of parallel compression sometimes too (more for big sounding sections), letting that breath a bit as well.

I'm a self-taught amateur (well semi-pro insofar as I release the end product).

Does this practice make sense to you? do you do it? or am I insane and an embarrassment to all things GS?


PS: Whoever the slut was who suggested a Pultec after a 33906 on the drum bus is my hero!
Old 11th February 2009
Lives for gear
Sure whatever fits the song, this is a really common thing to do. I automate almost everything in my mixes at one point or another.
Old 11th February 2009
Lives for gear
cavern's Avatar

i do it too but i don't automate the whole bus. just the bass drum or snare or some cymbal and tom hits in certain spots individually.
Old 11th February 2009
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Thread Starter
I always thought that I could automate everything else but leave drum level untouched. But no, I guess it's fair game like anything else.
Old 11th February 2009
Lives for gear
suedesound's Avatar

Yeah, there are no rules. I did a project recently where on some songs we had the drummer record his parts on two different kits with completely different micing set ups. In the mix we cut between the different kits for different parts of the song. That required a fair amount of drum automation to make it sit right without being weird (bus and individual).

It didn't hurt that the drummer was really tight and had his parts memorized note for note. He didn't listen to the originally played part and was still dead on on a lot of it if you listened to both kits at the same time.

Anyway, automate whatever needs it, that's what makes a fun mix!
Old 12th February 2009
I don't do the whole drum buss thing, but I absolutely automate drums in the mix
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