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While I usually can get nice full sounds onto disk, I find that my projects are too upfront. When tracking should I be letting some air into the mics, say instead of leaving a mic at the speaker grill maybe back it into the room 10'? Pull the acustic guitar mic back 5'?
Compress signals liberally but try to maintain the high end?
Often just dropping some verb onto something is not really an answer.
Does anyone have basic tips for adding space to instruments and the feel of a mix...delays...eq cuts..verbs etc.
Thanks in advance.

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OK, Mike, so what do you mean by too "upfront"? Too dry? Or is it that you can hear all of the instruments and elements, but there is no blend? Give an example please. Gee, wouldn't it be nice if you could just upload a soundfile to this group?
ec

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Ed,

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Ed,
Not so much dry as well...big. Doing mostly rock type stuff. i.e Aimee mann, Beatles, Wilco influenced. Lots of guitars etc. It just seems as if everything fills up so fast as far as the mix goes. Songs I try and emulate seem to have great tones but they also seem further back in the mix and smaller than mine. Any tricks or standard mixing practices I may be missing?
Using Cubase VST, MOTU 2408 mixing to real board instead of internally in VST.

Lets take a hypothetical. I lay down a rcok drum track with a DM Pro or a nice pro loop. Then I add a tube amp mic'd close. Pan that off to the side. Next, throw in some bass run thru a pre into the board. What would be a few tricks as far as rhythym and lead guitars to remove the "upfront close miked sound" and set them back in the mix? Throwing verb sometimes makes things wash out and cluttered.

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It seems like a common question is how to get a "big" sound that really stands out in front of the mix.
But, I'm finding the opposite situation a bit more difficult to conjure. I've got "big" sounds all over the place.

I'm trying to get a nice, narrow but clean sounding acoustic guitar that fits well in a stereo panorama but doesn't occupy the whole space. (Hopefully, that makes sense it is hard to describe sounds in writing sometimes).

Like if you had a nice vocal upfront, and it covered most of the space between the speakers, and you wanted an acoustic guitar to sit in a nice narrow notch off to the left side of center, so that it had it's own space to occupy but didn't cover a wide part of the whole. (sounds like I'm babbling)
Here is a post from the MAssenburg area, he seems to be saying what I am more or less.

"I've tried a few things and I think it will boil down to mic placement to get that right kind of stereo image, but I don't know quite how to get there. Certainly a mono-mike and pan-pot ain't gonna do it, but I'm not sure how to stereo mike to get the effect I'm after. "

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OK, I think that I know what you are talking about. Welcome to Hell (just kidding). How loud are you monitoring? Many times, you should try to get your balances with the monitor level turned way down. It takes a little discipline at first, if you are not used to it. Forget about reverb and other effects for now.....concentrate on how you are using EQ. Oh yeah, forget about soloing anything, for now. When using solo, many times the sound of an instrument soloed has nothing to do with how it needs to sound in context with the track. With monitor level down, and all of the elements playing....or maybe just the rhythm section turned on, try using EQ to trim out some space. Try using dipping (subtractive EQ) instead of boosting. Try removing some 200-300 on the kick drum, and, or the bass. Dip out frequencies to make some room for stuff. Dip something out and move the fader up. Just as an exercise, play with shaping your mix, with all elements in, by thining out the low mids....a good place to start. Let me know what happens. Also, don't forget that there is nothing wrong with making music that doesn't sound like everybody elses. You may stumble across the next newest "thing".

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Exactly, I think we are on the right path. Yes, while I was not mixing loud, I had never tried the mix the way you mention. I had just heard that from Craig Anderton as well.
Low volume, subtractive eq, build from that. Excellent advice. Thanks.

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THANK YOU ED!


"Low volume, subtractive eq"

The Engineer that I apperanticed with said these things to me over and over, and I have found that, no matter what the gear, what the music, the venue ( LIve, or recording, tracking or mixing) if you concentrate on balance, and not screwing up the phase by adding a pile of EQ, things will be alright. The last record I did with that guy, we cut with a live band in one room, (with floor monitors, and an SM 57 on lead vocals)
Through a soundtracks board to a 24 Track !" fostex and I kidd you not, it sounds phenominal! When we had the occasion to re-mix it at a later date, it went thru a much higher end console, and better monitors, and when the faders went up, there was the mix.. just as he left it.


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SRS


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Hey! Mike Cazz, that was my question to George Massenburg! I don't mind being quoted, but I kind of like being atributed. Usually. Unless I say something really stupid. No harm done.

In my case, I was trying to fit an extremely non-busy mix together. Just this nice female vocal and an acoustic guitar backing it. We might add some percussion in just to spice it up, but that comes later.

George, obviously being smarter than me (geez, his work sounds so good!), advised about the same thing. Dip the EQ a bit so as not to crowd the vocal. Good advice, and effective.

It wasn't exactly what I was trying to do though, and maybe what I'm wanting isn't doable. I want to get the stereo image of the guitar into a nice, well-defined space, as if the singer was singing right up to your face, all up close and personal, while the guitar is playing several feet back and away from center, like the guitarist was sitting behind the singer in the room.

Yeah, I know, it sounds like I'm babbling.

It seems to me more a miking question, in order to recreate the guitars positional illusion in space in the stereo speakers.

Conjuring the illusion though is turning out to be elusive, at least the way I want to hear it.

I don't know why I worry over such things, nobobdy cares about quality, the record probably won't sell, if it ever does sell, the radio station will compress it to within a db of it's life, then it will get MP3'd to hell and back.

But hey, I don't do this stuff because I'm sane.

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Nuke, no offense intended. Actually I did mention I had pulled that from another post...but somehow that part of what I said was cut off when I pasted the text.

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Boy, that is EXACTLY the opposite of what I try to do. I LIKE to hear every note of every instrument all the way through the song.

NOT have a "Wall of Sound" type recording.

I think you're doing something right!!

I think I'd like your recordings!!



BUT, I do think cutting EQ is DEFINITELY better than boosting, in most cases. I try to make valleys for some instruments so the peaks of others fit right in.

Did you read, on, I think, Rogers board, under Compressors, I believe, about the engineer who remixed an old Aerosmith album that was recorded so well, that all he had to do was put the 16 faders up to "0Vu", and THAT was the mix of the album?!!

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Bob.

[This message has been edited by THE MIX FIX (edited 04-03-2000).]


Bob Buontempo.

AKA: - THE MIX FIX

Also Hanging at: http://recpit.prosoundweb.com

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