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Mixing ...is it personal ?


Dan O

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Off on tuesday with time to kill before the kids come home .

Is mixing just a personal preference ? are there any rules ? dano/ketronguy

 

ps..i am going to retire for a few weeks . I am posting to much . sorry ladies and gents . all most a full house

www.esnips.com/web/SongsfromDanO
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I hope you get an answer to this because I also need information. One thing that throws me, everything I read and hear indicates that you should record tracks with very few effects, then add them at the end. Supposidly this keeps everythng from turning into mush. The same magazines that recommend this will turn around and review a keyboard, putting a lot of weight on how many effects you can get on each track at the same time. Why is it that a keyboard or module is many times considered "pro" if you can get 15 simultaneous effects while a keyboard is "not all it could be" if everything but effects is top notch. It almost seems that it should be the opposite. I guess reading the review on the E-mu P2500 last night in SOS got me to thinking about this.

 

Robert

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My relationship with the mixing process is that I only do rough mixes. Sometimes I oversee final mixes; and other times, I merely hand off my work to someone else who's in charge.

 

My impression is that mixing is a process much like any other area of making music in that there are a variety of "guidelines," which one can adhere to or break from, depending on what one wants to do. It helps to know what these guidelines are, but mixing is an art and therefore subject to taste as well.

 

There are many good references out there for those who want to dig deeper. Here are two that I know of:

 

1) Shaping Your Sound is a five program video set offering a hands-on approach. It is hosted by engineer, producer Tom Lubin. Each video covers one of the following subjects: a) Equalizers, Compressors and Gates, b) Microphones, c) Mixers and Mixing, d) Multitrack Recording, and e) Reverb and Delay.

 

2) The Mixing Engineer\'s Handbook by Bobby Owsinski offers a variety of guidelines, including mixing styles used in LA, New York, and London, EQ'ing techniques, and more. It also includes interviews with top engineers such as Allen Sides, Bruce Swedien, and our very own George Massenburg.

Enthusiasm powers the world.

 

Craig Anderton's Archiving Article

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I too find it perplexing. I would like to more about the steps in Mixing just to make my personal stuff better. Anything that's really important I would hand off to someone with experience. One thing that I've heard over & over again, If it sounds OK to your ear, it must be OK. In other words let your ear make the decision.

Steve

 

www.seagullphotodesign.com

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Yes, it is personal taste. Successful engineers are often have a certain sound to their mixes. Successful mixers use their own judgement as to what sounds good.

 

One thing that I found useful: to avoid become the mixing equivalent of velocitized, every once and a while bring down the level of the whole thing to a just audible level and see if anything really stands out. If so, most likely that part is too hot in the mix (typically the drums in my experience).

 

Switching monitors isn't a bad idea either. If you don't have to sets, print a cassette and take it out to your car and have a listen. Anything to reset your frame of reference.

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How many are using midi to sequence ?

Are you satisfied with the playback ?

Good enough to substitute for a real person ?

 

I can say this .....I am satisfied with the midi playback of my SD1 . I basically record directly to my on board hard drive . I mix ,alter,edit the sequenced tracks directly while it plays off the hard drive . I rename the title and my edit (or mix ?) is saved . I than play that mix onto a tascam 788 . Overdub the vocals and lead parts . Utilize the on board vocal kit to provide backing harmonys .

 

No computer . dano/ketronguy

www.esnips.com/web/SongsfromDanO
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In the Mar 02 Electronic Musician, the issue where dB's "Tape Dancer" is dissected, see my article called "Panning for Gold" for a few ideas.

 

Bottom line, yeah, it's personal, but there are some things you can do in terms of approach to make it better.

 

Best,

 

Baldini

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From Rabid-

One thing that throws me, everything I read and hear indicates that you should record tracks with very few effects, then add them at the end. Supposidly this keeps everythng from turning into mush. The same magazines that recommend this will turn around and review a keyboard, putting a lot of weight on how many effects you can get on each track at the same time. Why is it that a keyboard or module is many times considered "pro" if you can get 15 simultaneous effects while a keyboard is "not all it could be" if everything but effects is top notch. It almost seems that it should be the opposite. I guess reading the review on the E-mu P2500 last night in SOS got me to thinking about this.

When I'm looking at a board and I'm considering how many simultaneous effects I can get with it, usually I'm thinking about using it in a live situation. When I record I usually disable all the effects except those that give it "that" sound or those that would be hard/time consuming to recreate in software. My reasoning here is that it's easier to modify effect amounts or types in the mix without comitting to any one reverb/chorus/etc.

 

-Casey ;)

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Originally posted by Postman:

Yes, it is personal taste. Successful engineers are often have a certain sound to their mixes. Successful mixers use their own judgement as to what sounds good.

 

One thing that I found useful: to avoid become the mixing equivalent of velocitized, every once and a while bring down the level of the whole thing to a just audible level and see if anything really stands out. If so, most likely that part is too hot in the mix (typically the drums in my experience).

 

Switching monitors isn't a bad idea either. If you don't have to sets, print a cassette and take it out to your car and have a listen. Anything to reset your frame of reference.

You are absolutely right about switching monitors. I found out my XK2 does sound pretty good when recorded and then played back. Listening while playing you don`t really have a good idea. Also my mixes have way too much bass. On my home stereo sounds pretty good. In my car all I get is thud, thud, thud, instead of throom. Listen thru walkman on up to "THX" if you have it. Should sound good on all of 'em. Casey

 "Let It Be!"

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