Mixing with/without a SUB

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Mixing with/without a SUB

Post by logancircle » Wed Jun 27, 2007 7:47 am

I mix on Event TR-8 monitors and think they're great for the price. My buddy Brad (Wedge on TOMB) has some smaller monitors with no bass, so he got a sub and we did a crossover at like 90Hz and now everything is awesome. I've tested the TR-8's and they do go down to like 33Hz, same as his sub, but when you listen to any commercial record on his system the bass just kills--you really feel it hit you. Is this a good thing for mixing mostly rock or bad? Consequently, I started thinking of getting a sub, but maybe having such powerful bass would lead to bounces that sound weak on consumer audio systems. Any thoughts?
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Post by drumsound » Wed Jun 27, 2007 10:31 am

I don't have a sub, but I tested a system with an integrated sub before I bought what I have now. If I were to use a sub I would want it to be subtle, I'd just want to hear some extention, not a whole bunch of thumping bass. The system I was looking at had a foot switch option to cut off the sub and I though that was cool too.

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Post by logancircle » Wed Jun 27, 2007 10:46 am

That's kinda what I was thinking. Is there a DIY way to calibrate near-field speaker levels so they are truly flat for the listener (Event claims the TR-8's are). It might just mean that this is an excellent listening environment, but lopsided for mixing. Big studios I've been in (and nice headphones I've used) have had incredible power and definition in the kick drum, more than my near-fields, so I'm kinda confused. ?
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Post by wedge » Wed Jun 27, 2007 11:45 am

Tis true that there's a "negative effect", in that, the more bass your system pumps while mixing, the more you'll tend to turn down the bass in the mix, so the less bass there tends to be in the finished mix...

However, my only squeak here is that my command of the bottom end (and I ain't talkin' bout my sexual prowess) in my mixes has improved dramatically since I installed my sub. I've tweaked the sub volume, too, to make sure I wasn't getting something too out of balance...

The proof's in the pudding, and for me, so far, so good...

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Post by kayagum » Wed Jun 27, 2007 12:14 pm

I actually treat my subwoofer as an additional speaker out. I can punch it in as needed in conjuction with my current monitors if I need to reference the low end. I generally mix without the subwoofer so I can hear the mid detail better.
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Post by Mane1234 » Fri Jun 29, 2007 2:48 am

I've finally decided I need a sub soon. Most likely after treating the room in August. Without it I feel like I'm just guessing about the bottom end thing. I end up taking all my mixes over to a studio to listen and then run back and make some adjustments...It's getting old.
Of course I've had it in the ear before.....

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Post by logancircle » Fri Jun 29, 2007 2:44 pm

I know it's not ideal at all. but can't one just put on some [good, flat] headphones to reference bass issues? I'm only thinking this because bass is usually up the middle mixed around. There may be something dreadfully wrong with that idea, but I think it works.
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Post by wedge » Sat Jun 30, 2007 12:46 am

logancircle wrote:There may be something dreadfully wrong with that idea
From my own experience, and from other o-pines on this board, I would say that headphones are a poor way to accurately reference bass...

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Post by qball » Sat Jun 30, 2007 6:50 am

I have the Event TR8 monitors and use a sub for checking the low extention ONLY. I mix everything on the TR8s to sound good, including bass, then I turn on the sub to hear how the extended lows sound. I'll then make tweaks to the low freqs (usually anything below 60Hz) till it sounds good with the sub on.

My theory is that most people will listen to the material on smaller systems, so if I start out getting it to sound good without the sub, then it will work out for those people. To make sure that it sounds good for those who have bigger "better" sound systems, I'll make the final low freq treaks with the sub on.

Now if I can only find a solution for the TR8 lack of high freq that I experience...
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Post by 8th_note » Sat Jun 30, 2007 11:13 am

I have a sub and I mix with it activated all the time. The difference between me and wedge, however, may be that I've set up my sub to be very subtle. If a sub makes the bass "really hit you" on typical commercial recordings then you've got it set quite high.

I've setup my sub to discreetly extend the lows of my bookshelf monitors. It has tremendously helped me get the bass right on my mixes. I pretty much nail it on the first go-round now whereas before I had to listen on several different systems and adjust the mix several times.

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Post by joel hamilton » Sun Jul 01, 2007 6:15 am

I mix with a sub only on my mains, and flip back to NS10's or a boom box for another "opinion."

I wish more people mixed with some speakers that have some OOMPH to them. Make it engaging... make it hit you. make something that moves the cones, and engages the listener...

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Post by Feedback » Thu Jul 05, 2007 9:46 am

8th_note wrote:I have a sub and I mix with it activated all the time. The difference between me and wedge, however, may be that I've set up my sub to be very subtle. If a sub makes the bass "really hit you" on typical commercial recordings then you've got it set quite high.

I've setup my sub to discreetly extend the lows of my bookshelf monitors. It has tremendously helped me get the bass right on my mixes. I pretty much nail it on the first go-round now whereas before I had to listen on several different systems and adjust the mix several times.
This is exactly how I use my rig. I also have another set of nearfields sans the sub so I can switch back and forth....not to mention some consumer speakers as well hooked up to my "studio out" for yet a third reference.

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Post by T-rex » Fri Jul 06, 2007 9:07 pm

I have a sub that I can switch in and out with my nearfields and then a set of $10 computer speakers that rule.

I just listened to a shitload of music that I like and am familiar with and set it up that way. Not very scientific but it works well. I use it a lot at the beginning of a mix when I am getting the bass and drums together and I will do a few checks in the middle of a mix just to see how the bottom is holding up against the rest of the track. It's great when you can feel the bass drum hitting you in the chest and the sub, then you click over to the little 3" soundblaster speakers and you can still hear it cutting through.

M-audio has that new sub with a footswitch to turn it on and off. I think that's freakin brilliant although I have no idea how it sounds.
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Post by the riff » Fri Jul 06, 2007 9:31 pm

I love my NS-10's with a Sub. I also have a small boombox that I bounce over to for another option...

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Post by lionaudio » Sun Jul 08, 2007 7:03 pm

joel hamilton wrote:I mix with a sub only on my mains, and flip back to NS10's or a boom box for another "opinion."

I wish more people mixed with some speakers that have some OOMPH to them. Make it engaging... make it hit you. make something that moves the cones, and engages the listener...
i agree, and i can say you definitely walk the walk on this issue.. the battle of mice album fucking blew me away when i first heard it.. i have a shitty stereo in my explorer and i usually cannot feel or hear much bass in it and a day of nights fucking crushed me.. do you have anything online about the process you used to record and mix this album?

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