What are your favorite EQ's for Stem mixing?

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petreestow
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What are your favorite EQ's for Stem mixing?

Post by petreestow » Wed May 07, 2008 7:57 am

Drums
Guitars
Bass
Vocals
Backing Vocals

Tell me, when you do a stem mix, how do like the EQ for each track to get that seperation? Do you use FX such as parallel compression/reverbs?

Just interested in some new methods out there

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JohnDavisNYC
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Post by JohnDavisNYC » Wed May 07, 2008 8:06 am

Why would eqing be any different when mixing to stems?

Ears are awesome. Not the eqs, the ones on your head,

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fossiltooth
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Post by fossiltooth » Wed May 07, 2008 8:41 am

I am equally confused.

I feel as if I have stumbled out of my kitchen and into a nebula.
Last edited by fossiltooth on Wed May 07, 2008 8:44 am, edited 2 times in total.

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JGriffin
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Post by JGriffin » Wed May 07, 2008 8:43 am

See, in my apartment the nebula is just off the dining room.
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Post by MoreSpaceEcho » Wed May 07, 2008 9:00 am

i am widthenizing the shit outta this thread and i don't feel the least bit bad about it.

Image

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Nick Sevilla
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Re: What are your favorite EQ's for Stem mixing?

Post by Nick Sevilla » Wed May 07, 2008 9:08 am

petreestow wrote:Drums
Guitars
Bass
Vocals
Backing Vocals

Tell me, when you do a stem mix, how do like the EQ for each track to get that seperation? Do you use FX such as parallel compression/reverbs?

Just interested in some new methods out there
I think you are very confused.

Stems are simply solo'ed tracks, grouped into whatever convenient grouping scheme the engineer devises. it does not involve any further processing of any kind.

In fact, it is advisabe to turn OFF any master buss processing, in order to more easily print stems, so that the master buss processing can be correctly applied at a later time, in the re-mix.

Cheers
Howling at the neighbors. Hoping they have more mic cables.

MoreSpaceEcho
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Post by MoreSpaceEcho » Wed May 07, 2008 9:20 am

ok i want to try and post something vaguely helpful,
as opposed to just pretty to look at, but i am coming up empty...

neverminding the stem aspect for a moment,
i think your question is just too vague.
what kind of music are we talking about?
metal? funk? country? indie rock? klezmer?
how is the recording? are the tracks in good shape or
do they need a bunch of work?

see what i mean? it's not like you can say
"i always cut 315 on guitars and boost 4k on snare."

petreestow
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Post by petreestow » Wed May 07, 2008 9:25 am

i guess i'm just looking to hear every instrument distinctly in the mix. i thought stemming then eqing could help separate each instrument so everything is heard clearly.

i primarily record rock and roll

drums - 2 cond OH's, 57's on the Snare + Htom, d112 on K and floor tom
bass direct
guitar - 57's

58's as room mics

MoreSpaceEcho
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Post by MoreSpaceEcho » Wed May 07, 2008 9:56 am

ok, well if you just push up the faders and pan things how you like them, how does it sound just like that?

is it a mess or does it sound alright?

if you're just talking about a 'basic' rock recording, i.e. drums/bass/2guitars/vox,i don't think you need to worry about stems.
just use eq (if necessary) on the individual tracks.

and, if things DO need eq, it's entirely possible that the eq you need on the snare is different from what you need on the kick/overheads/etc.

so for example if you have the drums as a stem and you need to take a bunch of low mids outta the kick, you're gonna end up killing the snare in the process. you know?

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Nick Sevilla
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Post by Nick Sevilla » Wed May 07, 2008 10:11 am

petreestow wrote:i guess i'm just looking to hear every instrument distinctly in the mix. i thought stemming then eqing could help separate each instrument so everything is heard clearly.

i primarily record rock and roll

drums - 2 cond OH's, 57's on the Snare + Htom, d112 on K and floor tom
bass direct
guitar - 57's

58's as room mics
No. separating and then mixing instruments will absolutely not accomplish this "separation" you want.

Try recording the instruments in their own eparate session.

Then use a common reverb / delay to bring them together to the same soundstage. This way you can control how "together" or "separate" they are from each other.

Creative use of EQ can also help separate instruments that are sonically similar, i.e. they have similar sound ranges.

Cheers
Howling at the neighbors. Hoping they have more mic cables.

RoyMatthews
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Post by RoyMatthews » Wed May 07, 2008 10:17 am

Do you mean a Bus instead of a stem? Bussing is routing X amount of tracks to a separate fader which you can then process or just use the fader to control the level of those grouped channels. A stem is a mixed blend of signals (say all the drums) to a mono or stereo file or track. You'd use stems to send a session to someone else as a reference to record to. A drum stem, bass, vocal stem, and guitar stem. Also some people send stems to the mastering session to put off the decision making a little longer or to have more flexibility. If you really are using stems then I wouldn't process them at all after the fact. The point is to keep the sound the same.

If you mean bussing then, yeah, I put an eq on that sometimes. Usually just a 'sweetener' to add a bit oh high end on a drum bus. Or if I have a group of vocal tracks that I know I want to process the same then I'll eq the bus instead of cutting the lows on ten separate tracks.

There's no special or best EQ for this though. I usually use the Pultec plugin on the drum bus but it's totally song specific. As MoreSpaceEcho said the music is going to dictate what it needs to be done to it. Try something and see how it sounds.

Usually a little goes along way. if you find you really need to crank a frequency then the problem is probably before the bus and you should deal with it there.

You may know this already though.
"If there's one ironclad rule of pop history, it's this: The monkey types Hamlet only once."

nordberg
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Post by nordberg » Wed May 07, 2008 9:36 pm

1. the radiohead stems are in another topic
2. i've been looking for a place with a nebula for a while you lucky bastards. (for that etherial tone!)
3. seriously though... try cutting 315 and adding a bunch of 4k. that'll probably give you the separation you're looking for whilst buss eq'ing groups of instruments.

:lol:

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Post by Recycled_Brains » Thu May 08, 2008 6:18 am

Is that Jesus in the middle of that picture?
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Post by vvv » Thu May 08, 2008 4:12 pm

I'm a big fan of Nebula ...
bandcamp; vlayman;
THD; Geronimo Cowboys;
blog.
I mix with olive juice.

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Post by KennyLusk » Thu May 08, 2008 5:45 pm

stems are evil - so are seeds.
"The mushroom states its own position very clearly. It says, "I require the nervous system of a mammal. Do you have one handy?" Terrence McKenna

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