Mixing help, (or) throw me a fricken bone

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T-rex
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Post by T-rex » Sun Sep 16, 2012 7:15 am

lee wrote:Has anyone ever noticed, not only the fine wisdom of audio experience in the Tomb, but the excellent grammar? Is there some parallel that I'm unaware of?
I am certainly not a phenomenal linguist by any stretch of the imagination but I have really noticed this in the last few years. Other than recording I am also a car nut and in the last few years I have joined a couple of car forums and I am constantly amazed at how absolutely awful the posts are on there. I know some of the things are probably texting/phone induced errors but if I had a nickel for every time someone confused "brakes" with "break" I would be rocking a Neve console. TOMB was the forum I was ever involved with and I had just become accustomed to relatively understandable posting.
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MoreSpaceEcho
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Post by MoreSpaceEcho » Sun Sep 16, 2012 9:28 am

ashcat_lt wrote:And I think this can apply to entire mix elements as well. Maybe that shaker track doesn't really need to stand out and say "I'm a shaker!" Maybe we don't need to hear the rosin on the bow of the cello track or every breath that the flutist takes.
yeah i think that lots of stuff sounds better if you can't actually hear it perfectly. mainly guitars and keyboard kinda stuff. which isn't to say i mix guitars quiet (far from it) but sometimes i find that certain parts sound more interesting when your ear can't quite make everything out. cause then your brain fills in what it *thinks* is happening, and usually the old brain makes up something cooler than what's really there.

so with that in mind, when i mix, i kind of divide things into two camps: stuff i want to hear clearly, and everything else. so for example, i don't want to guess what the singer's saying, i don't want to guess where the kick and snare are, or what the bass is playing....but that strummy rhythm guitar track, well it needs to be in there, but the details of it aren't too important. that rhodes track fills things out nicely, but it doesn't need to be front and center. etc.

the next track, the strummy rhythm part might be really great, so make that loud, and since that's driving the song, maybe the snare can be kinda quiet. i definitely think with some types of pop songs you can get away with mixing the snare pretty quiet, because the beat is so ingrained in mass consciousness already. everyone KNOWS the beat's boom bap boom boom bap, you don't necessarily have to hit them over the head with it.

i think it's important to keep the focus on as few things as possible, as often as possible. i hear lots of music where there's like 700 things happening all the time, and it's mixed in such a fashion that all 700 of those things are right up front. my tired old mind can't process all that, and i just turn it off and put on 'refugee' instead.

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Gregg Juke
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Post by Gregg Juke » Sun Sep 16, 2012 11:43 am

You know, you don't have to live that way, Space. I for one think that you should revel in your abandon much more frequently...

GJ

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Post by vvv » Sun Sep 16, 2012 12:12 pm

I recall when that song came out, there was all the publicity about Viet boat people, and I remember thinking the song might be thought "not P.C.", except the term "P.C." wasn't yet in vogue.

This was back when we powered our cassette 4-tracks with hamster-wheels, of course, and walked miles barefoot in the snow to see Dwight Twilley.
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MoreSpaceEcho
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Post by MoreSpaceEcho » Sun Sep 16, 2012 3:53 pm

Gregg Juke wrote:You know, you don't have to live that way, Space.
*fights to be free*

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xpulsar
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Post by xpulsar » Fri Sep 21, 2012 2:36 am

I completely agree that most of the work of mixing is done in the tracking. This fact is the reason the Classic records sound the way the do. The chain of importance :Good Song and Arrangment>Great Musicians>Good or cool sounding Instruments>The room it is recorded in>The Engineer Tracking it> The Equipment > The Engineer Mixing it .

I'll assume you are doing your mixing at home or in a space that is not acoustically designed? Not saying that you can't mix in this environment , but you will have to spend some time figuring out if records that actually sound really good , sound really good on your monitors and in the room you are working in.
If say for example , D'Angelo's "Voo Doo" does not sound "punchy" and have lots of richness in the low end. Then your monitors and your acoustical environment are not accurate. This fact will be fight you till the end and win.
If you are at all serious about getting better at mixing then you should consider investing in an accurate pair of monitors and find the best sounding place that you have access to for doing this mixing.

You should get some CD's and not MP3's of classic and well record records and sit and do some listening. Also, if you have a chance go and listen to these same CD's in well designed control room on a pair of near fields. This will be an eye opening experience. Try and take notes and to what these albums sound like in your space and in the designed control room.
One thing I can say for sure is that a well designed control room allows you to hear really small details and and allows you to actually tell if a pair of speakers suck or are sweet! Some of those classic records sound weird and some of them sound

-Collin

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xpulsar
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Post by xpulsar » Sat Sep 22, 2012 11:36 am

Sorry bad IPad typing. As I was saying some of those classic records don't sound all that great, but they have very interesting qualities and lets not forget great song writing . The Rolling Stones come to mind in this way.
-collin

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Dakota
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Post by Dakota » Sat Sep 22, 2012 1:01 pm

lee wrote:Has anyone ever noticed, not only the fine wisdom of audio experience in the Tomb, but the excellent grammar? Is there some parallel that I'm unaware of?
Absolutely! The high quality of communication and personalities on this board are way way above the internet average. Gratitude!

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Johnny Nowhere
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Post by Johnny Nowhere » Tue Sep 25, 2012 5:39 am

You mentioned a spec analyser but I'd completely roundcan that idea, however, Lee, it brings to mind a question: are you guilty of mixing with your eyes? I ask because it's a nasty habit that is easy to cultivate.

I go against the generally accepted rule and mix as I record because I usually hear the finished recording in my head (bearing in mind that I only record my own work) and I merely attempt to replicate that. I'll record 'from back to front', that is to say, I'll record the background instruments first and record/mix toward prominence.

I also do almost all of my mixing with my eyes closed, so as not to use visual references. Of course, you obviously can't approach 31 band stereo programme EQing in this manner, but I find that little is necessary once I have any particular individual track properly tweaked before hitting 'record'.

Again, I'll snub tradition and mix to 90% using my headphones, saving the final for the monitors, but the resultant monitor mix is nearly always copesetic.

Best of luck!
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beatlefan1970
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Re: Mixing help, (or) throw me a fricken bone

Post by beatlefan1970 » Thu Oct 04, 2012 10:37 am

I, too, am taken by the quality of the grammar here. It's so egregiously horrible in real-life that I had to chime in, English degree notwithstanding. Complete sentences, attention paid to punctuation, actual capitalization employed...I mean, this community even understands both the semi-colon AND the proper use of the colon! Possessives! Adverbs! Yea, verily.

That bit about the colon is sitting on a tee if anyone cares to knock it out of the park.

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vvv
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Post by vvv » Thu Oct 04, 2012 4:21 pm

Eh ...

So, yer sayin' we speak in "high-colonic"?
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