Panning preferences?

general questions, comments and ideas about recording, audio, music, etc.
Verboten
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Panning preferences?

Post by Verboten » Tue May 13, 2003 12:44 pm

Do any of you favour certain panning positions for particular instruments? For instance, I don't know why, but I like hearing my main guitar lines on the left (10 o'clock) and rhythmic guitars on the right (3-4 o'clock).

Sometimes I feel it gets a little monotonous, but often, when I record the parts, I hear them there already?

Just wondering if anybody else does this?

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Rick Hunter
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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by Rick Hunter » Tue May 13, 2003 12:54 pm

I usually record the guitar with two different mics and then pan them hard left and right. then put any other guitar or keyboard tracks in the middle, or only slightly to the left or right. Not very ground breaking but it works... You know what album has the coolest panning is Mr. Bungle's Clown CD. Good stuff.

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AnalogElectric
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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by AnalogElectric » Tue May 13, 2003 1:25 pm

I've been tracking everything in mono and then panning during the mix to taste. I guess I do set up so guitars are left/right (not always hard panned--usually 2 mics for each pass with a darker tone hard panned one way and a brighter mic just a bit off center, respectively to the other overdubbed gtr's) and sometimes another track OD in the center for the chorus'. Drums are spread by the position of the kit. I'll even go so far as to offset the snare if the drummer has it a little bit off center. I've been really happy with recording bass with a Sansamp DI to one track and a mic on another then panning them left/right. It allows the bass to rest very nicely in the mix while allowing the kick to stand out in the center. Sometimes I'll do the opposite, bass in the center and two kick mics panned hard left/right. All depends on what sounds good for the band.

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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by Lostboy » Tue May 13, 2003 1:25 pm

i'm working on a project with lots of accoustic guitars and occasional electric guitar leads. i think it sounds best with the accoustic rhythm guitars at 10 degrees left or right (or both, since some songs have two guitars playing different rhythm parts). i panned the electric guitars hard left and hard right, and since most of the lead lines are broken up between the two guitars, there's kind of a neat interweaving effect. i think panning really depends on the type of music you're playing, or how many instruments you're using. what kind of music are you talking about? if you only have a guitar, bass, and drums, it's probably best to mic the guitar amp with two different mics and split the pan between left and right so it sounds more full. or, pan the guitar a bit to the left, then play and record the same part panned to the right the same number of degrees.

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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by markpar » Tue May 13, 2003 1:28 pm

Sometimes when I've recorded two tracks of snare (top and bottom) I'll pan them slightly left and right to "embiggen" the sound of the drum.

-mark

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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by Verboten » Tue May 13, 2003 1:38 pm

[what kind of music are you talking about? ]

Well - I'm mostly doing rock, kinda post-punk sound. I do a lot of overdubs and usually sub.mix those to 2 or 3 tracks. Sometimes I'll have up to 10-12 incidental parts supporting a main line or a counter melody line.

I guess what I'm asking is less technical and more intuitive - do any of you prefer hearing things on one side or another? For instance, sometimes I'll send a lead to the right, but it never sounds good there... I almost always prefer it on the left side. However, rhythmic parts almost always sound better on the ride side. It's weird and I've just noticed that after 16 years of recording!

Just wondering if anyone else was freaky on panning?[/quote]

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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by ottokbre » Tue May 13, 2003 1:53 pm

go mono!
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Verboten
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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by Verboten » Tue May 13, 2003 1:56 pm

Odd that you say that - I've just begun doing my drums in mono - thanks in large part to the effortless wisdom of this board!!!

Just can't do less than 6 guitars tho' :roll:

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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by dwelle » Tue May 13, 2003 2:05 pm

hey adam, have you ever had any problems with the bass tracks panned? I used to screw around with this a lot (bass mic one side, bass di the other), but something seemed intuitively wrong about doing it that way. i would always check mono for phase. this was some time ago when i knew less than i do now, and i've moved away from it. but now you've got me thinking.......

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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by hurricaneE » Tue May 13, 2003 2:11 pm

newjusto wrote:I usually record the guitar with two different mics and then pan them hard left and right. then put any other guitar or keyboard tracks in the middle, or only slightly to the left or right.
Me, too. I think I subconsciously kinda go for a faux mono, with only the drums obviously panned. Room mics hard panned, snare and kick center, toms between 2&3 and 9&10. Most overdubs are either center or done with two mics and panned to fit but still balancing one another. Usually the freq. response differences in the mics pairs (usually a Royer 122 and U87, or matched Earthworks SROs) allows for some subtle movement in the stereo image so it doesn't sound too static (I think) -E (also in DC)

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AnalogElectric
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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by AnalogElectric » Tue May 13, 2003 2:37 pm

dwelle wrote:hey adam, have you ever had any problems with the bass tracks panned? I used to screw around with this a lot (bass mic one side, bass di the other), but something seemed intuitively wrong about doing it that way. i would always check mono for phase. this was some time ago when i knew less than i do now, and i've moved away from it. but now you've got me thinking.......

Anytime I pan ANYTHING I usually run in to issues. Sure phasing is sometime a problem but I normally don't monitor the bass just on it's own while checking phase. I've trusted my ears more than watching the phase meter on my board (I find that some things that are out of phase with each other are in phase once other instruments are introduced). The only thing I really concern myself with is the relationship between the bass and kick drum. Panning the bass finally has that dimension to the bass I've been looking for. One problem I'll run in to is usually one side has more attack than the other making it seem a bit 'lopsided'. I'll either compensate with EQ, compression, or ultimately place the kick drum and guitars so they 'appear' to pan out equally. It definitely changed the way I mix but for the better. My mixes have been much heavier since I've done this. I used to be an advocate for one bass track only, then to wonder why the bass didn't sound huge enough. I've also been mixing the bass in quite a bit louder than normal so when it gets mastered it saturates the mix making everything sound big like concert speakers without distorting. Bass used to really make me mad but now I finally like the results.

-- Adam Lazlo
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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by logancircle » Tue May 13, 2003 3:23 pm

Let's say you recorded acoustic guitar using DI and a mic. Since the mic'd signal would get to the recorder a slight bit later than the DI, should you delay the DI the fraction of a second it takes for the mic signal to get there? I was thinking that this way they would get there at the same time and not phase. Is that the way it works or would that not be realistic?

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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by dwelle » Tue May 13, 2003 5:03 pm

heavier bass = good.

thanks adam, i'll get back to trying that. i thought i was crazy or something...

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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by sonariste » Tue May 13, 2003 8:42 pm

I record everything in mono. In mixing I may pan toms a tiny bit but overhead is mono, ( I always do OH with one mic). room mics might be stereo if it was a great room. Most of the time I pick the best of the room mics and use only one of them, mono.

guitars may be panned a bit, rythem in a fake stereo buss 8msec panned hard if it is a big "new rock" track. lead out to one side 10 degrees or so.

In the old days of viynl the law was, "kick bass, and floor tom always up the middle. That ensured no "lift out"problems for the cutting engineer. but nowadays anything goes.

I still like my BD and Bass up the middle.

I leave stereo for the efx returns and to split out Backing vox and piano, synth extra guitar riffs.

( I still record piano in mono too.) to me, piano is heard by the listener as mono unless you are the player, then you might hear high notes far right and bass a little to the left.

If it was piano and vocal, or guitar and vocal only, I might go for a stereo piano or acc guitar sound but that never happens for me.

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I'm Painting Again
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Re: Panning preferences?

Post by I'm Painting Again » Tue May 13, 2003 9:20 pm

logancircle wrote:Let's say you recorded acoustic guitar using DI and a mic. Since the mic'd signal would get to the recorder a slight bit later than the DI, should you delay the DI the fraction of a second it takes for the mic signal to get there? I was thinking that this way they would get there at the same time and not phase. Is that the way it works or would that not be realistic?
I have rec guit this way before and used a logic plug called phase aid with very very good results..

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