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  #1  
Old 2013-03-12, 20:29
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johanbackman johanbackman is offline
 
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Lost in the mixing/ mastering... RE 60 Real Time Spectrum Analyser.?

Hi,

Recently I'm having a problem with the mastering. I'm no longer sure if my reference speakers are truly a good reference after hearing the same songs in other devices. Any tips on a more systematic approach to decent mastering/ mixing?? I have considered the RE 60 Real Time Spectrum Analyser. Or some other post processing tool? Your feedback would be highly appreciated.

My latest work which (I think) is a little off in the mixing... or?

https://soundcloud.com/jalandmusic/endless-lullaby
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  #2  
Old 2013-03-13, 02:59
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mmichalski mmichalski is offline
 
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Hey, I like this track! Has an Alan Parsons vibe going on along with some trippiness.

As far as your reference speakers go, while it is good to have a good pair of monitors, it is more important that you know your monitors/speakers. Know their tendencies, know your space. You are doing the right thing by listening in other environments. That will tell you things. But honestly, I thought the mix was solid. My ears are telling me it needs some proper glue on the mix buss and some low/high filtering/shelving so that it has some more air/sparkle, but the mix is pretty solid.

Nice track. Looking forward to more.
  #3  
Old 2013-03-13, 18:55
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johanbackman johanbackman is offline
 
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Hi and thanks for your feedback!

Just listened to your tracks, indeed very beautiful productions and mixing.
Not sure I understand the "glue on the mix buss" part... Low/high pass filtering I have been using on some channels, but not in a systematic approach. Any tips on where I could find more info regarding EQ techniques? Would you recommend any spectrum analyser?

Thanks again!
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  #4  
Old 2013-03-14, 01:11
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mmichalski mmichalski is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johanbackman View Post
Hi and thanks for your feedback!

Just listened to your tracks, indeed very beautiful productions and mixing.
Not sure I understand the "glue on the mix buss" part... Low/high pass filtering I have been using on some channels, but not in a systematic approach. Any tips on where I could find more info regarding EQ techniques? Would you recommend any spectrum analyser?

Thanks again!
Thanks for the listens!

Glue on the mix buss refers to slight compression on the main, or mix, buss. The SSL bus compressor in Reason is perfect for this. In general, have that baby bouncing between 2-4 db in reduction. Some will do a bit more, some a bit less, but the idea is to control the transients so that everything gets "glued together".

As far as EQ, specifically high and low pass filtering, a good general rule of thumb is to start with the high pass while soloing a channel. Dial the frequency up until you notice it doing something, then drop the knob back a bit. Again, this is just a general rule of thumb. Do this to every channel. I don't use low pass on every channel. I do use it to tame hats or cymbals and on also on the bass, depending on what the mix calls for. Sometimes it is useful on a synth part with a bit too much gas on the resonance as well.

Spectrum analyzers are great tools, but I try not to touch them until after I let my ears do all they can on their own. I use them mainly if I am having trouble locating a particularly troublesome frequency in one of the tracks or if I just want to see what I have removed, but I try to let my ears make all the decisions for me.

Of course, this is all just what I do and I am hardly a great engineer. I am sure others have different approaches, but I think this is a good place to start. There are lots of resources on the web. There are some good videos in the Props library and I also like the work of Graham from The Recording Revolution (recordingrevolution.com).

Hope this helps and, if I have misled you anywhere here, I am sure someone else will correct me. There are very few "right" answers, but there are solid approaches and that is what I have tried to outline here.

Michael
  #5  
Old 2013-03-14, 20:50
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johanbackman johanbackman is offline
 
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Hi Michael,

Thanks a lot for the feedback, very much appreciated! I now understand the gluing part... makes sense

I will try these hands on tips and trust my ears (who needs to rest for a couple of days first... ;-). The lowpass on hats and cymbals was interesting, I have never tried that (intentionally anyway). I guess the idea with that is primarily to leave room for vocals in the upper spectrum?

Regarding spec analyser, I just saw that such will be included in the Reason 7. No point to buy the RE then...

Thanks again,
Johan
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  #6  
Old 2013-03-14, 21:52
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lunastationnadj lunastationnadj is offline
 
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Great track!

Mixing sounds fine to me, but I always like a touch of rawness rather than over-production.

Some great advice on this thread too. Would really like to hear what changes you make.
  #7  
Old 2013-03-15, 12:41
MikeRex MikeRex is offline
 
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Hi (and apologies to Propellerhead, but you won't accept vst plugins),

If you really want to bring your recordings to life, use iZotope's Ozone 5 mastering software.

I use a copy of Sonar LE provided free with a control surface keyboard to host the Ozone software. Export your completed mix as an audio file from Reason and import it into Ozone.

I do the mastering in 2 stages, first Excite and Widen which boosts it up a bit, then a second process on top of that. I find that Country Master Pop, CM Rock, Rock Master Indie, and RM Pop work well. Export each version as an audio file, then remove that process (keeping the Excite and Widen), re-process with the next one, export that, and so on.

You will end-up with several different masters which you can then compare using headphones, your monitor speakers and your main audio set-up when you burn them onto a cd. Decide which one you like the best (some bring out certain instruments or vocal parts more clearly than the others) and keep that as your final mastered song.
  #8  
Old 2013-03-15, 16:20
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mmichalski mmichalski is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeRex View Post
Hi (and apologies to Propellerhead, but you won't accept vst plugins),

If you really want to bring your recordings to life, use iZotope's Ozone 5 mastering software.
While it is not the same as the whole Ozone suite, the Ozone limiter is available as an RE, and it sounds fantastic.
  #9  
Old 2013-03-15, 20:40
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johanbackman johanbackman is offline
 
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Hi,

Thanks for the concrete feedback! I'm not familiar with these programs, but it sure sounds interesting. I'm a newbie so please excuse my perhaps dumb question, but what does Ozone do that cannot be done already in Reason? I like the approach of making several alternative mixings and compare in different devices.

Thanks again,
Johan
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  #10  
Old 2013-03-15, 21:31
EXCONGUITAR EXCONGUITAR is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 30
Johan,
I battled trying to get a mastered track by using Reason alone for a LONG time. Dude, Reason can NOT, i repeat, CAN NOT do what Ozone does for mastering. Trust me!
use reason to get the best 2 channel mix you can possibly get. Then run that mix thru ozone, it's the only way your going to get what your looking for.
 

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