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Old 2011-05-25, 20:03
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Danoc Danoc is offline
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4,231
Mixing Tips for Newbies in a simple form

Mixing in record for newbies
Peace. Here is a way for those that are new to mixing. Don't be scared of the SSL9000K because you see a lot of buttons.

First you need to learn a layout this is what I use:

1.Kick drums should be in the center of the track.
2.Snare can be in the center or 11 oclock to the left slighty
3.Hihat place this center slightly to the left.
4.Ride cymbal place this center slightly to the right
5.Tomtoms layed out from high pitched to low pitche, left to right.
6.Crash cymbals put them where they fit and are easily accessible.

If you want to do a decent mix it starts with approaching it in the stereo field to cut frequencies and give breathing room to each instrument element.

1. Place priority on mixing the drums and bass first. A sold drum and bass foundation gives your mix a strong backbone. If you focus on the drums and bass, cutting frequencies and getting the levels correct everything else falls into place easy. You want to cut some highs off the drums and bass so you can hear the lows and harmonics and dynamics of it. This is how the pros do it. I prefer to bring the drums/snare, kick and hihat, up to 0.0db, so all the other sounds can be leveled to it's standard. But never make the hihat as loud bring that down just so you can hear a taste of it in the groove to give the drum, snare and bass spice.

2. Vocals, start mixing them with the drums and bass at this point and make sure the levels are correct and watch your levels on your external board or Protools, Logic, Sonar etc. Make sure they don't go into the red. Once you are done fixing up all points of the vocals, from main, to adlibs etc then move to step three.

3. Once the drums/snare/bass kick/hihat and vocals are solid, add in your other melodic tracks such as guitar, piano, strings, etc. Leave out any percussion sounds and sound effects at this point. Pan those melodic sounds AROUND THE VOCALS, don't make them compete in the stereo field because it will sound muddy and mushy, to pan is giving the instruments frequencing breathing room. Find a spatial pocket for each instrument. You want the instruments to support the vocals.

4. Save the percussion and effects for last. It's wise to pan these last tracks outside your drums, bass, vocal, and melodic tracks. Use your percussion and effects to fill in spaces in the mix that seem unbalanced.

I use 24bit no noise drums, because they are easy to move around in the stereo field for mixing and supporting the entire track in general. If I want dirt I add the dirt to my drums.

I hope this helped and you should have a decent mix, practice makes perfect.

Peace to you all.

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