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Mixing Help!

Filed Under : Music , Other

Posted By : Chipps the Bassist | Comments : 9

Ideas, Advice, Tips & Tricks!

So currently in my music tech coursework, we have to mix a track we recorded ourselves at college. Basically just wondering if anyone had some ideas on how to achieve maybe some of the following:

A punchy and noticeable kick drum.
A punchy and tight sounding snare drum.
A noticeable, deep but clear bass sound.
A full sounding acoustic guitar sound.
+ any other good ideas or advice!

We have already run through some basic mixing techniques in class like gain staging, using compression and reverb etc. but I really want to get the best out of my mix, making it sound as full as possible and any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Neal :)

P.S. It would help greatly if you could also be specific as possible!

P.S.S. The track ive recorded is Numb by Linkin Park!
Thanks again :)


# Posted by Smitten Kitten - 30/03/2011, 23:41 (GMT)

Kick drum Boost around 10000Hz on your EQ makes it cut through like a knife, Also give it a tad around 50Hz to give it a bit of sub boominess lol and a bit of compression

Snare drum compress it and make sure the attack on your compressor is set to the fastest attack. and boost the treble end....... will have to find the frequency thats lets it cut through cos it varies. Also cut the bass out completely

Guitar just make sure you don't over compress it

Use as little processing as possible. If you have to drasticaly EQ something it needs re recording :P

# Posted by Smitten Kitten - 31/03/2011, 00:36 (GMT)

You'll probably wana use a noise gate on your snare drum aswell to get that realy tight sound....... Same with your kick but make sure the noise gate goes before your compressor on the chain....... Theres no right or wrongs realy just find the sweet spots on your EQ that makes each individual thing stand out and remove any of the bad bits

# Posted by Drummer Boy - 31/03/2011, 07:16 (GMT)

Basic rules always come through - probably a bit late, but ensre that all your recording sources are setup an tuned properly - Crap in, crap out always applies!!

The other posters offer some good advice, but I would also try and get the individual instruments sounding good on their own, then combine instruments in the same frequency ranges,such as Bass Drum and Bass Guitar. At this stage you'll probably find they occupy the same frequency space, and get in the way of each other.

There's 2 things I'd do at this point: 1) Side chain a compressor, to work as a ducker, on the bass guitar triggered by the bass drum, so that when the BD is struck the bass ducks slightly - this realy clears up the BD sound, without noticably impacting the Bass; 2) re EQ BD and Bass so that they are slightly different, and don't overlap too much. They might not sound as good in isolation, but it's the mix that counts.

Also, have a look at the forums on prosoundweb, and do some searching, there are some major players on there who know their stuff.

Happy mixing!!!

# Posted by Drummer Boy - 31/03/2011, 16:43 (GMT)

Oh, and I forgot, HPF everying at 100-150Hz, except, BD, Bass, floor tom and keys!! It keeps the bottom end a lot tighter, by reducing clutter that adds nothing to the end product.

Also, one reason that the bottom end on a lot of recordings (esp Linkin poark where they use a lot of drum samples), is that time alignement is very tight. So the instant the beat hits,the bass and drums are in perfect alignment. If alignment drifts it comes across as a slightly flabby bottom end to a listener.

Also, depending on the bass drum pattern, a very tight BD sound may benefit, as opposed to a John Bonham sound which works well for music with greater space in it.

Also, are you mixing on hardware, or 'in the box'?

# Posted by Gary Bill - bass - 31/03/2011, 18:07 (GMT)

Easy trick cheat i use, put a 2p where the kik beater hits the kik. Works wonders......
Also my old drummer wudnt gig if there wasnt a hanky on the snare to tighten the sound..... Scott from metalleeka lol

# Posted by Chipps the Bassist - 04/04/2011, 21:49 (GMT)

Cheers for the ideas guys, already done a few of these and can already here the difference!

Neal :)

# Posted by Jez - 04/04/2011, 22:10 (GMT)

acoustic guitar - 2 mics. One aimed at around 12th fret (condenser if available) and try one aimed at sound hole but take time and try near/far, on the angle; no hard a fast rule - its trial and error!!

@Foo - i was recommending the gaffer taped coin to our drummer last week!!!

as said, roll off the bass; its punch youre after. If it is crap on tape - compress it, gate it - and use it to trigger a sample!!! (wasn't Phil Collins triggering Linn 9000 samples on "In the Air Tonight"?)

# Posted by Jez - 04/04/2011, 22:12 (GMT)

..on samples, for a good snare try "Never Say Goodbye" by Bon Jovi of Slippery When Wet - 2 clear hits at start of song, add a gated reverb - 80s rocktastic!!!

# Posted by Willow (of somebig™Fish) (Reti... - 04/04/2011, 22:38 (GMT)

I always like to add a touch of EQ to the main vocal ... something over 12k ... say between 12 and 15 and experiment on the level ... adds a nice bit of "air" to the vocal, but not reverb

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