crash course on mixin .../mastering

Discussion in 'Audio Help & Tips' started by YoungWon, Jun 22, 2009.

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  1. YoungWon

    YoungWon forwords to be forwarned

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    yeah....ive been reading over alot of things trying to under stand mixin and masterin a bit more but i stiil dont no much sooo...

    compression....wat exzactly does it do beside equal out the highs n lows...does each voice have a certain bestt compression rate?,.......wat exzactly is attack n realease do....wat does flat n expand exzactly do......eq...i usually just take em up or down till i think it sound good but i really dunt no wat im doing...r ne of em pose go one way or another ..ex high up , middle down , low down ..lol... thro in a lil reverb ....anything else???..

    with overdubs do everything the samw but make a lil lower ....n if i compress main vox 2:1 do the dubs like 4:1 so its more compressed or is that wrong.....

    i only recenty found out mixing n mastering were seprate lol....only justt started doin this on my own dude i used to record wit moved to san fran....

    wit mastering do you do wat u did to the main vox or dubs before that....or does it get its own treatment.....

    and anything else i needs to know or work on.......


    oh n i was watchin something on tv on john lennon.....how he would sing on something twice to strenthen his vox or sumthin...if u no wat i mean xplain


    thanks
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  2. Mr. ROUSH

    Mr. ROUSH WWW.SOUNDCLICK.COM/ROUSH

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    This is a very large question you have here.. I'm going to shoot you some links below for you to get started with to read up and understand the things that you asked about, starting with compression:

    Compression Explained

    Mastering:

    Audio Music Mastering Guide

    the most simple explanation of mastering versus mixing is this.. mixing is adjusting the levels of each track (vocals / insturments / audio / midi etc) and applying whatever effects to each track individually.. mastering is essentially applying effects on the entire song by putting effects on a stereo mix of the song.. I posted something a little more detailed in response to a mastering question in this forrum.. check that out..

    Doubled vocals: A big part of what makes vocals stand out and much louder than they are actually recorded is by doubling the vocals.. either by literally recording a second identical take.. or you can even copy the original and just paste it in a new track.. If you record your doubles make sure that you record them exactly the same as the original lead vocal, unless you are going for a different result as an effect..

    so start with the above links and also read my recording 101 thread stickied at the top of this forrum.. there are some things explained there that are relative to your questions, and also some other things you'll want to know about in addition to what you asked about. If you encounter any more specific questions, or need clarification, just let me know. Pz
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  3. YoungWon

    YoungWon forwords to be forwarned

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    yeah i already read the recording 101 thing...i been tinkering with it all day...first time i actullly made a effort figure out the high and low extreme to each effect....

    i sorta figured out soem of my question.......but i kinda need it in lamens terms



    attack and release??


    the more you compress the low the vox go or is it oppisit...

    what are flat and expand...

    but ima read the links you left now...i've been reading other links some of it has been helpfull some hasn't
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  4. Mr. ROUSH

    Mr. ROUSH WWW.SOUNDCLICK.COM/ROUSH

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    Ok.. in the most generic terms I can put it in.. compression alters the frequencies.. it lowers the loud passages that might clip.. but it also raises the low passages, so that they are relative to each other... so.. if I sing half a verse very soft.. and the other half very loud.. it would basically level them out so that you can hear every word more clearly..

    attack = how long it takes for the compressor to start compressing the signal.. You want a fast attact time because you want it to start right from the beginning of each word or phrase.. not half way through the word.. slower attact times will delay the compression from starting until x amount of time has passed from the point where the signal hit the compressor.. so a slow attack time would mean you are not compressing the beginning of the verse or phrase and it would start compressing in the middle of words or phrases

    release: This is how long the compressor stays on from the point that it starts compressing the signal.. you want a medium release time usually for vocals.. so for example.. if you had your release time too fast then it would not compress the entire phrase or line etc.. but you want it set fast enough that it releases in between pauses from the signal.

    ratio: for vocals you will want to use a ratio between 4:1 and 6:1 as far as rap..
    the higher the ratio the more the compression.. the lower the ration the less the compression.. Don't overdo compression.. you'll add more compression in the mastering stage to the stereo mix.. so I would stay closer to the 4:1 .. maybe even drop it down to 3:1 .. a good trick is to use 2 compressors instead of 1, and use lower settings.. so maybe the first one set to 2:1 and the second also 2:1.. two work together more effectively than 1 alone.. just don't overdo it.

    look at the meter to set your threshold.. you'll likely end up somewhere between -10 to -20 you want to set it to just compress the peaks of the signal to prevent them from clipping. I hope this helps some.. it's not easy to explain nor to understand.. I HEAVILY recommend the book. "home recording for dummies" .. not calling you a dummy, but that book helped me tremendously at the begginning to understand the foundation of recording and effects processing.. look for that.. then get the mixing engineers handbook.. very helpful. One of the best resources though is Youtube go to youtube and type in "audio compression" It's easier to see than to read.. youtube has it all man.. just watch out for the lames that have no idea what they are talking about trying to explain stuff.. I'll find some better links for you and get back to you. pz.
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  5. YoungWon

    YoungWon forwords to be forwarned

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    yea about th thresh hold....it comes up as ...low cutoff and high cut off right...


    my high is at 2500 hz.....what is the average for the low ....so i know at least where to start at ...

    n i been reading all day so im starting to figure it out more ...

    last thing if you could just run threw graphic eq... do i use it or juse use the high mid low eq next to my track ...if i do use it ...whts th bsics on it...

    n ill check into that book...good lookin
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  6. YoungWon

    YoungWon forwords to be forwarned

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    o n with mastering to i compress n reverb n all that again

    or just eq it
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  7. Mr. ROUSH

    Mr. ROUSH WWW.SOUNDCLICK.COM/ROUSH

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    I'm not sure what you are referring to about the threshold.. low cut and hi cut are eq curves.. the threshold isn't measured in frequency.. it's just numbered.. don't cut your highs as a general rule.. at least not on the lead vocal.. if anything you might bump them up a little bit between 6-10khz .. you want to roll off the low end on your vocals since vocals don't usually occupy frequencies below 50hz to 100hz.. so try rolling them off around 60 to 80hz..

    don't use the graphic eq on your vocals.. use a parametric eq.. use the shelf or a curve to roll of your lows and bump your high end up. Do eq sweeps on the parametric eq to fine tune the mids if need be.. that could mean cutting probelm frequencies or boosting freqeuncies that seem to be missing.. pay special attention to the 1k to 5k range +/- also don't use the eq on the track itself.. leave that where it's at, at least for vocals.. good luck
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  8. Mr. ROUSH

    Mr. ROUSH WWW.SOUNDCLICK.COM/ROUSH

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    The most common mastering chain is EQ / COMPRESSOR (multiband preffered) / Stereo Imager / Limiter

    You can also use a reverb in there.. try it both before or after and use it where it sounds best.. but I caution you to use it very, very lightly in the mastering chain if at all.. and not every time.. You should not really be able to hear it.. it should only serve to make things sound a little bigger.. but if done right.. nobody should be able to say.. "oh there's a reverb on the master" as always good luck.
    test
  9. tonychalker

    tonychalker New Member

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    thanks for the tips
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  10. YoungWon

    YoungWon forwords to be forwarned

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    yeah....i cant find stereo or limiter in my effects


    and when we were talking bout the e0mu it comes with sonar cakealk . cubase.....are they the newest versions of each or the oldest versions of each
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  11. Mr. ROUSH

    Mr. ROUSH WWW.SOUNDCLICK.COM/ROUSH

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    You're welcome Tonychalker.. anytime..

    NephYou - What program and what version of that program are you using now? I wouldn't be suprised if there isn't a stereo imager, but every program I've run accrossed at least had a limiter. Look some more for that.. but if you clarify for me what program you're using then I'll be able to tell youf or sure.

    On the emu package.. It should come with more current versions of the software though off the shelf it may have been packaged with an older version prior to newer versions coming out.. furthermore they are "light" versions.. meaning they don't have all of the plugins and functionality of the full versions.. If I were you I would try to d/l a full version of the software..

    fyi.. sonar is a great program for windows.. great program..

    Get back to me on that. pz.
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  12. YoungWon

    YoungWon forwords to be forwarned

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    cool edit...

    n on e0mu it says just cubase le n sonar akewalk
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  13. Mr. ROUSH

    Mr. ROUSH WWW.SOUNDCLICK.COM/ROUSH

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    I covered this in the other post.. check it out..
    test
  14. synical

    synical Blow Gang/ESP

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    when it comes to eq'ing male vocals you want to mainly use 4 band eq's. 2500 kHz with Q 0.78 and 5000 kHz with Q 0.50 will help give your vocals presence and brighten up the cheap muddy mic sound. now don't use those settings as a strict guideline is just a general area to start, also you may want to roll off some of the 900 Hz Q 1.0 range as well. but keep in mind that when you eq and mix your goal is to set everything in its own frequency range so that the mix doesn't sound cluttered. kicks are good by boosting the 100-200 hz, bass guitar 100-250 hz, sub bass (808) 60-64 Hz, hats 7000 kHz..and so on and so forth. parallel compression is a great way to get a good knockin mix. use 2 compress and a limiter to achieve that. you may also want to put certain frequencies in a stereo spreader in order to sit it on the right frequency of the mix..i.e. guitars, vox,bass... 2:1,4:1 etc pertains to the amount of compression per beat in that bar...2:1, compress 2 beats every 1 bar, a parametric eq is great for guitars, pianos..hall and room reverbs will add great ******ce to your vocals..you may also want to edit your dynamics to give the mix an overall human/warmth feeling..but the key to mixing is using your ears and mixing at a low volume and make sure your as close to 0dB as possible without peaking because daw's have little headroom..also mic positioning does wonders for your vocals..i suggest you visit the audio engineer society website, get an eq magazine and use your ears, and before you mix listen to a professional recording whose quality you'd like to emulate so you can know your speakers frequency response range..its more than just panning and volume, if your tracks are not sitting in the proper frequency range your whole mix will sound very amature and cluttered...
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  15. Mr. ROUSH

    Mr. ROUSH WWW.SOUNDCLICK.COM/ROUSH

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    Not trying to knock your hustle or anything, but I wouldn't be doing you any justice if I didn't point out some things that need to be corrected about your theory.. #1.. ratio of comression has not 1 thing to do with bars and beats.. the ratio determines the input to output ratio of the audio as it goes above the threshold setting..

    here's the wiki definition if you don't want to take it from me..

    Ratio

    ratio determines the input/output ratio for signals above the threshold. For example, a 4:1 ratio means that a signal overshooting the threshold by 4 dB will leave the compressor 1 dB above the threshold. The highest ratio of ∞:1 is commonly achieved using a ratio of 60:1, and effectively denotes that any signal above the threshold will be brought down to the threshold level (unless some attack is in force).

    #2.. it doesn't matter how many bands the eq is as long as its enough for you to do what is necessary.. 4 bands is commonly enough I just don't want you to think the # of bands has anything to do with quality

    #3.. a limiter doesn't have anything to do with acheiving parralel compression.. that is accomplished with 2 compressors however.. in parralel to blend a lightly compressed version of the signal with a highly compressed version of the same signal.

    #4.. Daw's have TONS of headroom.. it has nothing to do with the DAW of itself.. it has to do with what you set the bit rate at.. commonly you set that at 24bits.. the point of which is to have ample headroom.. 24 bits is massive headroom to work with..


    last thing I promise.. after you attempted to explain "dynamic" compression.. you then said.. you may want to edit your dynamics too?.. this would suggest to me that you need to follow your own advice and pick that magazine back up.. no offense, but if you post something make sure it's accurate..
    test
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