What's Good RM Fam? I think it's about time for someone to drop these gems out there! I been using FL studio since it's been out, more seriously since 4.3, and always been one of those trying to stand up for it, although there's an apparent quality difference in comparison to reason/cubase/others. 1) MY biggest complaint has always been the "bass" in FL. It never seems to emulate it correctly. Well due to what people have called "Masking" and "Pan Laws" i think this may be the fix, once and for all. By Default, FL has the option for "Circular Pan Laws" ON. Some people dig it and believe it should be left alone. I DONT. Turn that ish off ASAP. Options -> Project General Settings -> Audio -> Untick Pan Law. Now give you ears a few moments to adjust, and play some older beats you have made in FL, and see if you noticed any difference? Especially in master volume and bass expression. 2) It also used to bother me that people would create a beat in FL studio, just to dump the tracks into another DAW and mix. Outside of that being a good learning experience, i believe it's a waste of time (in the big picture). When exporting your files in FL studio, make sure you are saving as .WAV and not MP3. For whatever unknown reason, the mp3 conversion process in FL studio is MEH @ best. So i convert to mp3 AFTER i use mastering/limiting plugins in another application, like Audition/Cool Edit/Wave Lab. It just sounds better that way. And if you're burning a CD of Beats to be mailed out, it's best to keep them as .wav as well. ALthough they are bigger file sizes. (32 bit wav). 3) Peaking and Limiting. That's always a noob issue. Either your mix is too distorted or too low. Well you can make your beat with FL Limiter ON by default, which will help tame your levels. However, it doesn't give you a true impression of your leveling skills with it on from the beginning. So turn it off or disable it while creating the beat, until you feel like you got a solid mix. Or use the "Soft Clipper". It's a great tool to use to make sure your levels don't get into distortion. Since i limit/compress my master track outside of FL, I prefer Soft Clipper or something similar. And remember also, on the step grid, all default samples are set to 80% which maybe be too LOUD when mixing with FL's mixer. So try turning down all levels (volume) to 60% THEN send to FL mixer, and adjust mix there. Drums/Snares not hitting? Well if you're using the step sequencer...DUH, the velocity is at default about 70%. So you can click the "Graph Editor" button at the top right of the step sequencer, and adjust your velocity levels. Which is also good to tweak for humanization. Also, the FL EQ 2 has some mastering presets floating around online that are good for raising your mix up a level without distortion. *google* 4) Stiff Drums. This seems to be the main culprit in a "FL BEAT". This gives us the noob brand. Alot of users (including me) prefer the step sequencer to program drum patterns or percussion. However, most do not know how to humanize their patterns. Swing - This affects the way your notes are hit on the sequencer. It's the sliding bar on the top of the grid. I typically set mine to 9% up to 25%...even more for west coast'ish beats. It's real basic. But it helps alot to get rid of that super quantized FL feel. Graph Editor - As i mentioned before, you can adjust your "velocities" to create humanization on hats and snares and kicks. I don't recommend this for instruments. But if you slide the bar at the bottom of this editor over to "Shift" you can also create delayed hits on certain elements. Like you can slide your snares over...your hats over...a crash over. This helps phase cancelation when layering sounds. And creates a funky groove as well. 9th wonder is known to use this on his productions. Shift is my best friend. Quantize - So let's say you created your drums in the step sequencer, but want the swing of a Sp1200 or MPC or ASR. You can! Google "Mpc groove templates" for fl studio, or any other drum machine..and download the .fsc files. Mis tris offers some. So let's say your hi hats need some swing. After you click it in, right click on the hi-hat channel and "send to piano roll". once that's done, you will see your steps dissapear to a green lane. Double click that, and it will show you your notes..you can manually slide your hats (with snap turned off), add extra hits or layered sounds, and quantize (alt+q). Once in Quantize mode, it will show you a folder where you can select a template..FL has some by default. Experiment. But if you downloaded the MPC ones, just browse to em (i.e. MPC swing 70%) and click on..then adjust the "Start Time" and "sensitivity" until you get something you like. There's a tutorial on youtube about it. And a few google articles! SEARCH is your best friend. 5) EQ. This deserves it's own thread. But EQ kills alot of us FL users. We got our heavy kicks and bass lines interfering. Our master mix has too much low end, and not enough mid. I mean this really deserves a better person to explain. But i suggest searching around for (Groove 3, Linda, Ask, Groovebox) sponsored Videos on mixing and or mastering. Any video featuring waves plugins or sonnox, will help you get an understanding about EQ and how to use it to improve your mixes. Even youtube waves plugins or sonnox, and listen to the EQ parts. This knowledge can be applied to ALL plugins (generally). I hope this helps you guys. Side Note: Compression hurts more than it helps, stay away from it if you can. Best used to tame inconsistent dynamics in things like vocals. Not so much to get things "louder". See: "Perceived Loudness" via google. You can really damage your dynamics in a mix by compressing too much.