Yes Sirrrr 3: Why can't You just do all your mixing using headphones???

Discussion in 'Audio Producers Discussions' started by Holl@chaBoi, Jan 24, 2006.

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  1. Holl@chaBoi

    Holl@chaBoi New Member

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    There are pros and cons to mixing using headphones, as there are to mixing using monitors, but the bottom line is that one is not a replacement for the other(you really need both).

    Good-quality headphones are useful for revealing some details that even the best speakers gloss over. In particular, I often find that it's much easier to hear edit points in the audio when using headphones — edits that sound perfect on speakers can sometimes be really obvious on headphones!

    On the other hand, stereo imaging and panning information is much harder to judge on headphones, as is equalisation sometimes, and stereo mixes which sound impressive over headphones can sound very wrong on speakers, and vice versa.

    When using headphones, the way our ears receive sound, and hence the way our brains analyse and process it, is drastically different to the way things work when we use loudspeaker monitors. Clearly, when wearing headphones, each ear will only hear the audio carried on the relevant channel, but when listening to a pair of speakers in a room both ears will hear the signals produced by both the left and right loudspeakers. The timing differences associated with this audio "crosstalk" between the two channels and each ear lie at the core of the "stereo illusion". This is what allows us to perceive phantom images between the speakers, and coincident-mic and stereo-panning techniques (which employ only level differences between the two channels to convey the spatial information) rely entirely on this audio crosstalk to work properly.

    When listening to ordinary stereo material via headphones, this interaural timing information is missing — we have only the differences in level between the two channels to go on — and hence the stereo images become non-linear and ill-defined. In fact, most people perceive the individual sound sources to lie on a line running directly through the centre of the head, instead of being portrayed in front of us as they would be with loudspeakers. This radically different presentation is what makes judging stereo signals and panning mono ones so much more difficult on headphones.
    There are ways of introducing interaural timing differences for headphone listeners. The binaural recording technique is one way and HRTF (head-related transfer function) processing is another, but neither really recreates a true stereo image for most people in the same way as listening on speakers can.

    If your room is problematic(by sound) and you have poor monitors, then headphones may well be a better and more reliable approach. It is certainly possible to achieve good results by mixing using headphones alone, although it does take practice and require a good deal of familiarity with the particular headphones you use. But whichever way you look at it, using headphones, it is a lot harder in some respects to achieve the same kind of quality and transferability that comes more naturally on good monitor speakers in a reasonably good acoustically-treated room.
    test
  2. HYPNOTIK

    HYPNOTIK Fully Loaded

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    A skilled producer can mix with head phones and monitors.. it just takes time and exprience.. and you gotta ahve a good ear.
    test
  3. Holl@chaBoi

    Holl@chaBoi New Member

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    It doesn't matter how much "Skill" you have, you mixing depends on your "Ears" and the environment around you.
    test
  4. HYPNOTIK

    HYPNOTIK Fully Loaded

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    well you know what i mean.

    Good post thoguh.. i agree with everything you say
    test
  5. HYPNOTIK

    HYPNOTIK Fully Loaded

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  6. Mellow Madness

    Mellow Madness aKa sTaTiK

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    personally i mix with my dope headphones.. then i tweak everything down with my monitors.. to get it all on point..

    no way i can just use my monitors.. my girl would be tripping.. lol
    test
  7. noVa ProductionZ

    noVa ProductionZ RS7K 4 LIFE!!! MPC BLOWS!

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    cross check with everything,

    theys why i have a hifi, good quality monitors, some bookshelf/monitor speakers, some semi large hifi speakers a shitty pair of headphones and a good pair of headphones.
    test
  8. Arkane Beats

    Arkane Beats www.arkanebeats.com

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    If you want to mix correctly go to a school and learn from professionals

    If you're just mixing to upload onto a soundclick site and plan to track it out for the buyer for a professional to mix down later then worrying about room acoustics and shit is really a waste of time
    test
  9. Holl@chaBoi

    Holl@chaBoi New Member

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    Damn, that's stressful but dedicated.
    Then again, most studio have the same items.
    test
  10. YB MUZiK

    YB MUZiK Active Member

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    damn, is it that hard mixing a track?
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  11. R-Tistic

    R-Tistic Your favorite DJ

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    One thing I notice for some reason is that with my setup, drums usually sound clear through headphones when they might sound very loud when played through regular speakers.
    test
  12. Jaye-R

    Jaye-R Audible

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    Creative I really like what you just said, and I'd like to add it to my producer's resource articles. What you think would that be coo with you?
    test
  13. Mellow Madness

    Mellow Madness aKa sTaTiK

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    regular speakers.. ?? ur not talkin about monitors right?

    and yes regular speakers it'll be amplified with a sub bass and etc.

    also the choice of headphones ur using to mix is very important also..

    u can't just use any random headphones... cop some studio headphones..

    and yes headphones can amplify everything also.. since the signal is going straight into ur ears..
    test
  14. HYPNOTIK

    HYPNOTIK Fully Loaded

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    I just copped the Sennheiser HD-280s.
    test
  15. noVa ProductionZ

    noVa ProductionZ RS7K 4 LIFE!!! MPC BLOWS!

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    yeh hence why i dont mix tracks very often i just cant be arsed! lol
    test
  16. R-Tistic

    R-Tistic Your favorite DJ

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    Regular speakers meaning Computer speakers, car stereo system, home audio system, etc. I definitely use studio quality Headphones, I have the Sony MDR-V700 ones.
    test
  17. Mr. sickVisionz

    Mr. sickVisionz The Gentleman's Producer

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    A skilled producer can mix with head phones and monitors.. it just takes time and exprience.. and you gotta ahve a good ear.- Lingual

    It doesn't matter how much "Skill" you have, you mixing depends on your "Ears" and the environment around you. - Holla

    ... I know you aren't saying that skill is irrelevant, but what point where you trying to make by saying that? Especially in response to what Lingual said.
    test
  18. Mellow Madness

    Mellow Madness aKa sTaTiK

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    if u mix properly on ur monitors.. ur beats will sound nice regardless of what system u have..

    obviously.. if u have a sub.. the bass will be more stronger.. but it still wouldn't distort..

    thats why MONITORS ARE RECOMMENDED FOR MIXING
    test
  19. Holl@chaBoi

    Holl@chaBoi New Member

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    Skill and experience form presets, but your Ear and proper environment will tell you if those presets(mental or physically) are right or wrong.
    Feel me?

    ~Silence
    test
  20. HYPNOTIK

    HYPNOTIK Fully Loaded

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    either you can mix good or you cant.
    test
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