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Mixing virgin - hard rock
Old 10th February 2009
  #1
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Mixing virgin - hard rock

OK...My band recorded 14 tracks in my basement on Cubase. We are starting with one track to do some mixing to get a general mix to be copied to the rest of the songs. We started with the attached song which had the least number of tracks (20) and they all exist on the other songs, so we should be able to copy these mixer settings to the other songs for a good start on them.

Looking for advice on our first pass. This is my first time ever mixing so any advice criticism whatever is appreciated. 12 tracks were the drums, 2 tracks to one rhythm guitar using different mics and placement to be mixed (5150 4X14), ditto to the other guitarist's rhythm guitar (Engl Powerball), same for lead guitar (Engl Powerball), bass, and vocals. This mix excludes vocals at this time.

Only some individual track EQs, compression, gating have been done, nothing on the main output.

Ideas or whatever to help us make this sound good.

Thanks.


[ATTACH]Old Mudd[/ATTACH]
Attached Files

01 Track 1.mp3 (4.71 MB, 205 views)

Old 11th February 2009
  #2
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
ahhh...all these looks and no feedback? I was so anxious to get home and long in :(
Old 11th February 2009 | Show parent
  #3
Gear Nut
 
Bobbaganouche's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
first off... kudos on a very respectful first ever mix. i've heard worse product from supposed "engineers" before.

just a couple ramblings since no one else was feeding your hunger... keep in mind these are just opinions.

* the lead guitar could use a bit more presence in the mix than it currently has.

* the snare seems it could use some air. possibly some bite too depending on your preferences.

* consider some eq on the toms. they have a boxy/dead character about them.

* i am interested to see what kind of vocal work will be added to this.

* nice work on the overall drum mix. the cymbals sit in quite well.

* one more thing. i noticed the rhythm guitar is very right side heavy. consider going stereo with it for some additional space.
Old 11th February 2009 | Show parent
  #4
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Right ON, thanks for the feedback!

There are actually 2 different rhythm guitars, one panned middish right one middish left. My guitar, right, does have a bit more mid range in it so it probably does stand out a bit more. Ya think raise up the left guitar a bit or Eq a bit different. Found it tricky to keep the guitars sounding different, but equal, if that makes sense. We did realize after we got tired of recording and decided we were done that the other guitarist didn't play the rhythm part during the solo, mostly cause he didn't know it since live he does his solo. I thought about just taking one of the tracks of mine and dupping it to the left.

I will play with some of your other suggestions too and repost. We did our first pass at adding in the vocal track tonight, gonna check it tomorrow and see if we still like it, our ears got tired.

One additional question. We have 14 tracks, while playing with this one toward the end tonight we threw on a multiband compressor, maximizer and EQ'd a little on the output buss. As I understand, this stuff should wait until after the mix has been mixed down and then the settings applied to all of the tracks during mastering. Bit it is hard to resist how much bigger it made it sound. We plan on sending it to Diskfaktory to master and get copies. Do you guys apply any amount of these types of things to the individual song's output prior to mix down? Or do you save all of that for mastering?
Old 12th February 2009 | Show parent
  #5
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Here is the updated version with first pass at mixing in vocals. Some minor tweaks to guitars and little to the bass, but music is samish compared to previous track. Have not done the suggestions above yet. Stay tuned...I think we can get through this together
Attached Files

OldMuddVox1.mp3 (4.71 MB, 134 views)

Old 13th February 2009 | Show parent
  #6
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Help please?
Old 14th February 2009 | Show parent
  #7
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
ahh come on guys, isn't it just easier to listen to music on itune if you aren't gonna talk about it? Free CDs to anyone who gives advice.
Old 14th February 2009 | Show parent
  #8
Deleted User
Guest
Stereo image needs to be widened a lot. Double tracked guitars panned hard left and right. Base rhythm guitar hard left and right (2 takes) and the lead rhythm panned in a bit. That will take care of having the 2 guitars sound different, but still huge.

Kick drum is too dynamic for this genre of music. Try sample replacement. Everyone does it, it's not cheating, it's just the sound. Try to get a sample thats got a bit more bottom end on it, and a little bit more clicky maybe?

Snare needs to crack a little more. Add some 5k.

Vocals might be sitting on top a bit too much... Try to get them to sit a little bit better. You might want to try to add a bit of upper mids (4-5k or so?) Turn down the volume, maybe up the compression a bit. You might want to think about adding some vocal doubles or harmonies in places as well... Make it interesting! Effects? Some parts either need to be re-tracked or tuned while you're at it.

The bottom end of the mix isn't as strong as I personally would like to see. Not very good friends with your bass player?

If this is seriously your first attempt at a mix, I'm impressed. Keep it up.
Old 14th February 2009 | Show parent
  #9
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Now thats what I am talking about...Thankyou!

You touched on a few points we were thinking too and we will definatey try them. This song was our simplest of all as for one it only had the one vocal track. We did alot more layering on the others and this song feels a bit boring in some ways compared to the others. (funny to think that out of the 14 songs we did, this one would be the closest to cut from the CD in my opinion, yet here i display it for all to hear.)

You are right, it needs some color around the chorus areas to help bring it to life. Plus we like that we could hear him, but felt like he wasn't setting in the mix. So we will try what you said move him in.

Stay tuned....in the meantime...anyone else? Thumper, when you mix is part of the mix including EQ, compression, maximer on the output bus? I noticed when I kicked that EQ on I was albe to find the song's lower end and bring our bassist out a bit more. But I thought i am supposed to leave that for mastering and should try to get that feel with individual track EQs etc. Our bassist is trick, trying to find his clicky sound without making it sound farty, but still keep the roll as "bass".
Old 14th February 2009 | Show parent
  #10
Deleted User
Guest
The way I feel about the mix bus:

Do everything to make it sound better. Don't do anything to make it louder.

I always mix through a bus compressor. I came up with standard settings for the comp depending on the type of track. The first thing I do is setup the bus comp and then mix through it.

It needs to be noted that I AM NOT using the compressor to make anything louder, I just like the sound of mixing through the comp. Usually the comp is sitting right at about 4db of reduction I think... don't really pay attention to it.

As far as eqs...

Plugins for fixing, channel strips/external eq for tone on a per channel/submix bus. Then halfway through the mix I'll strap a eq on the main bus if everything wants a little more air or if the mids seem a little thick or the bottom needs some balls.

When you're halfway through the mix, you should have a great sounding base to start the fine tweaking. You shouldn't NEED an eq on the main bus, but it's perfectly ok to want it.

Mastering seems to be thought of as black magic lately. While mastering is a very important part of the process, it rarely takes a ****e sounding mix and makes it awesome.

Mastering in my book should be used to make all the tracks destined for the record have similar timbre and volume... And of course everyone's favorite; limiting the snot out of it to make it compete with everything else on the market.

Keep me posted as to how things turn out.

Oh... And you really should track some more vocals for this song. Why not? In my book production is waaay more important than sound quality. A cool song is a cool song, ya know?
Old 14th February 2009 | Show parent
  #11
Deleted User
Guest
One more thing.

About the bass guitar being tricky... It doesn't have to be.

First off, if you try this make sure that you don't have any phase or time based issues and it should work great.

Try recording a DI directly off of the guitar itself, and then the DI on the amp head, and then mic the bass cab.

Use the mic to get the tone that he's looking for and the DI off of the head to get some definition. Once he's happy with the sound, kick his ass out of the room and use the bass DI to fill in everything else that you need... like pant shaking low end.

Get him back in the room and let him marvel at how godly his bass sounds. Don't tell him that you changed anything.
Old 14th February 2009 | Show parent
  #12
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
Compress the vocals more for sure.

Also it sounds like he is at the end of his range, so autotune maybe? also the vocals seem to have a bit of digital clipping on the chorus.

I don't think the bass is too quiet, it just sounds a little wonky, eq maybe.

Pretty good other than that.
Old 14th February 2009 | Show parent
  #13
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Thanks again guys. I hope to get to this either today or tomorrow so I will have another post soon.
Old 18th February 2009 | Show parent
  #14
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
OK here we go again. Did another pass. Please let me know what you think. I don't want to say what we did to this mix compared to the previous version and influence your ears, so listen and let me know what you like and do not. I have my opinions but want to wait for yours to share mine.
Attached Files

02 Track 2.mp3 (4.66 MB, 146 views)

Old 19th February 2009 | Show parent
  #15
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
I am entering everyone's name in a hat that has provided feedback and will draw and name to receive a copy of our CD when done. To ensure you are entered please critique and provide advice for a new studio guy.

(Yes I have resorted to bribery. And yes, although our CD may not be the best prize in the world, you can at least listen to it, find that EQ frequency you suggested should be cut and say "that was all me!"
Old 20th February 2009 | Show parent
  #16
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Please don't bury me. I need your help.
Old 20th February 2009 | Show parent
  #17
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
hello my friend,

i'm from indonesia..and just want to give u a little input... I think the problem is from the recording stage. Sorry to say, i hate the toms.... But i do love the vocal. I don't hear the Killing Drum Sound..

And about the guitar...I think i'm going to quote Mr Stavrou's statement...Dont put Mic where u want to see it... The art of miking is to put far enough to chase THE FLAME...and i'm completely sure the sound will glue enough without much processing..

Sorry about my bad english... or u can visit Mixing with your Mind
I've bought that DAMN BOOK !!! and wish that i have it million years ago

Thanks
Old 20th February 2009 | Show parent
  #18
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
I think one of our problems with the toms and this relates to what you were saying, is that we miked everything and have bleed thru from other drums, so we have been trying to EQ out the other drums so we can manage the individual tracks. For example, the hi hat 1 mic, basically sounds like it got the whole kit. It was aimed in to the hit hat and but went right across the snare and toms. I am half tempted to pull that all the way out and see if that changes the tom sound and let the overheads pull out the hi hat.

We did find the EQ presets in Cubase for different settings, that was handy, wish i knew about those earlier

Does anyone think the vocals are too quiet? One guy in our band thinks they might be and so does his mom (I will let you guess which one it is

I will pick up that book.
Old 21st February 2009 | Show parent
  #19
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
well, after i try Stavrou's method, i realise that when i record the drum with many mics, all the mics are "ONE BIG COMPONENT"..so, based on his book, first try to get the drum position in the room 1st. After that, find the OH 1 ( floor ), find the position until u find the most vibe ( booom ) from the floor. After OH 1, find the 2nd OH. Make an equal distance from snare to 1st OH..and snare to 2nd OH.

The key is in OH placement. Trust me ! I'll give u an example the drum sound i recorded with very cheap Mic..but the result is Big Illusion..

For close mic, try to find the most vibration from the kit.. Feel it using your hair on the hand. Just like that...

So, if you put all mic in right position...u dont have to make any surgery EQ. U can get advantage from the bleed ( it will be the ambience..not bleed anymore ).

NR Drum Trailer 2-01.mp3
No EQ...
OH = MXL
All toms = Audix
Snare = SM57
No Hihat Mic
Kick = i've forgot the mic

Thanks
Old 26th February 2009 | Show parent
  #20
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Here we are, feeling better about the new mix here. Changed up a few things. I also threw on a master compressor and EQ preset on the output buss on the "master" version. BUt I put both on for your review. WE do not plan on mstering it ourselves, but wanted to get and idea where it was headed. How is this one feeling for you guys, better than the previous?
Attached Files

01 OldMuddMix.mp3 (4.71 MB, 68 views)

02 OldMuddMaster.mp3 (4.66 MB, 91 views)

Old 26th February 2009 | Show parent
  #21
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
This is the best mix ever

Hopefully the title spurs interest to listen and critique...but I do think we are almost there. Just wonder about the vocal level...too low volumewise, just right, or does it need eg moved just a bit to cut but leave level same, or will mastering bring it out. Usually mastering seems to bring out some highs, so don't want to add too much.
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