Mixing mastering & loudness

Discussion in 'Production' started by Busdriver, Aug 1, 2012.

  1. Busdriver

    Busdriver Member

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    Hey guys,

    I'm currently finishing a track (for once) and i'm a bit bothered by some questions.

    At what stage do you achieve optimal loudness?
    Mixing or mastering?
    Do you limit your mixing master?

    I'm quite tired of mixing an remixing trying to get some loudness and when i master, compression and limiting usually mess my track up, puting my snare on the background or bringing up random frequencies.

    Hope you have some good advice on that!

    Peace
     
  2. dirty breaks

    dirty breaks Guest

    mastering.


    no.


    don't master your own tunes, get someone with years of experience to do it for you.


    don't aim for loudness before mastering
     
  3. ThePapa

    ThePapa Suffragette City..

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    How's life under the socialists mon ami? I hear your new president is already having mistress problems?
     
  4. Busdriver

    Busdriver Member

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    Thx guys.
    You seems to have some knowledge on the question Dirty ;).
    I'd like to get my tunes mastered by a pro, but that cost some money and i'd like to be sure that my tracks worth it and that i don't fck up my mix before.

    Hey Papa, bah, politics..... dont heard about any mistress tho, more about his ex-wife.
     
  5. Busdriver

    Busdriver Member

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    In fact i find the volume matter to be very relative and it troubles me. if you mix everything quiet you can fit whatever you want.... How to hear if your mix is ok? How to know if it's mixed properly? (besides muddyness etc...)
     
  6. lostnthesound

    lostnthesound Burns Easily in the Sun

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    There's a couple ways to gauge your mix:
    1. Bounce your track and listen to it on many different audio systems. If it all the elements are sounding proper on every system, you're on the right track (no pun intended).
    2. Build a DIY mastering chain so that you can get a general idea of what elements in the mix need some work (maybe the snare is dominating the mix, or perhaps some pads need some panning, etc.)
    3. Don't listen to the track for a couple days, then go back with fresh ears and have a go.

    Having your track mastered by pros isn't all that expensive, usually between $50 & $75 (USD) per track, with price breaks for the more tracks you have mastered at once. The biggest benefit is hearing the end result as well as getting some words of wisdom from your mastering engineer. They're usually open to offering advice to improve the mix.

    Cheers.
     
  7. equilibrium

    equilibrium Member

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    yeah dont limit your master if you're sending it out to be professionally mastered

    squashes the dynamics

    http://www.masterpiecelondon.com/ use these guys if yu want
     
  8. Busdriver

    Busdriver Member

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    Thanks again folks!

    @Equilibrium: your mastering studio seems to be top notch. No price and not much information about how to make them master your work tho (i mean on their site).
    Probably way out of my league. I'm just a bad lil producer for now. =D

    I'll upload one of my tracks soon so you all can tell me if my work is mastering worthy or not.

    Peace!
     
  9. elmaruk

    elmaruk slannndaaaaaaar

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    bit of a grey area really mate, you don't wanna go over the top when you master or you will just kill your tune. theres lots of skill in making tracks louder thru percieved loudness rather than actuall loudness.
     
  10. Busdriver

    Busdriver Member

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  11. Saint

    Saint Buried Audio

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    Despite what everyone seems to say over and over again on forums, i actually don't know anyone who doesn't compress/limit/in some way master their tracks when they are finished. They will most likely reverse all that, do some re-mixing, clean up a tune if it gets signed and mastered elsewhere, however as something to play out / send to people it pretty much always has something on the master channel.
     
  12. DJWhizzkidd

    DJWhizzkidd Member

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    Without wanting to sound harsh, having listened to that track, I don't think you need to be worrying about mastering just yet.

    Seems to be a huge misconception out there that mastering will magically make a poor tune sound amazing. All it really does is squeeze a few DBs extra out of it and maybe a little bit of EQ.

    Focus more on the mixdown, things like EQ, compression, levels, panning. Those will make your tune sound better.

    So your song should sound great before you think about mastering. That's just the final polish.
     
  13. Busdriver

    Busdriver Member

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    @Saint: yes i agree.
    @DjWhizz: Boom right in the kisser. That's honest at least.
    I dont think mastering will magically turn my turds into awesome tracks. I'm just curious about how much it will improve it and if i should worry about loudness before it.
    If you can criticize the track itself and maybe the mixdown, give some advice, it would be much apreciated.
     
  14. DJWhizzkidd

    DJWhizzkidd Member

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    Mastering won't improve a track at all, it will just make it a bit louder, maybe sound a little bit smoother. It's a very subtle process.

    Im not good enough at producing to tell you how to improve your tracks, I wish I was. Im just very honest and I see a lot of people wasting time worrying about things that they don't need to.

    My advice would be just keep making tunes, get them sounding good at the mixdown stage then just whack a maximiser on your master channel to boost the volume. Boost as much as you can before it starts sounding bad. At least then you can play them out and they will be OK volume wise.
     
  15. Busdriver

    Busdriver Member

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    Thx for honesty, it worth a lot.
    In fact, making this thing clear about mixing/mastering is a way for me to clear my mind from those problems and to keep focusing on the importants things. For now i'm worried about too much differents things to work efficiently.
    That's why i asked this question.
     
  16. DJWhizzkidd

    DJWhizzkidd Member

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    It's an old cliche, but just have fun and don't stress yourself out thinking "am I making the loudest tune in the whole world".

    Just do what you enjoy doing.

    Focus on using good sounds. If you only use good sounds, then it follows logically that you will have a good track.
     
  17. RUSSLA

    RUSSLA DNBF Monarch

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    If only this was true! Far from it unfortunately :(
     
  18. elmaruk

    elmaruk slannndaaaaaaar

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    i'd say this was rather true
     
  19. Busdriver

    Busdriver Member

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    More complex than that IMO.
    Depends a lot on what style you produce.
    When you produce minimal or house or whatever with not much tracks in it, you need good sounds on their own and decent mixing skills.
    When it comes to tracks with a shitload of sounds and full drums etc... Having good sounds is clearly not enough.
    IMO producers like Phace or Noisia are among the best sound engineers out there because what they do require insane mixing skills and music analysis.
     
  20. equilibrium

    equilibrium Member

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    [video=youtube_share;7WigF9IDdcQ]http://youtu.be/7WigF9IDdcQ?hd=1[/video]