Mixing Tips

Mixing Tips that Will Give You an Amazing Sounding Master



If you are still determined to do the mixing yourself, here are some mix tips that will help give you an amazing sounding master.
These tips are standard in the business, can be found on my site on the FAQ´s page, (along with many more Tips) and on most professional mastering sites as well. Following these simple rules will make my job a lot easier, and will give you maximum results.

  1. Don’t push the level in mixing. Just focus on making the mix sound great. The use of compression on the individual tracks is fine but minimal compression on the mix buss. NO Compression, or Limiter on the Master Output.
  2. Definitely no limiting or mastering plugins on your Mix Buss! It’s only likely to degrade the sound.
  3. Leave 3-6 db of headroom. By this I mean the Master Output channel should be set at 0db, and the db reading of your mix should be -3 to -6db. This leaves the headroom that’s needed for mastering. Pushing the level to 0 db will only augment ugly distortion Mastering.
  4.  Don’t Normalize your tracks, as this only degrades the quality of audio.
  5. Try and record at the highest level bit rate (24 bit 48 khz, or 24 bit 96,if you´re processor will handle it). It’s not critical if you haven’t done this, it just helps. If you´re recorded at 16 bit 44.1, it´s ok, but you won´t get quite the same quality. The higher the bit and sample rate, the more dynamics your music will have.
  6. NO DITHERING ! This is left to the mastering engineer.
  7.  Clean up your tracks. It’s a lot harder for me to get rid of the guitar player clicking on his EFX pedals before he hits a chord, or a singer clearing his throat, once the song has been mixed. Solo all live audio tracks and take a listen to whats there before you start to mix.
  8. Send songs as Audio Data files (.WAV or .AIFF). NOT MP3 files! Just compare file sizes between the different file formats and you will see that mp3 are only 1/10th the amount of data.
  9. When mixing, keep in mind that reverb levels will probably be enhanced a little with mastering, so often times holding back a little with the reverb during mixing, yields nicer results.

Books & Tutoirials to help you;

Here´s a pretty good book with some valuable information in it;

“Modern Recording Techniques, Sixth Edition” page
Modern Recording Techniques, Sixth Edition (Paperback)
by David Miles Huber, Robert E. Runstein
4.3 out of 5 stars (31) $26.73

There are also many good video tutorials for whatever recording program you might be using.
www.macProVideo.com is a great one for Pro Tools, Logic Pro, and many others.