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Old 11-08-2006, 05:22 PM
GeneralChaos GeneralChaos is offline
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Default Need help getting started with mixing

After having to take a break from PT while I finished my last semester in college, I am ready to dive in headfirst again. Up until this point I have become more familiar with recording techniques and navigation within ProTools, but I am totally staring up at a daunting wall when it comes to mixing a song down.

I am posting a clip of an instrumental that my old band came up with and hope that somebody out there can give me some good advice Here is a little bit of info about how it was laid out until this point:

- I am using a MBox2 as my recording interface with PT 6.8.1 and only the default plugin set.

- Drums were laid out in Fruity Loops 4 with some random samples that I had laying about. Sounds pretty robotic, but I live in an apartment so I can't do much with real drums. I am definitely in the market for a good drum machine, or software plugin, since I always hear precussion parts in my head but have no drumming skill myself.

- Recorded a Strat through a Line6 amp. Used a Rode NT1-A and NT5 at the same time to 2 tracks.

- Bass was recorded straight out of my GallienKrueger 400RB-III and sounds pretty much like a fart. I was getting pretty burned out by this point and will probably go back and rerecord this later.

- I did some minor mixing to make sure everything lines up and sounds relatively well. Then I consolidated any sliced and diced tracks and got rid of all excess waveforms so that I could post the session online.

Currently, I am a little disappointed in the guitar sound when both the cymbal and kick drum pick up. I am unsure if EQ'ing or Compression will take care of the problem...which is the purpose of the post. Additionally, I am interested in any resources that anyone might have pertaining to learning good production techniques. I feel as if the learning curve has been fairly straightforward up until this point but now I am drowning in all of the options and don't know where to start.

Here is the link to the PT Session file.
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  #2  
Old 11-09-2006, 02:14 AM
Ryan Young's Avatar
Ryan Young Ryan Young is offline
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Default Re: Need help getting started with mixing

I'm downloading the session now. I'll play with it a bit and can email you my session file. (I love posts like this, I've done it a couple of times myself)
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Old 11-09-2006, 03:12 AM
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Ryan Young Ryan Young is offline
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Default Re: Need help getting started with mixing

I'm definitely not the "best of the best", but here are some things I could recommend.

1) The kick sample sounded pretty bad to begin with, I'd use a different one.
2) You might want to get new strings on your bass and just plug directly into the MBox. It sounded pretty dead.
3) Guitars were just a little bit muddy, but pretty good. Whenever I'm doubling guitars, I track it twice, I use a different guitar (if possible) and different distortion setting. This eliminates the "centered-chorus" sound, when you're trying to get a wider/fatter sound.

From what I did, compression wouldn't really do much other than squash the sound on the drums, since they're samples: EQ helped though. Check out the session that I uploaded for you and you'll see exactly what I did. Hope this was of some help to you. Keep on rockin! You're on the right path. To use my session files, unzip my files and drag them into your session folder, it should relink the audio files to your audio files.

Here is the link to download the .ptf (Pro Tools 7 file session file)

and

Here is the link to download the .pts (Pro Tools 5.1-6.9 file session file)

and

Here is the link to hear an mp3 of my mix.


P.S. I just realized that the .pts is still the same name as your file. Rename my file(s) maybe as "Ryan's Mix" or something after they're unzipped, then drag them into your session folder. You should have no problems then. Goodnight...
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-Ryan Young

•Pro Tools 12.6 (x2)
•OSX 10.11 & 10.12
•Mac Pro 2 x 2.66 GHz 6-Core Intel Xeon (x2)
•16 GB 1333 MHz DDR3 (x2)
•HD Native PCIe (x2)
•HD Omni (x2)
•192 i/o
•96 i/o
•4 Seagate Barracuda 1.5TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
•Blackmagic Intensity Pro (HDMI)
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  #4  
Old 11-09-2006, 02:41 PM
GeneralChaos GeneralChaos is offline
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Default Re: Need help getting started with mixing

Ryan,

Thanks so much. I just listened to your mix and it was pretty much what I was going for right from the beginning. You really cleaned up the guitar vs. drums which is what I was completely unsure how to do. I will be studying your mix to see what you did, and how each action affected the total mix.

I am curious to know the one (or couple of) main things that you did to make the guitar sit better with the drums. Also, if you have any advice as to where to look for ref. materials or guides for any mid-level production techniques I would greatly appreciate it.

Thanks again!
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  #5  
Old 11-09-2006, 07:42 PM
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Ryan Young Ryan Young is offline
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Default Re: Need help getting started with mixing

Thanks man! As far as the "guitar vs. drums" issue, here's what I did. I kind of "assigned" each track's EQ to their own set of frequencies (well, at least enhanced them at those frequencies). Lowest to highest, it went: Kick, Bass, Guitars, Snare, Cymbals. Also, you had everything panned to the center. A simple fix ther was panning the guitars to the side and keeping the kick and snare centered so they'll cut through. I'm still finding tons of great information all over the net. You're already on one of the best sources of information (the DUC). I've learned so much by reading posts on here, and having my posts answered. Here are some more links that you will find useful. Best of luck!

http://duc.digidesign.com

http://www.soundonsound.com

http://www.theprojectstudiohandbook.com/directory.htm

-Ryan
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-Ryan Young

•Pro Tools 12.6 (x2)
•OSX 10.11 & 10.12
•Mac Pro 2 x 2.66 GHz 6-Core Intel Xeon (x2)
•16 GB 1333 MHz DDR3 (x2)
•HD Native PCIe (x2)
•HD Omni (x2)
•192 i/o
•96 i/o
•4 Seagate Barracuda 1.5TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
•Blackmagic Intensity Pro (HDMI)
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  #6  
Old 11-10-2006, 02:05 AM
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JFreak JFreak is online now
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Default Re: Need help getting started with mixing

Quote:
Also, you had everything panned to the center.
Great mix sounds great in mono, too. Having everything in the center forces you to EQ properly and to get a proper balance, which are two most important aspects in a mix. I'd suggest doing that first - always - and only then proceed to more exciting things.

But, yes, it's a quick fix to move offending tracks off-center. That's what we do live all the time. But in studio (when you have the time), it'd be a lot better to get the basics right first. Unless you're in a big hurry
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  #7  
Old 11-10-2006, 04:58 PM
GeneralChaos GeneralChaos is offline
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Default Re: Need help getting started with mixing

Awesome, thanks for all the help...help which will help me refine my skills so much better. Someday I'll be the one answering the questions around here. (Though I would be foolish to think that I will ever be done asking them either)
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