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  • Mix a pop song – 9 – Track Sharing

    Finally, if certain tracks have more than one instrument part on them (“track-sharing” is a common practice if the number of tracks you have is limited), then it is extremely likely that the different parts will need different levels, EQ, and effects on them (although if you’ve read my article on setting recording levels, you […]

  • Mix a pop song – 8 – Equalisation and Processing The Main Parts

    As a summary of the above, and using the above-mentioned techniques, I’ll describe how you apply them to each track, along with other techniques such as compression. Firstly, for each instrument, see whether you need to do any “safety” EQ. By safety EQ I mean rolling off either or both of the top and bottom […]

  • Mix a pop song – 7g – Auto Mix Levelling

    Every mix engineer is familiar with the problem of individual parts of a mix suddenly “leaping out” on certain notes and “taking over” a mix. Modern mixing consoles provide automation to cope with this. But is this really the solution? If you’ve had much experience of this at all, then you will recognise that it […]

  • Mix a pop song – 7f – Creating Mix Room

    This is really something that came out of the “Tamla Motown” mixing scene, when people first realised that EQ was just as much a creative tool as a technical one. I’m not a big fan of this, even though I know that other people use it a lot. The idea behind “creating mix room” is […]

  • Mix a pop song – 7e – Distance Placement

    When it comes to distance placement (and the other two subtle effects in this article – creating mix room, and auto mix levelling) we are now getting into the realm of subtle equalisation that is rarely documented – but yet frequently used – by sound engineers. You may have tried to create positioning and distance […]

  • Mix a pop song – 7d – Bong, Boff, and Sizzle

    I’m so sorry – I couldn’t find a better title for this section – which is a great shame because it is actually critically important, so I’d better explain myself pretty quickly. I should point out that the previous section regarding “sound enhancement” by EQ, is really discussing the subject from the point of view […]

  • Mix a pop song – 7c – Sound Enhancement

    EQ can also be used to ‘boost’ or ‘cut’ certain frequencies to enhance the sound. Most musical instrument sounds can be described as containing the following (in order): * Sub harmonics (low bass components) * Fundamental note range * Upper harmonics * High harmonics When using EQ for general “enhancement” of the sound, you are […]

  • Mix a pop song – 7b – Harmonic Dampening

    The characteristic sound of a snare drum going “doink” is enough to make any engineer feel queasy and go green. It is probably the most often encountered problem when recording or mixing a real drum kit. The real solution of course, is to make sure that you have a drum kit that doesn’t go “doink!” […]

  • Mix a pop song – 7a – Noise Reduction Using EQ

    The act of eliminating unwanted noise from a signal, is obviously one application where it is far better to get the sound right at source. Although this article is about mixing, it is worth mentioning here what the problems are, and how they are normally solved at the recording stage. The elimination of rumbles is […]

  • Mix a pop song – 7 – Adding the Main Parts

    Probably the first thing we need to get out of the way right now, is a more detailed examination of the role of EQ in mixing. The Use of Equalisation Equalisation – or EQ, to give it its common acronym – is fundamental to modern recording and mixing. However, its application is still very much […]