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S1gns Of L1fe - Mixing Tutorial: Part 1 - Setting up a Submix

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  • S1gns Of L1fe - Mixing Tutorial: Part 1 - Setting up a Submix

    Putting the cart before the horse a little bit, as this brand new track isn't even released yet, but I was too excited not to share part 1 of the mixing tutorial with you. :listening:

    This video explains how to setup a "submix" auxiliary track. This step, which I learned by watching another tutorial, has been essential to my mixing process. If you need extra headroom in your mix before you master, this will definitely do the trick.

    In part 2 we will explore adding reverbs and some final EQ's before we get to mastering. We'll also go into properly balancing your mixes and how to get the best sound out of your mix. While I produce ambient music, these mixing techniques could be applied to any type of music.

    Cheers and enjoy,

    -S1gns

    Edit: I've temporarily taken this video down from YouTube as I'm in the process of migrating YouTube channels.
    Last edited by S1gnsOfL1fe; 02-17-2016, 10:49 AM.
    Synphaera Records
    Space | Time | Matter

  • #2
    Wow!! Signs of life mixing tutorials. This is gonna be great! Thanks!
    http://silentfrill.bandcamp.com/

    https://manducator.bandcamp.com/

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks for that, S1gns..really nice job on the tutorial..both interesting and informative. :thumbsup:

      One quick question, if you don't mind..Do you "double up" tracks when mixing, to help expand the sound stage, as well as applying this technique outlined above? I ask as I can't really tell from the waveforms in your mix? I use MuTool's Mulab DAW and the waveforms always appear as single line entries in that for all tracks, unlike yours above, which reminds me of how things look in Audacity.

      Thanks again for sharing your knowledge..much appreciated.

      Dan (Ambient Mechanics)

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks for sharing this video. Could you please elaborate on why turning down the fader on a submix is different than just turning down the fader on the master track? Also, if the submix inputs are clipping, I would think reducing the gain would still leave the clipping artifacts in the signal sent to the master outputs, just at a lower level. Thanks again for sharing your techniques so others (like me) can learn from them.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Ciberithm View Post
          Thanks for sharing this video. Could you please elaborate on why turning down the fader on a submix is different than just turning down the fader on the master track? Also, if the submix inputs are clipping, I would think reducing the gain would still leave the clipping artifacts in the signal sent to the master outputs, just at a lower level. Thanks again for sharing your techniques so others (like me) can learn from them.
          Excellent response. I actually found the original tutorial video where I learned this method...the volume's a bit low, and it's 15 minutes long, but maybe the answer is buried in there somewhere? Check it out!



          Cheers,

          -S1gns
          Synphaera Records
          Space | Time | Matter

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Ambient Mechanics View Post
            Thanks for that, S1gns..really nice job on the tutorial..both interesting and informative. :thumbsup:

            One quick question, if you don't mind..Do you "double up" tracks when mixing, to help expand the sound stage, as well as applying this technique outlined above? I ask as I can't really tell from the waveforms in your mix? I use MuTool's Mulab DAW and the waveforms always appear as single line entries in that for all tracks, unlike yours above, which reminds me of how things look in Audacity.

            Thanks again for sharing your knowledge..much appreciated.

            Dan (Ambient Mechanics)
            Hi Dan,

            No I don't double up, but that's a great idea! If I need a bigger stage I pan things or perhaps even use a widening compression preset, but you're right, I could duplicate the tracks and pan either one to create more space.

            That's the magic of making these tutorials...we can all participate and share ideas!

            Cheers,

            -S1gns
            Synphaera Records
            Space | Time | Matter

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by S1gnsOfL1fe View Post
              Originally posted by Ambient Mechanics View Post
              Thanks for that, S1gns..really nice job on the tutorial..both interesting and informative. :thumbsup:

              One quick question, if you don't mind..Do you "double up" tracks when mixing, to help expand the sound stage, as well as applying this technique outlined above? I ask as I can't really tell from the waveforms in your mix? I use MuTool's Mulab DAW and the waveforms always appear as single line entries in that for all tracks, unlike yours above, which reminds me of how things look in Audacity.

              Thanks again for sharing your knowledge..much appreciated.

              Dan (Ambient Mechanics)
              Hi Dan,

              No I don't double up, but that's a great idea! If I need a bigger stage I pan things or perhaps even use a widening compression preset, but you're right, I could duplicate the tracks and pan either one to create more space.

              That's the magic of making these tutorials...we can all participate and share ideas!

              Cheers,

              -S1gns

              Yeah..the more time I spend producing, the more and more I am becoming aware in a very real way that there are sometimes more than one way to do the same thing. I guess it all depends on the individual's workflow/process and finding something that fits how you do things.

              Mind you, you've got me thinking now..what difference would it make applying both doubling and the your sub mix trick to the same track? That's something I must try out.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by S1gnsOfL1fe View Post
                Originally posted by Ciberithm View Post
                Thanks for sharing this video. Could you please elaborate on why turning down the fader on a submix is different than just turning down the fader on the master track? Also, if the submix inputs are clipping, I would think reducing the gain would still leave the clipping artifacts in the signal sent to the master outputs, just at a lower level. Thanks again for sharing your techniques so others (like me) can learn from them.
                Excellent response. I actually found the original tutorial video where I learned this method...the volume's a bit low, and it's 15 minutes long, but maybe the answer is buried in there somewhere? Check it out!


                Cheers,

                -S1gns
                I checked out the video, and he does address clipping. According to his tutorial, you should NOT clip in the submix bus. He states if the master is clipping, turn down the submix gain, but if the submix is clipping, then turn down signals from individual tracks. Regarding why to use a submix at all, my guess is that many (if not all) DAWS export the audio mixdown pre-fader. I'll have to look into this more later to get a definitive answer.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re the U-He EQ "Clear" - you mention that you are clearing some of the mids, but also mention that it raises the highs ---- just curious, can you tell a bit about what frequencies it cuts &/or boosts?
                  HP Z420, Intel Xenon [email protected] 3600MHz, 8GB RAM,
                  Windows 7 Pro 64-bit, Soundcard : MOTU Ultralite Mk-3, & Sonar : Producer X2
                  https://soundcloud.com/ambientindigo
                  http://www.ambientmusicconference.com

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Ambient Indigo View Post
                    Re the U-He EQ "Clear" - you mention that you are clearing some of the mids, but also mention that it raises the highs ---- just curious, can you tell a bit about what frequencies it cuts &/or boosts?
                    So here is the "clear" preset straight from the plugin itself:



                    As you can see, it has a high shelf that's boosted, a wide bell in the middle that's significantly tapered off, and a low end that's boosted with an actual cutoff around 48hz. What this would "actually" look like on a graphical EQ scale I'm sure only the team at U-he knows but with some imagination you can get a pretty "clear" picture. No pun intended, of course! :razz:

                    Cheers Indigo!
                    Synphaera Records
                    Space | Time | Matter

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Interesting. I was thinking to try and apply it to my graphical EQ (I use Alloy2). But, as you said, its not so easy ... I'm adding a high pass on a pad normally around 120Hz (unless it has a lot of bass that is needed), and when layering scooping out mids at around 400. I'll experiment a bit now with adding a high shelf - looks like its at around 2500 Hz in your above example, as a rough estimate ...?
                      HP Z420, Intel Xenon [email protected] 3600MHz, 8GB RAM,
                      Windows 7 Pro 64-bit, Soundcard : MOTU Ultralite Mk-3, & Sonar : Producer X2
                      https://soundcloud.com/ambientindigo
                      http://www.ambientmusicconference.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Ambient Indigo View Post
                        Interesting. I was thinking to try and apply it to my graphical EQ (I use Alloy2). But, as you said, its not so easy ... I'm adding a high pass on a pad normally around 120Hz (unless it has a lot of bass that is needed), and when layering scooping out mids at around 400. I'll experiment a bit now with adding a high shelf - looks like its at around 2500 Hz in your above example, as a rough estimate ...?
                        That sounds about right! Again, really glad you got something out of this.

                        Cheers!
                        Synphaera Records
                        Space | Time | Matter

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          The Uhbik-Q Clear preset sets the high-shelf at 7.2. The high-shelf is a boost. The screenshots below should help you see what the preset is doing.

                          This is a screen shot of white noise without EQ.
                          Screen Shot 2013-06-01 at 8.07.16 PM.png

                          This is after inserting Uhbik-Q with the clear preset:
                          Screen Shot 2013-06-01 at 8.06.59 PM.png
                          Last edited by Ciberithm; 06-02-2013, 07:25 AM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Ciberithm View Post
                            The Uhbik-Q Clear preset sets the high-shelf at 7.2. The high-shelf is a boost. The screenshots below should help you see what the preset is doing.

                            This is a screen shot of white noise without EQ.
                            [ATTACH=CONFIG]211[/ATTACH]

                            This is after inserting Uhbik-Q with the clear preset:
                            [ATTACH=CONFIG]212[/ATTACH]

                            A graphical illustration!! Using Fabfilter plugins! I couldn't have done it better myself. Fantastic my friend and thank you for taking the time to create this for us. Isn't it interesting what "clear" does? This is the kind of graphic that is useful when evaluating any EQ but when dealing with the higher spectrum, it's important to know just how high it actually goes.

                            Cheers!
                            Synphaera Records
                            Space | Time | Matter

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              In the Uhbiks, if you click on the "dial" the actual numerical setting for whatever control you click on will appear in the readout at the top. So, in the graphic above it says the preset name, but if you were to click on any button you would see the name of the parameter on the left and then the numerical setting on the right. You probably already knew that, so apologies for stating the obvious!

                              For the "Clear" preset that you're showing the factory parameters are:

                              Gain = 2.50
                              Bottom = 6.00

                              Band 1 Frequency = 2.50
                              Band 1 Gain = -7.00

                              Band 2 Frequency = 7.20
                              Band 2 Gain = 10.00


                              Which may or may not help!
                              Last edited by Nemo; 06-07-2013, 12:20 AM.
                              My Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/sequent7

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