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Zen and the Art of Mixing Advanced mixing techniques

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  #21  
Old March 20th, 2012, 05:32 AM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

the bass could loose some 125ish, or there abouts.


and an uneq'd di track is always a good thing. to hell with the sans amp.
the eq on that thing is nothing but trouble.

possibly run some 250 ish out of the kik. not much mind you.

how much of the kick i'm hearing is room/overheads?
a bit, i'd bet.
like weedy said, flip the polarity. see what happens.
here's pointless fun, mute the overheads/room, then mix the bass with the kick/snare mics.
still, the bass sound is the biggest problem.
clacky like weedy said. lacking definition, sounds like a smiley face eq.
try the bass with the sans amp eq off, and just run 0's on the amp. call it an experiment.
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  #22  
Old March 20th, 2012, 07:19 AM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

I tried flipping both bass drum mics (individually and together) and that just reduced the bass drum sound. I flipped the bottom snare mic and that helped clean things up a bit. I really can't believe that I missed that.

As to the balance of the kit issue. What you heard was the mic mix at unity. I wanted to make sure you were what the mics did. I put the kit in balance and so far it's working much better.

As to the bass sound - what Weedy (and giraffe) wasn't liking was the SM58. It had quite a bit of string noise in it. The ribbon (Cascade Fathead) was a whole lotta smoother and a lot less clanky. The clanks are gone but there seems to be a lot resonance left over and I'm not 100% sure as to what to do about it.

This track is intended to be bass guitar heavy, so it's a bit further up in the mix than where it should be.

Improvement?
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File Type: mp3 Ghost - DnB - Womb 1.mp3 (6.09 MB, 108 views)
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  #23  
Old March 20th, 2012, 04:16 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

that still has all of the same problems to me.

it's a snare drum solo

the bass is thin and lifeless

the bass drum isn't loud enough

the drums sound like all phasey room sound

I want to hear a 'mix' that's NOTHING but one bass drum mic, one close snare mic, and one bass track

that just sounds whooshy in a way that only makes it small, not bigger from being roomy.
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  #24  
Old March 20th, 2012, 04:22 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

It's hard to judge with just the drums and bass, but to me the kick (and the kit as a whole) sounds leaner and less up front than the bass.

Since we've ruled out phase issues (I trust you've checked ALL mics against one another?), my gut reaction would be to lose some of that room mic (I don't particularly care for the sound of the room). The kit will move closer and will be easier to balance with the bass.

You can also put a blanket against the bottom of the front head and adjust it so that the kick has less sustain. This will make the kick sound more punchy.

One last trick, since you have the mic out in the open like that, is to build a "tunnel" around it and thereby reduce the leakage from the other parts of the kit, as well as the amount of kick in the room mic.


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Old March 20th, 2012, 04:45 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

I don't think he has ruled out phase problems.

he's only determined (if it's true) that one 180 degree flip isn't 'better'.

that doesn't mean that the room or other mics aren't canceling major aspects of the bass drum.

from what I hear, it's a very ill defined drum sound.
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  #26  
Old March 20th, 2012, 04:58 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

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Originally Posted by weedywet View Post
from what I hear, it's a very ill defined drum sound.
I agree with what you are saying, and I think the preponderance of bad room sound is a major culprit.

Although I don't agree about the snare being loud. It sounds thin and distant to my ears.


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  #27  
Old March 20th, 2012, 05:51 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

Nobody has mentioned the badly tuned very low dead first rack tom.

That is driving me more nuts than anything.
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  #28  
Old March 20th, 2012, 07:30 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

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Originally Posted by TripsieD View Post
I tried flipping both bass drum mics (individually and together) and that just reduced the bass drum sound. I flipped the bottom snare mic and that helped clean things up a bit. I really can't believe that I missed that.

As to the balance of the kit issue. What you heard was the mic mix at unity. I wanted to make sure you were what the mics did. I put the kit in balance and so far it's working much better.

As to the bass sound - what Weedy (and giraffe) wasn't liking was the SM58. It had quite a bit of string noise in it. The ribbon (Cascade Fathead) was a whole lotta smoother and a lot less clanky. The clanks are gone but there seems to be a lot resonance left over and I'm not 100% sure as to what to do about it.

This track is intended to be bass guitar heavy, so it's a bit further up in the mix than where it should be.

Improvement?
try getting rid of the fathead. i'd be willing to bet that's a lot of the problem with the undefined bottom end of the bass.
figure 8 ribbon + close mic'd bass cab = that sound.
that bass is tubby, hell i'd probably prefer the 58. (yes, i know.... 80hz)

try : bass di, kik, snr.

the sm58 probably isn't the culpret in the clankyness, it's just letting it shine.

i'm assuming based on your response that re-tracking isn't a possibility.
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  #29  
Old March 20th, 2012, 11:21 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

Bass is tubby, yes. Too much low mid/upper bass. Not enough definition. I'd want to hear more "bong", i think. "Bong" and "Growl". Less "wub".
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  #30  
Old March 29th, 2012, 03:26 AM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

As an update:

We re-recorded both the drums and the bass over the weekend.

For the drums, as was suggested, we used a drum tunnel to isolate the bass drum (much wonderment by the band and hilarity ensued with that...a story in and of itself). Turns out the bass drum decided to go all basketball, so we pulled the reso head off, which totally changed the sound that we had to drive for.

I decided to go with the Glyn Johns method since it's really well documented.

For the bass, we had major issues with the bass players GK Goldline 500. It just wasn't getting to where we wanted, so we decided direct was the way to go.

The bass is much better now, probably still needs some work though.

Attached is the newest mix. The balance is much better on this one and it feels much more glued together. There are still some details to work out, but thanks to everyone here, I think we are in better shape than when we started.
Attached Files
File Type: mp3 Ghost - Remix.mp3 (6.49 MB, 120 views)
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  #31  
Old March 29th, 2012, 03:58 AM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

Lots of weird stereo fakeness goin on here still.

If you can't do mono well. maybe something else is wrong.
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  #32  
Old March 29th, 2012, 11:23 AM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

The Kick will disapear when there is too much bass in the other instruments.
Try high passing the other ones (even the bass maybe) and this will make room for the kick.
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  #33  
Old March 29th, 2012, 02:45 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

i think it's much better. though i agree about the effects / trickery on the vocals, which is distracting to me.

i think if you put that mix in a good car stereo you might find that the kik is fuckin HUGE in the like 40-50hz range. you may want to pear that back a bit.

in general though, way better.
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Old March 29th, 2012, 04:16 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

One issue may be that you are using a Mapex Pro M, you are fighting the inherent muddyness of that drum. Also what state are the batter heads in (particularly the kick)? These could be sabotaging you from the start.

I think you may also have too much of the under snare mic in the mix.

The second mix sounds better, but all that autopanning is a bit much IMHO.

I think the drum performance on mix 2 was better also, I'm sure that made your job easier come mix time.
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  #35  
Old March 30th, 2012, 04:31 AM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

Better. I'm still not hearing much beater on the kick. Not that I'm NOT a fan of the sort of clackety kicks a lot of guys (esp "metal") like these days, but I do like to hear some beater - it gives the kick presence and helps it translate on smaller speakers. You might try just a touch of distortion? Or different mic placement? Or both? There's a lot of fatness there, but fat alone doesn't make a balanced meal. What kind of kick mic are you using?
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  #36  
Old March 30th, 2012, 07:46 AM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

Quote:
Originally Posted by TripsieD View Post
As an update:

We re-recorded both the drums and the bass over the weekend.

For the drums, as was suggested, we used a drum tunnel to isolate the bass drum (much wonderment by the band and hilarity ensued with that...a story in and of itself). Turns out the bass drum decided to go all basketball, so we pulled the reso head off, which totally changed the sound that we had to drive for.

I decided to go with the Glyn Johns method since it's really well documented.

For the bass, we had major issues with the bass players GK Goldline 500. It just wasn't getting to where we wanted, so we decided direct was the way to go.

The bass is much better now, probably still needs some work though.

Attached is the newest mix. The balance is much better on this one and it feels much more glued together. There are still some details to work out, but thanks to everyone here, I think we are in better shape than when we started.
If you notice the mix, it's a bad mix. I realize I'm listening to a mix, but I should forget that. I don't. The panning is nuts, and the vocals at times are coming from the side of my head, like you used Q-sound or something. There's nothing wrong with a little movement, but that's ridiculous.

This kik is way better, but the balances are still out of whack. The snare isn't loud enough. The bass isn't loud or robust enough. And there is nothing but a big fucking gaping whole in the middle of the track every time you pan those vocals like that. Keep them in the middle. Or put one dominant one in the middle, and pan two others. But keep something in the middle. There's nothing else there other than a snare drum, that's way too low and tepid to boot.

Lastly, in regards to that snare, I'm guessing that compressing that snare is going to bring up the hat considerably, but you know what? It'd be better to have an absurdly loud hat (which you can ride by hand if you're so inclined), than to have a weak backbeat. I realize it's not the greatest snare drum tone on the planet, and that has mostly to do with the drummer and the drum, but you need to address that snare issue. I mean, that kik sounds like a sample to me, so even if it's not, you might as well put in a snare sample replacement. Something rude, ringy, and high pitched.

This is coming from someone who has never been happy with, nor kept a snare or kik sample in a mix or production. But I think this one would most probably be the first if I were mixing it. Alas. I'm not.

Enjoy,

Mixerman
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  #37  
Old March 30th, 2012, 02:09 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

Thanks for all the great comments/insight, it has really helped a lot.

Update 2:

Things are in a much better place than they were.

Instead of hard panning the vocals L and R, I moved them in to -20 and +20, moving to dead center. Puts them more in the middle, with a bit of motion and the emphasis that the band was looking for without being overly weird. It works much better.

I had to move the effects out of Logic and onto the DM-4800 since Logic kept overloading (one of the effects somewhere) and I'm not overly familiar with the effects but as of now, they are similar to what the band was asking for. The delay will certainly need fine tuning.

I used a bit of clownfuckery on the bass to see if I could beef it up a bit more. I'm not entirely positive that the sound is nailed down yet but the level is where it seems to want to fit.

Per Mixie, I gave the snare a serious beat down. I did have a sample under it to use for a gated reverb thing. After spending time with the snare, I felt the Phil Colins thing didn't work as well as I would have liked so I dumped it, instead Gateloping (Gatelope is AWESOME) the snare. If I pushed the snare harder, the drums went mono and it wasn't pretty. I had to use Yohng's W1 brick wall limiter to get the snare levels under control, as the drummer's snare hand was all over the map, not the optimal thing but it was what needed to be done. I also added a touch of reverb to it to get a bit of sustain out of it.

I am still considering layering a sample (per Mixie) on it but I wanted to get an opinion on where it's at first.

@John Eppstein - the kit is a Mapex Pro M, the snare is a Tama Warlord Masai.

Bass Drum mics were Audix D6 and EV RE20, overheads (Glyn Johns setup) were HDW Audio 306's, and the snare mic was a Sterling Audio ST-31 (I miked the shell as I am not overly fond of the top-of-snare-tennis-racket sound and under-snare just didn't work at all)

I'm guessing since no one's mentioned it, I'm going to guess that resolving the phase issue with the drums was successful?
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File Type: mp3 Ghost - Print 2.mp3 (6.49 MB, 70 views)
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  #38  
Old March 30th, 2012, 03:37 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

mmm... vocal effects were applied with a very large shovel.

Typical for a band production.

The verse could be a lot drier. The delay is a little distracting.

You may as well take the shovel and start digging for choosing not to have a snare top mic.

Even if you only need a bit of low end and stick attack, its always worth having.

I would overdub the original snare if you can with the snare wires much tighter.

Apart from that, its a cool song.
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Old March 30th, 2012, 05:07 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

T.Bay, I hear exactly what you're saying. Things sounded fine through the monitors...heard it in the car and about had a heart attack.

Thanks for the compliment about the song. Fortunately, it is a cool song, so it has been easier to listen to it for hours on end (as opposed to something awful).

Note to Self: When moving effects from ITB to hardware, please be sure there is no drag queen hiding behind the previous effects. That shit got toasty!

Also: Self, there is a difference between pre- and post-fader when it comes to effects. You can't send an effect pre-fader and expect it's level to change with the fader. It doesn't work that way.
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Old March 30th, 2012, 05:49 PM
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Default Re: Disappearing Kiks and Clarifying Bass

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Originally Posted by T.Bay View Post
mmm... vocal effects were applied with a very large shovel.

You may as well take the shovel and start digging
I can dig it.

Can you dig it?


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