LP Grit Filter

A simple audio effect rack for use with the updated Live 9.5 Auto Filter. Because the new filter models offer overdrive and a lot of character, I’ve wrapped up a couple of features I commonly need: Increasing the filter drive is automatically volume compensated so you can add grit without changing level A Balance control blends in a […]

Building The Mix Room, Pt. 1: WHY?

For the last month or so, I’ve been busy putting together a studio dedicated to mixing. This has cost quite a bit of time spent researching, buying, and configuring gear, and more time spent building and installing acoustic treatments and figuring out ergonomics. And yeah, it cost a bunch of money too. I’m still not […]

SHOULD I MIX IN ABLETON LIVE? THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE GLITCHY

A couple of years back, I stopped mixing in Live. This started as a workaround for performance problems I was encountering, but turned out to have a great creative benefit as well. People are sometimes surprised to hear that my studio life isn’t entirely Live-centric. Well, for a number of years it was. When Live 7 […]

USING PUSH TO STEP SEQUENCE BASSLINES AND LEADS

After folks spend some time step sequencing drums with Push, they usually do a little chicken dancing and fist pumping. Once they get that out of their systems, however, a troubling question arises: “how do I do this with melodic parts?” The answer, strictly speaking, is: you can’t. However, the better answer is: with science!  […]

LISTEN TO THE STEREO STUFF

As I’ve mentioned in prior tips, the Utility device can be used to remove all of the mono information from a signal so you can hear the purely stereo information. Just set Width to 200%: Something I like to do is listen to my reference tracks at 200% just to get a sense of how […]

COMPRESSOR: THE INSERT A SIGNAL ANYWHERE-ERIZER

We’re still talking about mastering here, but this tip includes a cool technique that you may find other uses for.. When I’ve inserted my mastering chain into the mix, I sometimes like to use Spectrum to have a look at the difference between my mix and the track I’m referencing. This presents an interesting problem. […]

MASTER IN THE MIX, pt. 2

As I’ve mentioned a couple of times, I find that applying mastering processing to a nearly completed mix can help draw attention to flaws in the mix. In particular, I sometimes find peaks in individual tracks, overly dense sections of the mix, or errant low frequencies that sound fine until I try to squash the […]

MASTER IN THE MIX?

There are two different techniques for applying mastering processing to a mix: in the Master track of the Set you’re mixing in or in a separate Set just used for mastering. The conventional approach is, of course, to complete the mix then master it separately. However, there are always variations. If I’m doing a quick […]

CUTTING THE LOWS

Remember a few tips back when I was talking about seeing sharp drop off in frequencies below 30Hz? These super low frequencies can consume a lot of mix headroom without contributing much to the outcome. These frequencies can cause limiters to respond very agressively and really make a mess of things. They can also contribute […]

SETTLING FOR LESS

You may find that, even after tweaking the limiter a bit, you’re just not able to get acceptable sound quality with the level of loudness you’re going for. That’s understandable – music these days is mastered incredibly loud. It takes a lot of skill to get stuff that loud with good sound quality. (There’s also […]