The Actual Mix
Today we are going to keep up the next part of the mixdown and workflow guide which we are building up for our readers. Last time we bundled some tips how to manage your work when you actually start the whole working process, next we picked up some cherry tips for handy working mechanics. Being able to work efficiently needs careful preparing and planning – it’s better to spend some time thinking about the process, then mindlessly going into work on the new track without any idea how to keep everything in order.
Picking up the most important element
One of the crucial aspects of working on tracks from diverse genres is establishing the correct ‘most important element’ of the track. For instance, when you aim for hip-hop track you focus on the kick samples. If you go for an acoustic song you keep your vocals top-notch, you know the drill ! Focus down that element for your music production takes effort and takes time to work on it’s specifics, precision and quality importantly. Remember the reference part from the last guide? To make things clear – pick up the most important element of the audio track, build it up with the resemblance to the reference and then finally add up the other elements you’ve planned and the workflow will be amazing.
The ‘Low Volume’ plus ‘take your time’ argument
Probably every producer knows this but some of them won’t be able to tell why, besides of course: ‘You mix down in low volume so your hearing won’t be damaged’. Duh, that’s the obvious part, but crystal clear balance and less room for harshness in the audio isn’t so obvious. Be aware of that and you will know your job. Also, most of the time, if a low volume mix sounds really good, for the most part it will sound great with a massive volume gain. To keep up with the argument, if you are mixing like you should in low volume, please take your time. If you are making things as fast as possible, because you know you have to go to your daytime job, then find a better time for the mixdown.
Laziness and blaming
These are for the most part ‘the drama factors’ for most young producers we have had the pleasure to listen and expose. We cannot stress enough how important is to learn your stuff beforehand. If you are working in FL Studio for instance, learn the digital audio workstation as much as possible. This includes all the plugins and VST’s you are planning to use. Why you should do that instead of going for the ‘kill’? Because you cannot therefore blame everything on the software and you have to make progress with the proper mixdown. If you know your tools, blaming everything on this factor becomes irrelevant, keep your composure and work hard – that’s how you gain great results. For more ideas and tips await the next part of the guide, where we will cover common mistakes and other interesting music production oriented questions.