Dangerous 2-Bus Levels prior to mastering

Discussion in 'Mastering' started by audiokid, Apr 5, 2010.

  1. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    I'm guessing its all the same with the levels you want however, I thought to ask anyway or see what your thoughts are, results differences you see or what this topic invites in general with mixes coming from analog summing systems?

    Dangerous 2-bus Levels prior to mastering recommendations?
  2. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    I get mixes from summing boxes all over the map. But I think a good bit of headroom sounds better. But it all depends on the content and what the desired result is. Sometimes pushing it is the ticket, sometimes lots of room is the way to go.
  3. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    If you were getting a purely passive analog summing box, I would say stick with the levels you tracked with and output them through your DACs. If the track levels are well below FS, you may want to consider bringing them up a notch in order to use the greatest amount of your DAC's digital input range. The Dangerous 2-Bus is not a passive summer, but its input range is nevertheless up to +28dBu, which will likely be well beyond the maximum output of most DAC systems. Too low an input level will require you to raise the mix output correspondingly, and in doing so will also bring up the noise floor of the active summer.

    Some DACs produce a better sound as you use more of their input range, whilst others may be limited by their output amplifiers and sound better if you don't drive them too hard. I think therefore that your mix quality will be governed largely by how good your DACs are rather than by the summing box.
  4. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Got it, thanks

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