mixing advice - accoustic bass tracks

Discussion in 'Tracking / Mixing / Editing' started by snyderman, Sep 3, 2009.

  1. snyderman

    snyderman Active Member

    I'm trying to do my first mixing project with a bunch of tracks I've just recorded. I recorded some bass tracks four different ways to let me choose/create the best sound later and now would love some advice.

    I'd appreciate any feedback on the four sample track I posted.
    • What you like, don't like about the sound?
      Thoughts on which to combine/leave out?
      Advice on mixing to create a sound stage with depth?

    The final mix will include cello, jazz guitar and upright bass. Melody will most often be in the cello with a few guitar and bass solos.

    I'm also having level issue as I experiment with mixing down the various bass tracks into one. If the individual tracks are anywhere near 0dbs I end up with major clipping when they are bused together. Any general bit of knowledge that I should have on this part of the mixing process?


    PS i've posted the tracks as streaming MP3 tracks for ease but can post individual wav files if that is better for anyone...
  2. apstrong

    apstrong Active Member


    1. Don't use all 4.


    2. Turn them down

    But seriously now, I would pick 1 or 2 of them at most. If you have to use more than one, then pick one with more low end oomph, one with more finger noise so you can blend to taste. The low end gives it balls. The finger noise helps it cut through if there's a lot going on. The more you add after that, the more low end mud you're going to create. But a single track that has the tone you like, with some EQ on it and on the other instruments that are fighting for the same sonic space (i.e. cut one where you boost the other a little bit, or vice versa), is probably enough. IMHO.
  3. snyderman

    snyderman Active Member

    Yeah, I should be able to pick two tracks out of four to mix. I like the fingerboard sound that the 414 picks up but wasn't sure which other to go with.

    When I was tracking, i liked the QTC omni tucked under the bridge. Now I'm wondering if it is too boomy or muddy. Was wondering if that can be dealt with with eq or if I should mix it with the 414 w/ the m930 cardioid.

    Thanks for the response...I'm a performing musician more than a recording engineer so this is a different kind of listening & process...
  4. apstrong

    apstrong Active Member

    Well I'm neither so you're really in trouble now. Here's what I would do: get a reference track, some tune where you like the sound of the bass from the same genre of music you're recording and where you can isolate that sound well enough in order to really focus on it, and then spend some time listening to it on your monitoring system. Pick the recorded bass track that's closest to being the ballpark. Add in the more plucky bass track. Mess around with EQ and relative levels of the two tracks. Lather, rinse, repeat until it's close to the reference track.

    If you're looking for someone to tell you what your bass should sound like, it probably won't happen. So the first step is deciding what you want your bass to sound like, then experiment with a couple of your recorded tracks at most until you get as close as you can. Even better if you can do it with just one. More tracks = more mess, more potential problems to solve.
  5. snyderman

    snyderman Active Member

    Thanks. I'll start experimenting. The plan was to mix a couple of track down to one so that I'll have less to deal with. I think that I have decent sounds to start with at least. Just afraid of doing things the wrong way...guess that's what schooling is for.

    Thanks for the feedback.

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