Mixing for Stereo, some beginner questions....



Hello everyone, well here at the end of the week I set off to record my first Album.

Hopefully I've got most of my methods figured out so far, the only thing that I've been unsure about is mixing and recording for stereo.

Ok, so basically I'll be recording a three piece singer/songwritter, acoustic, vocals, drums, electric bass, maybe a lead guitar overdub track.

I imagine I'll keep the vocals and bass in the middle of the mix as with the snare and kick. Overhead drum mics I'll send right and left, respectively.
and then as far as the acoustic and lead guitars go I was thinking of panning them one left and one right. Maybe keeping them halfway between far left/right and middle. Hope I'm making sense so far. Please correct me if I'm doing a no no.

Anyone see any problems with this? I've wondered if right and left stereo channels and panning will create problems if people listen to this in mono?

Any feedback would be much appreciated, thanks!


Well-Known Member
Mar 8, 2004
Tacoma, WA
Just something to consider -

try *not* mic'ing the snare seperately. Instead, try to get the kit sound without the snare mic'ed (most of the mixes that come my way for mastering have the snare WAY out in the mix where it totally doesn't belong. It's like everybody has a woody for the sound of the snare. It's just part of the kit...)

Anyway - mixing in a snare channel smack-dab in the middle with the voice, bass and kick is just asking for trouble with the voice. Try a 3-mic setup on the kit (two over heads and one kick. If you need more snare, move the overheads to allow for more snare. If you need more toms, move accordingly...)

Then, with your overheads (I like spaced pairs myself or even M/S in front of the kit) - pan a little wide (don't make your drummer go nuts though) and then seat the rest of the instruments in the middle.

Even with minor phasing issues from your overheads, your sound should still work just fine in mono.

Good luck,