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New singer trying to understand the process

Member for

3 years 5 months
Hey everyone. I am new to this forum. I have just been in a pro recording studio for the second time and my tracks have come back obviously compressed and sounding dull sound wise and fairly quiet... Do you know what I have to be saying back to the studio to get a louder, crisper sound? I know I am capable of a good, strong, crystal clear vocal so I am wondering why I sound crushed and dull. What have they done?

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Member for

19 years 4 months

Kurt Foster Sat, 06/23/2018 - 17:37
it could be a number of things happening. it's hard to make a call with out knowing a lot of things like mic and pre amp choice, room quality, what recorder is used, processing while tracking and mixing ... and a lot more. i would start by voicing your concerns to the recordist on your project.

Member for

12 years 4 months

kmetal Sat, 06/23/2018 - 18:47
Kurt Foster, post: 457814, member: 7836 wrote: it could be a number of things happening. it's hard to make a call with out knowing a lot of things like mic and pre amp choice, room quality, what recorder is used, processing while tracking and mixing ... and a lot more. i would start by voicing your concerns to the recordist on your project.
+1

Member for

8 years 9 months

pcrecord Sun, 06/24/2018 - 06:08
Louise, post: 457813, member: 51331 wrote: Hey everyone. I am new to this forum. I have just been in a pro recording studio for the second time and my tracks have come back obviously compressed and sounding dull sound wise and fairly quiet... Do you know what I have to be saying back to the studio to get a louder, crisper sound? I know I am capable of a good, strong, crystal clear vocal so I am wondering why I sound crushed and dull. What have they done?
I must caution, every recordist present himself has PRO STUDIO or PRO AUDIO ENGINEER, but not all of them are. Even between truely pro ones, they are bound to be better in some genres or have their own sound which may not fit your expectations.

You first need to figure out what the Studio gave you.
What is it :

  1. a premix which is just exporting the song to help you decide if your tracks are good enough and if you need to go back and record some part of it. If so it will need to be mixed
  2. a mix made to be sent to a mastering engineer who will deal with levels and sonic properties better than the mixing engineer. If so, mastering is needed
  3. the final product which may seem badly done to you.
  4. a professionnally done mix but your listening device is very cheap...
    class="xf-ul"> Second, talk to the engineer ! If he is any good, he/she will explain to you what he has given you and what is the next steps you should do.
    If it's the option 3, ask for the track files and make them mixed by someone else..

    If you want our help to assess what you have, please post a sample here. (it needs to be mp3 at max 320kb)
    We will gladly help you !

Member for

21 years 2 months

audiokid Sun, 06/24/2018 - 13:05
Welcome to our community!
Louise, post: 457813, member: 51331 wrote: Hey everyone. I am new to this forum. I have just been in a pro recording studio for the second time and my tracks have come back obviously compressed and sounding dull sound wise and fairly quiet... Do you know what I have to be saying back to the studio to get a louder, crisper sound? I know I am capable of a good, strong, crystal clear vocal so I am wondering why I sound crushed and dull. What have they done?
without knowing what exactly was used for equipment and what the recordist/ mixer did to process your tracks, the obvious answer to dull usually means poor quality in something and crushing usually means bad judgment in compression/ limiting.

Post an example and we will nail most of it down for you.

Member for

7 years 9 months

paulears Mon, 06/25/2018 - 12:21
So many so called pro-studios, simply apply their band treatment to a solo singer. Especially if the singer provides them with a pre-mixed track. Our band gets this every single time we do a PA supplied gig, because the house people think compression is applied the same on EVERY genre of music. It doesn't!

You also probably failed to be the client, and were passive. When they were mixing, did you say - I don't like that sound, it is dull and lifeless? Did you instruct them, or fall for the "I'm a professional engineer, you are just a singer" patter?

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