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Fun, fun, in 5.1

I think we all know that 5.1 is killer for movies and special effects and what not, but has anyone had any luck mixing a rock band like in this way? I was playing around with it and we got some pretty cool sounding stuff, but It was all wildly guesstastic since we had never done this before. Ane we were taking a sterio mix to 5.1 which means it was not tracked to 5.1.

I'm thinking track guitars 4 times and put them all around.

Place drums from a more accurate drummer perspective, but use 4 overheads (phase nightmare?)

Base? maybe centered between the L/R front channels

vox in the middle channel

verbs all around, and delay in the back?

What do you guys think any tips, tricks, or techniques?


cfaalm Wed, 03/08/2006 - 09:13
Yo Vaylence, you are a true pioneer.

I have no experience with this stuff myself, but I have a few suggestions.

Vocals will do well on front as well as rear, especially backing vocals.
Full fledged rear speakers can do anything that the frontspeakers do, so the low stuff can go anywhere, like the bassnotes of a synth in rear and bassguitar in front.

If you place it in the drummer's perspective then that's one way to approach the concept. You could also use the 5.1 to place the listener in the middle of it all. So the listener sits in the drummers seat or on stage / recording room where the singer is.

I'd love to hear some of the material once you have something to listen to.

I am curious if someone can comment on the 4 overhead mics. I'd think you will pan those hard Lr/ Rr/ Lf/ Rf

Have you ever been to a live concert of Pink Floyd? This will give you some idea of your possibilities. It was not 5.1 but sort of 5.0. Sound- and visionwise the most exciting live concert I visited. Why not take that experience to the living room?

Rock on!

JoeH Thu, 03/09/2006 - 11:04
Sounds great; I'd say; Keep it going and learn as much as you can.

You can always offer the 5.1 mixes as "value added" discs to your CD sales. If you've got the software to do it, put a 5.1 Dolby Surround Mix on the DVD-A as well as a TRUE DVD-A mix, and let the end user sort it out, depending on their rig. (Trust me, if they DO have a DVD-A player, they'll know how to make it work.)

The main trick is to make sure it all "Folds-down" into stereo when people are playing 'em in stereo. The down-mix function is always good to test, because you just never know....

You can also try out Dolby Prologic II - which can be seen/played as normal stereo mix on regular equipment, but when the Pro Logic circuit is engaged, it opens up to a 5.1 matrix-type mix. Lots of TV shows are going out this way, and unless I'm mistaken, you can create what appears to be normal redbook audio CDs that contain the Prologic info.