"flat"/"dull" sounding mixes from my DAW

Discussion in 'Computing' started by Multani, Aug 17, 2005.

  • AT5047

    The New AT5047 Premier Studio Microphone Purity Transformed

  1. Multani

    Multani Guest

    ok, i use just a tascam us-122, a dynamic sure mic, and cubase SX2.

    to listen to two short tracks i have recorded go to http://www.myspace.com/furtherdelay

    - as you can hear (the quality is higher on my comp of course- but the website it is uploaded to downgrades it...) there is no definition to anything! even though i mixed this up good and proper (the cross bones in particular). not only that but the overall volume is much lower than that of professional tracks, even thoguh i almost maxed the mixdown volume.........

    weird thing is- it sounds almost "right" (ie- like one of my fave band tracks) on my CD player speakers (where i monitor it) but anywhere else it is poop.

    im not sure (help here please anyone) but i dont think the tascam us-122 actually has an mic pre-amps....................it doesnt say on the box either way (if it has pre's or not) so i am unsure.

    would that account for the poor sounds??

  2. Opus2000

    Opus2000 Well-Known Member

    Apr 7, 2001
    What you are hearing is a lack of understanding of the mix process.

    The Tascam indeed does not have mic pres but that would not contribute to the "dull" sound you are hearing.

    What you need to understand is how to make a mix full and spatial.
    That, takes time and practice to teach your ears the proper frequencies for the overall mix and instruments within.

    Also mix techniques to get the overall level and clarity as well. Things like using multi banc compressors, reverbs, group channels and inserts on the master fader.

    Remember that what sounds good to you in your environment may not sound good on someone else's speakers. Always listen to the mix in as many places as possibly before saying to yourself that it's the perfect mix(which is very hard to do on the first go about or the 5th go about!)

    Opus :D
  3. geeknik

    geeknik Guest

    I wouldn't pan that lead like you are in the first song. The rythm shouldn't be panned and the vox are probably ok where they are if you bring the guitars up.
  4. Multani

    Multani Guest

    its weird tho- the first song (revenge of thoth) i didnt "mix" at all really apart from levels of everything (no eq or FX) but on the second song (cross bones) i did use eq to its full and it seems to have turned out even worse.........

    perhaps opus is right...........i just need more experience- but i am sure it is the no-existant mic-pres...................but unless i can get a more experienced person (like one of you) round my house to point me in the right direction i dont know what to do............

  5. Multani

    Multani Guest

    are there any good sources from where i can find out about the "mix techniques" you are talking about opus?
  6. roguescout

    roguescout Guest

    Buy and read this book:


    Or watch the DVD's:

  7. geeknik

    geeknik Guest

    If you want to email me your raw tracks I'd be happy to play around with it.
  8. Multani

    Multani Guest

    that would be cool. but i dont think all the files will fit in an email- and how do i isolate the wave sound recordings i want?

    arr i think ive done this wrong! right- from now on i must separate the wave sound tracks into each song folder- i have just got a big list of em now!

    because you would need both the cubase project file and all the audio files (quite a few of them!) to go with it right?!
  9. Opus2000

    Opus2000 Well-Known Member

    Apr 7, 2001
    Email a cubase project?! Eeeeek :shock:

    Best way to send a project to someone is via an ftp server..

    If you are sending a track to someone here's the best way to do this:

    compress the entire project folder. I like to use WinRar as it's a very good and fast method of compressing the entire project. This way it sends faster over the internet.

    Log on to the ftp and send it!

    Now when the person doing the mixing is done all they need to do is send you back the cpr file! Easy as that!

    If you want I have an ftp server which I can have you log on to send the project.

    One of the things I have done is helped people with mix techniques by showing them what I do with their projects in this exact way!

    It may take time to upload the entire session to the ftp but it's worth it in the long run.

    Remember this...EQ should be cut not added...the more adding you do the more you are going to change things drastically.

    Reverb and compression are your friends!

    Opus :D
  10. Opus2000

    Opus2000 Well-Known Member

    Apr 7, 2001
    Also if you have Skype and a microphone for your computer we can chat and I can explain via voice proper mix ideas and techniques.

    Sometimes words on paper can't explain procedures as well as voice.
    Plus Skype is free! Better than phone charges!

    My skype name is gdb717315

    Opus :D
  11. Multani

    Multani Guest

    wow, much thanks for that opus!- i will try the FTP thing later today and if i get really stuck i will try downloading skype..........................................altough my slow dial-up connection isnt gonna help any of this................................
  12. geeknik

    geeknik Guest

    If you have dial-up it may take forever. I could set up an FTP account for you on my server if you would like to give it a try. I love practicing with mixing so I'd like to give it a shot if you think you can get all the files uploaded.

    Does anyone know if his files will open up in my cubase LE? I am sure they will with some limitation. Is there anyway he can just send the raw wav tracks? So I can just insert them into sonar as tracks.
  13. Opus2000

    Opus2000 Well-Known Member

    Apr 7, 2001

    Cubase LE has many limitations and wouldn't open a regular Cubase cpr file well at all..especially if it had groups and fx channels set up.

    Also track count would be an issue as well.

    In order to get the tracks out he would have to bounce all tracks indivdually which would make them bigger.

    It's best that he work with someone that has the same program to make it easier.

    I would say that it's probably not going to happen on the ftp transfer with dial up. Way too long and slow!

    Also he's looking for someone to show him some techniques and not give the files to someone looking to learn as well! Sorry if that sounded rude but it's the honest truth.


    Opus :D
  14. Multani

    Multani Guest

    damn my infernal connection!!!!

    well thanks for all your suggestions and help anyways...........

    also- something that would help- is there a manual for cubase sx2 online somewhere? as i cant get mine- it just says "cant find file blah blah.pdf...............

    that would help.......

    .........and opus- would the skype thing work with dial-up?
  15. geeknik

    geeknik Guest

    Hey I understand man. I was just looking to get a little more practice myself and maybe give this guy a good mix.

    Check that post in the other forum you helped me out on I will give you a link to my new mix.


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