Nice open sound?

Discussion in 'Mastering' started by yannfan8, Jan 18, 2009.

  1. yannfan8

    yannfan8 Guest

    **This is a question about Panning Laws**

    I've been noticing a clear difference between my mixes and those of professionals. In the past, I never did much with panning and everything was usually mixed in stereo.

    But now after a little experimentation, I've noticed that when I pan certain tracks, the sound of my mixes becomes a lot more open and spacious. I truly believe this is one of the key elements in distinguishing an amateur mix from a professional mix.

    Correct me if I'm wrong but this is how I see it:

    If you pan everything in the center, then all your sounds are struggling to get through the middle passage of the monitors. But when you pan some of the tracks left or right, more room becomes available for the sonic waves to pass through each speaker. Is this correct?

    With that in mind, where can I learn more about panning laws and how to use them to my advantage? Alan Moulder (mixing engineer for Nine Inch Nails and dozens of other bands) create absolutely wonderful mixes and it's like every single sound is able to get through.

    Thanks guys!
  2. Greener

    Greener Guest

    If everything is panned down the center you have a mono signal. Stereo doesn't just mean two speakers, it's about the differences in sound coming out of the two speakers which adds spacial characteristics.
  3. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Member

    Sep 26, 2005
    Hey, yeah, Panoramic Potentiometers. Instruments struggling through the middle? Sounds like salmon? Not if you're a good engineer. A lot of my work was purposefully mixed in mono, for commercial jingles in the 1980s. They were never intended to be released in stereo. If a dynamic mix which means that, you get a chance to hear everything. Some volumes go up while others go down. But of course, at one point I was asked to deliver them in a spectacular sounding stereo demonstration. So not only do you have to use those Panoramic Potentiometers, you have to understand how to use time delays, Echos & Reverbs, to create a faux stereo mix. It's not really faux stereo but it's not exactly true stereo. It's tracks panned willy-nilly, left & right, with the above-mentioned effects panned to the opposite channels blah blah blah blah. Then expertly balanced (because as mixers we are also known as "balance engineers") so that you hear everything & nothing is lost or buried. Not something you can easily crank out without a little practice. So what are you doing here? You should be practicing Pan those suckers & make us some nice stereo sound. What most people don't quite understand is when you have any Mono track, you pan it left Center & right. When you have a stereo track, you balance it left center & right. That is unless you want something Centre instead of Center?

    Now what do you do with 8? 16? Or 24 tracks? What about 32? I've never gone any further than that. Well maybe 48? But that's almost like twice 24? So it's not as confusing as 32. I don't do good with threes. Well maybe sometimes with an orchestra? I just want to know how you approach a surround mix? Do you sit on both sides of the console? At the same time or one at a time? Times 5.1? Thankfully I don't have to worry about that as I still have a 1970s Quadra phonic mixer. It's only two lesss so I don't think anybody will notice?

    And remember you should always check your mixes in mono. Why? Because if there is any strange phase cancellations? You might discover that John Lennon may not in fact be dead? It's really tough to understand that because it's usually backwards. But I think he might be might be in cahoots with Elvis?? Just make sure man, you don't answer the phone.

    See how easy it is?
    Ms. Remy Ann David

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