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Thread: How to mix volume levels

  1. #1
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    How to mix volume levels

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    Hey, I am finishing my mixing and the last thing I have to do is set the right volume levels. Maybe there is some kind of tutorial which tells about that ? Because right know I am now sure which instruments should be the highest volume level and etc. For example how much hi hats should be below the lead instruments and etc.
    Last edited by dominic94; 06-27-2014 at 02:31 PM.

  2. #2
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    the only true test is what your ears tell you

    there are no magic numbers - if there were someone would have made an app to do that for you and we would no longer be having discussions about how to mix

    so apply the following idea and it's inverse

    all levels at the same nominal 0 point (about 85% of the throw of the fader towards maximum)

    now reduce the level of any track that gets in the way of clearly hearing the most important sound to you

    repeat the above step for the 2nd most and 3rd most and so on until you can clearly hear everything - mix accomplished

    you may then consider things like fx and eq (but only if needed) but then you will need to revisit the process and adjust all levels again
    BC: I've been making music since Before Computers were common in music
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  3. #3
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    It sorta sounds like you're saying you aren't doing anything with volume levels before you start.

    Like it sounds like you are doing eq, compression, etc before you've adjusted a fader. Is this true?

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    No, when i insert new sound in the mixer I always set the volume which sounds OK for me and do the quick EQ and leave it. When i finish my arrangement and everything I am doing the final mixdown

  5. #5
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    Put your master volume super low, that way you can easily hear which instrument is louder or softer than others. As far as choosing which ones should be the loudest in the mix, that's up to you. What do you want in the fore front? What instruments do you want to get the most attention?

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    I usually do all my instruments around -14db with eq'ing each sound in its specific sound range and then make room for the most important instrument by lowering the other instruments a little unless it's something in the mid or high end like blow instruments then put drums, snares, claps and hats at -10db and most all percussion around -12db then use a mastering plugin like limiter or maximus to adjust the correct band passes and then compress highs, mids and lows all sepratly by finding a compromise point. I wounder am I doing to much? But to me it honestly gives me a more un muddy sound. The sound is actually really clear. Only thing I still always have to tweak most of the times is making sure the "low mid" range is decent/correct to avoid speaker clapping or extra sounds on different monitor systems like car speakers and such. Wonder what yall think of my work flow!? Am I doing to much or still not enough?

  7. #7
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    I'm creating a new video on mixing to noise and gain calibration will be covered. I'll drop a note when it's ready. I think there is still a lot of confusion about hopw to structure gains and calibrate the master bus.

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    This is what I do. Find a reference track similiar to what you're making. Insert it into a channel. Now, lower that channel's volume quite a bit because it's hitting levels over 9000. Now, try to match the reference tracks instrument levels with yours. GAME OVER.

  9. #9
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    What exactly does hitting levels over 9000 mean?...
    Chillout from the vibrations of our universe

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