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Thread: Mixing workflow

  1. #1
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    Mixing workflow

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    Hi,

    I want to finish about ten projects I have already arranged and cleaned (playlist, patterns and mixer tracks), but I find it difficult to begin. I would like to have a defined workflow with steps that should be done on a specified order. I know that each project differs, but having seen some tutorials I think some steps are common, like:

    1. Identify the most important elements of your mix (for example vocal)
    2. Set the volume of the elements from point 1 and then move to less important elements.
    3. Pan the tracks (vocal & bass & kick) in the center, rest panned.

    Etc. In short, do you have some routine you follow when doing your projects? If you could share your FLP files with me as well this would be a huge support.

  2. #2
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    I never follow a set pattern (but it would probably greatly benefit my speed & organization if I did)

    1. Identify the most important elements of your mix (for example vocal)
    for me it's usually the bass drum and snare (but I'm mostly making instrumentals)

    2. Set the volume of the elements from point 1 and then move to less important elements.
    I agree with this, I like to get the meat of the song at a good volume, then work on all the background noises / shakers / cymbals and such.

    3. Pan the tracks (vocal & bass & kick) in the center, rest panned.
    I don't know if this is a concrete rule, but it definitely can help to create space in the mix. If a sound doesn't sound good panned, I would leave it alone.
    Sometimes panning can create phase issues, but it is a very powerful tool as you learn to use it. Especially on vocals...try duplicating the channel & pan one all the way left and one all the way right and hear how wide it becomes

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  4. #3
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    Hi Charade,

    Thank you for your response. Actually I've heard about this workflow from some tutorials, will definitely give it more tries to better feel it and get more accustomed to it. Some farther questions:

    1. Do you render your tracks to audio before mixing? I've heard about that from the You Suck At Producing series (highly recommended), but now as I am on the stage I got some effects already put on channels with live instruments I think I will leave it as it is, but for the future I would like to switch to audio before implementing automations & effects.
    2. When you choose your most important instrument in the mix, do you have a defined peak for them? I heard somewhere that the kick & snare shouldn't exceed -3dB before mastering and I wonder if this is a good rule to follow or not.
    3. Actually I don't feel a lot of difference when using the pan knob (FL Studio)? Does it mean that I need to figure out more which instruments/audios compete with each other and EQ them or you have any better ideas how to separate them?

  5. #4
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    No Problem Vamorda !

    1. Usually yes, to help save CPU resources. You don't necessarily HAVE to, however.
    Effects can go on before exporting to audio, or after. Or both
    Always save a copy of your original project before bouncing to audio (in case you need to go back & fix anything)

    2. Yes I try to follow that rule too, to leave headroom for the master.

    3. Might be a way in settings to fix the pan knob if it isn't working, could even use a FL plugin or 3rd party to pan.

    I currently use Ableton 9, haven't used FL since like 2009 so a bit rusty there

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