Easy Mixing Advice: Struggling with Legato

One reason many MIDI compositions don’t sound convincing is legato. If the notes, especially violin phrases, do not sound connected, even casual listeners will know immediately. This is especially the case with strings, but of course all instruments deserve convincing legato. I’m far from getting it 100% right, but I have discovered some aspects that… Continue reading Easy Mixing Advice: Struggling with Legato

Easy Mixing Advice: Compression and Orchestral Music

It’s a common misconception that orchestra music doesn’t need compression. Especially film music relies on compression, it’s important for the “Hollywood sound” we’re used to listening to for the last 30-40 years. So, compression is basically a good thing. Two reasons why: Orchestra music with its loads of timbres and combinations of textures is inherently… Continue reading Easy Mixing Advice: Compression and Orchestral Music

Easy Mixing Advice: Don’t underestimate Saturation

You did your best with reverb, eq and compression, yet your mix sounds “uncomfortable”? If you know that notion, you should make yourself familiar with saturation. Saturation is an effect that is provided by tube and tape recorder plug-ins. They come from the analog world and what they do is kind of magic that only… Continue reading Easy Mixing Advice: Don’t underestimate Saturation

Easy Mixing Advice: Headphone Position

This is probably the most awkward advice you will ever get: Check the position of your headphones on your ears! No kidding. Some headphones, especially On-Ears, but also some Over-Ears, sound different depending on how (well) they sit on your skull. And some people have ears that are very sensitive to those fine position adjustments,… Continue reading Easy Mixing Advice: Headphone Position

Easy Mixing Advice: Use Pre-Defined EQ Settings

If you’re like me then you are reluctant to use pre-defined settings, knowing that each situation requires specific treatment. That’s true, but if you’re just starting out using EQ and not really well versed, you might do your composition more harm than good. One possible way to go is: Look at the pre-defined settings and… Continue reading Easy Mixing Advice: Use Pre-Defined EQ Settings

Easy Mixing Advice: Fix the “Trouble Range”

One of the main issues with mixes based on samples and convolution reverb is a lack of definition and/or muddiness. I will not say it’s necessary for every mix, but chances are you can improve yours by reducing two frequency ranges: Place a -3 dB marker at 250 Hz and one at 500 Hz (Q=1)… Continue reading Easy Mixing Advice: Fix the “Trouble Range”

Easy Mixing Advice: Mix in MIDI

This is probably the most important advice I will ever give you: Don’t rely on mixing audio, get it right in MIDI first. It’s hard to admit, because your composition is so well-crafted and sounds so good already and you like it and you are used to listening to it on your headphones that you… Continue reading Easy Mixing Advice: Mix in MIDI

Easy Mixing Advice: First EQ then Reverb

It took me surprisingly long to realize that reverb not only puts early reflections and reverb tail onto your material, but actually alters the sound as a whole! You might have known that already, but I was thinking for a long time that a good reverb is supposed to leave the original sound as “untouched”… Continue reading Easy Mixing Advice: First EQ then Reverb

Easy Mixing Advice: Introduction & Distrust What You Hear

This new blog series is for you, if you’re a sample composer of orchestral works who (as I do) wants to compose and not spend your time mixing and mastering. If you haven’t got the budget for a studio or an engineer, you might find this upcoming series of blogposts useful. It took me years… Continue reading Easy Mixing Advice: Introduction & Distrust What You Hear