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Author Topic: Mixing Approach.  (Read 8825 times)

CCC

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #15 on: March 16, 2005, 08:37:37 am »

cgc wrote on Wed, 16 March 2005 12:38

John Sorensen wrote on Tue, 15 March 2005 18:32


This reminds me of a funny story. A very fine engineer, in his younger days, reportedly was under the mistaken impression that using the front/back panner on a quad buss console, while mixing in stereo, helped him to make certain elements sit "back" in the mix. It's anyone's guess what he thought the front/back panner did exactly....suffice it to say that panning to the rear, when mixing in stereo, just makes it quieter....which might be construed as pushing something "back" in the mix, I guess Smile


Feeding the rear channels into a stereo reverb could work really well.  If I had access to a quad board I would like to try that myself.  


Sure - it would be a post fader/post pan stereo reverb send - something you could accomplish by sending lower faders to a pair of multibusses as well and patching those up to a reverb. As you realize, of course, this wasn't my initial point - it was that the use of the rears when mixing in stereo merely attenuates the signals you are panning to the rear, which the gentleman I mentioned did not understand. He's apparently quite a good engineer nowadays, or so they tell me, notwithstanding that little faux pas.....
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Gordon Rice

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #16 on: March 16, 2005, 09:24:39 am »

compasspnt wrote on Tue, 15 March 2005 18:35

BY THE WAY

I should have mentioned before (and I am sure this will elicit howls of rage from many) in discussing my mixing approach, that my number one rule is:

ONLY MAKE ONE MIX, AND MAKE THAT THE RIGHT ONE.

No vocal up mixes.

No vocal down mixes.

No alternate-decide-later mixes.

Beatles didn't do it...I don't do it.

Be a man, and do a man's mix.


YES YES YES!  Make a commitment!!


Quote:

I have mixed for clients, of course, who demanded multiple mixes.  In that case, you really need to follow their wishes, unless you can talk them out of it.  I worked a few years back mixing for a well known artiste who wanted every kind of "this up" and "that up" and "this down" and "that down" mix you can imagine, in every possible combination.  For an entire album, the average number of mixes per song was 19.


I once worked on a mix that was to be used in a film; producers wanted so many "this up, that down, that out" versions that it took us nearly eight hours and 10 reels of half-inch just to print the bloody thing!  Yeesh!!

Quote:

This meant also that, although I put the MAIN, BEST (in my opinion) mix to 1/2", that he took all 19-ish mixes on DAT (!) to master from.  And he edited, and edited, and edited between them...you should have heard the phone call from the mastering engineer later, as we comiserated!


That's the thing, though--all too often it's the *client* who's afraid to make a commitment.

--gmr
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compasspnt

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #17 on: March 16, 2005, 01:55:58 pm »

Austin Ince wrote on Wed, 16 March 2005 04:22

Don't think that's true about the Beatles. George Martin did do two track masters of the mono mixes, backing track one side, vocals the other, so it could be rebalanced in mastering. Strictly speaking I suppose this was stems. These were never intended for stereo release but eventually were!


If this is so, I stand corrected.  Thank you!

However, it won't change my philosophy one iota...if they didn't commit, then it was their problem...
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Tomas Danko

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #18 on: March 16, 2005, 02:32:32 pm »

compasspnt wrote on Wed, 16 March 2005 18:55

Austin Ince wrote on Wed, 16 March 2005 04:22

Don't think that's true about the Beatles. George Martin did do two track masters of the mono mixes, backing track one side, vocals the other, so it could be rebalanced in mastering. Strictly speaking I suppose this was stems. These were never intended for stereo release but eventually were!


If this is so, I stand corrected.  Thank you!

However, it won't change my philosophy one iota...if they didn't commit, then it was their problem...


Darn it, now that I know they didn't commit it's like all the cred and respect went out the window as far as I'm concerned with these guys called the Beatles. It's outrageous, and no two ways about it!

....or, not really. Very Happy

Cheers,

Tomas Danko - who also is committing to commitment. And final mixes.
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Tomás Mulcahy

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #19 on: March 16, 2005, 03:43:03 pm »

compasspnt wrote on Wed, 16 March 2005 18:55

Austin Ince wrote on Wed, 16 March 2005 04:22

Don't think that's true about the Beatles. George Martin did do two track masters of the mono mixes, backing track one side, vocals the other, so it could be rebalanced in mastering. Strictly speaking I suppose this was stems. These were never intended for stereo release but eventually were!


If this is so, I stand corrected.  Thank you!

This is most definitely not true! George used the stereo machines as a 2 track multitrack, allowing the Beatles to first get the backing track down and then do the vocals later. In the 1970s Capitol (EMI USA) issued these masters in "stereo" without consulting George Martin or any Beatle.

AFAIK the "2 track as multitrack" approach ceased for the "Rubber Soul" sessions when they got the Studer 4 track machines.

And just to prove that I an not making this up, George Martin writes about this in his book "All you need is ears".

Those Capitol issued LPs are highly valued in some circles because it's the closest you'll get to hearing a Beatles master tape...

compasspnt

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #20 on: March 16, 2005, 04:06:33 pm »

Thanks Tomas,

I didn't think this was true, but far be it from me to disagree when I am not 100% sure about something.

I cannot imagine GM or GE or any of The Beatles going upstairs to mastering with a two track, and mixing it there!!!!

Now as for Capitol's Beatle mastering, NOTHING WOULD EVER SURPRISE ME.  What a travesty.
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Ozzy

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #21 on: March 17, 2005, 02:36:23 am »

That's true about the Capital reissuses. But I wonder how they got hold of the 2 track masters in the first place. I imagine they were sent to mastering instead of a mono master? Was this a mistake or didn't a mono master exist? I don't know.

I wouldn't put my house on this to be true but I was told it by reliable sources at Abbey Road. I'll check the details with them when I'm there tomorrow and report back their version of events.

By the way I'm with you on the one version of the mix Terry.
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Tomás Mulcahy

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #22 on: March 17, 2005, 12:52:20 pm »

Easy- the tapes belonged to Capitol/ EMI! Not to the Beatles.

In fact, in the 1960s, they liberally varispeeded and added reverb/ echo to those 2 track tapes when mixing to mono for the US releases. Hence the latest Beatles re-issue box set of US releases. They sound horrible! Nothing is sacred to these people!

BTW, shouldn't we be calling them "session tapes" and not "master tapes"?

wwittman

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #23 on: March 17, 2005, 01:21:08 pm »

Quote:

(For many years I refused to admit that there were any panning positions other than the three "cardinal points" of left, right, and centre, but recently I have actually started panning in between a bit...but I feel like a sell-out.)


I just read this.

You SHOULD feel like a sell-out!  {g}

I almost never put anything anywhere other than L-R or centre.
It's unnatural.
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Bob Olhsson

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #24 on: March 17, 2005, 03:24:51 pm »

wwittman wrote on Thu, 17 March 2005 12:21


I almost never put anything anywhere other than L-R or centre.
It's unnatural.
The deep dark secret is that, at least in pop music, mono won the battle between mono and stereo.

Did somebody say "quad" or "5.1 surround?"

right...

Ozzy

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #25 on: March 17, 2005, 04:57:55 pm »

I think 2 track masters for a mono cut will do me?
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Tomás Mulcahy

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #26 on: March 18, 2005, 11:17:19 am »

Austin Ince wrote on Thu, 17 March 2005 21:57

I think 2 track masters for a mono cut will do me?

That definition only applies if those sessions were intended for stereo release... which is the point we are arguing! I contend that they weren't.

No Beatle ever attended a stereo mix down, because the mono mix was the important one. Which proves Bob O is right once again (isn't he always!).

I will have to buy Sir Martin's book again, my copy is missing.

Bob Olhsson

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #27 on: March 18, 2005, 11:38:38 am »

Most important is the fact that the production choices and decisions were made for mono. Early stereo mixes were made by comparing everything to the mono master and trying to match the balance. The only exception to this was classical which was recorded live and frequently with another recording team at the same time in the early days. A singular exception to this was the recordings done here in Nashville at RCA where they went against company policy and recorded stereo with the mono made by summing the channels.

Ozzy

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #28 on: March 18, 2005, 11:54:18 am »

We agree that these tapes weren't intended for stereo release. I wonder how they ended up being used as such?

Yes I know they spent the time mixing the stereo and nobody really bothered about the stereo mixes.

For what reason did the split track exist?

I don't know? I'll ask Alan Rouse at Abbey Road, who knows more than anyone on this.

I could be wrong.

Regards
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Tomás Mulcahy

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Re: Mixing Approach.
« Reply #29 on: March 18, 2005, 02:20:46 pm »

Two track was all they had available. Abey Road was always very far behind in adopting the new technologies. Sir Martin discusses this whole issue in his book! He also explains how to varispeed in semitones Smile

I'd be interested in what your friend has to say though.
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