Is There a General Order in Mixing Vocals?

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Member Since: Aug 31, 2007

Such as track cleaning first followed by normalizing, etc? Or is it experimental?

I've read numerous articles and they all seem to suffer from the habit of talking as though the reader already knows a good deal about mixing. I've done two songs. I just barely know what I'm doing. I haven't the faintest what a high shelf is or ratios or a chain.

This is all a necessary evil for me.

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Since: Jul 02, 2003

Oct 23, 2008 02:06 am

There are several good articles in the Tips section of HRC that will give you a basic understanding of the terms and get you started mixing. After you've digested those and you have specific questions there's plenty of people here ready to give answers.

As for mixing vocals, you should try to get your takes recorded as clean and close to a good level as possible so that cleaning & normalizing aren't neccessary. The mixing itself is dependant on what it's being mixed with and is indeed alot of trial & error until you get some experience under your belt, then it's just alot of trial and & error... :)


MASSIVE Mastering, LLC
Since: Aug 05, 2008

Oct 23, 2008 10:20 am

Normalizing isn't even on the table - Why would anyone ever normalize a track?

Since: Apr 03, 2002

Oct 23, 2008 11:00 am

When it's abnormal.

MASSIVE Mastering, LLC
Since: Aug 05, 2008

Oct 23, 2008 11:39 am


Czar of Turd Polish
Since: Jun 20, 2006

Oct 23, 2008 12:39 pm

Haha, it must be early cause I got a good snort out of that.

You should definitely gain a basic understanding of things such as compression ratios (and compression in general) and EQ terminology.

As far as mixing the vocals, I like to get my drums where I want, bring the bass up to a nice level THEN bring the vocals into play. I then bring up the guitars last which keeps me away from the "overpowering" guitar syndrome.

Since: Sep 29, 2008

Nov 02, 2008 07:20 pm

I have had a time or 2 when I wish I had a normalize button to push....sometime things just get twisted!

MASSIVE Mastering, LLC
Since: Aug 05, 2008

Nov 02, 2008 09:49 pm

Why? Normalization is a volume adjustment to a specified level. It doesn't do anything you can't do with any digital level control - Unless you're normalizing all your headroom away (which is what people tend to do with normalization for some unknown reason).

Since: Aug 31, 2007

Nov 05, 2008 07:26 pm

Guys, I was just using normalizing and track cleaning as generic examples. It was something I read in one of those books for dummies.
Since: Nov 27, 2007

Nov 06, 2008 07:02 am

so if you had a real crappy signal in, as far as level goes, you could normalize it a few dB?
as long as you dont erase the required headroom.
you could just use make up gain on your compressor i suppose anyway, so probably no need to normalize.

Czar of Turd Polish
Since: Jun 20, 2006

Nov 06, 2008 11:57 am

My standard routine.

Capture signal..
Sometimes delay if called for..
Light verb...

Hobbyist musician,pro recorder
Since: May 15, 2007

Nov 06, 2008 12:24 pm

Normalizing a vocal? No. Compressing it to make it more even (the human voice has a very wide dynamic range) and so moving around the mic doesn't make the volume drop off? Yes.

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