i NEED more help mixing vocals ..

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Member Since: Apr 12, 2004

ima bout to get an LP out .. and i need to learn more about how to mix vocals better ..

first of all, wut are the best effects settings to use..? i'm mixing with Cool Edit Pro (and i have a Yamaha MG10/2 mixer) .. and I know i gotta use dynamics processing, graphic EQ, and parametric EQ...is there anything else....? (well, besides reverb, etc...)

for compressing with dynamics processing....wut are some good ratios for the compression..? IN WHAT CIRCUMSTANCES do i need to know to make the ratio higher or lower..? same with the output gain, input gain, attack time, release time..so on, how do i know in the circumstances of the track to either higher or lower those settings and wut to put them at?

i see all this talk about its not good to add gain or some **** like that in EQ, but its good to cut..???? iight i dont understand .. wut settings does this apply to that you want to cut at __hz..?

for graphic EQ also, what area do i want my settings to be..? how do i know when to change them and a good area to put them depending on each track..?

for the parametric EQ, how do i kno where to put the frequencies..?? where do i cut the hz..? WUT are good settings for these and in wut areas should they be..?

thank you to anyone that can help .. i need this explained .. i dont want to be stuck following processes.....and i'm sick of being told "just put them at random settings for wutever sounds best"....well i want to know in wut circumstances to put them where, like HIGHER OR LOWER.....explain this simply, cuz as u can tell i'm not experienced with mixing, i always just used a process ..

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Since: Dec 23, 2002

Apr 12, 2004 06:59 pm

This is in regards to compression. I used it for two years before I started realizing its full potential. Here's what I do now that I know how to use a compressor.

First, I select a part of the vocal track that does not have any peaks. What I select represents the 'overall' volume of the track. Then, I check my compressor to see where that peaks. That's pretty much what threshold I use. Sometimes I'll bump the threshold up (as in, go from -3.8 dB to -3.2 dB) to allow for more dynamics.

Generally, I sing around -8dB, that's where I set my threshold, usually.

Next, I set ratio. This really depends on how much the peaks peak. If there's a lot of variability, I might go higher than 4:1; generally I set it between 2:1 and 3:1.

Then, I do attack. Vocals usually go lower than .5 for me. Attack basically sets how 'wide' a peak has to be before it compresses.

I don't do anything with release -- ooops!

Finally, I adjust the gain on the compressor to make up for lost volume until my track doesn't peak.

If there are still some obvious peaks, I go through and turn the gain down for those.

I hope this has been helpful. I'm by no means a 'master' of compression, but after half a year of doing it 'right', I finally think I've got the feel of it.

Since: Apr 12, 2004

Apr 12, 2004 07:06 pm

^ well, you're using an actual compressor .. keep in mind i'm using the dynamics processing option on CEP ..

Since: Sep 23, 2003

Apr 12, 2004 08:53 pm

that's what I'm talkin'bout Syn6. I use CEP for mastering. I do all my mix/recording through my mixer. I use the compressor on the overall mix and am not quite sure what settings to use. I've heard(on HRC:), that a 3:1 or 6:1 ratio is good for vocals, but I'm not sure if that's different for a final mix.

I'm using a directX compressor from sonic foundry, I'm not sure about it's quality, but I wish it would include some kind of meter at least.

anybody got any guidelines?

Since: Apr 12, 2004

Apr 12, 2004 09:12 pm

yea .. i jus am tryin to learn in wut circumstances i should compress more or less .. so on like that .. i'm not looking for direct settings to put them at, i'm looking for settings to put them at in certain situations .. feel me?

Chief Cook and Bottle Washer
Since: May 10, 2002

Apr 12, 2004 09:42 pm

Well to be honest I compress by ear. I use compression as a amplitude control on vocals not as an effect. I set threshold and ratio to where the dynamics of the vocals are within the range of amplitude that I and listening for. I set attack at a high enough value where it does not color the vocals. Release is pretty much the same, although I use Cubase SX for most of my compression and the auto release is most usually very accurate. A big plus to Cubase SX dynamics plug is the graphic display of how much signal is falling into the range of actual compression. This gives me a real nice simple starting point. CEP is a little more tricky as you really have no baseline. As mentioned above a good place to start threashold is where the vox is at a level you want as a average volume. If your compression ratio becomes high enough to create unatural effects such as vocal strain with no precieved volume increase look to using CEP to alter the volume of that passage using a linear negitive amplification if possible.

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