Basic Mixing Mistakes
Recording is only the beginning of the audio production process. Mixing is an equally crucial stage, and abiding by best practices it is the only way you’ll get the most from your tracks. Beginners can often make the following mistakes when mix their own music :
1. Having No Clear Vision
Before you touch anything, decide exactly what you want to achieve with your mix. Tinkering for tinkering’s sake can lead to constant detrimental errors and before you know it, the whole mix is now a mess.
2. Neglecting to Pan
Keeping all tracks panned to the centre dilutes sounds. Pan tracks to the sides starting with the least important until you are left with a good balance in the middle. Bear in mind that mixing using headphones can make it more difficult to pan correctly, as even slight panning sounds much more dramatic than through speakers. Remember to employ your phase correlation meter also.
3. Overusing Effects
Keep EQ, compression, reverb, and other effects to a minimum. To make frequencies louder, turn to the volume fader. An extreme use of effects will lose the original sound you created in the studio. Additionally, most Mastering Houses will request a copy of your track without any mastering effects.
4. Cutting Corners
Presets may seem like a great way to speed up the mixing process, but listening to the recording yourself and deciding exactly what each track needs will always yield better results. A lot of preset sounds are also engineered to sound fantastic on their own. Be mindful of where in the mix they are going to sit. Never be afraid to get out your sonic scalpel and trim away at those sounds. Remember that Less is always more.
These are just a few tips to help you along with mixing your own music.