Old 05-01-2021, 07:31 AM   #1
darjama
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Default The Reaper Mixing Contest - May 2021, Happy Pills

REAPER CONTEST - May 2021
(ONLY REAPER PLUGINS ALLOWED)



OFFICIAL WEBSITE: reaMIXed.com


MIXING: 1-16 May
VOTING: 20-26 May
RESULTS: 28 May
FEEDBACK: 29-31 May



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This month's song was selected by Regisfofo, last month's contest runner-up. The track is Happy Pills by Candlebox. It's a live recording courtesy of the Telefunken Live from the Lab series.

Please remember:

-NO GLUING OF FILES
-ONLY NATIVE REAPER FX -or- non-Native JSFX files that you include with your submission.

I've had to turn away a few entries recently, which I hate to do when someone has worked hard on their mix.

You can download the multitrack from the website or clicking on this link.

Again, no prize this month, aside from the customary track-picking privileges for the next month's contest.


Happy mixing!
-Daryl

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Old 05-01-2021, 02:10 PM   #2
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https://youtu.be/vrneH8qctSA
The recording.
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Old 05-05-2021, 04:06 PM   #3
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Thanks for the great song.

I may not be eligible for the contest yet, but if I win the prize throw it at me. First upload and winner (joking) The truth is I'm practicing listening and imitating mixes, so anyone is welcome to comment on my mixes.

Following the mixing results:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1DRO...ew?usp=sharing
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Old 05-06-2021, 09:29 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by masbro View Post
Thanks for the great song.

I may not be eligible for the contest yet, but if I win the prize throw it at me. First upload and winner (joking) The truth is I'm practicing listening and imitating mixes, so anyone is welcome to comment on my mixes.

Following the mixing results:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1DRO...ew?usp=sharing
I didn't get your submission, please submit via https://reamixed.com/submit and make sure you've read the rules: https://reamixed.com/getstarted

Thanks!
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Old 05-12-2021, 08:46 AM   #5
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Submitted mine.
What a song isn't it!!
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Old 05-13-2021, 06:38 AM   #6
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Submitted.
Good luck everybody.
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Old 05-13-2021, 02:03 PM   #7
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Just uploaded my Mix. We are moving next week so it may be some time before I'll have the time to sit down and work on a mix for fun. This was basically my last chance to finish the mix. I had fun with it and tried things I hadn't before, lots of automation, nothing to outrageous just things to keep the mix moving and interesting. Much less compression than I usually use...just a whole new technique basically.

We'll see how it's received I guess!
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Old 05-14-2021, 01:40 AM   #8
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Mine is Up!
Almost in the line. Was a busy month.

Hugs for everyone!
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Old 05-14-2021, 07:44 AM   #9
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Just uploaded
That's my 2nd try in this contest
Good luck to all

It again took took quite a while for me to reach the -14dB LUFS / -1dB peak requirement. Does anyone know an easy way to reach this?
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Old 05-14-2021, 12:04 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jopame View Post
Just uploaded
That's my 2nd try in this contest
Good luck to all

It again took took quite a while for me to reach the -14dB LUFS / -1dB peak requirement. Does anyone know an easy way to reach this?
Hi!

For the loudness issue I usually use a script called "Render LUFS" by Heda.

https://reaper.hector-corcin.com/app/render-lufs.

It is a great tool that make my Life easyer since a lot of time.

I Hope this help.

Cheers.
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Old 05-14-2021, 12:07 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by javiramallo View Post
Hi!

For the loudness issue I usually use a script called "Render LUFS" by Heda.

https://reaper.hector-corcin.com/app/render-lufs.

It is a great tool that make my Life easyer since a lot of time.

I Hope this help.

Cheers.
Ah nice thank you!
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Old 05-14-2021, 01:59 PM   #12
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Submitted! This time I only used my headphones as I am away from home. Very curious how this will turn out. Good luck everyone!
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Old 05-15-2021, 08:06 AM   #13
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Submitted my files.

Thanks for the contest, Daryl!
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Old 05-15-2021, 10:09 AM   #14
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Submitted mine too - in extremis. I thought I could never finish it, those peaks were killing me. I'm not expecting any prize this month

I also get a feeling this one is going to be tough to mark.
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Old 05-15-2021, 10:11 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by javiramallo View Post
Hi!

For the loudness issue I usually use a script called "Render LUFS" by Heda.

https://reaper.hector-corcin.com/app/render-lufs.

It is a great tool that make my Life easyer since a lot of time.

I Hope this help.

Cheers.
Finally, I managed to run the Heda Render LUFS script. It's really useful. Thanks a lot for the hint!!
I had no clue that there is going on so much in the background.
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Old 05-15-2021, 09:24 PM   #16
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I have just uploaded my mix. I didn't have enough time to do the mix as I have other priorities in music as well plus on top of that work and doing outside yard work that needs to get done.

It was only just recently that I remembered that I have seen this band open up for Rush back in the early 90's in Buffalo, NY.

I tried to use some different plugins from JS in this mix that I have never used before just for some playing with to see what I could get out of them.
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Old 05-16-2021, 01:27 AM   #17
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Hi friends.

My reference track this month was Sirens by Pearl Jam!

Although this is not exactly same kind of track, it have (in many parts) the felling and balance that I would like to achieve in terms of Drums,bass and Guitars for this mix.


I must admit that I didn't got it! Hahahaha

Usually, I spend a lot of time in the beginning of the mixing process in search of a good reference track where to drive my mixing decisions.
I consider that point one of the most important part in my "how to".

I use this reference track setting up in my Daw, in one track which is pointing directly to a hardware output in order to avoid the master process (or any other in the way).
Also I measure/adjust this reference track to -14LUFS, this way is not only a spectral balance reference for me but level reference too.

So.

What about yours referencing?
Do you choose a reference track?
How do you do this?
How do you use it? Do you put then in one track in your DaW avoiding the Master process?


Cheers.
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Old 05-16-2021, 07:08 AM   #18
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Hi Javi,

FWIW, I have never ever used a reference track. I did not even know what a reference track was until last month, when some frantic online discussion convinced me to buy Metric A/B for pocket money (money down the drain so far), assuring me that this would change my life.

I get the point of a reference track and all that, what bothers me on a 'philosophical' level is that you're just borrowing the sound of a specific era.

Case in point: the 90s and the grunge scene. I loathe the sound from that era. (hence my lack of enthusiasm for this month's track). Do I want to copy it just because it's the same genre? Mixing (in our non-commercial circumstances at least) should be about what we want to hear, not what some producer wanted to create x years ago.

But maybe with the tools that we now have, it feel reassuring and safe to do this? I don't know.

Sorry if it sounds like a rant, it is Sunday afternoon after all and there was good wine earlier on
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Old 05-16-2021, 09:59 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jansen View Post
Hi Javi,

FWIW, I have never ever used a reference track. I did not even know what a reference track was until last month, when some frantic online discussion convinced me to buy Metric A/B for pocket money (money down the drain so far), assuring me that this would change my life.

I get the point of a reference track and all that, what bothers me on a 'philosophical' level is that you're just borrowing the sound of a specific era.

Case in point: the 90s and the grunge scene. I loathe the sound from that era. (hence my lack of enthusiasm for this month's track). Do I want to copy it just because it's the same genre? Mixing (in our non-commercial circumstances at least) should be about what we want to hear, not what some producer wanted to create x years ago.

But maybe with the tools that we now have, it feel reassuring and safe to do this? I don't know.

Sorry if it sounds like a rant, it is Sunday afternoon after all and there was good wine earlier on
Hi Jansen.

Definitely You don't need METRIC-AB or any other such plugin. Although I recognize that they can facilitate the workflow when it comes to referencing.

I strongly advise you to use a reference track, and let me explain why.

The point of having a reference track to go to from time to time during the mixing work is not to imitate or copy the sound, nor the character of that reference track. Although you could if you want such as thing. .

If you let me, I'll bored you with a bit of recent recording and mixing history:

Since the democratization of recording and mixing (20 or 30 years ago), it was discovered that, by not working in a controlled environment, that is, in a recording studio designed to be acoustically correct and with a knowledgeable and experienced person in charge, the results of the mixing work were just bad, inconsistent, and uneven.

The rooms of the "home studios" are a continuous source of problems due to their anti-acoustic geometry, due to their erroneous or non-existent acoustic treatment and because the human in charge tries to do what was done, until then, by experienced professionals in the studio.

A partial solution to this came from the hand of "reference tracks" which is nothing more than incorporating into our project (in an appropriate way*) a track that has been recorded (probably)in a professional studio, in a professional way and by experienced people. In this way, by going to the reference track from time to time, we will get an idea of ​​whether we are approaching an acceptable sound or we are doing something crazy. No more.

Thanks to them (to the reference tracks) we find answers to questions such as:
Am I loading my mix with a lot of bass?
Will my mix be too sharp?
Am I using a lot of reverb without realizing it?


In short: the use of a reference track is the tool we have at our disposal to overcome the problem that we are mixing in a room (probably a parallelepiped), with monitors that are often inappropriate for our room or their position in it and finally our lack of skills.
This is the way to get around these problems at the same time we learn.


*This is how my sessions always look like. The very beginning tracks always are my ref tracks (In BLUE). This tracks are not being processing by any process. they are directly pointing to a hardware output in order to flow directly to the speakers when I solo them.



After years I could say that the majority of multi-track work session in a home studio I found does not have least than 1 or 2 reference tracks.
I hope this help.

Big Hugs
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Old 05-16-2021, 10:25 AM   #20
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Thanks for the explanation Javi. Seeing the consistency of the quality of your mixes in this contest, you might be right indeed

I'll try it next month, we'll see...
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Old 05-17-2021, 01:40 PM   #21
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I know I should reference track more constitently, but I only use them sparingly to 'reset' my ears when I think I'm tiring my ears. But most of the time I prefer to make a break though.
In the other hand I sometimes do compare my mix with a quick balance mixdown I do at the beginning of my sessions to check if I'm going in a better direction or just running in circles...
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Old 05-20-2021, 12:47 AM   #22
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FYI, having some computer problems, so I may need to push back voting, will let you know tomorrow where I'm at.
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Old 05-20-2021, 10:42 PM   #23
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Yeah, I'm going to need an extra 24 hours to get the files up, sorry folks.
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Old 05-20-2021, 11:45 PM   #24
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It's not a big deal. No worries. We just have to be thankful for your work.
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Old 05-22-2021, 10:05 AM   #25
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Okay voting is live. I've extended the end of voting by a day.

https://reamixed.com/vote/

A few of you I'm missing files for, I'll contact you for them shortly.

Good luck!
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Old 05-22-2021, 03:06 PM   #26
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Thanks! I hope you got your computer problems sorted out.
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Old 05-23-2021, 12:43 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darjama View Post
Okay voting is live. I've extended the end of voting by a day.

https://reamixed.com/vote/

A few of you I'm missing files for, I'll contact you for them shortly.

Good luck!

Thanks Daryl..
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Old 05-28-2021, 05:15 AM   #28
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Hopefully I didn't leave anything out. You may have had trouble reaching me as we moved and my studio PC is still not set up.!

Didn't get time to vote. I'm in training for a new position in my company, and I do t have much free time right now. After work, I have tons of boxes to unpack and, well there just isn't much time at all right now.

I apologize to everyone for not having voted or provided feedback this time after submitting my own entry. Frankly, I was lucky to have enough time before moving to complete my own mix.

We will see how it is received. I took a very minimalist approach this time. Also did a TON of automation, which I felt needed to be done. Anyway, crossing my fingers!

Good luck everyone!
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Old 05-28-2021, 07:16 AM   #29
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Congrats to Grundton, in 1st place this month. Nicely done! I'll be in contact shortly about picking the song for next month.



see the results and comments at https://reamixed.com/results/
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Old 05-28-2021, 07:38 AM   #30
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Congratulations to the winner. And to the rest of the podium as well.
Great to share this experience with all of you, mates.
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Old 05-28-2021, 09:01 AM   #31
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Congrats Grundton! Well done.

Just want to say thanks again to Daryl for administering this whole thing and to all the participants who submit mixes and take the time to comment. There's so much to learn by comparing mixes and reading the comments. This contest has been fun and super helpful to me. So Thank you!

I try to learn one big thing about mixing from this contest every month. This month it was the importance of reference tracks, thanks to Javi's posts above. It's really easy for our ears to get used to a bad sound!
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Old 05-28-2021, 09:12 AM   #32
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Congrats to Grundton and to Dex (my personal favourite!). I have to admit I almost didn't enter this month's contest because the song was really not my cup of tea, but I 'm glad I did in the end. I did not expect to be ranked in the top 10 considering you can not even hear the bass in my mix .

Which brings me to my second point: I'm always very interested in the comments and then I always listen to the different mixes while reading everyone's comments to 'hear what y'all hear' - very educational. And my mixes tend to always get the same comments - snare too loud, kick too round, mix too dry, and so on. And everytime I read that, an old Wilco song pops up in my head, a song whose sound had a profound influence on what I now want to hear, and which I am maybe unconsciously trying to recreate in every one of my mixes.

It is an obscure Wilco song; I don't even really like Wilco (even though I was part of the alt-folk scene once), and I certainly would not listen to that kind of music now, but the sound of it had a huge effect on my musical perception. It is basically the driest of dry sounds. It sounds almost unmixed, with a big muffled snare. That snare still haunts me. It is music without make-up, without what you would expect from a professional recording, as if the band was with you in the room, late in the night. I realize now that I'm writing this that I have been chasing this sound probably because - alert: psychological shortcut! - what I treasure most in human relations is sincerity and simplicity. I realize now that this song is the sound translation of the human values that are the most precious to me.

Here's the song, if you're interested:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2X1xrmTaIfw

I don't know why I'm writing this, I certainly don't think I need to justify myself for putting the snare too high in the mix , but maybe the conclusion of this post is that we're all looking for that specific sound that at one point has knocked us out, and that we should appreciate that we are not looking for the same things - hence I will continue to have big snares and round kicks, sorry guys TETO!

And once again: thanks Daryl for this contest and for all the work you put into it. It is very much appreciated, friend.
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Old 05-28-2021, 01:07 PM   #33
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Thanks for your votes. Personally I think Javiramallos mix is the best in the list.

When I vote I download all Tracks and don't look which is mine, so I can get another perspective on my mix. Then I find out which is mine.
In this contest it ended up not even close to the top (Of course I don't vote for my mix).

Thanks Daryl for your hard work running this contest.
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Old 05-28-2021, 04:09 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jansen View Post
...It is music without make-up, without what you would
expect from a professional recording, as if the band was with you in the
room, late in the night. I realize now that I'm writing this that I have
been chasing this sound probably because - alert: psychological shortcut! -
what I treasure most in human relations is sincerity and simplicity. I
realize now that this song is the sound translation of the human values that
are the most precious to me...
I appreciate this level/style of reflection. That's a great way to put it -
"...the sound translation of the human values..." I feel similarly about
mixing/making music. I also tend to like the dry thing, that 'in the room with
you' style...
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Old 05-28-2021, 04:29 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jansen View Post
Which brings me to my second point: I'm always very interested in the comments and then I always listen to the different mixes while reading everyone's comments to 'hear what y'all hear' - very educational.
Ah, there's a part of my education I didn't realize I've been missing until now! I always look to read what other people hear in my mix but I never thought to go listen to what other people heard in other peoples' mixes. Great idea. Thanks.
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Old 05-28-2021, 10:37 PM   #36
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You're welcome Dex! Listing all the comments from each voter is also very useful since it gives you everyone's perpective.

And Daryl: thanks for these wonderful options, it's a very cleverly-designed website.
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