Old 07-03-2019, 08:21 PM   #1
Stinger
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Default Master vs Mix / Other?

Basic question: Had the attached original song (all me, all Reaper) mastered (my 1st master submittal) by Landr, ($9.99 version)....not happy with it....louder but that's all. Is there a better algorithm / automatic type masterer (is that a word?) out there/ .....any suggestions?

But real big-picture question.....is the mix just not good enough in the first place? All sounds quite pleasing with headphones, but through speakers, though instrumentation sounds good, the vocal, especially solo (single-voice) vocal, separates from music, and every little flaw is accented.

Background: I've been home recording for 1 1/2 years, and just now getting comfortable enough to put some material out there (wherever there is). So I've got much to learn and would not expect any answers too deep in the weeds. Is it worth paying somebody to mix one for me for starters, as sort of a guide, to compare with what I can do myself at this point?

https://www.landr.com/collaborator/r...a-6a21981bac60

Before mastering is here:
https://soundcloud.com/user-23954441...spangled-hills

FYI.... this type of music doesn't get a lot of love on this forum, but this is what I do, so there. Anyway, I'm just looking for technical help, not praise (unless you feel like saying something nice). thanks, Stinger

Last edited by Stinger; 07-04-2019 at 12:31 PM.
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Old 07-04-2019, 06:43 AM   #2
dug dog
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Hi Stinger:


I tried to give a listen but bailed as soon as Landr wanted me to create an account in order to play the track.
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Old 07-04-2019, 10:00 AM   #3
Stinger
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dug dog View Post
Hi Stinger:


I tried to give a listen but bailed as soon as Landr wanted me to create an account in order to play the track.
Yes, the Soundcloud link is here, but it is before mastering. I wanted to post the mastered version, but unfortunately Landr wants you to log in (FYI, if you have a Facebook acct. Landr will connect you instantly).

Anyway, I'm going to try to move the mastered version to Soundcloud and repost. Sorry for the mix-up.....thanks for trying.

https://soundcloud.com/user-23954441...spangled-hills

Last edited by Stinger; 07-04-2019 at 12:29 PM.
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Old 07-04-2019, 11:03 AM   #4
Tiny Tortoise
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Automatic mastering services can be useful if you either already have a good mix and want minimal adjustments, if you simply need a job done real quick, or if you're just looking for a preview, but they're fairly limited as far as taste goes. Usual professional mastering services from a human likely wouldn't get you what you're probably aiming for either tbh. The best place to improve your final output would really be in the mixing stage.

So regarding your mix, my thoughts boil down to:
- Some louder parts are clipping heavily. This should be avoided unless for intentional effect
- Balance is overly warm. you can try a tilt EQ to hear a basic balance that's closer to flat
- Bass/vox could benefit from more dynamic control. This feels more obvious after tilting to a flatter balance
- Vocals have much more presence than the instruments (also more obvious after tilting flatter)
- Vocals and harmonica are too loud compared to the instruments
- Could use some subtle reverb to gel everything together
- Overall mix sounds very monophonic, except for the piano which is actually surprisingly mono-incompatible

Using your source file, here's an example of a balance closer to what you might like to aim for. I used a convoluted heavy-handed processing chain since it's a 2-track source, but essentially tries to address the points listed above.
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1US...a0PTwqMqfxbY7Y
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Old 07-04-2019, 01:59 PM   #5
Stinger
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To Tiny T, thanks a ton.

I suspected, after hearing the Landr master, that my issues were in the mix, and you've confirmed just that......a very helpful confirmation coming from one with obvious experience.

Your itemized breakdown, together with your sample remix, will take me back to the mixing board, armed not only with more educated ears, but with enthusiasm.

You went over and beyond, and I appreciate it. It's exactly the kind of help I was hoping to get in this forum. Stinger
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Old 07-05-2019, 01:52 AM   #6
Tiny Tortoise
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Very happy to help! Honestly though I've still got a long ways to go too, and this kind of mix analysis makes for surprisingly good practice
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