Beat Detective is designed to help speed up the editing process of drums. It aligns recorded tracks by cutting and nudging regions toward the grid. There is a simple process to follow so that you may do so efficiently and correctly.
Always Duplicate the playlists that you intend to edit before changing anything. This is a universal guideline, preventing you from accidentally losing your clients data. IT’s also best to do a “Save As” on your ProTools Session. and add the suffix BD after the session name.
When you select the area you intend to Beat Detect. the selection must be on an even beat. If it does not start and end on a quarter note, Beat Detective cannot capture selections accurately. It is the best to make your selection while in Grid mode and with your grid value (Next to the transport on your Edit Window) set to quarter notes. If you are working on drums they should be grouped. It’s most effective to work through a song in sections to prevent accidents.
Open Beat Detective (Command+8).
1. REGION SEPARATION
-With the regions still selected, click the Region Seperation Button on the left, then press Capture Selection. Verify that the selection numbers are the same as your selection in Pro Tools.
- Press Analyze. Adjust the sensitivity slider until the analysis points are visible on the drum transients but not in between them. (You can manually add or delete the points by clicking on the transient to add a point or option+click to delete a point)
- Set the trigger pad to 5-10 ms for drums, depending on the skill of the drummer. If the different drum hits are not lining up well, use a larger trigger pad to prevent accidentally cutting the region on top of a transient.
- When, and only when, your analysis points are correct, press Seperate.
2. REGION CONFORM
- Press the Region Conform button on the left. Select the Strength and Exclude within boxes.
- Typical settings for a strength ranges anywhere from 85-100%, depending on the taste of the engineer/producer. A setting of 90% leaves the drums feeling human, but accurate.
-Typical settings for Exclude Within range are from 0-10%. 5-7% is preferred.
3. EDIT SMOOTHING
-Press Edit Smoothing button on the left. Select the option for fill and crossfade. Be sure crossfade length is set to 7ms. With your edited regions still selected, press smooth. This will fill the gaps between edited regions and place crossfades.
- Check the front and back of your selected area to be sure you region cuts are not overlapping or hiding any transients.
- Listen through the entire edited area to check for audible fades, clicks, pops, etc…
4. LATHER, RINSE and REPEAT
Make your next selection and do it again. Always check the first and last notes of your editing sections to fix the editing mistakes often left by Beat Detective.
Share your Beat Detective Tips with us in the comment section.
We are lucky enough to have Auralex as a sponsor at Dark Horse Institute, if you are unfamiliar with Auralex, they are the premier manufacturer of acoustical treatments in the world. Our studios at the Institute have Auralex everywhere you turn. We are also very lucky and grateful to have the President of Auralex, Eric Smith, speak to our students about Auralex, the physics of sound and how to properly uses on a regular basis.
We had the opportunity to ask Eric a few questions for a blog and leapt at the chance.
DHI: How did Auralex come about?
Eric Smith: I was an accomplished drummer from a very young age. Music got me interested in radio and I began working in commercial radio in the late ’70s. At the same time, I began a long career as a mobile and nightclub disc jockey. The problem was that the radio stations and clubs all had bad acoustics, but couldn’t afford proper treatments, of which there were precious few in those days. Being entrepreneurial in nature, I ascertained a need in the marketplace and set out to fill it. That was 1977, which sometimes seems like yesterday and sometimes seems like a million years ago. A lot has changed in the music industry since 1977, but the physics of sound hasn’t. At Auralex, we do our best bend the laws of physics every day.
Auralex President Eric Smith talk to students at Dark Horse Institute in Franklin.
DHI: What is the most common mistake, in your opinion, that professional or home studios make in regards to room treatment?
ES: People put up treatments that only control the mids and highs, but they neglect to implement bass trapping, either at all or not nearly as much as they truly need to attain linear, broadband control. Low frequencies are the most important ones to control, and are the ones that will have the most detrimental effect on your ability to monitor and record accurately, so it’s of paramount importance that they be adequately controlled. The Low-Frequency Paradox™, as I termed it years ago, is that regardless whether you have too much bass in your room or perceive that you don’t have enough, you need bass trapping. It is adaptogenic in nature, which means that regardless whether you have too much bass or too little, trapping will level you out.
With regard to construction, a huge mistake we see far too often is that people try to reinvent the wheel when building their studio, when in fact all they need to do is follow our time-tested instructions, which have been proven to yield quantifiable results that work. Life is a lot simpler for people if they just follow our easy-to-understand diagrams instead of going their own way and substituting different materials.
DHI: Room size and shape aside, what would you recommend for a Home Studio with a small budget to do to improve sound and reflection?
ES: Control early reflections in your control room by putting treatments behind your monitors, on (or suspended from) the ceiling above your mixer or work surface, and on the left and right walls between you and your monitors. Put the strongest bass absorbers you can afford on the middle of the back wall, or, if you can’t afford those, implement stand-mounted absorbers behind your mix position, especially when doing critical work. Treat your vertical corners with bass traps if you can afford to. There are room treatment kits available that incorporate all the products you need to accomplish what I just described. They’re much more affordable than most people think. Plus, the treatments (assuming you choose your manufacturer carefully) will last for years and years, so your investment will be amortized over quite a long period of time. To paraphrase an old advertising adage: Accurate sound doesn’t cost. It pays.
DHI:Auralex appears to be very passionate about teaching the importance of Acoustics with your Acoustics 101 and Auralex University. What advice would you give a student or young engineer on how to approach acoustics?
ES:Thanks for saying so. We work hard to give back and to share all our decades of accumulated knowledge with as many of the next generation of engineers as possible. My advice? The sooner you realize that acoustics is not a black art and does not have to be nearly as technical as many people attempt to make it, the better off you’ll be. I have seen far, far too many people
Blue Sky Studios in Atlanta Georgia
get in the weeds with regard to acoustics, which just makes me shake my head. That’s what happens when they read too many books or, especially, too many online forums, where there is a l-o-t of misinformation. I encourage people to read my ever-expanding publication Real-World Acoustics™, which is full of really practical advice and is super-easy to understand. Read it and Acoustics 101™, which has been called “the best couple dozen pages ever written on studio construction,” and you’ll have an excellent grasp of the concepts that govern proper room acoustics and construction. No fluff, no smoke, no mirrors, no sliderules. Just cut-to-the-chase advice that normal people can easily understand and implement in their own facilities.
DHI: What is one of the most unique spaces you have ever installed Auralex? What is your Favorite (Aside from DHI!)?
ES: We once did a high-end home theater for someone who had a photo he took at the 50 yard line at a famous football game. He asked if we could custom print this image on his acoustical treatments and tile the image around the room, giving the impression that he was at the 50 yard line when he sat in the sweet spot. We did. We also once custom printed treatments for our tradeshow booth so that the booth’s walls looked like they were made of used brick. If you hadn’t touched the cloth image, you wouldn’t have known it wasn’t real used brick. These projects are fun, but some of the most fulfilling ones we do are the charitable ones, for example having to do with facilities for at-risk kids or children’s hospitals. As I said earlier, we’ve been blessed with nearly 40 years of success, so we enjoy paying it forward whenever we can.
My favorite space? The next one!
Thanks Eric for taking the time to speak with us, and we would like to thank you for all your generosity!
For more information on Auralex, Acoustics 101 and Auralex University check out their site at Auralex.com
For more information about DHI request a brochure below!
Being in Nashville it’s easy to get caught up in the studio album trap. But the truth is that there are a lot of careers and jobs outside of the mainstream audio engineering studio jobs. Because of this and because I’m a HUGE horror film buff and composer myself, I wanted to share this side of the industry with you! I’ll share the industry secrets with you, as well as techniques, interviews with professionals working in the industry as well as film score reviews and stories. There is a whole new world in the Film Industry, so let’s discover it!
Did you know for example that with Audio Engineering Experience you can work on Film Sets, in Scoring Stages and as Sound Editors? There are jobs out there that you may never knew existed or dreamed of that you can accomplish with audio engineering experience.
Let’s take a look at a few!
On Set Sound Jobs
A couple “On Site” Sound positions would be Production Sound Mixer, Boom Operator and Utility Sound Technician. These people work on set, are often union and are shoulder to shoulder working with the biggest names in Hollywood.
The Production Sound Mixer is head of the sound department on set, responsible for recording all sound during filming. This involves the choice and deployment of microphones, operation of a sound recording device, and sometimes the mixing of audio signals in real time.
The Boom Operator is an assistant to the Production Sound Mixer, responsible for microphone placement and movement during filming. The Boom Operator uses a boom pole, a long pole made of light aluminum or carbon fiber that allows precise positioning of the microphone above or below the Actors, just out of the camera’s frame. The Boom Operator may also place radio microphones and hidden set microphones. In France, the Boom Operator is called the Perchman.
The utility Sound Technician has a dynamic role in the Sound Department, most typically pulling cables, but often acting as an additional Boom Operator or Mixer when required by complex filming circumstances. Not all films employ a Utility Sound Technician, but the increasing complexities of location sound recording in modern film have made the job more prevalent. This role is sometimes credited as Cable Puller or Python Wrangler.
Post Production Sound
The Sound Designer, or Supervising Sound Editor, is in charge of the post-production sound of a movie. Sometimes this may involve great creative license, and other times it may simply mean working with the Director and Editor to balance the sound to their liking.
The Dialogue Editor is responsible for assembling and editing all the dialog in the soundtrack.
The Sound Editor is responsible for assembling and editing all the sound effects in the soundtrack.
The Re-recording Mixer balances all of the sounds prepared by the dialogue, music and effects editors, and finalizes the films audio track.
The Music Supervisor, or Music Director, works with the Composer, Mixers and Editors to create and integrate the film’s music. In Hollywood a Music Supervisor’s primary responsibility is to act as liaison between the film production and the recording industry, negotiating the use rights for all source music used in a film.
The Composer is responsible for writing the musical score for a film.
The Foley Artist is the person who creates many of the ambient or routine sound effects for a film. Foley Artists have a really fun job. Don’t believe me? Check out the video!
There are a tone of possibilities when it comes to careers in audio. So don’t just limit yourself to studio work, there is a world of possibilities out there!
When it comes to recording vocals, there a lot of things to factor in. Since the voice is the only instrument that can’t be blamed for sounding bad, you have to take extra care with vocalists. From the first timer to the veteran, there are things that you as an engineer or producer can do to get the most out of a vocalist.
Tips for Recording Vocals
- Create a comfortable environment. This means lowering the lights in the booth. You may want to make it possible for a vocalist to put a curtain in front of windows so that they can feel more isolated and alone.
-Add some reverb and delay to their monitor mix. It will make them sound smoother and better, so it will help they really open up.
-If you need louder, more aggressive singing, you can turn down their vocal track or turn up backing vocals and instruments.
-On the contrary, if you need softer vocals, turn up the singers track and turn down any back tracks.
-Keep talking between takes. Especially if they can’t see you, silence will last forever. If you can, leave the talkback on so they can hear you.
-Turn the lights in the control room down, or make it so they can’t see you. Remember that they can’t hear you, and even if you are talking about something unrelated, they may think you are talking about them. This also goes with facial expressions, never give the appearance of unpleasantness or discomfort. Most engineers have a good poker face, work on yours.
-Always give the most info you can on a take. Don’t use one word or short sentences like “Cut.”, “Let’s try that again Again” or “Moving on”. Odds are the vocalist knows what they messed up or need work on. Use phrases like, “That was good. We should try the Second verse again, I know you can nail it.” Stay positive and remember you aren’t their instructor or teacher, so don’t try to give singing advice.
-Smile and keep a pleasant demeanor.
-Let them know it’s ok to take a break when they need it. Don’t ever question a vocalist if they say they need a break. It may sound fine, but they know what their body is doing.
First Time Recording Vocals
First timers are often overwhelmed just being IN the studio let alone being expected to perform for a total stranger that can hear the imperfections and mistakes. Often times a first time recording vocalist can feel as if you are judging them and have little time and patience for their mistakes, therefore putting more strain on their voice and over all attitude. An engineer or producer can have a direct effect on the outcome without even knowing it. But there are a couple things you can do to help a first time recording vocalist.
-Welcome them warmly. Make them feel at home. Be upbeat and excited they are there. The first impression is the biggest. Make every effort to welcome them at the studio door or even in the lobby.
-Show them around the studio. This can make a HUGE difference. Just knowing where you are in a building and what is going on around you can help them relax.
-Offer them a bottle of water. Always have water on hand, both warm and chilled. Warm water is better for vocalists, but after a session or on a break they may prefer the cold. Have honey, sugar and tea on hand as well. Beverages are the one area that a studio shouldn’t lack. Try to stock some soda, coffee and juice as well.
-Don’t rush them into the booth. Prepare enough time before hand for them to get there, settled and warmed up before you ask them to go in the booth.
-Show them everything they need in the booth. Have it set up ahead of time. Show them how far to stand from the mic and how to work the monitoring, if they have access to it.
-Let them do some practicing while you get levels. It’s a very strange sensation to hear yourself singing. Make sure they are comfortable with what they are hearing.
-Be patient. Remember that they have never done this before and will be nervous. Let them know they have control over what they hear and how loud. so they may go back and forth on the levels.
You will have to be extra supportive of First time Vocalists, so never show frustration. Be extremely patient if they are children, it can be really scary for kids.
If you use this tips, you will create a positive environment for your vocalist. Creating a positive atmosphere will ensure that you are doing all you can for them and will result in a more pleasant experience and over all session.
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There are 6 elements to mixing music that engineers and producers follow that make up the mixing process. They are Balance, Frequency Range, Panorama, Dimension, Dynamics and Interest.
Each one of these elements are just as important as the next. It should be noted that each process is important by themselves, but essential when together. Whether in a live environment or recording studio, following these 6 elements can help you achieve the perfect audio mix.
Balance: the volume level relationship between musical elements. This is what the typical image of a audio engineer or producer does. Pushing up volume and pulling it down. This is actually just the beginning of the Process. It is extremely important to have balance in a mix. This is to say that everything appears to be at the same or appropriate level. Many amateurs will either skip over or spend too much time on this element. Some even call a mix done once they finish this step, this is a critical mistake and will only make the following steps more difficult or even impossible.
Frequency Range: having all audible frequencies properly represented. This is a process that requires a keen ear and through understanding of instruments and the way they should sound. EQing is the boosting and cutting of frequencies to achieve the desired sound. One common mistake is to add EQ while recording, but this step is safer and more practical to add in mix down.
Panorama: placing a musical element in the sound field. An easy way to describe this is where does the instrument come from upon playback. Think of listening to a song with headphones and hearing something that appears to go right through your head. This is achieved with panning and creates a stereo mix.
Dimension: adding ambience to a musical element. This is where reverb, delay and other effects are added. In the Music industry this is often described as making a mix wetter. A Dry mix is a mix that is a raw recording without any other effects added. Adding dimension can make the space you are hearing the music in Larger, smaller, more open or confined.
Dynamics: controlling the volume envelope of an individual track or the entire mix. Dynamics is where Compression, Gating and Limiting are added. What this does is keeps all of the sounds at a pleasant and appropriate level. In the instance of a compressor it will act as an autopilot on the volume control. Did you ever hear a song or performance, where one not just rings and seems louder than the others? This is where the compression kicks in to automatically bring that intensity down.
Interest: making the mix special. The best way to describe this is to think of an emotional song. I’ll use, Celine Dion’s “My heart will go on”, since we have all heard it. We add interest by manually controlling swells and volumes to create more of an emotional response. Usually moving into key changes or choruses. Think of the part where she sings the “Near, Far, Where ever you are.” There are subtle things a good engineer or producer can do to make a mix more interesting and emotional. This is often over looked with amateur engineers, due to lack or experience and guidance.
With training and practice, you can learn this valuable skill. Even if you have a home studio, these 6 elements are essential and even missing one can make your mix sound amateur. This however is something you can’t learn through a video, but through hands on practice and guidance you can learn the skills of Award winning producers and engineers.
I recently found a blog post about how to successfully be both a Musician and an Engineer that made me realize we have a ton of interns and students that are both. This can be a blessing and a curse. I am a composer and do everything from write, arrange, perform, mix and master my own works. I have inadvertently discovered ways to do it all while not compromising any of the steps. Here are some of the things I learned.
Don’t wear too many hats
When I sit down to work on my own work, I make sure that I’m going to only cover one area of the creative process. This means, I don’t write and mix in the same sitting. I tend to compose and adjust dynamics as I write. So I don’t want to confuse this with mixing. I will usually create sketches and record these and jot them down. Since my music tends to have many layers, I will add in dynamics as I go to create a cleaner idea. One thing I won’t do is mix it in the same sitting. And I definitely won’t master anything. Each of these processes uses different skills and thought processes, you can feel overwhelmed and not very creative.
Take a Break
I will however do these the same day, what I make a point of doing is get away from the desk for a while. I’ll watch a TV Show, go for a walk, workout or read. Anything but think about music. Then I can come back and work on another part of the process. This gives my mind a chance to switch gears and cleanse my palette so to speak.
Give yourself Deadlines
I always give myself a deadline. Whether completely arbitrary or actual. Be sure to give yourself a realistic amount of time. My albums usually come out in August or September, so I wil be sure to start backwards and mark when I need to have what done. I’ll start by when I need to deliver the masters. When mastering should be done, when mixing should be done, when composition should be done and even add in when I need art and other marketing done.
Use a board to stay Organized
I have a dry erase board on my wall. I mark all the processes I’ve completed and keep accurate notes. A rough idea of this is
Track Name : Time : Number : Comp Complete : Arranged : Mixed : Mastered : Note
It’s not only a great way to keep a running total but also to take your mind of off what needs done. You always know where you stand in the process. I also typically have to hit a Minute Count between 60 and 70 Minutes, So I can tell if I need to add more songs to fill that.
Don’t be too picky
When it comes to musicians or engineers, it’s a hard thing to say “That track is Done” When I check one off I will try to let it sit for as long as possible before returning to it. If time allows I will go back and listen again to see if there is anything I can improve. Odds are if you hit the point to call a track done it will sound better to come back after some time away.
Get a second Opinion
When you have an engineer to bounce things off of it’s easy to get feed back. When you work alone, not so much. I make it a point to play my mixes for not only for another engineer or musician, but I also let my fiance listen to them. She gives me very honest feedback and won’t hear the little nuances unless they stick out like a sore thumb.
Get away from the Music
I found a great way to get away from the studio is to work on building hype for the release. Get very active on Social Media and be sure to keep your fans updated and engaged. I will also make 1 or 2 tracks available as a sneak peek. I also usually have interviews and podcasts to take part in. So find ways to get yourself out of the studio, although don’t stay out too long.
Enjoy all of the processes
This is why we do both. We enjoy writing, performing and recording. So be sure that if you hit a wall, step out, take a walk, read, clean, work out, whatever, and come back in work on another part.
If you have any tips or tricks you would like to share, or would like someone to listen to your tracks, Please feel free to comment below or on our facebook page.
If you have exported any audio on a DAW, you have been asked what Bitrate you would like to export to. What is that and what is the difference?
Bitrate refers to the number of bits—or the amount of data—that are processed over a certain amount of time. In audio, this usually means kilobits per second. For example, the music you buy on iTunes is 256 kilobits per second, meaning there are 256 kilobits of data stored in every second of a song.
How does this effect your final product? It’s much like a photo’s resolution. The larger the resolution the more detail you will see, but the more space it takes up on your computer. The important thing to remember is, that our ears, like our eyes can only accept so much data at once. So using the highest bitrate, or resolution in case of photos, is not really necessary. In the digital age, we are trying to save computer space and make it easier to share files, but this is where Lossless or “Lossy” audio occurs. Think of a pixalated image, if you save it as a lower resolution, you can never get those pixals back.
If you’re listening to your music with a pair of crappy earbuds on your iPod, however, you probably aren’t going to notice a difference between a 128 kbps file and a 320 kbps file, let alone a 320 kbps file and a 1,411 kbps file. Your earbuds are like the shrunken-down version of the image: they’re going to make those imperfections much harder to notice, since they won’t put out as big a range of sound.
This is why iTunes makes their bitrate 256 kbps. You can’t tell the difference and it saves more room for you.
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There seems to be a perception that professional studios, hate the idea of home studios. I suppose this comes from the digital take over of everything else like newspapers, magazines and anything else you can download. The truth is a home studio will never have the budget or flexibility of a professional studio, so there should be no reason for hostility. That’s why most major artists, still prefer recording at professional studios with trained engineers and producers. But there is still incredible value in having a home studio. You would probably be surprised to find out that most professional industry people probably have some variation of a home studio! That is because we have the resources today to work on similar programs and digital effects that we would in the professional studio. Home Studios are not only fun, but a great place to hone your skills for your career.
I often liken home studios to flight simulators. You can practice and perfect how to fly a flight simulator, but I would want a trained pilot flying my plane. I’m a huge aviation nerd as well, I admit I’ve spent hours logging in hours on my virtual 747, but that does not mean I’m ready to hope in the cockpit of a real one. The same goes for an engineer or producer. Just because you can do something on a virtual studio does not mean you can sit behind a Neve or SSL and run it flawlessly.
What I DO love about home studios is that you can have absolutely no idea what you are doing with mixer, mic or compressor and learn exactly how they work. It’s pretty well known that studio time is VERY expensive, even the cheapest in the Nashville area is above $500 a day. A home studio gives you the opportunity to work out the kinks and build your confidence when you do enter a real studio. The most important to a studio is the fact that you can’t physically break a computer generated console, instrument or gear. Just like the many times I’ve crashed my 747 into the ground…
There are some incredible home studios out there, some that might rival the cost of a professional one. I personally helped a gentleman buy over $10,000 in gear, and that was just the first day! I’ve included some cool pictures from some even I am envious of. Take a minute to soak it in. I’ll wait.
I know.. I’m drooling too…
But just how can YOU learn at home.
This is a great place for ear training, just like a musician engineers and producers need to train their ears to hear correctly. Learn what sounds good and how to recreate it. Learn what settings to use on compressors, limiters, EQ… There are a ton of things that can change the way a sound sounds. There are books and online programs where you can learn this. Including Jason Corey’s ”Audio Production and Critical Listening” or Online sites like Smakmypitchup.com
A great place to play with microphone placement and set up for recording is at home! In the good ol days, producers, engineers and musicians had to get creative to achieve a certain effect. This was before the time of plug-ins. We’ve actually posted quite a few blogs illustrating the cool and creative ways to record sound naturally. But this is a great place to try to mic an amp and listen to the different positions and results.
Microphone types and Uses
You can buy a Dynamic and Condenser Mic for under $100 on ebay or other stores, they don’t have to be top of the line, just a way for you to test the difference between the two. A cheap pair is also good to play around with to see how they work and why.
One skill that often gets over looked by most recording students is the practical side of studios and repair. Every engineer should know how to solder and the basics of electrical circuitry. Go out to Radio Shack and get a check soldering iron and some solder. Practice making cables by soldering tips on and even on some cheap circuit boards. This will separate you from the pack. Sure there are stories of engineers and producers out there that just walk in to a job without ever soldering. But the reality of it is, you are going to enter a studio as a peon. Every skill that you have in your bag will come back to put you ahead of the pack. This also opens many other doors with manufacturers and technology firms. Plus you will never fear a bad connector or broken power supply again.
We have done at least 3 DIY acoustic blogs in the past month.
At home is the IDEAL place to play with monitor placement and sound reflection. Try different rooms, go over to a friends house and work in their room. Having knowledge of Acoustics can lead to a huge opportunity. Auralex has great resources available to help you with sound dampening as well.
Taking the time you have at home to learn these skills will give you the skills you need to compete and even stand out. So while you are sitting at home make the most of your time by working on these skills!
Keep an eye out for our first e-book on the topic coming out next month!
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This is a very good question we got on what is the proper music or audio to use to check placement, levels and eq on Studio Monitors. There are a lot of CD’s out there that people use to set up rooms. However if you don’t have the experience using these CD’s they can be tricky. I like the response from Bob Owsinski’s “The Mixing Engineers Handbook“.
“Listen with source material that you know very well. The only way to judge a monitor is to listen to material that you’re very familiar with and have heard in a lot of different environments. This gives you the necessary reference point to adequately judge what you’re listening to. If you don’t have anything that you’ve recorded yourself that you know inside and out, use a favorite CD that you consider to be well recorded. Remember: don’t use MP3’s here! Use only CD’s or a playback system with an even higher quality 24 bit source like a personal digital recorder. That should give you some idea of the frequency response of the system.
One of the things that I learned when writing speaker reviews for EQ Magazine over the course of five years is that you can easily get used to just about any speaker if you use it enough and learn it’s strengths and weaknesses. It also helps to have a solid sonic reference point that you’re sure of to compare the sound with. For instance, if you know how things sound in your car, then adjust your mixes so they work when you play them there. Believe it or not, that’s still a go-to place for many major mixers to reference their work.”
We’ve even heard stories of studio’s running mixes to car systems, you would be surprised how much you will hear wrong with a mix in a car.
One of the biggest puzzles and most frustrating problems Professional and Home studios have is: Where do I put the monitors? In this Awesome Tutorial you can find out why monitors are put where. It is not as complicated as you may think, but it’s also much more important than just putting them anywhere. Here’s a couple tips to remember for optimal monitor placement.
-DO NOT place them on their sides. This is tempting especially if they are very tall. You may see pictures in professional studios (ours included) that they may be. But these are just reference monitors for talkback and non essential elements. The reason being is that speakers are made to be paired for a perfect stereo balance. Putting them on their sides changes where the components of the speakers are located, therefore changing the sound. Not too mention a lot of monitors are designed to support the rest of the mechanism standing up. You may stress certain components and parts causing the life span to decline. There are some manufacturers that design horizontial cabs or even speakers that can be put either way. But most are meant to stand straight up for a reason.
-You and the two speakers should be an equilateral triangle.
-Place the speakers at least 8-12 inches from the wall.
-As tempting as it may be, DO NOT put them in corners.
-Keep them even distance from either side wall. how far depends on the depth of your desk or console.