There’s a good discussion about snare mixing inside the Facebook community that I thought I’d draw your attention to.
Curt was looking for a way to get the thickness out of his snare without adding too much snap to it.
I recently finished a punk rock track where I had fun mixing the snare so I thought I’d share some of the mixing tricks I used in case you need some inspiration.
1. Use a really short, 0.2-second reverb to add depth and thickness without cluttering it up with reverb. Blend the reverb underneath, cut the lows and highs from the reverb and you’ll end up with a bigger sounding snare.
2. A fast attack on a transparent compressor, like a VCA emulation, will dull the snap a bit. VCA’s are pretty clean sounding so they’ll just eat the transient without adding a bunch of character to the sound.
3. Use parallel compression on not just the drum bus but the snare track as well. A really fast attack attack to kill the transient and adds extra thickness.
4. Saturation can help dull the high-mid frequencies. A “warm” tape preset can thicken up the body of the snare while taming the smack.
5. A good ol’ EQ on the high mids to get rid of the attack is always a simple solution.
6. A multi-band compressor targeting the frequency area of the snap ONLY will tame the part that’s annoying you while leaving everything else intact.
Try some of those tricks out in your next mixes. If you have any particular problems that you’d like to crowdsource a solution to, don’t hesitate to ask us inside the Facebook community.
If you’d like even more tips and tricks on using EQ, compression, reverb, delay or saturation then check out my Step By Step Mixing eBook right here: