When I talk to engineers and musicians like yourself, they share a lot of the same struggles you do:
"I struggle with EQ'ing guitars, drums vocals so that everything can be heard distinctly. I want to understand and efficiently implement EQ and compression to get a great mix."
" My biggest issues is getting the snare to cut through the mix without putting too many high frequencies in it, because when I do, the cymbals get in the way and I get terrible bleed...getting the snare sounding consistent but without overcompressing it because [then] it sounds artificial."
"I struggle with skillfully using compression. I just give up when it comes to compressing and vocals."
You probably have similar stories. Once you're done recording you have to make all those tracks fit together in the mix. However, all you get is a muddy mix where the drums take over the bass in the low-end, the guitars sound thin and your vocals are buried underneath the instruments. Because of that, you can't create a clean mix where you can hear all the instruments clearly.
Even worse, if you finally get a decent sound in the studio it'll still sound bad in your car. No matter what you do you can't get your mix to sound the same everywhere.
Let's not forget about the time it takes to mix a whole song. Even if you've gotten so good at mixing that your songs sound good across the board you might still waste a lot of time tweaking the final mix instead of knowing when it's good enough to release.
I'll be the first one to tell you that I understand exactly what you're going through. I've been there and let me tell you my story of struggling with learning to mix.
There was a time I had no idea how to EQ for clarity.
My guitars kept getting in the way of the vocal and my bass guitar regularly clashed with my kick drum. I didn't know how to create separation between any of my instruments! Every time I used an EQ I had no idea how much (or where!) I should boost or cut to make my mix sound better.
If EQ was hard, compression was Expert Level Difficulty!
Every time I tried to compress my drums and bass to make them tighter, I'd end up with a squashed drum sound and a weak low-end. I was never really sure what all the buttons the compressor did, and I certainly didn't know which ones to use to create tight mixes like I heard from other expert engineers.
Sure, presets were handy to start with, but I usually got lost trying to tweak them to suit my mix.
If I finally got a good mix using EQ and compression, I'd derail the entire thing again when I added reverb and dealy.
I'd end up with way too much reverb, making my mixes sound weak and washed out. Then, when I'd return to the mix the next day I'd overcompensate for my mistakes and end up with a mix that sounded two-dimensional and flat.
I honestly didn't understand what to listen for in a mix so I kept randomly putting plug-ins on tracks, tweaking presets that didn't fit the tracks and selecting inappropriate effects that weren't suitable for the song.
Luckily for you, I've come a long way since then, Today my band mates, clients and music friends compliment me on how clean and clear my mixes sound.
They love the fact that they can hear each instrument in the mix.
My kick drum doesn't clash with the bass guitar anymore. Instead, they work together like a well-oiled rhythm machine, keeping the mix clean but thick in the low-end. Even the guitar player and the vocalist have stopped fighting about which instrument should be louder because they can hear themselves equally.
Today, when I add compression to a track, I'm the one in charge, not the compressor. I'm not scared of tweaking the settings anymore. I know what buttons to push to make mixes tight and loud. My drums pack a punch when I need them to hit hard, but they can also lay back if the genre demands it. I've learned to compress each instrument so you can hear everything clearly without the tracks sounding squashed.
Once I've balanced my mix with EQ and tightened it up with compression I now love experimenting with different reverbs and delays. Instead of randomly selecting the wrong reverbs I now have a system in place.
The system helps me choose the best way to add the right space to a mix. Throughout the years I've amassed a huge bag of tricks for using reverb and delay to create depth in my mixes without them ever feeling too washed out.
Lastly, I spent a lot of time experimenting with different saturation plug-ins to get the best results. Not every saturation plug-in fits with every track so through trial and error I discovered when and where to use the right style of saturation to bring my mixes to the next level.
Put simply; I'm proud of the mixes I release today. I can clearly hear the improvements I've made throughout the years, but the best part of it is:
That's really where you want to be. If you want to get to that level, it's clear as day what you need to do to improve your mixes.
Newsflash: it's not buying another expensive plug-in (as much fun as they are to play with...)
Nope. It's learning how to use the tools you already have to get a great mix.
When you know how to use the tools you already have you not only save money from all those plug-ins you won't need to buy, but you also save time by knowing exactly how to fix your mixing problems.
When you know instinctively how to get rid of muddiness and a flabby low-end you'll crank out mixes much faster than if you were playing with a new plug-in every day.
You'll feel like a virtuoso musician that can jam with everybody in any genre, except in this case, you'll be mixing those musicians together to make them sound amazing.
And with enough songs in your portfolio you'll start getting paid work from bands that like your mixes. At that point it pays to work fast and know how exactly how to transform their rough recordings into polished mixes. The better you understand how these five fundamental mixing processors work, the faster you'll create great mixes and make more money from the.
It's exactly how I started getting paid, and there's no reason you can't do the same.
Even if audio isn't your main job right now you still need to know how to make good mixes, even if it's just in your spare time.
In case you don't know me, I'm Björgvin Benediktsson and I've been working in the audio industry since 2006. I started out doing live sound back home in my native Iceland, but since then I've transitioned into recording and producing. First in Madrid, Spain, where I went to audio engineering school, and today I make a nice side income from producing locals bands in Tucson, Arizona.
Throughout the years I've learned a lot about mixing, and if there's one thing I truly love doing it's teaching musicians and engineers like yourself how to make a bigger impact with your music. I've taught thousands of up and coming home studio musicians and engineers through Audio Issues since 2011.
I used to suck at mixing. I wanted it to be this fun and cool thing but it was just intimidating. I didn't know any better so I kept randomly slapping plug-ins on every track, and shrugging my shoulders because I couldn't figure out how anything worked.
I had much of the same problems as you do. My mixes sounded boomy in the low-end, the drums sounded boxy and my overall mix balance was always either too harsh or too muddy.
Put simply, my mixes sounded unprofessional and amateurish.
The reason why was simple. I had no plan of action, and no concrete steps to make my mixes sound like I wanted.
Years later, after countless hours of trial and error, I finally know what I'm doing and it always comes back to these basic five processors you already have in your DAW.
Ask any mixing engineer what processors they use most often and what do you think they'll say?
Yep, that's right:
It's time for you to stop chasing the legendary pot of plug-ins at the end of the rainbow and learn a workflow that teaches you to master the five essential processors to great sounding mixes.
You don't need to read boring manuals, waste time on forums or buy more gear to make your next mix sound fantastic.
That's the great part! I've already spent hours of my time learning everything you need to know so I can give you the shortcuts you need to become a better mixing engineer in less time.
Master the Five Processors You Need to Make Amazing Mixes
In five days you'll learn exactly how to use these five plug-ins to transform your demos into professional sounding productions.
See what other engineers and musicians have said:
"I realized that all you need is basically only these 5 plug-ins"
"I found this course to be detailed, relevant, and very practical - and quite a bit of fun. Specifically, I found each of the feedback videos comprehensive and balanced, each of the tutorial videos were engaging and detailed, yet it was not "preachy" as "this is the only way to" I learned the difference between EQ'ing for balance and cohesion and EQ'ing for color and dimension. The visual component of seeing the specific instrument's frequency range really helps nail problem areas more efficiently. Also, this course has changed (and simplified) the way I set up a session. The idea is great. You explain a little bit of why you use the plugin and what the overall goal is. Then you do it"live and then explain what you have done. I realized that all you need is basically only these 5 plug-ins."
"I learned...how to deal with "bad" frequencies"
"I learned a lot from [the] mixing without plug-ins part. Making groups and dealing only with the volume knobs was nice preparation before the mix. The EQ part was very good because I learned some techniques on how to deal with "bad" frequencies."
"Overall, I really enjoyed the course. I think for me the most valuable thing was seeing your screen and watching your thought process visually. I have read mixing textbooks in the past and the information is simply too dense to be all that useful. In particular, the "Mixing with no plug-ins" video was extremely helpful. I realized that many of my major mixing woes were caused by poor organization and skipping over fundamentals. I've been mixing for a while as a hobby and in that time have picked up many bad habits, and this course definitely helped me re-learn the habits that make for better mixes. I really enjoyed the course. I personally didn't really want to use the song that you were mixing and instead opted for applying the techniques I learned from the videos to my own mix. I would certainly recommend this course to anyone who is starting out on their mixing journey as well as folks like me who have been mixing for a while but haven't learned good fundamentals. I probably wouldn't recommend it to someone looking for a "deep dive" into the art of mixing, because it covers the basics and doesn't go super-duper in depth, but overall I am very satisfied with my purchase. Thanks so much for doing what you do, Björgvin!"
As soon as you sign up we get started with one of the most basic (but overlooked) lessons in mixing:
Critical listening and knowing where you're taking the song before you ever start mixing it.
The first module is all about setting up and prepping your tracks for mixing.
After our initial balancing work we'll get into using EQ to make all the instruments fit together.
We'll cover subjects such as:
After EQ'ing we'll put a compressor on every track and find the best setting for each instrument.
You'll learn tricks like:
If you only use EQ and compression you'll end up with a flat mix. Using reverb and delay is the key to giving your mixes depth without overpowering and cluttering up your mix.
At the end we'll add some saturation to spice up your mixes.
In addition, we'll rebalance the whole mix, check our mix on multiple speakers and add some automation so that everything plays nicely together.
As soon as you sign up you get access to the Mixing With No-Plugins video, the Quickstart Guide and all the multi-tracks inside the members area. Every day after that for the next 5 days you'll get a new video to watch and use that knowledge to improve your mix. Then, after a week, you should have all the knowledge necessary to create amazing mixes using only five plug-ins.
Not at all. You can follow the course using whatever DAW you're most comfortable with. I'll be using Logic Pro but all of the mixing techniques I show you can be done with any DAW.
You can certainly search for videos teaching you each individual plug-in, but no video will tie all of the plug-ins together like this to show you how to use all five of them to create great mixes. Instead, you'll end up wading through poorly explained techniques and watching a bunch of ads.
That's understandable. You've got a lot going on. However, if you can spare an hour a day for the next week imagine how much time you'll save in the future being able to easily mix song after song for your clients using the five plug-ins method I teach you in the course..
Mixing With 5 Plug-ins is my flagship course. It's VERY in-depth and comprehensive. It's not just a quick video explaining what mixing is. Mixing With 5 Plug-ins is much more than that. I don't just mix. I also explain everything about each plug-in and go much more in-depth into the theory and practice of mixing in general.
Mixing With 5 Plug-ins includes much more information about how to use EQ, compression, reverb, delay and saturation in any of your mixes, not just the one we're working on in the course.
Once you're a member you'll always have access to the videos and the members area. Inside the members area you'll be able to both stream and download the videos as well.
Not at all. You can use any EQ, compressor, reverb, delay and saturation plug-ins you have available. I use a combination of a few plug-ins which you probably have a similar version of. However, none of them are crucial for success in this course or to get a great sounding mix.
This course includes all the information I've learned from 11 years of mixing music. I guarantee that it will teach you how to improve your mixes exponentially.
That said, if you don't think Mixing With 5 Plug-ins taught you anything and you just didn't like the course at all for any reason, simply email me and I'll refund your entire order. If you're not happy, I'm not happy.
This is a beginner to intermediate course. It'll teach you to get the most out of EQ, compression, reverb, delay and saturation so all you need after that is consistent mixing practice (which is also included).
I won't teach you to import the mix session (just drag and drop audio usually works btw...) or tell you what a fader or a pan knob is. I assume you know at least that much.
But I will condense all of my experience with mixing that I've learned in the last decade. If you're a beginner I will bring you to a more advanced level. If you're already familiar with mixing I'll still take your intermediate skills and build upon them, giving you advanced techniques to improve your mixes..
The track that's used in the course is a rock track but in every video, I explain in detail about every processor (EQ, compression, saturation, reverb and delay) and give you the knowledge needed to use those plug-ins on any instrument in any genre.
"Thanks Björgvin for this experience"
I decided to watch the video step by step which is some kind of copying what has already been done but so I could follow each of the decisions in detail track by track - pausing the video, experimenting with sweeping etc. and do some tweaking here and there. I would strongly recommend this approach because I had some really strongs moments when I heard the first time what the problem at certain instruments and a special frequency really was. It's like a completely different hearing of a track. It's like you're not listening to the instrument anymore - you're listening for ringing and annoying disturbing noises that are in the background of an instrument - hard to explain but you will get there I'm sure... So thanks Björgvin for this experience.
5 Day Course + Free Bonuses
5 Day Course + Free Bonuses
($50 Discount When Paid in Full)
Everything Plus Personal Mixing
As always, everything I put out is backed by my 100% Money-Back-Guarantee.
If you are not satisfied with your purchase, let me know and I will happily refund your money, no questions asked. You can even keep the course for a full year while you decide.
If you’re not happy, I’m not happy.
Check Out What These Other Past Members Have Said.
"I think the results sound huge."
Mix is up - and this one was really a lot of fun. After rewatching parts of the video, I decided to take a simpler approach to avoid automation - just to see how it worked. I think the results sound huge. Overall, I mostly used the EMT Plate by UA; however, I did add a TAL Smooth Plate on the lead vox, and a beat synced delay (Metric Halo Dirty Delay) timed to 1/64 on the left, and 1/8 on the right, with some added drive for more gain. Seemed to thicken up. Hope you like it.
I learned to simplify; up until now, when I would organize and setup a session in my DAW, I would create FX busses for every individual track, and separate sub-mixes for each group on top of the busses. So, for a drum kit, each piece would have it's own FX buss, all feeding to a buss for the entire kit (or most of it) that would then feed a single Drum kit submix; at the end I'd use these various submixes for mixing into my Master Buss. With this, I kept it simple, and followed the pattern from the video - combining more instruments to fewer busses in total. I think I still ended up with one or two more than the video, but that's a vast difference for me!
Having fun with this! I tend to make things complicated quickly, so I appreciate being forced to keep it simple. Thanks!
"Impressed by your fluent equalizations and how you tackle those jumping out loud frequencies."
I've often read about setting levels <<in context>> rather than in solo but never really got it. In this respect, I found this quite ear-opening.
"Björgvin, your ears are unbelievable!"
Than you for sharing your experience to improve my work :)
All you gotta do is click the pick button below and then pick your payment package.
Once you finish the checkout process you'll be emailed your log-in information to access the members area.
At that point the only thing left to do is to start making better mixes than you've ever made, using only the five plug-ins you already have in your DAW!
"Looking forward to seeing you in there!”