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3 Simple Solutions to Your Sucky Sounds

There are three types of recording problems that are most common.

Luckily, they are easy to fix if you know where to look or what to do.

Problem #1 – Bad From the Source

You have to start from the source. If you don’t even like the instrument as it sounds in the room, it’s never going to sound .

A few years back I observed a fellow engineering student record an electric guitar amp. He quickly threw up the mics and started recording without even a second thought to how it sounded.

I politely asked him if that was the sound he wanted.

His response?

“Oh…it doesn’t sound great, but I’ll fix it later. I’m more of a fix it later in the mix type o’ guy.”

What an idiot.

I mean sure, you can do a helluva lot to a sound during mixing, but wouldn’t it be easier to spend 2 minutes trying to get a sound before hitting record?

If you don’t like the source sound, try to change it. Move it around the room, change the settings of the amplifier. Make adjustments to the instrument until it sounds good before you even bring in a microphone.

Problem #2 – Bad In Your DAW

Does your instrument sound great in the room but sucks in your DAW?

It all has to do with your microphone.

Mic selection.

Mic position.

Mic technique.

Just like you move the instrument around in a room to get a better sound, you also move the microphone. The sweet spot of the cone is a good spot to start but it’s not always the sound you’re looking for.

Use the right mic for the job, in the right position to pick up the right

It’s really as simple as that.

Problem #3 – Bad In the Mix

Even if you’ve gotten a great sounding instrument translating well into your DAW, you still want a little more out of it.

80% of the work has been done, but you just want to sprinkle it with glitter.

Put the cherry on top.

Give it some makeup.

That’s when you pull out your processors.

EQ, compression, delay and reverb.

EQ makes it fit better. Compression makes it sit better.

Delay and reverb makes it really come to life.

Problems Solved?

Those are the three solutions to your sucky sounds. Whether your problems are recording or mixing related, that’s how you fix them.

Make your sounds suck a little less with the Strategies bundle. Both of my ebooks with a $10 discount.


Here’s what James had to say about the Strategies bundle:

First off I love the books. Very easy and fast to read and understand. I usually start to read books on how to do this and that but get confused or bored because they get too full of themselves. I found these two techniques really helpful:

1) Super double tracking really intrigued me because up to now I have always done the straight double track. With the SDT it really gives it much more depth and soul. That was in the recording book.

2) In the mixing book. “What’s driving the mix” was an eye opener. I never really looked at the songs that way and now pay a little more attention to what I could be adding (or taking away) to drive my mixes better.

Isn’t that an awesome compliment! That’s just two of the hundreds of tips I share in the Strategies bundle.

If you want to rack up a ton of easy tips for your next session, it’s all in here:

Image by: Gamma Man

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About me

About Björgvin Benediktsson

I’m Björgvin Benediktsson. I’m a musician, audio engineer and best-selling author. I help musicians and producers make a greater impact with their music by teaching them how to produce and engineer themselves. I’ve taught thousands of up and coming home studio producers such as yourself how to make an impact with their music through Audio Issues since 2011.

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