The MOST Important Lesson in Mixing (Clickbait much?)
Today I’m going to give you the most critical lesson in mixing.
It might not be the most glorious.
It certainly won’t be the most technical.
It’s not even COMPLICATED!
But it is incredibly important.
It’s what everyone does at the start of the mix, but because they’re so eager to rush into EQ’ing, compressing, and adding effects, they just get it over with as soon as possible.
When in fact, you’ll save yourself a massive headache throughout the mixing process if you just spend a little extra time on it.
I’m sure you’ve already guessed what it is, but if you haven’t, I’ll spell it out for you.
It starts with an L
and ends with EVELS
Ta-da! It’s all about balance baby!
And it’s not about spending an extra 20 minutes getting your faders right at the start. You should also be aware of whenever you need to rebalance after adding EQ, compression or effects.
Sure, there is some auto-gain compensation fanciness going on in some plug-ins, and you should always try to gain-stage through your plug-ins correctly, but I find that there’s still a need for rebalancing throughout the mix.
Think of it like tasting your food while you’re cooking. An amateur cook flavors the food once and calls it a day. A chef tastes their food throughout the entire process, adding salt, pepper, and other spices during the whole process to keep the balance of the food correct.
An amateur engineer does the same thing.
They balance the faders once and call it a day. A professional mixing engineer balances and rebalances their mix throughout the entire process as they react to the needs of the song.
That’s why I spend an entire hour inside Mixing With 5 Plug-ins on how to mix with no plug-ins at all.
It’s also one of the things my students find very valuable in the course.
Wyn Evans had this to say about it:
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.
If you need to revisit the fundamentals and learn the importance of balancing your mix correctly, head on over here and join the course.