Yeah, it’s so much fun. It really is fun – not being sarcastic. But when you have a less than ideal room to do your mixing in, it can suck, regardless of how much experience you have.
The pic above, is really old, and kinda sucky, but it describes how I was feeling last night.
So I went over to my friend’s house last night. He’s got a studio in his house too. So I brought over some of my latest mixes, excited to listen to them on his really good studio monitors, and maybe discover some details, or nuances that I could improve in my mix.
I was absolutely horrified at what I heard.
It was all mid-rangey and … just generally terrible sounding. I have good equipment at home, really good monitors, and all that, but I am mixing in a very small room – and very small rooms will lie to you. See the link above for more details on that.
Basically my room eats up bass and does weird things to it. I’ve fixed some of the problems with acoustic treatment, but the bass remains elusive. Sometimes I have to stand at the back of my room to hear it.
So I check out my mixes in my car – which I thought was a great system. But hearing this stuff on my friend’s (significantly larger – borderline not-near-field) monitors, I was amazed at how little low frequency there was. It was pretty mid-rangey – super crazy.
So maybe I need to add more low end back in. Maybe I need to trust my car speakers less.
Maybe – lol – maybe my room isn’t as bad as I think it is – because I am literally mixing out the bass due to what I thought I was hearing in my car.
It’s hard (but not impossible) to mix in a small room. Because without the proper treatment, the room is going to lie to you.
So I’ll do some more mixes, and see what I think. Maybe I will bring those mixes back over and listen again at my friend’s studio.
Whew. Good times. Crazy times.
So – lessons learned?
Well, I don’t know yet. I think I’ve identified a problem, but not yet really determined what the cause was. I’ll update this post when I figure out what it was, then the lesson here should be more clear.
I betcha it’s gonna have something to do with “reference tracks” which lately I’ve been really bad about 🙂