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Category Archives for "Workflow"

Joe Barresi On Recording Bass For Tool’s “Fear Inoculum”

Daily Blog - July 23rd 2021

I don't have much time these days, as I'm mixing record after record while working on new things to help you make better records. So I decided to let others speak on the blog for a couple of days. After the community Q&A posts that I just published, I want to share some quotes from amazing engineers and producers that hopefully inspire, educate and/or entertain you!

Joe Barresi On Recording Bass For Tool’s “Fear Inoculum”
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75: The One Engineering And Mixing Skill That Will Give You 80% Of The Results

Balancing - 75: The One Engineering And Mixing Skill That Will Give You 80% Of The Results

There's one thing that we immediately pick out as listeners...

...even if we don't have very trained ears and even if we're not very experienced or familiar with the genre:

We immediately notice when something is way too loud or way too quiet.

And we subconsciously notice when the song doesn't feel right, maybe because it's hard to make out the bass line, or the drum groove is just not hitting hard enough, or there's this weird, buried thing in the background that's distracting us, while something else is jumping out too much.

We might not be able to put it into words, but we definitely notice when there's something wrong with the balance.

So there is one skill that we have to learn and constantly improve as engineers and mixers if we want our music to translate well and deliver all the emotion and energy with minimal distraction: 

Balancing. Simply finding the right levels for every track in every part of the song and every mic on a every source that we record.

Technically it's super simple, but it's also incredibly difficult to get right. If you get it right, however, assuming that your source tones are good, you're 80% there. Without touching an EQ, compressor or effect.

Let's discuss!

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74: Interview Episode With Grammy Nominated Producer And Mix Engineer Jacob Hansen

Jacob Hansen
Jacob Hansen

Jacob Hansen Is Joining Us For This Episode!

Jacob has worked with some of the biggest names in metal and alternative music. He's produced and or mixed records for bands like Volbeat, Amaranthe, The Black Dahlia Murder, Heaven Shall Burn, Evergrey, Fleshgod Apocalypse, Primal Fear and many many more. 

We're getting to pick Jacob's brain and talk about

  • DIY recording
  • getting amazing guitar tones
  • mixing records remotely
  • reamping
  • the most common home studio pitfalls
  • guitar tuning
  • workflow and efficiency
  • communication
  • collaboration best practices
  • the future of (home) recording
  • evertune bridges
  • amp sims and Kempers

among many other things.

Enjoy!

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Different Parts, Different Mics

Different Parts, Different Mics
Daily Blog - July 8th 2021

Who said you should use one microphone for the whole song, let alone the whole record? In fact, there's often a good reason to use different mics for different parts.

Different Parts, Different Mics
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Why Reamping Doesn’t Work With Small Interfaces

Daily Blog - July 1st 2021

This is one of the most common questions we get. People wonder how to reamp with the gear they have. And many of them have one of the popular bus powered portable interfaces. So you want to try reamping with a hardware amp or pedals but all you have is a small 2-channel interface? Read this first!

Why Reamping Doesn’t Work With Small Interfaces
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#72: Speed Writing Challenge: Record A Brand-New Demo After Every Session

#72: Speed Writing Challenge: Record A Brand-New Demo After Every Session

Today we have a challenge for you that will help you learn and grow faster than ever before:

Write a new song each jam. Record what you have at the end of the jam, no matter what. That's right: Schedule your next 5 practice/jam/writing sessions with your band or alone, then write a brand-new song after every session and record a demo version of it. 

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One Song At A Time…

Daily Blog - June 29th 2021

...is a good release strategy, but does it also make sense to work on one song at a time in the production, mixing and mastering process?

One Song At A Time…
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You Gotta Love Your DAW

Daily Blog - June 28th 2021

I don't care which DAW you use. What you use doesn't matter to me. But it definitely matters to you. And you should take that decision seriously.

You Gotta Love Your DAW
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Real-Time Reamping

Daily Blog - June 24th 2021

To me, what I call "real-time reamping" is by far the most efficient and fun way to record guitars with ultimate flexibility and the mix in mind. And because this week's podcast episode is all about reamping, I thought I'd explain one of the concepts from that episode again for you here.

Real-Time Reamping

Here's a step-by-step instruction:

  1. Plug your guitar (or bass) straight into a DI box or Hi-Z input using the shortest possible cable. No pedals in between, the DI is the first and only thing in the chain.
  2. Record that pure DI to a mono track in your DAW and set the output of that track to a physical output on your interface (not your main output! 2-ch Interfaces won't work for this or for reamping in general). So you're not going to hear the clean DI, because the recorded DI leaves the computer immediately through an extra output.
  3. Connect that output to a reamp box 
  4. Connect the reamp box to your amp (and/or pedals), using the shortest possible cable.
  5. Record the cab with a mic / record the amp with a loadbox / record the line out or DI out of your amp. Whatever setup you have.
  6. So this amp signal goes back into the computer to another channel in your DAW and this is what you'll be listening to. Just send the output of the amp channel to your monitor out/main out or your subgroups in the DAW, as usual.
  7. Make sure the buffer size is as low as possible, because latency can be a problem with setup like this. Remember, you're going in -> out -> in again -> and out again to your monitoring. That's four conversions. It's totally possible with most modern interfaces and a solid computer, but maybe not with every setup. You'll have to try and find out.

The advantages of "real time reamping":

  • You're hearing how the amp reacts to the reamping chain right away, as it's always connected to the reamp box, not the guitar directly. So you don't have to adjust and match the signal later, if you're reamping certain parts.
  • You can use your computer as a giant pedal board! Your computer is always in the chain before your amp, so you can use plugins to manipulate the signal you're sending to the amp. Infinite possibilities to correct or creatively shape your tone!
  • You're always recording the highest quality direct signal from your guitar. So you have that safety net in case you don't like the amp tone.
  • You can change and adjust sounds for each part quickly, using reverbs, delays, overdrives etc. in your computer. Just like you would with pedals. You can be quick and intuitive here because, again, you always have that DI as a backup.
  • If you need to change something, it's super easy, quick and fun! So if you recorded a perfect take, but the tone was not quite right for the part, you just hit play, listen, change the settings and reamp immediately without having to perform that part again. The reamp setup is always in front of you ready to go and the tones will be exactly the same, as you're always listening to the reamp chain while playing.

Yes, I know. This is another concept that probably sounds a little confusing at first, but when you make it work and get to try it, you'll love it! It's so much fun!

-Benedikt

PS: If you're looking for an amazing community to get feedback from and provide your own expertise for, check out The Self-Recording Band Community. It's 100% free and can be the growth accelerator you've been missing all the time.

PPS: Downloading one of our free guides and joining our email list is also a great way to connect with your peers, as we will invite you to events and keep you in the loop about what's going on in our community. We just had an amazing video meetup last weekend and together we helped 5 people improve their recordings, arrangements and mixes by listening and giving collective feedback live on the call. Join us now!

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