Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Their Mix Is Better Than Yours

This Is Why Your Mix Sounds Strange When You Use A Virtual Drum Instrument

Something I've heard time and again throughout the years is this:

Dude: Hey check out my new song I just finished
Me: Clicks link, youtube pops up and starts to play dudes song
Me: Spends next 3 minutes trying to think of a nice way to tell dude that the mix sucks.
Me: Dude, so yeah the song isn't bad but I see that you used Ezdrummer, which is fine but presents a
problem in that the drums sound way better than the rest of your mix. Toontrack spent thousands of hours and who knows how much money in their own professional studios, creating those drum sounds. They're pretty much perfect soooo... you need to match that with the rest of your mix or it ends up sounding like a Ferrari driving across a dirt road full of potholes. The Ferrari is awesome but everything around it is trash.
Dude: Screw you man

The above scenario not only happens quite often, but absolutely ruins your song and is a dead give-away that you moused in those quads and triplets in the drum track.

A great analogy to this would be that if you recorded your own drum kit, the mix you ended up with would be the same across all the instruments because you recorded and mixed them all. However, when you use something like Ezdrummer, Superior Drummer, or any other pro drum VSTI, the drum mix is instantly professional and close to perfect. So when you record your guitars, vocals, etc. You need to mix to match the drums. You cannot get a great all around mix if it sounds like two different engineers mixed the track without ever listening to each others mixes.

The video below illustrates my point nicely by using audio samples to contrast the two scenarios.

By now you're probably thinking "ok, but I'm not that good at mixing yet, so what do I do?"
Keep at it, you get better every time you mix. Utilize resources like Mixcraft University which quickly teaches functionality of the daw.
Watch videos full of tips and tricks, read blogs that give it to you straight, like this one.
Here's a video series on recording, mixing and mastering an entire song.

Join forums, facebook groups and talk to professionals wherever you can.

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