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alexis



Joined: 10/01/03
Posts: 1668
Loc: San Antonio, TX USA
Someone keeps changing my mixes when I'm sleeping
      #1029988 - 23/01/13 04:18 PM
Hello -

This is my first "mix" ever. So, to make it as good as I can, I spend forever listening to the mix, making decisions about what needs to be changed, even taking notes. On multiple sets of speakers!

But ... when I wake up and listen again - someone has gone into Cubase, changed all the balances, EQs, and send levels, done a new mixdown and replaced my .wav file with a new one! It all sounds so different than it did the day before, I can't think of any other explanation!!

(In all seriousness, does this mean I need to stop sooner then night before, before my brain starts playing tricks after being subjected to intense listening for so long? If so ... how do I recognize when that magic tipping point in time is (I'd rather be sleeping if I'm not actually making any progress!)?

Thanks!

--------------------
Alexis -Cubase 6.5.0/SX3.1.1.944, XP SP2, 4GB RAM (1GB not accessible, but used just to balance the computer so it doesn't tip over); Delta 66 in Omni i/O Studio; Motif8; UAD-1


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Ant Gamble
member


Joined: 16/07/02
Posts: 71
Re: Someone keeps changing my mixes when I'm sleeping new [Re: alexis]
      #1029992 - 23/01/13 05:12 PM
Ear fatigue. At the end of a long mixing session, everything will start to sound good, especially if you're monitoring at high volumes.

The next day, with reseted ears.....rubbish.

I tend to nail one track, then match any others to that. That way I know if the latter tracks aren't sounding as good, is because I'm getting tired.


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Jack Ruston



Joined: 21/12/05
Posts: 4426
Re: Someone keeps changing my mixes when I'm sleeping new [Re: alexis]
      #1029994 - 23/01/13 05:16 PM
Yeah that's very common. You need to resist the temptation to fiddle with things late in the day, that sounded good earlier on. Build a solid foundation with your fundamental balance of drums, bass, vocal and any other primary instrument (like guitars in rock for instance) and stick with it. Ride stuff, automate, play with fx etc but resist the urge to go round in circles with your original balance. If you listen in the morning and its wrong, start again. When you feel that temptation it might be a good time to stop and get some perspective.

J

--------------------
www.jackruston.com


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The Elf
active member


Joined: 14/08/01
Posts: 9174
Loc: Sheffield, UK
Re: Someone keeps changing my mixes when I'm sleeping new [Re: alexis]
      #1029997 - 23/01/13 05:22 PM
Yeah, it happens. I never render a mix on the day I work on it. Tomorrow is soon enough and usually a better result.

--------------------
An Eagle for an Emperor, A Kestrel for a Knave.


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Dave B



Joined: 03/04/03
Posts: 5544
Loc: Maidenhead
Re: Someone keeps changing my mixes when I'm sleeping new [Re: alexis]
      #1030080 - 24/01/13 08:14 AM
Reference material. I was fiddling with a work in progress and thinking that it was better than I remembered it being. Needs some work but sounding ok. Wanted to patch in a vocoder in Logic and couldn' remember, so saved it, opened the Lilly Allen song and checked the routing. Back to mine and got the vocoder plugged in. Then noticed that everything else was rather dull sounding. Ah...

Pick something that you know well and after a break, have a short blast of that and see if helps reset your ears.

The other thing that I've done recently is invest in a decent pair of headphones. I had some mixes that I thought sounded ok on my main monitors, lesser headphones and inbuilt iMac speakers, but one listen through the new cans and I zeroed in on why some people had made comments about the drum sound - snare was a little brittle and things generally could be smoother. Once I'd heard it, I could understand my monitors better and can improve on it next time.

--------------------
Veni, Vidi, Aesculi
(I came, I saw, I conkered)


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Matt Houghton
SOS Reviews Editor


Joined: 08/08/07
Posts: 566
Re: Someone keeps changing my mixes when I'm sleeping new [Re: Dave B]
      #1030430 - 25/01/13 04:21 PM
You want to make sure you're monitoring at sensible volumes and take regular breaks. And as others have suggested, spend some time getting used to your monitoring system and build a collection of reference material. Have a read of this article.

--------------------
SOS Reviews Editor


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DC-Choppah



Joined: 20/07/12
Posts: 306
Loc: MD, USA
Re: Someone keeps changing my mixes when I'm sleeping new [Re: alexis]
      #1030496 - 26/01/13 12:16 AM
Your ears are adaptable sensors, not absolute. You need a few references (certain mixes heard from the same system) to keep yourself grounded. Your ears will change with the music. That's what they do.


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Mike Senior
SOS Mix Specialist


Joined: 08/08/03
Posts: 1381
Loc: Cambridge, UK
Re: Someone keeps changing my mixes when I'm sleeping new [Re: DC-Choppah]
      #1030511 - 26/01/13 08:24 AM
My rule is never to sign off a mix after supper. I can't tell you how often that's bailed me out. Although it is complicated a little when I'm so absorbed in what I'm doing that I forget to have supper...



I think this issue might also be the reason why Bruce Swedien always keeps his first rough mix to hand while doing the final mixdown -- it keeps you in touch with your instinctive balances from before you got the chance to overthink them.

--------------------
Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio
A complete mixing method based around the techniques of the world's most famous producers.


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Martin WalkerModerator
Watcher Of The Skies


Joined: 28/02/01
Posts: 17213
Loc: Cornwall, UK
Re: Someone keeps changing my mixes when I'm sleeping new [Re: alexis]
      #1030937 - 28/01/13 10:09 PM
I'm also a great believer in saving regular backups of your mix as you go.

Even if your 'final' mix ends up being the one you love, it can be a very educational experience rendering some of the older ones down to stereo and then importing them into your final multi-track project file - just mute these other imported tracks and so you just hear your final multi-track extragaganza, then solo the imports one at a time to switch instantly between a handful of mixes chronologically to hear the differences between them.

I guarantee you'll find the results fascinating, but potentially time-consuming when you realise that some of your earlier mixes had a few better aspects than the final mix, even though that may be better overall

EDIT - ah, so Bruce Swedien and I have have something in common

Martin

--------------------
YewTreeMagic


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Dynamic Mike



Joined: 31/12/06
Posts: 1841
Re: Someone keeps changing my mixes when I'm sleeping new [Re: alexis]
      #1030953 - 29/01/13 01:09 AM
The long you spend on one mix, the more the benchmark slips. You lose your reference point, it's like the longer you drive on the interstate, the slower 75mph appears to you. It's only when you hit the exit ramp at 65mph that you suddenly get your perspective back. If I overdo it my mixes are always way too bright in the cold light of day.

Drove on the I-10 once. Satnav said 'In 427 miles, keep right'. You must need good memories out in Texas! Still makes me smile.

--------------------
Disclaimer: The views or opinions expressed above do not necessarily reflect those of the poster by the time you read this.


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