manwilde wrote:Based on what you say it seems the problem might be related to playback software outside the DAW. I´d bypass the Beats Audio first (don´t know what that is, some kind of "enhancer"?).
What happens if you play a commercial release through your media players?.
I think this is the key, did you try it, Hippie 162?
Look at the main volume gain of your PC, (you say you don't use any external hardware) I mean in the audio settings of the PC, not Cubase, see the levels of the speakers and...
See if when you open Cubase and when you mixdown, and when you playback the exported files the gain levels in the audio settings are the same. Maybe the software Beats Audio you quoted above changes some settings and you said that something is changed when the software is disabled. When you use Cubase it usually overrides the settings of other audio softwares because Cubase takes exclusive control of the audio of your system with the selected Asio driver and then your third party softwareBeats Audio is likely disabled and when you shut Cubase is enabled again and can change your audio settings.
To override this behavior of Cubase you can also try in the settings of windows, click sound, device properties, un-check the box “Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device".
So I concentrated on what the others were saying about gain staging last night, I started with a fresh project and imported some of the original audio files.. set the pre gains of all channels and busses to -10db to start off with, no plug ins whatsoever.... I then did a test mixdown , it started really quiet, then faded to a louder volume, stayed consistent for a few seconds, then fluctuated volume again
At least it wasn't ear popping loud this time though although it was still definately much louder in the mixdown than it was in Cubase.. So I am still scratching my head.
I did actually check the audio PC levels, they were set to 100% - too much??
I completely uninstalled Beats audio as I couldn't figure out how to find the driver itself I am hoping that has done the trick although no different outcome as yet.
One other point to add.. while I was doing my initial mix, I would playback while mixing, then I noticed that my PC had been recording audio layered over my tracks from my PC mic! There was the odd bit off conversation on the track.. really odd as I had not pressed record?? I deleted the events where this happened and have disabled the PC mic and muted all input busses.
I have actually bought my laptop into work today as it id doing my head in so much. So on my break I will put the soundcloud link to last nights test mixdown for you all.
ONE other question (sorry): WhenI initially mixed down my audio tracks individually from my first session, I did NO gain staging at all.. I am pretty sure they would have been peaking as that session was loud and some faders were turned up even due to my novice rusty brain thinking it was blending the mix.... SO.. do you guys think this could have caused the issues? Should I go back into that original session and completely start over by doing a mixdown on each track again BUT gain stage them first, OR can gain staging the tracks in this new session sort the issue?
Sorry for all the questions, this has all moved on from how I worked before and I consider myself a total newbie nowadays.