MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - Winners announced

How to do this, that and the other. Share, learn, teach. How did X do that? How can I sound like Y?
Compyfox
KVRAF
14279 posts since 19 Oct, 2003 from Berlin, Germany

Post Sat Oct 29, 2016 6:59 am

Real Life is always something that can't be predicted. With that said, let's move on to Round 2. The feedback should roll in the next days - so please watch this spot.


And please... we need new material to mix - please get in touch!
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actioncat
KVRist
112 posts since 19 Dec, 2014 from Philadelphia PA, US

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - in evaluation

Post Wed Nov 02, 2016 4:56 pm

Ok, after lots of listening and re-listening over the past few days, here is my feedback and picks for round 2.

MW Audio:
Firstly there's that crackling noise you can hear during the quieter parts of the track... I assume you were going for a vinyl noise type sound, but sorry to say it just doesn't sound like vinyl. That's a very tricky sound to achieve digitally IMO.
I like the highpassed sound of the strings at first, but I'd have liked to hear the filter open up a bit once the song gets going.
The piano sounds very nice for the main riff, but for the solo it's a bit too much reverb, at least at the beginning with the faster notes, once there's more space between notes it sounds good.
The sample of the second brass sound cuts off suddenly, I used reverb and delay to try to smooth that out in my original mix, but here it sounds pretty dry and you can here the sudden cut.

NightPolymath:
Starts off nice, the reverb on the opening voice sample is a little less subtle than I'd like but sounds good. Drums sound good, kick sounds a little cleaner and snare crisper than what I did with them. Bass is just a little too quiet though, and the piano sounds too dry, especially for the parts where it's mostly by itself.
Overall the mix seems a bit too conservative with use of FX, especially compared to all that reverb on the opening sample.

Mementus:
I like the sound of your drums, but I don't think it sounds quite right for this track. Also the toms seem to be missing completely.
The compression seems a bit heavy, there's a couple places where you can hear some distortion on the bass and kick. The saturation on the piano at the end doesn't work for me either, but I did like how you faded it out to end with the clean delay tail.

Shroom Feverish:
I like the heavier bass and drums in this one. Kick sounds cool, I like the bigger feel, but also that makes it a little too rough sounding.
Piano sounds good, I like what you did with it alot. That spot at 2:28 with the delay on the hats was very cool too.
There's gaps between notes in the drum fill at 0:48 (and 3:46), I figure that was always there, but now it's audible as a side effect of the heavier drums.

VasDim:
I like how the drums sound, but I don't think it works with the track, too much reverb on the snare, and the toms are too booming. Hats sound good though.
The voice sample though is just how I'd like it, yours is probably my favorite handling it.
I think the strings sound a little muddy, and the piano sounds good, but is mostly buried under the other sounds during the main riff.

Photonic:
Really like this mix. I like what you did with the kick... I picked that sample cause I wanted something raw sounding, but it sounds great tightened up.
I also like the part where you fade the drums out, that was very cool.
And I especially like the ending, that's exactly the sort of thing I wanted there but didn't go for it all the way myself for whatever reason.
The FX on the opening sample I didn't like so much though, I'd like something a bit more subtle. But I did like how you effected only the second voice, that was cool. And I liked what you did with drums during that part, that was a good idea.

Camsr:
Really like the drums, they sound super tight. Snare is crisp, toms were brought out nicely, kick sounds good cleaned up.
Bass sounds a bit fuzzy though at times. Also I'd have liked some (more?) reverb on the piano and brass.

Kevin Gobin:
Nice clean mix, drums sound good, piano has a nice amount of reverb.
The only issue I really have with it is a few levels are a bit off from where I'd like: toms, ride, and brass.

Dave McIsaac:
Drums sounds nice, levels are good and not too much or too little reverb (too much or little reverb being my most common issue it seems).
I liked removing the drums from the intro, I think maybe I should've done that myself the first time around.
As I've said for a few others though, I didn't like the fx on the opening sample so much, though I see you had the same idea as Photonic, effecting only the second voice, which is cool. I'm not opposed to FX on that sample but I'd like something more subtle.

thiagoam88:
Nice mix, filtering the drums a 1:59 sounded very cool, great for the transition.
I like that you cleaned up the kick, but the tone of it wound up being a bit further from what I had in mind than I would have liked.
Piano strings and brass all have nice amounts reverb.
The ending is too abrupt though, I want it to ring out.

Bibibeatgrid:
I really like the creative liberties you took with the track, I liked your "pingels and pongles" haha, pleasantly surprised.
The bass FX are pretty cool, but I don't like it for the whole track. I'd like to see it stop after the first drum fill, then be brought back for a pingel here and a pongel there thru the rest (look you did with your cute descriptions) to emphasize certain bars, but not steadily thru any other part, it gets the bass tone too far from what I want in the track.
That high pitched sound at 0:31 is very cool, I like that alot. I like the reverb on the piano solo towards the end. And I really like your reverse reverbs (or whatever they are) on some drum hits.
But with all the FX you did add, the ending piano part is pretty dry sounding, and that's somewhere I'd want a lot of reverb (or whatever else you might want to do) to help it fill the space without the other sounds.

Erictracks:
That opening reverb sounds awesome, great touch. The delay on the piano is pretty cool too, but most of the piano parts without it sound a bit dry, I would like to hear more reverb on them.
The phase/flange on the transition to the middle part is cool, but I wasn't really feeling the way the strings there sounded. I like that you wanted them to sound different though.
Also the delays (at 3:05 and 3:13 or so) are very cool, but the first is a bit too jarring (maybe a bit loud), and the second could be a little louder or maybe go on longer.

Fender19:
I like the approach you used, bringing out detail and not wanting to soak everything in reverb. However I think the piano could use a touch more, and the hats actually have a bit too much. The rest of the drums sound nice though.
Dipping the string level during certain parts was a good idea. I thought it was repetitive too, but I could only get 4 usable seconds from the source material (a radio play, so there was talking over most of it), so I was happy to hear you address that in your mix.

Piranha81:
I like the delay on the Piano, and nice amounts of reverb throughout, but it sounds like the bass has it's lower frequencies cut out, and I don't like that so much.
Drums sound good, and I like what you did with the voice sample, I just left that dry originally, but a little reverb sounds nice.

Par9 Zalpov:
whoaaa intense! The drums sound huuuge, and that's awesome, but for this track it's just a bit much. I like that you waited till after the intro sample to bring them in though.
I like what you did with the piano alot, but during the solo a couple spots get too loud and a little distorted.
There's way too much reverb on the strings and brass, the middle part with the cut up string sample gets really muddy.
Also I can hardly hear the bass, maybe you were going for the "felt not heard" style, but I'd rather hear it, personally.
The ending is really nice though, I love the delay on the drums and the reverb on the other sounds as the piano fades out.


Compyfox:
Great mix, I love the mutes, they were done very well. I also liked emphasizing the roughness and even making some things sound "older". I used that noisy kick cause that's the sort of sound I had in mind.
Bass sounds nice, I like that it's not pushed down too much into the mix.
I like the delay on the piano a lot too.
The only things I'd want to change: I'd like the piano to be just slightly louder, and to add more reverb to it at the end when it's playing by itself.


Davias:
I do like the direction you went in with this, I like heavy drums alot, but really the drums and bass tone are too far from the sound I wanted.
The drums might have worked like this if it wasn't for all the fills, the snare gets pretty muddy during those.
And it sounds like maybe you were trying to get the bass sounding more like an upright, which IS the sound I had in mind, but the bass is the one synthesized element to this track, and that seems like a pretty difficult task, and like this it loses the fullness i wanted.
And not related to your mix, but now that you mention it, Xploding Plastix was definitely an influence on this track, though I didn't realize it at the time... That track Funnybones & Lazylegs made a pretty big impression on me as a kid.

Pitta:
I definitely appreciate you putting your personal touches in, I had hoped people would be creative with the mix, but I'm just not feeling the bass like that, it gets away from the hip-hop sound.
What I really do like like though, is the delay on the end of the piano solo, the extra sharpness on the cuts in the middle section (like that part ALOT), the reverse reverbs, and the crush/saturation on the drums is cool too, but I think it doesn't work so well in a couple places (after the middle section, I don't like how it's still there during the drum fill).
Mostly I really like what you've done, but the bass is the main problem I have with it.

So there you go, I hope I don't seem too critical... I wanted to keep things short, so some of these might seem more negative than my actual feelings on the mix. And some of these might not be very helpful.
But I really liked hearing all the different ideas and approaches you guys brought to my track, great work all around :phones:

For my picks for round 2, I chose 3 with creativity in mind, 3 with mix quality in mind, and the 7th could be either (or both).
Here they are:

Photonic
Camsr
Dave McIsaac
Bibibeatgrid
Erictracks
Compyfox
Pitta

Compyfox
KVRAF
14279 posts since 19 Oct, 2003 from Berlin, Germany

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - Mix Round 2 until 08-11-2016, 11:59pm CET/GMT+1

Post Wed Nov 02, 2016 6:53 pm

Thank you for the detailed feedback, actioncat.

With that said, let's kick off "Mix Round 2", which will end on Tuesday, 08th November at 11:59pm CET/GMT+1

The following participants go into Round 2 (alphabetical order):
Bibibeatgrid
Camsr
Compyfox
Dave McIsaac
Erictracks
Photonic
Pitta


Thank you for your participation, and good luck for the next round. :tu:
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Compyfox
KVRAF
14279 posts since 19 Oct, 2003 from Berlin, Germany

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - in evaluation

Post Wed Nov 02, 2016 7:01 pm

actioncat wrote:Compyfox:
Great mix, I love the mutes, they were done very well. I also liked emphasizing the roughness and even making some things sound "older". I used that noisy kick cause that's the sort of sound I had in mind.
Bass sounds nice, I like that it's not pushed down too much into the mix.
I like the delay on the piano a lot too.
The only things I'd want to change: I'd like the piano to be just slightly louder, and to add more reverb to it at the end when it's playing by itself.
Thanks for the feedback and selecting me for Round 2.

Regarding the changes:
1) I can make the piano a bit louder and add more reverb in the end
2) is it okay to raise the intro speech sample a bit volume weise? I think they need to be set off a tad more
2) after listening to my production a couple of times, I find it a bit dull - read: it misses the "fairy dust", I'd like to fix that (don't worry, will be subtle).

Anything else I should address?

You seem to like the "older sounds". Pretty much all of the tracks were run through a "virtual MPC60" to roughen them up, the strings were even degraded (with a wobble) on purpose.. you don't hear it, but it adds to the general feeling. The idea was to create a "limited mix" that came straight out of an MPC, run through an old console with just 3-4 send busses, then everything is being recorded to tape.

I also like the "more boxy" kick drum. In fact, I did phase invert the sub-kick just to let it fit better. Which resulted in this general low end - more "feeling" than "hearing". And I hope the "creative add-on" of a vinyl record did add to the whole "illusion" (feeling) part as well.

Like I said, vocals on top of that would have been nice (as contrast to the slightly "dull-on-purpose" mix). But who knows what will happen in the future. :)
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Pitta
KVRer
13 posts since 17 Apr, 2016 from Lisboa, Portugal

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - Mix Round 2 until 08-11-2016, 11:59pm CET/GMT+1

Post Fri Nov 04, 2016 5:02 am

Thanks ActionCat, for the input and opportunity.

Working on that bass! It's hard to make it audible on small speakers, cos it hasn't much information on mids and highs, without changing it's character somehow. But I see that I've completely changed it envelope wise. It should be more like a fingered double bass and not a hard bowed one like I did, right?
The drum fill after the middle section returned to his more tamed state. I was enjoying the contrast and blend it was doing with the more lo-fi cymbal that goes into the more hi-fi arpegio piano section. Still works.
You're ok with the limp drums on Intro? They're sidechain gated to the vocals.
Anything you would like me to address please let me know and I'll do my best.

Saúde!
Pitta

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photonic
KVRian
532 posts since 5 Mar, 2011 from Austria

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - Mix Round 2 until 08-11-2016, 11:59pm CET/GMT+1

Post Fri Nov 04, 2016 5:56 am

Hello ActionCat,

Thank you very much to put me in the second round! I reduced the amount of FX of the sample in the begin, as you mentioned. I hope it is better now!

MP3: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/717 ... %20Rd2.mp3
WAV: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/717 ... %20Rd2.wav
soundcloud.com/photonic-1

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actioncat
KVRist
112 posts since 19 Dec, 2014 from Philadelphia PA, US

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - Mix Round 2 until 08-11-2016, 11:59pm CET/GMT+1

Post Fri Nov 04, 2016 6:07 pm

Compyfox:
1) Sounds good :phones:
2) Sure.
3) Dust away! I think you have a good idea of what I want for this track, I trust you to do something I'll be happy with.

As far as anything else... the piano was the only issue I had with your mix, and the only other thing I might like to hear would be some more personal touches or creative FX, which I think is covered under fairy dust :ud:

I did like the "older sounds" approach, virtual MPC was a cool idea and the vinyl noise came out well, it's something I like the sound of, but find tricky to get right without actually sampling a record player.

Oh and I really liked how you went into detail about your process with pics and everything.


Pitta:
Sure! Thanks for the cool mix :phones:

ahhh right, audible bass on small speakers, that makes sense. I didn't consider small speakers at all when making this track, so don't feel that you have to.
But yeah, fingered double bass is exactly right. At the time I didn't have any good samples for that so that's the one part of this track that is synthesized.

The drum part I was talking about is the fill at 3:06 where the bitcrush comes in 2 seconds before, just so we're talking about the same thing (I just realized I didn't put a time in my original feedback like I did for the others whenever I mentioned a specific part of the track). And yes I am okay with the drums in the intro (sidechained gated to the vocals, wouldn't have thought of that).

And for anything else... Listening again now, maybe a little bit more reverb on the piano would be nice.

Cheers!


Photonic:
Sure, you deserved it!

Yup, like it better now :tu:

camsr
KVRAF
6920 posts since 17 Feb, 2005

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - Mix Round 2 until 08-11-2016, 11:59pm CET/GMT+1

Post Fri Nov 04, 2016 11:34 pm

mp3: http://www.webfilehost.com/?mode=viewupload&id=3024875
wav available on request

Added a reverb send, it was rather dry before but I hate the idea of digging through all my IRs to find the right one, so I guess I was being lazy. Tweaked a few faders also, and toned down the treble buzz on the bass. I didn't do much "creative" mixing so I hope it sounds good.
Image

Davias
KVRian
763 posts since 3 Apr, 2013 from Belgium

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - in evaluation

Post Sat Nov 05, 2016 5:18 am

actioncat wrote: Davias:
I do like the direction you went in with this, I like heavy drums alot, but really the drums and bass tone are too far from the sound I wanted.
The drums might have worked like this if it wasn't for all the fills, the snare gets pretty muddy during those.
And it sounds like maybe you were trying to get the bass sounding more like an upright, which IS the sound I had in mind, but the bass is the one synthesized element to this track, and that seems like a pretty difficult task, and like this it loses the fullness i wanted.
And not related to your mix, but now that you mention it, Xploding Plastix was definitely an influence on this track, though I didn't realize it at the time... That track Funnybones & Lazylegs made a pretty big impression on me as a kid.
Thanks for your review ^^
I don't understand, I listen to it again and to me the snare seems clear... maybe I should test with a different soundsystem/headphones :)
For the bass I'll remember to definitly put more weight next time, seems all mixes mixes have lighty bass these days, dunno why :P
And indeed Funnybones & Lazylegs is a masterpiece ;) glad I felt that in the track ^^

Good luck for those who reached round 2 ! ;)

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davemcisaac
KVRist
61 posts since 10 Jul, 2010 from United States

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - in evaluation

Post Sun Nov 06, 2016 6:21 pm

actioncat wrote: Dave McIsaac:
Drums sounds nice, levels are good and not too much or too little reverb (too much or little reverb being my most common issue it seems).
I liked removing the drums from the intro, I think maybe I should've done that myself the first time around.
As I've said for a few others though, I didn't like the fx on the opening sample so much, though I see you had the same idea as Photonic, effecting only the second voice, which is cool. I'm not opposed to FX on that sample but I'd like something more subtle.
I can certainly adjust the FX on the 2nd voice. Is that really all that you would like changed?
Dave McIsaac

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davemcisaac
KVRist
61 posts since 10 Jul, 2010 from United States

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - Mix Round 2 until 08-11-2016, 11:59pm CET/GMT+1

Post Mon Nov 07, 2016 2:46 pm

Hi actioncat,

I made the FX more subtle on the 2nd voice - hope that's more to your liking. My natural instinct was go all sci-fi as soon as I heard "I am tomorrow..." It was hard to get the idea out of my head! :lol:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B0O6oz ... sp=sharing

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B0O6oz ... sp=sharing
Dave McIsaac

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erictracks
KVRist
80 posts since 5 Feb, 2015 from northern va

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - Mix Round 2 until 08-11-2016, 11:59pm CET/GMT+1

Post Mon Nov 07, 2016 6:55 pm

actioncat thank you for the feedback. I tweaked reverbs, and think there is a bit more depth to the track, especially on the piano as you mentioned. Also addressed the fx levels.

All the entries sound so good btw.

wav:
http://erictracks.com/wp-content/upload ... tracks.wav

mp3:
http://erictracks.com/wp-content/upload ... tracks.mp3

Compyfox
KVRAF
14279 posts since 19 Oct, 2003 from Berlin, Germany

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - Mix Round 2 until 08-11-2016, 11:59pm CET/GMT+1

Post Tue Nov 08, 2016 5:55 am

All right - here is my edit for Mix Round 2.
I hope to have addressed the main request, though I did add some "subtle supportive creativity" at the final minute. I hope you'll enjoy it.


Here is my updated entry:

WAV: http://studio-compyfox.de/guestartist/k ... mpyfox.wav
MP3: http://studio-compyfox.de/guestartist/k ... mpyfox.mp3


And here is a "variant" of my entry, with the beat section muted at the beginning. I actually like that version, but it also feels like that something "missing". Which is why I post it as "variant" and MP3 only.

MP3: http://studio-compyfox.de/guestartist/k ... mpyfox.mp3


To those that are interested in the notes I did at various points in time of the mix...

Code: Select all

0:00	-	Start of Project
0:16	-	Initial Setup, some random plugins, no Gain Staging
1:08	-	Setup of MPC60 -> Trident Console, Piano from Siemens V76 -> Trident -> Tape 15ips
		Initial minimal volume settings
1:30	-	artificial vinyl noise, whol eproject LPF 18kHz @24dB/Oct
2:47	-	first mix attempts (EQ setup, reverb/delay setup), Vinyl Noise moved
4:18	-	Mix is pretty much done, unsure on the tape machine - but I'll keep it there
4:45	-	final quick automation done
4:55	-	rendered out

Mix Round 2:

6:00	-	changed vol settings (piano, Vox, trumpet)
		added more lowend to snare drum, spread it out minimally (+/-2 off center from 100)
		added reverb automation to piano
		added panning randomization to glitched strings
		added "fairy dust" (parallel EQ, high shelf from 8,2kHz up - wide Q)
		added new "beat mute" automization
6:13	-	rendered out

Good luck to all participants
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Pitta
KVRer
13 posts since 17 Apr, 2016 from Lisboa, Portugal

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - Mix Round 2 until 08-11-2016, 11:59pm CET/GMT+1

Post Tue Nov 08, 2016 12:54 pm

Hi folks

The bass is of course the main change, a little bit more reverb on piano (a little more pre delay and slightly shorter so I could push it a bit without loosing it's front position) and gave some more love to some details. Hope you enjoy it. I'm liking it better :wink:

https://soundcloud.com/user-487069577/m ... ix/s-DiKQr

https://www.dropbox.com/s/zp6a9hcj4cupm ... x.wav?dl=0

https://www.dropbox.com/s/hy919hqz7pq93 ... x.mp3?dl=0

Good luck
Cheers

Pitta

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Bibibeatgrid
KVRer
9 posts since 21 Jan, 2011

Re: MIX CHALLENGE - MC26 October 2016 - in evaluation

Post Tue Nov 08, 2016 2:09 pm

actioncat wrote: Bibibeatgrid:
I really like the creative liberties you took with the track, I liked your "pingels and pongles" haha, pleasantly surprised.
The bass FX are pretty cool, but I don't like it for the whole track. I'd like to see it stop after the first drum fill, then be brought back for a pingel here and a pongel there thru the rest (look you did with your cute descriptions) to emphasize certain bars, but not steadily thru any other part, it gets the bass tone too far from what I want in the track.
That high pitched sound at 0:31 is very cool, I like that alot. I like the reverb on the piano solo towards the end. And I really like your reverse reverbs (or whatever they are) on some drum hits.
But with all the FX you did add, the ending piano part is pretty dry sounding, and that's somewhere I'd want a lot of reverb (or whatever else you might want to do) to help it fill the space without the other sounds.
Here is my new Mix Round 2:

MP3:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/364 ... Round2.mp3

WAV:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/364 ... Round2.wav

cheers
Bianca

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