How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

How to do this, that and the other. Share, learn, teach. How did X do that? How can I sound like Y?
Maesag
KVRer
11 posts since 20 Apr, 2017

Post Mon Feb 12, 2018 6:42 pm

Can anyone please help me, i'm looking for the best way to mix clean kick that cuts through the 808 in a mix. Trap preferred any tips relating to trap composition is accepted.

User avatar
e@rs
KVRAF
3770 posts since 15 Dec, 2011 from Bucharest, Romania

Re: How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

Post Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:59 am

WTF's a 808? A bass derived from the classic drum machine subby kick?

If so, sidechain compression might help. Or a dedicated plugin like VolumeShaper or LFOTool.

User avatar
BertKoor
KVRAF
10785 posts since 8 Mar, 2005 from Utrecht, Holland

Re: How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

Post Tue Feb 13, 2018 7:12 am

You could combine clean with dirty, to let the contrast work in your advance.

So make the (kick of, or the whole) TR-808 lofi with some distortion, sculpt away the lowest and highest frequencies with EQ. That way you have made room in the spectrum for a really clean kick.

Does that make sense?
We are the KVR collective. Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated. Image
My MusicCalc is back online!!

Maesag
KVRer
11 posts since 20 Apr, 2017

Re: How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

Post Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:37 am

e@rs wrote: If so, sidechain compression might help. Or a dedicated plugin like VolumeShaper or LFOTool.
I've tried using Compression Sidechain but i'm struggling with the post-volume of my mix with the 808. :cry:

imrae
KVRist
456 posts since 2 Jul, 2010

Re: How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

Post Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:41 am

Put away that sidechain until you've tried EQ. Make sure the parts don't have the same fundamental frequency. Say we want the subs from the 808 with a crispy kick on top: cut some subs from the kick with a high-pass filter, maybe even with a slight resonant bump around the kick fundamental. Cut away that frequency from the 808 with an EQ bell. Push back any 808 highs with a gently low shelf or filter. Boost the kick "click" if necessary around 2-4 kHz.

If you wanted a deep kick and a more melodic 808, swap around the low-end treatments.

PurpleSunray
KVRian
820 posts since 13 Mar, 2012

Re: How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

Post Thu Feb 15, 2018 5:09 am

- Don't use kickdrum samples
Use a drumsynth such a BassISM, Drumatic ot whatever.
Something where you can tune start/end-frequency, decay len & co.
Makes it waaaay easier to fune-tune the kickdrum so that it sounds good with the bass, than if you work with pre-rendered samples.

- Side-chain
Bass needs to go out of the way when kickdrum hits, otherwise you get low-frequency soup.
Most use a side-chain compressor for it.
I use a volume shaper (LFOTool) because it allows to me actually draw a curve, rather than just fiddling with threshold/ratio/attack/release button.

- Saturate with bassline
Before sending the signal to the master, bass and kickrum are pre-mixed and then staturation is applies on booth, kick+bass, not bass only. e.g. my bassline setup looks like:

Code: Select all

[Bass Synth] [EQ] [High-pass] [LFOTool]  -|
[Kick synth] [EQ] ------------------------+---[PSP Vintage Warmer] [EQ] --> Master

Kinh
KVRian
1146 posts since 26 Aug, 2012

Re: How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

Post Sun Feb 18, 2018 4:57 am

PurpleSunray wrote:- Don't use kickdrum samples
Use a drumsynth such a BassISM, Drumatic ot whatever.
Something where you can tune start/end-frequency, decay len & co.
Makes it waaaay easier to fune-tune the kickdrum so that it sounds good with the bass, than if you work with pre-rendered samples.

- Side-chain
Bass needs to go out of the way when kickdrum hits, otherwise you get low-frequency soup.
Most use a side-chain compressor for it.
I use a volume shaper (LFOTool) because it allows to me actually draw a curve, rather than just fiddling with threshold/ratio/attack/release button.

- Saturate with bassline
Before sending the signal to the master, bass and kickrum are pre-mixed and then staturation is applies on booth, kick+bass, not bass only. e.g. my bassline setup looks like:

Code: Select all

[Bass Synth] [EQ] [High-pass] [LFOTool]  -|
[Kick synth] [EQ] ------------------------+---[PSP Vintage Warmer] [EQ] --> Master
you dont eff'n need a drum synth

jordonpmusic
KVRist
30 posts since 18 Jan, 2018

Re: How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

Post Mon Feb 19, 2018 4:43 am

Few tips from me that helped me along the way:

The bass is normally always lower in volume than you think it should be. In most modern/electronic music, most of the sub comes from the kick.

The 'sound' (or harmonics) of the bass is generated from the 200-350hz frequency. If you can feel the bass but can't hear you may want to boost this area.

When mixing kick and bass, you know you have it right when the bass sounds like an extension of the kick.

Despite how people feel about this topic it's my opinion that for a kick and bass to work properly the kick needs to be in key with the root note of the bass. You can get a 'clean' mix if it's not'. But you can't get that awesome warn fuzzy feeling unless it's pitched correctly.
My latest release 'News to Me' features at #4 on Traxsource Essential Garage charts: https://www.traxsource.com/title/924594/january-29th

TIMT
KVRian
632 posts since 8 Mar, 2009

Re: How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

Post Mon Feb 19, 2018 7:28 am

Trap has mega short kick drums,that's part of the reason why they sit the way they do in the mix.on average from the tracks i've had to reference they are usually no longer than about 70ms (that's all the way to the release)the other thing that makes them poke through is soft clipping,final piece of the puzzle is just brutal sidechaining or setting a bit of attack on the amp envelope of your sub/harmonic sub thing

Pretty much everything bar the kick and sub sits 1-2 octaves above them sometimes even more,on top of that there is also a lot of highpassing (which sort of isn't necessary if things are sitting 2 octaves above your lower arrangement elements)
I

MrMagneto
KVRist
460 posts since 6 Nov, 2010

Re: How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

Post Fri Feb 23, 2018 4:02 am

Calling a distorted sine wave a "808" ...can't believe we've come this far.

User avatar
e@rs
KVRAF
3770 posts since 15 Dec, 2011 from Bucharest, Romania

Re: How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

Post Fri Feb 23, 2018 6:19 am

^ :tu: Yeah, and by the way things are evolving, more 'surprises' are on the way... :scared:

MrMagneto
KVRist
460 posts since 6 Nov, 2010

Re: How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

Post Fri Feb 23, 2018 12:18 pm

Please don't tell me EDM will stand for something else but "electronic dance music" one day!

User avatar
e@rs
KVRAF
3770 posts since 15 Dec, 2011 from Bucharest, Romania

Re: How to Mix 808s and Kick properly

Post Sat Feb 24, 2018 12:52 am

D is not for Dance, it's for Dumb.

Return to “Production Techniques”