Which plugins are on your stereo bus? Why?

How to do this, that and the other. Share, learn, teach. How did X do that? How can I sound like Y?
SoundPorn
KVRian
558 posts since 24 Jul, 2018

Post Thu Mar 07, 2019 6:07 pm

So whats wrong with mixing, then putting Ozone on your master and being done with it?
Deep Purple wrote:
Mon Feb 18, 2019 7:02 pm
legendCNCD wrote:
Mon Feb 18, 2019 5:44 am
NOTHING.

Mix needs to be sounding like a master in all the other ways except volume/limit :)
Exactly the reason I have nothing on my master bus. The only thing I am interested in doing in my DAW is mixing; mastering is something I take to another tool (Ozone in my case).

jochicago
KVRist
389 posts since 26 Feb, 2018

Re: Which plugins are on your stereo bus? Why?

Post Fri Mar 08, 2019 12:22 am

1. Mastering:
Finishing a song and producing a file export for delivery.

2. Mastering:
Sending the mix to a mastering pro for finishing touches and producing an export for delivery.

If you are not doing #2, then whether you add "mastering" to the master bus, or on a separate session, it doesn't matter. You are still just using the same mixer (person) to mix the same project to taste and then export to meet delivery specs. The song is not more "mastered" either way, any approach taken is just a matter of preference.

Personally, I think the real trick is to output all your tracks and buses to a global bus called "mastering". Then you output the "mastering" bus to the 2-bus. But you put all the processing in the "mastering" bus, not the 2-bus. This way, you can stand proud of not using any plugins in the master bus, and still master the song in the same session. When a fellow KVR mixer asks: "what's on your master bus?", you say: "nothing, the 2-bus is for amateurs". Then your friend asks: "how come your song is set to exactly -14lufs?", you say: "oh, is it? I guess I nailed the plugins before the master bus. whatever."

User avatar
V0RT3X
KVRAF
7563 posts since 4 Jul, 2012 from Canada

Re: Which plugins are on your stereo bus? Why?

Post Fri Mar 08, 2019 1:08 am

I don't even bother trying to "master" shit because I know it's a big headache that I don't want to deal with. If i have something worth mastering I'll send it to a professional who does this stuff day in and day out. Honestly I'd rather focus on making music, sound design and mixing.
Sound Experiments -> |https://soundcloud.com/user-841453413|
Join the Anti-EDM movement :borg:

User avatar
Deep Purple
KVRian
783 posts since 9 Jan, 2015 from NY, NY

Re: Which plugins are on your stereo bus? Why?

Post Fri Mar 08, 2019 4:22 am

SoundPorn wrote:
Thu Mar 07, 2019 6:07 pm
So whats wrong with mixing, then putting Ozone on your master and being done with it?
Nothing if that works for you.

Traditionally mixing is done in the studio to get the track to sound the way that the producer and/or artist want it to sound - getting the right sound for each track, setting levels throughout the track, cross-fades, etc. Mastering has traditionally been the act of taking a finished mix and preparing it for the release format (vinyl, CD, download, etc.).

If you master at the same time as mixing down you're trying to perform two different tasks at the same time. Sometimes mastering can make small changes that affect the way the final mix sounds, but if you then go back and make changes to the mix, your mastering will get screwed up, and you enter a loop of back and forth with that. Doing them separately means you get the best mixdown possible before you master.

Mixing your track with the track levels, dynamics and headroom needed for mastering is what you should be working towards as a mixdown engineer. Thinking about mastering at the same time will probably dilute your ability to perform either task as well as you can.
Sweet child in time...

User avatar
pekbro
KVRAF
2410 posts since 29 Sep, 2010 from Maui

Re: Which plugins are on your stereo bus? Why?

Post Fri Mar 08, 2019 4:34 am

Nugen Sigmod is the only plugin I use everytime, for the protection module if nothing else.
I use it for gain staging a lot as well.

Ricky Rocko
KVRer
23 posts since 25 Feb, 2017

Re: Which plugins are on your stereo bus? Why?

Post Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:39 am

1. Waves Abbey Road TG Mastering Chain: using the preamp section for coloration and tone.This is good, so I won´t use so much plugins while mixing. The comp section does the "glue job" at the end.
2. UAD Oxide Tape: only if the coloration of Waves AR TG is not enough, with the needle barely moving on the VU meter.
3. ISOL8: I mix most of the time in mono + I love the bandpass function to check my low mids and mids (200-2000 Hz).
4. SPAN or Mmultianalyzer (if the mix is very busy with a lot of tracks I can see the elements fighting for the same frequency)

Jake_xms3
KVRer
6 posts since 31 Jan, 2019

Re: Which plugins are on your stereo bus? Why?

Post Thu Mar 14, 2019 3:06 am

On my master bus I’ll usually arbitrarily load
Bx Townhouse (bus comp)
Kush Omega 458 (colour /mojo)
Acustica purple (low and high boost)
Acustica Scarlet (subtle eq)
Pro q2 (spectral analyser, surgical eq)
and Ozone (all in one solution, final limiting)

I Might not use them all and the order might change but that’s what I usually load up ready to use.

My master bus goes into a final stereo bus with Sonarworks loaded.

legendCNCD
KVRian
760 posts since 23 Sep, 2004 from there

Re: Which plugins are on your stereo bus? Why?

Post Sat Mar 16, 2019 8:27 am

SoundPorn wrote:
Thu Mar 07, 2019 6:07 pm
So whats wrong with mixing, then putting Ozone on your master and being done with it?
Nothing... kinda. But for my projects, the mastering chain is already taking almost 100% of CPU time, cant use it in realtime while the mix project is running.
Also I like to take time between mix and master sessions...

harveywright1995
KVRer
7 posts since 29 Feb, 2016

Re: Which plugins are on your stereo bus? Why?

Post Mon Mar 18, 2019 7:30 am

The PA Phil's Cascade plugin is beautiful on the master. Real warmth.

Return to “Production Techniques”