Is Mixing Music Technical or Artistic?

Is Mixing Music Technical or Artistic?

Mixing music can really feel overwhelming to those that haven’t ever tried it. And that is sensible. It entails a lot of instruments and settings and technical stuff. However is mixing additionally a creative endeavor?

The Significance of Each

So is mixing music extra technical or extra inventive? Brief reply: it’s equally each. It’s necessary to know the technical elements of EQ, compression, phasing, and so forth. However as soon as these issues, you may actually get into the artistic aspect of blending music. You can begin doing what you wish to do even when it’s not technically “proper.”

The Technical Elements of Mixing Music

Listed here are the principle technical elements of blending that it’s best to know earlier than you get all artsy with it…


Equalization (AKA EQ) is a must have device for mixing. It principally enables you to management the frequencies in a sound. Right here’s a easy breakdown:

Frequency bands: sound is made up of various frequencies, like high-pitched tones (treble), mid-range tones, and low-pitched tones (bass). EQ divides these frequencies into bands, every representing a particular vary.

Enhance and reduce: utilizing these bands, you may increase (improve) or reduce (lower) the quantity of particular sections of frequencies.

Q Issue: controls the width of the frequency band you’re adjusting. A slender Q focuses on a particular frequency, whereas a wider Q impacts a broader vary.

Excessive-pass and low-pass filters: high-pass filters enable increased frequencies to go by way of, slicing the decrease ones. Helpful to take away undesirable low-frequency rumble. Low-pass filters do the other, letting decrease frequencies go and slicing increased ones. Helpful for taming extreme brightness.

Shaping sound: EQ helps form the general tonal steadiness of your combine. It’s like adjusting the bass and treble in your automotive stereo, however rather more exact.

Fixing points: EQ may help repair issues like muddiness, harshness, or imbalance in a recording. Ideally, good engineering and manufacturing would keep away from these issues. However EQ may help if wanted.

Creating house: EQ is a strong device for carving out house for various devices in a combination. By adjusting the frequencies of every instrument, you can also make positive they complement one another moderately than compete.

Simply keep in mind, whereas EQ is a strong device, it’s necessary to make use of it deliberately. Overdoing it might result in an unnatural or unbalanced sound. A great combine typically entails a fragile steadiness of EQ changes to boost the readability, heat, and character of every ingredient within the music.


Compression helps management the quantity of sounds, making the dynamic vary sound extra balanced. Right here’s a breakdown of compression…

Dynamic vary: you probably have vocals that go from whispering to shouting (AKA dynamic vary), compression may help keep a constant quantity by decreasing the loud components and making the tender components sound extra outstanding.

Assault: a setting determines how shortly the compressor responds to a loud sound. A quick assault catches sudden peaks, whereas a slower assault permits some transients to go by way of earlier than kicking in.

Launch: controls how lengthy it takes for the compressor to cease decreasing the quantity after the loud sound has handed.

Threshold: is the quantity stage at which compression begins to kick in. If the sound goes above this stage, the compressor begins working.

Ratio: determines how a lot the compressor reduces the quantity as soon as the sound exceeds the edge. For instance, a 4:1 ratio means for each 4 dB (decibels) above the edge, the compressor permits just one dB by way of.

Keep in mind, similar to EQ, compression is handiest when used subtly and with a particular goal. An excessive amount of compression could make a combination sound lifeless or unnatural. The objective is to search out the fitting steadiness that enhances the general sound with out sacrificing the dynamics and character of the music.


Phasing in music occurs when two or extra audio alerts which are very comparable in frequency work together with one another in an undesirable approach. This interplay may end up in a phenomenon the place sure frequencies reinforce one another, whereas others cancel out.

If the peaks of 1 wave align with the peaks of one other, they add up and get louder (constructive interference). If the peaks of 1 wave align with the troughs of one other, they cancel one another out (harmful interference).

Section shift occurs when one of many alerts is barely delayed in comparison with the opposite. This delay causes the peaks and troughs of the waves to align. You don’t need this. It might probably result in a skinny or hole sound.

Normally, phasing occurs once you’re recording in stereo with two microphones. And the gap between the microphones can create section points, often within the decrease frequencies.

Should you notice there’s a phasing situation in the course of the mixing course of, you may modify the timing or alignment of the audio alerts with a phase-correcting plugin or doubtlessly by flipping the section of one of many alerts.

The Artistry of Mixing Music

As soon as and are accustomed to the technical elements of blending music, you may discover the artistry of it. It’s important to know the foundations earlier than you may break them.

Making your self really feel one thing

@greazywilmusic #sew with @Beat Kitchen Manufacturing Faculty #mixing #greazywil #music #artist #engineer #producer #mixer #songs ♬ unique sound – GreazyWil

Making music is all about making you are feeling one thing. If it makes you are feeling one thing, it can make different individuals really feel one thing. So for those who method mixing music with this mentality, you’ll be considering extra like an artist. Make mixing strikes as a result of it makes the track extra impactful, even when it doesn’t embody all of the “proper” steps or processes.

“If it sounds good, it’s good”

You’ll have heard individuals say, “If it sounds good, it’s good” or “Simply use your ears.” However the factor is, these phrases are solely useful for people who find themselves accustomed to mixing. Should you’re new to mixing music, these usually are not useful items of recommendation.

First, you have to be taught the technical elements of blending. Then, as soon as the overall idea of blending, the way to use the instruments, and what truly sounds good, you can begin to inform your self, “This sounds good, so I’m not going to mess with it.”

One technique to pace up the method of realizing what sounds good is to make use of reference tracks. That is once you hearken to songs that you simply love which were produced and blended by specialists. By listening to those professionally blended tracks in your personal mixing surroundings, you’ll have a greater concept of the way to make your combine sound good.

In relation to mixing music, it’s all about discovering the intersection of the technical and the artwork. It begins with data and it results in artistry.

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