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Its true that lumping everything into the center is going to

give you a more muddy sounding mix than doing some


panning, especially when you have two sounds occupying the
same frequency range, panning helps a huge amount here to
get a clearer sound because it helps the frequencies not to be
fighting one another as much. The crowding muddy effect
really is only present when you have 2 sounds occupying the
same frequency range playing at the same time.

To overcome the "Crowding effect" with a bassline and a


kickdrum sidechain compression is used, so the very low end
of the bass quickly drops away when the kick hits then comes
back - this way you can have the bass and the kick drums
panned centre and you dont have them fighting one another.

As for your 5.1 question. 5.1 recordings contain multiple


channels while a stereo recording only contains 2 channels. If
you play a 5.1 recording on a 2 channel system your only
going to hear the left and right channels - that is of course
unless you mix the other channels into the stereo signal.

Lemme just say that way to many clubs still have mono or
mono sum systems

I never go more that 70% pan on sounds... I think of panning


just like actors on stage, the more important to the plot they
are the more center stage they have to be...
I use HPF on almost all sounds except on BassDrum, sidechain
on bassline is a must ...
No panning on BD ans Bass all the rest gets panned... I use a
simple rule, similar sounds get opposite panning... not only u
get more space in the mix but it also sounds more intrigging
and attention catching to your ears... you can do preatty
minimal stuff without sounding like a total LOOP just by
cleverly using pan!!

jus my 2 cents,

another thing some clubs are so big that if you use to much
pan the people standing next to the right speaker only get
about "half" of yer music message.
5.1. to me only makes sense with effects like verb, delays ans
stuff, even with EDM center stage makes sense unless you
really tame down all other channels to introduce only one
sound to one of the channels... hummm how can I explain
better!??
with 2 or 2.1 you can get a long with even 2 different guitar
riffs, one on each side, but mre than thing it would feel like
standing in the middle of an argument with 5 people talking at
the same time ... to much info! IMHO!

exemple open and closed hats, crash, ride cymbals... all


similar-ish sounds ... I believe it is harder for a speaker to
reproduce two similar sounds with similar energy and content
than to have each side reproduce more of one than then other,
... surely the reproduction is more detailed and efficient, as
result sounds should be clearly defined in a mix with out
having to increase volume, tweak eqs and other trickery to
make'em come apart from each other ... so they become
easily percieved.

I generally produce at very low level and most of the time at


night, never had any neighbor complaints (and yes my
neighbors are bellow 70 years old lol). This as the
consequence of you needing to have a very defined mix, with
eq and panning, otherwise the only way to make something
stand out it to increase its volume, and that won't fly at 3am...

It took me some time to get used to it and curb my


enthusiams but it's also easier to be tricked if you produce at
considerably high levels... than there's the ear fatigue even
after very few hours and the Fletcher-munson sensibility
curves bla bla bla...

The key to good productions is to have all the sounds sit in


their own frequency range without much overlapping - don't
play 2 sounds at the same frequency or its going to sound
muddy. Cant stress this enough !

Lets take dnb for example, when artists are layering snares
together they wont layer 2 snares that both sit on 300hz -
with the second snare thats being layered will have the 300hz
peak filtered/EQed.
This has a huge impact on the quality of a production and
results in much tighter sounding mixes.

Bento... I'm with ya 100% but what I mean was similar


sounds, not the same sound ... so many tracks use open HAts,
rides, shakers at the same time ... of course it is unwise to
have it all on the space (pan) with same frequen. (eq) and
energy (comp/ side-chain)...

another example of what I meant... if I have to Claps, say a


909 and an RZ-55 I would pan them to different sides (of
course with different eq. settings aswell).

Something else that really helps in panning and I do this with


my basslines to control the frequency ranges separately.

1. First choose your synth a load your patch. A wobble


perhaps.

2. Route the synth to your mixer and turn its bus off to the
master channel. (We will assume we are starting with mixer
channel 1)

3. now bus the synth out to 3 more channels that you will
name Lo, Mid, Hi and turn off their master bus' (except for Lo)
and place an eq in each. Rolling Lo off (Lowpass) at 100hz,
Mid 100hz to 300hz (this can be done to taste), and Hi 300hz
(Highpass).
** the frequencies you will choose for your song may differ.

4. Now bus the Mid channel to two more channels which will
be named "Left" panned 50% to the left and "Right" panned
50% to the right.

5. Repeat this for the Hi channel, but panning the Hard "Left"
and Hard "Right".

6. The channels you will want routed into the master channel
channel (getting sound from) should now be Lo , Both Left
Channels and Both Right Channels.

now what you should be left with is a wall of sound from your
bass synth. You can add in various effects no in each
frequency range like distortion, chorus.
I personally like adding a CamelPhat VST onto the Mid with
some rhythmic distortions and a CamelSpace VST onto the Hi
bus to give spacial effects.

I apologize if I may not be clear enough and for the lack of


visual aids. I will keep an eye out for youtube vids for this
technique and add them later.

hit me up if you have questions.

Basically you go from audio theory... ooops ... ok short way


around lol ... Every sound is a "pulp of different frequencies"
(except for the so called Pure tone aka Sine Wave).. so the
most preeminent one is the one which best sums it up ...
hence it's PITCH.

Example : imagine you have a t-shirt in green with a couples


of letters sayin Traktor Rocks in Red and Blue... you could say
that your t-shirt has the colors red, blue and green, but if U
had to say what color it was, you would obviously say it's
green, 'cause it's by far it's most present and dominating one!

Now insert an eq. on the channel you need to find the sound's
Pitch...
on the eq set one of it's bands to be as narrow as possible
(TURN DOWN YOUR MONITORS), turn all the other ones off,
now boost that narrow band to the max!!!
sweep it slowly from the lowest (probably 20hz) to the highest
(prob. 20KHz)... where t distorts / resonates the most is it's
Pitch...

so basically and in sum, if a sounds pitch is "...the loudest


voice in a certain room..." then if you could selectively boost
by the same amount each voices one by one in turns, the one
which stands out the most would be your pitch...

Hope this is what you want ...

PS - If it's a sample you can always you it's analise/ Statistics


or what ever name is called the feature that can tell ya all
about that sample (Peak, DC offset, Rms, Pitch, etc...)

That technique I read in a book called "The Remixers Bible"


available at amazon.com of course.

although when I started out I only bussed out two frequencies


and I had some what no clue on what frequencies to bus or
where to set em.

The I sat down with Downlink (


http://www.myspace.com/downlinkdub ) and we talked shop
for sometime.

When I pulled that trick out he graciously skooled me on


proper frequency range.

approx 100hz and be below (sub bass) you want to keep mono
because bass is mono. If you start panning it and end up
having your stuff pressed to vinyl this will cause the need to
jump from the grooves.

roll shit off below 30hz because pretty much all systems;
unless you get on one of those audiophile nutz system will not
reproduce sound below 30hz. if they do it will more likley be
more of a rumble and mud.
you will notice they eq in reason just has a 30hz cut button.

above 100hz to "I forget" is mid bass

Exactly stated before is look up tutorials on eq mixing ranges,


theory etc...

PS : to have a look at what your sound are doing in FL Studio


the Parametric Eq2 is a great one, as well as wave candy.

or there is a VST call smexiscope . very handy!

That all depends on where your kick drum is sitting in the


frequency range.

for me I like to route all my instrument to their own channels


and channel groups.

ie ... kicks would look something like this...

kck1(ch1) kck2(ch2) kck3(ch3) ----> KCK(ch4)


I do the same for snares....

snr1(ch5) snr2(ch6) snr3(ch8) ----> SNR(ch9)

then I would route the group to its own bus

KCK (ch4) SNR(ch9) ---> DRM KT(ch10)

allowing me singular and over all control of my drum kit

then when I do my bassline (may consist of multiple synth) I


route that all to its own channels.
I do not always do the routing as above. It really just comes
down to what you are trying to accomplish.

The technique I explained above works really well for Electro


house basslines, DnB Reese, Dubstep wobbles etc...

If you are wondering where you route your side chain to. That
is up to you and the effect you want. You can route it to just
the LO channel on the bass, the MID, HI or the who Synth
Buss. You could even have it on a vocal track. Even to multiple
channels which I have lots of fun doing.

here is an example I tossed together

Not trying To be a wise as* or anything but as far as I know


your safest but would be To have all content bellow 150hz as
MONO. For several reasons;
Sound becomes omnidirection bellow 150hz (a not just 100hz,
some people evn state that is bellow 170hz, some people
make it mono bellow 250hz just In case). So if you ears can
tell where it's coming from there is no sense In having any
panning.

A mono Sound is always punchyer and beter defined... Is you


get punched very hard one time just after de other you
basically only feel the first punch cause. But if get punched In
the left and right side of yer face exactly at The same time
your face gets crushed In The middle... Luckily Im not talking
by personal Experience here lol.
Mono Bass is crucial for Vinyl pressing and again Bass Punch
and definition (you can get away with it on CDS but Bass will
always Sound a little funny and wimpy)

Btw jus like you cut belos 30hz on yer master you can also cut
abouve 18500hz or 19000 if you really wanna Play it safe. If
you do a small boost around this cut point your doing more or
less the vintage pultec eq effect.