Random Production Thoughts


that’s the berghain thump


Or just a tinny-ass plate reverb on one of the buses with aforementioned LFO bidness.

But regardless of how it was done, does it work for you or…?


I don’t quite get what you mean by bathtub sound, but the ‘hollowness’ to me is the relatively
low volume in the 200hz - 500hz range. With Blawan’s track, add a 6 dB dip at 350hz or so
with a fairly low Q. You’ll notice the track maintains almost all of its energy. In most other
music, a big dip like this in the lower mids will take the punch out.

In a way this could be explained as a loudness trick (smiley face eq). The low and high end
are both emphasized, so the track will appear to sound louder when it’s not actually played that
loud. The lack of low mids also helps makes space for the vocal and those short fx sounds which are processed to be very wide. When there’s no vocal, the track is almost mono, when it comes
back in it widens significantly. It’s likely that he used some mid-side processing for this. You can
do that manually, but a lot compressors (like fabfilter pro-c) have this built in so you can play
around with that.

Hope I understood what you’re talking about. Otherwise none of this will make sense.


Anyone else get really anal about naming their samples, and organising them into folders?
It’s LONG and boring but I can’t not do it.
I’m renaming about 90 synth samples right now…


that’s a really good explanation but only gets you so far imo. there’s a lot more to it although I’m no sound expert so I can’t really say wat exactly


shame its mac only, but this looks p great


I had the demo for a while. It’s really cool. Might get the full version some time.

Just got back from Levitation France and they accompany every performance with projections. 80% of it was video synths this time. Half the time the lights were just distracting
even though they had a really nice Robe rig in the main hall. I think the guys are called
‘The Mustachio Light Show’. Can’t really find any videos that do it justice but made a little gif
to illustrate what they do. The gif conversion fuks up the picture though:



Just copped fab filter pro mb and timeless 2 :gunfinger:


had to finally do it, naively thought i could get away with 96 patch points and have to wait for another one lol


Ok so I learn best when things are visual.
Also all my tracks sound too quiet compared to others, and I have real trouble wrapping my head round compression. In which I believe lies the answer to my problem of things being too quiet.

I can’t push my master volume anymore as I’m going into the red, I’m pulling down track faders to give myself more headroom but it’s still not sounding right. So I’ve creudely drawn this to see if I understand the concept of compression.

1. There’s a big difference in volume between the loud bits and the quiet bits.

2. If I apply compression to every noise getting near the green line (0db for eg) then the compressor will kick in when a noise gets close to the predetermined level. It will then quieten it to another lower predetermined level.
So the loud bits and the quiet bits in are now a more even volume.

3. Therefore, I can now push the volume of that particular sample as the loud bits will not go above the green line.

Hey presto a louder overall sound without redlining the loud bits.
Is that right?
It flattens, or evens out, the sound without compromising on the dynamic range, so it doesn’t muddy the sound?

Free stuff, (plugins, samples, etc.)
Free stuff, (plugins, samples, etc.)

oh, here it is - copy and paste:

I’m no expert on compressors myself, but they usually work with a ratio and a threshold - so after the signal exceeds certain level (threshold) it will get turned down proportionally according to the ratio ie your sound is 4dB above the threshold, you have 2:1 ratio - the signal will be 2dB above the threshold after the compression.
I, haven’t seen any compressor where you can set it to a predetermined output level, that sounds more like a limiter to me.

You’re right that it flattens the sound, but that’s affecting the dynamic range directly. With compression it’s often key to find a right balance between squashed and dynamic.

P.S.: Someone of you nerds feel, free to correct me :badteeth:


That’s my concern. Sacrificing range for volume… I guess it’ll be an arduous journey of trial and error!

I’m slowly understanding it. Thanks for the help


One problem with visual comprehension of audio is that the display you’re seeing doesn’t tell the whole picture: things stand out or fade off in a mix based on more than just volume… try your EQ.

Listen to those visually ‘quieter’ bits and tell me if they’re actually getting washed out or not, and then see if cutting unneeded/competing bands and boosting one or two selectively for peak presence doesn’t do the job better.


It took me ages to be able to get even remotely acceptable loudness, its a long process of learning to hear all the elements in your tunes that are unneccessarily loud, freqs you can EQ out vs those you should leave alone etc

A specific tip that massively helped my mixdowns get full and loud is to funnel all your drums into one bus and compress them together. In most of the music on this site, the loudest element is the drums and by compressing them together you gain that drums bus pretty far and get it loud without going red.

I would definitely not reccommend compressing every element of your track separately. Again, took me fucking ages to appreciate cus thats what I always did before, but by doing this you’re really sucking the life out of the track and making a confusing mess of compression envelopes out of your mix.

edit: also if youre comparing your tracks to actual releases they’ll have mastering on them. Mastering usually adds several dBs and if done well makes can make a track significantly punchier


yeah it’s pretty useless to compare one’s own track to an official release. best IMO is figure out a quick “faux-mastering” trick that’ll just make it louder so you can play it out, give it to djs or whatever and then when maybe a label picks it up you can give it to them and get the full on banging professional sounding tune

either that or learn mixing and mastering properly yourself. it’s possible too


got some new bits to help me in my quest to make the futuristic sounds of yesterday

tascam midistudio 644

profire 2626 (firewire is still the future yeah?)

teensy lc

teensy 3.6

gonna export stems from my main machine, chuck them on my old win7 beast with the firewire interface, then mix loads of takes on the tascam. can’t wait tbh, think it’ll suit my shit well. just hope the tascam doesn’t die soon cos it’s probably overdue given its age…fuck knows how i’m gonna service that shit, the 644 is rare.
asked my electronic engineer m8 and he’s like nooooo fucking way am i touching that.

teensy LC + analogue multiplexer + pots + MX switches = basis for custom controller.
wrote a custom USB type that combines USB MIDI with USB (typing) keyboard. faders, pots, switches, and configurable DAW keyboard shortcuts all on the same unit. fucking right. no more dealing with FL’s shitty keyboard-spanning shortcuts.

teensy 3.6 = basis for custom sampler / wavetable synth / FX unit / soundfont player / so many possibilities. can’t decide whether to build a rack-like unit, or rip apart an old casio keyboard and build a synth with keys.

if all goes to plan i’d like to do commissions for custom controllers.
the software / circuitry side is no big deal. family member runs an embedded software firm and this shit is child’s play to those guys. that means free consultation and bug fixing hopefully.
if i can master CNC i should be able to keep front panel and casing costs down - should be able to do custom devices for a pretty good price that way.

anybody got thoughts on custom controllers? reckon i should price them high and aim for commissions or maybe try and do short runs of “products” like DAW-specific or VST-specific controllers? any ideas / criticism / warnings are welcome.


Nice pick-up on the 644.

I use a tascam 424 on the daily. Sounds like garbage in the best way. Instant vibe


424 mk3 was my dream machine when i was like 13 years old reading guitar magazines all day lol
what’s your workflow? just bounce to tape for some grit and record back to pc or what?
i saw the sweepable mids on the 644 and just knew i had to have it…i’m not expecting it to sound great though


Thanks, I’m getting a lot beter at EQ’ing, overall EQ’ing specifically. I’m still working on selective EQ’ing ie; boosting peaks here and there. And I want to get to grips with a spectral analyser.

I don’t really want to use compression. I’m just confused as to why my track playing in soundcloud/thru my soundsystem needs the volume way up whereas most other tracks need the volume at a much lower level. Compression, from what I’ve read, seems to be the most likely “fix” to the issue.

No just general soundcloud masses.


1st step to a loud track is a good mix, if you have elements fighting with each other they take up a lot of headroom and as a result you can’t push the master as much. Most of the time a simple limiter on the master is enough to get a track reasonably loud.

The tracks you’re listening to might be mixed better and might be professionally mastered, nowadays i don’t think you’ll get there without using compression whatsoever. It’s a great tool, to me it just seems like you’re afraid you might overdo it.

I think the important thing is that you should use compression and other tools when mixing down with a purpose with an idea how you want to affect the sound - sidechaining sub to kicks comes to mind.

anyway, feels like i’m just rambling, hope you pick out something useful from this post :lol_og: