All mono

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I’m on a return flight from Los Angeles where I was recording some live concerts.

I was listening to the in-flight music. Classical, jazz, country… All mono. Have I mentioned how important it is to mix (or at least reference) in mono?

(I’m writing this at that awkward time after the plane pulls up yo the gate, the beep goes off and everyone stands up, but no one goes any where. I love my iPhone.)

 

2 comments

  1. This is one of my most important rules of mixing and despite variations of this rule are mentioned everywhere all the time, it can be repeated again and again: -Generally, for non orchestral music: -Do the mix in mono first and don’t stop before every single item is audible or do a positive change in the overall picture. If it’s not heard or don’t make a change in a positive way, then just mute it. Then when everything sounds great, one can start panning to stereo. Generally, if it’s not mono compatible, then it will sound like crap in one or more Stereo or in example 5.1 systems.

    To be honest, I’m not very impressed by many of this 5.1 (or other 3Difyed) mixes, they often have phase problems in different environments. And stereo gives in my opinion the best music listening experience anyway(I’m talking audio only here).

    After all, it’s not without a good reason that stereo has survived all multi channel attempts so far. And by always making mixes mono compatible, then the transparency and details comes in to the picture and making stereo even better; anyone remember the quadraphonic systems in the 70’s? They was not bad at all, but are survived by stereo.

    I want the band in the front of me when enjoying music. If I want to be surrounded by music, then I just play in a band.

    1. Good advice Jostein. I like the idea you mentioned:

      “If it’s not heard or don’t make a change in a positive way, then just mute it. Then when everything sounds great, one can start panning to stereo.”

      I wonder if 5.1 will ever be fully adopted into the audio-only crowd. I’ve heard a few good mixes, but they are hard to find.

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