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Headphones vs Monitors: Pro's + Con's

Headphones versus monitors, a contentious topic in an age where music production technology is so easily accessible and someone can compose, arrange, produce, mix and publish a song all from the comfort of their bedroom. Which more often than not, do not offer the most ideal acoustics to be monitoring for the critical listening sometimes required for producing and mixing. 
 

So in order to give a helping hand for those of you who are still on the fence on the debate on headphones vs monitors I’ve put together a list of some pro’s & con’s for both set ups.

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Compression that Cuts and adds punch to a kick.

Compression is a tool that when paired with this unorthodox technique can add punch and clarity to percussive elements in a mix and heighten the sense of dynamics.

This concept revolves around using a slow attack time to allow transients through the compressor before any gain reduction is engaged to reduce the signal strength. This then leaves only the tail of the element to get compressed whilst the transient that triggers the compressor is left relatively unscaved.

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February '15 Studio Update

Mastering releases for numerous artists and labels both interstate and internationally and welcoming both new and familiar faces back to the studio, the last month of summer really delivered when it came to great quality music and creativity.

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Audiophile or Audiophool?

What we hear and our ability to develop our own intuition in creating, composing, recording, producing, and mixing great records is something that no technology, plugin settings or flash set up can ever replace.

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January '15 Studio Update

Happy new year from Panorama Mixing & mastering studio. A big thanks goes out to all the artists, producers and engineers who made 2014 a very exciting and enjoyable year at the studio. In continuing on with the good spirit, great music and fun times enjoyed during 2014 January delivered a great diversity in the music coming through the studio.
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November '14 Studio Update

November was a great month at the studio, the last month of spring really delivered a great array of talent from melbourne, australia and internationally. 
 

The studio saw the talents of...

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October '14 Studio Update

October was very much the month of electronic beats, screaming synths and punchy 808’s. The studio saw a diverse range of producing talent fill the studio with some crazy sounds and musical talent.

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August '14 Studio Update

August was a very interesting month with ballsy rock mixes, quirky pop, chilled out beats to "in your face" Melbourne EDM which provided the perfect backdrop moving into the years spring weather.

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July '14 Studio Update: The Key to Great Mastering

This July was mixing mania. we were blessed mixing an insane bounce record by Right-0 as well as 2 EP releases from Melbourne rock demons Lace and Whiskey recorded by engineering genius Ben Calleja.

The month also housed a handful of mastering sessions from local Melbourne EDM producers to the melbourne made demons, Melodic Death Metal band S
árspell which definitely threw some nice variety into the mix(Pun intended).
 

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Mixing Practice: Three Dimensions of a Mix

When starting a session I take a much more simplistic approach when mixing elements for a song. Simple physical locations in the sound stage such as Left to right[Width], foreground and background[depth], high and low[height] house a large deal of importance when trying to make elements sit in their own space within a mix.

 

Allow me to go through them and help explain how each of these dimensions can be used to help begin shape and form the foundations for a great mix.

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Making A Record: The Importance of Pre-Production

Pre-production is similar to setting up a master plan for a large project, a big brainstorm and plan of your goals for the music production and how to achieve them.

The following are some questions I’ve used when working one on one with artists to produce their EPs or Albums as it helps provide a solid outline for the project.

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Mixing Practice: The last 5% of mixing and preparing for mastering

As engineers, musicians, composers and producers, navigating through the last 5% of a project is the most ball breaking, frustrating and and at times the most utterly self shattering experience to go through. Knowing a project is ALMOST there, but not quite there, can be a very large mental hurdle. The following outlines some methods I often use to help me past the hurdle when in a mixing rutt.

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June '14 Studio Update: Album Sequencing, topping and tailing.

June was a month that really kept me on my feet engaging with a diverse range of genres from chilled out electronic beats to black death metal as well as everything in between; Lo-fi, pop, dance etc.

 

Read all about it as well as some of my advice when it comes to sequencing an EP or Album in mastering.

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Equalisation: Corrective and Creative, Part 3/3 - Creative EQ

One of the roles of mastering is to facilitate a platform to polish over a mix in an acoustic environment that presents information with complete accuracy and neutrality. A technique that is commonly employed in mastering to achieve tonal balance in supporting both the mixes intentions and genre is creative equalisation.

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Equalisation: Corrective and Creative, Part 1/3 - Nick's Toolkit

An equaliser can by far be the most powerful tool in any engineers arsenal when used correctly, for tracking, mixing, live audio, production and of course, mastering. This 3 part installment I intend to show you a little of how I use equalisation day to day when mastering records. To start off I think it’s best for me to cover a small selection of EQ’s I use and why I use them.

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MAY '14 STUDIO UPDATE: WHEN AND WHEN NOT TO LIMIT THE MIX-BUS

The common practice of mix-bus limiting is something which can be an invaluable tool during the mixing process, however I feel as though this practice hinders the flow of many peoples mixing sessions who aren't completely in touch with the concept. So I thought I'd give you some insight into when and when not this practice can be used to its best affect.

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