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Author Comments

I finally learned what LP and HP filters are and i also learned how to mess with LFO. So i decided to venture into the unknown and i tried to make a drum and bass tune. I will apolagize ahead of time for the sound quality, for some reason, in FL the tune sounds crystal clear, but when i render it everything sounds blurry and moshed together. I would REALLY appreciate any tips on how to make final renders sound clean without killing bass. Please let me know wether you guys like it or not and where i can improve!


not bad, Mixdown needs some serious work

Hey there, Musically it sounds ok (the lead is a tad pendulum-esque for me, but thats just a personal taste thing, so don't pay too much attention to that)

Swanbrown made some fairly valid points on the whole. Although I disagree with the "stereo presence" on a bassline. Particularly in drum and bass. the actual bassline sound wants to be completely centred. If you want to add some stereo to it, at a touch of reverb (a plate reverb, mainly dry would be perfect) with a fairly short tail.

The Mixdown definitely needs some serious work. It sounds like you've got all of the seperate aspects of the mix competing for space in the audible frequency range. A lot of the clipping/overdriving issues could be improved greatly, by rolling off the bass at about 60hz (this is to stop the inaudible aspects of a sound, saturating the mix)

Another thing you could do to help this, is go to your mixer, and drop everything down to halfway (i'm guessing that pretty much all of your mixer tracks are maxed, as you selectively nudge them up to bring stuff out...i was there once upon a time too :)) then gradually adjust them up without making them all go into the red.

Use a limiter on the master. I Don't use FL studio, but i'm pretty sure it has "fruity limiter" as a standard limiter in default track templates. You could use Maximus too, this is a great multiband compressor/limiter.

If you are using a limiter correctly, you SHOULDN'T have to use normalize, as the maximum stable volume should already be set.

I believe that a better option making the bass stand out a bit more, is to a)If you are using a multi oscillator synth, detune the oscs evenly either side of zero...ie osc 1 = +0.15 and osc 2= -0.15 (osc 3 if you have one could be detuned -12 semis for a sub presence) If you detune the bass one way, either side of zero, it stands out for all the wrong reasons (being out of tune with reference to the rest of the track) then b) add a compressor on the bassline track. With a reasonably low attack, slightly higher release, reasonably high threshhold.

I could go on and on, but I fear i'm being too technical already. If you want any specific help with your mixdowns, PM me dude. I've been at it for a really long time. Check my tracks if you want to hear if i'm qualified enough. =) keep it up man, potential for a floorfiller here!

tigger888 responds:

Thank you VERY much for taking time to type all this out and explaining this to me. I will start using more compression, equalizing and other techniques in my tunes now. This review is GREATLY appreciated, thanks for the help.

general mixdown stuff

Sounds like a couple things are happening;
1- Clipping. FL (and most others) Give them-selves alot of "head-room" for volume, so they can be really forgiving on play-back. Once they render, to a file, all that goes away, so you have to keep a careful eye on your master levels, and try to keep in the top 8'th (orange) part without hitting the top.

2- Normalizing (setting your track to optimum level)- Also make sure that FL isn't trying to automatically normalize your tracks before mixing them down. That can throw things off. It's best to normalize your tracks before hand, so you know what you are dealing with, and even your app tries to Normalize, the effect is negligible.

3- Synths, and online effects. Some VST doesn't always behave exactly the same in real time as it does in render time (especially if they don't like to play nice with other plug-ins). The best way to safeguard is to render your synth/effect tracks Solo, Drop that file in as a wave, then mute the track it came from.

4-bass; A couple tricks;
A) Detune your bass up just a (tiny) tad from the rest. Just enough to let it stand up.
B) split your bass into Right & Left mono tracks, then invert one of the waves and/or Delay one side slightly (less than 10 ms) for more stereo presence. (A very slight detune on one side can do the same)

BTW- Filtering Technique is valuable and tricky. I notice that this track is using a LP on EVERYTHING (but the bell). That's Prolly what's Mushing this track. Also, Most filters have a pretty low threshold for overdrive, and will want to distort easily, So that's something else to watch out for.

Hope This helps.

tigger888 responds:

Thanks for the VERY helpful review! So LP distorts the sound even if its cranked all the way down? Thanks for all these pointers about "headroom" and the bass tricks! I will do my best to implement all this into a revision of this track and future tunes!

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Credits & Info


May 5, 2010
3:56 AM EDT
File Info
2.3 MB
1 min 15 sec
4.27 / 5.00

Licensing Terms

Please contact me if you would like to use this in a project. We can discuss the details.