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mixing double bass recordings

Discussion in 'Recordings [DB]' started by Dave Irwin, Jan 26, 2003.

  1. Seems like no matter what I do, my mixes are "boomy" when played on a car stereo. Even when they sound fine on the home stereo or a boombox.

    Has anyone run into this?

  2. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    By "mixes" do you mean recordings of yourself playing? If so, then welcome to the wonderful world of mixing and mastering! I used to always run into this, even though I've got a pretty nice set of speakers in the car. The boominess that you refer to is most likely a rogue frequency that you need to hunt down and EQ out.

    It's a matter of taste, but you could try adding a high pass filter somewhere down around or below 100hz...this will allow the upper harmonics of the lower notes to ring out clearly while not saturating the lower end with mud. It's interesting that many jazz producers do this even though some of the fundamental pitches on the bass go well below this cutoff point. I usually shelf everything below 80hz, and then also do a slight cut at around 400hz to remove that "boxy" sound in the low mids. If you have the gear to do this, give it a try. Best of luck.
  3. Thanks for the suggestions, I'll try playing with the frequencies you mentioned. I am al little worried that those are the frequencies where most of my bass part lives.

  4. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    And quite rightly so. If you have a high pass filter with an adjustable Q, you can (by trial and error) make this compromise to the best of your ability. In my case, 80hz was the point where I started to get greatly diminishing returns. On your bass, it may be different. Try everything, keep what works, and throw out what doesn't. Good luck.
  5. man, it *is* hard mixing DB!

    I'm doing it now and it's not as easy as BG... I had to do some radical curves on the eq...I had to boost about 4k to 8k (be careful or you get too much 'click') and really drop out the 300-500Hz range. I did boost about 100Hz. Seemed to help a lot.

    BTW I used the Waves Q10 EQ plug-in and used the '10-band master EQ' setting.
  6. eugene swank

    eugene swank

    Jun 6, 2003
    How did you record the upright? Using it's pickup and running direct?

    I've had no problems with skipping the pickup route and going with a 1" large diaphram condenser mic located about a foot in front of the bridge a little off center on the bottom-end side. The high end response of the condenser will pick up more of the "sizzle" of the tone while still keeping a solid subfrequency. If you don't get that "sizzle" on the tape, you're left with only subfrequencies, and most car stereos don't handle the bottom end below 100hz. That's why it sounds fine on the home stereo but not in the car. If you force the eq curve into the higher freq's, it'll start sounding screwy. So the only way is to get the natural upper sounds of the tones from the start, then you have the room to adjust the butt to need. I normally run it through a light limiter going on to the tape to keep it all even, then barely use any eq at all for the mixdown.
    I've found this works for pluckin and slappin, I haven't tried it for bow. I would guess for bow it would pick up too much bow slide noise and a different mic placement would be better.

    Just an opinion.

    Mr. Swankenstein

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