Basic/Beginners Mixing Concepts – Readjusting in Pure Mono

Posted: January 21, 2011 in Mixing

I know your Mix already sounds better after that :

but some professionals won’t say a mix is done until it sounds good in mono too.

this is why…

in the nature there are no monitors, so if a choir of 30 voices singing together there are 30 voices that comes from 30 different directions,

but if we recorded those 30 voices, and we ear them through 2 monitors now we have 30 voices coming from 2 different directions,

that’s where one voice (usually the louder) will mask other voices (the masking effect).

now if we were listening in 1 monitor only, we have now 30 voices coming from 1 direction, the masking effect here will be more obvious.

what we learn from all that ?

the more monitors you are mixing to, the more instruments can be inserted to the mix with less masking effect.

for example in surround system there can be far far more instruments living together peacefully than in a mono on speaker system.

don’t just believe everything I say, check, gather your own experience, be a pro.

what’s so important about the masking effect ?

the masking effect makes your mix blurry, less clear, you would have hard time listening for some of the instruments in the mix and hear what they are playing,

we almost always want clearer more understandable mix.

you got it, mixing or readjusting in pure mono can help achieving that.

pure mono means from one speaker only!

not two speaker in mono mode but one speaker in mono mode, remember.

save your work always before changing anything in mono.

try making you pure mono readjustments small and effective, of course if something drastic have to be done, you are free to go, but remember your mix is almost done, and we don’t want to change things too much.

readjusting in pure mono sometimes make mistakes more obvious, and you will be amazed how an old technology (pure mono) can help you see things better.


in the next article I will upload the project in 24bits 44.1Khz wav files so you can mix it yourself in your own environment and practice.

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