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Setting up for a mix

From: Logic Pro 9 Essential Training

Video: Setting up for a mix

Organization is going to be key to your success when you are mixing. This song may seem fairy unruly at 22 tracks, but it's nothing compared to some of the larger mixes these days. Subjective listing while you are mixing is a very right-brain actively, while technical tasks like naming, locating and routing track outputs are very left-brain. Let's go over some strategies to get the left-brain organization done first, so we can stay focused on the right-brain activity as we mix. It's time to get familiar with the Mixer window, hit Command+2 to open it. Here you see all of your tracks that are in the Arrange window, if the Arrange button at the top is checked.

Setting up for a mix

Organization is going to be key to your success when you are mixing. This song may seem fairy unruly at 22 tracks, but it's nothing compared to some of the larger mixes these days. Subjective listing while you are mixing is a very right-brain actively, while technical tasks like naming, locating and routing track outputs are very left-brain. Let's go over some strategies to get the left-brain organization done first, so we can stay focused on the right-brain activity as we mix. It's time to get familiar with the Mixer window, hit Command+2 to open it. Here you see all of your tracks that are in the Arrange window, if the Arrange button at the top is checked.

If you select All you'll see All the tracks in your project, even the ones that you are currently using, like the Click track. You can also filter out tracks by type. For example, if you only want to see the Output tracks, we can uncheck the other track types. Now, we are just seeing the Stereo Output. Let's click Arrange again to go back. It's good to be consistent about track order. There are some conventions. It's traditional to put the Kick on the first track because back in the analog days the heavy base sounds used to cross talk over to other tape tracks.

Also, we usually put the vocal around the center of the mix because it's right in the middle of the console at mix position. You can choose whatever order makes the most sense to you, but be consistent from mix to mix. It'll help you be focused. You can move the order of tracks only in the Arrange window. Let's go to the Arrange window to see. To move tracks, go to the Track Header till you have the Hand icon and pull the Track up or down. Let's move this guitar track up. Let's also move the other guitar tracks so they are all together. We will move the SlideGuitar up and we'll move the WahWah guitar up.

Once you have your tracks in order, it's good to color-code them by type for easy visual access. Go back to the Mixer window and we are going to select all of the drum tracks. Drag a selection around all the tracks to select more that one track at one time. Now, we are going to color-code these red. We will go up to the View and choose Colors and choose red. So, all of our drum tracks look red in the Mix window. Let's go back to the Arrange window. It'd be useful, also, to see these colors in the Arrange window. To do this, go up to View, choose Configure Track Header and check the button at the bottom, Track Color Bars.

Click Done. Now we can see that red that we just made for the drum track shows up in the Arrange window. It'll also be useful to color-code our regions as well. So, we have the Kick track selected. We can go up here into Region and choose Color Regions by Channel Strips/Instruments. When I select this, it color-codes the region according to the color we made in the Mixer window. There's also quick key for this. Use a Down arrow to select the next track and use Option+Shift+C. I'll do this for each of these tracks. Great! Now, we have color-coded our regions and our tracks together.

Let's go back to the next window and close the color palette. Selecting more than one track in the Mixer window is useful, because you can move their faders and other operations together. Notice all the drum tracks are still selected since they are white. Watch when I move one of the faders, they all move together. You can also use Groups for the same effect. Let's try this on the BG ox. I'll select both of those tracks. To make a group for tracks, you can single- click in this gray area above the word 'Off.' Now, we can assign both of these tracks to Group 1.

You see a yellow 1 appears in both tracks. Let's go back into that menu and click Open Group Settings. And it opens a window where we can manage the settings for our groups. Double-click the Name field and type 'bg ox,' for background vocals. Hit Return to lock that in. You can also choose what parameters are going to be controlled by our group settings here. Let's close this window and now we can see that even when the tracks aren't selected - I'll deselect those tracks - the faders move together. That's how you can make a group and they are useful when you are mixing.

Notating more significant events a current time can also be useful in mixing. Let's go back to the Arrange window. For example, it's useful when you want to jump to that second chorus or bridge part of the song to work on it without hunting for it. We can use Markers to do this. To get to Markers, you can open the Lists menu on the right-hand side of the Arrange window. Choose the Marker tab. Notice we don't have any Markers yet for our song. Let's move the Playhead to the first chorus, right about here. Now, in the list, hit Create and it makes a Marker. You can see it up in the bar ruler.

We can double-click on the Name and we can change this Marker's Name by typing in 'Chorus.' As you can see, that name is reflected up in the bar ruler. We can also type in a bunch of notes down here. These notes will be accessible to us whenever we click on the Marker in the Lists view. Let's make one more Marker and you'll see what I mean. Let's go to the second chorus, hit Create and double-click here. We will call it Chorus 2. Now, we can use the mouse to click on Chorus 1. You can see our notes, Chorus 2.

It might seem a little time-intensive to do all this organizing. You'll be happy later when all you want to do is make creative judgments, not organize. When you are mixing your song, all this organizing will make it much easier to think clearly.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Logic Pro 9 Essential Training
Logic Pro 9 Essential Training

74 video lessons · 28012 viewers

Scott Hirsch
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 1m 55s
    1. Welcome
      50s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 5s
  2. 17m 39s
    1. Installing the software
      3m 19s
    2. Launching Logic for the first time, using the templates
      5m 15s
    3. Understanding audio interfaces
      3m 35s
    4. Understanding MIDI interfaces
      5m 30s
  3. 32m 15s
    1. Getting to know the Arrange window
      5m 15s
    2. Using the many windows of Logic
      4m 13s
    3. Creating your own screensets
      2m 23s
    4. Using the Transport window and controlling playback
      4m 54s
    5. Using the Toolbox
      2m 37s
    6. Naming tracks and regions
      3m 27s
    7. Learning useful and custom key commands
      5m 18s
    8. Saving and going mobile with your project
      4m 8s
  4. 41m 41s
    1. Setting up for recording
      5m 43s
    2. Understanding Metronome settings or the click track
      4m 7s
    3. Understanding tempo
      4m 37s
    4. Recording live instruments and vocals using multitrack recording
      3m 56s
    5. Playing with guitar madness: Amp design
      5m 13s
    6. Playing with guitar madness: Pedal board
      4m 5s
    7. Working with takes recording and comping
      4m 51s
    8. Punching in to replace bad audio
      4m 51s
    9. Using Varispeed to create an old tape machine sound
      4m 18s
  5. 1h 8m
    1. Understanding MIDI
      4m 41s
    2. Using the Logic synth instruments
      7m 4s
    3. Working with the emulator instruments
      5m 23s
    4. Using the EXS24 sampler
      3m 7s
    5. Building tracks with Ultrabeat
      5m 31s
    6. Using channel strips to select a virtual sound
      5m 29s
    7. Understanding the basics of MIDI recording
      4m 38s
    8. Learning how to use MIDI with Cycle Record
      4m 9s
    9. Using Logic's step input
      4m 3s
    10. Mastering quantization
      6m 18s
    11. Working in the Piano Scroll window
      5m 33s
    12. Editing controller messages with Hyper View
      4m 8s
    13. Working with the Hyper Editor
      5m 29s
    14. Working with the Events List
      3m 20s
  6. 29m 49s
    1. Importing prerecorded audio into Logic
      4m 5s
    2. Exploring Apple Loops
      4m 40s
    3. Creating your own Apple Loop
      4m 21s
    4. Conforming tempo, region to session, or session to region
      3m 51s
    5. Using the new Flex Time feature
      5m 17s
    6. Beat mapping your project
      4m 41s
    7. Importing elements from project to project
      2m 54s
  7. 24m 15s
    1. Understanding the basic editing techniques in the Arrange window
      7m 5s
    2. Tips for editing and arranging
      3m 21s
    3. Editing and merging regions in the Arrange window
      3m 45s
    4. Mastering fades for audio region arranging
      4m 58s
    5. Fixing and morphing sound with the Sample Editor
      5m 6s
  8. 11m 12s
    1. Working with notes and composing in the Score Editor
      4m 26s
    2. Editing notes, keys, and time signatures
      3m 35s
    3. Creating scores and lead sheets for musicians
      3m 11s
  9. 9m 8s
    1. Setting up for a sync video project
      4m 50s
    2. Scoring music to video
      4m 18s
  10. 56m 32s
    1. Mixing philosophies and five tools for mixing
      3m 37s
    2. Setting up for a mix
      5m 11s
    3. Directing audio traffic with fader levels
      5m 7s
    4. Exploring Logic's panning features
      4m 37s
    5. Exploring inserts: Using EQ as a mix tool
      6m 51s
    6. Exploring inserts: Using compression as a mix tool
      5m 38s
    7. Using advanced signal flow with aux and send tracks
      3m 12s
    8. Using advanced signal flow with time-based FX to create space in your mix
      3m 44s
    9. Using automation to create dynamic mixes
      6m 22s
    10. Giving your mix life with automation
      2m 45s
    11. Optimizing performance with freeze tracks
      4m 42s
    12. Using channel strips for audio processing
      4m 46s
  11. 16m 7s
    1. Understanding surround hardware requirements
      4m 5s
    2. Building surround mixing workflows
      6m 17s
    3. Using the surround panner
      5m 45s
  12. 15m 48s
    1. Bouncing down your song
      5m 31s
    2. Understanding why alt mixes are a good idea
      2m 22s
    3. Exploring Logic's export options
      3m 37s
    4. Mastering your own Logic project
      4m 18s
  13. 37s
    1. Goodbye
      37s

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