July 31, 2016

The Best Way To Tune Kick Drums (Part 3)

The best way to tune a kick drum is to use native flex pitch-editing algorithms or high-quality third party flex pitch-editing suites. Recording artists, music producers, and audio engineers should all have tools within any DAW of choice to handle pitch correction in a time efficient and high-resolution way. In 2016 the software market for pitch correction and editing has expanded significantly, and tools are available to all music producers, in all genres, at all different price points. A free approach to pitch correction and kick drum tuning would be the native “flex pitch” editor within Logic X. As seen in the photo, the pitch editor allows the movement of audio files and regions to desired notes/keys. To reference article one of this series, it is imperative before doing any manipulation to the pitch of the kick drum that there is a firm understanding of the project key, so the kick drum tuning is accurate. The best way to tune […]
July 30, 2016

Using MIDI Drums vs. Using Audio Drum Samples (Part 2)

MIDI drums offer detailed control over tuning, pitch accuracy, and editability. Audio drums are often as easy as “drag and drop” but might need pitch correction plugins to tune the pre-processed samples to the key of the project. Many music producers buy and use sample packs. Sample packs have a high value in today’s music production market because these packages offer high-quality kick drum audio samples at affordable costs. When using audio samples, it is a wise idea to audition/use various pitch correction mixing plugins to understand some of the best ways for tuning kick drums (for the specific files at hand). One plugin might work perfectly for an organic kick drum whereas another plugin might work better for an 808. The key is to understand where the strengths are in each of the tuning based mixing plugins offered in the DAW or purchased for the DAW. If audio is not the direction of choice and mixing plugins are a […]
July 27, 2016

Best Ways to Tune Kick Drums (Part 1)

The best way to tune kick drum is to use mixing plugins to save time while rendering the best quality kick drum sound for your mix. Modern pop, dubstep, chillstep, house, trance, and just about every genre that comes to mind all uses accurately tuned kick drums. Some music goes much deeper into tuning than others, but all genres share a basic level of tuning and tonal accuracy. No matter what music you are producing it is imperative that your kick drum is tuned to the key of the project. If you are not tuning your kick drums, your music productions are suffering! Before diving into the mixing plugins that can and should be used to tune kick drums, and other drum layers as well, we have to cover the basics of how to efficiently produce drums for all styles of music. Let us be clear when we say that: Tuning your kick drum is not a mixing related task! […]
July 20, 2016

The Wonderful World of Dynamics Processing

Music production and audio engineering are all about emotion, depth, and dynamics. Understanding compression and other dynamics processing is one thing, but knowing “what dynamics are” regarding music production, is not the same as knowing the “why” the “how” behind the “what.” Compression and other forms are dynamics processing are the aspects we are going to cover in this article. The more you know about EQ, compression, noise gates, expanders, and other mixing plugins the more professional your music will sound. The WHY: Dynamics are a must in music productions because they create excitement, movement, and help the listener stay engaged in the song as it is progressing. To use dynamics advantageously, one must understand the “whys” before applying something like a compressor in an ITB mixing session. Remember that compression and all other mixing plugins are always used subjectively based on each track (channel strip with fader). The good news is all DAWs like Logic X, Pro Tools 12, […]
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