MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index
 FAQ & Terms of UseFAQ & Terms Of Use   Wiggler RadioMW Radio   Muff Wiggler TwitterTwitter   Support the site @ PatreonPatreon 
 SearchSearch   RegisterSign up   Log inLog in 
WIGGLING 'LITE' IN GUEST MODE

Mixing with headphones...
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Production Techniques  
Author Mixing with headphones...
astroschnautzer
I don¨t have any monitors at the moment, am trying to mix with headphones with not so good results, any of those "mix with headphones" plugins out there for mac?
rekem1000
How good are your 'phones?

I'm so usd to my Beyer DT880's I can get pretty close to the same results as my BM5A's. It'll come down to how welll you know your 'phone's sound and being able to compensate for real world listening.

Those mix with 'phone's apps will only make things worse.
tIB
Ive been mixing on allesandro MS1's for the past 3 years now. no plugs needed, just a decent set of headphones that you know well and have cross referenced plenty.
Babaluma
yeah just keep at it and keep listening to a) your mixes on as many other systems as possible, and b) your favourite music through the same headphones. keep comparing and contrasting. after a few years you should get quite good at it. wink
mojopin
yeah, no plugins. they always make it sound much worse. i feel that mixing with quality headphones (i use hd800 with dac-1) is superior to monitors for making tonal decisions minus the sub range. or you can look it as getting more bang for your buck.
heidi oyala
i would not mix (only) with headphones - it is ok to make music/sketches with it - but a mix?
i was never happy with it - i have a sennheiser hd 25
tIB
^ needs must.
widdly
I can never get the bass balanced properly if I mix only on headphones. Listening to a mix on hifi speakers somewhere else then trying to fix it with headphones back in the studio is hard. I guess it takes practice and more listening.
dogoftears
make sure you have yr multimeter open and dont try to embelish frequencies below 80 hz. figure out the compensation between your headphones and other sound systems. everything is opposite day on phones- highs will be louder and bass lower, but this is "normal"....

i find it difficult to mix on phones alone but i have many friends who pull it off with marvelous results so i know it's possible. they are really nice for actually hearing how much mid range detail you've got.

sony MDR's here... old six shooter.
hiawog
i probably didn't try it long enough, but it wasn't working for me. even flawed monitors, now that i'm getting to know them, are definitely helping me get better results. but i think it's very important to listen to your mix on a few different systems and try to stabilize it. often painful and humiliating, but really helpful.
hdd
astroschnautzer wrote:
I don¨t have any monitors at the moment, am trying to mix with headphones with not so good results, any of those "mix with headphones" plugins out there for mac?



Plug won't really, help you, it'll solve some stereo phasing problems but i don't think it's the main problem when you mix with headphones.
The problem is that ears are pretty quick tired with headphones, and then you loose a lot of sensation in the dynamic sections, there won't be any plug for this.
I compose a lot with headphones but i never mix with.
astroschnautzer
Thanks for the answers,so no plugins it is then, guess its just a matter of getting used to headphone mixing now then smile I'm mixing mixing on apair of akgk204 studio headphones, but I'm soon changing to sennheiser hd25 for more portability... The main problem I have is with stereo imaging, making the mixes too "narrow" and I compress more with headphones too, my mixes end up "claustrophobic" smile....
melodydad
I think a lot of it is getting to know what it is you are hearing - whether you are using headphones or monitors.

Sennheiser HD650 maybe (although I find them a bit heavy and tiring to wear for long periods, but HD25???? I personally would not want to mix using them . . .. although I have used them just for stereo editing.

I just got a pair of the KRK8400's and so far am liking what I hear - and how they feel It's peanut butter jelly time!
astroschnautzer
melodydad wrote:
but HD25???? I personally would not want to mix using them . . .. although I have used them just for stereo editing.
Well, I would need them anyway for their ability to use in loud situations , but if they are not good for mixing then I probably just stick with the akg's for mixing...I guess they are ok for that...
Hainbach
Yeah, stick with the AKGs or get K701. You will need an open back headphone for mixing. I have to mix a lot outside of my studio and find it always helpful to have a portable pair of speakers to get the overall balance right. Even humble macbooks speakers will tell you easier if your vocals are drowning then the best headphones can. Also, put a mono switch on the master to check levels. Stereo sounds can really mess with your perception of balance.
tuj
you need monitors and headphones. only the combination will give you proper mixing. even then, two sets of monitors can be invaluable, one can be a set of hifi speakers.
aksen
Hainbach wrote:
You will need an open back headphone for mixing.

what's the science/logic behind that?
tIB
^ better/more open sound and less fatiguing I think.
Hainbach
tIB wrote:
^ better/more open sound and less fatiguing I think.


True. Also, closed backs are great for tracking, as you have less bleed, but will hurt your ears after a time when mixing. Also, the frequency response of closed backs is generally more tailored to the application of tracking - bass enhanced, cuts to the 1kHz to 5kHz range to compensate harshness and a boost in the upper registers for sheen.

There a middling solutions such as the DT880, which is half-closed, but I have never liked these cans. I use a DT770 for tracking and an AKG701 (same as the pro K702 only in consumer white and a fixed chord, but much cheaper) for mixing.

Generally, its harder to get translatable results with just headphones and it takes much longer, unless your source material has been tracked very well.
aksen
hmm ok. i've been using hd25s for years now, and while i certainly don't enjoy long sessions with them for comfort reasons, i didn't think about the acoustic properties of them - i found the sound reproduction on them to be pretty good, and i didn't realise open/closed back designs would make a lot of difference (i do like the isolating properties of closed phones though).

i knew mixing on headphones was not ideal, but certainly when i was writing exclusively on the PC it was the only option i had. i tend to only use them nowadays with hardware when i can't have the monitors on, though i think i still "trust" the sennheisers more than my monitor speakers just because i'm so used to them.
tIB
^ I dont think there is any substitute for knowing your headphones when trying to mix with them.

Next year Im hoping to get my studio kitted out with so planning on a return to monitors... be interesting to see if I go back to the MS1's every time. I suspect I will.
amnesia
I have mixed with headphones since 2001 and I believe if you own some great headphones like my Sennhiser HD650's you will be able to mix fine.
Babaluma
agree! knowing your system really really well (whether it be headphones or monitors) is probably way more important than whether you use one or the other, or the brand/price etc. am sure someone using the same cans for ten years could probably pull off a better mix than someone who just got a brand new pair of flash monitors.
tuj
Babaluma wrote:
agree! knowing your system really really well (whether it be headphones or monitors) is probably way more important than whether you use one or the other, or the brand/price etc. am sure someone using the same cans for ten years could probably pull off a better mix than someone who just got a brand new pair of flash monitors.


+1. I would rather use a set of hifi speakers that I know really well than the latest and greatest set of monitors.
tIB
Since we are on the subject I have to say the alessandro MS1's are far and away the best price to performance of anything Ive ever used- 99 US dollars and they sound brilliant. Very detailed and transparent... highly recommended.

http://www.alessandro-products.com/main.php?p=headphones

(I tried the MS2 as well and whilst they were better I didnt think they were that much better for the extra 200 dollars, I also have a pair of grado SR80 which the MS1 are better than.)
amnesia
[quote="tIB"]Since we are on the subject I have to say the alessandro MS1's are far and away the best price to performance of anything Ive ever used- 99 US dollars and they sound brilliant. Very detailed and transparent... highly recommended.

But highly uncomfortable. They are like 70's airplave headphones.

They have a great sound but hurt to wear.
tIB
[quote="amnesia"]
tIB wrote:
Since we are on the subject I have to say the alessandro MS1's are far and away the best price to performance of anything Ive ever used- 99 US dollars and they sound brilliant. Very detailed and transparent... highly recommended.

But highly uncomfortable. They are like 70's airplave headphones.

They have a great sound but hurt to wear.


hah, yeah comfort isnt their strong point, though i get on fine... must be my gigantic ears providing a cushion... I swapped the pads on mine to bowls, in theory they should be worse than comfy pads but in practice I much prefer them. Word of a better bass response that way too though its so marginal I couldnt say whether or not that is true.

Should also mention that mine went back to factory for repair, though that was due to a shoddy repair in the first place in bangkok. Great service from allessandro though and the problem not at all his fault imho.
philter
For me headphones are like a stethoscope. Great for a detailed examination but not good for whole mixes.
amnesia
I would think the majority of the worlds population listens to music with headphones on. Be interesting to find out what the percentages would be.
monads
How do the Sennhiser HD650's compare with the AKG K 701's?

There's so many options...
philter
amnesia wrote:
I would think the majority of the worlds population listens to music with headphones on.


And maybe even more true for 'wiggler' music.

Yet I find that my attempts at headphone mixes often don't translate to speakers, while a solid speaker mix always works on the phones. Maybe we need start releasing 'the headphone mix' of everything.
aksen
i have a cd sitting here on my desk at work - giuseppe ielasi's "tools" on 12k records - that states on the back "please do not use headphones for playback". i have yet to listen to it because of this...
Hainbach
monads wrote:
How do the Sennhiser HD650's compare with the AKG K 701's?

There's so many options...


Both the HDs and the Ks are great headphones and its a matter of taste whether you prefer the dry and detailed AKG sound or Sennheiser's slightly more hifi tone.

But there also is 150EUR price difference, because the 701 are marked as consumer cans, even though they are technically the same as the 300EUR pro-702. Its a more competetive market.

With the price difference, the 701 is a no-brainer, imho.
monads
Thanks for the insight Hainbach. All I want is a nice pair of mixing phones (priced in the middle range). I don't want to spend Sennheiser HD800 dollars.
oinkbanana
i love my HD650
someone earlier in the thread used the word "stethoscope", which is pretty accurate. but I wouldn't rely on them for major stereo placement or reverb.
ear ear
There was an interesting article in Sound on Sound a few years ago on things to be aware of when mixing using headphones instead of monitors. The only thing I can remember from it is something about headphones altering your perception of tempo... worth looking up.
oinkbanana
was it this article
http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/jan07/articles/mixingheadphones.htm

Quote:
Another advantage to the clarity of headphone playback is that you can use it to add nuances and fairy dust to your mixes. These subtle little details improve the loudspeaker experience as well, but they are far easier to judge with headphones because you can hear the result of every tiny parameter change. Some examples include almost subliminal tempo-related echoes that add low-level interest, occasional auto-pan effects to create mix movement, transient enhancement, incidental percussion and ambient effects. You could also experiment with more extreme effects, using heavy compression, distortion and so on, but mixed in occasionally at very low levels. It's just so much easier and more fun to add such effects when you're working on headphones, and the result is a rich patina of low-level detail.


tempo related, but not quite 'altering perception of tempo'
seriously, i just don't get it
ear ear
No, it's not the bit you've got in bold. It might not have been an article, rather one of those readers' questions they pick out every month and give an in-depth answer. I think the gist of it was that perceived tempo can be a wee bit quicker on headphones...

EDIT: just did a bit of a search, and could only find a reference to this on the SOS Forums, but nothing particularly authoritative... hmmm.....
jules
Adding my pinch of ions.

I think the headphone mixing is becoming kind of critical in a sense.
I've got the impression that everywhere I look, people are listening to music with headphones. Of course there's the club, but I would consider that as a targeted direction to output your mixes.

Sure, a good pair of speaker, and being appropriately familiar to them is a must. But, when I look around, I see less and less people taking a real CD, with good audio files and playing it on a decent Hifi system.

And for the people I know that are not paying a lot of attention to their listening condition and environment, they are slaved to the weird itunes equalization presets and such.

Which lead me to practically trying my mixes on as many cheap headphones as I can. The white apple ones are really aggressive in the low mid range, but kind of cut the low end. I've got some cheap in-aural seinheiser ones (also common) which, as you can guess do give a massive boost between 50 and 120Hz. Then there's the "princess leia hairdo shaped ones", which used to be "audiophile" stuff, but now are wore on your way to buy milk. Most of them are also pumping bass like crazy.

My conclusion is that not only you've got to try your mix on different stereo systems, but also on different headphones, which are easily correlated to the type of music/audience of your music.
pocket dragon
Greetings everyone. Better post before I get kicked out. thumbs up


ear ear wrote:
There was an interesting article in Sound on Sound a few years ago on things to be aware of when mixing using headphones instead of monitors. The only thing I can remember from it is something about headphones altering your perception of tempo... worth looking up.


I often find that after creating a mix in headphones and then moving to check the result in monitors, the monitor mix actually sounds much _faster_. And sloppy for some reason - especially if there are a lot of busy hi-hats or other mid-HF elements going on.

Can't find the article you mentioned but I wish I knew more about this.
causticlogic
I like doing some of the mix with head phones, but only for a rough draft and as reference afterwards or I find things get lost.
goganao
pocket dragon wrote:
Greetings everyone. Better post before I get kicked out. thumbs up


ear ear wrote:
There was an interesting article in Sound on Sound a few years ago on things to be aware of when mixing using headphones instead of monitors. The only thing I can remember from it is something about headphones altering your perception of tempo... worth looking up.


I often find that after creating a mix in headphones and then moving to check the result in monitors, the monitor mix actually sounds much _faster_. And sloppy for some reason - especially if there are a lot of busy hi-hats or other mid-HF elements going on.

Can't find the article you mentioned but I wish I knew more about this.


You could locate in the other sections tho! This is fun!

EDIT: Sorry! didn't check the date before posting... very frustrating
thevegasnerve
Yeah, I try to listen to mixes in my car, monitors, and several headphones.. Really need a mono mix option..

It’s fascinating the difference and somewhat frustrating. I always use an outside mastering person to keep me in check.. And try to keep compositions sparse and pay close attention to possible pitfalls when selecting sounds. But I do trust my Beyer DT770s quite a bit, along with a quick review on my monitors.
naturligfunktion
jules wrote:
Adding my pinch of ions.

I think the headphone mixing is becoming kind of critical in a sense.
I've got the impression that everywhere I look, people are listening to music with headphones. Of course there's the club, but I would consider that as a targeted direction to output your mixes.

Sure, a good pair of speaker, and being appropriately familiar to them is a must. But, when I look around, I see less and less people taking a real CD, with good audio files and playing it on a decent Hifi system.

And for the people I know that are not paying a lot of attention to their listening condition and environment, they are slaved to the weird itunes equalization presets and such.

Which lead me to practically trying my mixes on as many cheap headphones as I can. The white apple ones are really aggressive in the low mid range, but kind of cut the low end. I've got some cheap in-aural seinheiser ones (also common) which, as you can guess do give a massive boost between 50 and 120Hz. Then there's the "princess leia hairdo shaped ones", which used to be "audiophile" stuff, but now are wore on your way to buy milk. Most of them are also pumping bass like crazy.

My conclusion is that not only you've got to try your mix on different stereo systems, but also on different headphones, which are easily correlated to the type of music/audience of your music.

I agree on the sentiment that one should try their mixes on different speakers, headphones and so forth, as that in the end leads to a better sounding mix (I always try out my song on the laptop speakers, which is very recommended). In my experience (which is very limited..) the goal is to create a mix that sounds good, and if something is mixed properly, with a good dynamic and good levels, it tend to sounds good on different systems, be it headphones or in the car or at your friends house.

Personally, to achieve that, I really need a good pair of monitors and a good room. Headphones doesn't cut it, at all. But I absolutely need a pair of headphones for reference, as I need to listen to the mix at different speakers, in different places etc.
joeTron
I'm a full time audio engineer for TV. I spend all my time on headsets cleaning and editing dialog. BEWARE WHEN USING HEADSETS!!! Often I find that pure sound shot directly into your ears isn't the same sound popping out of a monitor then into the air then finally into your ears. Especially problematic for me is choosing reverb amount.
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Production Techniques  
Page 1 of 2
Powered by phpBB © phpBB Group