TechMuze Academy › Forums › Music Production › Mixing on headphones or speakers?
Tagged: headphones speakers mixing
- This topic has 19 replies, 4 voices, and was last updated 5 years, 8 months ago by Dezz Asante.
August 19, 2017 at 1:59 pm #4728
I’d really like to know your opinion on this subject. I had a problem recently because I’ve mixed a song on headphones, by trying to respect all the dimensions, however when listening on speakers, everything sounds really unbalanced: the bass is too loud, you can barely hear the synths and the top drums, and the voice sounds really distorted. I don’t even wanna mention the stereo widening because there is none when I listen on speakers. I asked other opinions as well, and I was told it was because I did my mix on headphones, and that this doesn’t happen if you do it the other way around (on speakers).
so what do you think, is it better to mix on speakers or headphones?
Thank you for your time!August 23, 2017 at 9:44 am #4733Dave RoseParticipant
I’m a student of MixLessons, too, and my understanding is that it’s generally better to mix on speakers than on headphones, but there are always exceptions.
For instance, my room is a strange shape with no acoustic treatment on the walls, and that plays a negative part in my mixes due to my hearing uneven reflective sounds as well as the direct sounds from the speakers.
I was told that one way around this is to mix at quieter levels. That works pretty well for me.
Also, regarding headphones, I recently purchased the Waves NX headphone plugin, which has really helped me with mixing on headphones. The problem for me has always been that headphones always make music sound like it’s too close and more inside my head. This plugin spreads out the sound and gives the effect of depth, too, so it sounds like I’m listening on studio speakers.
I’m still experimenting with it at this stage, so I can’t necessarily recommend it, but it is helping me, that’s for sure.
It’s a tricky business, isn’t it, trying to achieve a mix which sounds good when on multiple speakers, let alone when things sound so radically different from one set up to another.August 24, 2017 at 2:55 pm #4746
I see, thanks a lot for your reply Dave 🙂August 24, 2017 at 7:54 pm #4752
I too have the same problem of mixing in an untreated room. I’ve been doing all my mixing using headphones recently. i live in a townhouse that is close to a major highway so mixing at lower levels doesn’t really work for me unfortunately. I’m looking to upgrade to a better set of headphones soon, and hear about the sonar works plug in on one of Dezz’s podcasts. He seems to like it quite a bit, so I was looking to give that a shot. I think that if you get to know the equipment you are using you can get some good quality mixes, even if it’s not top of the line stuff.August 25, 2017 at 11:43 am #4753
Thomas, when you mix on headphones and listen on speakers, does it sound the same? As for sonar, I also heard about it but I’m not 100% convinced yet 🙂August 25, 2017 at 7:50 pm #4755
So I’ve only been doing this a few weeks and so far my results have been ok. The main thing I’ve noticed is that the headphones have more lower end, so I tend to over compensate and lower the bass and kick drum too much. I’m hoping that with more practice and an upgrade to better headphones it will lead to better results.August 28, 2017 at 11:12 am #4757Dezz AsanteKeymaster
The SonarWorks plugin is quite good however I’ve heard that Waves has an excellent solution as well. It’s called Nx (http://www.waves.com/plugins/nx#introducing-nx-virtual-mix-room). I haven’t used it yet but I’ve heard good things.August 28, 2017 at 12:57 pm #4759
nice! seems interesting, I’ll give it a shot. thanks Dezz!August 28, 2017 at 2:10 pm #4761Dezz AsanteKeymaster
Let us know what you think of it 🙂August 29, 2017 at 6:45 pm #4768
I’ve been reading up on the Waves NX and it sounds like it could be a very useful tool. I even saw a youtube review of the sonarworks plug-in and in it the reviewer mentioned how both of these plug-ins could be used in tandem. I’m definitely gonna download the demo for both and give ’em a shot. If anyone is interested here is the link to that youtube review https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Km2A3k0s6EYAugust 31, 2017 at 6:49 am #4802
the problem with sonar is that is works on specific types of headphones. and mine are not in the list. as for NX I can tell you I had a little bit of a problem with the installation, since it was the first Waves product I ever installed and Live was not recognising it. but the customer support was helpful and now it works. until now, it seems very promising. I will use it to do my mix and then listen on speakers as well to see if it’s as helpful as the awesome design looks.August 31, 2017 at 6:43 pm #4803
Please let us know what you think of the NX plug-in Gabriela.September 1, 2017 at 12:10 pm #4804
will do once my remix is done! 🙂September 3, 2017 at 1:09 pm #4807
FYI The Waves NX plug-in is on sale for $29 U.S. dollars. I believe the sale end in about 15 hours from the time I wrote this.September 3, 2017 at 1:15 pm #4809
you just stabbed me in the heart with a 70$ knife 🙁
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