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View Full Version : My new setup..looking for some advice/positive feedback :p




ZiggyPastorius
Apr 19, 2008, 02:18 PM
So I just re-arranged my room (not that you know what it looked like before, but it was a mess.) And I wanted to get as much music-making productivity as possible with a new corner desk...Anyways, this is my desk now, set-up just like this...

http://att.macrumors.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=112800&stc=1&d=1208632056

The stereo system is what my computer speakers are now..They're not amazingly high-quality, but it's two speakers and a subwoofer, and it sounds so much better than my crappy old computer speakers (I can't afford anything really nice...) and so I have my Macbook (which goes right under it, where those cables are) hooked up to those for audio, and I have it hooked to the monitor for dual-monitor action...I use Logic express and am getting an Apogee Duet here pretty soon, for more recording capabilities...Anyways, my question. Is there any way I could optimise my productivity on the desk, some re-arranging, et cetera? Any advice for stuff I could buy (not too expensive) that would really help (not just aesthetically) my music productivity? I considered Jam Packs, but that's a maybe. Anyways, any advice, or feedback on my setup here is appreciated :) Thanks. I'm almost 17 years old, by the way.



theapex
Apr 19, 2008, 09:00 PM
congrats on the new setup. Glad you like it and stay excited and motivated. Enjoying your environment is a key to making good music. (you won't want to stay long, if you don't like being in there).

Anyway, only thing I can think of right off the bat is this:

Since you are using your stereo system as your computer speakers they are probably going to give you a very colored (opposite of flat) sound in your mixes. So once you mix make CDs and listen to your mixes on other speakers to get a feel for how you are doing with your mix. Learn your speakers and know what is really too much bass or not enough...

what may seem like a good mix or a good sound on those speakers may not be at all what you hear once you get on another pair....

make sense?:)

let me know if I can help you any. they other people on here are nice and have helped me out alot.

what kind of music are you doing?

ZiggyPastorius
Apr 19, 2008, 09:17 PM
congrats on the new setup. Glad you like it and stay excited and motivated. Enjoying your environment is a key to making good music. (you won't want to stay long, if you don't like being in there).

Anyway, only thing I can think of right off the bat is this:

Since you are using your stereo system as your computer speakers they are probably going to give you a very colored (opposite of flat) sound in your mixes. So once you mix make CDs and listen to your mixes on other speakers to get a feel for how you are doing with your mix. Learn your speakers and know what is really too much bass or not enough...

what may seem like a good mix or a good sound on those speakers may not be at all what you hear once you get on another pair....

make sense?:)

let me know if I can help you any. they other people on here are nice and have helped me out alot.

what kind of music are you doing?

Everything I do in Logic is Electronic and remixing (also electronic/industrial...that sort of thing). I usually test my songs in less adept speakers, (usually my Macbook speakers, as they're the worst ones I can think of that I own) to make sure everything checks out. I am enjoying my new setup, and I was overdue for a change.

Anyways, I'll do that :) If you'd ever like to talk music, just PM me or drop me an email if you want (I can give it in PM). Always looking for things to take up time :p

[Shameless plug]By the way, anybody that comes here: http://noradiodjd.net/IP/eastegg1.mp3 that is the first project in my new setup..the first track off the next Industrial Platypus album entitled "Something More Creative." Writing is underway now, so if anyone's interested, they can listen to that, or go to www.myspace.com/industrialplatypus for some of my older work.[/shameless plug]

Actually, while I'm thinking about it..Can anyone recommend me some good books on learning some of the finer points of Logic? I'm getting the basic thing going on, so I can use it somewhat effectively..but I'm sure there are things I don't understand that I could make more use of.

theapex
Apr 19, 2008, 10:18 PM
Everything I do in Logic is Electronic and remixing (also electronic/industrial...that sort of thing). I usually test my songs in less adept speakers, (usually my Macbook speakers, as they're the worst ones I can think of that I own) to make sure everything checks out. I am enjoying my new setup, and I was overdue for a change.

Anyways, I'll do that :) If you'd ever like to talk music, just PM me or drop me an email if you want (I can give it in PM). Always looking for things to take up time :p

[Shameless plug]By the way, anybody that comes here: http://noradiodjd.net/IP/eastegg1.mp3 that is the first project in my new setup..the first track off the next Industrial Platypus album entitled "Something More Creative." Writing is underway now, so if anyone's interested, they can listen to that, or go to www.myspace.com/industrialplatypus for some of my older work.[/shameless plug]

Actually, while I'm thinking about it..Can anyone recommend me some good books on learning some of the finer points of Logic? I'm getting the basic thing going on, so I can use it somewhat effectively..but I'm sure there are things I don't understand that I could make more use of.


you did that track? sounds pretty good to me...at least through my mac book speakers...

creative at least!!!

ZiggyPastorius
Apr 19, 2008, 10:26 PM
you did that track? sounds pretty good to me...at least through my mac book speakers...

creative at least!!!

Thank you very much :) The Industrial Platypus project is aimed solely at free music, and I give everything out one way or another for free. A lot of it is pretty amateur stuff, but really, I just want people to listen...If I get one person a month that says, "Hey, Dustin, I listened to some Industrial Platypus. It's pretty cool, man," then all the time and money I've put into it (quite a bit) is worth it to me.

Glad you like it :) That particular track is in "demo" stage right now, and was released as an "Easter egg" for the "fans" :p I'll look into producing (making it more professional sounding/balancing audio levels/mixing/et cetera) before I release the album as a whole.

junior
Apr 20, 2008, 12:54 AM
Thank you very much :) The Industrial Platypus project is aimed solely at free music, and I give everything out one way or another for free. A lot of it is pretty amateur stuff, but really, I just want people to listen...If I get one person a month that says, "Hey, Dustin, I listened to some Industrial Platypus. It's pretty cool, man," then all the time and money I've put into it (quite a bit) is worth it to me.

Glad you like it :) That particular track is in "demo" stage right now, and was released as an "Easter egg" for the "fans" :p I'll look into producing (making it more professional sounding/balancing audio levels/mixing/et cetera) before I release the album as a whole.

Is it mono-like for a reason? I quite like it, but it would be a lot nicer in my mind if you spread your mix out. Obviously ignore me if that's your style! (and there's nothing wrong with that.)

ZiggyPastorius
Apr 20, 2008, 01:05 AM
Is it mono-like for a reason? I quite like it, but it would be a lot nicer in my mind if you spread your mix out. Obviously ignore me if that's your style! (and there's nothing wrong with that.)

Ah, nevermind, I gotcha. (It's late, don't worry x_x). Well, a lot of my music is built line-by-line. As in, I like to write a line, repeat it, and work over it..Perhaps that's what you're referring to. I tried to break from that a little bit, so most of the lines change every measure or couple of measures. I could be wrong, though. I guess I never really thought about it too much and just kind of went with it.

Out of curiosity, how exactly does one go about "spreading their mix out?" :p I really don't understand all that much.

ZiggyPastorius
Apr 20, 2008, 01:58 AM
Is this "spreading my mix out"? Or do I have the wrong idea?

http://noradiodjd.net/IP/secret.mp3

Ah, wait...Perhaps getting a more stereophonic sound would require me to have more control over my left/right speakers, i.e. where each instrument, part of the song, et cetera goes, speaker-wise? I'm just grabbing at straws here, because I don't know how to make it sound more "stereophonic," but, if I were to say, take one of the instruments coming in, and control it so I can move it back and forth between the left and right speakers, would that be something that'd aid in making it feel more like it's surrounding you or whatever?

junior
Apr 20, 2008, 02:08 AM
Ah, nevermind, I gotcha. (It's late, don't worry x_x). Well, a lot of my music is built line-by-line. As in, I like to write a line, repeat it, and work over it..Perhaps that's what you're referring to. I tried to break from that a little bit, so most of the lines change every measure or couple of measures. I could be wrong, though. I guess I never really thought about it too much and just kind of went with it.

Out of curiosity, how exactly does one go about "spreading their mix out?" :p I really don't understand all that much.

I wasn't talking about your arrangement or anything, don't worry! What you've done, composition-wise, is great. I was talking about the mix only.

When I said 'spread the mix':
In real basic terms, it simply means panning each track to give the music balance. For example on a real basic mix, bass in the middle, gtr to the left, one cymbal each to the left and right, bass drum middle, snare maybe slightly to the left or right, etc, etc.
What you're doing is electronic music, so it's different, I know, but a simple, very basic way of creating your mix for say a rock band, would be to imagine watching them perform right in front of you on a stage. Imagine where the guitarist x2, drummer, bassist, vocalist, keyboardist, etc are positioned on stage. Then pan your tracks accordingly to that image. Very basic, but you get the gist.
Right now, if you sit in front of your speakers and listen to your tracks, you'll likely find that all your sounds are sitting right in the middle. Now listen to your favorite track by an artist you like. Listen carefully and see where each sound is coming from.
You're working in the world of stereo, so try to make the most of it, but there never is a perfect mix, so experiment and see what suits your style best.

ZiggyPastorius
Apr 20, 2008, 02:12 AM
I wasn't talking about your arrangement or anything, don't worry! What you've done, composition-wise, is great. I was talking about the mix only.

When I said 'spread the mix':
In real basic terms, it simply means panning each track to give the music balance. For example on a real basic mix, bass in the middle, gtr to the left, one cymbal each to the left and right, bass drum middle, snare maybe slightly to the left or right, etc, etc.
What you're doing is electronic music, so it's different, I know, but a simple, very basic way of creating your mix for say a rock band, would be to imagine watching them perform right in front of you on a stage. Imagine where the guitarist x2, drummer, bassist, vocalist, keyboardist, etc are positioned on stage. Then pan your tracks accordingly to that image. Very basic, but you get the gist.
Right now, if you sit in front of your speakers and listen to your tracks, you'll likely find that all your sounds are sitting right in the middle. Now listen to your favorite track by an artist you like. Listen carefully and see where each sound is coming from.
You're working in the world of stereo, so try to make the most of it, but there never is a perfect mix, so experiment and see what suits your style best.

I understand. Only problem is, is I don't know how to use Logic well enough to know how to really control all that stuff. I'll spend some time working on it, and I think I may get a big book here next weekend on how to use Logic. Any recommendations? :) Any recommendations or help with the program is greatly appreciated. Thanks for the feedback!

junior
Apr 20, 2008, 02:13 AM
Is this "spreading my mix out"? Or do I have the wrong idea?

http://noradiodjd.net/IP/secret.mp3

Ah, wait...Perhaps getting a more stereophonic sound would require me to have more control over my left/right speakers, i.e. where each instrument, part of the song, et cetera goes, speaker-wise? I'm just grabbing at straws here, because I don't know how to make it sound more "stereophonic," but, if I were to say, take one of the instruments coming in, and control it so I can move it back and forth between the left and right speakers, would that be something that'd aid in making it feel more like it's surrounding you or whatever?

Listen, I'm really, really sorry for messing with your head!
My complete and utter mistake.
The engineer that used my studio yesterday had messed around with my mix buffer and the signal coming out was completely mono!
I haven't listened to your track properly yet, because after I figured that out I had to post this ASAP before your head exploded due to my nonsense!
Sorry!:(

junior
Apr 20, 2008, 02:20 AM
Okay, just listened to eastegg1 again.
A lot better! Ha.
Anyway. I think you generally had stuff either in the center or panned hard left and right, with not much in between.

I don't use Logic, but I imagine you'll have a mix window with the pan right above the faders. Mess around with them and see where that takes you.

ZiggyPastorius
Apr 20, 2008, 11:43 AM
Okay, just listened to eastegg1 again.
A lot better! Ha.
Anyway. I think you generally had stuff either in the center or panned hard left and right, with not much in between.

I don't use Logic, but I imagine you'll have a mix window with the pan right above the faders. Mess around with them and see where that takes you.

All rightie, I'll look into it, and thanks :p No worries on the messing with my head thing.

By the way, update: The demos of tracks 1-5 of Something More Creative are underway...Track one is a 31 second long intro entitled "Waking From a Deep Sleep." which leads into the track you know as eastegg1 which is actually entitled "Yawning and putting your clothes on, forgetting to shower." After that, I have a track entitled "Down the stairs you go," which is a 22 second long transitional song that consists of bass drum hits that sound like stairs someone is walking down before a faint crash symbol and you hear "oof" and some dialogue. It then continues down the stairs before you hear four acoustic chords/double stops which lead into the acoustic chords at the beginning of the fourth track entitled "The bravest brevity." Apparently, this track is meant (story/titlewise) to be a short time between the stairs and the next track entitled "Dumb-struck as she grabs you at the bottom of the stairs and begins to remove your clothing." Industrial Platypus is known for really random track names such as my favourite "If my ass was a drum set, you'd be Buddy Rich," which makes obscure sexual references using big figures in jazz drumming :p. The titles are just going to be a big story following that same idea, so not much creativity there, just some fun. Anyways, that's the update so far on Something More Creative..not that anyone cares, just thought I'd share :p Before I release this album, but after I finish all the music, I'm going to work on that stereophonic sound stuff and make it sound a bit more professional (hopefully). Anyways, update done. :)