The 6 Elements Of A Mix
Every piece of modern music, meaning Rock, Pop, R&B, Rap, Country, New Age, Swing, Drum and Bass, Trance and every other genre having a strong backbeat, has six main elements to a great mix.
Balance – The volume level relationship between musical elements
Frequency Range – Having all frequencies properly represented
Panorama – Placing a musical element in the soundfield
Dimension – Adding ambience to a musical element
Dynamics – Controlling the volume envelope of a track or instrument
Interest – Making the mix special
Many mixers have only four or five of these when doing a mix, but all of these elements MUST be present for a GREAT mix, as they are all equally important.
In music that requires simply recreating an unaltered acoustic event (Classical or Jazz or any live concert recording), it’s possible that only the first four elements are needed to have a mix be considered great, but Dynamics and Interest have evolved to become extremely important elements as modern music has evolved.
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Bobby Owsinski is an author, producer, music industry veteran and technical consultant who has written numerous books covering all aspects of audio recording. For more information be sure to check out his website and blog.