Getting loud mixes without clipping?


#1

Im good, i am no longer having any issues.


#3

I have the same problem as you.

I’ve been mixing since 2007. I’ve watched tons of tutorials, read countless articles & other shit about mixing. I’ve watched live streams of engineers mixing songs from scratch. Learned so much that my brain starts to hurt.

I’ve even booked sessions with engineers that mixed hit songs to mix my shit so I can watch what they do. I even get the Pro Tools sessions so I can go home & study it more. Been doing this for years.

No matter what…my beats still aren’t as loud as other guys selling beats.

I’m still wondering how they get their beats so loud without clipping.

I’ve even watched some of them mix their beats & I went back & did the exact same…still dont come out as loud.

It has baffled me so much that I just stopped giving a fuck.

I mix my beats to the best of my ability & just put them out.

Understand this though…pay attention to mixed & mastered songs that have been released. Not beats.

Most of these loud beats that you hear on these beat selling sites have 0 headroom for vocals…they’ve all been mastered the hell out.

That’s not how professional engineers with hits under their belt mix records.

Follow how pro engineers work & do that.

Thats what I do.

Trying to do what other online beat sellers do…will just drive even more crazy.


#4

Are you using a limiter or maximizer on the master?


#5

Bruh, if you’re watching an engineer mix, guess what? It’s not going to be loud. If you want loudness, that’s a mastering process, which is what you’re hearing on these beats. The mix is just preparation for mastering, which you can absolutely learn techniques that will result in better masters in general. So hopefully you at least kept what you learned from those sessions.

Also, the MP3’s and WAV’s have been mastered, like you said. This is why artists buy trackouts if you have them available. These won’t be mastered. MP3’s and WAV are for demo/performance purposes. Not to be used as a final product. Sure, some soundcloud/youtube rappers might just use the MP3 or WAV, but they usually aren’t serious artists. They’re just having fun and obviously don’t care as much about the end result. I have techniques to make them sound good on a 2 track (mp3/wav), but they will never sound as good as having the trackout files.

Having the MP3/WAV mastered will compete with the other beats they hear online. You should absolutely be doing this to market your product. But, if they are working on a serious project, they will buy the trackouts. Otherwise, they’re just either having fun, or cutting corners because they aren’t as dedicated. You might say, it’s because they can’t afford the trackouts, but anyone who is dedicated will work and save the money to buy what’s needed.

BTW, you both are avoiding clipping, but clipping is a technique that is used for loudness. You just have to use it the right way. I purposely clip my drums, specifically my kicks all the time. A lot of the sound packs you buy now a days come with clipped kicks all the time. Use clipping to your advantage and you’ll get the loudness you’re looking for. None of this means I’m hitting past 0db on my master fader.

I’d also look into saturation if you want more apparent loudness without clipping if that’s the route you want to go.


#6

Of course the mix version is going to be low. Every engineer I work with also gives a loud/mastered version too for listening purposes (before sending to an actual mastering engineer).

Even these engineers loud version aren’t as loud as some of the beats I hear on these beat sites. I’ve even compared mastered songs to beats & the beats are still way louder.

I mix my beats to where the loudest peak is around -4-5db…before I apply the mastering. Still can never get loud as fuck regardless of how it’s mixed or mastered.

Question is…how?


#7

The peak doesn’t matter. It can be -1, -6, -12. As long as it’s not hitting 0, it’s all the same. What matters is crest factor.

Also, what platform are you comparing these songs with beats to. Because Spotify, and many other platforms are turning the tracks down to -14LUFS. So you’re comparing something with no limitation to -14LUFS, which is also what your mix engineer is doing, -14LUFS. So again, you’re not going to get loud tracks from your mix engineer unless you specifically tell them to. They know that your music is likely going to be turned down, so they boost it to what they believe is going to be the max loudness you’ll hear, which isn’t the case if you post on Airbit.

These beat platforms and soundcloud don’t turn your sound down, so whatever you put in is what you get. Mix engineers mix songs, not beats, so they probably wouldn’t know this without you explaining your situation, which is why I said what I said…it’s going to be low, even if they “make it loud.”

The average beat is anywhere from -10 to -8lufs. This isn’t a made up number either…a month ago I DLed 30 all of the available free beats at the top of the beatstars charts and measured them.

Crest factor is the measure between your peak and average level (dynamic range). This is why I said clipping is actually what you want, not what you avoid. In order to decrease the crest factor for -8lufs, you’re going to need to clip your peaks. You’ll notice when you look at your wavform, your highest peaks are coming from your drum hits, specifically, your kicks. Clipping off the top of those peaks can create harder hitting kicks. Then when you go in an limit/maximize, you’ll bring the level up from the rest of your sounds to narrow the gap between those sounds and your peaks. That creates the loudness you’re looking for.

Get a LUFS meter. Make sure you’re EQing out unnecessary freqs both in the low end and high end and resonant frequencies. Then you can do what I said above. Without that, you’ll get a lot of nastiness from the limiter, which is probably what’s stopping you from getting louder. You should even be cutting lows from your bass. It’s common in hip hop/trap to cut below 30hz. This doesn’t mean eliminate everything below 30…it just means attenuate those down to a lower level so that it doesn’t muffle your mix when you boost into the limiter.


#10

Yeah man, if you’re doing what I told you (what everyone has been telling you) and still have excuses to quit, no one is going to be able to convince you otherwise. Take care. For anyone else reading this…it really is as simple as what we’ve been saying. It’s not hard to make things loud, especially with all of the plugins that are designed for that exact purpose. I might sound harsh, but that’s just the reality of the situation…if you’re better at making excuses than producing, then maybe producing isn’t for you. That really applies to anything in life.


#12

There is a difference between sounding smaller vs. louder. Your kicks are small. But the overall loudness of the beat is basically the same as anyone else. If you want bigger sounding kicks, you’re going to need to clip them. And no, I don’t mean soft clipping either. I mean hard clip them because you’re using really rounded sounding kicks. Use your EQ to boost which frequencies you want to drive into clipping. I already mentioned this in the very first post…you said you tried all of these things and clearly you haven’t. I’m listening right now…you just haven’t done this.

Not only that, you even specifically said you avoid clipping. I’m just talking in circles now, so I’ll leave you at that, but I’m really just typing this for other people who might read this and are actually willing to use my advice. You can say you’ve done this all you want…my ears tell me a different story. You say people aren’t hearing you, but you’re using that as an excuse to not hear people. I took the time to listen to your beats, I hope you take the time to implement my advice.


#15

I think the sound selection with the kick and 808 is the main issue with that beat. Try switching those out. I’d turn down the main piano a couple db or so. Snare could be turned up some or layered with a clap. But I think the kick and bass should be switched out all together. I’d also add some touch up eq to the overall mix before the maximizer. One thing I like to do is turn it on and off to hear what it sounds like loud and then adjust the eq to rebalance.


#17

Happy to hear that! What did you change up?


#18

Man, really it was just everything you was saying. I kinda got caught up doing to much and trying to much for a while there. That was screwin up my sound even more. Basically I now understand that if you hard clip your kick drums, not only does it make your kicks harder, but now i can push the volume on the maximizer much more without squashing the whole beat, and retain the clarity in the mix. The thing is, i just had to find an effective way to do it. I appreciate your post cause you got me focused in on what the real issue was. Everything you said got me out of making “excuses”, and i got back to looking for a solution and trying to get better. I haven’t posted any of the new mixes yet, but i will soon.


#19

I think when I give that advice next time, I’ll remind them that they still might not nail it on their first try. It’s still a skill at the end of the day and you have to work at it. Sure I laid out the general technique, but as you know, each mix is different so, how you eq and how much you clip will vary.

You did yourself a lot of good by resting your ears and coming back the next day to hear the problems and you adjusted from there. I really have to give you credit for not giving up and sticking with it my dude. Especially because you were already so damn close! I can honestly tell you’ve been doing this for a long time, so it would have been a shame if you quit.

At the same time I understood the frustration because during the time you learned mixing, it was embedded in you and many others that clipping is not your friend, which is how I knew right off the bat what you were missing just from title of this thread.

Knowing when to use it is most important. If you’re competing with loud beats in a marketplace, then yes…you want to have comparable levels. If you’re submitting music to get mixed by a mix engineer then keep all of the dynamics. No clipping, no limiting. Let the engineer do that with their trained ears, better equipment and improved listening environment. But feel free to make your own version as well for the engineer to compare it to.

I’m excited for you man. I still do my best to learn more and improve everyday. Keep grinding and you’ll still keep improving.


#20

I quit…