How to mix good 808's and finding right samples vs designing own?

Discussion in 'Rap, Hip-Hop, R&B' started by Brendan, May 12, 2020.

  1. Brendan

    Brendan Member

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    So I've been producing for a few years now, recently got serious last summer. Been getting better at sound design, arranging tracks, relying less on presets or tweaking presets to fit my own style. I know the essentials for 808's but it's always hit or miss. In my daw (FL 20) the 808 samples sound fantastic but after I turn loop points off, cut self, sidechain to the kick, and adjust the envelope, tune the root note, it sounds shitty. The other instruments aren't conflicting and the lowend has room for the 808. I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong. Is it poor samples? Some are from soundpacks, others from high quality sound packs.

    I match the 808 with the root note of the melody and lower it an octave. Also treat the 808 like a melody itself. Any advice would be fantastic, and if there's a way to do less work for the 808's? I know its better to design my own, and I have made my own in serum and other synths. BUT, I've seen professional producers have sampled 808's, drag them into the channel rack and it immediately sounds perfect or the bass meshes so well with the track it's like a missing puzzle piece which slides in. Again, any advice or solutions would be appreciated!
     
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  3. Satai

    Satai Rock Star

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    I'm guessing the reason their 808 sounds insta-perfect is that it was pre-prepped for the tutorial video. Yup, they do cheat like this all the time.

    For a non-cheat actually useful tutorial on some 808 mixing techniques, check Matthew Weiss' "Mixing 808s". A lot of food for thought there.
    The main ingredient you need is distortion/saturation/waveshaping, you need to add certain harmonic color to have the 808 cut through more.

    There are some libraries where their 808 already is harmonically rich due to outboard processing it went through. Pretty sure some of the best ones are from GoldBaby.
     
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  4. Kuuhaku

    Kuuhaku Platinum Record

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    The way you're explaining makes me feels like you got really bad samples, also are you doing trap music? If you'r doing trap and more dirty hip-hop styles I suggest you to be very careful on where you use sidechain, sidechaining delayed 808s and doing eq to them inst really good in some cases, almost 99% of the job I do on my 808 is just finding the right sample, tweaking it too much can cause it to sound "unatural" like, if you're using good samples they'r already made to sound good, almost 80% of the time I just correct the polarity of my kick to match the 808 and then clip my kick as I keep the 808 in -3db (I just put a soft clipper in my master and thats all :v)
    also, this pack have nice delayed 808s https://www.reddit.com/r/Drumkits/comments/fduwto/caramel_zay_808_kit/
     
  5. ProJay

    ProJay Kapellmeister

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    FAW Sublab or Splice sounds of kshmr. And as satai said you need saturation/distortion for it to pop up.
     
  6. SoundPorn

    SoundPorn Member

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    First I must say the first response is horrible lol Producers can't cheat by pre picking an 808 like what? Most of them all use the same couple 808s anyway that are variations of a Spinz, Zay, or Plugg 808. And Goldbaby doesn't have anything close to best 808s, well not for trap music.

    The genre of music you make would be really helpful because if it's Trap just go watch a Busy Works Beats tutorial. And the problem sounds like it's probably the sidechaining and the kick you pick. Check out Industry Kits Perfect 808 and Kick drum kit, also if your making Trap you don't necessarily need to sidechain. The kick should be quick enough to just delay the time adjust delay the 808 a couple samples.

    Which brings me to my next point, you're probably doing to much with the 808 if you're playing it like a melody. You should just be putting the 808 on every measure the kick hits, then move the 808 only so it's in scale with the chord. After that throw a soft clipper on the 808 and kick and you should be done. You may be over complicating it. And no it's not better to make your own 808's if you're a producer instead of a sound designer, everybody can't be everything focus on what you're good at.
     
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  7. Plainview

    Plainview Platinum Record

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    this is the worst advice ever , he is a fucking joke just listen to the beats he is making in his tutorial , its funny how people still watch this shit in 2020
     
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  8. Kuuhaku

    Kuuhaku Platinum Record

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    I agree asf
     
  9. Plainview

    Plainview Platinum Record

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    its not about the sample itself , it is really more complicated than that and depends on so many factors , a good way to get the feeling of what sounds good is to download construction kits and listen to the 808 alone and the kick alone and their combination with the rest of the beat so you understand what specifically works and in what situation
     
  10. Brendan

    Brendan Member

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    I appreciate the feedback, and will check out some of Matthew's tutorials. I apply wave-shaping a lot and occasionally distort with say decapitator but very minimal distortion. Also, checked out GoldBaby today, some of their packs were crisp. As Zeyad eLmoghazy said, it varies on the situation and that seems to be my dilemma. Music is subjective and is mostly without rules but it seems like you've gotta follow a stipulated pattern with some sounds. Sometimes the 808s work with the mix and other times against, sometimes it requires lots of tweaking and other times I add one effect and it's perfect that's what baffles me.
     
  11. Brendan

    Brendan Member

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    "Busy works BEATTSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS" if i ever hear that again, I may break whatever device its playing through. Again, I appreciate all the feedback from everyone, even the shitty advice I figured tweaking 808's can be a complicated process, but was hoping beyond hope there's a less complex way so I'm not painstakingly working on them too long and disrupting my creative process (I'm more into arrangement, sound design, fully fleshed out songs. Something producers do too much is never finish)

    I have a variety of samples from various packs like Illmind, zaytoven,among others. I never use sampled melodies, always compose my own but the kicks,hats,toms,808's, etc are soundpacks. I do mostly lofi Hip Hop, R&B, sometimes trap, and really just trying to stand out with a signature sound. How do you adjust the polarity of your kicks? I've used the soft clipper technique before but never on the master. Typically take the wave file, open a new session, then apply mastering plugins for the completed mix. (shitty CPU) I thought sidechaining was essential for any track with a 808 and kick so they don't drown each other out, and it creates a "pumping" effect.
     
  12. famouslut

    famouslut Audiosexual

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    I'd recd Sublab also. I'm not really a trap producer or anything, but it's kinda awesome; as editable as you need it to be. Stuff like being able to learn parameters (ie) distortion is great. Although ima prolly doing it wrong by doing that!

    Just use Audacity (or likely ur DAW) and choose invert. It's the same for most (all?) audio editing software.
     
  13. alex921

    alex921 Producer

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    @SoundPorn Actually gave the most solid advice in this thread, dunno why he got disliked :no:. You think these hustlers have time to put on some magic tricks? Like all of them youtube thugs rip from each other, or what have you nowadays, some wannbe 3 six maffia type beats. Even 3 6 mafia sampled from theirself and from other producers in their own hometown back in the 90s (3 6 maffia, memphis north etc invented trap in case you didnt knew)

    just do what everyone else is doing. And you will sound like they all do one day, only then your 3 years behind the current. DAWs like SubLab suck a$$ like who needs that for 808s. Its mostly clipped SIne waves anyway.
     
  14. andrescooper445

    andrescooper445 Member

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    Satai is absolutely correct regarding the pre planning and harmonic saturation. Current times demand that you pay attention to the mid-range - and the pre planning comes into play when you mix and match the feel/sound of the melody with the correct 808. Which you could already be doing with a kick. Given the simplicity of this genre I’d imagine that if you don do this your end product may mismatch. This takes going through at least a few options which sometimes they don’t do (which is what I feel would expose this)… despite having go-to zays and spinz. no sober composer would would ever throw the most basic 808 on there unless they are doing some type of time challenge. They give themselves away because of this

    I agree with soundporn regarding the sidechaining, kick selection and not overcomplicating the process. However the 808 is most definitely a melody itself or a counter melody. I feel like that goes over many heads. Depends what producer as well. This is true more now than ever.

    Also, imo busyworkbeatz has great advice on how the industry maneuvers.. but outshined in some other areas.
     
  15. Kuuhaku

    Kuuhaku Platinum Record

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    Sidechaining is useful, but sometimes the thing that makes the 808 and the kicks stand out is that little clipping that they produce together, you should use sidechain only if the kick really dont match very well with the 808 or if you want your kick to stand out a little more, but If youre doing modern trap like illmind, pierre zay and these guys, you shouldnt use sidechaining at all, it's better to find a kick that matches well with the 808 sample, sidechaining for this kind of trap isnt really needed...
    also, are you kicks sample good? they do BIG part of the real good feeling of the 808, maybe the 808 isnt even the problem at all
    If you'r using fl studio, I suggest you to normalize your 808s and do nothing more, load the kick that you want to put with it, normalize it and boost the volume knob all the way up, until it hits -0 db (this is only for the clipping on the master technique) if you kick sounds bad even with the 808 going at -6db of difference, you should try another one or try to revert the polarity of this one, also if it sounds good, feel free to boost the 808 a little bit, if you didn't have tried using soft clipping in the master I really suggest you to do, its a nice alternative way of mastering/mixing *(yea, I know this sounds strange but if you change the way you master youre changing the way you mix too, unless its a very small change)*
     
  16. Kuuhaku

    Kuuhaku Platinum Record

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    I usually set my kick at +3db and my 808 at -3db, the soft clipper on the master control the clipping and keeps the dynamics high.
    If you want to see this kind of mixing in action, just watch this video, its all about how you clip your 808s and kicks
     
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