Mixing & EQing Chords For More Impact

Discussion in 'Mixing and Mastering' started by MaXe, Jun 25, 2018.

  1. MaXe

    MaXe Ultrasonic

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    Hi guys,
    I wonder how you EQ your chords so they have more impact? I simply EQ my chords for not masking with other instruments but they sound dull and when I compare my chords to professionals songs, professional songs seem to have more impact like emphasizing certain frequencies but since chord progressions changes in the process of time I am not sure whether I should automate the EQ or not. I think automating EQ just makes in more complicated and might not be a practical way. In general, it is just not about chords, I wonder how professionals mix their sounds so certain frequencies have more perceived loudness than other frequencies? One way I have thought of is saturation but still saturation does not reproduce the same effect I hear in professional records. Any suggestions would be appreciated!
     
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  3. metaller

    metaller Platinum Record

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    What do you mean by chords? which instrument is it?
     
  4. MaXe

    MaXe Ultrasonic

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    By chords I mean stack of notes put on top of each other vertically and I am talking in general, not a specific instrument in mind but if you insist I would consider any Synth or Piano.
     
  5. TW

    TW Rock Star

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    You do not EQ Chords. You EQ an instrument or a sound. You do it the right way with your eqing. Make sure the instrument that plays your chords have room to breath in the frequency spectrum and is not masked.
    More impact? Sounds to me you want them to pop out more? Compression! Make them louder, put them on the stage (make other things quieter). You can try to put things behind your chord instrument and make it more upfront with the use of reverb. Saturation can make an instrument/sound more upfront.
     
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  6. DJK

    DJK Platinum Record

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    as stated above, what i put on my leads and chords is sonalksiss stero tools, it makes them nice and wide and sound gr8 in the mix, as also stated if you want the chords to be the main focus bring other elements down a bit, roll of some low end if low end heavy or roll off the highs, its a matter of taste.
     
  7. metaller

    metaller Platinum Record

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    I ask for instruments because nowadays producers know nothing or little about orchestration. Beside EQ, compression and all of those modern methods, you can use classic way to produce more impact.
    Layer the instruments above each other. There was no audio processing back in time when Beethoven wrote the 5th symphony. But he made one of the most memorable themes because all of the strings section plus clarinet play the same notes.
    [​IMG]

    However, if you insist on audio processing, try a slow attack, and fast release compression which leads into the tube or tape saturation. Then Boost the hammer click in high mid or high frequency.
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2018
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  8. bluerover

    bluerover Audiosexual

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    Try a fast 1176. Yes, orchestration and leaving things out of the mix when the chords are hitting (as much as possible). Slight sidechain compression against a few other elements (maybe not ALL of them). You could also try a transient tool on "EDM" chord stabs. Add a bit of even harmonic saturation to make it the thicker hi-fi element. I guess it does depend on if you're going for Elton John type piano chords or Avicii synth chord stabs. I'm just throwing some ideas out there to spark your imagination.
     
  9. Xupito

    Xupito Audiosexual

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    I'm sure there's some Soundtoys/Eventide plugin useful for this. Or other company equivalent.
    But for chords it's more complicated than, for instance, a solo lead.
     
  10. m9cao

    m9cao Producer

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    try multi band compressor or dynamic eq
     
  11. Strangedays

    Strangedays Newbie

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    I find with processing you only really influence the shape of the sound. How powerful it is is as mentioned arrangement. Layers, but more importantly the pitch of the layers. The more notes in the chord up and down, and variations of instruments the buggers the sound - the old famous Orchestra Hit sound found on many keyboards is just that.
     
  12. superliquidsunshine

    superliquidsunshine Audiosexual

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  13. taskforce

    taskforce Audiosexual

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    Errr, i do own SurferEQ, yes it is a pitch tracking eq but the Surf function (pitch tracking) is intended to be used on monophonic channels like vocals, bass etc., and not polyphonic. I did find a way to use it on polyphonic channels with a few catches of course. I find which frequencies i like best on my polyphonic channel, then program a mono channel of notes corresponding to those frquency boosts or cuts (or selected notes, depends on which frequencies you wanna boost or cut) exactly on the same rhythm as my guitar or piano/keys etc, put those frequencies on the programmed mono channel with SurferEQ and let it slide in surf mode, recording the automation and then copying it to my polyphonic channel. It works great and is much faster than what it soundsn like when described hehehe. :)
    Cheers mate
     
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  14. Baxter

    Baxter Audiosexual

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    Much of the "EQing" is in the composition, as @metaller points out. Other than that: Highpass. Lowpass. Attenuate the overlapping/masking frequencies (EQ and/or M/S EQ). Boost the sweetspots (EQ and/or M/S EQ). Add reverb/delay to add depth and/or width (psychoacoustics to better locate/seperate the sound from other sounds).

    Another trick to add "power" to chords are a adding a layer of short and transient sound that indicates the beginning of the chord, that tricks the mind to thinking that the chords are louder when they really aren't. Like a transient designer.
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2018
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  15. 11Fletcher

    11Fletcher Ultrasonic

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    would be easier to give some proper answer with some audio exemple, what sound do you want to sound like ? And if possible, how do you sound now ?
    Chords can sounds and have different kind of impact depending of the genre, if it's more like Viking metal, deutch big room/progressive, orchestral song or future pop.

    For electronic stuff for exemple, it's common to put some little attack sound, to add some punch, usually a white noise, but it can be some percussive element, just to add some clic in the attack. Supersaw with white noise to fill the side, and some multiband compression like OTT to fix all the layers together. With a piano, it can be different depending on the genre, again, in EDM stuff, it's usually a piano as a main sound and other pluck to fill the side, the piano sound you'll use will have a big impact, but usually it's not the best realistic sound we go for. The main used sound is usually Nexus piano, or other "EDM" oriented stuff like Avenger, but not the big pretty Kontakt Spitfire bank (which sounds great in an orchestral environment but have too much dynamic range to be use in an EDM situation, which is kind of sad IMO)
     
  16. superliquidsunshine

    superliquidsunshine Audiosexual

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    So you disagree by agreeing, LOL.
     
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