Audio mixing is a combination of art, science and engineering. At Paradoxx Sound we have more than 20 years experience blending all three of these to produce great music. The other key ingredient for success is you the artist. To produce great music the artist needs to communicate his or her ideas both in the form of musical expression and in the vision for the song. We have developed the ability to understand what the artist is trying to put across to the listener. Many studios can mix your music, but it takes a special blend of engineering experience, equipment and communication skills to produce great mixes. At Paradoxx Sound you will find those skills plus the unwavering determination to make your music great.
After loading up your tracks and reviewing your written input, we push up the faders and listen to develop a vision for your song. Then we go to work adjusting dynamic range, EQ and panning to produce a cohesive rough mix. After applying basic effects and balancing out the levels, it’s time to get you the artist involved. The interaction between the artist and the engineer is the most important part of the process. With your input we can add creative touches and mix automation to bring the mix to the next level. At this point your mix is ready for the final touch… mastering. During mastering we add multi band compression, final EQ and limiting to bring your music up to the standards that are expected in the music industry today.
Equipment and Methodology
We have tried most of the major equipment out there. We started using digital audio workstations back in the early 1990’s and we have tried them all. Paradoxx Sound has selected Pyramix as our DAW. Pyramix has the best audio engine in the industry. So what does that mean? Back in the tape days you never had to worry about time alignment of your tracks unless you were syncing multiple machines. With DAW’s the audio is coming off a hard drive through many layers of processing and D to A converters. Not all DAW’s produce consistent results, but Pyramix does. Check out Pyramix on the web.
The converters are the most important part of the digital audio process. In our first studio we used Studer D19 20 bit converters which were the best at the time. Then in our second studio we stepped up to Prism Sound which is still one of the most respected converters on the market. Now in our current studio we have selected Merging Technology’s Horus. The Horus is a complete I/O system with 24 channels of A to D and D to A. It can operate at any sample rate from 44.1 to 11mhz DSD. It also has AES and MADI digital I/O. The Horus is the most transparent audio converter that we have used to date. For more check it out on Merging’s web site.
Enough about digital…plug-ins can’t do it all! At Paradoxx Sound we have put together a unique set of analog out board equipment. We have two Avalon 737’s, two Millennia SST-1’s and a Tube Tech MMC-1A . This allows us to shape the sound of drums, guitars, basses and vocals or anything else in the analog domain. With Pyramix adding an analog insert is as easy as any analog console. In addition to our channel strips we have a Roland SN-550 single ended noise reduction unit for those noisy guitar amps and a Maselec MDS-2 de-esser for vocal. The Meselec de-esser is the most transparent way to remove sibilance.
Now for effects processors. There are many great plug-ins out there, but they are all limited by available CPU power. To get the most realistic reverb and delay effects you need processing power, which is why we chose the Lexicon 960L and the TC Electronic M6000. For vintage effects we use the Eventide H3000 and the Roland R880. We also have a wide selection of top quality plug-ins at our disposal and we are not afraid to use them.
At this point we need to talk about summing. Digital summing in Pyramix is excellent, but sometimes a mix calls for more harmonic interaction in which case, we route stems to our Thermionic Culture Fat Bustard II. The Fat Bustard does things to the sound the plug-ins just can’t do.
After summing, we send the signal out to the analog mastering chain. The first stop is the Avalon 747 where we take off the sharp edges and make minor EQ and level adjustments. Then it’s on to the Tube Tech SMC-2B multiband tube compressor. From there it’s time for final EQ where we apply the services of the Millennia NSEQ-2. The final stop in the analog domain is the Maselec MPL-2 peak and high frequency limiter.
Along every step of the way we can use plug-ins or the real analog processors, which gives Paradoxx Sound unlimited flexibility to shape your sound to match your vision.
All Mixing starts with listening, and at Paradoxx Sound we have a great environment. Our control room has been accurately tuned in both frequency and phase response. We use Quested V3110 main monitors and several small monitors to simulate the real world. We also have different head phones including Sony MDR-7506, Focal Spirit and Audio-Technica ATH-M50x. This combination of monitoring options insures that your mixes will have a perfect tonal balance.
For your next project, Paradoxx Sound can combine your artistic vision and talent with our audio expertise to take your music to the next level.