Finding a balanced low end

In my struggles to get levels right in my mix I found this interesting video. Unfortunately it doesn’t actually adress the problem I want to solve: the balance between lows, mids and highs in a mix when you don’t have access to a conditioned room and perfectly flat monitors. It does however have a good solution for another problem: how to find the balance between the different parts of the low end (basically the kick and the bass).  The trick is kind of simple:

  1. Get a VU meter plugin
  2. Solo the kick drum, set its volume so the VU peaks at -3 db.
  3. Add the bass, set its volume so that (together with the kick) it peaks at 0 db.
  4. Mix the rest of song around that.

Here’s the full explanation, from