My summer reading is not a crime novel this year, it’s a fantastic book on mixing using Reaper: ReaMix – Breaking the Barriers with Reaper. The large focus is on doing things in a methodical way, following a well-defined process. The first eye-opener for me is to do what the author calls pre-mix corrections. This consists of isolating all tracks individually, identifying problems (like clicks, breath noises etc.) and ironing them out first. A small but really smart detail is using separate instances of the same FX for this, so that you have one corrective EQ and a separate “boosting” EQ so that you don’t accidentally undo good previous work on a track.
The largest part of the book is focused on spatial mixing. By using panning and frequency separation (and to some extent reverb) you can make sure each instrument gets its own room without competing with the others.
The author Geoffrey Francis is very generous with concrete and practical tips and instructions, and I find myself constantly taking notes so that I don’t forget all the clever things that will enhance my mixing. Included with the book are also downloadable example projects that illustrate all of the concepts in the text.
ReaMix is available at a measly €20 which is a steal. Even better, the PDF is only €10 and makes a great read on the iPad.