Mixing old school

I have embarked n a project that is most challenging.I was wondering if any of you have ever tried this…
My friend and I are colaborating on a project to capture and use only live tones.

Using live accoustics of our room with minimal dynamics processing and only mastering technics after the mix is finished.

The most challenging is using 8 mics specifically chosen for their specific texture to add color to the room.

Our insane goal is to do what was done in the early days of recording and make a recording that could be played with todays music.
We use no stomp boxes and capture the true tone of the instrument.
We do use midi drums because we do not hve a drum roon.
I was wondering if any of us old guys on here remember any tricks that might help. By the way our mics closet has no mic over 300 dollars.
For you young guys you should try this it will give you an appriation to how thing were done then.

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This is definitely a thread I want in on. I’m super interested in hearing how this goes!

I did something similar a few years ago. Thinking that I might be missing something from my live sound rig, before I retired it, I patched it on an analog desk and did a mix all out of the box, it ended up sounding close to my in the box mix with less control over dynamics as I had limited eq/comp/gates and only 2 reverb units.
It was a good mix and fun to work on but ended up retiring the rig as it didn’t really add anything that exceptional to it. Every once in a while I am still patching outboard for mastering as I have a nice 2 channel analog processor with eq and opto-comp, which I use on a lot of my input tracks.
I’d be interested in following this project as well. If nothing, at least it is some fun time to get your hands on a mix and not on a mouse :slight_smile:

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The specifics are we are not using any dynamics in the live instruments and only room mics for verb.

The mics use ART tube pres and are mixed live through a home made passive boardand then on to a 1973 teac 3340 s.

the dynamics is controled by the players and room positions are chosen to enhance room accoustics.
I do use a box for mastering using Slate and Waves pluging.

it is quite interesting how much you can get with players that understand how to play dynamically, the right instruments and simple room mic manipulation.

I have a couple of solo mic captures ill post later.

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Are’t you defeating the object of the exercise then?

I am not sure.

The captures are as raw as they can be the mix has no processing and the mix is directly move to Tape. true it has saturation and come color but no more than back then. The 3 Electric Guitars are captured from an amp specifically chosen for tone and guitars as well. the 3 accoustics are miced and mixed live.

all 8 mics are placed to give color and room to the mix. The the mics balence the in the mixer to get the mix.

I add nothing than a single mastering prosessor from slate the same as mastering engneers did to vinyl.My outboard equipment is not of high enough qulity to master with.

This is very fascinating. It will be cool to see what you come up with … and by see, I mean pictures. :slight_smile: Audio clips would be great to hear what it sounds like, but pics will help us understand what you did and how you achieved it. Until then, we are just using our imaginations based on words we read on a text-based forum.

Audio and pics, please! :beerbang:

Pictures i have are the mic placements it will take a cople of weeks till we set up again we work in a friend basement and he has company thtough tbi and next weekend. His wife limits the time we can use his basement as a studio.

I understand. I was just putting in the request in the hope you would have that opportunity in the future. :yum: Whatever it is, is what it becomes. I’m just honored to see what you come up with. :bow:

The pics are supposed to look like this (for guidance):


Is that Deep Purple?

When recording Machine Head…

Sorry for the long delay on posting more to this. I am a full time Director of Engineering for a large mom and pop broadcast group and we acquired a number of station’s and it’s been busy to say the least.

Anyway I thought I’d start here with some historical tracks of the typical way most musicians begin in home studios and some pitfall to help jump start the process.

My history starts in the early 60 s around Louisville, KY. I began hanging around the the engineer of A local radio station call sign not important.

Anyway I changed tubes and stuff.

Over the years took electronics in high school built audio and transmission equipment.

That is my technical background. I will say I am a self taught mixer and approach sound from a physics perspective unlike most of you.

I did work with an accoustistian designing sound systems in the 70’s where I got most of my sound and acoustical understanding.

I felt this history is important as most of you will think many of my ideas are strange.

Anyway the Mic placement I chose in this project as well as the Mic election was not to capture sound as you do.

I chose placement one nice based on the physics of the room.

2 of mics are CAD Audio C9. mini condenser mics. These are very small mics that have a unique frequency response and sound. I use these to enhance presence and clarity to the room. When properly placed they act as upper mid boost with out using EQ.

Another Mic I use is the B2 https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/B2Prothe in omni mode placed to capture the largest room sound possible

Blending the 3 mics above if properly placed give a great room reverberation and in the case of discussion here no artificial EQ is required for any of the guitar tracks I will post over the next few weeks.

My close mics are XML 990 ribbon and V250 along with a Ride NT1 NOT NT1 A.

OTHER MICS include SM5U, SM58 SAMSUNG SM 58 CLONE and a home made “subkick” made from a coaxial 6x9 car speaker and a snare drum and other low end dynamic mics. A cool story on the "subkick that and how it works.

I hope his is interesting as I am not a typical mixer and the stuff I use is very different.


I recently did as jam recording where the musicians mixed themselves. The process was helped with the fact that it was direct thru PA, recording stereo bus, and there were no monitoring anomalies created by amps in room.
The immediacy of the playing was amazing. Unfortunately there are some bum notes and it’d have to be rectreated , hopefully we won’t lose the feel.
I recently started multitrack recording band practices. Everyone goes thru a mixer into 8 input interface, spill in drum and vocal and guitar mics…got 2 song EP out of it so far, maybe will overdub few more. It might sound a touch sub par to full studio session, but the live performance feel is there.

This is the final mix of the old school recording.

All live recording looking for feed back on mix and production

Sounds really good to me. Maybe the acoustic guitar could be a bit fuller.

How in the world did I miss this?!? You should post this on “Bash This”!
I think you definitely achieved the vibe you were after. Super cool!!

Somehow I missed this update. I like the recording. Has some Rockabilly and Surf elements to it maybe (?) but I’m not sure how to classify it. The ambiance is really interesting and nice. My only comment really is that the vocals sound much more up front and therefore make the music sound mostly “background” rather than really supporting the vocals. I guess you don’t want to add effects or processing to the voice, but pushing it back a bit might blend with the music better.

That is a great mix.
Cool song.
I think the mix is way good, would not put the voice any further back.

Very well done!