Top products from r/edmproduction
We found 253 product mentions on r/edmproduction. We ranked the 627 resulting products by number of redditors who mentioned them. Here are the top 20.
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1. Music Theory for Computer Musicians
Sentiment score: 23
Number of reviews: 36
Music Theory For Computer MusiciansMany DJs, gigging musicians, and electronic music producers understand how to play their instruments or make music on the computer, but they lack the basic knowledge of music theory needed to take their music-making to the next level and compose truly professional ...
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2. Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio (Sound On Sound Presents...)
Sentiment score: 17
Number of reviews: 30
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3. Dance Music Manual, Second Edition: Tools, Toys, and Techniques
Sentiment score: 9
Number of reviews: 19
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5. Sony MDR7506 Professional Large Diaphragm Headphone
Sentiment score: 12
Number of reviews: 14
Neodymium magnets and 40 millimeter drivers for powerful, detailed soundClosed ear design provides comfort and outstanding reduction of external noises9.8 foot cord ends in gold plated plug and it is not detachable; 1/4 inch adapter includedFolds up for storage or travel in provided soft caseFrequen...
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6. Audio-Technica ATH-M50x Professional Studio Monitor Headphones, Black, Professional Grade, Critically Acclaimed, With Detachable Cable
Sentiment score: 8
Number of reviews: 11
Critically acclaimed sonic performance praised by top audio engineers and pro audio reviewersProprietary 45 millimeter large aperture drivers with rare earth magnets and copper clad aluminum wire voice coilsExceptional clarity throughout an extended frequency range, with deep, accurate bass response...
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8. Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 (1st GENERATION) USB Recording Audio Interface
Sentiment score: 7
Number of reviews: 10
CHECK OUT THE NEW 2ND GENERATION MODEL BELOWExcellent digital performanceRugged metal unibody caseFocusrite Scarlett 2i2 USB audio interface, truly portable interfaceIncludes an authorization code for Ableton Live Lite, Scarlett Plug-in Suite (RTAS/AU/VST), Red 2 & Red 3 Plug-in Suite (AAX/AU/VST), ...
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9. Harmony for Computer Musicians
Sentiment score: 6
Number of reviews: 10
"Teaches DJs, gigging musicians, and electronic music producers the musical harmony concepts they need to become complete musicians.""Uses the MIDI keyboard environment and today's computer composing and recording software, such as Pro Tools, Reason, and Ableton Live, to teach concepts."Includes a c...
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10. Music Habits - The Mental Game of Electronic Music Production: Finish Songs Fast, Beat Procrastination and Find Your Creative Flow
Sentiment score: 5
Number of reviews: 7
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11. PreSonus AudioBox USB 2x2 Audio Interface - Includes Studio One
Sentiment score: 4
Number of reviews: 7
Bus-powered USB audio and MIDI interface24-bit resolution, 44.1 and 48 kHz sampling rate - NEW VERSION goes to 96 kHz2 combo mic/instrument inputs with high-performance, low-noise, high-headroom mic preamplifiersZero-latency analog monitoringIncludes free download of Studio One 3 Artist DAW software...
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12. The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles
Sentiment score: 3
Number of reviews: 7
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14. beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO 80 Ohm Over-Ear Studio Headphones in black. Enclosed design, wired for professional recording and monitoring
Sentiment score: 4
Number of reviews: 7
Closed over-ear headphones, ideal for professional recording and monitoringPerfect for studio and stage recordings thanks to their pure, high-resolution soundThe soft, circumaural and replaceable velour ear pads ensure high wearing comfortHard-wearing, durable and robust workmanship Made in Germany....
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15. Mastering Audio: The Art and the Science
Sentiment score: 6
Number of reviews: 7
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16. Akai Professional MPK Mini MKII – 25 Key USB MIDI Keyboard Controller With 8 Drum Pads, 8 Assignable Q-Link Knobs and Pro Software Suite Included
Sentiment score: 3
Number of reviews: 6
Total Control Wherever You Go - USB MIDI keyboard controller with 25 velocity-sensitive keys and octave up / down buttons to access the full melodic range – perfect virtual synthesizer controlExpress Yourself - Innovative 4-way thumbstick for dynamic pitch and modulation MIDI control, plus a built...
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17. Zoom ZH1 H1 Handy Portable Digital Recorder (Black)
Sentiment score: 4
Number of reviews: 6
Stereo X/Y mic configuration captures perfect stereo imagesSame frequency and SPL handling as popular Zoom H2Records Broadcast WAV (BWF) at 96kHz/48kHz/44.1kHz at 16-bit or 24-bitRecords MP3 from 48 to 320kbps for maximum recording timeHi-Speed USB 2.0 port
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18. Sennheiser HD280PRO Headphones (old model)
Sentiment score: 3
Number of reviews: 5
Dynamic, closed ear headphones with up to 32 dB attenuation of outside soundLightweight and comfortable, ergonomic design, Cord Length 3.3 9.8 feet CoiledExtended frequency response and warm, natural sound reproductionAround the ear design with padded earcupsEarpads, headband padding, and audio...
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19. Drum Programming: A Complete Guide to Program and Think Like a Drummer
Sentiment score: 2
Number of reviews: 5
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20. AKAI Professional LPK25 | USB-powered MIDI Keyboard with 25 Velocity-Sensitive Synth Action Keys for Laptops (Mac & PC), Editing Software included
Sentiment score: 2
Number of reviews: 5
Production in your Pocket - 13-inch, slim-line laptop performance keyboard with 25 velocity-sensitive mini-keyboard keys for playing melodies, bass lines, chords and moreFull Range Performance - dedicated octave up and down buttons to increase the keyboard to the full melodic range plus a sustain bu...
Okay here's the list. I spend some time on this. If you have any specific questions, let me know:)
Making Music: 74 Creative Strategies - Dennis DeSantis
This is a fantastic book. Each page has a general idea on boosting creativity, workflow, and designing sounds and tracks. I recommend you read and digest one of the tips per day and really think about applying them.
Music Theory for Computer Musicians - Michael Hewitt
Really easy to digest book on music theory, as it applies to your DAW. Each DAW is used in the examples, so it is not limited to a specific program. Highly recommend this for someone starting out with theory to improve their productions.
Secrets of Dance Music Production - David Felton
This book I recently picked up and so far it's been quite good. It goes over all the different elements of what make's dance music, and get's quite detailed. More geared towards the beginner, but it was engaging nonetheless. It is the best 'EDM specific' production book I have read.
Ocean of Sound - David Troop
Very well written and interesting book on ambient music. Not only does David go over the technical side and history of ambiance and musical atmospheres, he speaks very poetically about creating these soundscapes and how they relate to our interpersonal emotions.
On Audio Engineering:
Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio - Mike Senior
In my opinion, this is the best mixing reference book for both beginners and intermediate producers. Very in-depth book that covers everything from how to set-up for accurate listening to the purpose of each mixing and mastering plug-in. Highly recommended.
Zen and the Art of Mixing - Mixerman
Very interesting read in that it deals with the why's more than the how's. Mixerman, a professional audio engineer, goes in detail to talk about the mix engineer's mindset, how to approach projects, and how to make critical mixing decisions. Really fun read.
The Mixing Engineer's Handbook - Bobby Owinski
This is a fantastic companion book to keep around. Not only does Owinski go into great technical detail, he includes interviews from various audio engineers that I personally found very helpful and inspiring.
On the Industry:
All You Need to Know About the Music Business - Donald S. Passman
This book is simply a must read for anyone hoping to make a professional career out of music, anyone wanting to start their own record label, or anyone interested in how the industry works. It's a very informative book for any level of producer, and is kept up-to-date with the frequent revisions. Buy it.
Rick Rubin: In the Studio - Jake Brown
Very interesting read that is a semi-biographical book on Rick Rubin. It is not so personal as it is talking about his life, experiences, and processes. It does get quite technical when referring to the recording process, but there are better books for technical info. This is a fun read on one of the most successful producers in history.
Behind the Glass - Howard Massey
A collection of interviews from a diverse range of musicians who speak about creativity, workflows, and experiences in the music industry. Really light, easy to digest book.
The War of Art - Steven Pressfield
This is a must-read, in my opinion, for any creative individual. It is a very philosophical book on dealing with our own mental battles as an artist, and how to overcome them. Definitely pick this one up, all of you.
This is Your Brain on Music - Daniel S. Levitin
A book written by a neurologist on the psychology of music and what makes us attached to it. It's a fairly scientific book but it is a very rewarding read with some great ideas.
On Personal Growth and Development:
How to Win Friends and Influence People - Dale Carnegie
Although this seems like an odd book for a music producer, personally I think this is one of the most influential books I've ever read. Knowing how to be personable, effectively network, and form relationships is extremely important in our industry. Whether it be meeting and talking to labels, meeting other artists, or getting through to A&R, this book helps with all these areas and I suggest this book to all of you.
7 Habits of Highly Effective People - Stephen R. Covey
Similar to the recommendation above, although not directly linked to music, I assure you reading this book will change your views on life. It is a very engaging and practical book, and gets you in the right mindset to be successful in your life and music career. Trust me on this one and give it a read.
Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience - Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
You know the feeling when you're really in the groove of jamming out and all worries tend to slip away for those moments? That is the 'Optimal Experience' according to the author. This book will teach you about that experience, and how to encourage and find it in your work. This is a very challenging, immersive, and enlightening read, which deals with the bigger picture and finding happiness in your work and life. Very inspiring book that puts you in a good mindset when you're doing creative work.
The Art of Work - Jeff Goins
A very fascinating book that looks at taking your passion (music in our case) and making the most of it. It guides you on how to be successful and turn your passion into your career. Some very interesting sections touching on dealing with failure, disappointment, and criticism, yet listening to your intuition and following your passion. Inspiring and uplifting book to say the least.
Phew. That was a lot of work. Hopefully you guys get some usefulness out of this list. This is put together after years of reading dozens upon dozens of books on these topics.
Note: All the books I recommend are expensive and I suggest you torrent them before buying them to make sure you like their style. Then if you decide to use them buy them of course. The vocabulary used in the book can be a real bitch too, but if you stick with it and google the words you don't know, it'll be worth it.
I've self studied classical and pop music, even composed a few rondos and sonatas in my time. The easiest book you can read is Harmony for Computer Musician http://www.amazon.ca/Harmony-Computer-Musicians-Michael-Hewitt/dp/1435456726
It explains everything in piano roll. It's one of the first book I read and the only thing I didn't like about it is that it left me with so many unanswered questions. It will teach you how to form and use all chords.
It takes probably about 20 hours to go through the book with no prior knowledge. I don't recommend this book unless the only time you want to invest is 20 hours. Knowing only 50% of theory can really restrict and fuck with your mind.
The other books I'll recommend are written in music notation, but the thing with music theory books is that you don't need to know music notation, just look at the examples you want, and slowly transcribe them into pianoroll. It takes me like 5 minutes to read an 8 bars music notation (slow as fuck) and it didnt prevent me form learning all my classical knowledge from theory textbooks with music notation.
So if you want a real and full unrestricted understanding of western music, from classical to pop to EDM, I'd recommend this book http://www.amazon.ca/Harmony-Voice-Leading-Edward-Aldwell/dp/0495189758/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1381010907&amp;sr=1-1&amp;keywords=harmony+and+voice+leading
The difference with this books and the other one, is that it goes through all exceptions you will see in western music, so you see that almost anything is possible in music, and after you've finished the book you won't really have any questions per say regarding theory. Looking at a midi from a beatles song or a mozart's song won't really puzzle you.
The book probably takes about 200 hours to go through from start to end with no prior knowledge. I highly recommend it. Even if you start now and it takes you 10 years to finish it.
Now that you know everything about harmony, you might want to end your learning here, and that would be fine. This would allow you to create your own style.
But you also might to be able to analyze and imitate a composer or style that you like. You might still be confused about why a composer decided to use which harmony in the verse and which harmony in the chorus, and which harmony in the bridge, and which harmony before the chorus, etc. You might also be confused about how to create your melodic motives, how long should they be? how many times should they repeat? Why should my bridge be 12 bars or 8 bars? Why should my chorus be in a different key? Why did he use the same melodic motif (pattern) twice and then then the harmonic rhytmn accelerated before the chorus?
For this I recommend this book http://www.amazon.ca/Classical-Form-Functions-Instrumental-Beethoven/dp/019514399X/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1381011568&amp;sr=1-2&amp;keywords=classical+form+caplin
It also takes about 200 hours to go through (and that is if you have prior knowledge of harmony). After that composition of classical music won't have much secret to you. You'll know how to write a sonata and rondo, which most pop music is a simplified version of. I highly recommend this if you really want to be able to compose highly musical pieces, maybe something similar to video game music, or film score. I highly recommend reading at least the few chapters, where they talk about how to form 8 bars sections and ABA' sections (which most pop is based on).
Keep in mind that those 2 books are timeless and their information takes you from complete beginner to advanced. They are like bibles. So even if you buy them are read 1 chapter per month for 10 years, it will be invaluable to your musicianship. Like I'm sure you all know, music is an endless learning experience, so don't be intimiated with their size and complexity.
Now after reading that you want to get back to pop music but your brain is all about classical now (which is like western pop but on steroids). Don't worry, now that you know how to analyze classical, you will be able to understand and analyze most type of music. I would go with the classics and read those analysis of the beatles songs to come back full circle and write pop/EDM music with simple form. http://www.icce.rug.nl/~soundscapes/DATABASES/AWP/awp-notes_on.shtml
You can try reading the beatles analysis without prior knowledge, but a lot of the vocabulary you won't understand. You could also skip the Classical Form book and skip strait to the beatles analysis but then again, you might not fully understand what you're reading.
If anyone is interested I've made some video tutorial on the topic (it doesn't go in depth like the books) http://www.youtube.com/user/DaveCoutureMusic
And here's some examples of classical pieces I've composed (I dont play any instrument and learned everything from books by myself):
Also anyone that wants to PM for tips or get me on facebook if you have questions, I'm always glad to help.
Books I have read that helped me, loosely in the order I read them:
As a lot of people have mentioned, you don't need a lot of fancy gear. I would suggest a small midi keyboard and a decent pair of headphones. Those two things are the only thing I use every day. Once you get familiar with production and decide it's something to really invest your time/money in, then you can branch out with more gear.
After you decide to get more gear, I would suggest the Komplete 9 Bundle which will have pretty much everything you'll ever need forever.
Aside from the Syntorial you mentioned on learning sound design, I would look into doing Hooktheory's daily challenge for ear training. I highly suggest doing this every day until you can 100% the beginner one and do pretty good on intermediate. Learning how chords and intervals sound in relation to a melody is absolutely invaluable when composing quickly.
Additional learning can be found on Coursera for free. I highly recommend you take these courses when they are available.
Introduction to Music Production - Discusses the signal chain, how to work in a DAW, and the basics of synths and effects.
Developing your Musicianship - I am doing this one right now. It's basic music theory and ear training, very informative! It's super light on coursework and the videos aren't long so I recommend jumping in and catching up if you can.
Songwriting - This might not be in your wheelhouse, but it focuses on writing lyrics and creating a song holistically: making sure every part means something and reinforces the main thoughts of the song.
Fundamentals of Music Theory - I haven't taken this one yet, but it's coming up in a few weeks. I'm very excited about it.
Seriously, if you have any questions about anything I would be happy to help. I've been writing music for over 15 years now and I love teaching. Feel free to PM me with anything, whether it be related to gear, theory, composition, arrangement, finding creativity. It's always fun to help a newbie along :)
Best of luck!
A desktop is going to be more robust and upgradable - more powerful cpu for the money, more max ram, more inputs, more storage, etc.
A laptop is portable. That's really the only advantage, but it's a huge one. From gigging to sitting on the couch to field recording, never underestimate how big portability is.
Realistically you'd want both, which one you pick would be how you value your tradeoffs. If you already own a laptop (most people have something these days), that might be plenty for the few times you'd need to move around. Or if you already have a pretty great desktop, maybe you'd rather do a cheap ram upgrade and then put the rest of the cash in a nice laptop.
For specifics: ram, cpu, drive, connections. Those are going to be your main concerns with a computer. RAM is going to allow you a larger buffer for things like samples and simultaneous tracks. CPU will determine the amount of real time processing for VSTs and plugins. Drive space is where you keep it all. The faster the better - an SSD for actual working storage and a large HDD for long term project storage is ideal. Connections are just things like USB, Firewire, whatever. Not hugely important unless you're using outboard equipment that requires it. Most everything is USB these days.
For a real basic outline: any computer made in the last couple years is probably ok. i3 or i5 cpu, 4-8GB ram, 250GB SSD/1TB HDD would be a really cheap, basic setup, and will work just fine for Ableton/FL/whatever. Ideally, you're going to want the fastest/most crap you can jam in there - i7 cpu, 16 or 32GB RAM, 500GB-1TB SSD/2-4TB HDD (or combo thereof). It's super easy to add drives and ram after the fact, so there's that. Don't feel like you have to do it all at once.
You're also probably going to want some kind of audio interface. A Focusrite 2i2 is a basic USB audio interface that will get decent quality sound in and out of your computer for a low price. If you want MIDI, you'll need a different/beefier unit. There's lots of USB interfaces out there. Check out M-Audio, Behringer, Presonus and a bunch of others.
So... your only technique in mixing is moving your faders?
I don't want to sound rude, but that's not enough to get your mix to sound good. It's only going to get you a starting balance.
I'm not going to write a book here, but I'd like to give you a short overview of what concepts an average mixing process comprises of (in a nutshell and NOT comprehensive,... there's enough information out there to learn about each topic).
Seriously, educate yourself on mixing and your sound will get an enormous boost. There's a ton of resources out there, including some of my favorites:
With regards to mastering, I would really consider sending your mix to an external mastering engineer. You will get a much better result, not only because these people specialise in what they can do, but a second pair of ears is always a good idea.
Hope you find this useful & best of luck!
You basically need to do two things: 1) start analyzing music that you like, both its form and function (harmony, for instance), and 2) start to study the art and science of mixing. Get a good book on the subject like Mix Smart or even The Dance Music Manual and start studying.
Mixing your tracks well can turn a okay song into a serious floor-shaker simply by virtue of significantly increasing its production quality. A simple tune that sounds amazing can have a huge emotional impact on the listener, and so much the better if the music is really well written to begin with.
This, of course, is where the analysis comes in. Try to identify why you like the tracks that you like. Is it the way the songs build? Then replicate the form of the song. Is it the way the harmony makes you feel? Then learn how to play that harmony and try to understand what's happening from a theoretical point. In my opinion, you should take it upon yourself to learn basic music theory at the minimum, but if you have a good ear you probably don't need to fret about it too much. Producers that can read and write music aren't too common (the really good ones almost always do, though).
For a while, you'll probably just sound like the producers that you like, but eventually you'll begin to internalize what you've learned and your "voice" will develop. It a natural progression as an artist to mimic your heroes — don't fight it.
Well, I'm sitting here loading 23 dvd's of my new sample library, so I have some time to write :)
First of all I'm going to cite ITB gain staging honestly in digital you don't have to gain stage unless your effects plugins have an assumed range... slate (which does make input level assumptions) really hammered this home to me on the first project I did.
Gain staging is boring and takes a bit of time (and you have to revisit it if of you put in lots of piano or fortissimo sections after you set it initially), but it makes the mix go a lot faster. It also solves the issue of "crap this VST patch is way loud!"
I use live, so track routing may be specific to that.
Source (either audio, or instrument) -> sonalksis freeg to bring source to -18db RMS -> slate vtm -> slate vcc channel -> (optional side chain compression) -> (optional instrument compression, like to make a snare sound different)-> (optional effects like reverb or eq) -> output routed to a bus or group
bus or group -> slate vcc bus -> compressor for that instrument type / group (like FG-Grey for drums, FG-Red for synths) -> hybrid static/dynamic EQ here (which is really a mutliband compressor/expander)
bus or group always also goes to a dummy track (with no output) that has an instance of MMultiAnalyzer on it (for finding collisions and/or relative loudness of the groups). I do this on a dummy track so you can see the level after the output of the groups or bus's fader, ie, what the level is going into the master channel.
when mixing I first set the loudness within a group, and the ride the faders/automate levels among groups to balance the mix.
freeG-> slate vtm -> slate vcc -> MAutoDynamicEQ -> compressor 1 (usually slate fg-mu) set to barely move the needle off of -1db -> compressor 2 (usually fg-red) -> very fast compressor (built in or stillwell the rocket) at 1.5 ratio ~-9db to -12db threshold (for the fast stuff, think of it as the knee before the limiter) -> ozone (limiting and dithering only, with no gain and -0.30 for target) -> MLoudnessAnalyzer (for LUFS EBU R128 loudness for final mix check)
So to answer your question, since I almost always do my main compression via glue / bus compression on a group or bus, I would eq on the individual channel, before the compressor, if I considered it "part of changing the noise of that instrument." Compression for "make it fit in the mix and make it louder" is always handled on a bus, and The Glue compressor as well as VBC are really good for that -- a lot of people don't seem to know that's what "the glue" is made for.
Also, yes, that's three compressors in a row on the master chain. The reason is for the reaction speed differences, and coloration.
I don't use a limiter for the final gain stage, it's just there to prevent clipping. I try not to let the limiter hit more than 1.5 or 2db -- at 3db or more it's definitely hurting the mix even with IRC III or Elephant
I think you can see this all in action on a project here:
Books I can't recommend enough:
TL;DR There's more than one way to do it, but after I read some books I tried a new way (to me) that I used on my most recent project and thought it was great for producing a nice loud (but not sausage) master.
My PC is high end though, on my older pc I couldn't run all this stuff at the same time.
Depends on what you want to do. This seems to be a great consumer product but I wouldn't be sure that this is a right choice for a producer. From all the reviews I've read, it sounds good, but that's not what you want as a producer, you want it to sound true. It's the same case as with the bass in your headphones. You want a true sound, not something that is made pleasing to the ear. You need to hear your mix clearly without boosts in certain frequencies, you need to hear your mistakes so you can fix them. Plus when the bass is artificially boosted in your headphones, it makes by default the low mids and mids distorted and muddy, thus hurting your ability to truly hear what's going on in the music.
Second thing is that this interface doesn't have any inputs, so you can't use it for recording at all. But if you don't ever plan on using microphones for recording vocal lines, samples of whatever, talking, perhaps collaborating musician's instruments, then it shouldn't bother you. (I'd recommend having them just in case anyway)
One more thing that you might appreciate in the future is a separate output for headphones and for monitors. Once you get them, you'd be glad you don't have to unplug them every time you want to use headphones.
In the end, I'd recommend going for a traditional audio interface. Those things are made for producing music so they deliver a sound as uncolored as possible with I/O and features that are practical for a producer and a musician.
In the same price, category check out these for example:
Focusrite Scarlett Solo
Behringer U-PHORIA UM2
or simply type "audio interface" into the search bar and look for yourself. Hope this helps.
FL Studio is a great start in my opinion. If you've already put 10 hours in, and are making some cool sounds that you feel good about, you've already overcome one of the largest obstacles!
One way to take it to the next level is to try to re-create a song you like, or part of it, in FL Studio. Take for example this section of your first link. You could roughly recreate that in FL Studio without too much pain. Just don't give up until you get the sound you're looking for. Maybe start with the drum parts, figure out the 1,2,3,4's of it, and try to put that into a loop in FL. Then bust out the synthesizer for the saws on top of the drums. You said you don't have much synth experience, so layering some saws over your drums and tweaking things until it sounds correct would be a great exercise.
For MIDI gear, a small keyboard would be great for experimenting and learning. Maybe get one with some pads and knobs that you can map to your sweet FL saws that you were layering? I'd say skip the drum machine for now, you can do all of that sequencing in FL and 1000x better IMO. However drum pads are nice, where you can bang out patterns and fills using your hands. You could try something like the MPK25 USB controller which has keys, pads, and knobs all in one.
The main thing is to really sit down and learn. You've already got good software and the passion, that's all you need. A small midi keyboard or controller might help you get started, but don't get lost in different devices, plugins, etc. as they will just slow down your learning as they provide instant gratification while you miss out on learning the fundamentals. Books can be helpful as well, I'd recommend the Dance Music Manual. Don't lose your passion, practice or study every day. Read and watch videos! Ask questions!
bad advice so far imo. You shouldn't try to learn something by randomly messing about until you eventual 'learn' it. Learn theory by reading books written on theory. Start with the basic conceptual stuff like what melody and harmony is and why it works the way it does. Learn your ABCs: major and minor scales, modes. How to build chords, Scale degrees and intervals. the cycle of fifths. The consonant < > Dissonant spectrum and how it relates to melody and harmony e.t.c.
THEN you can 'mess about', but in a structured way and explore the stuff you're learning as you learn it. Simply knowing scales is the equivalent of being able to say "hello" "yes" "no" "my name is" e.t.c. You've really got to get into the underlying relationships of intervals and harmony to begin getting a grasp of how to apply meaning (emotion/rhetoric/feeling) to your music.
the books by Michael Hewitt are a decent start as they apply this stuff in a computer music context. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Theory-Computer-Musicians-Michael-Hewitt/dp/1598635034
later down the line you can get into more complicated stuff like diatonic harmony, classical form, post tonal theory e.t.c.
It all depends on how far you want to go with it and ultimately how much control and scope you want to have. A lot of EDM producers are relatively theoretically mute. But it doesn't stop them from making decent music within the practice/genre they're versed in (but that's a different conversation a little outside the scope of your question ;) )
Also, study your favorite tracks, use what knowledge you have to deconstruct music you like, copy the chord progressions, arrangements, mimic timbre, vibe and theme e.t.c. Get familiar with the nuts and bolts of what makes the music you like sound so good to you, and then apply that general orientation in a creative manner to your own workflow.
Hope this helped!
Awesome dude! I'm a huge Seven Lions fan, as well as Mitis. Any melodic dubstep really. It sounds like you have found your taste, and a style that you truly love. Now just focus on developing your way of turning that taste into something you're proud of.
Pick something that you feel you need a lot of improvement and work on that. If you're making melodic music I would focus on just that.... melodic stuff. Learn music theory. Buy this book
This book is what really helped me understand music. I am still learning new things everyday about theory. If you wanna make anything like Mitis or Seven Lions you will heavily benefit from theory. Both of those dudes have a solid understanding of music theory and the basic foundations of a song.
Send me that link dude!
First of all, you have to decide what you want the focus of the track to be on. You talk about bass a lot, so I guess that's your focus. So start by lowering all faders to the bottom (start with silence).
>When mixing, what are my goals to get my levels at?
Skip to the main part of your song, a part where everything is playing. Raise the fader on your bass channel so that it peaks at about -12dB on your Master channel meter. Now, without looking at any meters, raise the fader of your next most important channel (in EDM, usually the kick) until it sounds good alongside the bass. Then do the same with the next most important channel until all three sound good together and repeat until you've raised all faders by whatever amount.
By the time you're done, you will probably be peaking at -6dB. Don't worry if you aren't, so long as you're not clipping.
Not every part of your song will fit into this mix, but it's a pretty good place to start. Now you get busy with automation in parts like your intro/outro and breakdowns.
>To make my track professional sounding, I'm using a spectrum analyzer, so what do I want the shape of all the levels to be?
Forget about the spectrum analyser. They have their uses, but real men mix with their ears. Professionals mix with their ears. Stop worrying about the numbers (so long as you're not clipping!)
>Is bass supposed to be higher than the rest because it's perceived as lower?
Not necessarily. You might find that your bass fader is higher than the rest, but that's because you made it your focus. It would be different if you were making a rock track, where the guitar or vocals would be the focus of the mix.
>How do I get things like my lead to stand out without squashing hats and other sounds?
We call this "separation," and you do it with EQ. If your leads are interfering with your hats, chances are that they are sharing some of the same frequencies. What you have to do with EQ is separate the frequencies of each channel so that they don't clash. This is where you would use that spectrum analyser, at least until you develop a good sense of frequency with your ears alone. Solo the hats and look at where they peak on the spectrum. Now cut that frequency from your lead with EQ. Don't go nuts, a cut of 5-6dB is more than enough. Now do the same in reverse - look at where the lead peaks and cut that from the hats. The two tracks should now play nicely together without clashing.
By the way, I'm of the opinion that with EDM, where the producer is in full control of the sound design of all the elements of a track, if you need to drastically EQ any track, then it's better to just rethink the sound selection. Why bother trying to force a lead to fit a hi-hat when you have many GB of other hi-hats on your hard drive, or when you have a synth with total control of the frequencies in your lead? It's true, you can't polish a turd, and you can't make two polished turds look good together either.
>Often I test it in my car with a subwoofer and my levels for bass are low but I'm already almost clipping.
It's probably just that other channels have bass information that doesn't need to be there, leaving no room for your actual bass. Since you're now mixing to focus on your bass, this should be less of a problem. To go along with what I was saying about frequency separation it's common to just high-pass filter every channel to about 120Hz except the bass and kick, so that they are the only thing heard in that whole frequency band (which is what your subs are playing).
>I just need like an in depth text resource
My recommendations are The Art of Mixing and Mastering Audio.
Music theory is kind of interactive since you should play the notes and listen while learning scales and chords. So you can use a book but you can also learn most of the stuff online.
This site is great for learning music theory from the ground of. Those a step-by-step tutorials and are just nice to start with:
If you're looking for tips to actually write and compose melodies, this is a more abstract but still nice guide:
Experimentation is always the key. You need some theory yes, but more importantly you should play your keyboard and listen to the notes/chords and find out what sounds nice.
If I would have to recommend a book, this is piece here is old but still gold:
Def want acoustic Treatments for sure. I've stumbled across some pretty crazy deals on Ebay from time to time. Upgrade your monitoring next and get a small sub. Try to get monitors and subs that are the same series, as they are often built to work together and have easy cutoff switches that end/start at the others frequencies. Something like this is ideal for a great price: https://www.ebay.com/i/182475564279?chn=ps&amp;dispItem=1
Avoid monitors that are ported in the front (i.e. rokit krk's). If you want bass traps, make your own. Just goolge the process. Keep in mind a bed is already and excellent bass trap, if there is one in your room. Generally want monitors at ear level. This book is a wealth of information on this topic and many others. Maybe check it out as well: https://www.amazon.com/Mixing-Secrets-Small-Studio-Presents/dp/0240815807/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1501967590&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=mixing+secrets+for+the+small+studio
Good luck with everything! Enjoy yourself!
Yeah, sidechain compression kick/ bass is a topic that is probably the most discussed one on youtube :D
I recommend you to spend some time with this book. Taught me a lot! It’s rather for mixing engineers than for producers. But as we are our own mixing engineers, we should know all of that stuff that’s in there! That book could be much more expensive imo.
First, lo-cut (HPF) the kick. Start with 18 dB per octave slope at 30 Hz.
Some people recommend to scoop out the frequency bands which are mostly prominent "on the other side".
E.g. Kick bell cut at 30-60 Hz, Bass bell cut at 60-100 Hz.
Well, I think that’s an old technique which has been used in the past in the analogue world for acoustic drums and electric bass guitars. We can use gazillions compressors and EQ’s ITB and sidechain everything with everything, so why limit ourselves?
I follow Mike Senior’s advice: Always high/ low pass first! If you can high/low pass it, don’t use bell cuts/ boosts.
Start with these compressor settings for the sidechain ducking, but don't necessarily stick to them,
and adjust later to taste:
High(est) Ratio your compressor provides, fastest attack (it's ducking, so we don't give a shit about transients here), release adapted to your songs 16 th (maybe 32 th, depends on the kick you use) note tempo, so the “coming back” of the bass fits in the “groove”
I start with a gain reduction of - 9dB, sometimes more, sometimes less. Adjust until the bass is kind of just the “tail” of the kick. Make it tight.
Now turn up your monitors or sub (or make a car stereo check). Is there a sort of rumbling/ wobbling -> adjust the lo-cut of your kick and/ or increase the gain reduction. Don’t do the kick EQ adjustment in solo mode! Your kick might sound really terrible in solo mode, but if that’s the EQ setting you need for the kick/ bass combination, then that’s the setting you need.
If you have parts where the kick plays without the bass, like intro or something, and the sound is just too thin, then automate the EQ’s lo-cut, so the lo-cut only is active during the bass included parts.
Hope that helps. Get creative!
A 25 mini-key would be perfect for you. They're great for quickly adding in parts and they're highly portable, enabling you to produce on-the-go. I would personally recommend the AKAI mpk mini mkII. It's double the price but comes with encoders and drum pads. Pretty much everything you need in a super portable package (I used it to make music for the majority of a 15 hour flight I recently took!) Good luck!
Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 is a really nice audio interface. This will allow you to use your headphones + plug nice speakers into your computer via a USB cable only. http://www.amazon.co.uk/FOCUSRITE-SCARLETT-Audio-interfaces-USB-Red/dp/B005OZE9SA
Ableton live does have operator and analog (internal synthesizers). You should learn these first if you can however sylenth1 and native instruments massive are good choices. Spire as well.
Ableton live is a solid choice. Go for the full suite version. Sadowick production does a very good tutorial series for ableton here -> https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLa9ASr8n5idArGa1uaBExM-lI-nO1P959
Not very clued up on speakers but you would benefit from getting monitoring speakers from the beginning. KRK's are popular. I have the KRK rokit 6s and they are pretty nice for the price.
Think about getting a midi keyboard for inputting notes into ableton. I use this - http://www.amazon.co.uk/Korg-microKEY-37-USB-MIDI-Controller/dp/B007VQIGPW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1413076010&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=korg+microkey
If you'd like to take this all to the next level, I'd suggest reading Music Habits - The Mental Game of Electronic Music Production. It provides essential tips on how to keep pushing through in the creative process and ensure that you're enjoying what you're doing. Also provides tons of recommendations on how to keep building up templates so you avoid a blank slate in your DAW - the most dreadful moment in production! Also, while on topic if you're ever searching for inspiration and trying to find your own creative voice, I'd highly recommend Effortless Mastery by Kenny Werner. Although it's jazz piano focused, it applies to any type of creative. No more pressure! Have fun and keep the shavings coming :)
Start from the basic videos
Rick Beato's channel is also decent.
Cheap and everything explained clearly.
Or print the lessons of this site:
Mixing: MixbusTV ; recordingrevolution
Edm production tips: type "Lessons of KSHMR" - it's uploaded by a used named Splice (which is an audio samples related site)
Future music magazine: in the studio / Steinberg sessions
Tons of free vsts: https://bedroomproducersblog.com/free-vst-plugins/
Recommended DAW is Reaper (60 USD), because it's the most stable, the cheapest and has the most options and custom skins, so you can replicate any other DAW's key commands/mouse modifiers and skins, while having cheaper and more stable DAW - the only negative is that it doesn't include synths and samples, only fx plugins.
Reaper tutorials (around 340 videos )
Recommended payed synths:
Serum (CPU killer, so don't buy it, if you don't have a good computer) or Massive for dubstep. These 2 are easy to learn and there are tons of presets for them - free and paid.
For non-dubstep anything goes as long you know what you do. You may like Syntmaster - tons of presets, cheap (100 usd) and many synthesis modes (but is very ugly and cluttered GUI). But whatever, the sounds are great (there are also cutdown versions of it, so care). The synths with that many different synthesis modes are usually way more expensive (200-500 or more USD)- but like I said, Synthmaster has pretty bad UI; still, it's a steal for that price.
At some point you will probably want NI Kontakt, because of 3rd party soundbanks, but better buy it in a Komplete bundle - it's cheaper.
Nexus is OK, if you are after some of the latest soundbanks (and they are super expensive). Factory sounds are overused and somewhat dated, so it's not worth it, if you don't get any of the latest expansions.
Native Instruments has a huge sale on all most all their plugins/komplete products!
Soundtoys is also having 50% off all bundles or 80% off all plugins!
You can grab any of those products from their websites.
Last but not least I just bought these off amazon for an amazing price, I love black friday
Focusrite Scarlett 6i6
Audio Technica ATH m50x
Primacoustic London 8 Panel Acoustic Tile
Well if you definitely have to have the look of V-Moda and want to do some music production only the M100 would be useful there. They aren't designed for studio reference but they are slightly more neutral than the LP2 which will give you too much bass for producing.
Honestly I'd recommend getting 2 pairs, the V-Moda LP2 for DJing (they are perfect for DJ use) then a different brand for producing. You don't have to spend a fortune on a decent pair of studio headphones. The Sony MDR7306 are only about $80 USD and make perfect music production headphones.
I have 2 sets of those Klipsch! They're great for gaming and I have a set plugged in to my TV as well. :)
Piggybacking on what others have said - yes, you need a pair, and yes, you'd need a soundcard. The best bang for your buck right now would be a reasonable USB soundcard (I recommend and own the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2, $150) and a set of low impedance reference headphones - you can get the Beyerdynamic DT-770 in 32 Ohm impedance for $175.
Links to make life easier:
The first and best thing with making music in general, regardless of DAW, instruments, medium etc. is to first have a basic understanding of music, how it works and music theory. I yet to read it myself as I have had theory training elsewhere, but Michael Hewitt's Music Theory for Computer Musicians is a book I have heard many people swear by to learn theory from. You may be able to borrow it from your local library or something too. Understanding scales, chords etc. from the get go, will be your compass for making music as you go. Now, many people will say 'you don't need as much theory' in music production, but they use music theory without even knowing it, they pick up the pieces unknowingly along the way. You can do that, but it's learning the hard way; isn't it better to have the compass at the beginning then to build it on the way?
Now that that's out of the way, find a basic FL Studio series tutorial to understand how the program works from basics to more advanced. Play along as you go, moving and tweaking things as you learn. Once you understand, start making something everyday. It can be a 4 bar loop, it's okay. The thing is, no matter how hard you try, you're not going to make good music at first. To get to the good stuff, you need to go through the crap. And the fastest way to learn is to do it everyday, without fail. And when you do this, maybe focus on something different every week. For example, the music I make this week is going to focus on learning Serum, or the music I make this week is focusing on how to mix using volume faders, or the next week will be using reverb to create depth in a mix etc. Focus on one thing at a time but still make music. Immerse yourself in the culture of production so that you constantly learn and do.
Hope that helped. :)
Don't really know any good "production" books, but this book on mixing is fantastic http://www.amazon.com/Mixing-Secrets-Small-Studio-Senior/dp/0240815807/ref=pd_bxgy_b_img_z. I hear very nice things about the Dance Music Manual, so thats worth checking out. You should also get a book on your DAW. Never underestimate the value of understanding what your software can do. It'll save you a lot of endless google searches when you need to get something done. :)
Jake Perrine wrote three books on Ableton, if you already know the ins and outs of the daw's interface and what not then the other two aren't the most useful, although they do contain some amazing workflow tips and what not, but I'd recommend picking this up http://www.amazon.ca/Sound-Design-Mixing-Mastering-Ableton/dp/1480355119 . It's great for Ableton specific Mixing and Mastering.
Also, another series of books that are fantastic for continuing music training are these ones. http://www.amazon.ca/Composition-Computer-Musicians-Michael-Hewitt/dp/1598638610
They are a little less about production and more about composition, harmony and theory but very well written and informative.
I recommend looking into some books on production. There is so much more information crammed into the better books than you will find in a week's of searching forums and youtube tutorials. For books on mixing, I say you can't go wrong with Bobby Owinski's The Mixing Engineer's Handbook or Mike Senior's Mixing Secrets for the Small Studioand for general production I recommend Rick Snoman's Dance Music Manual just be sure to get the latest edition, it includes chapters that cover everything from basic theory the popular genres (trance, dubstep, DnB, Techno, House, and Ambient/Chillout), it covers the electronics and science of acoustics, MIDI, DAW's and everything that come's along with them (instruments, effects, samplers, etc) and promoting and distributing your music. I can't say enough about this book and what a great way it was for me to see the "big picture" of what was ahead of me when I was starting out.
So this is what you learn:
-How to create an 808 Kick
-How to arrange a track
-How to create a "lush sparkling mix"
-How to use reverb
-How to create a build up
-Basic sound design
-How to use distortion and compression
NOPE. Not for $40.
For mixing: http://www.amazon.com/Mixing-Secrets-Small-Studio-Senior/dp/0240815807/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1427666706&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=small+studio+mixing
Sound design, arranging, etc.: http://www.amazon.com/Dance-Music-Manual-Tools-Techniques/dp/0415825644/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1427666724&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=dance+music+manual
The first book I linked to is literally the bible of mixing. It's a truly great resource. The second is a great cursory overview of music theory, sound design, and several aspects of the big electronic genres: arrangements, keys, percussion. It even tells you settings for synthesizing kicks in each genre it covers.
I started DJing first then have recently been doing some production. Here's my recommendation in priority order:
Finally just a word of advice: stick with it, take your time and believe in yourself. Try to resist copying whatever is the most popular and make what you like the sound of. Find your sound and your DJing style. :)
I had the ATH-M50's and the bass is pretty shitty to be honest. I've asked around to some producers and they recommended These headphones they're in your price range and trust me they are amazing. The ear cups are suuuuper comfortable. Also the mixdowns I get off of them are noticeably better.
Hey there - this struggle happens to all of us at some point to a certain degree. One thing I do when I'm in that space is to try to not accomplish anything, just open up the DAW, find a sound I like and play with it. It often leads to some really great ideas, and reminds me that I got into music because it's fun and feels good. Sometimes I'll do a YouTube search, find a tutorial on something I don't know how to do, and work along with it. It get's me back in learning mode. Beginner's mind.
Also, Brian Eno's "Oblique Strategies" are helpful. They seem to be hard to find. I got a deck of them, but can't remember where. But there is also a free app you can pick up.
And lastly, I'll recommend this book to all, even if you don't have writer's block. It's an inspirational little book applicable for all artists, regardless of medium. Stephen Pressfield's "War of Art"
Do you know your way through Ableton already or are you looking to learn more about the in's and out's of Ableton?
If you know how to use Ableton already, I highly recommend spending more time delving into music theory over DAW tutorials (especially if you are producing deep house which has more complex chord structures). I bought the following book off Amazon and was happy with what I learned off music theory (allow the beginning starts off a little slow if you have been producing for awhile):
If you are wanting to learn more about the in's and out's of Ableton, I'd recommend saving some money and looking up tutorials on YouTube on how to accomplish what you are looking to do. If you have any questions regarding Ableton plugins, there is likely a YouTube tutorial on it for free.
The Sony MDR 7506's are a great choice. Had them recommended to me by several engineers, and they have not disapointed. The response is nice and flat, a very nice soundstage, and best of all the mixes I make on these headphones sound more consistent on other systems/headphones than any other pair I've tried. Plus, Amazon's got them on sale right now!
this is a general production book, but the first few chapters have some really good tips on drum programming. I learned a ton from it already and I thought I already knew a fair bit about drum programming.
The most important thing I read was to watch a real drummer and program your drums realistically. Watch a real drummer and realize how many hands they have and think about that as you write.
He also talks about how to make a loop and then how to extend that loop to work for 4 bars, 8 bars, and 16. Really good stuff.
Some advanced and very in-depth mixing resources:
Mike Senior was Editor for Sound On Sound magazine's "Mix Rescue" column, where you could listen to mixes submitted by readers. Mike fixes the mix, and give his reasoning to why he makes each change that he does. Great concept, great articles.
Dave Pensado is just a class act. You have to love the guy. Grammy awarded, and a great teacher. His interviews with other professionals are always a blast, but for very in-depth technical discussions, go watch his "Into the Lair" segments. You won't be disappointed.
I realize that these two resources are not EDM centric, but the fundamentals are rock solid and you'll be able to use them wherever you go.
I'd go with these: http://www.amazon.com/Sony-MDR7506-Professional-Diaphragm-Headphone/dp/B000AJIF4E/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1371702627&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=sony+mdr-7506
Sony MDR-7506, pretty flat frequency response, comfy even after wearing them for 10 hours straight and have a 3m coiled cable. Also pretty cheap and if you break them they are easily repaired. I use them for mixing music among other things and if they sound good on these they'll sound good on everything else.
this, this and this are said to be pretty good and are on my "to buy" list as well. Just took a short look at one of them at a friend's house a while ago and seems to be pretty well written.
Also: AFAIK written by a redditor. ;)
You'll want to check out the Dance Music Manual (3rd ed) by Rick Snoman. It's huge. Covers a lot of topics - from basic theory to synthesis to rhythm to details about different genres. It's written in a pretty friendly style, so it's readable. It'll definitely keep you entertained for an average camping trip.
Yeah. You have to ask yourself, why am I obsessed with collecting all this information? It's not enough to just stop it, I'm sure you've tried that and found yourself back in the same old familiar patterns. A book that I really enjoyed reading was this, music habits His message is really simple, but his whole philosophy of music production is really good. There are a lot of bad habits we pick up when we first start music production and one of them is that obsession with collecting more info.
Also what really helped me is stick to a few good resources. Forget about the internet because I find more often than not there is a ton of bad advice floating around that you don't want to take on. Occasionally you find these amazing posts full of wisdom and 9/10 their knowledge came from a professional who knew their shit who probably already wrote a book that would be really beneficial to read.
And if you're like me you probably just overthink everything way too much. And collecting all that info isn't helping you to trust your own judgement and just making music.
Serum is $189.
MDR7506 - the best headphones. Got introduced to these and haven't looked back. Get these and save the difference for Serum. Serum is awesome btw!
EDIT: PriceZombie, MDR7506 is only 79.99 through Sony!
This may be controversial to an extent but...
My suggestion: Use 2-3 reference tracks to compare your song to when producing/mixing/mastering. Use whatever headphones you normally use when you listen to music. After it sounds good on there, THEN switch to a better sound system (or headphones) to fine tune. Once it sounds good on there, only then do you really need to use a sound system with a good low end. For me, this is my car, because I have new neighbors and my monitors are too loud for them.
At the end of the day, no matter your sound system, you have to learn it. Listen to songs you know very well (and like) on it. Always use reference songs when you're making music. I've paid for pro studio time and the songs I made on the systems I knew always came out sounding better.
I use apple ear buds and then I use these: https://www.amazon.com/Sony-MDR7506-Professional-Diaphragm-Headphone/dp/B000AJIF4E
My monitors, which don't get used very often, are Rokit 5's. You may find an old used pair in your budget.
Industry standard, very flat. I recommend these especially if you’re just getting started:
These are bright and clear. They reveal a lot. The top end can be a bit harsh without Sonarworks so if you go this route you’d want to get sonar works (linked below):
Software that works great with any headphones, especially the 880s. It makes the sound more flat and balanced:
If you buy 250ohm headphones you’ll also want a small amp so it’s powered properly. This one is affordable and works great. You hook it into your Audio interface:
Also research and consider these (read good things but never tried them):
All that being said if your budget is higher than those I’d research Beyerdynamics and Sennheiser top tier products.
I've been reading Music Theory for Computer Musicians and I really like it so far. It's pretty easy to follow and it has sound clips and exercises at the end of each chapter to help reinforce the lessons.
Here's a link to it on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/1598635034
http://www.amazon.com/Mastering-Audio-The-Art-Science/dp/0240808371 is a pretty good resource. But the best way to learn is working together with someone who knows the tools and uses them well.
Sony MDR-7506. https://www.amazon.com/Sony-MDR7506-Professional-Diaphragm-Headphone/dp/B000AJIF4E
They won't boost or color any signal too much and give you a nice even response for the most part. For the price range they are really good.
Obviously you can find better ones for like $500 but these are great for what they are.
I had the same question very recently and realized that I just need to learn some of music theory, not sure how deep I'm going to dig into it, but so my resources so far:
Some of the videos from youtube, together with relevant chapters fromthe book already helped me understanding some of music theory basics I never happened to learn before.
Next planned books, if I'll keep on being interested:
Hope that helps!
Thanks for the tip on that book. Looks amazing and gets great reviews.
I would recommend reading.
The Dance Music Manual. The producer (Rick Snowman) who wrote it has some solid credentials. Its presents the knowledge in a very approachable format and will give you a whole overview from construction of drums/melody/harmony to mixing to mastering.
For drums you'll want Drum Programming by Ray F Badness. This book will teach you how to create drum progressions that catch attention and don't get boring.
For synthesis, read SOS's Synth Secrets. Its free, and if you read it and try it out on a synth in your daw, you'll be well on your way to synthetic mastery.
Here you go, these are arranged according to their importance:
These will get you on track, then you can dive more into complex synthesizers, start buying some loops and manipulate them to be unique, read more about compression (because it's an endless topic), start making collaborations, mixing, mastering (limiters, multi-band compressors and stereo-imaging).
Hey guys, I'm kind of trying to get into producing from a musical background but finding it quite difficult. Think getting a midi keyboard would be good because I think I'd find it more intuitive to have an actual keyboard in front of me but I'm really cash strapped just now and for the foreseeable future.
So yeah my question: which of these is better just to start me off? pretty cheap and might not be great but I don't want to invest anymore than this kind of money just now
The Dance Music Manual is a great resource for this type of analysis of other genres:
I don't think the book contains anything specific to progressive house. There's a DVD for it though. I have not watched it but I would trust it based on their other stuff:
The advice to just experiment isn't wrong but it also doesn't seem to acknowledge that you have to start by imitating something, and it helps to know what you're imitating. I think this is a good question.
If you want something small, then I'd recommend this, which is what I own. If you want something large, take a look at this, which comes in 49 keys, 61 keys, and 88 keys. Good luck! Of course these are just two examples of keyboards that I like, but I hope this helps.
If you are to write something that has any melodic content, you need to know the basics of music theory.
Buy this book!
I was blessed to read on this sub 3 years ago someone recommended this book!
It takes a few weeks to read on and off and will teach you ALL you need to know about the Theory! Plain and simple!
can you double your budget?
this is an expensive hobby but we buy things that last. Here is a 5 year pair of headphones for 80 bucks:
if you tour studios you'll see these laying next to 700 dollar headphones and 10000 dollar speakers. They make an excellent mostly-flat frame of reference for the 'average jane' listener.
you should also plan never to get anything useful out of 40 dollars in this (edmproduction) world. It does happen from time to time, but it's rare and you need to know enough to recognize a good deal from a ripoff.
edit: you will likely want to follow your headphone purchase with an audio interface purchase. your internal sound card can drive decent headphones, but it will likely lose stuff at lower volumes and distort early at high volumes. an external amp can make a cheap quick fix but you'll (probably) raise your noise floor and add new colour to the sound. you'll probably want help with that purchase too.
PreSonus Audiobox usb is the audio interface I have and i got it for 100$. It has midi in and out as well as mic inputs and speaker outputs. Cool thing about it is that it is fully metal so yeah. definitely the best for the price! here is a link on amazon
You are in luck because 2 weeks ago, the new edition of Dance Music Manual came out.
You can read the reviews for the previous edition here http://www.amazon.com/Dance-Music-Manual-Tools-Techniques/dp/0240521072/ref=pd_sim_b_7
It covers like all the bases to some extent. It does not teach you how to use a DAW though.
Also all the books (Music theory|Composition|Harmony) for computer musician by Michael Hewitt are pretty good if you have no music background.
There's not much to add, everyone's already told it like it is. Might i recommend the absolutely wonderful and informative book "Music Theory For Computer Musicians" by Michael Hewit?
On a semi-related note, how did you make that video for your song?
Have you read Mastering Audio by Bob Katz?
This would be the best place to start learning about mastering, in my opinion: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Mastering-Audio-Science-Bob-Katz/dp/0240808371/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8
For videos, Streaky's channel on YouTube is the best I've seen (although I don't necessarily agree with 100% of his opinions): https://www.youtube.com/user/StreakyMasteringTV
i'd go with a good pair of headphones:
then just be sure to double check your low end with a good spectrum analyzer. here are some free ones:
I have read that and personally didn't take a whole lot away from it. For mixing I would recommend Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio. For theory I would look into this, or maybe jazz stuff depending on your style, e.g. The Jazz Theory Book.
There are a whole lot of free resources that are worth checking out too, like Pensado's Place, r/musictheory , Pro Audio Files, Freejazzlessons.com, SeamlessR, etc.
Everybody and anybody that knows about saving money/having good quality will recommend the Audio Technica ATH-M50x I personally haven't heard them, I have the m70x since theyre flatter in frequency response (kinda wanted them to produce with), but the m70x are suuuuuuper clear, just no bass, I believe the 50's are to be more casual. Try them out, they should be a bang for your buck.
Also you can youtube review them
EDIT: I'm sure you can find them for cheaper in that link I've provided. The cheapest I've found them for was around $99
everyone is part of the lucky 10,000 at some point in their life.. considering this is THE subreddit for EDM Production... I don't know why you are surprised to see them in here.
That being said, I agree. Read the sidebar, search the sub, get on youtube, and read a few books.
I would highly recommend just pasting a link to Music Theory for Electronic Musicians instead of letting it get under your skin.
Best quality-for-value headphones: ATH-M50X
Best quality-for-value monitors: Yamaha HS5
Shop around on Google for both, you can usually find a decent discount somewhere.
HS5s are on the small side, so bass output may be weak. You can compensate with a sub, but with that added cost, might as well just upgrade to HS7.
Consider whether your genre is bass-heavy or not, and how critical it is for you to extend your bottom end by 5-10HZ (and also the size of your mixing space), then decide.
In regards to lightening the CPU load, this is not the case.
You can shift most of the workload to a sound card or an interface and gain a ton of slack for your CPU. You can make this upgrade *relatively* inexpensive, but you can easily get into more bells and whistles with external interfaces.
Here's a few links for some examples:
Check out this page to get a little more info on how to reduce latency issues while using Ableton for a little more help: https://help.ableton.com/hc/en-us/articles/209072289-How-to-reduce-latency
that’s actually pretty realistic advice....just keep trying. keep throwing darts at it and you’ll hit the bullseye eventually. keep watching videos, messing around, and putting time in
you’ll want to give up a lot - but every time you overcome that feeling you’ll come back more inspired.
also, check our Syntorial
and this book:
The Secrets of Dance Music Production https://www.amazon.com/dp/0956446035/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_Ncp2DbCN85VDK
The guide I just linked, despite being written for a specific commercial product, has lots of good conceptional information that be applied to whatever tools you have at your disposal to work with. It is a widely recommended resource for learning the fundamentals of mastering techniques.
Besides, I think your expectations for what people will put into reddit posts is a little screwy. Mastering is a huge topic. Its is an art form in and of itself, not a simple procedure like side-chain compression or programming a specific synth patch. Introductions to the art of mastering take up hundreds of pages. If you want to understand a huge topic, read a book. If you want a few pointers, tips, or tricks, ask people on sites like reddit.
i suggest picking up some reading material such as:
then once you're beyond that, there's an awesome musictheory subreddit you should check out. hope this helps!
I have a Zoom H1. It's pretty good for what it is, is cheap but still has nice quality for the price. It does feel a bit flimsy but if you're careful with it it'll last you for a long time. It also happens to be on sale at Amazon.com right now.
Just do it dude, inspiration comes best to those who don't wait for it.
Buy this book and read it. War of Art
The War of Art
Read that and then just sit down and do the work. Instant gratification and art don't always mix well. Put in the work and the gratification you get from finishing will be even greater.
Edit: Fixed a word.
I have Sony MDR7506s, they're pretty great.
Actually I might recommend this as a good middle ground between just opening the DAW and truly learning the piano:
Music Theory for Computer Musicians
I reference it a lot and it's very clear and it teaches you a lot.
I have a zoom h1 and it records pretty nicely. I'm not recording instruments with it or anything, but It works well for enviornmental sounds and random weird things that I tend to record. The price is definitely right on this one.
I wish I had this book when I started. It's a great overview for a beginner!
The Secrets of Dance Music Production https://www.amazon.com/dp/0956446035/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_r0hmDbF5S638M
Reading this will teach you the Fundamentals of creating Dance Music. I have a copy and I'm actually reading it right now very Helpful, very well written.
The Akai LPK25 is amazing value for the money. I got mine for around 30 quid on Amazon.
+1 on this. I own the Sony's and ATH M50x, and the Sony's are now just collecting dust. The reason schools opt for the 7506 is because they were the radio standard back in the day, and they were the radio standard because if they broke you wouldn't care. While they are great for the price point, spending 40 dollars more will get you an unbelievable headphone. Over time, you will upgrade things in your setup, but I will almost guarantee these will continue to be used. Plus being able to change out cable lengths is super handy. As a side note, my OCD does not approve of the Sony coiled cable.
Deals do pop up every so often and I have seen them as low as 129.
edit: I found them for 129:
This is the best one I have found. Everything is very, very well explained.
What do you think about these two?
They are surely more superficial but more easy to understand and apply on a DAW
This this this this this this. Read this book. Completely changed how I approach making music. Focuses a lot more on workflow and creativity and developing your own style/taste than it does on technicals such as mixing and sound design however I believe that any producer at any stage of their journey should read it. It's a great read too, witty, personal, fast paced, and informative. https://www.amazon.com/Music-Habits-Electronic-Production-Procrastination-ebook/dp/B00ZJG398U
US$179 on Amazon atm (https://www.amazon.com/beyerdynamic-770-closed-Studio-Headphone/dp/B0016MNAAI/)
Honestly, good headphones are the best bang-for-buck item you can buy when you're starting out. My first pair of DT770 lasted me 12 years, and I thrashed those poor things.
By comparison, when people are shopping for monitor speakers, I generally tell people to avoid anything under about US$1500 - they all have to make compromises below that price..
Damn.. he said he won't go under $60.
I found these on Amazon though I don't know which is best:
I would recommend Bob Katz book on mastering. It covers all the main techniques and has beautiful diagrams. http://www.amazon.com/Mastering-Audio-The-Art-Science/dp/0240808371
If you don't mind reading abunch there is a book covering alot of the main things about EDM. It had really improved my producing, it is little heavy reading though. :)
Link to book
Here are your best budget options of gear you must have:
[Audio Technica M50] (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HVLUR86/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00HVLUR86&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=silastu-20&amp;linkId=KJN5X2ZF3TL466SZ)
MIDI Keyboard -
Akai MPK Mini
Moar Buttons & Knobs -
Recording Interface -
Focusrite Scarlett 2i2
Okay .. firstly SOLID idea..
Secondly.. I'm not sure what you used to master it, or if you even mixed it at all because it is extremely muddy and loud.
Get a pair of monitor speakers or studio headphones.. if you're on a low budget I would recommend getting these. If you're on a bigger budget definitely check out Audio Technica's.
I absolutely love this. Make sure you buy the copy that comes with the CD!
I recommend buying this book:
Limiters often introduce a bit of distortion since you're essentially folding the signal when it clips (or exceeds your threshold). Limiters are normally used to push the 'loudness' of a track (i.e. crank everything up, throw a limiter on it, voila it's louder and you don't have to worry about clipping). Honestly, using limiters has only limited myself. An amateur using a limiter will have trouble getting their tracks to sound right, since louder always sounds better in isolation, but doesn't necessarily mean it sounds better in the mix.
You could download and read this
Its the answers to this textbook but its actually quite useful.
I'd that https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/1435456726/ref=pd_aw_sbs_14_of_4?ie=UTF8&amp;psc=1&amp;refRID=4J9JHHY159DKP3FRKH35 and https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/1598638610/ref=pd_aw_sbs_14_of_10?ie=UTF8&amp;psc=1&amp;refRID=4J9JHHY159DKP3FRKH35 are great too.
something like this. Check out reverb.com they have a lot of good resale equipment
This book is just awesome to learn all that stuff!
Search for it in this subreddit, you'll find a copy of it if you can't afford to buy it
There's best seller book for this exact problem: https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00ZJG398U/ref=mp_s_a_1_3?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1475077293&amp;sr=8-3&amp;pi=SY200_QL40&amp;keywords=computer+music&amp;dpPl=1&amp;dpID=51VuceO6uoL&amp;ref=plSrch
I've used my phone in the past yeah, definitely does the job! These days I use a Zoom H1 and just capture sounds on my commute to University or out in the garden etc
Whenever it seems that all my time I invested in making a track is on a verge of being thrown down the drain, I just stop and do one of the following:
After that I come back and usually things go really well.
As for audio interfaces, you have two choices that are south of 100 pounds; The M-Audio M-Track (74 pounds), and the Presonus Audiobox (69 pounds). The only difference between the two is that the audiobox lacks two XLR outputs, while the M-Track has both XLR AND TRS. It's worth the extra 5 pounds, if you ask me. The M-Track is also considerably smaller.
As for stands, they're all the same; just there's a bit of a price difference between them all. A good pair will cost you about 50 pounds, so that would be driving you out of your budget range by about 40 pounds, so my recommendation would be to just buy the speakers and interface first and then wait a week or two to buy the stands, and until you get enough money to buy an actual pair, use some kind of makeshift stand.
LINKS -- http://www.amazon.co.uk/M-Audio-M-Track-Channel-Portable-Interface/dp/B00BQ6KSN6/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1414775766&amp;sr=8-8&amp;keywords=audio+interface
You could try checking out a book like Drum Programming (Music Instruction): A Complete Guide to Program and Think Like a Drummer by Ray F. Badness https://www.amazon.com/Drum-Programming-Complete-Program-Drummer/dp/0931759544
These sennheisers are the best headphones in their price range by far and are near the center of your price range at 100 bucks http://www.amazon.com/Sennheiser-HD-280-Pro-Headphones/dp/B000065BPB . Do not get beats by dre or audio technica not worth the money.
I just ordered Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio yesterday from Amazon. It looks pretty damn promising.
For the mics, I use SP-TFB-2 - Sound Professionals - Low Noise In-Ear Binaural Microphone. I use a Zoom H1 for a recording device, as it's 3.5mm mic jack supports stereo.
The build quality of the binaural microphones is a little fragile, but I've had them for years without incident. Just a head up if you have a pet that likes cables.
An old example from my fluff soundcloud account.
Sound On Sound
Somewhat Helpful Tip Lists
List 2's Main Site
Music Habits - The Mental Game of Electronic Music Production
Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio
Music Theory for Computer Musicians
Dance Music Manual: Tools, Toys, and Techniques
I'm fairly certain Sony MDR7506's have been industry standard for longer than I've been alive. I got mine for $60 on ebay.
It's a good audio interface because of all the entries. But the problem with that is that the recording resolution is only 16-bit, which could limit you at some point, which will be pretty fast, believe me!
You should get one of those to start:
Rick Snoman's Dance Music Manual
Also check out his Dvd courses, he's a brilliant teacher!
Learned more here, than 4 years of Youtube tutorials, reading articles, and lurking forums.
I've been producing for ~6-7 years and sound design is still my biggest challenge by a huge margin.
There are two approaches that work for me:
The Dance Music Manual helped me too. I still refer back to it when I'm stuck.
1 year isn't long at all. There are some gifted individuals that seem to get it from the go, but usually it's a lot of work.
Keep at it, and as Neutr4lNumb3r said, practice!
My little brother ... he's been doing it for 20 years. So his tips and help have been invaluable. And then after that this book here, for mixing:
Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio
It's a bit expensive but it's worth every penny. Got so much from it.
You might want to check this book out. It's really helping me a lot in deciding how to fill the different roles in my songs. My other advice is to let the machine lead more. Experiment, make weird sounds. A lot of what I end up using are happy accidents
The only thing I can really recommend is taking an intro to music theory class (this helped me the most).
But if you cant do that, check this out:
Other than that check youtube for music theory tutorials for your DAW, and just learn the notes of different chords. And then once you learn that stuff, make sure all the sounds you use in your track is in your key of choice. Of course as you get more advanced you can break the rules, but thats down the line...
https://www.amazon.com/PreSonus-AudioBox-USB-Audio-Interface/dp/B00154KSA2 - Cheapest external soundcard (US Link).
edited parts list
total is about the same as before.
I had the same experience. Cannot stand the m50x despite how much praise they got. I think they are painful on the ears. I switched over to these and have never looked back: https://www.amazon.com/beyerdynamic-770-Pro-Studio-Headphones/dp/B0016MNAAI/ref=sr_1_3?s=electronics&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1499295524&amp;sr=1-3&amp;keywords=beyerdynamic+headphones
You can listen with them for hours and they are extremely comfortable. Also very good frequency response overall.
I really liked "Mixing Secrets in the Small Studio" for generic mixing:
Dance Music Manual, one of my favorite http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/0240521072?vs=1
http://www.amazon.com/Music-Theory-Computer-Musicians-Bk/dp/1598635034 this is definitely a good place to start. read this myself and it really helped alot
I took advanced music theory all through High School and other than reading the odd bit of notation when I am trying to remix a song, my ears and basic understanding of chords is what I mostly use. I hardly ever use the skills taught to me in that class. I refreshed myself a few years ago with this book, very good:
I highly recommend the book "Mixing secrets for the small studio"
This is where I learned all the basics, highly recommend
Also, i just found something that you might be interested in, in the resources of this reddit: http://www.amazon.com/Music-Theory-Computer-Musicians-Bk/dp/1598635034/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1349448318&amp;sr=8-3&amp;keywords=harmony+for+computer+musicians
These are very good.
Edit: I use a mix of this and my speakers depending on whether I'm at home alone. Also using FL studio and a Focusrite 2i4 as an interface.
Music Theory for Computer Musicians https://www.amazon.com/dp/1598635034/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_xWBVCbA2HCEHM
This book starts from the absolute beginning and walks you through everything you need to k ow to start making music using a DAW and synths. It’s written like a textbook so it has lots of pictures and exercises at the end of each chapter.
I use these, this sub often raves about these. Keep in mind that'll you'll need a headphone amplifier as well.
Just as an aside: If you're not willing to invest significant amounts of money, edmproduction may not be for you.
edit:/ the point of this post was not to discourage OP, but to talk about how edmproduction can become a very expensive hobby and that he should mentally prepare himself for that
A good idea is to get a private teacher, someone who can listen to your mixdowns and tell you what is missing. You might learn really advanced techniques and forget them as you will never need to use them (like multiband compression). Instead, just focus on what will get your own mixdowns to the next level.
Have you read this book?
gotchu fam. I'm just guessing, as I don't own this book, but the title of this post is "the secrets of dance music production" so I googled that and found this on amazon.
Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO because it's all you Need ;-)
While on the topic of headphones, what is your opinion on these? I've heard good things about them but also about the ones you've stated
This is a quick read and will set you straight https://www.amazon.com/War-Art-Through-Creative-Battles/dp/1936891026/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1500325228&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=the+war+of+art
SOS magazine has a shit load of articles on every production topic you could imagine. These are very in depth articles, by some real knowledgeable folks. Don't let the fact some of these articles are a decade old put you off. They are still relevant, specially in intemporal topics like EQ.
Also here's a recommendation for a good book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Mixing-Secrets-Small-Studio-Senior/dp/0240815807 (it's from a reviewer for SOS)
^^^(and ^^^you ^^^can ^^^even ^^^find ^^^it ^^^online)
Amazon has the newer version (M50x) for $124
Audio-Technica ATH-M50x Professional Studio Monitor Headphones https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HVLUR86/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_bTyzxbE821PCF
This is a solid book with a bit of theory and production.
If you want more in detailed information, buy this book and read chapter 1
This is exactly what you want.
Many many many producers go the route of the ATH-M50x as their first pair of serious headphones. I'd highly recommend them. I'd try to avoid mixing/mastering on earbuds.
Here is the desktop version of your link
Music Theory for Computer Musicians & Dance Music Manual in books. You could use Musictheory.net to learn the basics.
^That's ^why ^I'm ^here, ^I ^don't ^judge ^you. ^PM ^/u/xl0 ^if ^I'm ^causing ^any ^trouble. ^WUT?
dance music making manual
Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio - http://www.amazon.com/Mixing-Secrets-Small-Studio-Senior/dp/0240815807
Sound on Sound Synth Secrets - http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/allsynthsecrets.htm
Music Theory for Computer Musicians - http://www.amazon.com/Theory-Computer-Musicians-Michael-Hewitt/dp/1598635034
Composition for Computer Musicians - http://www.amazon.com/Composition-Computer-Musicians-Michael-Hewitt/dp/1598638610
Harmony for Computer Musicians - http://www.amazon.com/Harmony-Computer-Musicians-Michael-Hewitt/dp/1435456726/
Dance Music Manual - http://www.amazon.com/Dance-Music-Manual-Tools-Techniques/dp/0415825644
Also all of the manuals for whatever daw/vsts you have.
Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio
I got you homie.
Here is the mobile version of your link
A book on mixing. https://www.amazon.com/Mixing-Secrets-Small-Studio-Presents/dp/0240815807/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1506324649&amp;sr=8-1&amp;keywords=mixing+for+the+small+studio