Mixing to a pink noise reference

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Dabbler
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Post 07 Aug 2019

This article talks about it.

https://www.soundonsound.com/techniques ... -reference

So how would I do this in Reason 10?

I'd need a pink noise app obviously, but can't that be done with a Subtractor?

Thanks

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Jagwah
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Post 07 Aug 2019

Subtractor will give you white noise which is different.

If you can find a sample of pink noise you can loop it in a sampler like NNXT. I can't be sure where to get a proper one but someone should be able to help out there.

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diminished
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Post 07 Aug 2019

For real pink noise, grab Audacity and create a few mins of pink noise. Add it to your project as an audio track (even make it a part of your template if you wish).

You can also use Thor, init patch with one voice = noise osc switched to "color" (unsure about the color knob settings here), no filter envelope, decay and sustain all the way up. But you'd need to retrigger it every time you jump to another part in the timeline of your project. That's more annoying than useful. Go the audio track route :)
:reason: Most recent track: The Test (feat. MrFigg) || Others: on my YouTube channel •ᴗ•

RobC
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Post 07 Aug 2019

I think I read this one in the past, too. Most articles suggest that you mix with the pink noise on. What I think is that it kind of fools your ears, and may even cancel some frequencies out of the sound that you mix to it.

All in all, I thought, to get the most consistent results, it's better to have an A / B switch ready, and simply listen to the noise on its own, then the sound you desire to mix to the same level, and set volumes that way.

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guitfnky
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Post 07 Aug 2019

there are free pink noise-generator VSTs out there. I have one I rarely use, but I think it’s actually called Pink.

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Dabbler
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Post 07 Aug 2019

Thanks for all the suggestions. I'll let you know which one I get to work.

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selig
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Post 07 Aug 2019

You can also simply mix to the spectrum analyzer, keeping mind that for every four octaves (vertical lines) you should drop in level by one line (12dB).
And remember that even better is to mix to a commercial song that sounds like you want to sound - not EVERY mix should follow the pink noise rule…

Finally, if you DO use pink noise, consider it like training wheels - try to listen first and make a guess at where your mix is standing. THEN look and see how close you actually are. And by all means, make sure you LIKE the way your mixes turn out when working this way - again, not every mix follows the pink noise rule…
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RobC
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Post 08 Aug 2019

With the A / B listening and leveling method, in my case the result was that when I compared a kick, a snare and a hat after calibrating with the help of pink noise; they sounded equally loud (each having their respective dominant frequencies on the spectrum of course). After that, one can still decide what should be quieter or louder in the mix. So it's not like the music sounded like pink noise. Helps with quick, basic calibration, though.

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Djstarski
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Post 08 Aug 2019

This is how i feel about mixing with pink noise . But if it works for you then by all means do it .

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chimp_spanner
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Post 08 Aug 2019

It's definitely a good starting point to get your mix in balance. I find that it will often have me turn things up or down to a point I'd never think to when mixing in the context of a mix. Like snares and hats especially. My instinct is to just have them way out there because, ya know, they're important. But often times with pink noise mixing they'll be a little more dialled back, but the result is a way more even mix that doesn't smack you in the ear with percussive sounds. Of course from there there's headroom to make things more prominent if you want to. It's not a complete fix-all but it's definitely a great way to remove your own subjectivity from the mix and get it to a point where, on paper at least, everything is reasonably balanced.
Enjoy!

http://www.paulortizmusic.com

2017 MBP | 16GB | Steinberg UR44 | Reason 10.4 | Cubase Pro 10.5

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Dabbler
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Post 08 Aug 2019

Very interesting video Dj -thanks.

I have go to try this now. Only need to find time.

Thanks everyone. :)

WarStar
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Post 08 Aug 2019

I second Seligs input..

Mix to the spectrum analyzer.. no need to run audibly pink noise as you mix just the spectrum pattern.. so essentially you spectrum of your song should mimic the look of the pink noise spectrum profile.

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Dabbler
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Post 09 Aug 2019

WarStar wrote:
08 Aug 2019
I second Seligs input..

Mix to the spectrum analyzer.. no need to run audibly pink noise as you mix just the spectrum pattern.. so essentially you spectrum of your song should mimic the look of the pink noise spectrum profile.
Yes, this is where I'm headed.

This post got me started on this. See Selig's response. How do you freeze the song like he did?

viewtopic.php?f=9&t=7513294

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selig
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Post 09 Aug 2019

Dabbler wrote:
09 Aug 2019
WarStar wrote:
08 Aug 2019
I second Seligs input..

Mix to the spectrum analyzer.. no need to run audibly pink noise as you mix just the spectrum pattern.. so essentially you spectrum of your song should mimic the look of the pink noise spectrum profile.
Yes, this is where I'm headed.

This post got me started on this. See Selig's response. How do you freeze the song like he did?

viewtopic.php?f=9&t=7513294
Sorry, the “freeze” was done on my ColoringEQ (called “Hold”), a feature I’ve always wanted in Reason, so I added it!
:)
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Dabbler
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Post 09 Aug 2019

selig wrote:
09 Aug 2019
Dabbler wrote:
09 Aug 2019


Yes, this is where I'm headed.

This post got me started on this. See Selig's response. How do you freeze the song like he did?

viewtopic.php?f=9&t=7513294
Sorry, the “freeze” was done on my ColoringEQ (called “Hold”), a feature I’ve always wanted in Reason, so I added it!
:)
Ha, must be nice. :)

WarStar
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Post 09 Aug 2019

You can always find a image on Google of a pink noise spectrum profile. That's what I do or have done.

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diminished
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Post 09 Aug 2019

WarStar wrote:
09 Aug 2019
You can always find a image on Google of a pink noise spectrum profile. That's what I do or have done.
That's probably the worst way to go, since the slope you see in relative to the scaling of the graph, the upper frequency (half the sampling frequency), the logarithmic function used for plotting the x-axis AND the way the spectrum is calculated.
:reason: Most recent track: The Test (feat. MrFigg) || Others: on my YouTube channel •ᴗ•

WarStar
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Post 09 Aug 2019

What's the difference between a "hold/freeze" spectrograph option and a pink noise spectrum profile?

Here's some relevant info on pink noise as a reference.

Description of pink noise:
"For every octave you move up in the frequency spectrum, the energy of the noise decreases by half (3dB). The human ear perceives this type of noise as balanced throughout the frequency spectrum. This means that 60Hz is going to sound just as loud as 6000Hz, even though it’s not. With the goal of achieving a balanced mix, you can take this knowledge (that pink noise sounds balanced throughout the frequency spectrum) and apply it to your songs."

Further explanation of "why" pink noise is a helpful reference:
"Recall that the Fletcher-Munson Curve tells us that lower frequencies need more energy than higher frequencies to appear to be the same volume, and vice versa."
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Last edited by WarStar on 09 Aug 2019, edited 1 time in total.

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diminished
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Post 09 Aug 2019

I'm referring to the fact of using an image of a spectrum as a reference, not the idea of mixing to pink noise, wether it's visually or by hearing.
:reason: Most recent track: The Test (feat. MrFigg) || Others: on my YouTube channel •ᴗ•

jlgrimes
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Post 10 Aug 2019

selig wrote:
07 Aug 2019
You can also simply mix to the spectrum analyzer, keeping mind that for every four octaves (vertical lines) you should drop in level by one line (12dB).
And remember that even better is to mix to a commercial song that sounds like you want to sound - not EVERY mix should follow the pink noise rule…

Finally, if you DO use pink noise, consider it like training wheels - try to listen first and make a guess at where your mix is standing. THEN look and see how close you actually are. And by all means, make sure you LIKE the way your mixes turn out when working this way - again, not every mix follows the pink noise rule…
I agree.

I think you get more out of using a reference mix of a song you like (or various songs).

Pink noise wont tell you much about kick level, vocal level, stereo placement, or even arrangement and sound choice. It probably will help on high end but various reference mixes will as well.

The main key of reference mixes is level matching them to your mix (ie usually turning them down considerably) as comparing your probably quiet mix to a loud one will be demotivating, and also cause you to make incorrect assumptions such as adding more bass and/or highs due to fletcher munson.

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Reasonable man
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Post 10 Aug 2019

WarStar wrote:
09 Aug 2019
What's the difference between a "hold/freeze" spectrograph option and a pink noise spectrum profile?

Here's some relevant info on pink noise as a reference.

Description of pink noise:
"For every octave you move up in the frequency spectrum, the energy of the noise decreases by half (3dB). The human ear perceives this type of noise as balanced throughout the frequency spectrum. This means that 60Hz is going to sound just as loud as 6000Hz, even though it’s not. With the goal of achieving a balanced mix, you can take this knowledge (that pink noise sounds balanced throughout the frequency spectrum) and apply it to your songs."

Further explanation of "why" pink noise is a helpful reference:
"Recall that the Fletcher-Munson Curve tells us that lower frequencies need more energy than higher frequencies to appear to be the same volume, and vice versa."
Just when yo'u've psoted a pic of pro-q.......there's a frequency 'matching' function available on it where you can take a reference track and match its eq curve to your own where pro q will draw in a an algorythmic correction curve to match it.
Have to say i havn't tried it yet myself as and i/m dubious as to it accuracy . For eg if you get your refence track from somewhere like youtube its aleady so hevily compressed that im guessing it has an impact on the eq curve anyway? Someone correct me if i'm wrong

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Dabbler
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Location: Louisville, KY

Post 11 Aug 2019

Well I got pink noise into my rack by using Audacity.

And it is rough on the ears like the guy in the video said.

IDK if it's better than just adjusting based on comments.

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diminished
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Post 11 Aug 2019

Turn it down a few notches and have it run in the background, bring it up when necessary to see if the masking is good.
From the back of my head: I think the original idea started when someone unintentionally had his ventilation running in the studio and linked it to good mixes.
:reason: Most recent track: The Test (feat. MrFigg) || Others: on my YouTube channel •ᴗ•

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selig
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Post 11 Aug 2019

Reasonable man wrote:
10 Aug 2019
WarStar wrote:
09 Aug 2019
What's the difference between a "hold/freeze" spectrograph option and a pink noise spectrum profile?

Here's some relevant info on pink noise as a reference.

Description of pink noise:
"For every octave you move up in the frequency spectrum, the energy of the noise decreases by half (3dB). The human ear perceives this type of noise as balanced throughout the frequency spectrum. This means that 60Hz is going to sound just as loud as 6000Hz, even though it’s not. With the goal of achieving a balanced mix, you can take this knowledge (that pink noise sounds balanced throughout the frequency spectrum) and apply it to your songs."

Further explanation of "why" pink noise is a helpful reference:
"Recall that the Fletcher-Munson Curve tells us that lower frequencies need more energy than higher frequencies to appear to be the same volume, and vice versa."
Just when yo'u've psoted a pic of pro-q.......there's a frequency 'matching' function available on it where you can take a reference track and match its eq curve to your own where pro q will draw in a an algorythmic correction curve to match it.
Have to say i havn't tried it yet myself as and i/m dubious as to it accuracy . For eg if you get your refence track from somewhere like youtube its aleady so hevily compressed that im guessing it has an impact on the eq curve anyway? Someone correct me if i'm wrong
Well, think about it this way. If you heard two different songs that both followed the same EQ curve, let’s say the pink noise curve, could you then assume the two mixes would sound similar? Probably not, because there’s more to a mix than the cumulative result of the amount of energy at each frequency.

For an extreme example, compare a mix that follows the pink noise curve to actual pink noise: BOTH can share the exact same response curve, but will sound MUCH different. Now it follows that giving your mix the same EQ curve of a great mix will not necessarily make your mix sound great. 😏
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