Thought of the Day – Headphone Mixes
Just a quick one today.
As an artist, the golden rule while recording is to make sure you are completely comfortable a�� this will increase your chances of getting a great performance. An important thing to consider is the mix you are hearing through your headphones. As engineers we can have a good guess at what might be helpful for you to hear but each performer is different and will need a different balance depending on the song.
It may be that the rhythm of the vocal is particularly important, so you may want to hear more of the drums, or it could be that your vocal follows the lead guitar melody so the guitar should be louder in the mix, etc.
Once you have the perfect mix, the next thing to consider is how you hear your own voice/instrument. Wea��ll focus on vocals for now. Some vocalists like to have reverb on their vocals while they record, whilst some prefer to hear themselves without it. We are used to hearing our voices with some natural ambience, but when recording we sing directly into a microphone which doesna��t pick up much of this ambience, so adding reverb to a headphone mix can feel more natural to us. Another way to achieve a more natural sound is to take one headphone off, but you should always experiment to find what works best for you.
Today we had a vocalist in who was struggling with a particular line a�� the take we ended up using was recorded with the headphones off and hanging around his neck. Getting a good take is much more important than reducing a�?bleeda�� (bleed is when the microphone hears the music playing through your headphones). We generally try to avoid bleed as much as possible, but at low volumes like this it is rarely a problem.