With all the amazing software available these days it only takes a small amount of know how to set up what is effectively a makeshift mini recording studio in your own home. However there is only so far that such a setup can take you without a huge outlay in equipment and a great deal more expertise and experience. You could have recorded your demo or song on home equipment and just feel that it sounds a little flat or missing that little bit of a boost that proper mixing can offer. That is where a recording studio can step in.
A proper recording studio will have an engineer in place who specializes in professional mixing. Essentially a professional mix involves the following:
- The loading up of individual stems (vocal and instrumental files) into a quality recording system
- The subsequent analysis of each individual element of the track to determine the suitable EQ, compression, dynamics, panning, layering and doubling as well as what effects will give your track some extra punch or accentuate its finer qualities
- Any vocal layers will be corrected for pitch and alignment
- Any drums that have been recorded can benefit from re-triggering or the addition of extra layers to add punch if necessary.
The end result of the combined power that these steps will add will be the creation of extra clarity, space and a cleaner and crisper final mix.
In answering why you should trust a professional studio and engineer with your beloved home recordings you need to consider the facts. It is incredibly difficult and costly to create a bedroom setup capable of mixing it with the big boys. That is not to say it can’t be done, but it will take years of experience, a huge financial outlay, practice and a great deal of natural flair for the job. In essence, by taking your recording to a professional studio you are bypassing years of experience and vast sums of money to get a one off, top notch result for a fair amount of money. Your engineer will have worked with all manner of source material, dealt with a wide range of special demands and have a great ear for how best to tweak your home recording to ensure that the end result does it justice.
You will be able to have a good, detailed conversation with the engineer at your chosen professional studio and make sure that when you do you have a little checklist of questions, requests and a little appraisal of what you think is not quite right, or not quite aligned with your vision of your work. You should, at the end of this conversation, be able to understand at least a little of the value that the studio can add to your source material. Getting your work mixed professionally may be a little bit of an outlay financially, but you just need to ask yourself how much you value your work and how seriously you take your art to get the answer as to whether taking advantage of the dedicated work of a professional is worth it in the end.