Use of mono channels in dub mixing?

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Use of mono channels in dub mixing?

Post by DigiDubSoundsystem » Tue Sep 03, 2013 1:03 am


I've been trying to make digital dub for some years now, and ive finally reached the point where i can mimic/recreate some of the features of dub music. So i've developed musically with other words, feeling the drums, the guitar, bass and basically make it WORK! :P

The only thing that im stocked and fed up with, is sitting in front of the computer with my mouse hour after hour, clicking.. building up nice sounding tunes, and in the end where it comes to laying effects and make it more interesting in the 'dub kinda sense', finding the arrangements, echo, delay, reverbs. You know what im talking about here ;) I just cant really make up my mind on how to put it all togehter, because i always end up clicking on god damn automation clips and so on, and its a pain to just move all the bits around to experiment if it might fit better here or there.. *sigh* :eek:

So i've come to the conclusion, that i must find a way to do real live dub mixing, but all the methods that i've considered through the times, i always end up with some EXPENSIVE solution, like its the only way, so i have come to realize that i HAVE to compromize, with my selection of gear, because ill never afford a fancy 16 ch mixer , hdd recorder/playback unit you know..

It might seem like a strange idea at first, but heres a method that i have come up with so far, that is realistic and my budget allows me to buy all these things within 2-3months.

Here's what i have in mind 'gear-wise':
6 channel mixer 4 mono, 2 stereo channels, 2 aux sends:

And as a playback unit to get my digital produced drums, guitars, percussion, bass tracks into the mixer.. Well a little explaining needs to be done on this one LOL :)

I'll get 6 of these mp3 players:

Build a 'rectangle project case' named "Cue control", heres what it will do for me. Again it will restrict my oppourtunities, and ease of use, but with some training i think its possible to get used to. Bear in mind theres no way i will be dub mixing like you guys :)

The 'Cue control' box, will have 6 channels. 4 mono, and 2 stereo. The 6 mp3 players will have these audio tracks on them, each will have a 5 seconds empty space, with only a metronome clicking, so that i can "Cue" and pause the track exactly at the beginning, so when i press play, the guitar, bass etc will play in sync:

(panning will be nessecary on all mono channels)

CH 1 (mono): snares, rimshots to add reverb, echo, delays.
CH 2 (mono): guitar skanks, to add reverb, echo, delay.
CH 3 (mono): melody, to add reverb, echo, delay.
CH 4 (mono): various things, to add reverb, echo, delay.
CH 5 (stereo): bass, the most important thing in stereo is the bass! in stereo to lay a good foundation.
CH 6 (stereo) Kick drum, hihat, percussion, these need to be in stereo, and wont need any effect, just lay there in the background to give good foundation with the bass. And if i need effects on some of the percussion, i will program it in the 'various things' audio file!

Back to the cue control, and how it will work.. So, each mp3 player-output will be soldered to a potentiometer for volume control, so i got 6 individual volume knobs, to turn up for the one im going to put in the mix. all 6 knobs will be soldered to each other and end up on a Master volume knob, with a headphone output jack.

Homemake headphones, simple.. i take to headphones and cut off one side of both, and put them togehter, with left side connected to the "cue control" and the right side in my mixer headphone output, so ill be able to hear what im cue, while having the master mix in my right side. Clever huh!? :grin:

Everything is thought through how it going to be soldered together, i can try to explain it to you.. One side of the mp3player-stereo-jack-output goes to 10k potentiometer, and then into the master potentiometer of the "cue control", and then into a jack mono out to my left side headphones. The other stereo ouput from the mp3player goes uncut to the mixing console to its desired channel :)

This is the best way i can describe how im going to do, feel free to add suggestions, solutions, what ever :) Feel free to say it sounds stupid, well it all makes sense to me. This is my best shot for a dub mixing setup on a budget guys :D think i've been thinking about how to make alernative setups like this for a thousand times! Finally one that will WORK!

Oh yeah, almost forgot, what do you guys use your mono channels for in your mixes?

Over and out!
- Digi Dub Soundsystem

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Joined: Wed Apr 13, 2011 7:17 pm

Post by AUX1Dub » Thu Oct 17, 2013 5:39 pm

Ok that all sounds like a huge mess. Sorry. Here is how I would build a cheap Dub rig. This is how I HAVE done it. I scavenged most of this stuff from friends.

1. Buy the cheapest mixer you can find(a quick CL search I found a Sunn SP 2212 for $125)
2. Get reverb pedal and echo pedal.($100 each ?)
3. Get a SIIG 7.1 surrond sound. That is an 8 channel soundcard. Set your ASIO up to use all 8 as split mono instead of stereo pairs. ( ... No=5023858) ($40)
4. Buy 4 MONO RCA to Stereo 1/8 cables and 8 MONO RCA to 1/4 adapters.($50)
5. Get cheap tape deck.($20-30)
6. Record Dub.
total aprox $460


Buy a cheap USB mixer like a UC33-E or whatever is comparable.($150-$450?)

Downside with method one. Terrible sound quality. I would just listen to the tapes. Upside, all live direct to tape.

Downside with method two. Just not the same. I did Dub for a while like this. Its also very tempting to "clean up" your Dubs automation. Making it no longer a Dub. Upside, cheap and easy.

I would go with hardware. Its better to upgrade peices here and there. Once you have a mixer, get a Focusrite or MAudio multiout interface. Use the pedals as subtle send FX when you get better ones. It is endless possibilities.

Little tip. If your mixer has sub-groups, run your FX from sub-group sends to FX and back to channel strip. It is easier to flick a fader than a return knob. And faster. For an echo feedback, turn down feedback on the echo and turn on the same sub-group send the echo is on. This way fader volume governs feedback.

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Post by Reggae Crusader » Sat Oct 19, 2013 8:13 pm

Just buy something to control everything manually.

Like MPD32 by akai, fairly cheap and does what it supposed to. (also includes ableton which is a great daw)

Just map your controller to whatever effect or setting you want.

Then just play it live, automate it live. Feel it.

You can redub any track as many times as you want ofc.

And when done you can click around with mouse for last touches.

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