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AW: Powered Subs...on to mastering

> Yup. I am investing in some studio monitors. Probably the 
> Event ALP5 or Mackie HR625 MKII. I need to stop mastering 
> with my headphones, which aren't even studio headphones, but consumer.

The second statement is very true. For speakers, I would suggest you find a
store which has a rather decent setup for comparing them (i.e. has a few of
them set up with matched levels and an easily accesible switcher). My
personal suggestion would be the Dynaudio BM5A, which for some really
obscure reason sounds better than their more expensive BM6A (which is in 
same price range as the Mackie). For what you save in comparison to the
Mackie pair, you could almost get a BM9S sub (or not - I'd reckon prices in
the U.S. are somewhat different).
The Mackie (to my ears) has a somewhat "spiced up" sound, especially in the
low mid and low department. However, speakers are very much a matter of
taste - what will work for me may not work for you and vice versa.

> > For me, there's a simple rule which will you give better results
> > immediately: use a compressor/limiter not to increase 
> loudness, but to 
> > make it sound better.
> Well, that is entirely unhelpful, Rainer! :)  Which of one 
> million subjective definitions of better shall I use?

The most simple one: yours! Hey, you're not making music so the biggest
possible percentage of the world population will buy it, but to make a few
people (including you, and sometimes me) happy.

More precisely: there are a few things which the human hearing usually
doesn't work that well with, at least in typical listening conditions. If
you mix instruments with a huge dynamic range (e.g. bass guitar direct into
the board) with some instruments with a limited dynamic level (e.g. organ,
at least with a good player), then the bass guitar will be too loud and too
soft at the same time - simply because the attacks will always pierce
through the organ and the sustain will get lost. The solution: compression.
Read up the characteristics of a LA2A which I like on bass (my POD 
it) and use it.

When we talk about settings for compressors and limiters, I guess we'd need
to discern between mixing (per track) and mastering (2bus) use. And (again:
"fix it in the mix" strategy), careful use of per-track compression will
automatically make your listening experience more enjoyable and mixing

But you want it again more specific, and more specific I shall become:

(found the last chapter very helpful).

> Oh no. I would prefer that mixes of my own music be on the 
> level of, let's say, a professional jazz CD...but not, let's 

You mean like -25dB RMS (example: "Blues" - Keith Jarret/The Paris Concert,
ECM 1401 839 173-2)

> > Define "original dynamic range".

what I meant by this question is explained below, where I go on about the
concert grand and the jazz guitar into laptop through amp and speaker

> compression. Yet, I also want to put my CD in a player and 
> not have to turn up the volume radically to sound as loud as 
> other professioanl jazz recordings. I want some consistency 
> with other productions in a similar genre. See the situation now?

Why that? What is the maximum position (on a scale from 0 to 10) you or 
friends usually operate their stereos at?

> > A trick I like, btw, is (as you referred to the Waves 
> stuff) what they 
> > describe as "midrange compression" on their C1 manual. One 

> I tried that on a song, if I follow you correcly. I tried to 
> flatten out the frequency range so that it wasn't bulging in 
> the mid range area...then I applied L2 to get it up to level. 

No, I meant what is described by the passages referred when you search for
"mid-level" in the C1 Setup Guide.