Sunday, March 9

Essential Recording Producer and Engineer Skills

So you think you want to be mixing engineer, mastering engineer or producer at home?

As the years go by, I have finally learn the technique to record, mix and master a song production properly using my own personal computer. It may require trial and error on your part but I strongly suggest not to give up and continue to learn.

The pre-requisite for learning are the following:

a. A fast Windows PC, I recommend Pentium 4 or higher.
b. Big RAM ( at least 1 GB)
c. PCI soundcard.
d. Lots of disk space (at least 120 GB).
e. Mixer
f. Headphones.
g. Digital audio workstation (or it is called as digital audio recording software)
h. High end computer audio monitors (speakers), 2.1 recommended.
i. CD writer.

Please read my 13 Important Factors in Computer Audio Recording,to get a complete information of the most important aspects. Then read my tips on buying a mixer for home recording,to get some advice on purchasing mixers for home recording.

And below are the most important skill checklist to develop or acquire as a recording professional (with assignments whether belongs to mixing, mastering engineer and recording producer):

1. Skill to record sound in a computer.- recording/mixing engineer
2. Skill to remove noise from the recordings. -recording/mixing engineer
3. Skill to amplify and normalize audio wave. -recording/mixing engineer
4. Ability to master the preferred digital audio workstation.-recording/mixing engineer
5. Skill to conduct a multi-track recording.-recording/mixing engineer

6. Skill to realistically panned instruments in the stereo field.-recording/mixing engineer
7. Skill to mix instruments in it's optimal frequency location to prevent mud.-recording/mixing engineer
8. Skill to put proper reverbs or ambience of the recording.-recording/mixing engineer
9. Skill to use properly use the compressor to optimize dynamics-recording/mixing engineer
10. Skill to master the use of effects to get professional recording.-recording/mixing engineer
11. Skill to optimize mixing volumes prior to mixdown.-recording/mixing engineer
12. Skill in dithering.-mixing/mastering engineer
13. Skill to detect out of tune instruments.-mixing engineer/mastering engineer/recording producer
14. Ability to adjust mixing console to get the targeted sound (by listening to some reference)-recording/mixing engineer
15. Ability to follow the commercial radio mixing trend.-mixing engineer/recording producer/mastering engineer
16. Ability to detect the central frequency of the most common musical instruments where maximum amplitude occurs.-mixing engineer
17. Ability to produce real drum sounds in the mix.-mixing engineer
18. Skill to initiate the mastering session.-mastering engineer
19. Maximizing the track volumes without distortion-mastering engineer
20. Skill in normalizing volumes- mastering engineer/mixing engineer
21. Skill in produce a CD master for replication-mastering engineer
22. Skill in selecting the best songs for the album- recording producer
23. Ability to detect potential hit songs before releasing the songs- recording producer
24. Ability to manage the entire recording session (from mixing to mastering)-recording producer
25. Ability to arrange the song parts for best results after song production- recording producer
26. Ability to produce successful recordings- recording producer
27. Ability to select the best crew for the recording session- recording producer
28. Ability to select the best artist to represent the material- recording producer
29. Ability to hear what is commercial good and what is crap- recording producer/mixing engineer/mastering engineer.

So many skills, to have all is a blessing. Read this blog and I will share my experiences to develop all the necessary abilities and skills to successfully record, mix and produce a song.

Misty Edwards lyrics and music

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