The Pink Noise Mixing Trick

Mixing. Depending on who you talk to it can be the part of music production that is most looked forward to or put off and avoided like the plague. Why is this? Well in my experience it's because there are so many variables to get right. Levels, panning, EQ, compression, spatial effects, distortion, phase, your monitoring setup, your tiredness levels, your room acoustics... the list goes on and on.

Even then when you think you've got it right you take your newly mixed track which sounds awesome to you and play it somewhere else - in the car, at your friends house, in your DJ set, and surpise surprise it sounds terrible. Nothing like how it did when you mixed it. 

There are myriad issues at to why your mixes don't translate and while going into these right now is beyond the scope of this post, one thing that will definitely help you to get better mixes that not only sound more like you want them to but also translate well is CONSISTENCY. Consistency is so important when it comes to learning mixing because it helps you to focus on ruling out one by one all the different variables you can't trust while you can learn your ears and what your speakers sound like in your space. 

An awesome little trick that helps with this process is the Pink Noise Mixing Trick. This little trick will help you to get a clinically balance mixed in no time at all. It's an awesome starting place and will provide you with not only a little window into what things ACTUALLY sound like on your speakers and in your room - but also a good ear reset if you've gone down the mixing rabbit hole and just don't know whats going on anymore. 

Why pink noise? Why not white or brown noise? Well it all has to do with the way that our ears work. Pink noise - unlike brown and white noise is noise that it more accurately represents how we hear things. Humans don't actually hear things with a flat frequency response. We are way more sensitive to speech and higher frequencies than low frequencies (check out stuff on Fletcher Munson curves to really geek out about this), and we need way more energy to reproduce lower frequencies at a similar perceived volume to higher frequencies. This is why speaker tweeters are way smaller than the woofers. 

So have fun with this and let me know how you got on using this trick!

Download a Pink Noise Mixing Trick Worksheet here.