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Mix Session Prep Guide

"Turning your music over to someone else can be scary but I am here to make you sound good and make this process as simple and comforting as possible."

Thank you so much for choosing me to mix your music. Turning your music over to someone else can be scary but I am here to make you sound good and make this process as simple and comforting as possible. 

In order for me to best serve you and your music, I have specific requirements for the way you send me the files for mixing. Adhering to this ensures that I can spend more time making your music sound amazing and get it back to you faster.

 

File Preparation 

 

Before sending your multitrack files for mixing, can you positively answer yes to the following question:

 

Are the songs 100% done (i.e. Formatted exactly how you want them, all parts recorded and edited in the way you want them, etc.)?

 

If your answer is yes, you are ready to prep you files for submission.  If not please feel free to contact me at d_hydrate@hydrateentertainment.com with any questions. 

 

Files can be submitted in one of two ways:

 

  1. Pro Tools Session Folder; complete with its Audio Files folder.

  2. All of the audio files consolidated/bounced/printed/rendered as .wav files.

Submitting A Pro Tools Session

***Please do not just go into your hard drive and drag Pro Tools sessions around.  In order for all files to get to me properly, follow the steps below.***

 

Each song should be submitted as it’s own Pro Tools Session Folder. If at any point you are unsure about a step, do not hesitate to contact me for help.

 

  1. Open the Pro Tools session and immediately create a copy by going to File > Save As

    • Name it “Song Title_Mix Prep”

  2. If you have not already done so, Bounce a version of the current rough mix as is and import it into the session. 

    • Name the track ROUGH MIX and Mute it

  3. Ensure that all tracks in the session are named appropriately (i.e. the name describes the audio it contains)

  4. Organize similar tracks together (i.e. 808s with drums, Ad Libs with vocals, etc.)

    • You can color code them if you like, but it is not required.

  5. Delete any inactive tracks that are not being used in the mix.

    • Some of these may be hidden, so open up the track list to ensure that you‘ve deleted all the unused tracks.

  6. If you used playlist on any tracks for different takes and/or comping, ensure that the main (visible) playlist is the one you want mixed.

  7. Commit all Virtual/Midi Instrument tracks to audio.

  8. If you have any plugins on the tracks that are imperative to the sound of that source (i.e. Auto-Tune, amp simulation, analogue saturation, etc.), Commit those plugins to the tracks to create a new consolidated audio file with the effects printed into to file.

    • Do not fret if you are unsure how to do this, this ARTICLE will explain how to do this. If that is not enough, contact me.

  9. After you’ve followed all of the previous steps, play the song all the way through to ensure that all of the committing and bouncing that was done sounds the same as it did before. If everything sounds good, you are ready to save the session.

  10. Click File > Save Copy In

    • In the box that popped up check the following boxes in the ‘Items to Copy’ section:

      • All Audio Files

      • Main Playlist Only

    • When you click ‘OK’ or press Enter, the operating system file management window will pop up. Navigate to the folder you saved your songs to and if you have not done so already, create a new folder and name it “FOR MIX”

    • Save the Pro Tools Session to this newly created folder.

      • You will save the rest of the sessions to this same folder, so take note of the location.

  11. Repeat the above steps for all of the songs to be mixed.

  12. Once all of the Save Copy Ins have been saved, zip the FOR MIX folder and upload it to the link that has or will be provided to you.

 

 

Submitting .wav FILES

 

  1. Open the session and immediately create a copy by going to File > Save As.

    • Name it “Song Title_Mix Prep”

  2. If you have not already done so, Bounce a version of the current rough mix as is and import it into the session. 

    • Name the track ROUGH MIX and Mute it

  3. Ensure that all tracks in the session(s) are named appropriately (i.e. the name describes the audio it contains)

  4. If you used playlist on any tracks for different takes and/or comping, ensure that the main (visible) playlist is the one you want mixed.

  5. If you have any plugins on the tracks that are not imperative to the sound of that source (i.e. Auto-Tune, amp simulation, analogue saturation, etc.), disable or remove those plugins from the tracks.

  6. Select all tracks for the entire length of the song

  7. Bounce/Export all selected tracks as .wav files (keep the same Sample Rate and Bit Depth you recorded the files at)

    • When you click ‘OK’ or press Enter, the operating system file management window will pop up. Navigate to the folder you saved your songs to and if you have not done so already, create a new folder and name it “FOR MIX”

    • These files should be saved to a folder named “Song Title_FILES FOR MIX”

    • Within this folder, divide the audio files into folders based on type (i.e. Drums, Guitars, Vocals, etc).

  8. Repeat the above steps for all of the songs to be mixed.

  9. Once all of the songs have had their files saved and organized in their respective folders, zip the FOR MIX folder and upload it to the link that has or will be provided to you.