March 08, 2017

One Mixing Technique You Shouldn't Live Without

Want your drums to be:

  •      Louder?
  •      Punchier?
  •      Fuller?
  •      More Resonant?
  •      Better With Just A Single Tool?

There’s really only one tool you need to add to your collection to make all of this happen: a clipper.

Clipping: The Smart Way

We know what clipping is, and we’re warned against it in most situations. Clipping a track by turning it up too loud is harsh and unnatural. In the analog world, clipping was a semi-common practice to create saturation and compression. When working in the digital realm, engineers quickly found that 1s and 0s weren’t quite as forgiving. This is where clipper plugins have quickly found a void to fill.

Why Your Drums Need Clipping

Drums are perhaps the most dynamic instrument there is. With every single hit, you have a massively loud transient spike, followed by the body and ring of the drum shell. The problem here is that the transient and body are imbalanced. You’re really dealing with two completely different sounds sharing a single “track” in your mix.

Using a clipper like DF-CLIP on your drums gives you control. By cutting off the transient, you’re able to boost the gain of the track, bringing out the tone of the drum and increasing perceived loudness.

Going Beyond Clipping

DF-CLIP takes the clipping process a step further by providing a multi-band interface. By treating your drums with in a band-specific manner, you can better target the low-end content of toms, kicks and snares. By treating each band independently, you maintain control of your sound and process. Decide you’d rather not break it down that far? Flipping back over to a single band view is a single click.

Looking For More On Clipping Before Starting?

Our guide “Get Your Drums To Cut Through Any Mix” goes into historical approaches to drum processing, and compares the latest in clipper technology side-by-side with other common processing like compression and limiting.

When working in the digital realm, engineers quickly found that 1s and 0s weren’t quite as forgiving. This is where clipper plugins have quickly found a void to fill.

Why Your Drums Need Clipping

Drums are perhaps the most dynamic instrument there is. With every single hit, you have a massively loud transient spike, followed by the body and ring of the drum shell. The problem here is that the transient and body are imbalanced. You’re really dealing with two completely different sounds sharing a single “track” in your mix.

Using a clipper like DF-CLIP on your drums gives you control. By cutting off the transient, you’re able to boost the gain of the track, bringing out the tone of the drum and increasing perceived loudness.

Going Beyond Clipping

DF-CLIP takes the clipping process a step further by providing a multi-band interface. By treating your drums with in a band-specific manner, you can better target the low-end content of toms, kicks and snares. By treating each band independently, you maintain control of your sound and process. Decide you’d rather not break it down that far? Flipping back over to a single band view is a single click.

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