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In general (for music where lf are not important):

To increase space for dynamic range in audible frequencies, is it a good idea to remove low frequencies when mastering?

More specific:

I am working on a dance track so I want to save some of the lf content that contains vibrations. If the answer on the prev quest is yes, is true also in this case?

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2 Answers 2

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It's definitely bad if ultra-low frequencies take away a significant amount of the power from the rest of the mix. However, that only happens if they are in fact as loud, or louder. If these frequencies fit in principle well in your material (i.e. not just rumble, but nice rythmic sub-punch) you should not kill them completely, rather just push them well below 0dB so they won't trigger the mastering compressors too hard, then they can still give a subtle bit of extra-feel on subwoofers that handle these frequencies by way of rogue power, but your mix will also sound good on less capable speakers.

There's another reason not to cut the low-end too sharply: filters with high Q-values always cause some degree of "smear" in time/phase space, which has stroger consequences in the bass range than in the mid/high domain.

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Yes and yes! Unless you know that your music will be played on equipment that can reproduce those subsonic vibrations, you should remove them. Otherwise, they are just eating up space in your mix.

It can also help to remove audible low frequencies. It seems counterintuitive, but a kick drum often sounds better if you cut out some of the lower frequencies. Try some experiments with your tracks and see how they sound to you.

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