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I want you to know that I have no education in music production. I am self-taught now for almost two years. I score orchestral music using FL Studio, but I have a problem. The sounds are different depening if I listen with semi-high quality earbuds or high quality speakers. Mixing while using the earbuds will overpower the low frequencies on the speakers, but mixing with the speakers will eliminate all the warm bass when listening on earbuds. Professional music does not have this problem. I would be greatful if someone could explain the reason and how to fix it. Thank you!

  • This question is too broad. You have to learn to mix bass which is a part of mixing the whole track. So you have to learn mixing :) – frcake Jun 5 '17 at 1:15
  • Ooo, have to second frcake, there is a lot that goes into mixing and it takes a long to learn (properly). You can mix on earbuds, assist with a spectrum analyzer if needed (f.ex. the free SPAN) so you see your EQ curve, but have in mind that mixing is just one step in chain, then mastering which gives that final polished sound. If you have problems getting the levels right I would recommend you sending your stems to a mastering service until you feel you have bass/levels etc. under control. It's indeed a very broad topic. – epistemex Jul 31 '17 at 17:37
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    "Professional music does not have this problem." I'm gonna have to disagree. All audio is effected by the device it is played though. Professional music may be mixed so the difference is small, but it still changes. – user22688 Aug 14 '17 at 15:08
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This is why studio monitors used in recording produce neutral sound as close to 1:1 as possible. Consumer audio gear, either because of being cheap or because of being intentionally biased, have a strong impact on the way playback sounds. These changes are designed such that they will play back a neutrally mixed sound to the best of the particular design's ability. If you mix based on something that is heavily biased, this constraint is no longer true and the result is that it will sound much worse on the other end of the spectrum from whatever you mixed on.

Thinking of it another way, consumer gear is basically like a tinted window. People are used to seeing the tint when they look through the particular type of window, so they don't think anything of it, but if you took the image from one window and looked at it through another different type of window, things end up looking very wrong.

You want your mix to sound as natural as possible on a flat system and then rely on each particular "window" that various speakers provide to reproduce that natural sound in a way that the user is used to.

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Complicated question when you understand it:

  • professional musicians normally test their music across a wide variety of setups prior to releasing to the public. That means they may have a variety of different pieces of hardware that they'll test prior to releasing to public. Obviously, you can replicate this is by testing with your own, your friends, and your family's sound gear, somehow gaining access to a sound studio, copying to your phone and then testing on a variety of hardware at your local electronics retailer, etc...
  • they'll also have 'reference/studio type gear' as well. This is gear that is basically designed to have 'little to no sound bias'. Namely, no bias (treble, bass, mid, etc...) in the way they re-produce sound. This means that once you create a 'master track' and produce it via this type of gear it will sound the same if someone down the line uses 'reference/studio type gear' as well (good example of this are ATH-M50X headphones which are often described as having a flat EQ curve/sound to them). It also means that the if people down the line have biased gear the 'relative distance' between your gear and their gear is likely to be smaller
  • another thing is that professional musicians also generally know how to produce/mix things better as has been stated by frcake. There are plenty of tips online about this but one thing I've noticed about them is that they have more experience, understand sound better, and they generally understand how their sound differs to others. A good example of this is their use of 'reference tracks'. If you can listen in and understand how the 'sound signature' differs from current sound and how you want to sound it will give you a easier time in doing what you want. How you achieve this is ultimately up to you whether by taking a course, studying from freely available online resources, purchasing music production magazines or books, listening to heaps of music, etc...

http://edmprod.com/50-tips-mixdowns/

https://www.subbassdj.com/blog/top-10-mixdown-tips-tutor-alex-grover

  • one more thing to note is that in some cases professional may have professional level gear as well. What I mean by this is that in some higher end sound studios they may have software which can take the sound signature (for instance, EQ curve) from one track and then apply it to another. Very useful to get a sonic signature applied to an arbitrary track and speeds up the process of production drastically as well. Can get a bit pricey depending on the solution you choose though

https://www.gearslutz.com/board/mastering-forum/644921-best-eq-cloning-replicating-spectrums.html

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Easiest rule of thumb: always eq the low end more than you think you need to. You want a flat mix.

-Everyone loves bass that fills the room, but If you pay attention and load up your favorite tracks into FL studio and pull up an EQ, you'll see there actually isn't much bass. (0-60ish Hz).

-if you need to,try boosting bass around 130ishHz to get a more prominent sound, without drowning the room in bass, creating a muddy mix. I usually lower bands 1 and 2 this way first!

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