How to Use a Micro Pitch Shifter to Enhance the Feel of a Mix

Transcript:

Hey, folks. Matthew Weiss here — www.mixingedm.com, www.mixinghiphop.com.

This lesson is going to be sort of an interesting one. It’s going to be a little tough. You’re going to have to focus on some pretty subtle stuff, but if you’ve watched my videos, you know a reoccurring theme is feel, because I’m really very concerned with the feel of a record. It’s actually more important than the “sonics” of a record, and how we manipulate sonics can really manipulate feel, which ultimately is what manipulates the feel that the listener gets, and that’s what’s really important.

What I want you to do is listen to the overall feeling of fullness and body in the record. Don’t listen to any one particular instrument.

[song plays]

Okay, so that’s super subtle, right? But you notice it. Here it is in solo.

[synth plays, before and after Ultra Channel]

What it is, is this Eventide Ultra Channel has a micro pitch shift sort of based off of some of the presets on the Eventide harmonizer, and it’s adding a little bit of extra stereo size, and it’s sort of smearing that sound a little bit and making it more present.

So, this one key little thing kind of makes the difference between a full sounding record, and an almost full sounding record. So, as we’re learning to mix, and this is sort of an ongoing process, but as we’re learning to mix, we hit these plateau points where you get suddenly a lot better because certain things just seem to click, and then you kind of plateau out, and you make slow improvements as you start problem solving more generic type things, and then something clicks again and you make a big jump.

The way that we go through this process, and this is really important, is by experimenting and taking the time of trying things, and really trying to determine what we want to hear.

So, this little thing, this process of using what’s effectively a doubler, or a micro shifter, or a harmonizer, came from listening to a lot of these records that were being done, primarily using analog outboard gear, and hearing a sort of smeariness that I really liked, and for the longest time I thought it was actually because of the board, or because of the analog hardware or something, and then I realized that people were just using these Eventide harmonizers a lot, and I don’t have one at home, so figuring out how to do it in the box had become a little mini-quest of mine, and it sort of clicked in a number of ways, and now I can bring in that sort of full, smeariness that I like to add extra size, extra texture, extra tone to a record.

Alright, guys. Until next time.

Matthew Weiss

Matthew Weiss

Matthew Weiss is a Grammy nominated and Spellemann Award winning audio engineer from Philadelphia. Matthew has mixed songs for Snoop, Sonny Digital, Gorilla Zoe, Uri Caine, Dizzee Rascal, Arrested Development, 9th Wonder, !llmind & more. Get in touch: Weiss-Sound.com.
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