question What is easier to learn: mixing music or audio mastering?

Hi y'all, the title says it all, doesn't it? Of course, I'd assume both stages can be challenging but I want an overview and that is to say what is easier to learn: music mixing or audio mastering?
 
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@Sekuru Dhorofiya audio mixing is more challenging because of the number of decisions you have to make on a given song, plus the number of people you have to answer to e.g. band members arguing about the sound of a kick drum, lead guitar, the level of vocals on the chorus (or hook), etc the list goes on and on it's endless.

I am not saying mastering music is easy but it's a process (or the final stage) that doesn't necessarily involve a lot of people skills and also there isn't too much technical stuff to be done to a decent mix. It's either you have good taste or you don't. If you have bad taste you will ruin something that already sounds like a finished record and just needs more level i.e. brickwall limiting (or...

Sadzandiuraye

initiate
@Sekuru Dhorofiya audio mixing is more challenging because of the number of decisions you have to make on a given song, plus the number of people you have to answer to e.g. band members arguing about the sound of a kick drum, lead guitar, the level of vocals on the chorus (or hook), etc the list goes on and on it's endless.

I am not saying mastering music is easy but it's a process (or the final stage) that doesn't necessarily involve a lot of people skills and also there isn't too much technical stuff to be done to a decent mix. It's either you have good taste or you don't. If you have bad taste you will ruin something that already sounds like a finished record and just needs more level i.e. brickwall limiting (or maximization).
 
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Mixing is harder without a doubt. Imagine having to deal with over 100 audio tracks, you also constantly have to keep up with the ever-changing music trends. But then again like everything else in the music business it comes down to what you get from the previous stage.

You'd have to be a complete noob to screw up a great arrangement, recording, and production (e.g. sound design and drum programming). Otherwise, less is more. Study long, study wrong.
 
J

James Moore

guest
Both mixing and mastering can be relatively easier to learn when you are being taught and regularly given constructive feedback by someone (or an experienced group of sound engineers) who have worked on hundreds of successful records and not people without a single credit that anyone can lookup.

This is the dilemma I think many people encounter. Those with a vast amount of knowledge are busy working on records whilst the average Joe and plain Jane is on YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, Twitch, etc making misleading videos about music production.

I am not going to bother mentioning the need for a good monitoring system, room acoustics, etc.
 
L

Lodza

guest
Does the loudness of music come mainly from mixing or mastering?

Proper audio mixing is the key to loudness, in my opinion. And by proper sound mixing, I am talking about addressing the usual elephant in the room i.e. frequency masking and of course, the balance of the most important elements (or instruments) in a mix relative to those that should perhaps be pushed in the background where they belong.
 
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Xanadu

guest
In both cases, it depends on whether you are learning on your own or from someone else. Watching various YouTube or several MWTM ("Mix With The Masters") tutorials can be helpful too.

You must also understand, nevertheless, that neither mixing nor audio post-production ("mastering") have a set formula. Practice makes perfect, I mean maybe. Sometimes I guess.
 
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Dzvuke

guest
Regardless of what genre you’re mixing you need to be familiar with the music and how it’s leveled.

Another major drawback many sound engineers succumb to is impostor syndrome.
 
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