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About APZX

  • Rank
    Mudkip (+150)
  • Birthday 10/04/1989

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Warner Robins, GA


  • Biography
    Just a guy trying to make music.
  • Real Name
    Austin Simons
  • Steam ID

Artist Settings

  • Collaboration Status
    2. Maybe; Depends on Circumstances
  • Software - Digital Audio Workstation (DAW)
    FL Studio
  • Composition & Production Skills
    Arrangement & Orchestration
    Drum Programming
    Mixing & Mastering
    Recording Facilities
    Synthesis & Sound Design

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  • Skype

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  1. APZX

    MnP 88: Maniac Mansion - Dave's Theme

    @HoboKa Sorry to say, but you also got the wrong tune on YouTube. It should be
  2. APZX

    MnP 87: Metroid Prime - Overworld 2

    @Dextastic You don't have use the gate as a full on gate either. Just use it to turn down the sustain part automagically
  3. APZX

    MnP 87: Metroid Prime - Overworld 2

    I guess it would be the way that instruments are placed. You can have extremely short reverbs that'd do pretty much what I'm hearing. But you are right there isn't any reverb there. Some tips. The single largest issue you have going on that I can hear is that everything is fighting for the number one spot. That just doesn't happen. For one sound to have something it has to take away something from another. Choose one sound you want to be the focal point. Then make everything fit around that one sound, for example the strings. Now, the strings aren't going to be your instrument here. So, what is another big focus? How about those timpanis (they sound like them or they could be taikos, but the attack is different). There is a lot of sustain on them. You've now got a choice to make. Do you just let their sustained portion run into one another creating a constant rumble? Or do you space hits so that the sustain of each hit ends before the next hit? Or do you try and quell the rumble in the mix? Of course you still have to consider the rest of the percussion. The snare? Where is it going to sit in relation to the timpani and the strings? What about the hats? How are they going to interact with the strings, timpani, and snare? How about that guitar (again I think it is a guitar, almost like a picked bass)? How are you going to integrate that in with the rest of the instrumentation? These aren't just mix focused questions, they are compositional questions first and foremost because the start of a solid mix is where the composition has everything basically where it ought to be. Sure some sounds might need a nudge or two, but in general things should be working in the composition. Well before you ever hit the notion of mixing.
  4. APZX

    MnP 87: Metroid Prime - Overworld 2

    You're more patient an individual than myself lol.
  5. APZX

    MnP 87: Metroid Prime - Overworld 2

    Got my entry up. The one thing I've always admired about the Metroid Prime OST is its ability to be both beautiful and scary at the same time.
  6. APZX

    EDM kicks

    I rather like Wave Alchemy's stuff. They have some free stuff, and they have a free EDM oriented kick drum pack, Club Kicks. Give a look to their free samples as well. Some pretty solid stuff there including some quite nice 707 samples (quite an awesome kick honestly), some samples of a Vermona DRM (slightly biased as I have one of these myself, but excellent samples), and MS-20 Mini (these are some pretty darn solid and tight samples).
  7. APZX

    Not cool bro panel.

    Frankly, it is kind of a crapshoot. It isn't like in mixing where you can make a very good mix just using the bundled with the DAW. However, with synths or samples you've unfortunately gotta spend $$$. It kind of sucks to say it, but it is the truth. I mean I don't do orchestral music because I find the libraries 1 - Too Big 2 - Too Expensive and 3 - Too complicated. And this is coming from a guy who loves modular synths with more knobs than you can throw a stick at. But that doesn't mean everyone should be all synths all the time. I enjoy listening to well crafted orchestral takes on songs, and I like using real strings from time to time myself, but then again I kind of obfuscate them in my tracks because I just want the hint of realism and their additional qualities rather than having them as my main focus. But I do have some quite nice soundfont pianos because there a couple of good ones that are free. The best probably being the Salamander Grand Piano. But I digress. If you recognize their intent then I do feel it is probably best to let them know that with their current tools they're unlikely to achieve what they want or are going for. This isn't really a disservice, but frankly a truth. Sure it is a bit cold, but what are you to do? I mean you don't have to come out and be a total downer when you say it. A lot about how you'd approach the situation is really just how you say it. At least that is what I've found.
  8. APZX

    Ozone 8

    If you want something overkill for 99% of the situations you'll encounter then yeah Ozone would be a great choice. However, if you want stuff that'll be more useful then @shadowpsyc brings up an excellent point. Monitoring. You can't really know if you're doing good or harm without something telling you honestly that you are doing good or harm to the sound. So, I +1 that comment. With that being said, I do also understand the want or desire for extra VSTs or such for mixing or effects. I personally really dislike PEQ2 because is in HQ mode it has unreported latency that can cause problems. Though as a main EQ I'd find it too fiddly most of the time because it is a Parametric EQ, and they certainly do have their uses. However, most of the time I just need a couple of simple bells and a couple of shelving filters for my EQ work with HPF and LPF. The EQ I use most of the time when I'm mixing is one modeled after a Neve 1081 (how close it sounds, I don't know, nor do I care). What I care about is how fast I can get what I want out of it. In that regard it is perfect. Limited, but plenty flexible for most situations you'll ever encounter in mixing. I guess my biggest suggestion is to find a set of tools that you like and can use quickly. That is probably the bigger thing here. Ozone is a big giant collection of processing that would probably be useful from time to time, but not often enough I'd say to go and get right now.
  9. APZX

    Not cool bro panel.

    I was not directing it at you per se, you just happened to say it Written language is a bit fickle and forums are sometimes kind of hard to clearly state what you want to say without sounding like a twat sometimes.
  10. APZX

    Not cool bro panel.

    That there I feel brings into question a larger more overriding notion that is merely being glossed over here. You even mention a good example yourself, Trance versus Jazz. I'm a Trance head for the record. So, repetition in Trance is very much a thing, and is really a core tenet of the genre as a whole. However, if you go listen to Trance you'll find that it is actually less repetitive than you might think. The texture of the track is varied and modulated throughout. Someone who listens for chord changes and progressions is likely to be bored as a result of this. I think Trance is actually kind of a bad choice in this comparison and would instead choose Minimal as it is far more repetitious, or you could even throw Ambient in there. Even then those two genres have their own kind of movement to them that should be taken into consideration. To simply ignore this is missing a core principle of the genre at hand, and not looking at things from the appropriate perspective. Just my $0.02.
  11. @Dextastic I've got nothing against Rock or Metal, heck I love me some Prog or Psychedelic Rock and some Metal stuff. It is just that really most of the time it is the people behind the guitars rather than the guitars themselves that I have an issue with. Not trying to imply anything just a "general observation". Also, no problem giving some techniques for dealing with things in a mix. I've done a few Hard Rock and a couple of Metal Mixes and there is definitely some different things than you might think. Something else to consider when mixing is that tricks that you may have used in one mix may come in handy for a mix that is completely and utterly unrelated in both genre and style than where you learned it. You'd think that I'd never turn to distortion in a non-rock/metal mix, but surprisingly it comes in handy in all sorts of places. In particular I like using it on bass too make it easier the ear to find it in the mix if it is quite dull.
  12. @Dextastic With the compressor pretty much, but you'll need to adjust based on taste and even play with different compressors as they're attack and release curves will change the way the sound behaves. Just gotta experiment a bit. I can tell you that for this particular application I really really like vladg's Molot. I know it is written in the Cyrillic alphabet, but there is an English option and I like to do this in the "Alpha" mode because it isn't quite as aggressive. It is preference and I've used different compressors for the application just based on various things from changes to the timbre to fitting better in with the other instruments. Compression in general is quite a complex topic and it'd take me way too long to explain in any reasonable detail about how it works or the various ways to use to manipulate space or even forcing one without a sidechain input to react in an almost dynamic EQ kinda way. But with that being said you've really just gotta experiment with it to find something that really works for you. I can tell you that I have a lot of compressors because I find unlike EQs I can get more color out of them and that is typically what I end up doing on a lot of sounds. Rather than using them strictly for mixing. I say compression on the guitars because even though distorted guitars are already quite compressed it isn't the end all be all to further coloring them with compression Much to learn about that you do! But some things you can try to give the guitars some more weight. Put on a different hat for distortion for a minute. Think of distortion as a way to generate new and extra harmonics that you can then manipulate to your advantage. For example you could try some frequency selective parallel distortion to add in some extra girth that you can then mix in with the original to give them more heft if they're missing it. Kind of like the old trick of gating a tone generator from a kick to make it beefier in the mix. Since you have 4 guitars in this particular case then I would look at doing something a bit different personally. I'd take two of them and hard pan them and leave them mostly alone (EQ, compression, etc.) but pan the other's about midway left and right then play with distortion on them and make those heavier sounding. This would likely widen the mix with two different guitar layers at two different stereo positions, but would also have the effect of making the center seem "heavier" and leaving the sides "lighter" further adding to width without really sacrificing any mono compatibility As for the synths, I mean they kinda work. The brass is actually a pretty good sounding brass stab, but it sounds like it came from a ROMpler of some description. I like the piano quite a bit, and I love the sync lead but it is so buried and overshadowed by everything else in that section that it kind of loses its impact While this may sound kind of biased or such, I really really dislike guitars lol. Not because there is anything wrong with them, but just because I'm not a guitar guy and everyone talking about them makes it sound like there are humongous differences between ancient humbucklers and modern ones. Look Solid body vs Hollow Body? Easily understandable differences in sound. But I feel arguing about a 139048 year old humbuckler is like the synth guys saying that there is a huge difference in the way a 50 year old Minimoog sounds versus a clone from like Studio Electronics. Look is there a difference? Probably, but is it worth all that money for it? Probably not. I'm a synth head and I love synths. It is easier to impress me with guitars than it is with synths. Suuns' 2020 (warning epileptic seizure warning) has a guitar sound that I love because I've never really heard it before and plus it is super creepy and unsettling. The bass is a synth and super dark and brooding. Both of those sounds impress me. Mord Fustang's Lick the Rainbow (terrible name I know), but this has quite a few synth sounds that just impress me. Still trying to figure out that bass sound myself. So much breath and life in that. Your synth sounds aren't bad, but if you want something to really show you what is possible with just one synth, then look no further than KVR's One Synth Challenge (I've entered a few myself) and let me tell you some of the sounds people are able to coax out of these synths is simply astounding.
  13. @Dextastic It doesn't sound all that bad. In fact I rather like the transients on the drums quite a bit. Though if I may make a couple of suggestions. First, while the transient is important on drums in order to prevent the cymbals and the like from being "too" powerful in the mix you may consider actually toning down the sustain portion. You can achieve this in a few ways. Transient Controller can work well in certain situations. Another way is to use a compressor and just crack down on that transient quite a bit and not really use much makeup gain, then apply some EQ (typically 4-8KHz) to bring the transient back. There is also the gate that opens up on the transient but closes on the sustain. You can also play a bit with multi-band compression or even dynamic EQ. Just depends on your desired end result. Second, with the drums you did a solid job of imprinting their space in the mix along with the guitars. However, when things get "fuller" you basically completely run out sonic space in those sections and don't really have separation nor clarity between the various elements. No real tricks here other than good ol' listening and trying to figure out what needs focus and possibly rebalancing the mix on the fly with automation. Bonus bit, the guitars could do with a bit more weight and get on those guitars with some characterful compression. Otherwise pretty darn solid.
  14. Honestly, I've looked at the PRC and MnP things lately and I just haven't jived at all with any of the sources Short of doing a straight cover for them, I dunno. I at least try to remember to vote for them because that is the least I can do even if I don't jive with the source.
  15. APZX

    MnP 79: Megaman X5 - Zero Virus Stage

    Dextastic, Basically, the snare to me is just a pop. I mean if I listen a bit more closely I think I get where you were going, but I mean in context the drums sound too wet except for the hi-hat which may be what is throwing me off. Still I just don't like the snare. I'd say if you want that kind of big wet snare then gate the reverb on it. If that is the natural sound of the snare then I'd work on de-reverbing it so I could control the amount of reverb present myself. Ultimately, the issue I have is a personal thing. There is nothing wrong "technically" with the snare. Silverpool, The hi-hat just lacks movement. You use FL, right? Go to the piano roll and select all the notes for that hi-hat and press Alt+R. Deselect Pattern as that will cause all sorts of funkiness that you're not after. Then select Levels. Under there select Bipolar and then move the "Vel" and "Pan" knobs around, also press the "Seed" buttons and this will give the hi-hat some very slight movement. That is the kinda thing I'm talking about. Takes about 30 seconds.