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Hi, i've been hanging around Oc remix FOREVER, since it started up really, and im now trying to see if i can get a remix on the site, but I have quite a few problems with making my music actually SOUND good. I'm good with the actual music and notes and all that jazz, but i'm entirely self taught so balancing and stuff is hard for me, i decided i'd take it one step at a time.

People keep throwing around the term "mud" or something sounds "muddy".

What exactly does that mean? I assume it means all the tracks you use are on the same level of sound, but im not exactly sure what it even means.

It's used all the time to describe my mixes when i ask for critique, so i want to know more about muddyness.


What exactly makes a song muddy?

How do I get rid of the muddy sound in my work?

Does anyone have an example of a song with a muddy and non-muddy version? I really do thing most of my stuff sounds good, and i really have nothing to compare the difference between and i think that would really help.

Thanks ahead of time.

Also I work in garageband.

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Yeah people have pretty much said the jist.

Basically the term muddy means that the different instruments in a mix are undefined and lack clarity.

When you make a mix, you want to give each instrument its own space so you can hear all the different instruments as clearly as possible. If for example you have a mix with a loud and clear lead, but you strain to hear all the different instruments in the background, then your background mix is muddy.

Reverb as Protodome said can be a reason, if the reverb is particularly excessive. A lack of EQ or bad EQing can contribute to the problem because if you have two instruments that take up similar spaces in the frequency spectrum or similar "roles" - like two basses at once - they can both end up fighting for the same space in the frequency spectrum. I like to think of it like a jigsaw puzzle, all the pieces have their place in the mix.

Ways you can get around muddiness is:

EQing - like I mentioned before, changing the frequency range of certain instruments can help. Say you got a strong bass but you got another instrument - say a polysynth for example - thats bass heavy which is mudding up the mix? Bring down the bass frequency in your polysynth instrument to make room for the bass instrument.

Panning - if you have two instruments in similar frequency ranges, you can pan them both slightly to each side, which can help balance out the soundscape.

Mixing Levels - just changing the levels of certain instruments can help. If everything is at the same level, they all fight for the same "attention" in the mix.

Hope this was helpful in some way. Not sure I mentioned everything but hope this gives you an idea.

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EQ is your best friend when it comes to getting rid of muddiness, which basically signifies that there isn't enough space between particular sounds so that listeners can distinguish them from each other.

Panning can help as well, but not as much in cases of lower frequencies.

For example, say you have both a hard-hitting bass and a prominent kick drum. If they both occupy the same space in the lower end of the frequency range, you won't be able to tell which one is producing the oomph at any given times, which can create mud. Panning isn't as helpful here because bass is much more omni-directional than the higher frequencies are. One way to fix this would be to adjust the low frequency boost of one of them up 20-30Hz, thus giving them slightly different sound signatures.

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Thanks for the help, I think I understand what I need to do now. with this anyway.

I didn't get the chance to read this before i worked on it today, but here's the remix I'm working on that has muddiness.


I worked on it today and made THAT down there

img.php?fid=1103 this one I TRIED to make less muddy, but I'm not sure i improved it much :/

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