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The Creators Tool Box

Veteran mastering engineer Chris Athens offers some do’s and don’ts when preparing your mixes for that final stage before release.

Mixing engineers can make your song pop out of the speakers and sound clear and polished, perfectly complementing the recorded elements of your song. But what exactly is mixing, and what should you look for when choosing a mixing engineer? Here’s a primer that will get you on the right track in no time.

One of the most critical areas of any mix is in the low end - the frequency area around 200Hz and below. Managing those frequencies isn’t just important for your basses, low brass, kick drums, synths and other keyboards. “Hidden” low-frequency energy can play a role in your overall mix, too.

You've captured the perfect take. But when it comes time to mix, you notice that something isn’t quite right. Maybe it’s some hiss, pickup hum, or a ’plosion on the vocal track. When timeline editing or EQ don’t work, call the plug-in equivalent of sonic mechanics: audio repair software. Here's how.

Once derided as “canned music,” production libraries are becoming a more respected—and lucrative—way to get your music placed in film, TV and other media. Killer Tracks executive producer Ryan Perez-Daple explains how.

We've all been there: The looming deadline when your ideas aren’t flowing…the song you abandon because it sounds too much like everything else you’ve written lately. Here's how pads, plugs-in and more can help you solve creative obstacles.

If you have a DAW and even a handful of software instruments at your disposal, you’ve probably got more available sounds, loops, and other readymade content than you’d be able to use in a lifetime of projects. It seems like every instrument comes with hundreds— if not thousands—of presets.

We found some fantastic new gear for songwriters and producers!

Nick Gallant explains how he and his team adapt their experience in the gaming music world to create music for mobile apps.

Editor/producer Matt O'Connor chooses music for top television shows from a wide range of sources. He explains what composers need to deliver to get on the air.