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Craig MacDonald

Bouncing sub mixes to a master

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hi dudes and dudesses 

would like to hear your thoughts on bouncing sub mixes to a master track

How do you actually do it ?

Do you select all  then bounce to master mix?

Do you  select all the tracks then bounce to master mix?

Im not really sure any links or advice would be great.

 

kind regards

 

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i have several "stem" busses which all feed a master buss. i only export by selecting only the master buss when i want the single combined output, or i can export all of the stem busses (low, vocals, instruments, solos, drums) in a single go by simply selecting those busses.

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If you use sidechaining, it pays to have a plan before you start bouncing (or even better, a template), or else the results can be unexpected. Personally, I use an aux track for every group I want to sub-mix, but only use sidechaining to buses from the aux tracks,  so I when I want to bounce my submixes, I can arm all the aux tracks I want bounced, and hit record, knowing that I don't have to pay attention to sidechain interactions - they will not effect the bounce, and will stay intact after the bounce.

My approach of course has the disadvantage that it is slower than bouncing, but it is 100% reliable and predictable, and the results stay in the project, routed the same way as they were,  and I don't have to re-import any WAV files. Also a good idea to keep the aux track in a folder with the tracks that feed it, so you can easily mute or delete the original tracks after a bounce - else you get the same signal doubled up. 

You could get the same end result with buses instead of aux tracks. The important thing is to have a set of buses with no sidechain interactions as your first layer in the signal flow - so you might have buses called "Guitar In" that only feed "Guitar Out", and the same for all your submixes. If you want to duck guitars under vocals, create a send between "Guitar In" and a compressor on "Vox Out". So you can bounce the "ins" and then send the resulting mix to the "outs".

Of course you may want to create stems which capture the sidechain interactions, so then you bounce from outs rather than the ins. The important thing is to have your own system that is easy to follow. 

Obvs this is a pain to set up, so do it in a template! As I say, I prefer using aux tracks for my "In's" and buses for my "out's", but YMMV.

This approach is also helpful if you collaborate with people that use something other than cakewalk -  but that's a much longer story...

 

btw I set my default bus to be silent, so that I never forget (or get too lazy) to route new tracks or buses to the right place. 

Edited by grannis

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I’m lazy. I just export my mix. Open the browser and drag and drop onto track pane. I leave the count in  so I can line it up with the multi track 

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