Thursday, May 28, 2009

Blend, Separation and Clarity: Pan

(Please see this post for the introduction to this series)

One of the most basic ways to either lay sound elements together or separate them is through the use of pan. Yes, I know, it's not exactly rocket science, but there's no reason to overlook a useful approach just because of simplicity.

If you're trying to stick elements together, put them in the same position in the pan spread. This is actually considerably more effective if you can place the elements somewhere OTHER than the center. This is simply because typical production approaches generally center up the most prominent elements such as kick, snare, bass and lead vocals. If the elements you're trying to stick together are in the exact same positioning at 9 o'clock rather than straight up the center, the binding effect is stronger because the listener sub-subconsciously notices the positioning more readily because of it differing from the norm.

Somewhat more obviously, if you are trying to separate elements, place them in different pan positions. Remember that it's not just a matter of hard left and hard right; if you give each element a different pan "slot", (e.g. 8 o'clock, 10 o'clock, center, 2 o'clock, 4 o'clock), it can be very helpful to create a full sound where multiple elements each maintain their own space.

Also remember as we talk about different ways to blend or separate elements, that various techniques can be used in combination; e.g. pan and volume. Stay tuned for more mini-posts!


About This Blog

  © Blogger templates ProBlogger Template by 2008

Back to TOP