Monthly Archives: October 2009

Triangulation 5.1 mix postmortem

Triangulation is a song that was written a few years back for a random-topic songwriting contest. It was produced in FL Studio, which unfortunately does not have a surround mixer.

I exported all of the mixer channels to their own tracks so that I could import them into Audition. Keeping everything at unity gain, this gave me the stereo mix which I could then mess around with in Audition’s surround panner/encoder module.

The channels are shown relative to a circle with the listener at the center. The white dot shows where the sound source is to be placed, and the blue-shaded area gives you an idea of the coverage area and what’s coming out of the speakers. Audition does not have any way to record mixer automation, so from here on it was a matter of using the mouse to give the individual tracks room in the 5.1 mix. I was able to draw in some automation curves with the pencil tool, so one is able to give these elements some motion. I had originally low-passed the master-track to give me something for the LFE channel, but it turns out that there is a slider to control how much signal goes to that channel.

Here’s the finished product. Higher fidelity version.

The Audition surround panner can do nearly everything I’d like, but is a pain to use in that you need to have all your tracks (including effects sends) printed and ready to mix. I have quite a few MIDI devices with joysticks and X/Y pads, but I don’t seem to be able to use them with this DAW.