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what goes left, what goes right?


Ok, I'm not a pro doing this. I've come to the point where I have all my midi and audio tracks finished, and now I'm about to mix all the tracks into a final stereo track.
However, I dunno exactly where to put each instrument, that is in which channel, left or right I should put my bass, guitar, strings, winds, etc. in order to achieve a good stereo balance?
PS. I am using cakewalk/sonar but this is irrelevant I guess.
January 1, 2002 @10:35pm

It is really up to you --you are creating the music--but there are many photos on the net that allow you to follow the standards of say a>>>>> orchestra stage---clearly showing the placements of strings --brass--woods--etc.
January 1, 2002 @11:35pm

Thanks for your reply,
Yes it's true it's up to me, but I've been told to avoid unbalances, and I'm not quite sure how to prevent that. For instance I have heard that a bass should be centered almost always, and that I should never put a strong sound 100% on the left or 100% on the right.
I need to know for instance, if I want to create the illusion of having an instrument at 45 degrees on my left hand side, does that mean I have to set the pan for that track at 50% on the left?
In other words, what is the relationship between the angle where the instrument in the track is virtually placed and the pan percentage you assign to that track while mixing? Do I have to play with the phase as well?
Does someone know the answer?
January 6, 2002 @08:23am

That's a good question> I'm a newbie myself, but I was told to pan all vocals Hard right and Hard left. You Might want to try it. I wish more people would respond.
January 13, 2002 @02:46am

Lou--ever instrument/vocal needs to find a place in the mix--so there are no real rules---but generally bass and kick center-->>-on my accoustic instruments I generally pan hard left/right dry (seperate mics) and then add effects to the opposite of each dry channel--there by creating and very stereo sound...lead vocal is nearly centered with harmonies maybe at 9 o'clock and 2---that is just a starting point,,,,,,eq can move things around ---lots of variables
January 13, 2002 @06:55am

Like others have said...it truly is up to you. When I have the opportunity to either mic or direct line something in stereo, I do it. 99% of the stuff I do is for TV, so I also have to be aware of the "image" I create in audio as it relates to what the visually is happening. Given a typical set-up, I do the following:
K- Center
S- Center
Toms- panning never over 70% one way
Over Heads- always panned hard left right.
20 to 30% panned if both are playing similar lines. Typically
never pan lead.
Lead Voc;
Backing voc;
sometimes, depends how I feel!
Keys- Always!
Aux. Perc.- Always (if possible) with overheads and tight mic where
I need it.
These are just the basics for me and of course, nothing is in stone. I do tend to use Plate Reverb on things like drums, sometimes keys/vocs or a mixture of hall, plates, delays, etc that are in stereo (so there is more of an "image" of width. Others can maybe throw in their 2 cents. Hope this helps a little. Have fun and experiment!
February 4, 2002 @04:18pm