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Top Tools and Techniques for Mixing Drums by Audio Engineer Daniel Wyatt

Daniel Wyatt. (Image via splice.com)

A version of this article originally appeared on Splice.


Drums help to form the foundation of many songs, and if you get them sounding good in a mix, you’re on your way to a great recording. Working with a live drum kit is very different than working with drum samples when it comes to mixing. In this guest post, Daniel Wyatt shows us his go-to tricks for getting live drums to sound great. To follow along with his process, sign up for a free Splice account, and download the project below:


Before I dive into giving you some tips, I'd like to point out a significant difference between live drums and programmed drums. With better drum samplers out there, I find myself finding engineers who don't know how to handle live drums in a mix. Programmed drums are usually already EQ'd, compressed, limited, saturated, and ready to go, and to get them to relate to each other in an impactful way in a mix is no small task.

3 Mixing and Mastering Tips From Veteran Audio Engineer Daniel Wyatt

Daniel Wyatt. (Image via blog.splice.com)

A version of this article first appeared on Splice Blog.


Splice, a cloud platform for music collaboration, has really changed the way I work with clients and students alike. I created a working mix project to demonstrate a few tips and hopefully clarify a few common questions. While I do tend to use a good amount of third-party plugins in my work (iZotope, Soundtoys, UA, Fabfilter, Sonnox, Altiverb, etc.), I thought it would be cool to demonstrate some of these techniques with the indigenous Ableton Live plugins – both for compatibility and simplicity.

Here are some tips and tricks for upcoming producers and mixers that you might find helpful. I have broken them down into sub-categories for organizational purposes. To follow along, sign up for a free Splice account and download the project below: