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Mixing Master Class

Lesson 5 of 13

Master Bus Effects

Kenneth Gioia

Mixing Master Class

Kenneth Gioia

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Lesson Info

5. Master Bus Effects

Lesson Info

Master Bus Effects

before I get to the lead vocal, I want a just mix bus compressor. In fact, I could turn the vocals off for this part because they don't have as much energy as the drums and bass do. So it's got Mixer turn off are we vocals and backup vocals and let's go to a stereo bus. Let me go to, uh, section of the Jones Come in, which would be our intro and let's go to our view and choose master track. And right over here is our master track or amassed a bus, forget to deep into a mix or even start the mix. I like to adjust that and a compressor or actually a few compressors to this. Let me show you what those are now. I'm doing this in Reaper with the plug. Is that come with Reaper? But really, this could be applied to any DW using. You can use any compressors or multi band compressors or limiters as you'll see, which is what I'm gonna stop by adding, So go this track here, which is our master bus, which is everything is being flowed into this one track. So, of course, if I mute it. We don't hear...

anything. It's all coming from here. So everything going here, we can put a master bus effect or two bus effect on here, and I saw what the Reaper compressor and I play it. I can start adding compression to it now. This is way too much, obviously, but I just want to shorts working now. The reason I put this on very early or I should say at the beginning, is if you put this on at the end, it's really it's nice that it contains your mix. It makes it sound a little more radio friendly. It's, ah, it'll be louder. But the problem If you wait to the end to do it, it's gonna change all your balances. Years ago, I I've talked to people about this and they put it on at the end, and it's like if you do that, you're mixed, completely gets destroyed, you have to then go back to every track and readjust it, and to me, it just doesn't work. It makes much more sense to mixed into your compressor or mix into your two bus effects on the way in, and then maybe adjust them along the way. But don't don't wait to the end to put them off at least again. That's just my opinion. All right, so we go to ratio would start around 3.3. Should be about three or four db three or 4 to 1 ratio and weaken just our attack to be a little not so fast on a release weaken just along the way. And I'm gonna try the automaker game. But I may not leave it on which adjust your makeup gain automatically based on how much you reduce it. You could see right up here overloading. But over here you could see how much it's actually game reducing, you know, automatically or very quickly starts to sound a little more finished out again. We have a mix of some at all, but or already sounds a little better or a little more finished sounding thing before, but the drums air hitting a little too hard. But we'll adjust that as we actually make our mix. Now, right after this on for a multi bank compressor, multi bank oppressors. It's something I really like to use on. This is because it controls different frequencies separately. So you compress the low end in the mid range and high end completely separate. So these were hearing the pumping and breathing that you're hearing with. This is what I call pumping and breathing, but it's a bit more subtle, but still provides a nice effect. Where it contains the top end a little bit contains the low end and obviously the mid range as well. But by containing all those separately, it really gets much more finished. Sound as you're here, But again, we're going to start off a little light. But we want to add this after our main compressor. So come cook here, go to the Main Reaper plug ins and choose one called Reaper ex cop, which is a multi bank oppressor. And it starts off with four different bands. I'm gonna delete three of them. The reason for that I'm gonna bring this out So I'm doing full range is if we get our settings here and then we hit Add band, it's going to it. It's gonna duplicate those settings. I don't want to seem settings each. So again we'll start around two or 3 to 1 ratio. Let's just hear this. Sounds like we'll start around four I want to do is right now it's the full frequency from here to here. Now we're gonna add some or bands. Make sure happy with where this starts pretty good. So add two more bands. You'll see each band has the same ratio, and threshold just makes it easier not to have to adjust them separately and then also keeps the frequencies in line with each other. If you start messing with these two separately from each other, your high ends gonna be in a completely weird place. I don't want to create some kind of weird que With this, I just want to compress each channel equally, or each band equally. So now we could just go over here and pull this out, and that's gonna change the frequency for each one. It's now 1/3 band starts at around. See where this one's up. This is about seven Killer. It was too high around 45 Should work later on. Actually, right now, I could do it too. We could solo each band to see what hearing. So it's just so certain current band now only gonna hear high end. So right now we're just compressing the super high end around five kilohertz right now. So five kilohertz and above is being compressed by this. So I can go to the mid range one by just clicking it. Let me quick it you go. And I was just gonna hear that band with low end and we'll just hear that band. Come on, let me click it. Here we go. And about 300 hertz here. So from I guess, 20 hertz to about 300 rates, we just double check on that. About 300 hertz is being compressed separately from our mid range. And the high end, which is from you could see it better from here from about five kilohertz up is being compressed over here. Everything in between is being compressed here. Now it's here. What that sounds like by unsold wing, the current band. It's not very dramatic yet just to show you the difference. What's changed? The threshold. Tu minus eight on each one of them. I really like to ah make the most seem Let's go a little further. Let's go minus 15. She could really hear it not plus 50. This is almost considered like a mastering stage, but I kinda like to do this early so I can kind of hear it. It was like pre mastering, but, um, I see no reason not to be involved in that stage there as well. This is before this is after you could hear the frequencies a little more contained. But I'm gonna make this a lot more subtle for now. We always adjust it. Add to the mix is more perfected. So it's just to minus five. We could adjust this along the way, would like to have it was on in the beginning, so it's not as dramatic when I decided to use more of it. If you want to hear both of these sound like together bypassed, you can hit this little button right here to bypass the plug ins. That's before that's after you could see again. It's starting to already come together, and we haven't even mixed anything. We haven't touched the individual tracks to try to make them sound better, so I could get, you know, a little more to a finish mix earlier. So it kind of Sykes me up to get there because of the mix is just gonna explode after that. So just one more thing. I want to throw it at the end, so it doesn't, uh, over. Ah, start clipping, as you see, is a little bit of a limiter. So we'll go back to this and at the end of the chain, gonna type in or plug ins, type in limiter in our filter and we go, This one here there's a master limiter. This doesn't do anything other than contain the Doolittle brick wall limiting to contain the peaks. So I start with nothing, and I will bring it down to see what it does. And again, this is something that's usually added on the mastering. In fact, I'll usually turn this off, but the track is going to be mastered. But you want to hear what it's gonna sound like. So I'll put a little bit on here as a mixing. And then if I send it off to the mastering engineer, I'll pull it back off way too much. So it's gonna be a little bit try different limiter. Not crazy about that one. Let's try the apple one. I am not crazy with that, either. Let's go back to the other one. Uh, see other 11 more time. I'm not crazy about these right now. You know, I'm gonna leave us off for now. A lot of times, I'll put this on towards the end anyway, just to hear her again with the mastering engineers going here for now. Just gonna leave this off and I'll revisit it a little bit.

Class Description

Kenny Gioia is a multi-platinum engineer and producer behind pop and rock records from the likes of Bayside, American Authors, Ingrid Michaelson, and Mandy Moore. He is also a trusted educator and founder of

In this mixing masterclass, Kenny will walk you through his specific mixing techniques getting top-40 friendly mixes entirely inside the box in Reaper. He will cover:

  • EQ, compression and dynamics
  • Reverb, delay and time-based effects
  • Vocal automation and vocal tone
  • Drum, guitar and bass mixing techniques
  • Mix-buss and pre-mastering tricks
If you’ve been looking for a way to get that big studio sound from your bedroom DAW setup, Kenny will show you how to get your mixes sounding like they’re radio-ready.

Ratings and Reviews

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this is really great mixing course, kenny has a great workflow and i learned quite a lot and it was easy to undestand, and i dont even use reaper, what you learn in this course applys to all daw and tools, which is great

Evan Phillips | Alaska

Kenny's Mixing Master Class blew my mind. His workflow and level of organization during mixing is a real eye opener. I'm also a longtime Reaper user so this is an excellent all around resource for me. I feel like I just stepped up my game. Thanks Kenny!

Geneo Van Engers

so far this has been a great training class for brushing up on the basics it would have been nice if you would of went over gain staging more and how you got the static mix level wise when faders are at zero its a little deceptive. I did appreciate the minimal set up you use though.