Solving Masking

Hi, I would love to know when carving out space for a vocal, a vocal can take up the entire frequency spectrum, what part of the vocal are we actually attempting to unmask?

How do you know when mixing whether you need to boost the frequencies in the vocal to make it sit, or cut it out from the instrumental parts?


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Hi Callum,
‘carving out space’ is arrangement ,bar and moment specific. Typically, I’ll automate eq on the vocal and often times, the instruments beneath it in a particular section or phrase of lyric. The the beauty of the almost infinite amount of automation you can do very quickly, these days. But specifically, the vocals is usually in competition with the keys/bass/guitars first, so knowing those instruments’ ‘dominant frequencies’, the vocal may need to be sculpted around those. Or, of course they may need to change their frequency content to accommodate the vocals at full richness.

I will always start my eq’ing by boosting what I feel is ‘out of balance’ (never in solo, only while either the full song or at the very least the Drums, Bass and dominant harmonic instrument, are playing). That way I can quickly choose the frequency and decrease by some amount that makes the necessary change in the balance against the vocal or other instruments.

Tough questions and complex answer. I hope I was able to help a little.


Thanks Tony, really helpful!

Hi @Tony_Maserati, what are your thoughts on the Wavesfactory pluggin, trackspacer?