Excel spreadsheet mixers
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Old 05-11-2016, 11:15 PM   #1
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Excel spreadsheet mixers

So
Going back to the reason rack illustrated something for me.
How come all DAWs mixers look like ugly ass excel spreadsheets on top of faders.
I don't really intend to use reason for anything other than sound design but still, I wish other daws had such elegant designs. Maybe it is just less flexible? But from watching other daws in use barf!
I guess this isn't a question as much as me blabing!

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Old 06-11-2016, 12:45 AM   #2
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

Um Reason looks shit to me.

It's a DAW. It's not meant to look good. It's meant to sound good.

In terms of UI design, the only important thing a DAW should have is a comprehensive set of jet commands which making it possible to do just about everything with minimal use of a mouse...
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Old 06-11-2016, 12:59 AM   #3
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

Yeah but couldn't the stuff look like a familiar mixer, not some boxes you need to fill with a mouse!

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Old 02-06-2017, 09:50 PM   #4
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

In 2017 physical mixing desks just aren't familiar to the average bedroom producer. I've mixed on both myself but I even find that mixing ITB can be more intuitive because every signal path is linearly laid out on the same screen, rather than following cables.
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Old 03-06-2017, 12:12 AM   #5
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

So you don't like Live or Bitwig? I've never seen any other DAW that looks like that, TBH
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Old 03-06-2017, 12:22 AM   #6
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

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Originally Posted by Vault O))) View Post
So you don't like Live or Bitwig? I've never seen any other DAW that looks like that, TBH
I have live, and like it a lot but tbh, no, visually it kinda looks aweful tbh!


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Old 04-06-2017, 08:48 AM   #7
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

I started out using Logic (well, after all the cheap shitty DAWs that I've never come across again since traversing music tech sites) and really liked the look of it. The first time I saw Ableton I thought it was really dull and kind of cheap looking, I found it uninspiring so right after torrenting it I uninstalled. Two years later my music tech tutor showed me some live looping in ableton and what it can do and I was stunned, it nearly brought a tear to my eye. I'd always been part of the live music world and was for a long time repulsed by the idea of someone being sat a computer being a musician, with Live these two worlds were suddenly colliding and I fell in love. Now I've bought Live outright and use it on a daily basis.
It's that tired old book cover analogy all over again I know but, who cares what something used for audio looks like?
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Old 04-06-2017, 02:00 PM   #8
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

I think MuLab is beautiful-looking..but then I would, given I use it all the time. It has a nice balance between mixer simplicity and a kind of old-school vibe to the modular side of it. The combination of both lets you do some pretty cool things sonically.

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Old 04-06-2017, 04:23 PM   #9
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

I'm glad FL doesn't look that good. Good looking interfaces use graphics, graphics eat resources (the limited thermal headroom I have in my laptop) I want to use for music. As it is, I can only listen to drums and a simple instrument at a time, or 3-4 instruments together, before I have to render it out and hope I didn't forget to check my pad against my bass or something. (and before you say I should render instruments and then do effects on audio, it's the effects chains that eat my CPU up ). A solid quarter of the effects I do have no interface and just use default gray assets from FL studio.

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Old 04-06-2017, 07:14 PM   #10
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

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Originally Posted by White Noise View Post
I'm glad FL doesn't look that good. Good looking interfaces use graphics, graphics eat resources (the limited thermal headroom I have in my laptop) I want to use for music. As it is, I can only listen to drums and a simple instrument at a time, or 3-4 instruments together, before I have to render it out and hope I didn't forget to check my pad against my bass or something. (and before you say I should render instruments and then do effects on audio, it's the effects chains that eat my CPU up ). A solid quarter of the effects I do have no interface and just use default gray assets from FL studio.
I think it's time to upgrade your system if it's come to the stage where you're having trouble simply applying fx to a mix..seriously..you can't really even try out most modern demos under those kind of circumstances..so you can't really know how good or bad any other daw is anyway, if you are having issues with the one you have..or find your use of the same is limited.

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Old 04-06-2017, 11:12 PM   #11
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

As was said before... Reason very nicely emulates the hardware aspect of a studio. You connect cables and how often do you find looking at the cable routing? The mixer looks just like a hardware console. If I look at my A&H MixWizard, I see exactly why it looks the way it does.

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Old 04-06-2017, 11:17 PM   #12
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

I use a lot of CPU heavy stuff (think multiple instances of accustica plugins on every channel, and lots of bussing so that an average instrument is going to be on at least two of it's very own mixer channels, then sub-mixes, then the master with it's own processing as well). I've got a fast processor, the i7 6920 hq (I can run Diva on divine with a butt-load of voices by itself, 60-80% CPU usage), I just abuse it with my production style. I suppose I could render this stuff out to audio at some point, but I really don't know where in the chain to cut it off and pick it back up. I've mixed stems fine before, but that was before I picked up my bussing habit.

All that said, I am looking to build a new desktop pc towards the end of summer, though part of how I'm funding that is to share the cost with my brother and making it primarily a gaming PC. So it may or may not have a faster CPU than what I have right now, though it will certainly have more power and cooling, so performance will likely be more consistent at least.

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Old 04-06-2017, 11:26 PM   #13
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

Quote:
Originally Posted by White Noise View Post
I use a lot of CPU heavy stuff (think multiple instances of accustica plugins on every channel, and lots of bussing so that an average instrument is going to be on at least two of it's very own mixer channels, then sub-mixes, then the master with it's own processing as well). I've got a fast processor, the i7 6920 hq (I can run Diva on divine with a butt-load of voices by itself, 60-80% CPU usage), I just abuse it with my production style. I suppose I could render this stuff out to audio at some point, but I really don't know where in the chain to cut it off and pick it back up. I've mixed stems fine before, but that was before I picked up my bussing habit.

All that said, I am looking to build a new desktop pc towards the end of summer, though part of how I'm funding that is to share the cost with my brother and making it primarily a gaming PC. So it may or may not have a faster CPU than what I have right now, though it will certainly have more power and cooling, so performance will likely be more consistent at least.

I get where you're coming from, WN, but what your basically saying is you're going to splash out on an even more powerful system, when what you have is more than powerful enough to mix with..you just need to take a look at how you actually produce and streamline that instead of spending money, regardless of if money is an issue or not for you. If you did do that, then it's fair to say you'd end up with a better workflow in general, resulting in a more focused mix process.

By the way, I'm merely spit-balling here..and not saying you should or shouldn't do anything other than what you've already said you intend doing. Read the above more along the lines of "if it were me, then" kind of thing.

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Old 05-06-2017, 12:00 AM   #14
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

Quote:
Originally Posted by A.M View Post
I get where you're coming from, WN, but what your basically saying is you're going to splash out on an even more powerful system, when what you have is more than powerful enough to mix with..you just need to take a look at how you actually produce and streamline that instead of spending money, regardless of if money is an issue or not for you. If you did do that, then it's fair to say you'd end up with a better workflow in general, resulting in a more focused mix process.

By the way, I'm merely spit-balling here..and not saying you should or shouldn't do anything other than what you've already said you intend doing. Read the above more along the lines of "if it were me, then" kind of thing.

I'm working on streamlining it, it really came to a head when I was working on Airwaves for the club bangers and I could only hear one track at a time against the drums. I already have that up to two in my next song. So it is getting there. Just taking a few months making changes one at a time and seeing what works and what doesn't. Once I finish the current track I'm on, I have a lot of early stage stuff I can really work on doing a better job with workflow from the start. I have some ideas I'm looking forward to trying, because I do know something needs to change if I want to keep improving as fast as I have been over the past year or two.

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Old 05-06-2017, 03:31 AM   #15
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

I expected this thread to detail some guy who was using Excel as his DAW, then forcing the data into midi and/or wav format and making kick ass tunes better than what I can do with a bank of synths and a couple of laptops. I suppose it's only a matter of time until they do

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Old 05-06-2017, 04:13 PM   #16
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

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Originally Posted by dada_davros View Post
I expected this thread to detail some guy who was using Excel as his DAW, then forcing the data into midi and/or wav format and making kick ass tunes better than what I can do with a bank of synths and a couple of laptops. I suppose it's only a matter of time until they do
Yeah, I expected to see TheStumps (I think that's how it's spaced/capitalized and everything) in here, he's put up a few crazy excel tools for chord and chord progression design and the like.

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Old 06-06-2017, 06:26 PM   #17
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

To me it's all about functionality cause that is what's going to be making my music, as long as it works well it can be as ugly as shit to me LOL
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Old 07-06-2017, 04:42 AM   #18
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

Part of the fun is assigning colors and names, you get the whole spreadsheet experience
...which probably has nothing to do with spreadsheets, I'm illiterate
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Old 07-06-2017, 12:57 PM   #19
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Re: Excel spreadsheet mixers

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Originally Posted by Vault O))) View Post
Part of the fun is assigning colors and names, you get the whole spreadsheet experience
...which probably has nothing to do with spreadsheets, I'm illiterate
Lol!
Seriously tho, so many people try so hard to recreate the look and sound of old compressors and eqs in software, why not the mixers? Just a shitty triangle next to a line in ableton is enough for levels I guess?
I mean, yeah it works, but there's something to be said for looks too.

Ps I really had to squint to see that!

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