8 Ways To Level Up Your Mix in 2024

As we navigate through 2024, the landscape of music production continues to evolve, offering new challenges and opportunities for audio engineers and producers alike.

This blog post dives deep into eight critical areas of mixing—ranging from tackling frequency masking with innovative tools to enhancing stereo width, optimizing loudness without compromising dynamics, and more.

If your goal is to not just keep pace but set the trends in the music production industry, this guide is tailored for you. Discover the latest techniques and tools that can transform your mix from basic to brilliant, ensuring your tracks are not just heard but felt.

1: Understanding & Addressing Frequency Masking

Have you ever noticed how certain elements in your mix seem to disappear or become muffled when played alongside others? This phenomenon is known as frequency masking, a common issue where similar frequencies from different instruments or sounds compete for attention, leading to a loss of clarity and definition.

To effectively combat frequency masking, it's crucial to:

  • Identify overlapping frequencies between conflicting elements.
  • Apply strategic EQ cuts to carve out space for each element.
  • Use sidechain compression to dynamically duck competing elements.

However, achieving this manually can be both time-consuming and technically challenging, especially for complex mixes. That's where FUSER from Mastering The Mix comes into play.

FUSER plugin

Introducing FUSER

FUSER is designed to intelligently detect and automatically resolve frequency conflicts between multiple elements in your mix. Its smart conflict detection and resolution feature offers a revolutionary way to enhance mix clarity and depth. Here’s how FUSER addresses frequency masking:

  • Conflict Detection: Automatically identifies overlapping frequencies between two audio sources.
  • Resolve Conflicts: Initiates processing that transparently resolves frequency masking, allowing each element to be heard clearly.
  • Visual Clarity: Offers an intuitive display that highlights conflicting frequencies, making it easier to understand and adjust your mix.

By leveraging FUSER, you can effortlessly elevate the clarity of your mixes without sacrificing the character of your sound. It saves you time and delivers professional results, making it an indispensable tool for music producers aiming to level up their mix.

Explore the features of FUSER and see how it can transform your mixes.

2: Utilizing Reference Tracks Effectively

The use of reference tracks is a tried and true technique for achieving professional-sounding mixes. These tracks serve as sonic benchmarks that help guide the mixing process, ensuring your music competes with commercial releases in terms of quality and loudness.

Effective application of reference tracks involves:

  • Selection: Choose reference tracks that closely align with your song's genre, style, and intended sound.
  • Level Matching: Ensure your mix and the reference track play back at the same perceived volume for a fair comparison.
  • Frequency Analysis: Use the reference to identify any frequency imbalances in your mix and make necessary adjustments.

While referencing can be performed using standard media players and manual level matching, REFERENCE by Mastering The Mix greatly simplifies and enhances this process through its intuitive and feature-rich approach.

REFERENCE | Mixing and mastering utility plugin

Mastering Comparison with REFERENCE

REFERENCE is specifically designed to streamline the referencing process, offering invaluable insights and tools that facilitate accurate mix comparisons. Here’s how REFERENCE can optimize your referencing workflow:

  • Level Match Feature: Instantly matches the loudness of your mix to your reference tracks, ensuring unbiased comparisons.
  • Trinity Display: Visualizes the EQ spectrum, stereo width, and compression of your mix versus reference tracks, highlighting discrepancies and guiding your adjustments.
  • Waveform Comparison: Offers a visual representation of the dynamic range between your track and the reference, aiding in achieving a competitive loudness without crushing dynamics.

By incorporating REFERENCE into your mixing and mastering workflow, you not only ensure your tracks measure up to industry standards but also expedite the process of identifying and correcting mix issues. It's an invaluable tool for music producers seeking to elevate their mixes to a professional standard.

Embrace the power of professional referencing with REFERENCE

3: Eliminating Resonances for Cleaner Mixes

Undesirable resonances in a mix can result from a variety of sources, whether it's a particular instrument recording, room acoustics during tracking, or simply the accumulation of similar frequencies from multiple elements. These resonances can cause your mix to sound harsh, muddy, or unfocused.

To address and eliminate resonances effectively, consider the following steps:

  • Identification: Pinpoint the frequencies causing unpleasant resonances by sweeping through the frequency spectrum with a narrow EQ boost.
  • Targeted Reduction: Apply narrow EQ cuts at the identified troublesome frequencies to reduce resonances without negatively affecting the overall sound.
  • Dynamic EQ: Employ dynamic EQ adjustments that only activate when resonances peak, preserving the natural character of the audio.

Manual resonance reduction can be time-consuming and, at times, imprecise. This is where RESO from Mastering The Mix offers an innovative and efficient solution.

RESO | Dynamic Resonance Suppressor

Streamlining Resonance Reduction with RESO

RESO is tailor-made to dynamically identify and reduce resonances in your mixes, offering precision and ease that manual methods can't match. Here’s how RESO enhances your mixing process:

  • Smart Resonance Detection: RESO automatically identifies the most problematic resonances within your audio, allowing for quick and targeted adjustments.
  • Transparent Processing: Thanks to its advanced algorithm, RESO reduces resonances transparently, ensuring your audio remains clear and natural.
  • Customizable Target Reduction: Provides the flexibility to adjust the amount of reduction applied to each resonance, giving you full control over the process.

By integrating RESO into your mixing arsenal, you can significantly improve the clarity and quality of your mixes by eliminating troublesome resonances efficiently. Whether you’re mixing dense arrangements or sparse compositions, RESO delivers the clean, focused sound you’re aiming for.

Take the first step towards resonance-free mixes with RESOGet your free trial here and to begin your journey towards cleaner, more polished productions.

4: Achieving Optimal Loudness Without Compromising Dynamics

The quest for loudness in music production is a double-edged sword. On one hand, achieving a certain level of loudness is necessary for your tracks to stand out and match the competitive levels of commercial releases. On the other hand, pushing the loudness too far can lead to a loss of dynamics, resulting in a flat and lifeless sound.

To strike the perfect balance between loudness and dynamics, consider the following best practices:

  • Evaluate the dynamic range of your track to ensure it retains its expressive qualities.
  • Use transparent limiting to achieve loudness without adversely affecting the mix’s dynamics.
  • Consider the loudness standards of streaming platforms to optimize your music for digital consumption.

Manually achieving this balance can be challenging, but with the right tool, you can simplify this process and ensure your tracks meet modern loudness standards without losing their punch. This is where LIMITER from Mastering The Mix comes into the picture.

Limiter plugin

Optimizing Loudness with LIMITER

LIMITER is a smart mastering plugin that not only helps you achieve the desired loudness for your tracks but does so with an emphasis on retaining the music's dynamic range. Discover how LIMITER offers a solution to the loudness dilemma:

  • Smart Analysis: Auto-suggests the best settings for loudness, attack, and release based on your audio, ensuring optimal dynamics.
  • Clean and Loud: Uses a unique limiting algorithm that allows you to push loudness while reducing distortion and maintaining punch.
  • Intuitive Controls: Offers visual feedback and easy-to-adjust parameters, making it user-friendly for producers at any skill level.

With LIMITER, mastering a track to meet the loudness standards of today's music industry no longer means sacrificing the dynamic expression of your music. Whether you are aiming for a super-loud master or carefully adjusting your audio for streaming platforms, LIMITER ensures your music retains its vibrancy and impact.

Explore the capabilities of LIMITER and see how it can elevate the final touch of your productions.

5: Low-End Clarity & Punch

The low-end frequencies are the backbone of many genres, providing warmth, power, and movement. Yet, achieving a tight, clear, and punchy low-end often remains one of the most challenging aspects of mixing. Too much low-end can overpower a mix, whereas too little can make it sound thin and lifeless.

To ensure your mix's low-end strikes the perfect balance, keep these guidelines in mind:

  • Use high-pass filters selectively to clean up unnecessary low frequencies from non-bass elements.
  • Focus on EQ and compression settings that enhance the punchiness and clarity of your bass and kick drums.
  • Ensure there's a clear distinction between the bass and kick, either by frequency separation or side-chain compression.

While achieving well-balanced low frequencies traditionally requires a great deal of manual tweaking and ear training, BASSROOM by Mastering The Mix provides a streamlined solution.

BASSROOM | Final Mix and Mastering EQ

Balancing Low Frequencies with BASSROOM

BASSROOM is a final mix and mastering EQ specifically designed to help you nail your low-end. It delivers transparent corrections based on the tonal balance of your mix, resulting in a solid foundation without muddiness or overpowering bass. Here’s how BASSROOM can level up your low-end:

  • Genre-specific Presets: Offers tailored EQ settings based on your music's genre, serving as a solid starting point for your low-end adjustments.
  • 3D Interface: A visually intuitive EQ workspace allows for precise adjustments with real-time feedback, making EQing your low-end both straightforward and effective.
  • Transparent Application: Unlike traditional EQs, BASSROOM uses unique filters optimized for low frequencies to ensure your adjustments enhance clarity and punch without introducing unwanted artifacts.

Whether you're mastering a track or trying to fix a troublesome mix, BASSROOM provides the clarity and punch your low-end needs to stand out. By offering both broad corrective moves and nuanced tweaks, it ensures your bass and kicks work harmoniously, elevating your mix to professional standards.

Unlock the full potential of your low-end with BASSROOM.

6: Vocal Clarity and Presence

Vocals are often the centerpiece of a song, carrying the melody and emotional weight of the music. Ensuring vocals cut through the mix without sounding disconnected or overly dominant is a delicate balancing act. Achieving vocal clarity and presence requires precision in equalization, level balancing, and sometimes dynamic processing.

To enhance the clarity and presence of your vocals in the mix, consider the following strategies:

  • Employ EQ cuts in competing elements to create space for vocals in the frequency spectrum.
  • Utilize compression judiciously to even out vocal dynamics, making them consistently present throughout the track.
  • Add slight saturation or excitement to bring forward the harmonic content of the vocals, making them cut through the mix.

While manual adjustments using standard tools can yield good results, Mastering The Mix offers a specialized solution with MIXROOM, designed to streamline and enhance the process of achieving vocal clarity and presence.

MIXROOM | Intelligent and Versatile EQ Plugin

Refining Vocals with MIXROOM

MIXROOM is an intelligent EQ that provides targeted suggestions for EQ adjustments, based on the unique content of your track. When applied to vocals, MIXROOM can effectively elevate vocal clarity and presence by focusing on these key areas:

  • Intelligent EQ Suggestions: MIXROOM analyzes your vocal track and suggests EQ adjustments to optimize clarity and presence within the context of your overall mix.
  • Precise Control: Offers precise frequency, gain, and Q factor adjustments, enabling you to sculpt your vocals with pinpoint accuracy.
  • Visual Feedback: Provides a unique 3D interface for an intuitive EQ experience, offering real-time visual feedback on how your adjustments impact the vocal sound.

By harnessing the power of MIXROOM, you can ensure your vocals are heard clearly and powerfully, sitting perfectly within the mix without the need for excessive tweaking or guesswork. Whether you're mixing lead vocals, backing harmonies, or spoken word, MIXROOM delivers the finesse and clarity your tracks deserve.

Explore the capabilities of MIXROOM and give your vocals the standout presence they need.

7: Tackling Phase Issues for a Tighter Mix

Phase issues can stealthily undermine the energy and tightness of a mix, causing elements to sound weak or disjointed when played together. Correctly identifying and addressing phase problems not only tightens the overall sound but also ensures that mixes translate well across different playback systems.

To effectively manage phase issues in your mix:

  • Visual Inspection: Use phase correlation meters to visually identify phase inconsistencies between tracks.
  • Listening: Monitor in mono to easily perceive phase cancellations that may not be apparent in a stereo mix.
  • Adjustments: Employ phase inversion switches or fine time alignment to correct phase issues between elements sharing similar frequency content.

While manual adjustments are viable, they can be labor-intensive and require a fine-tuned ear. FUSER by Mastering The Mix presents a more accessible and efficient solution for correcting phase problems, ensuring your mix retains its intended punch and clarity.

FUSER plugin for phase issues

Correcting Phase Issues Effortlessly with FUSER

Designed to minimize the tedious aspects of phase correction, FUSER enables you to effortlessly align phase relationships between elements in your mix. Here’s how FUSER revolutionizes phase management:

  • Intelligent Phase Correction: FUSER analyzes the phase relationships in real-time and automatically applies the necessary phase adjustments to align elements coherently.
  • Conflict Detection: FUSER’s innovative conflict detection system highlights phase issues, allowing for targeted phase correction where it matters most.
  • User-Friendly Interface: FUSER provides intuitive controls and visual feedback, making it simpler than ever to resolve phase issues and enhance the cohesiveness of your mix.

By incorporating FUSER into your mixing toolkit, you ensure your music impacts listeners as intended, with tight, focused, and powerful sound. FUSER empowers you to effortlessly overcome one of mixing's more subtle challenges, freeing you to focus on the creative aspects of your production.

Phase analysis in FUSER

8: Harnessing Stereo Width for Depth

Stereo width holds the key to transforming a flat, lifeless mix into a dynamic, immersive soundscape. A well-crafted stereo image not only adds a sense of depth and space to your mix but also allows each element to breathe, ensuring a captivating listening experience.

To master the art of stereo imaging, you should:

  • Analyze and adjust the panning of each track to create a balanced, wide mix.
  • Use stereo widening tools judiciously to avoid phase issues and maintain mono compatibility.
  • Employ mid/side processing to enhance the stereo field while retaining focus on the center elements.

Implementing these techniques manually can be challenging, especially when striving for a subtle yet profound impact. This is where ANIMATE by Mastering The Mix shines.

ANIMATE plugin

Expanding Your Mix with ANIMATE

ANIMATE is designed to bring your mix to life with its Grow mode - an innovative tool that enhances the stereo width of your audio in a dynamic and musical way. Discover how this plugin can revolutionize your stereo imaging:

  • Dynamic Processing: Grow mode intelligently widens the stereo image based on the intensity of the signal, preserving the natural dynamics of your mix.
  • Mid/Side Functionality: Offers precise control over the width of mid and side frequencies, enabling a balanced, expansive stereo field without compromising the mix's core elements.
  • Visual Feedback: Provides a clear, intuitive interface that shows the real-time impact of widening adjustments, ensuring user-friendly operation.

Using ANIMATE to manipulate stereo width not only adds dimension to your mix but also ensures it remains impactful across various playback systems. Whether you're mixing dense arrangements or minimalist compositions, ANIMATE brings a level of sophistication and depth that sets your music apart.

For a deep dive into ANIMATE, including its groundbreaking Grow mode, click here and unlock the secrets to creating immersive, wide mixes.


The journey of music production is an ongoing quest for perfection, where the difference between a good mix and a great one can be subtle yet impactful.

Treat this blog post your comprehensive guide to navigating these nuances, offering actionable insights and introducing revolutionary tools that can dramatically improve the quality of your music.

By applying these eight advanced techniques, from leveraging the dynamic power of FUSER to mastering the punch of BASSROOM, you equip yourself to produce mixes that not only meet the industry's evolving standards but also captivate your audience with unparalleled clarity and depth.

As we forge ahead in 2024, let this be the year you redefine excellence in your productions, making every mix a testament to your skill and creativity.