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How to get that 'dreamy' full sound, that fills the entire sound stage, the entire panorama.


On my recent recording of 'Road Trip' I decided to try using a mixing trick that I've read about in the excellent book 'Mixing Audio' by Roey Izhaki. It's called the Haas effect.

1- Choose a mono track. Pan it to one extreme.

2- Duplicate the track. Pan it to the opposite extreme.

3- Slide the duplicated track back by 20 to 30ms. (use your ears to decide exactly where, and momentarily switch your monitors to mono, to hear the amount of phase cancellation)

4- Lower the level of the original track, until the two tracks are about equal in strength, so that neither track is dominant.

Your 'narrow' mono track has now become huge, filling the aural landscape. It's a great effect for either lead instruments or supporting background tracks. In any one section of music, I usually limit its use to one instrument in the arrangement, either a lead solo instrument OR a supporting instrument that I want to 'surround' the main focus instrument, ie lead vocal, lead guitar, etc. When you use the Haas effect, it tends to allow room in the middle of the panorama for other instruments, while at the same time it 'feels' like the entire panorama is 'filled'.

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