And so, fairly pleased with my finished track, I burned it to CD and took it up the Hotel so that Gaz could give it an airing. Unfortunately, what I didn't know is that Gaz's CD player only plays mono and this is how the track sounds in mono:
At first it sounds fairly similar until the first synth line comes in and you're thinking 'hmmm, that sounds a little low' and then when the vocals come in at a pathetically low volume compared to the bass and drums then you know something ain't quite right. And it's all to do with the mono system. The track above is simply the mono version of the original but when converting the track from stereo to mono, the synths and vocals have effects on them (reverb, flanger, chorus etc) which were done in stereo and 'mono-ising' them leads to phase-cancellation (or anti-phase). I knew about it this and I always make sure my bass and drums are mono but I never realised what such an effect it would have on a mono-played stereo track. I guess from now on I'll be checking my track in both stereo and mono to make sure it sounds ok in both, although having had a go on the youtube version I put up (YouTube is also mono!!!), it's not an easy task to get it good in both :(
Here's a more in-depth analysis of what's going from a forum post over at Dogs On Acid:
So, lesson learned: Always make sure that your track sounds just as good in mono as it does in stereo before playing it out somewhere!!
until next time :)