Logic mastering tricks – make your studio sound like your car

If you’re experienced at mixing or mastering, you probably know “it’s not done until you’ve heard it in your car”.

Well, with Logic’s “Match EQ” function, you can bring the car to the studio.

  1. Get a track of Pink Noise (you’re welcome) and burn it to CD.
  2. In your studio, play back the pink noise through your speakers and record it using a high-quality microphone with broad frequency range.
  3. Drag the microphone to your car (I just used a long mic cable).
  4. Play the pink noise CD in the car and record it. (I grabbed my MacBook and remote-controlled the studio computer using Screen Sharing in Leopard)
  5. Now, using Match EQ, set the “Training Track” using the recording from the car and the “Current Track” using the recording from the studio.
  6. Click “Match”. You now have an equalizer that converts from the sound you hear on your studio speakers to the sound you hear in your car.
  7. Save the setting as “Studio to Car CD”. (I did one using my iPod too).
  8. When you’re mixing or mastering, you can put “Match EQ” into the Output 1-2 channel strip, and select your saved “Studio to Car CD” setting. When you enable it, you’ll be hearing the mix as it’ll sound in your car!

Tips:

  • When recording, hold the microphone where your head would be, both in the studio and in the car.
  • Set the volume level pretty loud (look at your input meters as with any recording) for best results
  • On my system, the car produces a lot more bass than my studio speakers, so much so that I had to put a “gain” plugin into an insert slot before the Match EQ or it’d distort.