Ravensbourne University London
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Introduction to Music Production & Mixing Audio In Logic Pro X

Using Logic Pro X you will learn how to edit, mix, and master multitrack audio recordings to create a professional-sounding end-product.

No previous experience with Logic Pro X is necessary, but it will be an advantage if participants are familiar with using Apple Macs, and can open and save files, create folders, navigate the hard disk, and use basic functions such as copy and paste.

Topics covered in Music Production

  • Rhythm – tempo, time signatures, note subdivisions, the typical rhythms of different musical styles, and drum programming using Logic’s Ultrabeat drum machine
  • Melody And Harmony – major and minor scales, key signatures, chord progressions
  • Synthesis – subtractive synthesis using Logic’s ES1 and Retro Synth software instruments
  • Sampling – how to build sample patches using Logic’s EXS24 sampler
  • MIDI Sequencing – how to sequence MIDI in the Piano Roll editor, quantise notes and edit note velocity, how to change grid settings, using the Brush Tool, and how to arrange your song in Logic’s Tracks Area
  • Audio Editing – how to edit audio using the Scissors tool, Marquee tool, and the Audio Track Editor; creating fade-ins and fade-outs that alter volume or speed; how to convert audio regions into sample patches
  • Mixing – how to send to effects using buses, how to automate your mix and bounce your song to disk.

Topics covered in Mixing Audio 

  • Session management – importing audio tracks, adding arrangement markers, organising and colour-coding regions and tracks, Beat Mapping
  • Mixing – balancing levels, panning, pre/post fade metering, using EQ, dynamics processing (compressors, noise gates), effects processing (reverb, delay etc.)
  • Routing – sending audio through buses, using Track Stacks, automation, track edit/mix grouping
  • Editing – Quick Comping, Flex Time, Flex Pitch, drum reinforcement and replacement
  • Bouncing your mix to disk and performing basic mastering using Logic X's plug-ins
  • Efficient usage of Logic Pro X – keystrokes, tips and tricks, managing windows, buffer size

Learning outcomes for Music Production

  • Create drum patterns using Ultrabeat’s step sequencer and develop these in the Piano Roll editor
  • Create your own synth sounds and go beyond using library presets
  • Map samples to key ranges in the EXS24 sampler
  • Compose music in a particular key; create basslines, melodies, and chord progressions
  • Use Logic’s Arpeggiator and Chord Trigger MIDI effects
  • Create an arrangement of your song that will engage the listener
  • Set track levels to avoid clipping the master fader, and organise the mixer correctly
  • Use equalisation (EQ), compression, reverb, and delay to enhance the sound of your track
  • Use automation to create a dynamic mix of your track

Learning outcomes for Mixing Audio

At the end of the course you will know how to:

  • Import audio from any other DAW into Logic Pro X
  • Create a tempo map from a live performance 
  • Correct timing and pitch mistakes
  • Compile the best sections of multiple takes into a 'master' take
  • Use equalisation to bring clarity and separation to the instruments in your mix
  • Use compression to improve the consistency of instrument levels in your mix, and noise gates to remove unwanted background noise 
  • Apply reverb to blend instruments, create depth, or create sustain 
  • Use other effects such as delay, chorus, phaser, flanger, distortion, filtering
  • Use audio subgroups to easily manage multiple audio tracks 
  • Create a dynamic, lively mix using automation
  • When, how, and why you need to use dither 
  • Perform basic mastering using multiband compression, EQ, and limiting

What you need to bring

Headphones (not earbuds!), a USB hard drive or pen drive (16GB minimum) for backing-up your work, a notepad and pen/pencil for making notes. Please feel free to bring along an electronic device to record audio/video of tutor demonstrations. 

Tutor: Andrew Nicholls

Andrew started his career in 1996 as an assistant engineer at London’s Matrix Recording Studios and progressed into an in-house record/mix engineer.

In 1999 he moved on to Whitfield Street Recording Studios/Sony Music Studios; working as a Pro Tools operator on a wide range of orchestral, film, and rock and pop sessions, before going freelance in 2003.

He then worked with the artist Sade for six years as an engineer and programmer, gaining co-writing credits on two songs on her “Soldier of Love” album (2010).

He has taught sound engineering and music production since 2011, and in 2017 graduated from University of Hertfordshire’s MSc Music and Sound Technology (Audio Engineering) programme with distinction. 

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