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why my project and bounced stems sound different?


ni guang xin
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so in a previous post i mentioned my personal favorite way to bounce stems, well, actually i have very little experience with stems, and the previous methods i used aren't working as expected.

for some reason, when i bounce track/region in place, each bounced stem sound ok, but after bouncing every track, the project just sound different, so i try to dig and find what's wrong, and i discovered that the sidechains of the compressors on my bus/aux/stack (i only bounced midi and sample tracks, so the plugins on my bus/aux/stack are still there) are all set to internal, probably because i bounced the sidechain source into a stem too (the source is originally a quick sampler inst track), and the compressor got confused, after i re-route all those compressor sidechains to the source stem, the sidechain effect came back, but the whole track still sounds very different, like a very muddy mix.

i used a lot of bus sends, plugins on track stack and master output on my project, would that cause weird bounced stems?

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2 hours ago, ni guang xin said:

i used a lot of bus sends, plugins on track stack and master output on my project, would that cause weird bounced stems?

If you bounce with sends and master output plugins active, you get different results because each stem will have those effects on them.

And then when you put all those back into a new mix the master output plugins will be multiplied by all those elements. It will be different guaranteed.

So bounce stems with no master output plugins and only the essential sound of each track.

Add processing on the actual mix.

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On 11/10/2022 at 12:30 PM, triplets said:

If you bounce with sends and master output plugins active, you get different results because each stem will have those effects on them.

And then when you put all those back into a new mix the master output plugins will be multiplied by all those elements. It will be different guaranteed.

So bounce stems with no master output plugins and only the essential sound of each track.

Add processing on the actual mix.

thank you! i think that's just it, the bounced stems have the processing of the fx plugins on my master channel, and stack/group channel's fx, but i didn't delete those fx plugins after bouncing stems, so my sounds are going through those fx plugins twice.

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