good compression plus cut correct eq freq and analyzing master buss rms output by a db meter
will make your sound good....
I use a Roland KC 550 and it's barely 180 watts! It's EQing is also terrible. However it's built well enough to endure the road so that's one plus I guess! If you decide to go with a personal keyboard amp I would either step up to the better Roland model or look into something of a little more quality and wattage. I have a very loud guitar player in our band and there is some frequency space hogging going on from time to time as well.
I hope the OP has found a solution by now; it's been like a year and a half since they started the thread.
this whole discussion makes me really happy that i play harsh electronic music by myself. it's a good read, and very interesting, but it's nice to only have to compete with myself for space in my own music.
i don't think those problems have much to do with loudness. mostly, in my opinion, it is finding/tweaking the right sound unless there is no room for an additional sound at all. start with the filter - if you basically like a sound and it doesn't cut through the bass, open the filter and add more high end frequencies. if it clashes with the guitar, give the guitar space by removing mids from the synth sound and push the bass and/or treble frequencies. often it is also a question of how you arrange things - good arrangements often hardly need EQing.
always remember: you have a real synthesizer, in difference to a sample you can tweak all aspects of the sound. instead of using a compressor, shape the envelopes. instead of using an EQ, use the filter of the virus - just to give you a basic idea. if you cannot hear a bass sound, add distortion to add overtones etc. etc.
Hello Marc, thanks for the hints, so probbably by following this advice one get's a more stable sound, independent from PA equilization...Do you agree with this?
Correct compression, correct equing and correct panning.
You may say dynamics are lost but compression is essential. Our ears respond more to transients anyway, let them through a bit. Have more compressors but each doing less.
Pan out the instruments it can open up gaps for your sounds. Try taking the middle out of your synth parts, get them hard left hard right. I can go in deeper if interested.
Take out chunks of frequencies from sounds that arn't ment to be doing anything at that frequency... Even if they don't seem to be making a noise in it, cut it anyway.
It's all in the mixing
That means you're depending from the sound engineer...
You can do your own mixing which is an art by itself...
1.Use Sidechain or NY compression and exciter on your busses and some multiband compression...
2.Work on your sound design skills...Disable TI's EQ's and use filtering instead
3.Have visual feedback of pan,limiting,maximizing etc.
Sack the band... go solo!
Run your synth into the main mixer as usual. Duplicate a second copy of your synth output, and place it into the sidechain of all the other people's compressors. Thus, every time you hit a key, all their instruments are silenced and your synth is heard in all its glory
Alternatively. Switch on Osc-Sync. Raise the Pitch on Osc2. Add a little FM Amount to taste. Then widdle away... They will hear you all right. Bhuhahaa. :evil
This sounds like a problem of arrangement, in detail the balance of the sound of all your instruments in the band. Many people can't hear themselves neither in recording situations nor live situations and even not on the CD, or they have the impression, that they are not present enough - so they tend to increase their loudness, possibly by compression, even increasing the problem:
The higher the average level (= lower dynamic) the more is the level of importance and slight changes will let one instrument dominate and the another one "die". Try to use uncrompressed music and use in-ear-monitoring with increased individual volume. When rehearsing identify those passages of a mix, where individual instruments were to loud or not loud enough and change this individually. The musicians have to learn to do this. A Trick: Try to rehearse with the very lowest level possible and make sure still all instruments are present they way they have to for the particular role and point of time.
For Keyboarders and Synthieplayers fo example, one has to distinguish the parts in the mix where accompaingment and supporting is required and when solo or emphasis is done. Usually this is not possible to do without some loadness change during songs, and this often requires touching the volume knobs for certain channels (left hand, right hand, bass etc). Sometime a foot controller helps.
General emphasis by compression, presence-EQ-ing or enhancing by exciters are of no advantage and will lead to the loudness battle.
In some cases, expanders are usefull to emphasize an instrument's activity
Keyboard players are usually the sound engineer in a band, as they generally cover all the frequency range, unlike other members of the band... its good practice for you and a benefit to the band to learn recording and live mastering skills to be able to help the band gain a great live sound, as long as you are in control of course!... otherwise, its politics and lots of swearing, arguing, and peer pressure on the band to make them see the true color of music...
if you want more sound you have to unison to make it more fat and possibly louder. Remove verbs and delays and other effects that only make sounds less loud because of the headroom it needs to prevent distorted sound.
Also try to use as few layers as possible to get te loudest tune out of a virus for lifeplay purposes. That i think is the key for life play because with creating music in your daw you can use effects to pump sounds and life it gets a bit more complicated.
The best way is to have not more than 1 or 2 layers in your tune for max loudness out of the box.