Mixing my own music. Should it be left to the pros?

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    I have always thought composing professional sounding music is comprised of two parts. Creating and Composing the actual music itself and sound engineering the music.

    My questions is since I am mostly a composer and not a sound engineer, should I pay someone to mix and master my music at least in until I get my music into a library? It seems cost prohibitive to do so since there is no guarantee of getting a placement. Also the libraries I have submitted to don’t give any feedback as to why my music wasn’t accepted (It obviously could be a variety of reasons.)

    I have been learning how to mix my music for a few years now but I don’t want to hold myself back while waiting to become as good a mixing engineer as a composer. It seems to me that a lot of people write and mix their own music for a reason.


    One thing you could do is go the the libraries you want to have your music in and review the tracks they have signed. Compare them to your mixes. Also make sure that the style of your music would fit into what they sign.

    I believe there is a peer section on the forum for input as well.

    And for further educating, I recommend groove3.com Fantastic tutorials on all aspects of recording/writing/production etc..

    Good luck and Happy New Year!


    Thank you so much I will check out that link. My thinking was to just improve my skills with all aspects of the process.

    I didn’t know if some chose to have their music professionally mixed for sake of getting accepted into a library at least initially. Thank you again!

    Art Munson

    From my point of view, as someone that’s been in the music making business for decades, I want to know/learn as much as I can. Whether it’s composing, playing, engineering or mixing. In this day and age there are a lot of tools available that make it much easier, including a lot of free info and YouTube videos. For software I use Ozone 9 but there are many other ways to get there.

    As for mixing: I will hire someone on special projects but it’s very rare. Frankly I enjoy doing as much as possible myself.


    I think you should be capable of mixing your own music competently in this day and age. It’s already hard enough to make money just entering into the library world as a beginner. I can’t imagine how negative you’d go if you were paying someone to mix every track.

    In the highest of high end library work, working for the biggest publishers and being paid well up front for each track, it could be beneficial. In fact, some libraries even do the mixing in-house without you having to pay for it. But for the majority of us trying to work our way up, I’d say mixing is an essential skill.


    Thank you for sharing. Yes i myself enjoy the process of creating. I just starting using UA LUNA about a year ago after switching from Protools. I also compose in Abelton Live.

    Mixing is an art form also and I guess it’s true to just practice practice practice. I have even taken some private lessons also which has been helpful. Your input is greatly appreciated and for newbie like me this has been great hearing different comments.


    The music library business is as much a game of numbers as it is of quality. Having every track mixed by someone else would be a very costly affair and it will take you a much longer time to make money from it. So, self-mixing is definitely an essential skill. Its also crucial to be able to mix your own tracks when there are short-deadline briefs from your library… sometimes you have to compose, produce, mix and master a track in less then 24 hours.

    There are hundreds of videos on Youtube giving out good mixing advice. And these are all just principles. As you keep applying them on every track you make you’ll find your skills increasing each day.

    All the best!


    Thank you!

    Roscoe Foderotz

    Start with the pink noise, 6db or white noise method to get your feet wet and develop from there. EQ, compression, reverb, etc are all other areas of the craft that will need to be learned as well, but this should put you close to where you need to be. If you are mixing ITB be sure to throw in a piece or two of analog gear and you’ll be set.


    This is great advice thank you. Practice makes better so I will try this tip. I just started using UA Luna too which is exciting.


    If you have a “pro” mix all your music, and you pay fairly, you’ll never make any money in this biz. There are a couple libraries that will mix your cues, but they are few a far between. I think Warner Chapell does – or at least did. But they don’t seem too interested in tracking down royalties, so…..


    As others mention it’s not finacially viable to pay someone else to mix your library music tracks.

    It might be worth doing it once or twice just to hear the difference especially if the mix engineer is willing to walk you through the session as a learning experience/tutorial.

    But otherwise I’d say the best way to learn is to do a lot of mixes alongside some type of educational resource. My reccomendation is the book ” Mixing Secrets For The Small Studio” by Sound on Sound’s Mike Senior as it comes at the subject from the angle of getting pro quality results from a home studio and you basically follow the steps in each chapter which I think works better than random YT videos as it helps lay the foundations first ( i.e. it starts with the sound of the room )


    As others already said, it’s probably a bad idea to do this, because it’s not sustainable for a lot of library music work.

    However… as someone who can do a half-decent mix of my own work (nothing amazing but good enough for TV), I still benefit a ton from having a pro mix my work, which happens most of the time because I have sought out libraries that pay for it.

    If you’re starting out and aiming more at the kind of library that needs more quantity of tracks than quality, then I would suggest it’s best to try to crank up your own mixing skills as soon as you can.

    But if you’re already a pretty good composer and producer, and aiming more at the higher end – like libraries that focus not just on unscripted tv but also sync fee generating placements like tv ads and trailers, then I actually think it might be smart to present your tracks in the best way possible… paying even $600 for someone great to mix a track could be a smart investment.

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