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Vocal Clarity in the Mix: Techniques to Improve the Intelligibility of Vocals

From interviewing leading professional mixing engineers and from research of known literature in the field common mixing techniques to improve the intelligibility of vocals were gathered. An experiment to test these techniques has been conducted on randomly selected participants with normal hearing and with no mixing or recording expertise. The results showed statistically significant differences between processed audio clips using these techniques versus unprocessed audio clips. To the author’s knowledge, this is the first study of its kind, which proved that certain common mixing techniques statistically improve intelligibility of vocals in popular music as perceived by human subjects.

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AES - Audio Engineering Society