1. You found us! Yay!
Most probably you have come from the mixanalog main page. Here, you can find some general info about us, like what gear we offer at the moment, how much it costs to use it, how it sounds and some other FAQ. But the good stuff happens when you click the big green button "ENTER THE STUDIO".
2. Log in or make an account
If you've been here before and have already created an account, simply enter your credentials or click one of the third-party log in options. If not, choose the way to create a new account to your liking - you can either use your Facebook or Google account, or create a mixanalog specific account with an email and a password. In any case, we take good care of your data and conform to all the strict European privacy directives.
3. The booking page - also known as the "Lobby"
This is the control panel for your projects. Think of it as a coffee shop next to the studio, where you can sit with your laptop, prepare the tracks and plan your process, so you can spend the time booked in the studio as efficiently as possible.
*Before the virutal tour of the booking page - a word on MATs. MAT stands for "mixanalog token" and before you start screaming "aaargh, another blockchain, noooo!!" let me calm you down - it's not a cryptocurrency. It's only an internal usage credit system that lets us unify the whole booking process while still accepting lots of different currencies for purchase and subscriptions, hand out rewards or free time on specific gear and so on.
On the HOME tab, you will see the gear selection tabs and an array of little squares that represent time slots for the selected piece of equipment. Here you can book a session - a reservation for a time period on a piece of processing gear (or a whole chain like our Rack1) that will be available only for you to process your tracks. But before you do...
In the SESSIONS tab you can see the past, current and future bookings. From here, you can continue working on the same track with the same settings as before - useful if you only have to make a few small tweaks for another bounce without the need to store and recall presets. You can also delete/cancel your current and future sessions if you've made a mistake when booking a time slot or finished a session early and you'd like to get some MATs back. In any case, that only deletes the time slot reservation - all the files asociated with the booking stay in your Files tab.
In the FILES tab you can find all your files - uploads and bounces. If you've created a new, fresh account, only two demo songs will be waiting for you there so you have something to try mixanalog with, even if you don't have your own material ready for that right now. But if you do, use the Upload New button to upload your files before you book or start a session, so you don't waste time waiting for the upload to finish when the clock is ticking.
This is where you can find the data about your account, a check-switch to allow us to send you emails (or not, but we really don't send a lot of them and it can be usefull to get a reminder shortly before your booking starts) and a link to our shop where you can either buy more MATs in one-time purchase packets or switch to a subscription that naturally packs even more bang for the buck.
3.1 Book a session
If you have your files ready, it's go time! First, select the piece of gear that you'd like to use from the tabs on the Home page and then select a time slot by hoovering over the bright-grey little squares and clicking the one that you'd like to reserve *. A pop-up will appear where you can name your session to find it more easily should you want to continue working on the song later, select the duration of the session and (un)tick the box for an email reminder shortly before the session starts. Click OK and that's it, you have booked a session!
* The time is displayed in your local time, so if it seems or bahves strangely, make sure your computer's time is synchronised to one of the global network time servers.
If you got the immediate time slot that's already active, a green Start Live button will appear to the left of the booking calendar. If you've booked a session for later, the text will appear to the left denoting the time until the booking starts. If it starts to lag or if by your local time the session should have started already, simply refresh the browser tab and the green button will appear.
Here we go!
4. Process your tracks on mixanalog
If you have used any audio software before, you should find this interface fairly familiar. To start processing your tracks, first select your source file from the menu on top. A green waveform will appear on the bottom and you can get to work!
If you experience glitches in the stream, click on the cog/gear icon next to the file selection dropdown to access the settings. Try raising the buffer length first and if that doesn't solve the problem, try one of the lossy formats (we recommend Opus, but it only works at 48kHz local sample rate). Those settings apply to streaming only, the processing and consequent bounces always happen at 192kHz and are downsampled as needed.
Other than that, pilot the machinery the same as you would with digital plugins! The settings are instantly applied to the automation circuitry and you can hear what you're doing with only the streaming's latency.
The meters on the dark-green IO unit are D/A (upper) and A/D (lower) converter levels and the two knobs next to them are digital gain/attenuation before D/A and after A/D.
The top-left meters are monitor/output meters and show the level that's going to be written to the file when you bounce the track. The inner two columns show the sample peak level and the outer two show rms/VU level with 300ms averaging.
Loudness metering is coming to mixanalog but in the meantime, you can use the VU meters to ballpark the momentary LUFS value, as the only difference is 400ms averaging time as opposed to 300ms.
When you're happy with what you're hearing, click the BOUNCE button in the lower-right corner. That will open a pop-up where you can name your processed file and select the target sample rate. We took great care in adjusting the resampler's parameters to get the best possible sound quality (we're using the SoxR resampler library) but if you want complete control over that process, choose 192kHz and resample the bounce with your own sample rate converter of choice.
Basicly, this is how to use mixanalog! For more in-depth info about particular pieces of gear please visit our YouTube channel, where you can find a playlist of tutorials and guides for every piece of gear that we offer, or join us on one of the bi-weekly live webinars on the same channel and ask away - we'll be happy to give any and all the info needed!