Music Recording

How to Deliver Stems to our Mix Engineers

You’ve finished production for your track and are now ready to get it mixed, mastered or both. Great! Figuring out how to get the song to the engineer can be a confusing challenge. This is why we’ve created this detailed and thorough walkthrough guide to help get your song from your studio to ours.

 

Part 1: Prepping Your Session

In order for the engineer to complete their best work in a timely fashion, some basic house cleaning must be completed first.  

 

  1. Commit: Remove any unused or unwanted tracks from your song

  2. Label: Once you have all the necessary tracks, label and arrange them clearly (e.g your kick track should distinctly be labeled KICK_1…KICK_2…SYNTH_1…) 

  3. Editing: Clean up any unwanted noises in the track (Keyboard clicks, Shuffling, amp buzz… you get the idea) also make sure NO TRACKS ARE HITTING RED, this will save you time and money. 

  4. Consolidate: Make sure all of your tracks START AT ZERO and have the same end time regardless of where they are in the song.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Consolidation Example:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    

  5. Effects: Typically, you should plan to leave everything off when you’re exporting your files. It's best to give your mixing engineer the rawest version of your tracks so they can have the most flexibility. Vocals, in particular, should be delivered dry. The exception, of course, is when the effect you’ve applied is integral to that track's tone or function. When in doubt send both a dry and wet option of the same track 

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Part 2: Exporting your Stems

Now let's go over exactly how to export your tracks from your specific DAW. Below you'll find

written instructions and linked videos will make sure the process is smooth and efficient. 

 

Reason: 

 

  1. Reason is the main DAW used in house, simply (file>save as> artist name_songname_multitrack delivery_x bpm) once the file is saved, zip the session into a folder and send it to the engineer.

  2. Video on how to export stem from reason: Reason: How to Export Stems

 

Garageband:

1. Solo the track you’d like to export

2. Go to “Share” ---> “Export Song To Disc”

3. Un-click the “Compress” box

4. Name the file your exporting, and direct it to land in the correct folder

5. Un-solo the track you’ve exported, and solo the next track you’d like to export

6. Rinse and repeat

Video: How To Batch Export Stems In GarageBand

 

Logic:

 

  1. Highlight all tracks you’d like to export by clicking and holding Shift

  2. Press Shift-Cmd-E

  3. Create a New Folder and label it

  4. Select “Trim Silence at File End”

  5. Select “Bypass Effect Plug-ins”

  6. Select “Normalize: Off”

  7. Hit Export

  8. Video: (11) The BEST Way to Send STEMS for Mixing | Exporting Tracks in Logic Pro - YouTube

 

FL Studio:

 

  1. Make sure every track is labeled correctly

  2. Make sure every track is being routed to a mixer channel

  3. Highlight all tracks

  4. Go to File → Export → Wave

  5. Create and name a new folder

  6. Select 24 Bit Depth and Re sampling 512 Point

  7. Select “Split Mixer Tracks”

  8. Disable “Insert Effects”

  9. Hit “Start”

  10. Repeat process and Enable “Insert Effects” if you wish to create “wet” versions of your tracks

  11. Video: (11) How To Export Stems From FL Studio 20 (Split mixer tracks) - YouTube

 

Ableton

 

  1. Highlight all tracks

  2. Shift+Cmd+R

  3. Under Rendered Track, Select “All Individual Tracks”

  4. Select “Wave” and “24 bit”

  5. Create and label and new folder

  6. Hit Export

  7. Video: The Best Way to Export Stems in Ableton Live | DECAP 🎶 👊 - YouTube

 

ProTools

 

Session Export:

(ProTools is used in house, click this guide to send the entire session instead of individual stems How To Send A Pro Tools Session To Your Engineer | Exporting The Session Like A Pro - Smart Rapper)

 

Stem Export:

 

  1. Make sure all of your editing moves are clean, all fades and crossfades are smooth, etc.

  2. “Save As” your session and label a new version of the session “..._multitrack export”

  3. Identify the point on the grid that will be the beginning of your tracks, usually 1-2 measures before the song begins

  4. Consolidate (Option+Shift+3) each track and its audio regions. Make sure you highlight up to the point on the grid you previously selected to be the beginning when you consolidate.

  5. Highlight and Select all of your tracks

  6. Export clips as files (Cmd+Shift+K)

  7. Select Wav/Interleaved/24bit/44.1hz

  8. “Choose” in the Destination Directory section a new folder for your tracks to go to.

  9. Hit Export

  10. To export a track “Wet” or with effects, solo the desired track, make sure the plugins/effects are engaged on the track, and hit Option+Cmd+B to “Bounce” that track.

  11. Video: Stem Export - Pro Tools - YouTube

 

 

 

Cubase

 

  1. Make sure all of your editing moves are clean, all fades and crossfades are smooth, etc.

  2. “Save As” your session and label a new version of the session “..._multitrack export”

  3. Go to your “Mix” window and click the small downward pointing arrow button in the top right.

  4. Select “Reset MixConsole Channels” → “Reset All”

Select all tracks (Cmd+A) and then the letter “P”

  1. File → Export → Audio Mixdown

  2. In the “Channel Selection” window on the left side, click “Channel Batch Export”

  3. Scroll down in the window and select “Audio Channels”

  4. Uncheck any Audio Channels that are Stereo - only choose Mono track for this first time around

  5. Click on “Naming Scheme…” and in that window, drag “Name”, “Channel Name”, and “Channel Number” in the “Result” section and hit “Okay”

  6. Under “Path” select your destination folder for your files.

  7. Select 24bit and 44.1hz or 48hz 

  8. Select “Mono Downmix”

  9. Click Export

  10. Return to Step 9 - now select all of your Stereo Audio Channels and select “L/R Channels” in Step 13.

  11. Video: (11) How to Export Stems In Cubase for Mixing and Mastering - MikesMixMaster.com - YouTube

 

Reaper

 

  1. “Save As” your session and label a new version of the session “..._multitrack export”

  2. Highlight the section on the grid that will be the beginning and end of your tracks, usually 1-2 measures before and after the song.

  3. While holding “Cmd”, click on each track that you’d like to export

  4. File → Render

  5. Select “Render: Stems (Selected Tracks)

  6. Under “File Name”, delete what was already there, and click “Wildcards”. Choose “tracknumber”, “track”, and “project”

  7. Under “Directory”, select that folder the tracks should be routed to.

  8. 44.1hz or 48hz  and 24bit.

  9. Check the box for “Use project sample rate for mixing and fx/synth processing”

  10. Check the box for “Tracks with only mono media to mono files”

  11. Select WAV

  12. bottom right, click “Render # Files…”

  13. Video: How to export stems of your song in REAPER - YouTube