Harmonic Mixing – Am I missing something?
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  1. #1
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    Default Harmonic Mixing – Am I missing something?

    I tried getting into this a while back using the Mixshare Rapid Evolution software (freeware) as I have always relied on my own ear and thought it would be interesting to see if this added anything to my sets.

    I found Harmonic mixing restricted my sets as I was missing certain amazing mixes I would have picked up on without looking at what track can go into another according to the Camelot wheel.

    I ditched the Rapid Evolution and have gone back to just learning my tracks and playing about with each one to see what fits etc. If a song is slightly out of key, I just change the pitch on Traktor and have found some incredible sounding mixes I would have missed out on if I had stuck with the Camelot wheel.

    I also found that some tracks mix well according to the key of the track when the Camelot wheel shows that this shouldn’t work. Does this mean the Camelot wheel is flawed or am I missing something?

  2. #2
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    Harmonic Mixing helps you at some level, but just because they are in the same key doesn't mean they won't clash. It still ends up sounding good or bad together. Some songs won't blend good whatever you do.

  3. #3
    Tech Guru Sherlock Ohms's Avatar
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    It's a tool, nothing else. You shouldn't feel constrained by it,

    If you feel the next tune is right, bang it on, don't dodge it because 'the Camelot wheel says it won't work'.
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    RGAS Guru Xonetacular's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crumarbit View Post

    I found Harmonic mixing restricted my sets as I was missing certain amazing mixes I would have picked up on without looking at what track can go into another according to the Camelot wheel.

    I also found that some tracks mix well according to the key of the track when the Camelot wheel shows that this shouldn’t work. Does this mean the Camelot wheel is flawed or am I missing something?
    This is exactly why I dislike the mixed in key hype on here and there's a thread about it every other day with people saying the same thing. It's overrated and for most people seems to be more of a detriment that a useful tool, just ditch it and use your ears. I've yet to be impressed by a set that religiously uses it and I think there are a number of things to consider when choosing a track and the camelot wheel notation is the last of them.

  5. #5
    Tech Guru Alex Wild's Avatar
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    Exactly. The whole concept seems bizarre to me.
    I've seen people saying that they sort their tunes by the key they're in?!
    Just play the tunes, if somethings not right you should be listening enough to notice and sort it.
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    Tech Guru MrPopinjay's Avatar
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    I found it insanely limiting, even more so when you bare in mind the error margin is quite large. Here's my system. Pick a track that might work, listen in the headphones? Does it work? No? Pick another. Yes? Mixing time.

    Btw- the Camelot wheel (or the circle of fifth for dummys as if should be known) isn't technically flawed but there's more to mixing than just keys and the detection software isn't all that.
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    RGAS Guru Xonetacular's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrPopinjay View Post
    I found it insanely limiting, even more so when you bare in mind the error margin is quite large. Here's my system. Pick a track that might work, listen in the headphones? Does it work? No? Pick another. Yes? Mixing time.

    Btw- the Camelot wheel (or the circle of fifth for dummys as if should be known) isn't technically flawed but there's more to mixing than just keys and the detection software isn't all that.
    This, someone should write an article for the blog or digital dj tips- "10 reasons why you shouldn't use mixed in key"

    I feel like a lot of the hype around mixed in key is straight from the company to sell the software and then there is this tendency of blogs to talk favorably about anything new that comes to the table that sounds like a good idea regardless of if it is actually helpful or detrimental in practice.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrPopinjay View Post
    I found it insanely limiting, even more so when you bare in mind the error margin is quite large. Here's my system. Pick a track that might work, listen in the headphones? Does it work? No? Pick another. Yes? Mixing time.

    Btw- the Camelot wheel (or the circle of fifth for dummys as if should be known) isn't technically flawed but there's more to mixing than just keys and the detection software isn't all that.
    Harmonic mixing principles only apply when there is melodic content in both track segments (i.e. mixing melodies). Much current music has little melodic content.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xonetacular View Post
    This, someone should write an article for the blog or digital dj tips- "10 reasons why you shouldn't use mixed in key"

    I feel like a lot of the hype around mixed in key is straight from the company to sell the software and then there is this tendency of blogs to talk favorably about anything new that comes to the table that sounds like a good idea regardless of if it is actually helpful or detrimental in practice.
    Mixed In Key is just one source for harmonic mixing information. The most reliable key information comes from musicians who manually key each track.

  10. #10
    Tech Guru MrPopinjay's Avatar
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    Exactly. There's so much more to it than that.
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