Here’s the deal: Having a nice wide stereo spread is great. It helps your mix sound more spacious and less cluttered. Instruments seem to fight less and everything just sounds more clear. But our brain reacts differently to a wide stereo spread in high frequencies than it does in low frequencies. Large stereo spread in high frequencies = good. Large stereo spread in low frequencies = not so good.
The problem exists because of the way our ears and brains are used to hearing sounds naturally. With low frequencies, we can’t really detect where a sound is coming from. It’s the high frequencies that lets us know where a sound is coming from.
This can lead to some major issues when mixing on monitors. You might have some low frequencies that are coming out of only one speaker, and you won’t be able to tell. Put on headphones, and it becomes immediately obvious that there is a problem. You can feel your head instinctively turn as your brain tries to figure out why the low end sounds so unnatural.
This is where Mongoose comes in. It takes all those wide low frequencies and puts them right in the middle where they belong. The result is a low end that translates better to headphones and 2.1 systems, and just provides a tighter, more natural sound overall.
This plugin really couldn’t be any easier to use than it is. Just set your crossover frequency, and everything below that is summed to mono. You can also fine tune how wide the stereo image is by adjusting the width knobs. This is the kind of plugin that should automatically be on every master bus.
See it in Action – Extreme panning with Mongoose
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