People usually hear music in Mono. While most systems reproduce in Stereo, most people are not sitting in the optimal position to hear Stereo. If your speakers are close together like on a Laptop or an iPod Dock you are essentially hearing the mix in Mono. If the Stereo System is in a corner and you are across the room you are hearing the mix in Mono. So what does this tell you? You should take Mono pretty damn seriously. One of the oldest mixing tricks in the book, is to get out of the perfect listening position and listen to your mix around a corner. This is one of the best real world checks you can get, since this is how everyone will hear your mix! I often find myself confused about the vocal level at the end of a mix, but the second I hear it on my laptop in a near mono environment, I know where the vocal is sitting! Mono Rules!
This is the second post in a series where we will be discussing how listening in Mono can help your mixes.Check out Part 1 and 2.