Mono compatibility in music production

Under mono-compatibility understand them as possible lossless playback option on playback devices with only a loudspeaker. Strictly speaking, with the mono signal, the original stereo signal is mixed together from the left and right channels. One speaks here of a “mono reproduction”.

Why is mono compatibility so important?

Mono compatibility in music production is so important because the song is perceived as being much more balanced and powerful when there is a good relationship between the mid and side signals. Especially with playback media with only one loudspeaker, or with many club PAs, playback is in mono. In addition, many club sound systems, smartphones, tablets or other playback and playback media only reproduce their sound in mono. So this is very much about how much of the original sound is reproduced on such devices.

How can one find out the mono compatibility?

The mono compatibility can be achieved with a so-called Correlation meter or goniometer determine. Often the conventional audio interfaces also have a mono switch with which the middle signal can be output in isolation. It is therefore advisable for the mix and also for mastering Check the mono or mid-range signal and possibly less to mix in stereo. With panning up to approx. 65% (of 100) you usually get few problems with the Mono signal.

Which instruments / sounds should be mono compatible?

In order to answer these questions, we must first ask ourselves which elements in our production are so-called “lead sounds”.

Example of lead sounds within a song:

  • Kick drum
  • bassline
  • Snare
  • Hi hats
  • Lead synth
  • Piano
Of course, this list could be continued. It's just to show that all parts that are important should have some degree of mono compatibility. With a “lead synth” this can sometimes become a problem.

Our tip for a good mono compatibility of stereo sounds:

  1. Simply duplicate the stereo sound as a track.
  2. A stereo imager is placed on the duplicated track.
  3. Now set the entire signal to mono.
  4. Mix in the pure mono signal at will, depending on the volume.


We make sure that your song has the correct stereo width and sufficient mono compatibility.

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