If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the years, its that the audio world loves to debate things. And there are few things in audio that stir as much controversy and discussion as Pan Laws.
What the heck is a Pan Law? Do they matter at all to your day-to-day?
Well, yes and no.
Do they matter? Sure!
To your day-to-day? Probably not.
What happens though is a user will stumble onto the Logic Pan Law Settings. Then they’ll start flipping through the different options as they play their Project.
And suddenly their mixes now sound wider, or more 3-D than they did before. Did they just stumble across the third dimension of audio production??
Eh, not really.
But this is where the conversation starts to turn up. And folks like to debate which Pan Law is better than which.
Here’s the thing – Pan Laws are a tool for managing our perception of volume as we pan our tracks.
When you pan your tracks from the center to the far left and far right, I’m gonna bet you expect that track to stay at the same level no matter where its placed.
The weird thing is, they do change in volume. At least with Logic’s default Pan Law Setting.
A track’s volume changes as we pan so the track volume sounds consistent. That means there’s no audible level boost or cut from the center to the far left and right and back.
It turns out that Panning a track from the center to the hard left or right results in a perceptual change in volume. Even if a track’s level is identical, the farther from center it is, the quieter it sounds.
So Pan Laws adjust the level of that track as its panned so it sounds like the volume hasn’t changed at all.
It doesn’t get more abstract than Pan Laws. So let’s dig into today’s video.