Previously hosted at KVR Audio, the mixing competition known as the Mix Challenge has now launched its own domain with a brand new forum and Patreon page for supporters.
The first Mix Challenge contest at KVR Audio took place back in 2014 (here’s the link to the old contest page) and held 31 competitions to date. It has now moved to a new domain, but kept a similar format with the same rules (here’s the official Rule Book) and great software and soundware prizes for the winning contestants. Everyone is invited to join, from beginners who want improve their mixing skills to professionals who would like to join a group of fellow mix engineering veterans.
The concept is pretty simple – held once per month, each iteration of the Mix Challenge allows the entrants 21 days to come up with the best possible mix using the provided raw mix files. The raw files are supplied by a different volunteer every time and, what’s particularly useful for beginner mix engineers, emulate the exact type of material you’d get when working on a commercial mixing project for a client. Apart from submitting the final mix, the entrants are also required to provide the documentation of their work on the project, so that everyone could learn from each other. The “virtual client” (who is actually the volunteer who provided the raw files for the challenge) picks three winners and the winners choose the prizes from the available prize pool.
Since the Mix Challenge is now runnning its own domain and is being hosted on a paid server, they have also launched a Patreon page to invite entrants and sponsors who would like to support the project and help cover the hosting costs. Higher tiers have the option to receive 1-on-1 mix tutoring lessons, or, in case of companies, place banners on the Mix Challenge website.
So, if you’d like to test and improve your mixing skills in a simulated commercial mixing project, the Mix Challenge is one of the better options. It is completely free to join and is well-organized, with several years of experience behind the project. From my personal experience, practicing mixing on other people’s songs is way more effecting than learning to mix properly on tracks that you’ve recorded and performed yourself.
More info: Mix Challenge