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Difference Between Sound Editing and Sound Mixing

Sound Editing vs Sound Mixing

Sound editing and sound mixing are two very technical topics that are involved in the creation of video; whether it’s short, amateur flicks, TV shows, or a full-blown movie. Although most people think that they are one and the same, the two are quite separate and distinct from each other. The clearest difference between the two is probably their order in the production process. Sound editing needs to be done before sound mixing can proceed.

Sound editing is a broad area that deals with preparing all the audio, whether it is voice, background noise, or sound effects that are to be used in the video. With voice, the task is generally making sure that the words spoken are clear and comprehensible. Background noise is there for the ambience and should not interfere with the scene. Any sound that is distracting needs to be removed. Sound effects which involve explosions, cracks of lightning, and many others are the most difficult since most of them need to be created from scratch.

Once the sounds have been created, it is then necessary to mix the sounds together into a single track. Mixing is pretty important as you just can’t mash the sounds together. In most cases the voice needs to be above the background noise so that the viewers would not have any problem understanding the conversation. But it is also up to the mixers to make sure that certain important sounds, like footsteps or a door opening, are clearly audible. These sounds may be important to the plot of the story or may just add to the suspense of the scene. Lastly, this is where music comes in. The proper addition of musical tracks in certain points in the story can increase the emotional impact of that scene.

Clearly, there is more going on behind the scenes than most people know or understand. Part of the irony of sound editing and mixing is you know that it was excellently done when you don’t notice them while watching the movie. The role of sound in a movie is to draw the audience into what’s happening on-screen and immerse them into the story as if they are actually there.


1.Sound editing comes before sound mixing in the production process.
2.Sound editing changes the characteristics of the sound while sound mixing doesn’t.
3.Sound mixing is concerned with the proper interaction of multiple sound sources.

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