Dec 13

How to Select a Mastering Engineer

Selecting the right mastering engineer for your music is an important decision to make. With everyone vying for your attention and claiming to be the best, it can be difficult to differentiate between various engineers. While we’d love for you to go with us right now, we understand it’s still a decision, so let’s talk about how to select a mastering to select a mastering engineer

The first thing you’ll want to do is limit your search to mastering engineers who are willing to offer a free test master for you. Even if it’s just a partial sample of one of your songs mastered in their hands, good mastering engineers stand by their work enough to offer you a free sample before you spend a dime on them. By the same token, you should be wary of mastering engineers who do not offer free test masters as this is a sign that they don’t stand by their work.

Secondly, make use of this test master so that you can get a good idea what your music specifically will sound like in their hands. Just because someone has a good track record of clients doesn’t mean that they’re the best fit for you. Typically if you’ve worked with a mastering engineer before then you know they may be a good fit for you, but don’t go with someone exclusively based on reputation.

Also, don’t discount engineers who don’t specifically master for your genre. Many audio mastering engineers work in various genres and master for all artists, and truthfully some of the best engineers are versatile in their abilities to take on multiple genres and make the artists in any of them sound better. This is a better sign than someone who exclusively works in on genre. Of course you don’t want to go with someone who exclusively works in a genre which is substantially different from yours as you likely won’t be satisfied with someone who doesn’t know what to listen for in your genre.

Also confirm with the engineer before any money changes hands that they offer edits if you’re dissatisfied with their work in any way. The best engineers stand beside their work in this way and care about their clients’ satisfaction as the bottom line. Our engineers will work tirelessly with you until you’re satisfied with the results of your master, even if that’s not the first or even second edit.

Dec 27

My Complete Audio Mastering Tutorial

Audio mastering is more than just boosting volumes or even putting together a completed album file to be sent off and replicated. The most important part of mastering is certainly the aspect of enhancing and improving the audio itself as much as mastering tutorial

All throughout the music production process you are working to create the best sounding record possible. After you have chosen your guitar sounds and recorded the various tracks which make up your songs and even going through the process of mixing them, there is still work to be done in the mastering stage.

Through the artful and effective implementation of effects like reverb you can bring out the full and true potential of a song as a last step before releasing it to your listeners. You can think of mastering as a kind of final quality assurance in a number of ways but it can be expensive depending on the engineer you go with to have it done professionally.

Some engineers charge upwards of over $50 for a single song which can really break the bank when you’re putting together a 10 or 12 songwriter. For all of this, I’ve put together my own audio mastering tutorial which you can use to achieve and realize the ceiling of potential in your own music.

I mentioned EQ in opening. Equalization analog or digital of fact which separates the full audio spectrum of your song into different bands of frequency. Most commonly you’ll find either a three or four band equalizer which break your music up into low mid and high ranges which you can then tweak further to improve the sound and diminishing or boosting the presence of each one of those bands.

Tweaking different bands will yield different results. For instance, boosting the low end will give your record a figure based year town. On the other end you can boost the high frequency to get a cleaner sound but if you abuse it and go too far in that direction than you’ll find the music will get to tinny and certain vowels and the vocals will have too much sibilance.

You can boost ranges to make up for voice which existed in the recording stage and compensate when something was lacking. On the other hand if something is straining the mix, you can diminish its influence just as easily by dropping that band in the area that you want.

Other effects can be used like reverb to give your song more atmosphere and add a bit of gloss to record which sounds too flat. Compressors can be used to limit the threshold of your audio when necessary, as well. Most of these effects are readily available in most digital audio workstations and there are number of free digital audio workstations available for download online. To simply upload the file for your song which you want to edit and master into your digital audio workstation and add these effects accordingly.

One final word of advice is that you should always upload the best quality files as possible before editing. As an example is much more preferable to upload a wave file of the song over an MP3 or other compressed file type which sacrifices quality for a smaller file size.

Remember that not all mastering studios will break your bank. Music Guy Mastering is currently offering a five dollar special on individual tracks. You need to hear the quality on your own music to believe it for yourself so receive your free test master right now by uploading one of your own songs and hearing the music guy mastering difference today by clicking on this link.

Dec 16

What is Mastering?

One of the most often misunderstood terms and aspects of audio production relates to mastering. Most people ask what is mastering because they have no concept of what goes into it and why it is necessary. This article is going to answer the question what is mastering and remove the confusion surrounding it.

When you get down to it, mastering is a two-part process. You can actually just be a one part process depending on what you want to have done. Let me explain.what is mastering

The first part of mastering which applies to everyone who gets it done generally refers to the actual audio adjustments. After the band or musician has recorded their song and all the different tracks which make up that song, those tracks are rendered down into a final mix. This is a singular file which has all the tracks mixed precisely how the artist or mixing engineer wants them to give it the strongest and best possible sound.

That single file which represents a particular song is then sent off to a mastering engineer in order to enhance that found further. This involves applying popular plug-ins and effects such as compression and equalization and reverb to that final mix file. Many of these effects can be used in the mixing stage but you generally don’t want to apply one single effect to an entire set of tracks but instead you want to apply them to one single file as this will yield a different result. The differences are not applying compression to 24 individual tracks at once, you’re applying it to one single track which has already been rendered.

The effect of a good mastering job is like removing the wrapping from the songs to hear it more crisply and with more clarity. A lot of people make the mistake of assuming that mastering simply boosts the overall volume of a song and while this is generally a byproduct of mastering, this should never be your end goal.

In addition to enhancing and improving the audio itself, the other half of mastering involves writing data to each individual song and creating an album file out of those songs. This includes things like setting the table of contents and setting the transitions between each track in terms of spacing or whether they flow into one another.

Another important part is ensuring that the entire album as a whole is in very in terms of volume with itself and all the different tracks which make it up. The engineer also make sure that the overall album file is on par with other contemporary records in terms of volume as a whole.

Those last two points ensure that there are no jumps were dropped in volume within the record itself and that individual tracks on the record when taken out of context of that record are still at comparable only levels with other contemporary songs of the day so that when someone is listening to one of your songs and a mix along with songs from other artists, there are no significant jumps or drops in volume.

Dec 05

Why Should You Be Interested in Mastering Music?

Mastering music is the final aspect of audio production, occurring in the post production stage and can do so much to bring out the full but hidden potential of your music. A lot of artists do not understand the point of mastering music or don’t fully understand what is involved in it, so in this article we are going to talk about why you should be interested in mastering music.mastering music

First off, mastering music ensures that every track which make up your album are all on the same volume level with one another. This is a problem with unmastered audio because when songs are recorded, they are often done so in different settings with different setups. Some songs with less tracks which make up those songs will be quieter overall than a song with lots of tracks which were recorded possibly with more gain.

Ultimately the mastering engineer ensures that each of these songs are on the same volume level with one another so that they place flawlessly next to one another on your record with no noticeable jumps or drops in volume.

Secondly and in the same vein, mastering music boosts the volume of the entire record to be on point with the standards of the music industry. This is the most misunderstood aspect of mastering because most people assume that this is all that the process is, just making the music louder.

The truth is, music which is recorded in less than ideal conditions sounds better louder than it does quieter as you can more clearly hear the dynamics, and a lot of low quality engineers don’t enhance the audio but simply boost the volume to give the impression of improving the audio. Some of them even advertise this point exclusively to their unwitting audience of artists who don’t know any better, but the true purpose of mastering music is my next point.

The most important point of mastering music is to make it sound better, and in the hands of an engineer who really knows what they are doing, it sounds a lot better. If you knew the difference then you would never even think about releasing your music to your fans before a quality mastering job. This difference is accomplished through the artful application of effects and plugins such as eq which breaks the audio spectrum into more specific bands or ranges for better editing to supplement the mix where necessary and compression and limiters to address clipping and to give the track more unity overall.

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Nov 14

Before You Pay for Online Mastering Consider This

Online mastering refers to submitting your music to an engineer for mastering services on the internet. Most studios work with digital audio nowadays so it’s easy after the tracking process to render your final mix down to a final Wave file which can then be sent off to the mastering engineer all via the internet. You may not even ever meet your mastering engineer, you can simply give him or her feedback on what you want and the entire transaction can be communicated via phone or mastering

Before you go with an online mastering engineer, consider a few things. First of which, think about what kind of work you need done. How many tracks do you need mastered? Do you know what format you’re interested in releasing your music in? If you’re interested in a digital only or online release, then that’s pretty straightforward as the only thing necessary is to master the audio itself.

This is done by artfully and judiciously adding effects like equalization to the final mix in order to bring out the true potential of that record. You can cut the mix’s audio into different frequencies which you can boost or diminish in their presence in the mix to attain a better sounding mix overall. If you’re lacking in the bass area you can boost the low end of the spectrum and this effect is effective for supplementing and making up for less than ideal recording conditions.

Other effects such as reverb can give your mix more atmosphere in case you were not recording in the best space acoustically. The online mastering engineer also ensures that every song of your album is at a harmonious volume with every other track on that record and boosts the overall volume of the record to be compliant with current day standards.

This is the extent of audio mastering itself, but if you require additional services you need to let them know. For instance, if you want to release your music in a physical format like CD or vinyl then there is additional work to be done. For instance, when mastering for a CD you have to consider sequencing or how each track flows into the next in terms of spacing. The engineer also can add data which can be read by car stereos or computers when that CD is loaded to display information to the listener. This part also comprises adding copyright and code information for that artist.

Make sure that you establish things like the price and the option for edits up front. You don’t want to get in an awkward spot at the end of the session when you want some extra work done and the engineer invoices you for that work because you weren’t on the same page in the offset.

Oct 14

What Are ISRC Codes For?

One of the final aspects of audio production involves mastering a track and this is typically when the ISRC codes are written to a track or a CD file. Many artists either do not understand what ISRC codes are necessary for and that’s only if they have even heard of the term before.

What Are ISRC Codes For?

An ISRC code is used to track sales of a particular track both for simple reporting purposes as well as ensuring that the owner of that song or better said the writer of that track gets paid the royalties which they deserve for having written that track when a sale is generated.what are isrc codes for

Each and every song which you write if you are interested in selling your music should have an ISRC code. This data is necessary when writing the data to a track or a CD as well as when you upload your music to a modern online merchandiser such as BandCamp or an online streaming service like Spotify.

Unfortunately there is a cost associated with obtaining ISRC codes for your own music. This comes at a one time cost to you from ADD NAME OF PLACE. Fortunately it is just a one time fee for you to be in their database and for you to obtain your unique code. Once you have your unique code (which consists of your 2 digit/letter country code + a 3 digit/letter unique code for your band/label), you can go ahead and begin creating your own ISRC codes.

A sample ISRC code would be: QM (the current country code for new artists and labels based out of the US)-HMR (a random code assigned to a particular band or label)-12 (to represent the last two digits of the current year when the song was released)-00001 (to represent that this is the first ISRC code created in that year). So once you know your country code and unique code, you can begin creating ISRC codes based on the order in which you release your music.

If you have a new CD with 5 tracks and it is the first thing which you put out that year, your code would be QM-(your unique 3 digit/letter ID)-12-00001.

You may wonder why the country code for the US is QM rather than US. The truth is it used to be US but the number of bands coming out of this country exceeded the number of combinations possible so they transitioned to QM.

You have your unique ID for life and never have to pay to renew your account or anything like that and can create up to 99999 ISRC codes for a given year. Obviously no artist would put out that many songs in a year but some of the largest labels on the planet create codes for every artist on their label using the same unique ID.

Sep 22

What Does Song Mastering Do?

Song mastering is much more popular on an individual basis than it once was. In the past, virtually all artists would have their entire record mastered at once and that would include sequencing of the record and making sure everything was at a volume which was in parity with every other song on the record so that when it got sent off to the CD or vinyl replication plant, there would be no mastering

Today, it’s a much different market when it comes to creating music. Many artists will forgo releasing their music and physical format and will stick exclusively to releasing their music in digital format. It’s much easier and it’s much more cost-effective for the artist which is why they do it. So instead of mastering an entire record, song mastering is applied to individual tracks and sometimes artists only put out one or two songs at a time.

They obviously still want to deliver the best sounding product to their fans and listeners, which is why they still go ahead with song mastering but it’s much more cost-effective than the cost of putting together an entire record.

In this case, the only aspect of mastering involved in song mastering is applying effects such as equalization, reverb, and compression to the track to improve the clarity of the song, give the song a sense of unity throughout itself, and to add more of a third dimensional element to the song, respectively. The dynamics of the song are maintained during a good song mastering job in the overall levels are boosted to be on par with that of current and contemporary popular songs.

Music Guy Mastering is currently running a special on individual song mastering at just five dollars per track. You will not find more affordable rates for the amazing level of quality which you’ll receive. If you’re not convinced, I strongly recommend that you receive your free test master of one of your songs right now so that you can experience your music and how good it could be sounding within the hands of the capable engineers at Music Guy Mastering.

Sep 11

3 Reasons to Consider Music Mastering

Music mastering is the final aspect in music production which occurs after the artist has recorded their music and they or their mixing engineer has turned in a final mix of a song/record. The final mix is turned over to the music mastering engineer and is an incredibly important final aspect before releasing that music to the fans for 3 major mastering

First, music mastering works to ensure that the overall volume levels of the record are in parity with other contemporary tracks of the time. Music has gotten louder over the years, that’s a fact for better or worse, and if you put out your music at a lower volume than other artists it can be a major annoyance for your fans who are listening to your music, particularly while in a mix with music from other artists. Ultimately it also just comes off as unprofessional, so the audio mastering engineer works to ensure that your music is on par level wise with the industry standards of the day.

Secondly, music mastering involves putting together the finished product for your listeners. This means creating an album which is at unity in terms of levels with itself, adding important data such as ISRC codes, and creating the breaks between tracks on the record in terms of how each track flows into one another as per the artist’s preferences.

Finally and most importantly, music mastering significantly improves the overall quality of your music. Even after the mixing phase has been completed, the mastering engineer can artfully apply analog and digital effects such as compression, EQ, and reverb to bring the overall audio quality of each of your tracks to another level.

Typically artists who are not previously familiar with mastering or have never had any of their music mastered are blown away with the very palpable improvement which a good mastering engineer can contribute to their music. While it’s not ideal, the mastering engineer can even touch up and cover up slight imperfections in your audio such as a clip here or there and bury it in the mix. Again this is not ideal but it just gives you an idea of how much power a skillful music mastering engineer can wield over an otherwise finished track.

If you’re unsure as to whether or not music mastering is right for you then consider getting a free test master before risking any of your money. Most reputable mastering engineers offer this so that the artist can clearly hear and decide for themselves whether or not the engineer is the best fit for them.