Do I really need CD Mastering?

Unmastered tracks suffer from many problems, see below for most common. ( Note: This is not a comprehensive list.)

1. Song volume varies from track to track.

2. Overall album volume and “punch” is low compared to professionally mastered CD’s.

3. Songs can vary tonally; some tracks can sound tinny (too much high end) or boomy (too much bass).

4. Vocals and/or specific instruments might be too quiet or loud, to an extent Mastering can correct this. (Note: Whenever possible it’s always best to fix issues like mentioned above during the mixdown phase.)

5. Fade-ins and fade-outs are uneven.

6. Noise at the beginning and end of each track.

7. Overall album does not meet Red Book spec. For the duplication site to accuracy reproduce your album it needs to adhere to Red Book spec.

8. Spacing can vary from song to song.

So to answer the question, if your looking to present your music in a professional manner mastering is imperative. The mastering process I provide corrects all of the above mentioned issues and then some. Your tracks will be shine and will exceed top current industry standards! If you have any additional questions on what mastering can provide please don’t hesitate to contact me.

I’m ready to master my release, what do you need from me?

  • Your mixdown audio tracks on CDR or DVD with no post processing. (Note: It’s always better to burn DATA and not audio that can be played on a CD player). The audio extraction process can induce errors from time to time.
  • Whenever possible, burn your audio as DATA be it a .WAV file or other format you prefer. If audio extraction is the only viable option I have many safeguards in place to ensure the best results, so don’t fret too much.
  • Material submitted (peak level) should be between -1dB and -4dB, this ensures no clipping is occurring.
  • Very Important; In all cases avoid any limiting, compression, normalization, and/or gain changes to your overall mixdown’s.
  • Send track list of each song along with any special instructions. An example of special instructions would be “I would like song “x” to fade out at 3:41″ or “with song “y” the vocals are not as loud as I would like them to be, please try to bring them up”.

How long does the process take?

  • Once I receive the pre-master tracks typical turn-a-round is 1 week. However, the process may be longer or shorter given the complexity of the project.
  • If you need your project expedited that can be negotiated on a case by case basis with a typical additional charge between $5-10 per track given the need date.

What format should my songs be in when I submit them?

  • .WAV is preferred but I can work with almost any format.
  • Accepted formats include:
  • .WAV, AIFF, AU, Ensonic Paris 24bit, Sound Designer II, Ulaw, and MP3.
  • If your preferred format is not listed please contact me. Chances are I will be able to work with it.

Do you do DVDs or CD Artwork?

  • DVD audio, Yes.
  • CD Artwork, No.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *