What is Audio Mastering?
Audio mastering is the final and most critical step in the post-production process. It’s the stage between the final mixdown and the distribution of your music. Once mastered, your songs are then ‘release ready’ and will stand up comparably in quality and loudness to commercially released music.
Although considered by many to be a somewhat ‘dark art’, the truth is that audio mastering is a process that relies on a combination of real world experience and technical knowledge. An engineer can learn the basics of audio mastering in a very short time but will only become a good mastering engineer whilst mastering many different genres of music over several years. This experience trains their ears in a way only experience can.
Using high end specialist audio equipment in an acoustically treated room, the experienced ear of a mastering engineer will polish your music and give it that professional edge in a highly competitive market. We use a mixture of high end hardware and software in our studio. Each mastering project is different and this allows us to cater for all types of audio, from analog to digital.
Mastering applies common tools such as EQ, compression, expansion, image tools and limiting. One or all of the above tools are often used. No two tracks are the same and each track is treated individually, requiring a different solution to ensure the best results possible.
Although we always advise to fix any issues in the mixdown, mastering is also the last chance to repair any problems that occured in the recording process, such as click/glitch removal, de-essing and noise reduction etc. Of course, if we hear any issues we think can be fixed in your mixdown, we will advise you to give you the chance to amend it.