MASTERING ENGINEERS ADVICE

MASTERING FOR VINYL

advice mastering vinyl

MASTERING FOR VINYL

So, vinyl masters. There’s no reason why you should need a different master for vinyl than you do for CD or streaming. It depends how far you want to go with your vinyl master, but if you’ve mastered it correctly, it should translate straight to a cutting lathe, and they wouldn’t need to put any filters on it. The reason they do that is that the lathe doesn’t like essy noises. The stylus goes left to right when it’s in the top end which has high-speed frequencies. If it’s super bright in there, then it goes fast, and the friction...

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I SCREWED UP

advice focus mastering

I SCREWED UP

Sometimes we have to screw up to learn. One time I screwed up was around the early 2000s. I was working on an album called Vertigo, by Groove Armada. At the same time, I mastered a song called Sweet Like Chocolate, which was the number one record at the time, too. They were pressing quite a lot of these, and I was mastering both of them on the same day. They happened to be in the same room, and I put the sticker for Sweet Like Chocolate on the Groove Armada Vertigo album. They were in a rush to get...

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ONE THING THAT WILL X10 YOUR MASTERING RESULTS

advice mastering room speakers

ONE THING THAT WILL X10 YOUR MASTERING RESULTS

For years, I'd have everything in: I would be slapping this and that on, trying different equipment and plugins all the time. But that wasn't my problem. It wasn't the EQ, not the limiting. My problem was I couldn't hear what I was doing. Now, I don't have masses of equipment and plugins anymore. I don't need them, because I realised that the secret to great mastering was to have a room that I could hear what I was doing in. Now, what I do is spend a lot of time trying to get my room sounding better and tighter,...

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HOW TO CREATE IRRESISTIBLE MASTERING

advice low end mastering top end

HOW TO CREATE IRRESISTIBLE MASTERING

Something that I see people doing a lot is they'll start adding just top end to a master. They add some high end, and suddenly it's more open and louder, and then they add limiters on it, and they're done. I don't like it. That, for me, is a cheap gal: an easy trick to get something to sound louder and better instantly. It gets the job done, but weirdly. And you're never going to be able to get it sounding like incredible like that. You might as well just put it into LandR. Now, what you want to do...

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QUICK TIP: TIGHTING UP KICKS

advice low end mastering tips

QUICK TIP: TIGHTING UP KICKS

We all want that big, thumping kick going on. But sometimes it's quite hard to do because you might have a few different instruments working in that area, getting in the way of each other. The way I approach this is I forget about what's doing what and who's doing what in the low end. I'm listening to this whole sound of kick – not to the individual instruments – which goes anywhere from like 20 Hertz up to about 100 Hertz, and around the outside too. What I do is get that, so it's a bit tighter. For me,...

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