Mastering is the final stage of audio production before duplication/distribution, it's a chance to check that the audio is ready for consumption and fix/enhance the audio for listening in the real world.
Mastering is a bespoke service which is never the same for two pieces of audio. It is usually comprised of two mind sets; firstly the adjustment of the tonal balance, dynamic content and presentation of the source to optimise the audio for playback (this may be purely objective or subjective, most likely a combination of both), and secondly the creation of a production master(s) which is dependent on the output format(s) desired.
Sure, I have a client listening area (including WiFi and plug access), parking spaces and tonnes of coffee.
I find it's best to drop in at the start, do a track together and then come back at the end for the sequencing, but we are open to whatever you desire/require. Just let us know and we can arrange this.
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This is kind of a “how long is a piece of string” question, but I understand that releasing music is complicated (I do it myself a lot also!) so you need to have an idea.
Generally it never takes more than 3 working days to get a proof back to you after receiving the premasters. Sometimes I will be away touring with various bands and other times I may be off sick, but I will let you know in advance of receiving of your project if this is the case.
I can do, although often a perfect stereo mixdown yields the best results, but I will happily take stems at an added cost.
They may be useful in attended sessions when the producer wants to hear the levels in a better listening environment. However, these sessions are fairly rare.
The mastering processing applied is normally judged on what the audio requires, not the path the audio passes through, but one difference here at Subsequent Mastering is we can do any combination you desire.
Tape to tape (AAA) via analogue only processing can be provided, as can pure in-the-box digital mastering, all with no compromise in the signal path and completely optimised for what you desire.
I don't cut master discs. What I do is called a "vinyl premaster". This is essential for producing a great cut from your source files.
This is simply the sides of the vinyl in 24 bit, levelled correctly, without any digital loudness processing applied. This provides the cutting engineer with an optimum source file and avoids sequencing issues.
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For more information and ponderings please take a look at my blog.