super audio mastering studio

Bespoke packages to suit all Mastering needs
& Discounted Rates for Independent Artists!

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Approved 'Mastered For iTunes' facility!

Simon Heyworth Mastering

Mastering Engineer - Simon Heyworth

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Mixing in 5.1 Surround Sound from Stems or Multitracks

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Interleaved & Stem Mastering Options Available

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What is Mastering?

 

Why are my mixes not as loud as commercially released records?!

Why do my mixes lack the punch, presence, power of commercially released records?!

Why do my mixes just not sound ‘finished’?!

Why does my album not ‘sound like a record’?!

 

For the most part, the simple answer is that almost all commercially released records have been Mastered.

The Mastering process is the last creative/integral part of the audio production process & has been so from the early days of tape & vinyl.

Some even say Mastering Engineers are the wizards of CD production, mixing 90% science with 10% dark art!

So, What is Mastering..?

 

Mastering is the final stage/part of the production process. It involves an experienced engineer (in an acoustically controlled space) lending an objective ear to your final mixes to see how they could be improved. Sometimes a mix is so good that it needs no extra help, but you need the critical/objective ears of your Mastering Engineer to help decide that for you.

 

If extra help is needed, the Mastering Engineer will use the tools at their disposal, hopefully only needing to apply some judicious Equalisation, Audio Compression and Peak Limiting (in the Analogue or Digital domain) to help bring your mix to life.

 

Across a collection of songs, or an album, a seasoned Mastering Engineer will be able provide continuity and establish a relationship between your tracks that will make them sound like they belong together. With modern recordings taking place at various different times and in different studios, it is incredibly important to make your record flow and feel like a journey.

 

The bottom line is, the Mastering process and the Mastering Engineer will make your music sound ‘finished’ and ‘like a record’! This is what we do everyday across a wide range of genres and for a variety of formats.

 

Depending on what format you choose to release your music on will determine which Masters you need. We deliver Masters according to the specifications of it’s release so no extra degrading of audio quality is required. For more information about the different Master types that we offer click here.

 

To see what our clients think of our Mastering check out our Testimonials page…

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The Audio Production Process

 

Most records are –

  • Recorded (in one or a number of studios)
  • Mixed (by a Mix Engineer or the Artist)
  • Mastered (by a Mastering Engineer)
  • Then released via your chosen medium

What Is Mastering

Listen to the Before & After examples to hear the difference Professional Audio Mastering can make…

In the examples below there is a level difference between the Sources and Masters. More often than not the Mastering process will bring up the overall level (and perceived level) but this really is mix dependent.

 

Also, you must remember that in most cases the mix engineer/client is happy with the mix and are looking for that final polish that Mastering offers.

 

So when reading the listening notes below, these are not in any way critical of the mix engineer but only how we perceive the balance and how the process we have applied has changed the music.

UnMastered

 

viseMenn – “Don’t Let It Break” (Original Mix)

With thanks & best wishes to Helge and the guys!

http://www.visemenn.net

© & ℗ 2015 viseMenn

The Source Mix

Listen to the low end content and the way the kick drum and bass guitar interact. They are there but a bit clouded and fluffy which affects the way the guitar is perceived as it clouds the low end of it and all has a general lack of clarity/definition.

 

Likewise the drums (overall) feel quite far away and could do with coming forward to help glue the track together.

 

Finally, the backing vocals are audible but could be more supportive. The lead vocal is smooth and glossy but some articulation on a few lines is lost.

Mastered

 

viseMenn – “Don’t Let It Break” (Master)

http://www.visemenn.net

© & ℗ 2015 viseMenn

The Master

Listen particularly to the low end. The low end is tighter, the kick drum cuts through (but not too weighty) and the bass guitar (clear and wiry in places) has a solid warmth that sits nicely between the bottom end of the guitar and the kick drum.

 

The guitars have a smoother ‘valve’ feel and the organ supports the low mids very well.

 

Finally, there is now additional clarity in the vocals so that every line is audible and less muffled. Although this has a ‘warm’ vocal sound it now feels less embedded and leads the rest of the band.