Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
TankF

mastering q

20 posts in this topic

when sending a track to be pro mastered is it best to make it sound as good as possible with your own mastering? or do you send a copy with nothing on the master?

what about when sending your track to a label? unmastered? mastered best you can?

cheers!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First, find out what they're likely to do with it, and if they've got no idea, send them your best effort complete with as much main bus processing to the best of your ability.

Secondly, and this is the probably the preferred methodology, keep the main bus clean (ie. no processing/plug-ins etc).

There's, however, absolutely nothing wrong with using sub groups complete with EQ, compression, valve-effects etc. to tighten up, clarify, and personalise your signature sound.

In fact, if you're not already, I suggest you consider the sub-mix approach, with your entire arrangement  of instruments divided up and then bussed together into, say, 4 to 8 groups (eg. drums group, bass group, vocals group, guitars group, lead effects group, pads and strings group), and apply your processing to the groups as they need it.

This will allow you to, say, produce a slammin' drum and bass combo (compression/limiting) while the pads float around it without being cramped. Quite a different result than sticking a compressor/limiter across a single main bus, which is all the mastering engineer will essentially have to play with.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cheers spec. Thats pretty much exactly what i've started doing, good to know i'm on the right track.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

here's my sending stuff to be mastered tips:

like speccy said, sub group mixing is awesome and gives you heaps of individual control. SOME mastering studios prefer to master from seperations- not all i imagine as it is extra work (and costs extra) but it does give the mastering house more control.

if you're sending them stuff, if you have done your own master it's not a bad idea to include it as a reference guide, so they know what kind of sound you are after.

even better is to go along to the session and sit with the engineer.

check out these sites for info:

Seperation mastering: http://www.johnvestman.com/separations.htm

Jack the Bear Mastering FAQ http://www.jackthebear.com.au/faq.html

oh and where possible it's best to give a 24bit Digital version of the tune (not audio CD) - unless you are mixing on tape of course :angry:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is William Bowden still mastering for Festival Sydney?

http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendID=211830685

Looks like he was, now over at damien gerard studios:

http://www.discogs.com/artist/William+Bowden?anv=Will+Bowden

http://www.damiengerard.net/mastering.html

So who else is available in Sydney, especially those with an edge in 'electronic music' mastering, given it's what us Punks tend to lean towards?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

spectrum, the way u explained that way of combining the instruments sounds wicked, but i dont know how i'd go about doing my arrangement like that since im using FL. Hopefully someone reading this has some knowledge and can help us here.. but basically if ive got a kick sample, and i want to compress my kick on its own, i send it to a channel on the FL mixer and add compression to it. But once that samples been added to that channel, i dont know if i can still use that sample and send it to another channel along with the other samples  in my 'drums group' and then process them as a whole?

maybe ive just completely misunderstood your concept though hmm

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

^^^ I use FL too. You know what the sends are for yeah? The send tracks at the far right side of the mixer is where you can do your group processing. when you have your kick drum track selected on the mixer turn the knob at the bottom of the send track you want your kick drum track to feed into.

The great thing about FL is every channel on the mixer has the potential to be a send: press the little arrow thing at the bottom of a mixer track and bam, instant send.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

ohhh i cant say i do know what the sends are, but just picturing the mixer in my head (im at work) i know what your talking about..

so all i gotta do is go to the send channel, and turn the knob down the bottom whilst the kick is selected.. can i do this multiple times with different channels selected for the one send channel? dunno if that question makes sense lol

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lets say you have a kick going to mixer track 1, a snare to mixer track 2, some bongos or some shit to mixer track 3.

Then you want to add some reverb to them all.

Select send 1 (which you'll see on the right side of the mixer) and put a reverb on it.

Select mixer track 1 and turn the knob located at the bottom of Send 1. As you turn the knob you'll hear the kick getting verbed out.

Then select 2 and 3 and do the same, more or less depending on how much of the verb on your sounds. When you do this your telling your sounds to go via an additional mixer track before the master instead of going straight out of the master.

If you want one of your mixer tracks to become a send click the little arrow thingy when you have a different track selected and a little knob will appear above it.

Disclaimer: It seems to me like it makes sense but may not as i am pretty bent. For more info consult your help file.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

much love for the FL mixer!! I will normally setup a drum master bus and use it for compression/master automation and assign each instrument within the kit to its own bus.. and then link back to the master.. and use the sends for reverb as TankF has said. often I will have two linked busses for snare or kick one mostly dry with some eq /compression and the other with a distortion or something.. and then blend for taste.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

;D Bent in the day time! I wish I didn't have to work tonight.

Rewarding myself for sitting on the couch all day watching south park. Its a hard life.

Do any other DAWs have mixers with the capabilty to use mixer tracks as sends? By the time i'm finished with a track everythings getting sent all over the place. I dont know how I'd cope without it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

yeah, different implementations.

Ableton has send channels, cubase has Send FX Tracks & Group tracks (output goes track->group->master), logic has send fx & groups also i believe, as would protools.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i meant like all mixer tracks being potential sends? or is that what ur saying? my lingoz aren't up to scratch.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

probably a dumb question, but whats a bus? lol as in "assign each instrument within the kit to its own bus"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

probably a dumb question, but whats a bus? lol as in "assign each instrument within the kit to its own bus"

Think of a bus being, well, a bus that carries the sound to the final destination (ie the mixer output). Those you want can hop onboard, get a little special treatment along the way, and meet up with everyone else at the party still on time.

Great huh?!  :;)

Now say you were mixing a live band, with separate channels for the drum kit bits and pieces (eg. kick, snare, hat, upper toms, lower toms, crash, ride etc.). Now that's a lot of faders to manage, not to mention a nightmare to apply a global effect to. So to make life easier, the outputs for each of the channels can be routed to a separate (stereo) bus, complete with its own volume control at another point along the mixer, and inserts for effects.

Suddenly what was once more than handful is now contained within 1 or 2 (for stereo) 'sub group' channels.

Are you with me?

The same could be applied to the 3 channels for the backing singers, bussed together and placing them all on another sub group.

Or the 3 synths from the keyboard player on their own bus group.

Or a mix of the bass and drums together for a compression effect on another bus.

The output of the sub groups then blended together to form the main mix (and mixed in with those sounds that weren't 'sub grouped').

It's so much easier to manage a 24+ track session when it's contained to, say, 5 or 6 mono/stereo sub groups (with a mix of mono and stereo). One just needs to be wary of how send effects are managed. If you pull down the volume of, say, the drum group, the individual reverbs/delays are still sending from the individual parts, and therefore can easily disrupt the dry (unaffected) and wet (full effects) balance.

Speaking of sends, an effects send is also a bus. Here are several channels that can feed a single path to a destination. Effect sends aren't typically referred to as 'send busses' on a physical mixing desk, however, it's handy to know the terminology as that's exactly how some DAWs apply them (eg. Pro Tools).

Any clearer yet? ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Clear as day!! I had a feeling a bus was a bus lol. i thought about the theory that maybe a 'bus' is like a real bus that takes something somewhere ie sound somewhere else.. and i was kinda right haha

thanks!!

dunno what id do with u dudes

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0