Online Mastering: How to get your Mix ready in the most effective way possible
There are a few measures to take when getting your Mix ready for the Audio Mastering. It's very important to know how to set and send your Mix to get the best possible sound. In this article we'll give you some tips to get a perfect Online Mastering.
1. Get Rid of possible Noises
Before exporting your Mix, you should get rid of every possible source of noises, clicks and pops in the various instruments. Make sure to always Fade In and Fade Out every audio track and get rid of all the silences so that you don't get unwanted rustles, that would get additionally accentuated with the Compression and Limiting, becoming too audible and annoying.
2. Keep your Mix Clean and Dynamic.
Too much compressing and smothering of the dynamics in your Mix can make it impossible to get a good Mastering. We always recommend to turn off any Plugin on the Mix Bus before you send it to us, so that we have enough room to work. If you believe your interventions on the Mix Bus to be essential, tell us so when you're sending it, and possibly send us the same Mix with and without what you did on the Mastering Chain.
3. Keep an eye on the Levels
A good Mix should have the maximum peak at no more than -3dBFS, or even better at -6dBFS, and there should never be a Limiter managing peaks. The process of managing peaks and the final volume is to be left to the Mastering Engineer, so that once the process is complete it can be applied and adapted to the distribution format.
4. Files Format
Before you send us your work, make sure to keep the Mix at the Maximum Possible Quality, aka a format without compression (like .WAV or .AIFF). Try to avoid any conversion if not strictly necessary: it's important that when you're exporting your mix to get it Mastered you keep the same format of your session: es. if your session is set at 48khz and 24 bit, you should export the file at 48khz and 24 bit, and so forth.
5. Reference Track
If you already have an idea of the kind of Sound you want, send us a reference track of an artist you like. This will help us understand what could be the issues in your Mix and how to improve them to get an Online Mastering you're satisfied with.