Mastering can be a mystery to the uninitiated. Sometimes, the difference between mastered mixes and the originals are subtle and discernable only to the discriminating ear. In other cases, mastering can make a radical difference in volume, presence, and overall clarity. As audio physicians we have taken our own Hippocratic Oath, “First, do no harm”. Sometimes, the least amount of processing is the best.
As you can see by our gear list we have an analog/digital hybrid studio. “In-the-box” digital mixes will often benefit from being processed through our API DSM mixer, A-Designs “Hammer” tube EQ and Neve Portico Compressor. If necessary, we can then employ any of our Waves Mastering Plug-Ins, including the Linear Phase EQ, Linear Phase MultiBand Compressor, and L3 Ultramaximizer to fine tune your tracks and bring the levels into an appropriate area for their musical genre. Creative fader moves to enhance the dynamic range within a track are sometimes required or desired. Subtle effects may be employed such as small amounts of reverb, parallel compression, spatializing, etc. Ultimately, our approach will be completely dependent on your musical style and tastes.
The best type of files to create for mastering are 24bit, non-interleaved WAV. We suggest you create your mixes at the same sample rate that you recorded your basic tracks. For example, if you recorded at 44.1, bounce down your mixes at 44.1k without converting or dithering.
Our current mastering fees are: $15 per minute for the first 15 minutes of recorded material and $10 for every minute of recorded material after that. An hour of recorded material, for instance, would cost $675 to master. Any revisions you want to make will cost $25 per song.