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  • Below are links to some tracks (all of them originally generated with software) that I've used SoundCloud mastering for.   I don't perceive that it makes much of a difference, but since I have a paid SoundCloud account for other reasons which gives me three free remasters a month, I use it sometimes.

    SoundCloud Serbian Suite

    SoundCloud Three Impressions of Winter for Clarinet and Piano

    SoundCloud Janed Ar Wern

  • I once experemented with Landr. It's ok for anyone who doesn't want to try their own mastering but I would say, not as good as having the tools to do it yourself.

    There are diffeent characters to different masters and many dedicated mastering programs have presets that I think are better than online mastering.

    IK Multimedia's TRacks is my favorite. I also occasionally use Izotope's Ozone 9. Both of those programs have presets superior to online mastering that can be catered to a certain type of mix.IK Multimedia also makes a mastering plugin based on the Lurrsen mastering console. You don't need much prior mixing knowledge to use it.

    For those who don't want to invest in such programs and want something that is pretty good without all the hassle, either of those programs online programs would be ok. 

    Thank goodness for options right?

    • Hi Tim, good to see you here.  As far as mastering goes, as I understand it, the main point is to prepare a recording for delivery to its intended market, whether it's a dance club or on-line streaming or the CF forum, or any of many other places?  So each venue has different requirements, CD's are different than Spotify etc.  And each artist has different musical requirements as well as tastes and preferences. So how can mastering ever be a one-size-fits-all process?  So even if I like what SoundCloud did to one of my pieces there's no guarantee I'll like what they do with something else?  And then there's that thing they do to all up-loads (compression?), how does that figure in? 

      You get good sounds, just wanted to get your thoughts on all this.

       

      • Good to hear from you as well Ingo. I believe there are different workflows that people tend to develop over time when it comes to mixing and mastering. I guess a person who only mixes one type or genre can lock that in even more. My music and my mixes are all over the place, I mean I mixed a song about the devil and then some mellow stuff over on another YouTube channel I have that mainly caters to hymns. There is a HUGE difference between mixing and mastering for those tow different types! I didn't post the prog rock  devil song here because of the type of person that seems to come here.I didn't expect it would be very well recieved ;)

        I guess I can only speak for how I like to work. Most of that developed over time through a combination of trial and error and some study into what works in terms of levels and mix for different genre.I usually mix my tracks in the -6 db range for background and higher for front tracks which could be as high as -2db. My mix is sometimes a higher level coming off of my DAW master output. I think -6 db is recommended going to master and I often find my mix at just under 0db going to master or maybe -2 to -4 db. I don't master in my DAW. I export to a separate file and load the track into either TRacks or Ozone 9. All depending I will either use a preset or make a few tweaks. I shoot for a clean minimally limited master that still pushes the max LUFS. Often a master will sound louder than it is actually going to be after uploading and processing, so I'm not shy about making sure my levels are up there without being too high.

        The thing about mastering some don't get is you need to have an accurate way to hear what they are going to hear, so I use ARC3 and Sonarworks for headphones. This yeilds a pretty goof representation of the way it's going to sound. I also use a very unscientific way to tell overall volume. I want it to be plenty loud enough without straining to hear it at 50% volume. When pushed above 50% I want to to be getting so loud that it's easy to make it too loud with pop or rock mixes. I find that with those mixes high passing the lower bass and dropping the mids in critical places will allow for a few more db of clean gain at master. For an orchestral mix it's a totally different technique. I pretty much use less of everything and go to master lower. 

        Sometimes staging gain using minimal amounts of compression and limiting is much better than attempting to get it all to happen in one stage. This is why I like to go from the DAW to dedicated mastering tools. That way I'm not attempting to do it all in the DAW. I will minimally limit in the DAW. I try to carve EQ before I go to master to remove all the mid range mud.

    • Hi

      I had a look at IK's T-Rack 5. Apparently I bought T-Rack way back in 2017 (I can't remember bbuying it) and when I logged into my IK account, which I haven't done in a few years, T-Rack 5 appeared as a free update so I've downloaded it. I have the Vienna suite pro plugins that came wirh VE Pro, problem is I've no idea how to use them so I guess I'll need to spend some time learning them.

      Thanks, Colin

      • Hey Collin, That;s fantastic!

        Let me know if you run into a snag or have any questions. I use TRacks stand alone. You may simply drag your audio track into it for mastering.You then set the directory to where you want the file to go and export.

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