In what order do I work?

Discussion in 'Mastering' started by WhenBroken_IsEasilyFixed, Jan 17, 2005.

  1. Using nuendo..

    Normalize? then mix? then mixdown(bounce)? then start with mastering like deEsser? Magneto? Multiband Compressor? on the whole track? or do you master each track by itself? or what?

    any help would be great.
    Thank you.
  2. I was referring to mastering BTW. over all for final product.
  3. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Well-Known Member

    Every track is its own entity. You do what that particular track "asks for."

    If you don't know what it's asking for, experiment until you can hear it.

    There are no quick fixes and certainly no short answers.
  4. Well i understand having to listen it out and pan out the problems but i was wondering if there was a set path when it comes to mastering you Final Stereo track. like get all say 24 tracks mixed well with you added effects and compression, then you bounce down to two stereo tracks. then what do you do with that final, i have heard things about adding a compressor over the whole thing, or normalize the final, or somthing about a light reverb over the whole mix, thats was kinda my angle of the question.
  5. LittleDogAudio

    LittleDogAudio Active Member

    I would suggest that you do Not normalize.
    All this does is reduce the dynamic range and will negetively effect the final mastering job.

    If you are doing the mastering yourself (not a great idea), then maybe use a look-ahead limiter to boost the over-all operating level. But, it is better to have a slightly quieter output, then to squeeze the crap out if the program just to make it hot.

    A good mastering engineer will create a "hot" level AND keep the musical dynamics intact.

  6. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    Normalizing doesn't change the dynamic range, all it does is recalculate the samples to the highest bit. It doesn't alter the relationship within them. Really doesn't do anything except introduce a variable that might be heard like truncating without dither. So it's best just to leave that out. A limiter on the other hand will reduce the dynamic range. And by doing that, enables you to raise the overall level. Best bet, get your mix sounding as good as you can without any trickery. Don't normalize individual tracks, no point. If you are working at 24 bit, that's 144db of dynamic range, Average rock song had about 20db and that's if it's dymanic. I would just concentrate on one thing at a time. First record the tracks as best you can, then mix as best you can. That will keep you busy enough for a lifetime.
  7. LittleDogAudio

    LittleDogAudio Active Member

    I guess what I meant to say is that normalizing will effect the way a mastering engineer can manipulate the dynamics.
    I am always warned by my mastering guy to never, ever normalize my mixes. He says that it hand-cuffs his ability to get the best over-all final results.

    You are right though, I mis-spoke. Normalizing just recalculates the signal.

  8. Reggie

    Reggie Well-Known Member

    YOU may do whatever you like. But I'm fairly certain a mastering engineer does none of this.
  9. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    Normalizing shouldn't handcuff a ME's ability to do anything unless he's working from a source that he's not able to adjust the output volume of. All it basically is, is a volume ride up to the highest bit. All a ME has to do to create more headroom, is ride the fader down. Again, there is a lot of calculations going on just to get back to where you started. It's not like analog where you get a different sound if you print hotter. In general, the less amount of number crunching a computer has to do is better, IMO. Don't mean to nit pick, just want to make sure he understands what normalizing is and the fact that there is no benifit to it.

    Now limiting is a whole different story. If a waveform is distorted by limiting or hard compressing, then it totally handcuffs a ME. It's like bending the frame of your car, you can fix it up and make it look a little nicer but it's never going to drive the same.

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