What gear to buy to get started

Discussion in 'Mastering' started by jnwry, May 28, 2010.

  1. jnwry

    jnwry Guest

    I'm currently living in Bolivia, South America and am about to get started with a mastering studio. What gear would be the number one purchase for mastering? Please no plugins. Thanks very much.
  2. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Well-Known Member

    Monitoring and (PROPER) room treatments. Period. No exceptions. Nothing else even comes close to the importance of the accuracy and consistency of your monitoring chain (and they will only ever be as accurate and consistent as the space they're in). Every single sonic decision you make will be based on how your monitoring chain interfaces with your brain.
  3. WaltzMastering

    WaltzMastering Active Member

    +1 - Part of the monitoring involves a great (transparent) DA. Next in order of importance is the DA-AD conversion you choose for your analog insert/s, followed by the choices you make for your outboard gear.
  4. jnwry

    jnwry Guest

    Massive Mastering,
    Thanks - it seems over the years I am coming to that conclusion in the recording process as well. My recording studio is 14X5.5 meters but the control room is only 3X3. Is this room going to allow me to properly treat acousticaly?
    I'm using MOTU2408mkIII for my AD and DA conversion. Is this ok?

    Once I'm to the point of achieving a good acoustic balance in the room, where do I go from there?
  5. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Well-Known Member

    3x3 is going to be such an acoustical nightmare that you won't physically have room for all the broadband trapping required to make it even close to reasonable. Not for mixing, certainly not for mastering. Maybe for editing and post work... Maybe.

    IMO/E, YMMV (but not by much - I guarantee it), etc., etc., yada, yada.

    (EDIT) Rough mode calculations - 57.5, 115, 172 and 230Hz *all* colliding on *at least* two axis (depending on the height of the space - if it's 3m high, you have the perfect storm). Anything louder than battery-operated AM radio is going to be a bad situation.
  6. WaltzMastering

    WaltzMastering Active Member

    I'm not familiar with the MOTU2408mkIII but from just taking a quick look at it online I can see that the signal to noise ratio does not spec out as well as what you would see in a typical mastering room and don't know of any dedicated mastering engineers using the MOTU for their conversion.

    The conversion is one of the most important things to look at after room and monitors, so it might be worth an upgrade. The conversion is really the window that provides the clarity for all you decision making. If the window is veiled all the decisions that are made will be skewed.

    After Monitors, room, daad / da, monitor controller and amps are taken care of the next move would be to look into some out board comps. The Cranesong STC8 and Manley Vari-mu are both popular units to maybe look into.

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