Mastering exercise for everybody !

LarryQualm2

Chuck
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Mar 6, 2015
Location
Metro-Detroit, MI
PC, are we allowed to adjust or is this a set-in-stone "competition" sort of thing? I'm thinking this is open in the sense of it being more of an exercise open to "corrections"? I wouldn't recommend sporadically littering the thread ...maybe add versions to our original post?
 

pcrecord

Quality recording seeker !
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Feb 21, 2013
Location
Quebec, Canada
PC, are we allowed to adjust or is this a set-in-stone "competition" sort of thing? I'm thinking this is open in the sense of it being more of an exercise open to "corrections"? I wouldn't recommend sporadically littering the thread ...maybe add versions to our original post?
You are allowed to do anything, of course, the subject is mastering, I'd be surprised to receive a remix with different groove and all.. but having fun while learning is the goal here.. ;)
 

LarryQualm2

Chuck
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Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Metro-Detroit, MI
You are allowed to do anything, of course, the subject is mastering, I'd be surprised to receive a remix with different groove and all.. but having fun while learning is the goal here.. ;)

Nooooooo, not your mix! I'd f that up for sure! :giggle:

This, I mean:



I'll add it as a second version to my op too.

I'm also looking to do the best version I can. Not in a competitive way either, and it could be based off what someone else has done. So, I kinda have a side initiative going on here too. :)
 

audiokid

Chris
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Mar 20, 2000
Location
Nanaimo BC, Canada
Here's my quick swipe at it. I didn't master for maximum loudness, I targeted -14dBLUFS with 1dB of true peak headroom.

WAV file here:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1x9kAynTAWlxSS9UvX_973YSdO5z9Q46E/view?usp=sharing

MP3 file here:
View attachment 19994
Nice work. You've tackled the harsh sss on the vox really well.

This is precisely why I couldn't be a mastering engineer. If I can't go back into a mix to fix the problematic spot without effecting everything else in the overall track ... its a constant loosing battle to me.

If I had more time I would have tried to sidechain an EQ on the sss. Maybe that would be the trick. I'd love to hear how you tackled those sss?

Again, really nice work, boulder
 

bouldersound

Real guitars are for old people.
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Jan 23, 2010
Location
Boulder, Colorado
Nice work. You've tackled the harsh sss on the vox really well.

This is precisely why I couldn't be a mastering engineer. If I can't go back into a mix to fix the problematic spot without effecting everything else in the overall track ... its a constant loosing battle to me.

If I had more time I would have tried to sidechain an EQ on the sss. Maybe that would be the trick. I'd love to hear how you tackled those sss?

Again, really nice work, boulder

Thanks. While I don't automatically apply multi-band compression, I'll do it if I feel it's worthwhile. In this case what I used was a little different, ReaFIR in Compressor mode. I suppose you'd call it spectral compression. It doesn't compress predefined frequency bands, the frequencies that are compressed are dictated by what actually exceeds the threshold. The threshold itself is a frequency curve.

This is what I do on my home system. When at other studios I might use a dedicated de-esser, multi-band compression or putting an eq on a compressor's side chain.

ReaFIR de-esser You and Me master.png
 

DogsoverLava

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Jun 21, 2014
Location
Vancouver
On this I too felt challenged by not having access to the mix, but I think that this itself is part of the challenge and highlights what mastering is. I didn't take a too technical approach to things - I had three major objectives. 1 - Warm it up a bit. 2 - Tame some of the sibalince and some of the consonant sounds while leaving enough in for the overall vocal effect (thinking a lot of this was done intentionally. 3 - Tame some of the dynamics that made this pop a little too brightly as a mix for me - so some compression where appropriate but generally keeping the range.

I don't have a large enough toolkit or vocabulary for Mastering - I generally EQ, compress/limit while doing most of the heavy lifting in the mix process. Looking to learn more. (and keep the adage that it must be and remain musical, and adjustments must first add to the musicality of the song.)

 

Davedog

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Joined
Dec 10, 2001
Location
Pacific NW
Pre-mastering prep. I liked the mix enough not to mess with it. The song has an Ian Hunter/Mick Ronson vibe to it with a touch of Peter Gabriel. I didn't try and bring up the levels to mastering levels but simply added the few things I generally use to prep a track to go to the mastering engineer I usually use.
 

LarryQualm2

Chuck
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Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Metro-Detroit, MI
FWIW I did another. Tried to focus on a few weak spots. Remove some sharpness, add more air - more airy transparent compression, Bring the blast down some.



(y)
 

bouldersound

Real guitars are for old people.
Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2010
Location
Boulder, Colorado
FWIW I did another. Tried to focus on a few weak spots. Remove some sharpness, add more air - more airy transparent compression, Bring the blast down some.

View attachment 20039

(y)
It's quite loud (-9dBLUFS, which I think is normal for a CD master). I was noticing on my system that the highs seemed rather harsh, perhaps distorted. My LUFS meter showed a True Peak level of +1dBFS. I turned the gain down a few dB in my DAW and the harshness went away and the master sounded good. As I understand it, some converters don't have headroom built in to accommodate waveforms that reconstruct with levels above 0dBFS, so they distort. If you're mixing through a DAC that does have the headroom, you might not hear distortion that other listeners hear. Also, compressed formats like mp3 can raise the True Peak level slightly. That's why I always leave a full 1dB of headroom.
 

LarryQualm2

Chuck
Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 6, 2015
Location
Metro-Detroit, MI
It's quite loud (-9dBLUFS, which I think is normal for a CD master). I was noticing on my system that the highs seemed rather harsh, perhaps distorted. My LUFS meter showed a True Peak level of +1dBFS. I turned the gain down a few dB in my DAW and the harshness went away and the master sounded good. As I understand it, some converters don't have headroom built in to accommodate waveforms that reconstruct with levels above 0dBFS, so they distort. If you're mixing through a DAC that does have the headroom, you might not hear distortion that other listeners hear. Also, compressed formats like mp3 can raise the True Peak level slightly. That's why I always leave a full 1dB of headroom.

Thanks man. I'll take a look and tell ya. Listening back, to me it's not so harsh ...as in buzz-saw high mids ..it's just too loud there. Back in a bit. :)
 
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