Mastering exercise for everybody !

LarryQualm2

Chuck
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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.

It should have not gone over -0.01 db per the setting on the limiter. There may have been some clipping on one of the buss tracks though. Funny when you play stuff back. Seems the ears become paralyzed from the fatigue. This is all ITB too, using the .wav that Marco supplied. I used the 48K version. Last I was doing this we were trying to still get things real loud. That's changes some in some areas, so I need to mellow out a bit. Also, real hard hitting transients that are real weighty sound bad too.
 

bouldersound

Real guitars are for old people.
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It should have not gone over -0.01 db per the setting on the limiter.
There's a difference between digital peak and True Peak. True Peak simulates how the waveform is reconstructed in the DAC. You can have a digital value that is under 0dBFS but which goes over 0dBFS once reconstructed into an analog signal. Those will clip many D/A converters.
 

LarryQualm2

Chuck
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Location
Metro-Detroit, MI
I can't believe it! All my posts were mastered in mono!! I was wondering why they all sounded mono ...until I bumped a cord. Wow, what a difference.

This should sound better:



When mastering in stereo it's better to hear in stereo. Lol

Update 1/28: I noticed that one is still "crooked". Thanks for not laughing at me. (in public. Lol)

 

LarryQualm2

Chuck
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Location
Metro-Detroit, MI
There's a difference between digital peak and True Peak. True Peak simulates how the waveform is reconstructed in the DAC. You can have a digital value that is under 0dBFS but which goes over 0dBFS once reconstructed into an analog signal. Those will clip many D/A converters.

Thanks. There's a term for that, but I forget what it is. Something about the square state of a byte and the rounded inflection point of the analog signal. It's a rounding sort of issue. I think my Orpheus handles this case.

"Inter-Sample Peaks"
 

audiokid

Chris
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Nanaimo BC, Canada
That was excellent, Marco. Really fun and also a well balanced way to show individual versions without insulting or bloating each version. Thanks for the mention of our community as well.
 

audiokid

Chris
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Nanaimo BC, Canada
I tried it using my TV speakers and the HDMI interface, seemed like a good test for me. :cool: I wouldn't mind doing it again knowing my TV speakers lack top end and accentuate bass. lol I found my mix very bright and lacking bass in your video.

Other than good ears... good mastering is knowing our room and speakers.

Looking forward to more of these.
 

Davedog

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Location
Pacific NW
I tried it using my TV speakers and the HDMI interface, seemed like a good test for me. :cool: I wouldn't mind doing it again knowing my TV speakers lack top end and accentuate bass. lol I found my mix very bright and lacking bass in your video.

Other than good ears... good mastering is knowing our room and speakers.

Looking forward to more of these.
I thought your take had amazing clarity considering you were using your TV. LOL!
 

kmetal

Kyle P. Gushue
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Location
Boston, Massachusetts
I tried it using my TV speakers and the HDMI interface, seemed like a good test for me. :cool: I wouldn't mind doing it again knowing my TV speakers lack top end and accentuate bass. lol I found my mix very bright and lacking bass in your video.

Other than good ears... good mastering is knowing our room and speakers.

Looking forward to more of these.
You can always run some pink noise and use an RTA app on phone/tablet or REW on your computer ( it has RTA) to get a look at what your speakers are doing.
 

LarryQualm2

Chuck
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Location
Metro-Detroit, MI
Hey Gang !!

I just posted my video on which I compare the mastering you shared.. I only took the last one poste (for those who posted more than one version) to avoid having a too long video.

Let me know what you think..
Do you hear differences that I missed ?


Very nice, PC. Very professionally presented. Thanks for all you've done regarding this thread.

(y)
 

Boswell

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UK
@pcrecord I was impressed by the way you handled the whole project - well done, Marco!

I tried it using my TV speakers and the HDMI interface, seemed like a good test for me. :cool: I wouldn't mind doing it again knowing my TV speakers lack top end and accentuate bass. lol I found my mix very bright and lacking bass in your video.
It's probable that mixing using the TV as a monitor made the sound a bit unbalanced - great picture though!
 

audiokid

Chris
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Location
Nanaimo BC, Canada
@pcrecord @Thomas W. Bethel
I noticed two things you focused on in your video summary which I think make interesting conversation. I've invited Thomas as well cause it's always fun getting Tom involved in these topics too!
  1. When mastering, how much do mastering engineers rely on the visual aspect of the wave (spectral editing) to determine how it sounds? If you guys could explain more about the visual process, that would be really interesting!
  2. Marco, when you ran through all the examples, we heard those samples based on what your room reference sounded like in a video. I thought that was interesting which adds more discussion on this! How accurate is your room as well? Question: How much would this represent an accurate truth to each sample? (I can see all the participants rethinking how they did their master based on what it sounded like in your video).:unsure: Have you though about expanding on this for future discussion or topics?
One of the reasons I participated in this was to add a completely none traditional approach to mastering, thus... Why I chose to use TV speakers and the HDMI out from a laptop. I mean... think about how many people ask year after year if they can master something on headphones, in a closet, in a small room, on a laptop, bad room acoustics etc etc etc. (cheap speakers, bad acoustics make it impossible to mix or master because ...?)

I think this would make a good video for you next time :)
 

Davedog

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2001
Location
Pacific NW
One of the reasons I participated in this was to add a completely none traditional approach to mastering, thus... Why I chose to use TV speakers and the HDMI out from a laptop. I mean... think about how many people ask year after year if they can master something on headphones, in a closet, in a small room, on a laptop, bad room acoustics etc etc etc. (cheap speakers, bad acoustics make it impossible to mix or master because ...?)
Now we're talking.
 
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