Hi there, this is my first post on this site because I couldn't seem to find many people talking about this. I just finished recording a record and mixing it on Logic & a Mackie Mixer, etc. Record's all done from that point and now I need to send it off to some guys for mastering, but I was curious if I could put the mixed record on a USB or hard drive for sending? The record is over 135 minutes long meaning they don't fit on the typical Taiyo Yuden CD-R. Any help or comments would be much appreciated, as I don't know much about these things. Thanks! xx
There's no reason you can't send it on two separate (but clearly marked #1 & #2) discs, but either removable storage device should be perfectly acceptable. I'd contact the mastering house of your choice and ask if they have a preference. Since it doesn't seem like you want to put out a double-album in CD form, I am assuming you'll be offering the album in download format only. In any case, I'd still ask for physical CDs of the masters - if for nothing more than to keep them as untouched archival copies.
On a side note, have you considered breaking this up into two albums? If the first one gets any traction, you've got the second one ready to go as soon as the first starts to cool off.
Best of luck with your release!
Sending it to a mastering house is the easy bit - you send it as 24-bit .bwav files. Since the files are numbers and not audio, you can break them up to fit over a number of data CDs as long as you include a short file of instructions on how to re-assemble the sections.
The difficult bit is deciding the format for distribution or sale of the physical mastered copies, as this may affect the parameters for mastering. I suggest you look at DVD-A, which gives you about 10 times the play length of a standard CD, or many options for surround sound. This would mean that it could be played by anyone with a DVD-Audio player or by most people with a computer.
Talking of DVDs, dvdhawk has just posted while I was typing the above, and he makes the very good suggestion that you look at on-line distribution or at streaming sales.