Mastering help needed!!!

Discussion in 'Mastering' started by therecordingart, Aug 10, 2004.

  1. therecordingart

    therecordingart Well-Known Member

    Jul 28, 2004
    I'm a newbie to recording (about 2 years under my belt w/o any school), and I rely on a lot of reading, trial/error, and trying to use my ears the best I can. Now that I'm understanding the roots, and learning what it takes to record a decent tune, I'd like to start learning what mastering really is. I know that it is a completely different animal from recording, and I respect it as such, but I'd like to start learning what it is/what is involved in a mastering session.

    Does anyone have any good books, sites, or resources? I don't expect to become a self-proclaimed mastering engineer after reading a few articles, but I'd like to learn the basics on what mastering is. Also, I record a lot of local Chicago bands, and I'd like to find a place in the Chicagoland that is a reputable mastering facility....does anyone know of any that I can develop a working relationship with?

    Thanks in advance!

  2. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2002
    NYC New York
    Home Page:
    The best place to start is Bob Katz's mastering handbook. you can find it a he's also got a lot of great information on his website too.

    All I can say about mastering is... Just when you think you understand it, you've got about 5 more years to go. Just kidding, not. Every day I learn something new. I work on at least 5 projects a week and not a day goes by that I find myself learning something. Understanding the concept is one thing, but implementing it is another. It's about seeing the big picture and the smallest detail at the same time.

    There are many good ME's in chicago, just keep your ears open and do your research. You'll find the one that you like.
  3. carlisle

    carlisle Guest

    I believe John Scrip (Massive Mastering on this board) is in the Chicago area. Here is his web site:

    Yeah, get the Bob Katz book, but prepare to be slightly overwhelmed by the depth and detail of the information! I'm still spinning trying to get through it and soak it in.

    heres another link for some articles:

    (Dead Link Removed)

    and another:

    That should keep you busy for a while, and make you wonder where you're gonna come up with a big chunk of cash, not to mention experience! Its a lot to take in.

    Hope I haven't violated any rules by posting these links. Just trying to help. :)
  4. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Well-Known Member

    Jul 18, 2004
    Chicago area, IL, USA
    Home Page:
    Thank, carlisle! Art, stop on by the site.

    And yes, Bob Katz's "Mastering Audio" book is a great source of information. Not particularly on "mastering" and mastering techniques in general, but it's just good stuff, you know? Every chapter you go through will make you a better engineer in one way or another.
  5. kinetic

    kinetic Guest

    Couldn't agree more about Bob Katz' book. For those new to mastering (or horror upon horror having a go for themselves even if it is in the quest to learn more) another great tool is the HarBal harmonic balancer. I use the latter not so much to process my mixes, but to show me where there are problems that I can't necessarily hear because of the room/speakers etc.

    Ever since reading Bob's book, and using HarBal, I have become so much more critical and sensitive to levels, frequency response of elements of the mix etc etc and I'm happy to say that my mixes subjectively have never sounded so good. You can't go wrong with these two products

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