Send data CD-R or 1/4" to be mastered?

Discussion in 'Mastering' started by cactus, Feb 8, 2004.

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  1. cactus

    cactus Guest

    I'm recording on Protools, then putting my final mix onto 1/4" tape.
    Assuming the Mastering House has both computer editing and 2-trk tape machine, should I take them a 1/4" tape or a CD with the stereo files on it and have them dump it to tape (cuz they might have a 1/2")?

    Just wondering what you guys might think.
  2. Bill Park

    Bill Park Guest

    Buy Bob Katz book, over at

    It pays to contact the rep house that you plan to use and see what they expect, and how they will handle it. I'd probably be trying to send out DDP, I'd least likely send out tape.

  3. Don Grossinger

    Don Grossinger Distinguished past mastering moderator Active Member

    Jan 16, 2002
    just north of NYC
    Home Page:
    I would want the 1/4" tape if that is what your mix is on. Just make sure to put tones on at the time of the mix (at the head of reel one, leadered, 30 sec each of 1k, 100hz, 50 hz, 10 Khz, & 15 Khz).

    Using analog tape is a creative decision & will give the project a "sound". Sending files & having the mastering house put it on analog sounds like an unnecessary complication, if you have access to a good machine available at the time of the mix.
  4. joe lambert

    joe lambert Distinguished Member

    Oct 17, 2001
    321 West 44th Street Suite 1001
    Home Page:
    I agree with Don. Make sure your 1/4" machine is properly aligned. Print your tones and print your mixes. Then make sure your working with a mastering engineer who has a high quality, well maintained machine. It's most likely going to be one tape machine with 2 different sets of heads.

    Some of my clients bring both. They print to tape and a DAW at the same time. We listen to both and decide which is best. Or they send me both, and ask me to listen and decide.

    As much as I love tape there are times when the machine was not properly set up or the mix hit the tape too hard and we end up using the files.

    As always it's a per project, per track decision.
    This is one reason to choose wisely who you use to master your record.

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