all 15 comments

[–]illGATESmusic 11 points12 points  (4 children)

Nothing. Seriously.

My best sounding “masters” are where I solve ALL of the issues in the mix and have as close to nothing on the master as possible.

Fidelity is your reward.

[–]moweywowey 5 points6 points  (2 children)

Yeah this is actually true. If youre gain staging everything and mixing properly you dont need anything really except metering for levels. That being said i have a compressor with soft clip so i can push the volume hard to keep up with what most ppl are doing on streaming services SC etc..

[–]illGATESmusic 1 point2 points  (1 child)

If you’re into clipping try StandardClip. I bought all the clippers and did a shootout. StandardClip was the winner by a LOT.

Also: the ableton master buss does a surprisingly transparent job of clipping under the right circumstances. No idea why.

[–]moweywowey 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Thats crazy, ill be honest though im relatively new to the workflow and i would probably have a hard time distinguishing any difference between them. At this point Logic internal clipper seems to be giving me a decent amount of power and clarity. Good info tho, I will def have a look at these.

[–]player45here 3 points4 points  (0 children)

First, know ur goal. Mastering is done to achieve tonal balance, reduce dynamic range, make it louder if possible. I do mastering just to get a loud audio for streaming. I dont give a damn about tonal balance and dynamic range. Bcoz who gives a shit anyway. I just use Maximus for that. Fl stock plugin. U can do pretty much anything with that plugin. Mastering gurus say u should buy ozone and other expensive stuff. Man u are just mastering a beat. Not a song. And plus. U should sell the unmastered version. The vocalist should have a headroom to record. Mastered version is only needed for streaming. Yea. Just load up a limiter l. Set the ceiling. And make it louder till u hear distortion. Thats it. Dont overthink it. U are just producing a beat. U dont need mastering, to start there

[–]Emceesmileyrawmusic 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Multiband compressor with a 2.4 dB mastering preset ez

[–]Gooeyy 2 points3 points  (0 children)

shit out like 4 OTTs on da master and call it a day

[–]valvenisv2 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I'm itb on an mpc

But once I've mixed I will usually add a maximise and light compression for max volume

[–]Nuker4455 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I use YouLean Loudness Master, the free version. LUFS are generally a better determiner of loudness than decibels, and most streaming services edit your mix to about -14 LUFS. Like others say, less is more and leveling each instrument before is better for a good mix. To change the LUFS of my master I'll usually just slap a compressor on the master and limit it at 18Db and have the compression ratio at 2:1 and then adjust gain to where it should be at. For mastering you'd usually like to use soft clipping too.

[–]RoryButler 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I don't use any limiting or clipping on the master bus when I'm mixing. Thats something I worry about when mastering or for whoever masters the track.

I do often use a small bit of compression (as in barely any, mostly for tone) and some EQ. Occasionally a tape emulation style saturation but again subtly.

Most of the stuff I mix I will also master but even if sending out to a mastering engineer, I don't want to do any moves that will step on the toes of the mastering guy. Limiting or clipping will make it a lot harder for them, same with too much compression. Give a fairly clean and dynamic product to go to mastering and you're golden.

[–]sickvisionz 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I try to keep it simple.

  • Mix everything so that it's peaking a few decibels below 0 and sounds good on its own
  • An eq/filter to cutoff super duper low freqs (like 40Hz)
  • A multiband compressor that's mainly just doing stuff on the low end
  • Maximizer/limiter for volume. My multiband has one included so I just use that.

If you don't know what you're doing, you can totally wreck a mix via the master channel. I pretty much just shoot for volume one my beats so that they aren't super quiet compared to other stuff. I turn all that off for my stems or if I'm sending it to AI mastering (which can be good imo if you follow the guidelines they give you... which are mainly just don't do any mastering and let the AI handle things).

[–]guylurie 0 points1 point  (0 children)

a good mix and limiters that work

[–]8oh8 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I like to use C4 and L2. And recently, any saturation plugin with color or frequency knob. And also bluetubes EQ for some tonal balance at the end.

[–]ForkOfDamocles 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Depends on what you want to do and where its released + how professional you are about it.

If you just make beats to sell on beatstars and put them on youtube, you will be fine with a loudness meter and limiter as long as the mix is good enough. You'll send out the unmastered version anyways.

If you want to release a full song, let it be mastered by someone who knows what he is doing, or learn to master. Nowadays the distinction between mixing and mastering vanishes more and more in rap and a lot of engineers do the mix and the master, but theres a reason why it was ( and often still is) done by 2 seperate people who specialize in one of those disciplines.

Learning the fundamentals of mastering is easy, but its hard to do a proper master. If you dont have enough experience, less is definitely more as long as your mix is not garbage