FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is the difference between mixing and mastering?
Mastering is the final step to ensure all tracks will sound sonically similar and coherent on the album. Mastering will also help with reproducible playback on a variety of different playback systems (ear buds, car system, club PA, etc.). Mastering also makes your music louder, radio ready, and more 3-dimensional and impactful. Mastering helps to gel the instruments together to make a song that has movement without compromising its sonic integrity.
How long does it take to mix or master a song?
Mastering usually takes less time with song turn around time around 1-3 days and albums usually taking less than 5 days.
Can I hear a sample of my music mixed or mastered?
Will you remix my song for free if I didn't like the mix or master?
Will you Auto-Tune my vocals?
What is the difference between mixing and post production?
Post production: I create new sounds or effects (like Auto-Tune or adding keys strings), drum replacement, or song arrangement changes) that weren’t included in the submitted audio files.
What is a stem?
All stems should start from the exactly same starting point (beginning of the song) and finish at the end of the song – EVEN if it is just silence! This is very important since we will not be able to align the stems if they don’t all start at EXACTLY THE SAME SPOT.
How do I prepare my song for mixing or mastering?
- Export in an uncompressed file format (.wav or .aiff) at the sample rate and bit depth you produced your music.
- Leave silence (about 4-6 bars or around 5 sec) before and after the track.
- Remove any effects on the main output bus (or upload two versions – one with the effects and one without).
- Make sure there is at least -3 dbfs of headroom (-6 dbfs preferred!).
- Turn off “Normalization” and Dithering” when exporting the mix or stems for mastering. For visual reference, your stems should look like the “Good” image below:
What are the file requirements to meet the specifications for "Mastered for iTunes"?
Should I keep plugins or effects on the stems or mixes?
Typically, under no circumstances should you submit mixes for mastering with any effects on the output bus on your DAW as this will reduce the available headroom in the song making it very difficult to master. If you like the sound with effects on the output bus, please mix down both versions and upload them both. Adjust the peak audio signal to no higher than -3 dbfs (-6 dbfs perferred!) on the output bus.
What types of files do you support for mixing and mastering?
.wav .ogg .flac .aiff
We do not recommend sending .mp3s to be mixed or mastered since their quality has been greatly reduced, however, great results may still be obtained.
Typically stereo files are recorded with a sampling frequency of 44.1 kHz at 24 bits. Try to maintain this standard rate if possible. Higher sampling rates can be mixed and mastered as well (48, 88.2, 96, even 192 kHz), but ensure the stems or mix has been exported at the same sampling rate and bit depth it was recorded at. For example, if you used 24 bit samples at 48 kHz, please export at those settings to an uncompressed file format.
How do I export stems from my digital audio workstation (DAW)?
How do I organize my files for uploading?
Now all you have to do is create a .zip file of your artist folder and upload it. For a mac, right click on the folder and choose “Compress”. On a PC, right click on the folder and choose “Send to” then pick “Compressed (zipped) folder”.
If all else fails, send us an e-mail on the contact page and we will help you out!