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PREPARING AND SUBMITTING TRACKS FOR MASTERING
Get the best mix you can and avoid any processing purely for the sake of loudness.
Allow at least 3dB of headroom and ensure there is no clipping.
WAV or AIFF
Min 16bit, 44.1kHz
Include detailed instructions and all relevant data.
Send all mixes, demos, references and codes in a ZIP package via WeTransfer.
Get your tracks sounding as good as you possibly can before handing them over. Check them on a variety of playback systems and reference them against tracks that you like (preferably at the same subjective level).
If mix bus processing (such as mixing into a compressor) is part of your sound, then by all means use it, but please let me know what you have used. It may be helpful to send two versions of a mix - with and without bus processing - to avoid any problems.
Allowing 3-4dB of headroom (maximum peak -3dB below OdBFS) will assist in ensuring a high quality master (it's not a big deal if you haven't). Make sure your exported audio file is not clipping and, for maximum quality, check all individual track and plugin meters for clipping prior to final mixdown. Don't worry about your mix being quiet, I will do my best to match your preferences in terms of loudness and a clean and dynamic mix helps maximise impact more than a loud one.
File format: WAV or AIFF (MP3 or other lossy formats should only be sent if nothing else is available).
Resolution: minimum 16bit, 44.1kHz. 24bit, 88.2kHz is ideal.
When exporting from a DAW, it is best to export at 24bit and at the sample rate the audio was recorded in. Don't resample your audio after mixdown.
File names: the best way to name files to minimise confusion is Track # - Artist - Song Title (e.g. 01 - Led Zeppelin - Immigrant Song).
Leave a 2 second gap (silence) at the start and end of the audio to ensure nothing gets cut (e.g. by latency correction in some software).
Leave any fades or edits for mastering. You can send detailed instructions about where you want fades to start and finish and by all means send a demo audio file (clearly labelled) with the fades done as you like them.
Keep your own backup copies of all files sent.
Notes and Instructions
If you would like metadata encoded with your audio, please provide a clearly typed overview of all relevant information: artist, album title, song titles, ISRC codes, id3 information, CD text etc.
If the album includes fades or crossfades or you have specific track spacing preferences, please provide as much informationas possible. An example audio file of the whole album sequenced the way you want it can be helpful.
It's also helpful if you can point out anything specific about the songs you'd like addressed that you couldn't accomplish in the mixing stage.
Making a ZIP package for your files is recommended to protect the audio from errors during transfer. A ZIP gives a clear error message for a damaged file.
For PC, simply create a folder for all of your files, then RIGHT CLICK the folder and select SEND TO -> COMPRESSED (ZIPPED) FOLDER.
For MAC, simply create a folder for all of your files, then RIGHT CLICK the folder and select COMPRESS ITEMS.
Upload the ZIP package to WeTransfer via the UPLOAD link on the Order Mastering form.
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