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WaterFall Studios

Mastering FAQ Page

Q. What does mastering do?

Mastering is the final stage of audio production for the purpose of optimizing a stereo recording bringing it to industry standards thus making it "radio ready". The actual process of mastering can vary from project to project depending on the original sound content and the final results desired. It usually involves for the most part, overall EQ, compression, limiting, loudness, enhancing, and sometimes some editing on the final stereo tracks.

Q. Why should I have my CD mastered?

So it can be competitive with what is out there. All professional albums are mastered. So to have a commercial industry standard CD that is radio ready, you should have mastering done.

Q. Why do you suggest sending in a reference CD?

The reference CD should be of a group or style of music that you like or sound similar to, or like the way it sounds. This will give us an idea of how you want your finished project to sound. So if you're a heavy metal band, don't send in a classical CD. The style of music does not necessarily have to be the same just as long as you like the sonic quality of the reference CD that should be fine.

Q. Will you keep the reference CD?

No, we will return it with the proof CD.

Q. What if I don't have a reference CD?

Then just send in comments on what you might be looking for. Like maybe "loud and in your face" or "warm and dynamic."

Q. How will the proof CD be different than the final master CDs that you send?

The proof CD will be exactly the same except for shortened versions and occasional test tones placed in each song. This way the test CD cannot be used as a master.

Q. Can mastering fix musical mistakes or remove distortion and excess reverb?

No, mastering cannot fix individual tracks after they have been mixed down.

Q. What formats do you accept?

We accept CD-Rs and audio CDs. Do not send your only copy, always keep a back up.

Q. How long does it take?

It can take one to four weeks, usually shorter, depending on the current work load. However, we strive to make it a 5-day turn-around.

Q. Can I be present at the mastering session?

No, it has been our policy not to have clients at the mastering sessions.

Q. Where can I have my mastered project manufactured?

We can handle that for you in-house. We are here to do the job!

Go to the Mastering Order Form for instructions on processing your Mastering.

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Michael R. Stevenson of Stevenson Enterprises
Web Design by Stevenson Enterprises