Posted in : Forum : Mixing , Mastering And Production Techniques
Youve created a track but how do you give it that polished edge ? Discuss the art of mixing and mastering and swap production techniques.
I'm looking for tips and tricks for mastering. Plugins, track volume preferences, what's the correct dB for youtube, spotify, soundcloud, etc.
Any feedback appreciated.
The Glue Plugin with the preset Matering two enhances whole track!
I'll check out some reviews, thanks for the feedback.
Hey, you should check out this website: https://www.loudnesspenalty.com/ It shows you how much each streaming site will adjust your gain when streamed.
If you are able to use a loudness meter, streaming services target a range of about -14 LUFS. Some mastering plugins such as Izotope's Ozone even have this built-in as a target.
Thanks for the tip, I'll drop some of the files in the analyzer and see where am at on loudness. What I would like is a free VST plugin that will give me this info.
If you want a free easy loudness meter you should check out Youlean loudness meter 2. It has a free version that can show you enough information about the loudness for different time frames.
izotope ozone is a tool especially for mastering
Yeah I saw the Youlean meter in one of the tutorials I watched, I'm going to go ahead and download it. Ozone looks great, I may do the free trial, but don't want to spend money on plugins unless I have monetizable projects.
Thanks for the tips, these are the things I need to know.
Used the youlean meter, worked like a charm, focus on -14 LUFS, but I still seem quiet compared to other mixes.
Is there something I can do in the mix to make it louder without sacrificing dynamics or causing clipping (AKA not making a wav that looks like a brick)?
How can I get the track to similar loudness of a commercial track?
Please understand I realize those folks have mixes 40K songs, so it's an apples to gorillas comparison, but I would at least like to be in the ballpark.
That comes a lot down to mixing. I'm not familiar with how experienced you are but a good start is to think of your mix as somewhat of a reversed 3D pyramid. Try to fill sounds and layers etc in every part of that pyramid.
For sounds in specific you can try experimenting with compression and saturation. But don't get too involved in the loudness war. It's better to have a quieter track that sounds good than a loud track that sounds terrible. It's always possible for people to turn up the volume ;)
I agree with @NielsvandenBroek. It sounds like you are overly concerned with how loud it is over anything else. I would much rather have a great master that is not quite as loud as another than a bad master that is just as loud as then I can turn up the volume (as opposed to turning it off!).
Those are good points. I've been using YouLean to get the master to about 14LFU, that has been working for now. I agree that a quiet good sounding track is better. I've been experimenting with saturation (distortion) in lots of places, which helps a lot. I don't want my tracks to look like solid bricks. I also don't want my track lost in a mix or skipped because it does not compare in loudness while in a YouTube playlist. It's a fine line.
Thanks for the feedback, all of this helps.
Get yourself Youlean as it will tell exactly what LUFS you are at...and yes iZotope OZone is the best assortment of mastering tools placed together.
Quality & Clarity reigns over loudness ...so if you are new to mastering i would suggest finding a mastering house that offers reasonable prices for single track mastering....but in saying that if your overall mixdown isnt set right then the master wont be the best either and it would be money waisted.
Mixdown for mastering ... you should set you highest peak in a song so that on the master level indicator it lights up below -6db ... this way you are giving an engineer plenty of headroom to work the dynamics and sonics into the mix with ideal levels to cater for all outlest as Apple and Spotify both have different level requirements.
Theres tonnes to go thru...but hopefully this helps a tad
Thanks for the info.
I've been using youlean and "mastering" at -14LFUS, seems to work pretty good. If I was working with house money I would just pay for professional mastering.
I checked out ozone and I'm considering it, however the last one to suggest it spammed my email with a bunch of rude nonsense, so I've been hesitant (maybe he was working on commission). Several have mentioned it now though, so it is probably worth the $60 US.
All these tips are helpful, the youlean suggestion alone has made a big difference. I will probably keep going the DIY route for now so I can have reign over the dynamics (the compression I hear on local radio is almost unlistenable now).
Keep the tips coming, anything involving the final steps it what I need. Format and quality is also something I am not familiar enough with. I've been doing max quality MP3s for this site, but others have said use max quality WAV files for youtube.
I made a video here:
I used an MP3 and it sounds fine to me, what do you think?
For the formats: WAV represents the audio in it's full as intended, mp3 uses compression (not the audio kind but the data kind to save memory). It really depends on the track and the system it is played on how much you can hear it.
For Izotope Ozone you can try it for free for 10 days on their website, give it a go and see if it's worth it for you. Ozone is a nice plugin and I personally greatly enjoy using it, but it's not the holy plugin of mastering some make it to be. All the elements in it can be done with standalone plugins as well. Giving the trial a go might also give you a feel about how you can replace it with other plugins you that are free, come with you DAW or that you already own.
I have ozone (standard) and would definitely recommend it. Even the presets produce pretty decent results. I quite often start with a preset or the master assistant and tweak it from there. But if you’re feeling lazy or you are not sure how to tweak the master then the preset or master assistant result is usually fairly decent.
Re mp3 and wav - always use wav where possible. This article describes why...
That was a good article.
I pretty much want full multi-band compression and limiting options. I will use presets if they sound great enough to not mess with, but I like to turn knobs and see what happens. Most of my experience is music theory and guitar tech, so paying significant attention to the production aspect is new to me at least for the last couple months (since stuck at home for obvious reasons).
Also the link to the rendered video I posted was incorrect (another conversation, the other link was a channel I have been following), this is the correct link:
Thank's again for all the feedback, it's not like I can go talk to my neighbors about this stuff :)
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