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Mastering audio is the final stage in music production, where the final set of mixed songs are turned into a cohesive album through a variety of processes that make the music sound the best it can, wherever it's played. Join author and producer Bobby Owsinski in this course, as he teaches essential mastering concepts and techniques used by experienced audio engineers. Follow along as he works at Oasis Mastering, a real-world mastering facility, and learn how to apply these techniques to your home or studio setup and make your projects sound better than ever.
First, discover how to configure your monitoring setup, optimize your listening environment, and prepare and print alternative mixes that will allow you to make quick fixes during mastering. Bobby then reviews a selection of dedicated mastering tools that give you precise control over select signal parameters, from compressors to de-essers. He'll discuss the differences between mastering for CD, online distribution, and specifically for iTunes, and how to achieve the best results for each medium. The course wraps with lessons on mastering for high-resolution formats like Blu-ray, as well as delivering and archiving the master recording once the project is complete.
Even though mixes in a digital audio workstation could be almost instantly recalled and changed, most mixers still print alternate mixes in order to make ultra-quick fixes during mastering possible. While alternate mixes with the vocal up or down a dB used to be the norm, today's mixers find that three types of alternate mixes can accomplish most fixes. The instrumental mix. (music playing) The A cappella mix. (music playing) And the TV mix. (music playing) An instrumental mix is often used to clean up objectionable lyrics and a song by editing in a small piece of the instrumental over the final mix of the lead vocal, that way the mix sounds a lot better than if the word is beeped out. It's also sometimes used for licensing television shows.
(music playing) By using a combination of the instrumental mix with A cappella mix, it's possible to raise or lower word that might be too loud or masked. (music playing) The TV mix is everything but the lead vocal, so the artist or band can appear on television and sing live against a prerecorded background.
Sometimes it's provided instead of an instrumental mix. (music playing) While editing may be an overlooked skill required during mastering, it can come in handy when alternate mixes are available. Even though mix fixes in a digital audio workstation can be fast, sometimes using the alternate mixes to make a fix can be even faster. If you're on the fence about level or EQ over the certain instrument in the mix, print a couple of options.
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