After we've laid down the raw tracks, we
move into the mix phase. During mix, we will
go through each track, set its volume and
position in the stereo field, and possibly
add some equalization and compression to
bring out the sound of the instrument. This
is also where we add effects (reverb, delay,
etc) to produce a consistent (or not, if
you prefer) ambience. This work varies based
on the instruments, the type of music, and
your own individual playing style. If you
have a favorite sound or technique, please
let us know - we want this to be your project,
and not a mass-produced copy of every other
The final step in the process is mastering. For most projects, you will want to engage a separate facility to handle the mastering. This allows you to have a different set of ears (and a different set of speakers) listen to your project, and add the final tweaks to make it ready for release. We do provide mastering, most often with our digital system, but if you prefer the analog feel, we also have the high-end mastering gear for that.
In the mastering step we take a stereo mix and make subtle changes, such as a final equalization and compression, bringing up the sound levels to commercial CD standards, and possibly adding some analog processing to warm up the sound. When that is complete, we burn two masters - a redbook CD (one that plays on nearly every consumer CD player) for you to take to a duplicating facility, and a high-resolution digital CD (one that plays on our mastering unit) for archives or for remastering. We will maintain 24 track and 2 track masters for two years, or deliver them to you upon request. Alternate formats for masters are available, but there will be a fee for the format change.
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