Online mastering creates a difference in our mixes. Musicians and producers are very particular about getting a record mastered for a maximized sound output. Mastering is a separate art from mixing and other elements in creating music.
With the rise of technology, online mastering has emerged and is a very common service being offered on the internet. There are even some who offer the service in the comfort of their own home. Mastering is a form of art. Like any other art, it requires quality equipment to produce top-grade results. If you require a professional approach, then it is best to leave it in the hands of a professional.
Here are a few mistakes that even professional online mastering engineers make and what you need to watch out for.
- Lack of Dynamic Range
Dynamic range is the space between the loudest sound and the softest sound in your track. It is quite ideal to leave a dynamic range of around 3dB to 5dB for the online mastering engineer to work on your recording.
The problem with mixing your record, dynamic range is compressed too much and actually takes away the engineer’s capability to make any adjustment. A good online mastering engineer needs enough dynamic range to bring up the presence of the bass while adding clarity and sparkle to the high end of the recording.
- Lack of Panning
Panning in simple terms is the distribution of sound signal or a spread of sound signal in a stereo or multi-channel sound field. Panning allows space to be added in a mix when done properly. It is through this method that allows an engineer to create balance among the elements within a stereo field in your mix. (read more here: https://studios301.com/)
It is important to note that while there are certain elements that need to be kept in the center (ie. Kick, snare, bass, and vocals), it is equally important to spread the other elements. This allows the recording to have a separate and distinct sound for background vocals and some guitar parts. By doing this, you create a much less cluttered sound created by the mix.
- Lack of Timing
There’s nothing much an online mastering engineer can do about this one. It is a common problem engineers encounter when a recording to be mastered is mixed in stems. Timing is very critical which a mastering engineer cannot fix. This is why it is critical in making sure that your tracks are not misaligned.
- Lack of Phase Adjustments
With all the mixing and mastering being done in stereo, it gives the music great sounding tracks that give the recording its character. It is important to make sure that you check your mixes in mono to ensure that there is phase-cancellation due to microphones that are placed in locations that poorly captures the sound. Listening to your mixes in mono allows you to identify which sounds are missing.
The same principle can happen to your reverb. It happens that you apply reverb to create that rich sound only to disappear in mono.