The benefits of getting your track properly mixed and mastered
Posted: Apr 09, 2021
The blood, sweat and tears that go into making a track to be proud of is quite a thing. From the moment inspiration strikes in the form of a melody, a lyric or a riff that just won’t leave you alone, to the expansion of that seed into a healthy seedling and finally a fully formed mature plant of a song that you want to show the world.
Once the song is completely penned and you have practiced it along with the band if you have one, you will then begin to think about recording. Where this recording takes place may be in your home, or the home of a friend or you may have decided to book some studio time to get a professional space and use of high quality equipment. No matter where you record, there is no guarantee that the end result will tick all the boxes. In fact it is not uncommon at all for some less reputable recording studios to make a mess of the mixing and mastering of a track and in the home environment unless you really know what you’re doing the chances are you will end up with a recording that could be dramatically improved through mixing and mastering.
What is mixing and mastering?
Mixing involves the adjustment to and combination of individual tracks into stereo or multichannel format. During the mixing process the engineer will edit, make adjustments to pitch and time, manipulate fades and mend tracking levels. This is done first after recording, before the engineer moves on to mastering. Mastering involves processing the mixed track into its end form so that it is ready for wider listening. Mastering is, in essence the process of polishing and enhancing the mix – a sonic sweetening if you like.
Online mixing and mastering
Because of the unprecedented times we are living in with the Covid-19 pandemic it may not be necessary or even legal for you to travel to and enter a recording studio to get your track mixed and mastered. This need not stop you, however as most reputable studios now offer an online mixing and mastering service to save you the worry over travelling. Paul Miles from Select Recording Studios in London has kept busy during lockdown providing this service to his many grateful clients. "Online mixing and mastering has been a great way for customers to add a professional finish to their cherished tracks during this difficult time and in fact even before Covid-19 it was a very popular service."
The benefits of professional mixing and mastering
The benefits of proper mixing and mastering of a track are many. Without proper mixing you will not be able to combine the distinct elements that make up your recording. In essence, rather than a particular benefit, mixing is integral to the creation of a track. Professional mixing will combine the elements with subtlety and expertise. As for mastering – going with a studio engineer will ensure that the end result is cohesive and flows far better than it would otherwise. Without professional mastering you are likely to end up with a recorded track that lacks compression, matched levels and consistency of volume.
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