How do you know which Mastering Studio is right for you? There is an overwhelming number of Mastering Studios to choose from on the internet, so how can you tell which one is right for you? Once you have finished recording your music you want to be sure that it is then put into the best possible Mastering Studio you can afford. This can be a hard goal to accomplish with such a large amount of
Mastering Studios to choose from. One thing that you will want to look for is a demo offer. Most Mastering Studios will allow you to hear what they can do with your music so that you can be sure that it is the direction you are looking for. This is a great way to test the waters before you plunge in.
Another thing you should look for is a Mastering Studio that charges per song, and not by the hour. This can be a big help if you have to stay within a budget (as most of us do). If you pay per hour you could find yourself paying for a few more hours than you thought, and this can add up very quickly.
It is best not to normalize or add any compression to your final mix before Audio Mastering. We will add multilevel compression, and bring levels up without normalizing the audio. It is however ok to use compression and effects on the individual tracks, just not the final stereo mix. In general, the less you do to the final mix the better.
If you have been working in the digital domain, deliver your mixes at the highest bit depth you can. You should never send in a compressed version of your song for Mastering. Some examples of these versions are Mp3, RealAudio, and Windows Media Audio. These versions do not contain all of the necessary data to work with when Mastering.