I wrote a detailed blog post about how I do mastering (mostly D&B)

fanu

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#1


Hiya! Some of you may know me from my frantic D&B productions as "Fanu" (also done a bit of hip hop recently as "FatGyver").

I master bass music, and already have a few hundred masters (I lost count a long time ago) under my belt – all happy clients. I do it daily now, and am happy to see it's becoming a business for me.

I get asked how I do it every now and then.
I've always been into sharing knowledge – I'm a bit of a teacher by nature, so I wrote a blog post of what mostly happens in my mastering chain.

Read the post with detailed description of all plug-ins used and their functions on my blog: http://fanumusic.com/about-mastering/

All discussion is welcome, and if you have anything to ask, just holler.
Should you need mastering, don't hesitate to get in touch: fanusamurai@gmail.com

Prices and other info: http://fanumusic.com/mastering/

-Janne (aka Fanu / FatGyver)
 
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#2
Thanks for the article but I was wondering I have some finished tracks in Logic Pro X and the only way I can currently get them to not clip when recording leaves them sounding very quiet. Is the solution to quieten the parts that clip until I can get the whole track at a more similar level so I can increase the overall volume?
 

fanu

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#3
Thanks for the article but I was wondering I have some finished tracks in Logic Pro X and the only way I can currently get them to not clip when recording leaves them sounding very quiet. Is the solution to quieten the parts that clip until I can get the whole track at a more similar level so I can increase the overall volume?
If it clips, it's too loud.
 
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#4
to resolve that would you just go through that section of the track and see what you can make quieter or would you look at reducing the volume of specific parts or layers?
 

smoothassilk

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#5
to resolve that would you just go through that section of the track and see what you can make quieter or would you look at reducing the volume of specific parts or layers?
Yes, that's generally what a lot of mastering is.
Deciding what to reduce the levels of, how much by and how quickly to reduce them is a bit trickier.
 

sam the dnb man

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#6
The problem is probably to do with your mix down.

You probably have two sharp transients playing simultaneously.
Try and find what is causing te clipping then either reduce it in volume, or apply a short fade in on the offending hit
 

fanu

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#9
What's up guys.
Just did a count, and I'm happy to say I've mastered somewhere around 220 tunes so far this year (and counting). Not one unhappy client so far.
 

fanu

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#10


Proud to be holding in my hands the first vinyl I've mastered. After having treated a few hundred digital masters, I had the honor of handling this beauty released by Boston-based Zakim Recordings. Celebrate the divine wax! There's more vinyl coming treated by yours truly.

If you need mastering, see http://fanumusic.com/mastering/ and get in touch.
 

fanu

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#11
Some quick updates:
-mixing+mastering price is now 80 EUR (as opposed to earlier 60 EUR) per song
-price per master 30 EUR, but will probably rise slightly in 2016
-just expanding to mixing and mastering for TV (EBU r 128 stuff)...first TV commercial assignment went down a treat
-recently had the honor of treating a nineties Pete Rock vinyl remaster; the original premaster was very tough, but the client was really happy. Super stoked, being a big fan of Pete Rock myself. Can't wait to hold that plate in my hands.
-got to master Thelem again...love his beats
 
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fanu

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#13
If something looks too good, it probably isn't that good in the end
(this is copy+paste from my blog post, which you can easily share if you like it: http://fanumusic.com/about-too-attractive-mastering/)

I haven’t written that much about mastering (aside from the somewhat exhaustive post about the process for me some time ago), so I wanted to write a few words about very attractive mastering prices and competition in the field. As I’ve been entering the field myself, I’ve seen a lot competition, stories about really low prices, crazy package deals, and some of that classic “My mate does it for a few pounds and a hot dog”.

Recently, another potential client got in touch with me and said he needs some songs mastered. He had got a quote from another mastering studio: 8 pounds per song. That’s not a lot. That’s roughly 11 EUR. You can go for that by all means, but I can guarantee those probably won’t come out sounding as strong as commercial releases. In this field, no-one who actually knows how to make professional results does it for that cheap. Sure, you could fool a less trained ear of a client by just pushing it loud, but those who can listen and compare, you can’t fool those types of clients. It might be interesting to have the same song mastered by ”an insanely cheap guy” and someone who a lot of people seem to trust. We all know who does a better job.

A friendly word of caution about attractively-priced package deals: it’s usually best to not commit to a package price before you are absolutely sure they can deliver the quality you want. One shouldn’t pay beforehand; personally, I’ve never charged a client beforehand – not even when they’ve wanted to pay me before I start (it’s just because I don’t like getting paid before I’m done; it’s a psychological thing. I don’t like the reward before the job’s finished and been done as well as possible. I’m willing to work on the most difficult premaster till it’s as good as it can possibly be – I take those jobs as challenges because I love what I do).

What you should understand when giving your song to someone for mastering is that not anyone can handle your song. For example: someone that’s a long-time pro in mastering movies may not necessarily understand the parameters and the desired impact of contemporary bass music (we have two extremes there: very dynamic material vs very heavy-hitting and limited).

Especially insanely cheap package deals should make you cautious. Those who push prices as low as mentioned above are either not experts in what they do (they are just using a quick mastering preset, call it done, and charge you no matter what) or it’s an automated process (such as Landr, whose prices are really low but their results are not precise, not made by a human). A computer can analyse a graph and correct/match it, but it cannot listen and go beyond the EQ graph correction. It needs a human being very, vary familiar with the genre in question and a very good listening environment to make your song as strong as it can be. The person with the best possible tools may not handle your song the right way if he doesn’t know exactly how it’s supposed to sound. There are so many variables in sound and each particular song that you simply cannot run it thru a preset or an existing, already-tweaked chain (or you can, but it will sound bad).

I specialize in bass music (D&B/jungle, dubstep, trap) and related styles (hip hop, downtempo, techno/house) and have also treated other styles when a reference song has been provided. I have been listening to this music for over 20 years now, so I suppose I’ve done my homework in that field. And I’m still learning and willing to learn and be as good as I can, for this music is my passion.
 

fanu

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#18


This is why my work as a mastering engineer is so fulfilling.That feedback is from an artist called SDS; I mastered his EP for Machinist Music, and absolutely loved those tunes.
If you're not familiar with those tunes, peep them at https://pro.beatport.com/release/andromeda/1611476

It feels amazing getting to hear some groundbreaking DNB (and other genres, too) and being a part of its release in a way.

I receive plenty of similar stories, and always feel happy about the success stories of my clients. Feels good after trying to make every single tune as strong as possible.

Crossed the 300 tunes border for this year. Without the intention of sounding cocky, based on this year and all the feedback without exception, I dare say my work stands up in comparison to those of the more well-known studios that have been around longer than I have, so don't hesitate to get in touch if you need mastering.
 
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