CD mastering is a bit of an enigma and a nebulous process when it comes to audio editing. It is the final stage before a record goes off to be replicated and have thousands or millions of copies of it burned. Many people are still unclear as to what is the purpose of CD mastering? The purpose of CD mastering is three fold, and in this article we will identify each one.
First, the purpose of CD mastering is to create unity on the completed record as a whole. Oftentimes individual songs which make up a record will be recorded under different circumstances and in different environments. Sometimes different songs on a record may be produced in completely different studios with completely different producers at the helm.
Consequently, at the very least the levels of all of those different songs are likely to be all over the place even if it was recorded in the same space for its entirety. For this reason, mastering is used to make sure that all of the various songs which make up an album are set at the same volume and have a unifying sound to them so that nothing seems out of place or takes your attention away from the flow of the album.
Secondly, the purpose of CD mastering is simply to also improve the sound quality as much as possible. Mastering engineers use effects like limiters, compression, and equalization to get the best sound out of a recording.
If there are any jarring frequencies or mistakes in the audio quality on a record which got missed in the recording and production stage, the mastering engineer can use EQ to adjust and remove these glaring frequencies from the mix so that the listener cannot pick up on them.
Ideally these kind of cosmetic fixes and touchups are not necessary and any mistakes are caught in the recording and mixing phase; but just in case they are not, the mastering engineer is that last line of quality assurance. As a result, it helps to have your record mastered by someone who was not involved with the production of the record to that point so that you can also have a fresh set of years to be critical of your recordings and more easily pick up on any errors.
Finally, the purpose of CD mastering is to handle the technical aspects of finalizing a record. This involves the transitions and flows between songs on the record, inputting track information which is vital to track sales of that record, and ultimately render the entire album down to one file which can be sent over to the CD replication plant.
A good CD mastering job will not only boost the volume of your recordings to be consistent with industry volume standards, but more importantly again it will significantly improve clarity of your music. Find out how much better your music can be sounding by getting a completely free test master of one of your songs at no charge whatsoever.
It’s simple to upload your song and you can expect a turnaround time of less than 24 hours. There is no obligation so you have nothing to lose and everything to gain as you will not believe how much clearer and more professional your music sounds.