I’ve talked at length in the past why getting your music mastered is so important. Forget the sequencing and the fact that it takes your collection of songs and makes it into a flowing full fledged record; mastering simply makes your music SOUND better.
Thanks to the internet you can submit your digital recordings of your music to the mastering engineer and they can master your music in full typically with a quick turnaround time. They’ll either create a DDP file which can be sent off to the CD replication plant, or they’ll create a master reference CD for you which can be sent to the plant, depending on your preference.
Because it’s so easy to get your music mastered thanks to the reach of the internet, there are now more mastering engineers out there vying for your attention and claiming to be the best. There are a lot of factors to consider when deciding on a mastering engineer. Things like cost and previous work experience both come to mind, but the most important deciding factor should be how much better they make your music sound, and the only way to determine that is to request a free test master.
In this article we’ll talk about why you should demand a free test master before parting with any money and before you commit to any one engineer in particular.
First, you want the free test master so that you can get an idea if the mastering engineer is a good fit for you and your music. Sometimes you’ll find that you’ll get your newly mastered music back and it’s either way off or you don’t notice any kind of change at all. Either way you know that it’s not a good fit.
Second, the free test master lets you communicate with the engineer in terms of what you want out of your mastered music. If you like the majority of what they do with that first mastering job, you can ask for a tweak. Maybe they added too much reverb (or not enough) for your liking. You can use the free test master to establish a dialogue and this initial step helps to get the two of you on the same page so that you can work towards the mutual goal of getting the best possible sound out of your music as you move forward together.
Also, you want the free test master as an option because if a mastering engineer is unwilling to offer the free test master, that should raise some red flags about him/her. The only people who can get away with this are big big time engineers who have made a considerable name for themselves and their talents can be 100% trusted. Even then typically they mostly only work in repeat business; artists who already know what it will sound like and are happy with it. Most likely you don’t have to budget to deal with someone on that level, so make absolute certain that they offer the free test master.
In the spirit of this article, I’m offering every artist a 100% cost free test master with a 24 hour turn around time. Receive your free test master right now and see how good your music could be sounding by going with Music Guy Mastering by clicking on the link in this paragraph.