Many believe that high-quality audio product creation ends with recording vocals & instruments — no, it’s rather just a beginning. If you want your work not to be wasted and your songs to enter the world charts, you can’t do it without mixing and mastering. Also, these elements of music editing will allow you to receive equally good sound both on headphones and speakers.
What’s the difference between mixing and mastering?
It often happens that the music industry rookies confuse these two terms, considering them to be the same. Some people even think that these stages of audio processing can simply be thrown out of the workflow to save time. Obviously, these are the two most critical mistakes.
Generally, mixing is the complex adjustment of individual tracks in your composition to produce a harmonious sound. The total work of a sound engineer includes such basic points:
- setting musical balance;
- panning instruments;
- formation of acoustic space (application of reverb or delay effects);
- creative editing.
Mastering is the final adjustment of a musical composition when your track is prepared for distribution on different music platforms & physical media. The soundman can manage such processes:
- stereo enhancement;
- adjusting the volume to the commercial loudness.
This way, while the mixing sound engineers are more focused on editing individual tracks, the mastering specialists are responsible for the harmonious correlations between the elements.
Why is mixing and mastering your tracks so important?
Numerous new tracks are uploaded to global streaming platforms such as Spotify, iTunes, or Soundcloud daily. How can you stand out from the multitude of talents? This is where the time comes for audio mixing and mastering techniques.
The listener doesn`t have to be an experienced harmonist to feel that something «gets in the way» in the music, sounds inharmonious, and some instruments overlap others. Hearing a clutter that will regularly irritate ears, the person will most likely skip your song. But if you decide to bring your musical composition to perfection and use the audio processing services, your chances of releasing a catchy composition will increase significantly. If you do something, do it as well as possible!
In addition, the mastering specialist will adapt your mix to the most splendid sounding on various media, which will allow him to conquer other platforms and devices while maintaining the sound quality. You also can do online mixing and mastering, but it is always better to contact experienced specialists.
How do I find mixing and mastering engineers?
If you decide to entrust the editing of your composition to professionals, responsibly approach the search for a mixing and mastering studio or individual people who provide such services. We can give you some tips for finding and choosing professionals so that the money invested in processing will pay off:
- Decide on a budget. It`s rather obvious advice, but it`ll narrow down the list of people you can contact. You can hire audio engineers who partner with well-known brands as well as contact a freelancer who will agree to mix your track for a minimal price or for portfolio material.
- Join the music community. Ask community members about their experience in hiring audio engineers. Perhaps they can advise you on trusted specialists. You can also find out who did the mastering of the single you like and contact him.
- Check the portfolio. Specialists in the audio industry often post their portfolio with tracks before and after editing. This will help you understand their level of professionalism and see if their skills fit your needs.
- Communication. Find out from the specialist whom you are going to hire, everything that interests you: how much he demands for the work, when the mix is supposed to be ready, what files are required from you, whether you need to be present in person at the mixing sessions, and so on. In the end, you will understand whether you want to work with this person.
Following these tips, you’ll successfully find professionals who can mix and master music according to your needs.
If you want to release a really high-quality descant that can become a mega-hit, the help of occupational sound producers will be indispensable. Scrupulously seek the right studio/online platform and follow the refining process of your mix. Once the composition is mixed and thoroughly mastered, the road to success is guaranteed.