(This is what I send people that want me to master their recording)

A quick summary of Mastering is:

1) putting the songs in the correct order

2) making them sound better than the mix and sound like they aren’t from different times and studios (if possible) using eq, compression, and other effects

3) getting the level of each song to be roughly the same

4) encoding the CD with whatever data is wanted to be added (song titles,  Performer/songwriter, ISRC codes, etc)

5) creating a DDP image file (recommended) or for longer CD’s, a PM-CDR for the plant to use to duplicate your CD.

What I need is:


1) song titles (exact spelling please)

2) the finished mixes in 24 bit .wav or.aif format with the peaks levels between -6 and-3 db (if possible)

(you can give them to me on CD or bring me a hard drive or give me an FTP site)

3) order of songs

4) Performer/songwriter

optional but recommended

1) Name of Record Company (if any)

2) how much space between songs (normal is 2 seconds)

3) ISRC code for each song

4) UPC/EAN Code for the whole CD (if you have one)

Definitions and resources

1)  DDP – Disc Description Protocol

CD pressing plants can handle many different formats but in practice a DDP Image File proves the most reliable form of transfer to the plant.

PM-CDR – Pre-master compact disc writeable

(I make this for you)

2)  The ISRC (International Standard Recording Code) is the international identification system for sound recordings and music video recordings. Each ISRC is a unique and permanent identifier for a specific recording, independent of the format on which it appears (CD, audio file, etc) or the rights holders involved. Only one ISRC should be issued to a track, and an ISRC can never represent more than one unique recording.

ISRCs are widely used in digital commerce by download sites and collecting societies. An ISRC can also be permanently encoded into a product as its digital fingerprint. Encoded ISRC provide the means to automatically identify recordings for royalty payments.

https://usisrc.org/(S(5bxc0fqhsx1kif3kfmjvo245))/index.aspx  (link to where to go to get your codes)

3)  UPC (Universal Product Code)

EAN (originally “European Article Number”, but now renamed ”International Article Number” even though the abbreviation has been retained)

http://ezupc.com/?gclid=CJ2gtt6m6aICFRX_iAodNk0Yvg  (link to get your UPC/EAN code)

One Response to “A quick summary of Mastering”

  1. hi…

    I just would like to give a huge thumbs up for the great info you have here on this post. I will be coming back to your blog for more soon….

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