I'm re-thinking how...
Clear all

I'm re-thinking how I Mix/Master

2 Posts
2 Users
Active Member Member
Joined: 7 months ago
Posts: 9
Topic starter  


So I have a workflow that follows the historically established method of making the mix, then mastering the mix. If there's a problem with the mix during master, go back and fix the mix.

I am a small one man shop, so I do it all. Not the best approach, but it's where I'm at.

I use Ozone to Master. I like the results I get, but at times, there is a significant change in how the song sounds when I put it through Ozone, causing me to go back to the mix. If I go with the idea that mastering is really only meant to make minor adjustments, my model breaks. Ozone is a mastering tool right? So my above statement seems to make at least some sense.

So here's where I'm starting to rethink things. Once I get the mix done, I add Ozone to the master buss of the mix session, and process the song, When it come time to master, it can be aligned to the other songs in the project and adjusted accordingly during a project mastering session.

I know at the end of the day, I need to create great music.

Am I on an island all by myself with this re-think?

Active Member Member
Joined: 6 months ago
Posts: 6
No, I don't think you're alone at all. The "historically established method" made a lot of sense all through music production history up until a few years ago. You had to do it that way, because no one could master their own music to get it ready for printing onto vinyl and cassette, and later CD. So you had to have the mix 100% perfect.

Today, you can easily still do it that way, of course.

But there's definitely an ability--only in the last few years, I think--where you can pre-master as you're mixing. When I'm putting a project together, I've got the master in mind as I'm setting things up very early. Then, like you, when I use Ozone I'm not terribly surprised by the results I get because I was expecting them. And with Ozone, it's easy to adjust it afterward for getting it right. Ironically, I spend *less* time than ever before by spending that time upfront getting it ready. Mastering was a chore, but now it's easy because I'm starting to pre-master while still mixing. I think you'd find our respective methods are far more similar than different.

Not to say this is right and all others are wrong: mastering developed as a formal process because of the nature of physical media distribution. Today, with everything moving toward streaming, you're not as locked into a traditional method--even though the traditional method works 100% of the time.

I'd say if you're only interested in streaming music, you've got a ton of ways to get there yourself, and new rules can apply. If you're interested in music that sounds great on CD, over the radio, in a car, in a TV show or movie, then a mastering engineer with a formal process is still the best way to go. But not the only way.