thoughts on: The Mastering Chain.

thoughts on: The Mastering Chain.


November 4th, 2015


I think a lot about the mastering chain, There is a real balance to be had when it comes to how much I want to push the final limit of masters. I am mainly interested in my music working in the clubs and festivals, and there is almost an imaginary “real world” plugin chain that is put on any tune weather I like it or not.

ok so it leaves my computer as a 24 bit 44.1k Wav File. then personally I convert all my wavs to 320 mp3 that takes off a little of the high tops.

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Then the signal goes out of my Serato box and into a pioneer DJM 900 (on my tech rider) picking up a little EQ and distortion, every club is running in the red!! lol Apparently I have a bit of a reputation for pushing the levels 🙂

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ok then the signal leaves the Pioneer into a Stage DI box to the front of house Mixing desk, this can happen digitally or down a long cable run.

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Then its into some kind of multi band compressor for protection of the expensive system they installed at great cost to the club owner and he don’t want it damaged.

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this part of the chain is kinda fuzzy, there are a lot of engineers out there doing different stuff. maybe some EQ to compensate for the room.

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Onward to the crossover network that splits the signal into frequency bands for the amps.

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Then to the amps that are gonna add some kind of distortion

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Into the peoples ears which have compression too, I really have no idea about the compression going on in my ears but I know I like to work really quiet in the studio because that pesky ear compression can fool me into thinking things are sounding sick when in reality of the cold light of day its all a bit wrong. Same with mixing on headphones. Some people get incredible mixes from headphones but I just really need some air between me and what I am listening to.

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There are lots of these chains my music will pass through such as Radio that crushes the music with heavy multi band limiting. iPhones again some kind of definite crush along with laptops which are a tough nut to crack. 600hz is kinda bass on small speakers so I try to keep that in mind kinda but really all I want is for a tune to work in a club.


I find putting a load of distortion on a final mix to simulate all the stuff thats going to happen to the tune before it hits the ears is a good way of knowing how something is gonna sound in a club without actually having to test it out.

Good luck with your productions.

Nice one!



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