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Joe Caithness Mastering’s “Guide to Digital Audio for Musicians” Part 1.5 : The Two Types of CD production

Published on October 5, 2018

“What the hell is the difference between CD replication and CD duplication?” This is a question asked by almost every client who comes to me to master for a short run of CDs. The rule of thumb is that if you’re making small amounts (usually up to 100 or 200) of CDs on a “make …
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Spotify releases new specifications for loudness and mastering

Published on October 1, 2018

From the Spotify for artists website: ( https://artists.spotify.com/faq/mastering-and-loudness#will-spotify-play-my-track-at-the-level-it’s-mastered ) “Ensure your master stays below -2db True Peak (TP) to be optimised for the lossy formats we use (Ogg/Vorbis and AAC), which, like all lossy formats, do not handle loud peaks well.” “Generally, you won’t benefit from mastering louder than -14dB integrated LUFS due to Loudness Normalization. There’s …
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Joe Caithness Mastering’s “Guide to Digital Audio for Musicians” Part 1 : CD Audio

Published on August 23, 2018

Welcome to part 1 of my new series of blogs to help musicians from a non engineering background understand some of the things they will encounter with audio formats. First up is CD Audio. First of all, so we have an understanding of how CD Audio differs to other consumer formats, we will look at …
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Joe Caithness Mastering’s “Guide to Digital Audio for Musicians” Part 0.5 : Language and Terminology!

Published on August 24, 2018

Sometimes communication breakdowns around language in music projects can slow down your workflow and generally kill the vibe. So let me take a moment to explain in the most practical way possible some of the terms you will come across with digital audio…. (Digital Audio) Sampling : How to turn an analogue signal (continuous voltage) into …
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Vintage Digital Series #3 :Junger Audio DO2 Digital Dynamics Processor

Published on October 29, 2017

I’m back on my vintage digital hype after a long break, mostly due to being deep into work doing masters and trying to fix various bits of obscure transfer gear I’ve picked up recently, maybe we’ll talk about that again soon but for now I’d like to tell you about something I picked up a …
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Mastering Engineers are not Audiophiles

Published on May 10, 2017

People often ask me about posh HIFIs out of the blue in the pub or on social media. Presumably this is because I post all about electronic music boxes and talk about frequencies and stuff. It took me years to work out why I was associated with people who spend money endlessly tweaking audio players …
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Vintage Digital Series #2 : TC Electronic – M5000 / MD2 Mastering

Published on November 23, 2015

Hey there, it’s been a while since I dropped in on this whole “Vintage Digital” thing. It’s kinda funny, I get some funny jibes and then some people genuinely intrigued when it comes to this stuff, I can’t deny that I do keep looking to pick this stuff up super cheap on eBay, but at …
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Dance/Club Music Producers.. We Need to Talk About Your Bottoms!

Published on July 17, 2015

Everyone likes fat bottoms right? Queen seemed to think it had something to do with gravitational forces they deemed it so important..For a long time now club oriented electronic music made in bedrooms and destined for the dance floor has paid for me to live. I see many tracks come in and out in a …
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Multiband Compression : let’s talk about it calmly…

Published on June 18, 2015

“Argh! get off my master! you’ve split the bands… you ruined my beautiful mix, multiband heathen!”“The mix was finished but we couldn’t get that damn low C note to work, after hours of processing individual channels we stuck a compressor over that frequency range and tucked it right back in, it sounds so TIGHT now!”Hang …
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What does “Mastering for Vinyl” actually mean?

Published on May 12, 2015

We mastering guys will often offer and be asked to perform the task of “mastering for vinyl”, almost always alongside digital audio masters of the same release (whether that is CD, digi download or both).But what does it actually mean?Well first of all it’s not the same as “Vinyl Mastering”! This is the process of …
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