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  #1  
Old 02-14-2003, 09:14 AM
DeadHead DeadHead is offline
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Default \'Home\' mastering for radio question. Please advise.

All -

I have just recently gotten an opportunity to get some of my songs on three local radio stations. They said they'd work me into the regular rotation and get out a little blurb that I'm a local musician, and a project studio doing my own recording. I live in a small town with a lot of local musicians, and I'm one of the few, if not the only Pro Tools user around. . . .

I have been recording with my PTLE 001 set up for two years now, but have not yet done any work for radio. I am amateur and this is an exciting local opportunity for me.

I have done what I'd call 'home' mastering to get my final stereo mix levels up enough that they sound good on CD and still retain some dynamics. I gently use the Waves L1 for that.

My music is generally acoustic guitar, and my vocal, with occasional bass tracks (very simple) to fill out the sound a bit, and sometimes some additional acoustic tracks to pretty things up a bit. . . . usually just acouostic and a vocal though.

Does anyone have any suggestions, ideas, concerns, for doing amateur 'mastering' for radio play ? Is there anything I should do different ? Anything a newbie to this media might consider ?

Your comments are appreciated.

Regards,
DeadHead
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  #2  
Old 02-14-2003, 10:37 AM
DeadHead DeadHead is offline
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Default Re: \'Home\' mastering for radio question. Please advise.

No veterans out there with some radio experience ?
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  #3  
Old 02-14-2003, 10:55 AM
Notefarm Notefarm is offline
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Default Re: \'Home\' mastering for radio question. Please advise.

Hi there,

Congrats on your new gig. There are lots of people here that can help, but you may want to try posting here
http://www.recording.org/cgi-local/ubb/ultimatebb.cgi
As there is a mastering forim there
Have fun
Peace
NoteFarm
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  #4  
Old 02-14-2003, 12:56 PM
DeadHead DeadHead is offline
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Default Re: \'Home\' mastering for radio question. Please advise.

Thanks Notefarm !!

I posted on the TDM forum as well and am getting some good advice there.

Thanks again !!
DeadHead
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Old 02-14-2003, 02:22 PM
Lowfreq Lowfreq is offline
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Default Re: \'Home\' mastering for radio question. Please advise.

I have made a few parody style jingles for radio airplay (local) and have heard my bands cd played on local stations and huge ones (local rock show stuff). On ething I have observed, and I am by no means an expert, was radio station limiters vary wildly. For the jingles on a local station, they sounded fairly balaced, loud and proud. But the music cd tunes sounded overly compressed on a one station and really boomy on another local station. On the major market station it sounded a bit boomy and a fairly noisy. Now my mixes on the music cd were far from perfect as they were earlier attempts. But the jingles were newer and much less complex. The last jingle I had sent to a pair of local DJ's (it was a jingle contest) I specifically used less limiting (basically less 'mastering' plugs and levels) so the cd was not nearly as loud as it could have been. The result was a cleaner reproduction over the air. Maybe I was just lucky. Hope at least something in this posts helps.
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Old 02-14-2003, 02:29 PM
DeadHead DeadHead is offline
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Default Re: \'Home\' mastering for radio question. Please advise.

Thanks Lowfreq !

That is helpful and will be considered this evening when I get to my studio !!

Regards,
DeadHead
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  #7  
Old 02-14-2003, 04:29 PM
MidnightFlyer MidnightFlyer is offline
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Default Re: \'Home\' mastering for radio question. Please advise.

I understand that radio stations have their own compression systems that they slap on whatever they play. So whatever you do when you mix, it will be further compressed on the air. Take that into consideration.
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  #8  
Old 02-18-2003, 10:51 AM
ronev ronev is offline
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Default Re: \'Home\' mastering for radio question. Please advise.

Deadhead, I record and master Blues and R&B cds for radio using PT Digi001 and MBox, and I've recently started using the Pultec RTAS EQ and the DUY Wide RTAS plug-in on the master mix which made a huge difference in overall level and sound. The DUY has a phasing circuit which widens and limits the sound. I was leery of this at first, but I (and my clients) am very pleased with the results.

You might want to give it a listen.

Hope this helps.
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Old 02-18-2003, 11:53 AM
PhiDelta308 PhiDelta308 is offline
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Default Re: \'Home\' mastering for radio question. Please advise.

There are lots of tricks to getting that radio ready sound. Generally speaking, the peaks should not be moving around at all. It's unfortunate, but it's the nature of the beast to have almost no dynamic range on the radio. Experiment with the harmonic structure of the mix to vary loudness, all that psychoacoustic stuff. Also, beware of the radio station's brick wall limiters. If you're mix triggers them, it's all over. Don't let your mixes touch digital zero. Even if the meters aren't turning red, you may still have clips if you push to close to digital zero. Also, you don't need to have a lot of bass in the mixes. I tend to always put high pass filters on everything. That means less work for the amplifiers and speaker cones playing back the mix. That should open up more room for the rest of the mix.

Good luck!

-Chris
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  #10  
Old 02-18-2003, 12:01 PM
where02190 where02190 is offline
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Default Re: \'Home\' mastering for radio question. Please advise.

No matter what you do, your mix will hit the RF limiters, that's the nature of FM transmission. Knowing that, if you keep your RMS level low, you can actually us ethat to your advantage. a lower mix level means less pumping of the RF compressors, and some dynamics in broadcast preserved.

Hope this is helpful.
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