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Is this bad pro mastering or am I being paranoid?

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Is this bad pro mastering or am I being paranoid?

Postby garient » Wed Feb 14, 2018 5:50 pm

Hi people

I'm trying to get s opinions concerning the 'mastering' on a song I've just had back from a pro engineer.

I've been using mostly the same mastering engineer for the last year ..but i've had one or two songs that back that seem very 'Crushed'.
I presumed this was just standard or maybe my mix. I'm paying about £40 a track for stereo mastering analogue.

On my last track ..I could actually hear a slight crackling sound at 1:54 on the word 'much' ..as if something had gone in to the red.
(link below)

The mastering engineer and he said it was fine on his system and must be mine. I can still here it on other media though.

it also feels like my ears are getting tired easily when listening to the master.
Just cant figure out if i'm being over paranoid and its all my head :-/..

The mix down is fine and peaking at -7Db and is actually is one of my better mixes.
As you can imagine this is big concern if the mastering is ruining my tracks

The link to my last track is here
https://soundcloud.com/garient/any-love ... er/s-RRbY4" target="phpbbpopup" target="phpbbpopup

Any feedback apreciated
Gareth
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Re: Is this bad pro mastering or am I being paranoid?

Postby James Perrett » Wed Feb 14, 2018 8:53 pm

Had a quick listen to it on HD25's plugged into my laptop and the biggest thing that struck me was that there was something funny with the high frequencies on the vocals. It sounds like someone has overused an Aural Exciter or just pushed up the HF eq too much. This is more likely to be a microphone or mix thing rather than a mastering thing as the high frequencies on other instruments seem fine.
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Re: Is this bad pro mastering or am I being paranoid?

Postby BJG145 » Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:32 pm

garient wrote:I could actually hear a slight crackling sound at 1:54 on the word 'much'...Just cant figure out if i'm being over paranoid

I just listened to it up to that point on a pair of old Sennheiser HD430s and I didn't notice any problems.
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Re: Is this bad pro mastering or am I being paranoid?

Postby Dave B » Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:54 pm

Caveat : I have a heavy cold-y flu-y thing at the moment.

I can't hear the distortion on 'much' that you mentioned and I'm checking on headphones (HD25-alikes from Senny).

I just find your mixing choice of having the piano that high and that far off centre very .. brave .. I wouldn't have done it but if you like it then hey yeah...
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Re: Is this bad pro mastering or am I being paranoid?

Postby Tim Gillett » Wed Feb 14, 2018 11:08 pm

It sounds OK to my ears but how much compression can be a matter of opinion.
It would help to have your "unmastered" track as well so we could hear the difference.
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Re: Is this bad pro mastering or am I being paranoid?

Postby CS70 » Wed Feb 14, 2018 11:41 pm

As Tim says, without having the mix to compare to it's hard to say. A mastering engineer shouldn't normally do all that much: a very good mix just needs the headroom removed and that's pretty much it. The sound shouldn't change, unless it's on an album where a little EQ can help creating an overall vibe.

Of course there's the loudness thing and someone can get happy with the limiter threshold.. don't know if it's the case here tough. I listened briefly and it doesn't sound crazy. Haven't heard any distortion. It does feel a little bright overall, and the drums/keys balance is different than I would have, but that's definitely not something the mastering engineer would attempt to correct - he would assume it's a conscious decision by the mixer.
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Re: Is this bad pro mastering or am I being paranoid?

Postby innerchord » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:21 am

OK, I had a quick listen. Levels suggest it's not a final limiting issue.

I can clearly hear the distortion you mention. It's L/R to my ears, not C.
It also happens a few bars earlier on the "I" of "I lost the rhythm...".

I'd really need to hear the original mix to say more...but would guess there's distortion in a stereo effect that has been applied to the main vocal, or some mid/side processing gone awry.

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Re: Is this bad pro mastering or am I being paranoid?

Postby job » Thu Feb 15, 2018 9:58 am

Cool track. Sounds like something additional came onto the vocal at 1:45-2:02 to me. Did you add a process or increase the level of something with automation at that time? That breakup/grainyness on the much word is on several words in this period.
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Re: Is this bad pro mastering or am I being paranoid?

Postby blinddrew » Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:43 pm

Also a caveat, like Dave B I have a cold, and I'm just listening on my laptop on a cheapish set of headphones. Like Job though, I can hear that break up on a few words around that period, if you'd not mentioned it though I would have assumed that was just the way your voice was breaking up.
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Re: Is this bad pro mastering or am I being paranoid?

Postby craigtumps » Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:28 am

Ive given it a listen on my headphones (Audio Technica ATH-E70). I see them as compression detectors, they really show up any obviously strained and over hot pop tracks. I don't hear anything major wrong with your track though.
I would agree with this comment below, that would seem the culprit to me.

Dave B wrote:Caveat : I have a heavy cold-y flu-y thing at the moment.

I can't hear the distortion on 'much' that you mentioned and I'm checking on headphones (HD25-alikes from Senny).

I just find your mixing choice of having the piano that high and that far off centre very .. brave .. I wouldn't have done it but if you like it then hey yeah...
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