The Master Track

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Here’s a piece of information for all the guys who mix from their home and take the product to a Mastering studio or to a Mastering engineer.

Throughout the years it’s been increasing the amount of both established professional engineers and amateurs who have created the habit of using a bunch of plug-ins in the master track. To me, that track is sacred! Nothing should alter it or change any of the sound that comes out of it. Therefore, no plug-in should be added on it.

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Usually, some engineers send all the mix to a stereo audio track and enable the recording so they can master it in that track. Others simply bounce the mix to a .wav or .AIFF file to get it mastered separately.

Either way, it’s always recommended not to alter the sound that comes from the master track. The cleaner the track gets to the mastering “station”, the better the outcome.

Another thing I’ve seen in very few sessions is that the engineer who tracks the audio works without a Master Tracks. Why? No idea, maybe is a technique way beyond my knowledge, which I doubt, because in Sound Recording 101 they teach you to use a Master track. Anyway, if you are mixing a session that come form another studio, make sure you have an active Master track and check all the other master tracks that could had been added.

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Francesca Costantino



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