What does an audio engineer do when mastering music?

So youre a musician that just recorded your first album. You probably went into a recording studio and played all of your parts a couple of times, with the audio engineer handling all of the technical stuff. As far as you know, they should be able to take all the parts they recorded, burn it to a disc, and then it should be ready to press. While this isnt completely wrong, most professional musicians take their mixed down recording and pass it off to someone else for mastering.

What is mastering?
Mastering is the final step in the production of an album where they add the final polish to the recording. This is done by technically enhancing the clarity of the mixes. This makes the compilation of songs sound more coherent, more together. This also ensures that the mixes sound well on all listening devices.

Well, thats all fine and dandy, but does a professional mastering technician do when mastering a recording?

1. Volume Level Maximization
This is to make sure that all audio is at maximum volume, so that all songs are at the same volume level. Ever watch late night TV, where the volume of the commercials are a couple notches higher than the show...


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This PLR article was posted in Music.