Our mastering process

Much of audio mastering consists of the equalization, compression and sequencing of various audio tracks within a project into a consistent whole.

In any given project, the music itself will dictate the necessary steps to a complete master, which will be expanded on and refined by our discussions. Unlike many mastering studios, we encourage clients to be present for the session or sessions. We even provide a bar for any project participants who’s attention spans lend themselves to the occasional check-in, or who might need to be on hand to cut a last minute live track or two.

Storybook is equipped with a full professional tool set to get your project done.

Studio hourly rate is $75, but most albums (about 45 minutes in length and like, 10 – 13 songs) we work out a block rate of around $500, which includes one round of revisions. Anything that goes beyond that round of revisions goes to the hourly pricing. About 80% of the projects that come out of Storybook Sound don’t end up needing revisions at all.

The physical production Master CDs themselves have a la carte prices.

Email us at info@viewing-room.com and include how many songs or tracks there are, a rough estimate of the running time of the entire project, and what you’re going to do with the master when it’s done (CDs, iTunes, vinyl, etc.)

We’ll let you known if we have any more questions, and then send you a quote. If you’d rather do this on the phone, please let us know. Once we’ve settled on a price, we can accept PayPal or credit cards…cash or a check in the mail works, too.

To master your digital recordings, we prefer a single stereo .wav or .aif file per track made at the same sample rate (same kHz) as the mix session, at 24-bit depth or higher. Of course, any format you’ve got will work…

Please upload your audio files enclosed in a .zip folder via WeTransfer or Dropbox. Using a .zip folder protects your audio when transferring it online. Audio may also be sent via analog tape, FTP upload (email for info), YouSendIt, burned to a CD, carrier pigeon, etc.

Then use the project details form to send exact song titles, song order, album title, performer name and genre for the CD text (mostly used by car CD players). Songwriter name, ISRC codes, UPC codes (bar codes), and copyright are other details for the CD or CD-Text can be added on a per title basis as well. Finally, include any notes for edits that may include fades, count-offs, noises, etc.

You can use this simple form to upload your zipped files directly to our dropbox folder.

Your master can be delivered as any of the following formats, to suit your needs:
· Production master CD – ready for duplication
· Reference CD – for a listening test
· DDP Image – a set of audio and index files used by duplication houses, sent on a data CD or online via FTP. Download DDP Player software here…so you can check the master with your own computer, or make your own audio CDs.
· High resolution files – recommended for iTunes upload
· Analog tape – preferred by many as an archive
· MP3, AAC, or other digital audio formats – for reference or internet delivery

If you’re not sure which formats you want, let us know, and we can help you figure it out.

Finally…we check all masters before they leave the studio, but you should always listen to your production master on your choice of headphones – uninterrupted! – before sending it off for duplication or final download.