[linux-audio-user] Re: [ANN] jamin-0.9.0 release

R Parker rtp405 at yahoo.com
Tue Aug 10 11:32:58 EDT 2004


> On Tuesday 10 August 2004 03:10 am, Jan Weil wrote:
> > On Mon Aug  9 13:32:31 2004 Alastair Couper wrote:
> > > While we're on the subject, could anyone point
> to a tutorial or something
> > > similar that covers mastering? Big subject, I
> know, but I am wanting to

Maybe it's simpler than we think. I'll try to explain
by stating that Mastering is all about loudness and
nothing else. That statement is close enough to true
when there's nothing wrong with the mixes that you're
working on.

Assume you have 10 great sounding mixes but they
aren't loud enough and that everyone of them has a max
peak of -10.0dbfs. The first opportunity is to claim
10db--increase peaks to 0.0dbfs.

JAMin and every other mastering solution have numerous
gain stages; input, eq, compressor, limiter,
boost/softclip, output. In this simplified scenario,
we fix all ten mixes by increasing input gain 10db.

The input gain might give us a max peak of 0.0dbfs for
every song but this is unlikely to produce enough
loudness. The single remaining challange is to
increase the average response. The peak is the loudest
frequency while the average is the max response level
for the majority of the frequency range. How to
describe this:

In the audible range of 20Hz to 20kHz, all of our
example mixes have one frequency peak from 250Hz to
500Hz. When 250-500Hz is peaked at 0.0dbfs, every
other frequency is at -20.0dbfs. Well, how could it be
any easier than this? It couldn't!

If equalization is used to adjust 250-500Hz by
-10.0dbfs the gap between the peak and the average is
10db. But that isn't enough so we select the low band
of the compressor and apply a 10:1 ratio of
compression to close the rest of the gap.

This creates a new average peak at -20.0dbfs. We've
got 20db of headroom and all of the aforementioned
gain stages can be used to move the average up to
0.0dbfs. Now we've got loudness and a hell of alot of

Obviously real mixes have numerous "errant" frequency
bands and the objective isn't to bash the hell out of
them. The example is far from reality but it describes
the primary objective and demonstrates how to use the
tools of a mastering application to reach the goal.

Now we can put bandages on crappy mixes and excersize
our last opportunity for creativity--an often
mentioned mastering concept that makes me want to load
the shotguns. But first-things-first, it's coffee


> > I found the 'Articles' section at
> <http://www.digido.com> to be
> > a good starting point.
> >
> > But, of course, they're trying to sell the book.
> Aren't we all (in one way or another)

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