Online Mixing and Mastering - FAQ
Online Mixing and Mastering
What is the difference between mixing and mastering?
When you have the separate audio tracks that a composition comprises of (instruments, voices, etc) and you need us to mix them into one track that is mixing. If you have all these tracks mixed together into one audio file - then you need mastering. Stem mastering is the mixing of groups of tracks, for example, drums, voices, keyboards, guitars.
How many revisions do you offer?
We always include one revision for all our services. One revision means you can write any number of comments to your track after you get the preview file. Example "Lower the voice in the first chorus, add some piano on the second verse, pan lead guitar to the right, add some delay effect on the solo, etc". All this is one amendment. If after we send you the corrected version and you want further changes, this will count as a second amendment. Where stated sometimes this is included for free, otherwise, we have to charge extra to cover the time required.
Can you make alternative mix versions?
Sure! We can make as many versions as you require. If you need an instrumental, acapella, "clean" radio edit, etc., you should mention it in your order. In some cases, we charge a small fee for versions.
In what format is my final mix or master delivered?
In most scenarios, we send you the high-quality mp3 for approval, after which, you have several options. If you ordered just a mixing service, you will typically receive it as a stereo wave file with 24-bit resolution. Sample rate depends on your request and original tracking. If we mix "in the box", then you will receive the same sample of which you supplied your tracking. If we mix on the desk, we usually "print" the mix at 88.2 or 96 kHz, depending on requirements. We can print mixes up to a sample rate of192 kHz.
Mastered files are sent back to you as a .wav master (CD-Master) with 16-bit resolution at 44.1 kHz sample rate, digital distribution 24-bit master file, and a professionally encoded mp3 file with metadata and clip protection. We can also provide separate master files for YouTube and other streaming platforms, in compliance with their loudness regulations to minimise quality degradation. On your request, 24bit 96kHz master files can be provided.
Do you offer a simple analogue summing service?
We can mixdown up to 40 channels in analogue. This means that you can send up to 20 stereo stems and we will mix them at "unity gain". This will result in your balance being unchanged.
Do you offer stem mastering?
Yes, we do, but we are using strict terminology to avoid confusion. Stem mastering stands for stem mixing and final mastering. Our stem mastering is intended to offer a minor level of mix enhancement and not a complete mix rebalance. We do not change levels of your stems unless it is critical and we have to do it for the sake of the result and then we do the final master of the resulting mixdown.
Can you supply a DDP image?
We can supply a DDP-image of your EP or Album for physical distribution. Check the mastering plans for inclusion of this service.
What if I want to release "Mastered for iTunes"?
TakeAwayStudio.com is an official Apple's "MFiT (Mastered for iTunes)" certified provider. Recently they changed the name to "Apple Digital Masters".
What about mastering for vinyl?
Yes, we can offer this upon special request. Contact us for more details.
Do you offer vocals or instrument editing?
If your voice sounds great but it is a bit out of tune, or your drummer missed a few beats - we can fix it. We do it with care and a musical ear. In some service packages, this option is included, but if you need thorough editing and tuning, you can always order it as a separate service.
How do I place an order?
It is as simple as using an online shop. You simply select the service you require, add it to your cart and proceed to checkout.
How do I send my materials to you?
You can use any file sharing platform such as Dropbox, Google Drive, WeTransfer etc. Simply provide a link for us to download them during the checkout procedure.
What if I have more than one song?
You just need to use the quantity field when adding services to the cart. If you have different options for each track, you may add as many services to your cart as you require.
What audio format do you accept?
We accept any standard audio formats (wav, aiff, mp3 etc). But you should follow our export guide to be sure you providing us the best quality tracks. Feel free to use zip archive when sending a large number of files
I made a mistake when ordering.
Just contact us and provide the order number. We will sort it out.
How long does it take to mix my song?
After you place an order and upload your material please allow 24 hours to assign the right engineer and studio for your mix. If everything is ok with your tracking, you should give us another 48-72 hours to mix your track and send you the first version for approval. Sometimes you may receive it the same day, otherwise please be patient. We never compromise the quality of our work, so we always spend the right amount of time to make sure you get the best possible result.
How long it will take to master an album?
After we receive and check your tracks, your order will be placed in our mastering queue. Normally you will get the first track mastered after 24-48 hours, but for full album mastering please allow a 72 hours turnaround, however, if you have a delivery deadline, please inform us when placing your order.
What if I need my project urgently?
If you need your mix or master "yesterday", contact us before placing your order. We will check if there is an available spot in our schedule to meet your deadlines. We do not charge for an "urgent service", because we believe that a "rush service" may compromise the quality.
How long do you require for each revision?
In most cases, you will get your revision in 12-36 hours.
Is there a timeframe for each amendment?
If you received your mixed or mastered track and we didn't receive an amendment request within 14 days, we will consider the project complete. However, life is full of surprises and we know what it's like to be a creative individual. We may carry out an amendment after 14 days, but at our discretion. Please keep in mind that we do not keep projects forever. After two weeks, your session will be archived.
What happens if my mix or master is returned after the deadline?
To get the full answer to this question you may refer to our "Terms of services". To cut it short; if we did not meet the agreed deadline and it is completely our fault we will issue a refund. Period. However, we never had such a case since we started our online business back in 2009.
What Payment methods do you accept?
At the moment we accept all major cards via PayPal. This is one of the most secure methods of online payment. We don't keep any credit card details or your payment information. This is all processed via PayPal. In some cases, we can accept a bank transfer.
Do you work on credit?
What about your refund policy?
Please check our "Terms and Conditions" for the full legal answer. In simple words, if something is wrong and it is our fault you will be refunded. If you don't like how your drummer played his part after the master file is delivered to you, there can be no refund.
Do you provide an invoice?
Of course! Fill in your billing details at checkout and you will receive the invoice when the work is done.
When do you charge for your services?
After you complete checkout, we only receive a payment authorisation. Only when we check the integrity of your materials and start working, will the money be debited from your account.
How long do you keep the session?
Depending on our workload, we keep sessions for about 3 months in our archives. We guarantee 2 weeks of storage after completion of the project, in case you need to add or change something.
Can I have the session/project files?
No. Our project files contain a lot of our own know-how and techniques developed through years of experience. We are, however, able to bounce stems of your mix on request. There will be a small fee to cover the time required.
Do you operate "working hours"?
We are creative individuals, not clerks. We obviously have some time for ourselves, families and other activities, but we do not operate around strict rules on the time of the day or day of the week. You should expect longer turnaround times during public holidays and weekends.
Can I virtually attend the session?
If we see that we need your input into our mixing, production or editing work, we are happy to host you on skype or many other forms of communication.
Who owns the copyright?
All our services are performed on "work for hire" basis. This means that you will retain all the copyright. When you order music production services and we arrange, produce, perform and record the instruments you retain 100% of the rights. We will provide a "Copyright release form" when the production is completed.
Do we have to credit TakeAwayStudio.com for your work?
It is not mandatory, but we would always appreciate any credit for our efforts. Something like "Mixed and Mastered by TakeAwayStudio.com" would be great.
What about confidentiality?
All your materials are strictly confidential within our company. We do not share it with the public in any form. If we would like to include some of your music as part of our own demo, we will always seek your consent first.
How is my personal data being processed and used?
I didn't find the answer I was looking for...
Please contact us and we will do our best to answer your questions and satisfy your curiosity.