I know how you feel.
You’re confused by loudness and scared to over-compress your mixes during mastering.
But at the same time you also like mastering. Mastering is fun and allows you to get punchier mixes and louder songs.
I bet you also don’t understand all this loudness jargon though.
Like -16 dB LKFS, EBU R128 or all that jazz.
It hurts my head sometimes too.
Listening to professional mastering engineers and loudness gurus talk about all those standards is kind of like hanging out at a Star Trek convention.
You’re just hanging out checking out all the cool Trekkie stuff and enjoying all the nerdy pop culture.
But in the corner you hear the ultra-nerds.
And you can spot them easily too.
Because they’re the ones speaking Klingon.
That’s exactly how listening to mastering engineers talk about loudness is sometimes.
It sounds like Klingon and you just can’t understand it.
Luckily, the Jedi Master of Mastering (I’m really mixing up my metaphors here…) has come out with the universal translator for Klingon.
I mean…for loudness.
It’s Ian Shepherd’s Perception Plug-in.
It tells you exactly how your master bus processing is affecting your mix. It tells you whether your mixes sound better, or just louder.
Because your ears will trick you and tell you that anything that sounds louder sounds better, even though you know it’s not true.
Now you have a way to level-match your mix and your master bus processing in real time!
I’ve been using it for the last month when I’ve been sending mixes over to my client in Mexico. I’m ultimately going to master all the songs together but he wants to hear a “mastered” version of each song so I slap on some multiband compression and limiting to glue everything together.
With the Perception plug-in I can make sure I’m not just limiting the hell out of the mix. Instead I can make sure all the master bus processing I do is actually making my mix sound better, not just louder.
I’d go into more detail but Ian speaks better Klingon than I do so make sure to check out his video in the link below to see exactly how powerful his plug-in is and how it can help your mixes.
QoQ loudness quv chaDo’maq naDev vItu’: