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Step By Step Mastering With Only 5 Plug-ins


We’re onto mastering in our step by step mixing hip hop tutorial, and this week we’ll be adding our mastering chain to make things loud, punchy and powerful.

We’ll be using:

  • Linear phase EQ in mid/side mode to tighten up the low end
  • Multi-band compression to squeeze the dynamics and glue the mix together
  • Mid/Side EQ to widen the sides
  • Parallel limiting to add even more loudness without squashing the peaks
  • Slight stereo imaging to create a wider mix

This video ended up being about 35 minutes long so I cut it up into two parts. Here’s the first part:

If hip hop isn’t your genre of choice, you’ll still learn a lot of valuable tricks for mastering your mixes.

My multi-band compression preset I always start with is borrowed from Ian Shepherd, the Jedi mastering engineer behind Production Advice and many of the Meterplugs plug-ins like Dynameter, Perception, and Loudness Penalty.

And in fact, I have an exclusive hour-long video with him on mastering your mixes from your home studio that you can get as an exclusive bonus inside the new and improved Step By Step Mixing System.

Get exclusive access to Ian’s Expert Interview normally only available to our Insiders.

Here’s what you’ll learn from the interview:

  • What to think about when you master your mixes from your home studio
  • How to approach multi-band compression during mastering
  • How to set the threshold on your limiter
  • How to make your master louder while keeping the mix dynamic
  • How to know when to use EQ during mixing vs mastering
  • How to master for different formats like broadcast radio and sync libraries

Check it out here and get some invaluable tips for mixing your tracks and mastering your mixes.


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Free eBook: Get Better Mixes in Less Time When You Buy the Best-Selling Book Step By Step Mixing for Only $7!
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About me

About Audio Issues and Björgvin Benediktsson

At Audio Issues you’ll learn simple and practical audio production tips you can use right away to improve your music from your home recording studio.  Björgvin is the best-selling author of Step By Step Mixing and the founder of Audio Issues. He helps musicians and producers turn amateur demos into professionally produced records they can be proud to release.

We help home studio musicians and project studio producers make a greater musical impact in their lives by teaching them the skills needed to grow their hobbies and careers. We do this by offering simple and practical music production and success skills they can use right away to level themselves up – while rejecting negativity and gear-shaming from the industry. A rising tide floats all boats and the ocean is big enough for all of us to surf the sound waves.

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