Opinion on my Master needed!

Svemir

Member
Hi guys!

After some time working with Ozone9 I think I have reached a decent master now, what do you think about it?

Please tell me if for you is too compressed or needs some compression, if the EQ sounds ok to you, and how's the dynamic and the separation of the instruments, the stereo field etc..

I know the volume is pretty high, I did it as it would be for a CD/Vinyl and not for streaming websites, I might make another version with less LUFS for Spotify and stuff, for now I'm interested about the audio quality.

The only thing is that it seems to be a bit squashed? I set the threshold limiter at -11.2db which to my ears it sounds like the same volume as the reference track I'm using.
But I think the drums transients are hitting the threshold too much as you can see from the waveforms, so gets distorted and squashed.
Now I didn't use that much compression on my tracks cause I use amp sims plugins and midi drums which should be already compressed enough from what I've heard.
So if I turn down the Threshold fader from -11 to -4 the peaks are not happening anymore but the volume disappears!!!
So what's the solution here? Place a limiter on the drums track? COmpress more the overall track?


1627373571607.png

Here's the link, please notice the first part is more quiet then at the end it explodes with distorted guitars.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/115FzjRXH4Hl-t63LxQv5ZdHnecfZZN32/view?usp=sharing



Thanks a lot in advance!
 

Papanate

Active member
I like the track - but it's kind of a mess - things are walking over each other - like the pad thingy is way to loud compared to the guitar -
and when you get into the song everything is mix hot without dynamics.
 

Svemir

Member
mm what a mess :D I don't understand what do you mean with dynamic? it seems to me that's quite dynamic, indeed the first part of the song is much more quiet compared to the second one, and the explosive part, if I increase the dynamic too much from the quite part to the explosive part the listener will have to stand up to turn the volume down cause the volume would raise too much from a section of the song to the other.

Anyway from the limiter it seems there is too much dynamic! the opposite! In fact I can see lots of spikes when the drums kick it.
The problem is that is too hot but the volume is the same as other artists official songs.
So what should I do? COmpress more? I think I'm gonna give up with this mastering thing and pay someone is way too difficult.
I don't have a meter of judgment, what to me sounds good, to the others is squashed or distorted, so I probably still don't have the ears trained to be able to say it's good or not that's the problem. Or maybe cause I'm mixing with headphones at home.
 

TalismanRich

Well-known member
I'm curious about what you are using for your "reference". Is it smashed like that? The beginning was fine, but the last minute or so is just this wall of sound, but harsh and distorted. You can't just look at a meter and a number and make something sound good. You first want to LISTEN to it.

You probably need to start by limiting individual instruments to some degree. A master limiter can't tell the difference between a kick, a bass or a synth line. It just looks at the level and says "turn it down now". Dynamics can be controlled in several ways. People used to ride the gain throughout the track. They might bring up the quiet bits so they don't get lost in the noise, or pull down the fader during loud parts.

A good example might be A Day In The Life. You have the same type of situation with quiet parts building up to climactic end. It's still clear, and you can hear the elements cleanly, even when the orchestra is hitting the peak melee.
 

Svemir

Member
I'm curious about what you are using for your "reference". Is it smashed like that? The beginning was fine, but the last minute or so is just this wall of sound, but harsh and distorted. You can't just look at a meter and a number and make something sound good. You first want to LISTEN to it.

You probably need to start by limiting individual instruments to some degree. A master limiter can't tell the difference between a kick, a bass or a synth line. It just looks at the level and says "turn it down now". Dynamics can be controlled in several ways. People used to ride the gain throughout the track. They might bring up the quiet bits so they don't get lost in the noise, or pull down the fader during loud parts.

A good example might be A Day In The Life. You have the same type of situation with quiet parts building up to climactic end. It's still clear, and you can hear the elements cleanly, even when the orchestra is hitting the peak melee.
check out the reference

 

TalismanRich

Well-known member
There's a difference between your reference and your track, especially in the bass/drum layer. You have significantly more bottom end. Get that part clear and even, then start to add in the other elements. Remember, you don't have to use ALL the elements at a constant volume all the time. back things down a bit so you get some distinction, and don't worry that you have everything maxed out. That's not the objective here.

I did try to listen to some Mogwai stuff to see if it was representative of that style. It was, and frankly, it's not my cup of tea. Its a bit like some of the metal stuff that I can't listen to for more than a few minutes. I'm probably not the best person to figure out how to mix that type of music. I guess I left my angst/aggression phase too many years ago, although I still like to rock some Deep Purple, Dio, Electric Boys, etc.
 

Mickster

Well-known member
IMO way too smashed and crunchy!!! Had to quit it about at 2:30. Too harsh to listen to....not to mention exceedingly repetitive and boring. Genre and content aside......the master needs lots of work IMO only. No one adjustment is going to be the answer. When you are measuring your LUFs reading...are you looking at integrated or max peak?

Ok....so it's not my cup of tea and I probably shouldn't be commenting.

Mick
 

Svemir

Member
IMO way too smashed and crunchy!!! Had to quit it about at 2:30. Too harsh to listen to....not to mention exceedingly repetitive and boring. Genre and content aside......the master needs lots of work IMO only. No one adjustment is going to be the answer. When you are measuring your LUFs reading...are you looking at integrated or max peak?

Ok....so it's not my cup of tea and I probably shouldn't be commenting.

Mick
Hi Mickster, of course if you are not confident with the genre maybe you are not ino post rock and metal, I'm afraid when you say harsh you are referring to some bad frequencies or simply you don't like metal distorted and violent sound? So not sure whether your opinion is technical or just your taste. check out the reference and tell me if that sounds harsh you you.
 

Mickster

Well-known member
Yes.....I should have been a bit more clear. I was referring to some frequencies in your track being harsh. It's also difficult to outline which ones could be the offenders......although I think it's the smash compression effect that's causing most of the issues I don't care for. Keep in mind...this is just my opinion of course.

I don't think the reference track is very similar IMO.

Mick
 

Papanate

Active member
Hi guys!

After some time working with Ozone9 I think I have reached a decent master now, what do you think about it?

Please tell me if for you is too compressed or needs some compression, if the EQ sounds ok to you, and how's the dynamic and the separation of the instruments, the stereo field etc..

I know the volume is pretty high, I did it as it would be for a CD/Vinyl and not for streaming websites, I might make another version with less LUFS for Spotify and stuff, for now I'm interested about the audio quality.

The only thing is that it seems to be a bit squashed? I set the threshold limiter at -11.2db which to my ears it sounds like the same volume as the reference track I'm using.
But I think the drums transients are hitting the threshold too much as you can see from the waveforms, so gets distorted and squashed.
Now I didn't use that much compression on my tracks cause I use amp sims plugins and midi drums which should be already compressed enough from what I've heard.
So if I turn down the Threshold fader from -11 to -4 the peaks are not happening anymore but the volume disappears!!!
So what's the solution here? Place a limiter on the drums track? COmpress more the overall track?
It kind of hurts my ears.
 
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