Mastering is the final step in producing audio for mass production. In mastering the final product is fine tuned with the use of EQ and compression. Mastering engineers work to achieve a consistent audio level throughout the production. Mastering Engineers place the proper amount of space between tracks, insert track markers, and all other codes needed for final production. Mastering-engineers also clean up any unwanted noises.
A mastering engineer is typically hired by the producer and/or artist, or record company. They must be versed in the formats that final product will be distributed. These include, CD, vinyl, and digital. The mastering-engineer should be able to achieve a consistent sound across all formats. The mastering-engineer can also enhance the overall sound of the final product.
A mastering-engineer should have a solid educational background in the recording arts and extensive experience. A musical background is very useful as well as training yourself to listen critically. A mastering-engineer should be skilled in operating consoles, software, and current on mastering techniques.
To gain the experience needed to become a mastering-engineer, you should seek internships or employment at an audio post-production house. Having a background in recording and mixing is beneficial.
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