ABOUT THE AUTHOR / VIDEO SERIES CREATOR
Hello my name is John Rogers, owner of JR Mastering. I’m one of the most successful online mastering engineers, having worked with over 7,500 highly satisfied clients on now over 40,000 songs since 1999.
During my career I’ve worked with a handful of Grammy nominees, several songs I’ve mastered went top 5 on the European billboard charts. I’ve mastered hundreds of songs for movie soundtracks, and for DJs who played them in clubs all over the world.
My debut book, Audio Mastering Secrets, is one of the first audio mastering books on the market that focuses entirely on “How to master audio to radio quality standards,” all from the comfort of your home studio. No expensive gear required to get amazing results!
I also have a video series that will teach you how to master your style of music in under TWO hours!
Note - If you're looking for someone to mastering your songs (and don't want to learn yourself), visit my website JR Mastering.
ABOUT THE BOOK
It focuses on how to master audio, how to become a great audio mastering engineer, and how not to be a bad one. I don’t get into the specifics of brands of gear you should buy, the history of audio mastering, 1,000’s of compressor settings (of which maybe 40 you’ll ever use), or a dozen pages on how to sound proof your room.
If you’re looking for that information, there are several other books on the market that explain those topics very well.
In audio mastering, you will face common problems like a mix being too thin, tinny, distorted, over-saturated, muddy, or not bright enough. Sometimes you can’t get the song loud enough, boomy enough, no separation, too much bass, no sparkle, and many other problems.
I explain in detail which effects processors to use and their exact settings to solve these common problems. This is a great tool to refer back to when needed.
Not entirely on theory, what I learned in school, what I heard from some other engineer, etc. I’ve mastered over 40,000 songs for over 7,500 highly satisfied clients. Why is this important?
1. Because I know the techniques and secrets that I’m teaching work very well! The proof is in the thousands of positive email testimonials I’ve received.
2. I also know which problems and situations arise very often, and which ones never happen at all. Knowing this allows me to focus only on what you will actually experience when working on an audio mastering project. Someone who hasn’t worked with a large number of customers won’t even know what areas to focus on
Here’s where I break down the sonic qualities of sixteen different genres. How much brightness, bass, boominess, compression, etc., you’re trying to achieve for each genre. And several tips on what clients are looking for. This is a great tool to refer back to if you don’t know the sonic qualities of all the different genres very well.
In this section, I cover a series of do’s, don’ts, and facts that basically apply to all audio mastering jobs regardless of genre. I also cover several pitfalls you will experience (just like I did) as an audio mastering engineer, and how to get through them.
After reviewing hundreds of masters and re-masters from other online studios, I’ve found that most sound engineers don’t know how to properly use compression. A lot of them never use it at all! This causes their songs to break up badly during loud playback. In this book, I cover everything you need to know about compression in audio mastering. I eliminate 95% of the needless threshold/ratio combinations, which makes the entire process much simpler.
Setting Up You're Listening Environment
In this section I cover calibrating your speakers, learning your speakers, speaker placement and room size. And, the myth about soundproofing your room.
The basics of what they all do, how to use them, when to use them, and my initial settings templates.
I cover a handful of important must-know facts if you’re working with clients. Why lose jobs learning on your own (trial and error). Learn from my past mistakes!
I left out all the high-tech jargon and rarely used words that slow down sentence flow. I want everyone to learn how to properly master audio, while not having to try and figure out what I’m trying to say! Ha!
In this book I cover audio mastering FAQs, definitions, concepts, and procedures. I also talk about working with sonic qualities, A/B comparison, working with 4-BAND processors, creating headroom and dynamic range, evaluating the mix, protecting your hearing, EVERYTHING I’ve learned in the last 17 years!
In a matters of weeks, you can learn all of the audio mastering secrets, tips, and techniques that took me over 17 years to learn!
Or with my video series, learn in only TWO hours!!
If you started audio mastering and learning on your own this year, by 2034 you might learn everything that’s in this book and video series. Ha! Why not just make a small investment and start learning right now!
Check out two of my best articles -
Here's a list of the best mixing technique articles written by me, John Rogers of JR Mastering.
Music Mixing Mistakes
Common mixing mistakes and how to fix them.
How To Prepare Song For Mixing
How To Create Headroom In Your Mix
Setting Mixing Levels For Each Instrument
How To Set Mixing Levels
How Should Your Mix Sound Before Mastering?
How To Mix Songs
Here's a list of the best mastering technique articles written by me, John Rogers of JR Mastering.
What Does Mastering Do To Your Song?
Exactly what does the mastering process do to a song.
Why Get A Song Mastered?
Is it just a waste of time to get your music mastered?
What Is Headroom In Audio?
The definition of headroom in music.
Why Is Headroom Important?
Do you really need headroom in your mixes before mastering?
How Much Headroom To Leave For Mastering?
Here's the exact amount of headroom you need!
Here's how your songs should sound!
Mastering A Song For Radio Play
Get your tracks ready for the radio!
Should I Go To School For Audio Engineering?
Is Engineering school really needed?
Prepare Song For Mastering
Here's all you need to know!
How To Master A Song
The basics of how to properly master a song.
How Do You Calibrate Studio Monitors?
The easy way to properly setup your studio monitors.
Speaker Placement For Your DAW Home Recording Studio
After calibration, here's the proper positioning for your speakers.
Sound Proofing Your Recording Studio
Sound proofing isn't all it's cracked up to be.
Best Recording Studio Room Size
Here are a few tips on choosing your recording studio size.
MY TOP GEAR REVIEW ARTICLES
I had to write a quick note on this, as I was reminded about it while thumbing through a popular mixing book that had a 15 page section on speaker resonance and room sound proofing. I must say, a very exciting 15 pages! Ha!
Way too much is made out of room sound proofing! I can audio master songs to perfection in an untreated basement, a huge studio room, in a bathroom, anywhere. I've done it all before. I can even master in my own backyard, with no walls!
Now, I would have to listen to a few reference tracks to learn a new environment. And some client feedback might be required. But after a couple hours, I could master anything in any space. At least 15,000 of the songs I've mastered were done in an untreated room. And my clients LOVED them all!
The proof is in the number of highly satisfied clients I've serviced, over 7,500. And the THOUSAND who were totally blown away by what I did with their music. You don't need foam or sound proofing on your walls. The important thing is to learn your environment, whatever it is.
If you want some foam or acoustic treatment in your room, buy it. You'll still have to learn how the room sounds after you install it. My point is you don't need it for audio mastering.
I've gotten in hundreds of remaster jobs that were originally mastered at studios with thousands of dollars worth of foam on their walls, and these masters were HORRENDOUS! A mash of distorted noise trainwreck! The foam did a lot of good here. Ha!
I initially mix and master at a lower level. I keep levels around 80-90dbs. I listen 10-15 minutes at these levels, then take a 5-minute break. I will do this for between 2-4 hours, then I take a full two-hour break.
When it comes time for the finalization (loud listening @ 105-110dbs) I NEVER go more than 2-3 minutes continuous and I pretty much split time. If I listen to loud music for 5 minutes, I take a 5 minute break before starting up again.
Above is what I've doing since 1999 and it works for me. Maybe you can go 100dbs for 8 hours a day and never have a problem, but I'm not risking it. 105-110dbs for 30 minutes continuous ruined my ears pretty good, and I had to make sure they didn't get any worse.
Tinnitus isn't fun. I might be going overboard a bit with my silence rests, but it's working for me. Better safe than sorry with tinnitus because it lasts A LIFETIME!
THE GUINEA PIG EXPERIMENT
I read a study online where a scientist exposed guinea pigs to extremely loud music. The results were that the guinea pigs who listened to extremely loud music continuously, say for 30 minutes, had severe structural damage to their internal ears.
The guinea pigs who listened to the same extremely loud 30 minutes of music, but it was not continuous (roughly 2 minutes of music and then a 2 minute break), the damage to their internal ears was FAR LESS severe compared to the first group.
Now remember, both groups listened to music the same total time (30 minutes). But, continuous listening was far more damaging than intermittent listening.