Audio Mastering: the complete guide
What you'll learn
- Know the process of audio mastering
- Understand the importance and use of different audio processors
- Understand the basic processing chain for mastering
- Know the sonic effect of different processors while mastering
- Know the general settings on processors to start getting a better sound
- Know the standards for audio CD or web platforms (YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, etc.)
- You should have a basic understanding of any DAW (Pro Tools, Cubase, Logic Pro, Live, etc.)
- You should know how to insert audio plugins for processing in a DAW
- If you want to use hardware processors, you should know how to connect them to your audio system (optional).
- A good pair of monitors or headphones
We can describe mastering as the final process in audio and music production. In this stage, we optimize the track's mix and final volume to get a professional result. Mastering can improve the quality of a music production and get it ready for commercial distribution. This could be done for CD, TV, the Internet, video games, etc.
"A way of maximizing music to make it more effective for the listener as well as maybe maximizing it in a competitive way for the industry." -Bernie Grundman
"Mastering is the last creative step in the music production process, the bride between mixing and replication.. -Bob Katz
Mastering aims to make your audio sound properly on any kind of audio system, device or application (home system, earphones, club, theaters, etc.). A well-mastered song will have the right volume, avoiding those unpleasant volume changes from song to song. Mastering also brings more clarity and punch to the music, so it can compete with other professional productions.
In this new course, you will learn the most common audio processes for mastering music. The concepts learned in this course can be applied to any kind of audio project. All this knowledge comes from the experience of great mastering engineers, like Bob Katz, Greg Calbi, Bernie Grundman, Bob Ludwig, Doug Sax, among others.
With practice and patience while following the recommendations, you will get better results each time and your music will sound more professional and well-finished.
A course designed for a step-by-step approach
This course has been designed to be clear and effective. Each lesson explains the most important topics related to music mastering in a clear and direct way. You can study a couple of lessons in just 15 minutes each day! It takes you in a step-by-step process, from file selection to audio bouncing for CD or web platforms (Apple Music, Spotify, YouTube, etc.). The lessons include topics like:
Audio file Editing and noise reduction
Serial, parallel and multiband processing
Control and balance of stereo image
Stereo L-R vs M-S processing
Use of reverb and harmonic enhancers in mastering
Limiters and levels for CD and streaming platforms
Loudness, LUFS and dBs
All these techniques can be applied on any music style: Pop, rock, latin, hip-hop, EDM, urbano, ballad, country, etc. The information in the course is also valuable for other kinds of audio productions, like:
Video game audio
Audio for Video
Audio for mobile or web Apps
At the end of the course, you will get the knowledge and examples to start mastering your own songs and music productions. You will know how to use your available audio plugins (VST, AU, AAX, etc) in a mastering setup.
You only need any DAW (Logic, Pro Tools, Cubase, Ableton Live, etc.) and its native processors (plugins) to get started!*
Current students comment:
"A very complete course. Perfectly explained, there was no need to review again one lesson since it is explained on detail with visual examples and documentation. It is important that you must practice to improve your ear and be able to fully master the audio mastering." Daniel Hurtado
"This was just what I was looking for. I got a clear basic picture of what is the mastering process order and tools for it. Now it's up to me to start using it in practice, but at least I have a good basic course done as a foundation." Juha Mäkelä
"I am blown away by this course! By lesson 12 and using 12-year-old Garageband 09', I have been able to improve the quality of my very amateur indie tracks that I plan to release after this course." Lake Smith
You will be guided by a certified audio instructor, with more than 18 years of teaching experience at all levels, from seminars to college-level classes and a top instructor on Udemy, so academic quality is guaranteed. Join more than 12,000 students worldwide and learn more about audio!
*The course shows the use of specialized mastering processors, like iZotope Ozone, yet the use of these processors is optional.
**Este curso también está disponible en español.
Who this course is for:
- Music producers
- Sound engineers
- Film and video editors
- Video game developers
- Anyone who works with audio and needs better sound quality
Marco Galvan has been active in the music and audio business for more than 18 years. He holds a B.Eng with a major in Acoustics from the National Polytechnic Institute. He is a professional musician, arranger and composer with studies at Berklee College of Music and he holds Certificates in Music Theory and Keyboard Performance from the ABRSM and Trinity College London. In the audio field, he studied at Alchemea College in London and holds several certifications like: Pro Tools User, Meyer Sound System Design, Nexo and DiGiCo operator among others.
Currently, he works as a Dolby Atmos Mixing and Mastering engineer and as an Associate Professor at Anahuac University, with more than 18 years of teaching experience. Many of his former students currently work for companies like: Sony Music Entertainment (Grammy Award winner), Televisa, TV Azteca, OCESA, Meyer Sound; and for international Latin artists like Emmanuel, Carlos Vives and Alexander Acha, performing in world-class events like Festival Viña del Mar.
The recommended order to take his courses from zero is:
- Audio Engineering fundamentals
- Acoustics for the Home Studio
- Audacity for beginners
- Applied Modern Harmony
- Introduction to DAWs using Reaper
- Audio Equalization techniques
- Audio Compression techniques
- Audio Effects and Processors
- Basic principles of Music Mixing
- Audio Mastering
Marco Galván ha estado activo en la industria de la música y el audio por más de 18 años. Tiene el grado de Ingeniero con especialidad en Acústica por el Instituto Politécnico Nacional. Es músico, arreglista y compositor profesional con estudios en Berklee College of Music y cuenta con certificados en Teoría Musical y Teclados por la ABRSM y el Trinity College London. En el terreno del audio cursó estudios en el Alchemea College de Londres y tiene diversas certificaciones como: Operador Pro Tools, Diseño de Sistemas Meyer Sound, Operador Nexo y DiGiCo entre otras.
Actualmente labora como ingeniero de mezcla y masterización Dolby Atmos, y como profesor asociado en la Universidad Anáhuac, con más de 18 años de experiencia docente. Muchos de sus antiguos estudiantes trabajan para compañías como Sony Music (ganador de premio Grammy), Televisa, TV Azteca, OCESA, Meyer Sound; y para artistas internacionales como Emmanuel, Carlos Vives y Alexnder Acha, actuando en eventos de clase mundial como el Festival Viña del Mar.
El orden recomendado para tomar sus cursos desde cero es:
- Fundamentos de ingeniería en audio
- Introducción al uso de DAW's con Reaper
- Home Studio para principiantes
- Acústica para Home Studios
- Armonía y teoría musical aplicada
- Introducción a la improvisación musical
- Uso de consolas mezcladoras
- Uso de consolas digitales de audio
- Técnicas de ecualización
- Técnicas de compresión
- Efectos y procesadores de audio
- Beat making en Pro Tools
- Fundamentos de Pro Tools
- Producción Musical en Logic Pro
- Principios de la mezcla musical
- Masterización de audio