Originally Posted by Kenny Gioia
He gets what you give him and there's really no difference or preference.
What the Master Engineer would prefer is that your mix sounds as good as possible. EQing the master fader sounds the same as doing it on the individual faders. So he won't hear a difference.
Obviously you can mess it up by EQing it poorly with an overall EQ if you don't know what you're doing but you can do even more damage with the individual tracks if you don't do that correctly.
For example, if you make the hi hat really bright but make the vocal very dark, the mastering engineer can't fix that.
Well except "sounds as good as possible" is subjective and you could have already done the damage. For example if you take a lot of the bottom end out to compensate for a very wet bass sound (let's imagine an extreme case) then a kick will be lacking, something that can't be fixed in mastering. Granted, neither can the lacking bass but at least you only have one lacking element if you only mix that track badly....