Originally Posted by mrmike186
Would you use a different analyzer for mastering than one for let's say comparing bass guitar to a bass drum?
There are different analyser settings. Generally you can vary between speed, resolution and smoothing.
Usually a setting of intense smoothing and very low speed is called mastering setting, but imho that doesn't really mean much. If you have one analyser where you can change the settings yourself (e.g. Voxengo span) you only really need 1 analyser.*
E.g. 1 drumloop here (obviously speed can not be seen on a picture...):
All with a linear slope, rather than a flat one....
normal resolution, quick speed
good for a general idea
high resolution and low speed
good for exposing detail (took the screenshot a bit too late so the kick is missing)
High resolution with smoothing, low speed (often called mastering analyser)
I find that one quite helpful sometimes, if you need to eq 2 sounds so they don't conflict, because you can see where most of the frequency spectrum is occupied.
I wouldn't pay a mastering engineer so he can look at a fancy spectrum analyser though, I pay him so he can use his experienced ears and get the mix ready for distribution.