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What sort of Album's budgets are you seeing?
Old 21st November 2009
  #31
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The MPCist's Avatar
 

---better not say----
Old 21st November 2009
  #32
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this is what i have been seeing, and I work with independent labels...

$350-500 per day for producer
$300-600 per day for studio

Rarely is it ever max for both.

Life as a producer/engineer sucks balls right now if you aren't making big records.

No one wants to pay for studio time, but are typically okay with paying the producer/engineer with respect.

Avg project is 7-21 days. From tracking to mix. Smaller labels/self funded=less days, larger labels/parent funded=more days.

Typically seeing 1-2 projects per month if lucky, 2-3 small jobs per month if lucky.

I am planning my escape now
Old 21st November 2009
  #33
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I see projects fom $5000 ....not realistic...to $50,000...everyone gets paid here but it's still tight ...for $2500 you can do a record...but you get 3 days to do it in....and day 3 is Low End mastering
Old 21st November 2009
  #34
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fossaree's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jindrich View Post
mike-661,

Was that a self-funded project or from a label instead?

Because the funny thing is that someone doing an album at a studio for 10k has a total production cost of €12k, as I've stated in the post above. But somebody paying €40k to a studio (mostly a label) to make an album, have production costs rising to.... €450,000!!!


Here are some rough numbers from a band recording an album at a commercial facility for some 45 days, and paying the studio €40k:

RECORDING
Studio bill.................................€40k
engineer+assistant....................€12.5k
producer...................................€25k
meals for 45 days, for 5..............€5k
hotel for 45 days, for 5...............€15k

TOTAL RECORDING BILL........................................................€97,500

MIXING+MASTERING+CD MANUFACTURE
Mixing the record..............................€20k
Mastering.........................................€2k
Pressing and distrib. 100k CDs............€50k

TOTAL MIXING+CD MANUFACTURE..........................................€72,000

PROMOTION
TV+Radio+News Marketing.................€220k
Basic video.......................................€10k

TOTAL PROMOTION...............................................................€230,000


TOTAL COST FOR LABEL ...........(97.5k+72k+230k)..........................€399,500


As the label might get around €9 per CD sold, that means that the record must sell AT LEAST 50,000 copies for the label to cover costs. The label hasn't made any money yet. Yes, 50,000 records sold at €9 each equal €450k, but there are €50k for the band (who gets €1 per CD), although they won't get paid until the label makes some profit.



Who'd have thought there's such a big difference between a €10k and a €40k Album.
This is pretty much out of reality for 90% of Gearslutz members (including me !)
Old 21st November 2009
  #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lord_bunny View Post
I do local work mostly and it varies from 3k Canadian for an E.P. to the top end of 10k. All of these budgets are raised by the band, not an indie label or major.

Small budgets but I live in a town where commercial realestate is undervalued in the older downtown area, and I've been buying gear for the last 15 years, so our overhead is realitively small and we're not running Protools HD.

I also haven't renovated the building for sound-isolation. Sometimes when the bus goes by we just have to do another acoustic guitar take... thankfully I only charge $30 an hour!
We are in the same boat. Small town Canada...independent artists paying out of their own pocket...3K to 5K on average. In and out. Many of my clients are gigging bands so they come in and play their music and go (1 or 2 weeks). Not many epic session scheds.

I certainly don't operate a "high-end" facility, but my clients can't afford that anyway. I run a PT Mix+ system with apogees and a small closet of decent mics. Commercial space is also next to free here so I have good sounding, spacious rooms.

I have been booked solid at $40/hr for some time now. I can't remember my last day off.
Old 21st November 2009
  #36
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Audio Hombre's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by oceantracks View Post

(PS...it's been my experience that a mix a day is an illusion...after everyone plays it at home, in their car, etc for a few days, half the time it's recalled and something is changed

TH
wrong. cla has been known to mix 4 songs in a day.
Old 21st November 2009
  #37
Quote:
Originally Posted by oceantracks View Post
Guys, what would you estimate is typical....in hours spent on tracking and mixing a single pop song today? Not rap, not hip hop, but a well produced guitar based pop record like anything from a Nickleback to an Avril single? Is a week per song about typical?
15 - 25 hours tracking per song
6 - 10 hours mixing

...might be an average
Old 21st November 2009
  #38
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by oceantracks View Post
Guys, what would you estimate is typical....in hours spent on tracking and mixing a single pop song today? Not rap, not hip hop, but a well produced guitar based pop record like anything from a Nickleback to an Avril single? Is a week per song about typical?

Just curious..

TH
Hmm.
Basic tracks/song: drums , bass, guit, keys (ie.the band) . 2hrs (excluding set up and soundcheck
Overdubs: bass, guit and keys depending on how big the production is. anything from 6hrs up) (meaning some arranging is done as doing the overdubs)
Vocals: leads an bv´s 2 to 4 hrs
Cleaning and choosing the right performance of the f..king (DAW) tracks takes AGES!
Mixing: from 4 hrs to 3 days depending on the mixer

I know this didn´t help.
Old 21st November 2009
  #39
Here for the gear
 

I used to be booked solid at 35-50/hour... Those days are long gone though. I could be booked solid at 25/hour, but can't live off of that $$$. Hence my escape.

Quote:
Originally Posted by los marbles View Post
We are in the same boat. Small town Canada...independent artists paying out of their own pocket...3K to 5K on average. In and out. Many of my clients are gigging bands so they come in and play their music and go (1 or 2 weeks). Not many epic session scheds.

I certainly don't operate a "high-end" facility, but my clients can't afford that anyway. I run a PT Mix+ system with apogees and a small closet of decent mics. Commercial space is also next to free here so I have good sounding, spacious rooms.

I have been booked solid at $40/hr for some time now. I can't remember my last day off.
Old 21st November 2009
  #40
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fossaree's Avatar
I'd say in my opinion , somewhere around 15 hours per music (inc. mixing) seems a regular basis .
Old 21st November 2009
  #41
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Tonio Ruiz's Avatar
things are not too different for me around here anyway, I do mostly rock, both heavy and pop rock for independent bands, not labels or anything, actually I don't think there is a decent small label that pays for a record

anyway, I also deal with small budgets from around $8k usd to $15k usd at the most... and that includes pre-production time, tracking, mixing, digital editing, producer fee, rentals, and god knows how but I save the most possible budget for a propper mastering that I send usually to US mastering studios

and the majority of bands around here are so small that they ask me to do records with (for real) $500 usd to $1500 usd budgets, I mean, come on!!! of course there are thousands of smaller or home/improvised "studios" that does take those budgets, I can't do that, is not even enough to pay the electric bill

even the big labels don't pay that much.

with my band we did 2 albums for EMI/Virgin, and things were so messed up with the industry that the budget we were being offered for the third album was pretty lame for a major label, it was about 20k for the whole thing, mastering included...

that's close to what I do as an independent producer

things are scary for us all, but hey, what else can we do? do we know something else? do we want to sell burgers, cars, real estate instead or something? everything is screwed up.

I love what I do, as a producer and with my band, we hope things will get better someday... maybe in this lifetime
Old 22nd November 2009
  #42
Quote:
Originally Posted by old_skul View Post
Do people actually still make albums? And buy CDs?
.

the answer is yes.

but it's a GREAT question...this was my knee-jerk reaction, too.

100k CDs for pressing and distribution....?

.
Old 22nd November 2009
  #43
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fossaree's Avatar
Lately , the majority of my clients are aiming their tracks for myspace ... It's not unusual to get works consisting in no more than 4 or 5 tracks ...
Old 22nd November 2009
  #44
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mwagener's Avatar
Around $75,000 for a full (10 to 13 song) album project. 100% pre-pay takes 25% off that rate. No extra producers fee, but $0.05 per song sold in Royalties. The rate includes pre-production, studio time, producing, engineering, mixing, use of all gear and materials (as in drives, drum heads, strings, project CDs etc.). Sometimes I include album artwork, booklets, maybe even a video, depends on the situation. Not included = mastering, 3rd party rentals, travel, food, lodging.

Mastering is around $1,500 to $2,000 depending on album, lodging is about $2,500 per month for a 3 bedroom apartment, plus food, rental car and travel.

A full album project takes about 60 days. I work 6 day weeks, Sundays off. If we go over (reasonably), it's on me, if we stay under it's on the client. All rates a block rates.

Projects are either major label, independent label, or band plus financial backing, rates are the same for either one, as is the quality, no demos or spec deals.

Single song projects or mixes are on a sliding scale, the more songs the better the rate per song.
Old 22nd November 2009
  #45
Quote:
Originally Posted by mwagener View Post

Around $75,000 for a full (10 to 13 song) album project.

{snip}

A full album project takes about 60 days.

{snip}
.

there's your answer - for the guy with his name on millions and millions of records.

...FWIW, most gearslutz - even in high end - do not walk in these shoes...a bunch do.

cheers, MW.....and rock on, dude!



.
Old 22nd November 2009
  #46
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Gretschman's Avatar
 

Cheap here

My friend got a well respected studio in town 3 weeks ago for $ 500 per day and $ 250 on weekends . Nashville is cheap !!

This is not good .
Old 22nd November 2009
  #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Fox View Post
I used to be booked solid at 35-50/hour... Those days are long gone though. I could be booked solid at 25/hour, but can't live off of that $$$. Hence my escape.
Even though I'm steady for bookings, I am only scraping by. What makes having a studio possible is my extreme low overhead. My studio rent is peanuts and I own all my gear. 80% of my $ goes to my home mortgage and a family, the rest to business upkeep (repairs, cables, studio bills, rentals, misc...)

$25/hr would not be possible for me either. Also, I don't see how anyone in an urban center could do it for less than $60/hr.
Old 22nd November 2009
  #48
Quote:
Originally Posted by carlheinz View Post
... the whole thing for $2500.00.
As long as that doesn't include duplicating a thousand CDs... sounds good to me.
Old 22nd November 2009
  #49
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Thank you Mr. Wagener for your honest response. You don't find many pros keen on publicly disclosure this sort of 'delicate' matter.

So after those numbers, you're charging $1,250/per day (block rate). Giving that your kind of studio typically goes for 400/day at most, you charge 850/day as a en engineer/producer. We can assume that pre-production, tracking and overdubbing take 50 days, with another 10 days for mixing and revisions. That means that having you mix (your own) production costs 12.5k.

With a 25% off (!) with upfront payment, which might be more the case with a band with financial backing than with labels -that pay as later as possible, it's $1,000/day, or say $350 for the studio and $650 for you, and around 10k for mixing (still, you might probably charge 25-50% more for mixing-only).
(I know all this itemization doesn't make much sense, you may still charge 1k/day working at other studios).

In all, those are pretty competitive rates for someone of your caliber.

Thanks again for posting this info. I don't know if you're too busy, but you might find more work (from EU bands at least) after posting this.
Old 22nd November 2009
  #50
Gear Head
 

most indie labels are not spending any kind of money in recording any more its just not in the budget to spend money if you get what im saying. I run a label on E1 (koch) and thank god I have been running my own studio since 2000. We track everything in house and send it off to get mastered. Our mastering is roughly 2k per album some times we have 3-4 albums that need to be mastered so we get a discount for providing work in this fu&&ed up day in age.

Also distributors ARE NOT pressing up hundreds of thousands of albums any more if your not moving major numbers

Case in point, we just signed an artist whos been in the game for a good minute, 1st album went gold in 2001, 2nd album did 200k in 2004 last album about 30-40k in 2007/2008. when we approched our distributor (E1) about this release they approved pressing 5000 cds. So how do you justify a "budget" when you know your only source of revenue for this artist is 5000 cds sold

so if we do the math, we get a good amount of $ per cd sold roughly 6-7 a cd sold depending on how you price your release. we are looking at a rough $30,000 if all 5000 are sold. Now the distributor will subtract roughly $1.50 a cd for co-op marketing. Taking our total to $22,500 now subtract the cost to manufacture 5000 cds (roughly $1 a cd) which brings us to $17,500. Now you cant honestly record, mix and master and promote an album effectivly for $17,000 unless your doing everything inhouse. I mean what kind of label wants to take all that time and resource to walk away with $3-4k profit hahahah. I mean thank god i have other sources of income or id be flat broke, I am someone who honestly does this because i love doing it. Trust me theres no money to be made selling cds anymore
Old 22nd November 2009
  #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by padaddyof3 View Post
I mean thank god i have other sources of income or id be flat broke, I am someone who honestly does this because i love doing it. Trust me theres no money to be made selling cds anymore
I´ve seen some studios colaborating with labels and making tv or web based shows with interviews , promoting new artists (also,even established ones) , therefore now , their incomings come basically after advertiser´s money !

Models of businnes in this industry are definitely changing !
Old 22nd November 2009
  #52
High End Moderator
 
mwagener's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jindrich View Post
Thank you Mr. Wagener for your honest response. You don't find many pros keen on publicly disclosure this sort of 'delicate' matter.

So after those numbers, you're charging $1,250/per day (block rate). Giving that your kind of studio typically goes for 400/day at most, you charge 850/day as a en engineer/producer. We can assume that pre-production, tracking and overdubbing take 50 days, with another 10 days for mixing and revisions. That means that having you mix (your own) production costs 12.5k.
I don't agree that "my kind of studio" goes for $400/day. You will be hard pressed to find a day rate of $400 for any million dollar studio.

Mixes, if they are not part of the project, are charged by the song, starting with $3000 for the first song, (because I still have to set everything up for the mix, even if it's just 1 song), and will level at $1,500 by song 4 and stay at that rate for the rest of the mix. The same 25% discount applies here too for a 100% prepay. No bank will give you such an interest rate heh The first song normally takes 3 days (including transfers etc.) after that it will be one song a day, never more than that, because I want the opportunity to listen with fresh ears the next morning. If the client is not present during mixing I probably will charge by the day, not by the song, total waste of time on my end.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jindrich View Post
With a 25% off (!) with upfront payment, which might be more the case with a band with financial backing than with labels -that pay as later as possible, it's $1,000/day, or say $350 for the studio and $650 for you, and around 10k for mixing (still, you might probably charge 25-50% more for mixing-only).
This is the more likely scenario. If any accountant can save about $20,000 on a project, they most likely will go that route. So keeping that in mind we are looking at $56,250 for a full album. That is $937.50 per day. I don't divide into producer or studio rate, it's a package deal.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jindrich View Post
(I know all this itemization doesn't make much sense, you may still charge 1k/day working at other studios).
I charge the same amount for "just" producing if the client wants to go to another studio, which basically never happens for the obvious reason, the 3rd party studio rate is on them.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jindrich View Post
In all, those are pretty competitive rates for someone of your caliber.

Thanks again for posting this info. I don't know if you're too busy, but you might find more work (from EU bands at least) after posting this.
Well, the studio and I are booked until September 2010, and two of those projects are coming from Europe. After all $56,000 are only € 33,600 and then the whole picture looks different again...
Old 22nd November 2009
  #53
Some typical brazillian budget:


Recording:

Small Studio: U$ 10 to U$ 30 per hour. 'Engineer' included.

Medium Studio: U$30 to U$100 per hour. Most of them including engineer.

Big Studio: U$100 to U$300 per hour. Some includes engineer.

Mixing:

Small Studio: U$ 20 to U$ 30 per hour.

Medium Studio: U$30 to U$100 per hour.

Big Studio: U$100 to U$300 per hour. Depends. I know a big one that can do the mix for U$120 an hour, one of the biggest studios in Rio, platin albuns.

Mastering:

Small Studio: U$ 100 to U$200 per entire album. U$ 20 per track.

Medium Studio: U$300 to U$400 per entire album. U$ 30 to 50 per track most of the times.

Big Studio: U$1000 to U$ 3000 per album. I know a grammy winner that master your album for U$1200. And another major studio here can do for U$700 (this one even got a vintage Fairman TMC, the only one in Brasil).
Old 22nd November 2009
  #54
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jindrich's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mwagener View Post
I don't agree that "my kind of studio" goes for $400/day. You will be hard pressed to find a day rate of $400 for any million dollar studio.
Mr Wagener, many thx for you input. I believe you are german and you must surely cross the pond from time to time and must therefore be aware of the situation of studios in germany, spain, france, UK,... etc (just like anywhere else actually).

Fact is, these days, you can book a stuffed 4048E/G+/Duality/VR studio built by some "name" acoustician for a standard rate of €500 per 10 hr day, assistant included, and 400/day if you book more than 20 days (add assistant at 30/day here). On the other hand, an AWS900 room without big mains, no piano and less sophisticated acoustics get lower rates (well, actually they get similar rates, but come with the owner-engineer in the price, someone in his late 30s early 40s with A LOT more experience and credits than a simple assistant). BTW, (deductable) VAT is not included in those prices.



Quote:
Originally Posted by mwagener View Post
Well, the studio and I are booked until September 2010, and two of those projects are coming from Europe. After all $56,000 are only € 33,600 and then the whole picture looks different again...
That is absolutely right. For the last 2 years with this €1=$1.5 currency exchange rate, doing productions in the US is getting cheaper than in the old continent itself.
Old 22nd November 2009
  #55
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fossaree's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Subversounds View Post
Some typical brazillian budget:


Recording:

Small Studio: U$ 10 to U$ 30 per hour. 'Engineer' included.

Medium Studio: U$30 to U$100 per hour. Most of them including engineer.

Big Studio: U$100 to U$300 per hour. Some includes engineer.

Mixing:

Small Studio: U$ 20 to U$ 30 per hour.

Medium Studio: U$30 to U$100 per hour.

Big Studio: U$100 to U$300 per hour. Depends. I know a big one that can do the mix for U$120 an hour, one of the biggest studios in Rio, platin albuns.

Mastering:

Small Studio: U$ 100 to U$200 per entire album. U$ 20 per track.

Medium Studio: U$300 to U$400 per entire album. U$ 30 to 50 per track most of the times.

Big Studio: U$1000 to U$ 3000 per album. I know a grammy winner that master your album for U$1200. And another major studio here can do for U$700 (this one even got a vintage Fairman TMC, the only one in Brasil).
Thanks for sharing our brazilian prices within this thread . Here in Sao Paulo is basically what you've above mentioned . Actually it show us how audio industry in Brazil earns us much less than in US and europe , for instance .
Kinda of sad , actually :-( .

I think I do know this guy you're saying though . Is he Homero ?

BTW , I've made a brazilian community on Gearslutz . Make sure you join us over there .

(Vamos fazer nossa classe unida , pois os gringos fazem direitinho isso , e por isso ganham grana !!! hehehe abs)
Old 23rd November 2009
  #56
High End Moderator
 
mwagener's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jindrich View Post
Mr Wagener, many thx for you input. I believe you are german and you must surely cross the pond from time to time and must therefore be aware of the situation of studios in germany, spain, france, UK,... etc (just like anywhere else actually).

Fact is, these days, you can book a stuffed 4048E/G+/Duality/VR studio built by some "name" acoustician for a standard rate of €500 per 10 hr day, assistant included, and 400/day if you book more than 20 days (add assistant at 30/day here). On the other hand, an AWS900 room without big mains, no piano and less sophisticated acoustics get lower rates (well, actually they get similar rates, but come with the owner-engineer in the price, someone in his late 30s early 40s with A LOT more experience and credits than a simple assistant). BTW, (deductable) VAT is not included in those prices.
So let's see: €500 is about $750 plus tax (I think it's 20% right?) = $900, that's without a main engineer or producer, so we're doing pretty good at $933/day including producer/engineer.

BTW, the acoustics in my room are excellent, better than 90% of all studios I have ever worked in. A "name" designer doesn't guarantee good acoustics, in fact I don't like most of those rooms.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jindrich View Post
That is absolutely right. For the last 2 years with this €1=$1.5 currency exchange rate, doing productions in the US is getting cheaper than in the old continent itself.
What I see more and more over here is that even very basic (almost bedroom) studios fetch around $1,000/day because the owner/producer/engineer has a great track record. The gear is not that important anymore, clients hire the person not the studio, I could be recording on a wire, as long as they like the outcome it doesn't matter. Do I want to have great tools, so it's easier to do a better job? Of course.
Old 23rd November 2009
  #57
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Michael, I'm sure your studio is great, I never wanted to imply otherwise. I was simply separating studio and engineer costs in the analysis, and therefore compared rates of similar facilities. I know it doesn't make much sense for the producer with own studio, like yourself, but the fact is that it DOES have a cost and a ROI to you -which is why some freelancers opt for not having one, specially when studio rates are in the toilet as it is nowadays.

BTW, regarding those rates, VAT is 100% deductible for any enterprise in the EU so it doesn't play any role (at the end of the year). On the other hand, we shouldn't base (rates) comparisons on whatever the daily exchange rate is, as domestic economies don't change because of this (price of salaries vs goods within the country). That only modifies buying power among different countries. If parity came back to the $ and €, only commercial balances would change.. and EU artists would not find so cheap to book US studios and producers, which they do choose to do not only based on price (35% discount because of currency issues is too big to ignore), but also because they might look for some "american sound" or whatever.


Wie auch immer. Ich glaube, wie gesagt, du kannst ein paar Bookings nach dieser Info einfach kriegen. I'll pass it along.
Old 23rd November 2009
  #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joelpatterson View Post
As long as that doesn't include duplicating a thousand CDs... sounds good to me.
No duplication.

I'd probably go for it IF it was with a group that played well together and something non overdub and punch-in intensive.This project is one multi-instrumentalist dude with a live drummer added on".Great drummar" though...

I think I'll Email Mr Wagner;s quoteheh....for a goof.
Old 23rd November 2009
  #59
Harmless Wacko
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by moracspace View Post
3 projects on the books this year 2010,ranging from 35,000 to 78,000.
All three projects are entire bands from pre production to final.
Mastering not included.
Very impressive numbers.

Astounding, really.

I took the time to look all your links over very carefully.

Wow. I can think of guys off the top of my head who have a bewildering advantage over you in terms of record making credentials, location, and total monetary investment who can't begin to touch that pure and simple prospectus in the current climate.

Basically: 3 bands averaging $50k each, all pre-booked and cast in stone.

What's your secret?

Witchcraft?

HOHOHO.

Seriously though... Those are amazing numbers for a shop your size in this day and age.

You should be pleased as punch.

SM.
Old 23rd November 2009
  #60
Quote:
Originally Posted by slipperman View Post
Very impressive numbers.

Astounding, really.

I took the time to look all your links over very carefully.

Wow. I can think of guys off the top of my head who have a bewildering advantage over you in terms of record making credentials, location, and total monetary investment who can't begin to touch that pure and simple prospectus in the current climate.

Basically: 3 bands averaging $50k each, all pre-booked and cast in stone.

What's your secret?

Witchcraft?

HOHOHO.

Seriously though... Those are amazing numbers for a shop your size in this day and age.

You should be pleased as punch.

SM.
.

i was thinking the same thing...

.
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