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How to hide settings in a mastering session?
Old 14th September 2020
  #61
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scraggs's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by darkalex View Post
I’m petulant? You guys are much more childish than me, you (the community) seem to treat a newbie in such a bashing way and expect that you’re gonna hear “Awwwwww, thanks!!!!!” ?!
Yeah, see...this is textbook petulance. No one is bashing you.

If you want to be a good mastering engineer you're gonna have to learn how to listen better.
Old 14th September 2020
  #62
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kludgeaudio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by scraggs View Post
If you want to be a good mastering engineer you're gonna have to learn how to listen better.
I will say that this is good advice for everyone, everywhere, at every time.
--scott
Old 14th September 2020
  #63
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darkalex's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushman View Post
Yes, sadly, you have posted right back in detail to prove it.
I don’t think this thread contains any bashing. I’m certainly not bashing you. All my hammers are still in the tool chest. I just checked.
But find a kinder place, where the sun shines brighter on the self-esteem generation. A “you’re always right” poster-friendly audio site. Be happy there!
If proving a point counts as childishness, sure I am the biggest one out there.

I don't know how you interpret bashing but these certainly sound like bashing to me:

"This is definitely me when I'm mastering..."

"Maybe suggest that the client can only listen to your master blindfolded in eyes wide shut-mode?"

"As a client, I wouldn't want to work with someone who displayed such a lack of trust in both me as a client as well as his own abilities"

"After I master the project I kill them, no worries about stealing my settings."

and many more.

I don't know your POV, but it certainly doesn't sound positive to me, they could've explained why not to do it, as many others did. I said, many of you who say let them see the settings, they cannot replicate, because two pieces of analog gear never sounds the same, I said I work fully ITB and it has its limitations, one can replicate the sound as is with exact settings, for sure no one can snatch my EQ'ing skills or my thoughtprocess behind doing anything, but they can get a direction to work upon my sound and build up from there, and no one cares whether a mix sounds like exactly as if I touched it or if another guy got it to sound similar like me at cheap, anyone would pick the other guy, that was what my problem was.

Other posters rather than memeing me out could rather explain the math behind than just saying pointless things. Anyways, audio is a big part of my life, but still is not my entire life, I've got upcoming exams to worry about.

Sorry if I came offensive, I had no intentions. Peace
Old 14th September 2020
  #64
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Thanks for all the inputs, really appreciable!
Old 14th September 2020
  #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darkalex View Post
Thanks for all the inputs, really appreciable!
Your “Thanks” is either tone-deaf to your recent writing, or an attempt at sarcasm. Maybe you are working on developing a sense of humor. That’s a direction you should consider traveling.
And look up “appreciable”. You probably meant “appreciated”.
Have a day!
Old 14th September 2020
  #66
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darkalex's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushman View Post
Your “Thanks” is either tone-deaf to your recent writing, or an attempt at sarcasm. Maybe you are working on developing a sense of humor. That’s a direction you should consider traveling.
Yeah sure.

As for sarcasm, You must be kidding, there were numerous other posters, who shared legit ideas on this thread, I meant to thank them.

As for Appreciated and Appreciable, Like Seriously? I am pretty sure most of the people understand the basics of English here, and easily interpreted the meaning behind what I said.

Now you're picking up things from sentences and what not to prove "who's the boss", you win, I lose. Fine? Hat's off to you for awesome demonstration of "petulant behaviour"

Anyways that's a good direction for you to become a grammar naz* too, and make a fool of others (actually yourself), keep it up, you'll level up way sooner than expected !
Old 14th September 2020
  #67
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Leaving all the crazy stuff and heat behind, I would seriously like to thank everyone who posted legit knowledge on my thread, thank you for so many varied perspectives on what I believed to be a common practise, surely it helped me change my POV about skills in Audio Engineering.

Your knowledge and wisdom surely helped me out, and is appreciated.

To everyone who posted legit content and insights from their vast experience, Cheers!

Thank you so much!
Old 14th September 2020
  #68
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You are welcome.
Old 14th September 2020
  #69
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Trakworx's Avatar
Alex. Come back and reread this thread in 10 years.

Bottom line is - trying to hide your methods from your clients is a bad idea, even if they are trying to copy you.

For one, you can't hide anything unless you do only unattended sessions.

Two, if they see you trying to hide things then it will only alienate them.

Three, and most importantly, knowing what techniques you used on one project, or even 10 projects, will not teach them when to use which technique, and by how much. That is your value as an engineer that they can't copy. You need to make yourself indispensable.

Also, just a point of fact. My friend attended a Ted Jensen session and he was using name brand gear and plugins. No mysterious black boxes. And he let my friend observe, ask questions and even take pictures. Because he's a confident person who knows it won't hurt him one bit. That's what to aspire to be.
Old 14th September 2020
  #70
Lives for gear
Just an ancient reference... In my experience, mostly on the West Coast, classic mastering rooms in the 70s-90s did not generally share their settings and equipment. A client might see the session sheets, but would not know details of the equipment being used. For example, I was in Bernie Grundman’s room once when he was still at A&M Records. Among the visible gear were two 1176 comp/lim units. There was no active session, so I didn’t see how heavily he hit them. Nonetheless, Aha! I knew from competing with him on various projects that he didn’t apply any obvious or clearly audible compression on the things I heard, but I assumed for decades that he was just touching into limiting to give him a tiny edge. I thought that for forty years, until a knowledgeable GSer wrote that Bernie NEVER compressed with the 1176, but liked the sound of the unit and used it as a line amp. I don’t know if that is correct, but the one “secret” I thought I knew about Bernie’s work in that room has at least a 50% chance of being incorrect.
A number of other rooms, including two of the rooms where I was employed, had re-worked the EQ they (we) used to have no gear IDs on visible panels.
There was a certain “Cold War” attitude toward sharing any secrets that were thought to give your facility an edge. From the responses in this thread, there seems to be less of that attitude now.
Old 14th September 2020
  #71
ccg
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Musiclab View Post
After I master the project I kill them, no worries about stealing my settings.
Somehow, as a client, I respect this.
Old 14th September 2020
  #72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccg View Post
Somehow, as a client, I respect this.
Dunno... I’d be a little reluctant to use him. It could kill your career.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #73
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kurzweil's Avatar
When I ask someone else to mix or master my work, it's because I know I'm the worst person to do it. Even the best artists-who-master usually have a fresh pair of ears next to them, and that's really what you're paying for. I know my work too well. I want someone to hear it for the first time and go:
"what is that doing there, you DUMBASS!!?"

Although I wouldn't recommend those precise words to use with your next client.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #74
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Let them see what they want. it is like students copying plug in or hardware setting to then realize that all processing is program dependent so compeletely useless if just replicated without any knowledge and understanding of WHY some settings are the way they are.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #75
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kludgeaudio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by audioloud View Post
Let them see what they want. it is like students copying plug in or hardware setting to then realize that all processing is program dependent so compeletely useless if just replicated without any knowledge and understanding of WHY some settings are the way they are.
That's why explaining to the customer is important. "I'm using this because you have a lot of sharp peaks in this recording that need to be controlled." Even half-assed explanations like "I'm doing this because your bass is mixed way off to the side... if we center it, it will sound louder since it'll be coming from both speakers, and then we can make everything else louder" are useful if it helps them understand that what you're doing is all because of what their recording is like.

Too many people seem to believe that mastering is just the process of running sound through a bunch of magical presets that make everything better. Showing them exactly what mastering really is about helps everyone.
--scott
Old 4 weeks ago
  #76
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kludgeaudio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kurzweil View Post
I know my work too well. I want someone to hear it for the first time and go:
"what is that doing there, you DUMBASS!!?"
That's why I always liked Don Grossinger... he was never afraid to call me a dumbass when I was one.
--scott
Old 4 weeks ago
  #77
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Adam Dempsey's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Trust and intellectual property are both real.

I've had zero issues with talking clients through their projects, although of course it's more about the why than the what. Any process without intent or taken out of context means little.

Last edited by Adam Dempsey; 4 weeks ago at 01:50 PM..
Old 4 weeks ago
  #78
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Jerry Tubb's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by kludgeaudio View Post
As a customer, I really want to do an attended session if at all possible, even if I know the engineer and he knows what I want, just so that I know exactly what is going on. I always learn more about my own work in one. As an engineer, I want to do an attended session just because that way I am absolutely sure where the customer's head is and what they're looking for. But this virus thing is really making that impossible
Yeah, that was our MO for 29 years, 10,000+ sessions.

Our entire philosophy was about having the client hang out & interact.

with many creature comforts... we built 1,000’s of client relationships, on mutual trust.

But, then the business changed, for multiple reasons...

tight budgets, traffic congestion, superfast internet bandwidth, DIY software, etc.

mostly spiraling overhead costs for a large facility, with less attending...

So I moved out to a country studio with low overhead on private property August 2019, and spent our 30th year working mostly online & alone, with rates changed from -per hour- to -per song- instead. maybe had 3-4 attended sessions, 200 unattended, gigabit internet speeds. occasionally i would meet someone for lunch at a local cafe to discuss the project.

Then in March 2020 the Covid thing hit... social distancing was already in place.

Do I miss the clients hanging out? Mostly Yes! we had lots of fun interacting.

But sessions would take much longer.... lots of discussions about this and that.

it’s much more efficient this way.

and we can talk on the mobile, or do a Zoom.

Noone ever asks about settings anymore...

99% percent approval of masters, with only a few touchups after the fact, personal preference stuff.

I did have a single last month where the client came back with the classic question:

“sounds great, but can you make it louder?”

so i did, +1.3dB did the trick !

cheers, jt
Old 4 weeks ago
  #79
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vernier's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by darkalex View Post
Hey Guys,

I had a question about ITB processing, for engineers who master in the box or hybrid, how do you make sure the client doesn't get to see the settings or techniques you use to get the master sound the way it is?

I've been thinking about this straight since once a client watches me mastering like 10 songs, they'll be aware of which tools I constantly use and in what ballpark are their settings, this is especially dangerous when the client is the mixer or the producer with sufficient know-how of what am I doing.

How do you guys manage this while making sure your secrets aren't out?

Please advise, Thanks!
Dummy rackmount gear next to your workstation should solve the problem.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #80
Here for the gear
 

Yeah the point seems to have been hammered home, but worrying about your clients (or anyone for that matter) stealing your settings is not really a valid concern to have. If it were, EVERYONE would have CLA (insert name here) level mixes at their fingertips, what with all of the presets available with Waves plugins etc.

They don't have your mind, your ears, or your tastes, regardless of whether they've copied your settings or not.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #81
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misjah's Avatar
 

Verified Member
i make them wear blindfolds
Old 4 weeks ago
  #82
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scraggs's Avatar
I once did a record for the Christian Science Church (it was as awful as you'd imagine)....they made ME sign an NDA. No one's gonna see the settings from that session....
Old 4 weeks ago
  #83
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kludgeaudio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by vernier View Post
Dummy rackmount gear next to your workstation should solve the problem.
No problem, I still have all those Orban 622s racked up anyway. Or you can get this:

--scott
Attached Thumbnails
How to hide settings in a mastering session?-masterizacion-y-corte-infopesa-copy.jpg  
Old 4 weeks ago
  #84
To the op,

Quote:
Originally Posted by darkalex View Post
what goes inside the Bernie Grundman consoles is only known to those chosen few, Bernie does not even tell which model of speakers they use except saying "Custom Tannoys"

...

You might be interested in These

Bernie grundman mastering workshop

https://mixwiththemasters.com/mws1

And

Mike bozzi

https://mixwiththemasters.com/mws5

much shared .

FWIW, I recognise your attitude in myself when I first started making and sending out underground club music in the uk.

I’d exhaust myself thinking about how I’m going to control the distribution of my music and illegal file sharing.

Then one day I saw a bootleg remix I did turn up on some random Japanese billboard dance chart ......and it made me totally rethink my attitude . it was totally beyond my control, i couldn't have placed my music in Japan and it made me happy.

IMO The old heads on here , have it right.We can't control everything

Come back in ten years and you’ll see your growth on this issue.

If someone stole your preset , f em. you should have learnt something new by the following week and elevated anyway...and they'll not have. you win!


Definitely stay on this forum, reading threads and listening...(and don't bother getting drawn down into personal jibes/arguments/indignances). I have learnt SOOOOOOO much from this forum, for which I'm v grateful


and the poster who said about letting negative people find their way out of your life is 100 on point.........live and let live , do you.

Good luck and keep grafting.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #85
I was mixing a record. It was me, the producer, and someone else that was a tag-along with the producer. At one point during the session I see this other person with a note book and a pen, writing down all of my settings. From every outboard compressor, eq, reverb, and delays. The only thing he didn't write down were the setting on the console. I just shook my head and chuckled under my breath. There was really nothing I could do about it. But intuitively I my thought was, this guy is about to get the letdown of his life if he thinks he's going to use my settings on his mixes and have them sound anything remotely good.

To me outboard gear is like plugins. They can copy all they want, but in the end it's not really going to help them to the point of being worth anything. They're going to find out real fast that presets don't work. Unless the presets are created by the person who is doing the work in the first place, and they're created for very specific and technical reasons.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #86
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Skamm Goodiez's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by angel72bg View Post
I have another experience.
I was allow to be wached and explain every move,then the client,open a own studio lower the price,and start doing what I did show to him.Now he has my 1/3 of my clients for less money.
You don't want these clients trust me
Old 4 weeks ago
  #87
Gear Addict
 
audiogeek1's Avatar
I have had zero issues with clients wanting me to show them my settings etc... I did have one even try to open up shop and compete. He purchased the same console, outboard, etc... In the end I purchased a few things very cheap to add to my set up.

I have been the assistant to a few big names. I copied settings and tried to use them myself. I found I could not make it sound like the guy I was assisting. There was a reason he was in the main chair. I did learn from those settings though. I learned a few things from each person I had the pleasure of assisting. But I think the biggest thing I learned was how they made the sessions flow or not. I took notes of what moved things along and what did not.

I also learned when to take breaks, move on, or go big. That was more valuable then the settings. I eventually found my path. I have students from the local universities that I mentor and teach. Each person needs to find their own path and sound.

Some very good points in the thread.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #88
Gear Maniac
 
angel72bg's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skamm Goodiez View Post
You don't want these clients trust me

Yes ,I already have an earring.No more teaching for free.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #89
Gear Addict
 
karibu's Avatar
 

One time I asked my great mentor:
"Aren't you concerned about me looking at all your techniques?"
And he simply answered:
"No, because you could be good as I am, so you deserve to get jobs, otherwise I will always be one who invent, and you one who copies."

And I got back home in a religious silence 🤣
Old 4 weeks ago
  #90
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kludgeaudio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by engmix View Post
To me outboard gear is like plugins. They can copy all they want, but in the end it's not really going to help them to the point of being worth anything. They're going to find out real fast that presets don't work. Unless the presets are created by the person who is doing the work in the first place, and they're created for very specific and technical reasons.
It's a cargo cult. They can build an airport out of bamboo and it looks just like the right thing, but the most important part is still missing. You can copy the operating settings and everything will look the same but the most important part isn't there.
--scott
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