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Around "400 - 700 EUR" Mastering Facilities
Old 1st September 2011
  #1
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Around "400 - 700 EUR" Mastering Facilities

I have experience with some online mastering facilities in the range from 250 - 700 EUR per project and I heard A/B stuff from a bit pricier ones like Sterling Afterhours, Abbey Road online, Dave Collins...

I have mixed feelings about some (very friendly but not always very succesful) online mastering guys, while I did like most of what I heard from the "big shots".

I have a client that I just finished mixing - contemporary rock with a lot of guitars and synths - 70+ tracks projects, etc - (too) massive production - that I would like to have mastered on a bit higher level, but the problem is they can't afford 1000EUR+ fee for mastering. They won't be too cheap about it- but aiming at reasonable costs around 400 - 700 EUR.

I don't want to go down the road to some 4x revisions and still not feeling OK about it... I will actually let the clients contact the mastering houses themselves, but since they are clueless about where to go and I can't suggest wholeheartedly any of those I already tried out, I ask for some more names. Don't send me PMs - just suggest those that you think do high level mastering in the range of ca. 500 - 700 EUR per 10 songs/ca.50min. project. I'll check the websites and further the recommendations.

Who is into warm and hot sound? I don't like kitschy widening, I don't like thin plastic high end boosts, I don't like messing around with stereo field and audible MS gimmicks, I want natural sound, fat mids and smooth high-end (within what the mix allows of course); the level for that kind of music can be on the loud side - within reason, but competitive loudness - think current Duran Duran - "All you need is now" album... Yeah, I know - that was mastered by Ted Jensen... but anyway...

I was looking into "24-96 mastering" member here and his enterprise looks interesting from the credits and the A/B examples... I will suggest his name to them, any other hints?
Old 1st September 2011
  #2
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24-96 sounds like a good bet...
I have no 'direct' experience with him but judging by some of the releases , I think Steve Berson could be well worth looking into on the 'natural and smooth' side of things.

http://totalsonicmastering.com/master.htm
Old 1st September 2011
  #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by huejahfink View Post
I have no 'direct' experience with him but judging by some of the releases , I think Steve Berson could be well worth looking into on the 'natural and smooth' side of things.

http://totalsonicmastering.com/master.htm
Hey, that's a super hint. Thanks!

I never heard about him and I would never have found it myself just browsing randomly... I will further this recommendation for sure.
Old 1st September 2011
  #4
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On here his name is "Cellotron".
Old 1st September 2011
  #5
I've heard work from Robin 24-96 and I can highly recommend him
Old 1st September 2011
  #6
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I've no idea of his prices, but I'm familiar with Jon Astley mainly through his work for Tori Amos, some of her albums are pretty "warm and hot sound"ing. Scarlet's Walk is one of my favourites for sure. Very thick gorgeous mids on that.

Close To The Edge

A couple of engineers on here have had great things to say about his work from personal experience, and he's worked with loads of the rock-n-roll greats. Got to be worth a call I would say.....
Old 1st September 2011
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by huejahfink View Post
I've no idea of his prices, but I'm familiar with Jon Astley mainly through his work for Tori Amos, some of her albums are pretty "warm and hot sound"ing. Scarlet's Walk is one of my favourites for sure. Very thick gorgeous mids on that.

Close To The Edge

A couple of engineers on here have had great things to say about his work from personal experience, and he's worked with loads of the rock-n-roll greats. Got to be worth a call I would say.....

Oh, this looks super serious, but I doubt he falls within ca. 700 EUR limit...

"Cellotron" you say, I noticed his posts around here and I liked his style of debate and ideas.

Also Thomas W.Bethe and Waltz mastering included on the list of suggestions.
Old 1st September 2011
  #8
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Well if you get a price from Jon Astley I'd be interested to hear about it...

Yeah I've always thought Cellotron seems a pretty straight-up, serious engineer from his posts...
Comes across very confidently on technical talk without any ego BS.
Old 1st September 2011
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by huejahfink View Post
Well if you get a price from Jon Astley I'd be interested to hear about it...

Yeah I've always thought Cellotron seems a pretty straight-up, serious engineer from his posts...
Comes across very confidently on technical talk without any ego BS.
Regarding Jon Astley - The Who, Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, Peter Gabriel, Tori Amos, etc. as clients... This seems way out of my (and that band's) league, hehehe... so I probably won't bother him... Probably it's not Bob Ludwig's pricing, but still... let's be realistic - we are talking about ca.700 EUR... that's not in that league. But there are so many cool guys with serious equipment and experience, no need to get star-struck...
Old 1st September 2011
  #10
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Both Robin & Steve know their ****.
I would recomend both any time Unless i'm getting the gig
Ed
Old 1st September 2011
  #11
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Having read your comments I recommend attending if you can, Robin is not too far away from you if I am not mistaken. Take the trip.
Old 1st September 2011
  #12
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Originally Posted by Riccardo View Post
Having read your comments I recommend attending if you can, Robin is not too far away from you if I am not mistaken. Take the trip.
It's not in my hands, but I would seize the opportunity to attend if it would be my project... As it is, I will only further the recommendations.

Thanks to all for all the info and suggestions.
Old 2nd September 2011
  #13
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"Jon is offering an attended mastering for just £500 an album for anyone whose project is entirely self funded" "no record label or publishing support"

SOS - January 2011 digital edition

Really has to be worth a call...... the guy's got the cred.
Old 2nd September 2011
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by huejahfink View Post
"Jon is offering an attended mastering for just £500 an album for anyone whose project is entirely self funded" "no record label or publishing support"

SOS - January 2011 digital edition

Really has to be worth a call...... the guy's got the cred.
Wow, that's so cool of him to do such a thing. But how can he find time and the will to do something like that? Is the state of mastering really at such a low point?

It is true that mastering has a very fast turnaround - only a day of work for an album, while in mixing that's used only on one song and sometimes not even that happens in one day, but still...

I think I'll try to contact him for my personal project, which is completely self-funded and no label behind it... attending at a mastering session with such a guy, for such a price... It's a learning opportunity, too... It's only a question how long the waiting line is...

I got so many cool suggestions here that I will forward to the guys and I thank you all again.
Old 2nd September 2011
  #15
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PM sent.
Old 3rd September 2011
  #16
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Well maybe it's not so easy having so many previous A list clients and being a one-man-show. I think your previous comment about "out of my league" sums that up pretty well.

I can't imagine the guy is doing badly - but this seems like a smart move to help fill up the holes in the booking diary. Plus the unsigned of today could be the A listers of tomorrow, so he's getting his foot in the door with those acts that aren't about to retire or haven't already!
Old 23rd September 2011
  #17
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We were recently looking to get an album mastered & were pretty close to going with Kevin Metcalfe at Soundmasters till I saw mention of the unsigned band offer from Jon Astley.
While I'd also love to have heard what Soundmasters could have done, our very tight budget & the opportunity to attend eventually made the decision for us.

The session was this week & the experience was all good. Jon did a great job & was a pleasure to sit in with.
He also offered without prompting to master an extra track not on the album for me at no extra charge.

Having listened at home we've requested some minor revisions & he is more than happy to do whatever is required to get the best result including working with a couple of revised mixes.

One thing some people may find odd is the total lack of acoustic treatment in Jon's room. It is a light, airy & mostly wood panelled room with a grand piano & couch at the back & Jon sit's pretty close to his PMC monitors while working.
I figured if it's good enough to win awards for remastering The Who then it's good enough for me
Old 13th October 2011
  #18
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PM sent with details!
Old 7th November 2011
  #19
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Check out ONE MILLION MANGOS

It can be in your price range. In fact it can be in any price range because it's pay what you want, including €0 if you don't like the results.

Previously was kronier audio for around €500 10 track album.

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