Those unaware of mixing or mastering services will probably have doubts about the working of these processes. Lots of technical talks and knowledge leads even the most experienced professionals to feel confused, so that outside of the engineers themselves, few people know what happens during these final stages.
Moreover, this confusion leads to a lot of misconceptions— many consider these 2 processes the same, or eliminate them as not required one if the music composition is good to initiate. To clarify further, we’ll have a closer look at key factors and what difference these make to the music you listen to:
What Is Mixing?
In mixing, an engineer balances different tracks in a single session to make them sound good when played together. The tools used are equalizer, panning, compression, and reverb their disposal. Also mixing engineers cut-down instrumental clashes, constrict grooves, and highlight crucial song elements.
What Is Mastering?
In mastering, engineers do the eventual touches to a project from a bounced stereo file of the mix. The limitations of this file format are a chunk of what makes the mix phase crucial as there is a little bit to be done with a stereo recording. Although mastering engineers cannot bump into a project to create a kick drum, filter a synth, or uncover vocal parts, make broad enhancements and adjustments to the entire mix, in respect to the artist’s vision and market standards.
Which Is Important?
As per the opinion of many professionals working in the same field; Mixing is more important since a well-mixed song can stand on its own without mastering. It can perform well but it can’t stabilize a bad mix. Also, it can enhance a decent mix or improve a mediocre one, but if there are rooted problems in a mix itself, no amount of polish can fine those cracks.
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