FAQ's

How do I upload files for mastering?

Here's how to upload your files to us in 3 easy steps:

Step 1 - Zip up your song file(s). Upload to Dropbox.com or Wetransfer.com. Email the link(s) in one email to nadamastering@gmail.com.

Step 2 - Send us your payment via PayPal to nadamastering@gmail.com or send a check/money.

Step 3 - Wait for us to send your masters back via Dropbox.com or Wetransfer.com! It's that easy! You WILL have your mastered tracks back in 5 days or less!!


What is the best way to prepare songs for mastering?

It is usually always best to have your recording engineer prepare your songs for mastering by removing all of the processing on the master buss of each song. When sending in songs for any mastering service it is best to send them in the same bit depth/sample rate the original sessions were recorded at. For example, if the session was recorded at 24-bit 44.1kHz, send us the unmastered files at those bit depths/sample rates. Remember, the highest bit depth/sample rates equal higher quality masters.


The audio file to the left in the graphic below is a good visual reference of what your files should look like when you send your songs in for mastering. The file to the right is what an already mastered file will typically look like.




What is "Standard Mastering"?

Standard mastering is best used for CD production. Standard mastering is returned at CD ready 16-bit 44.1kHz stereo interleaved .wav files. Standard mastering can also be used for the internet or iTunes. For higher quality iTunes masters it is highly recommended to use the "Mastered for iTunes" option.


What is "Mastered for iTunes"?




Since we are an Apple "Mastered for iTunes" certified studio, we can master your songs for the "Mastered for iTunes" option. What this means is that you MUST provide us with a 24bit/44.1kHz OR HIGHER .wav file for mastering and we will return it at the approved MFiT specs to allow iTunes to create their AAC conversions. Apple's MFiT is a higher quality sound file than the standard iTunes files commonly sold throughout iTunes itself.

Once you submit your .wav files to iTunes for distribution you will need to let them know your songs were mastered by our studio for guaranteed approval of the "Mastered for iTunes" option. 


What is "Stem Mastering"?

Stem mastering is when you submit multiple stereo tracks that have separate instruments per stereo track. Here's an example; lets say you are sending in 5 stereo tracks per song. One containing all guitars, one with lead vocals, one with all drums, and one with background vocals, and one with bass. We can then take each stereo stem, adjust levels, and correct any imperfections. Since we have access to separated groups of instruments there are more options for the engineer to make fine adjustments and correct any problems.

Our stem mastering service is for mastering of 5 stems or less. Any additional stems are $10 per stem. Let us know if we are mastering stems for CD production, iTunes/internet or vinyl.


What is "Vinyl Mastering"?

When mastering for vinyl we prepare your audio tracks for the best possible cutting of your master lacquers. Mastering for vinyl uses a slightly different process than other types of mastering. This insures the most headroom/noise floor possible for your masters. We arrange track order, sides and send back vinyl ready master files for vinyl production. You shouldn't use standard mastering for your vinyl masters.


How long is the turnaround time?

Our turnaround time is 5 days or less. "Booking" a day for mastering is not necessary, unless you need your masters back by a certain day. In a rush? Give us a shout! We may be able to offer you a faster turnaround time for a small, one time fee.


How many recalls are allowed?

We include 2 recalls per track free of charge with the mastering and/or mixing service. After the 2 recalls per track are used, please add $10 per recall, per track for mastering and $25 per recall, per track for mixing.


What formats will we accept for mastering?

The standard files sent to us for mastering are usually stereo interleaved .wav files at a bit depth of 24-bit and a sample rate of 44.1kHz or 48kHz.

We also accept stereo multiple mono .wav files, .mp3, .aac and .aiff files. Stereo interleaved .wav files and .aiff are highly encouraged, but if all you have are .mp3 or .aac to master from, we can do that as well.

We also can accept files on physical formats like DVD, CD-R and DAT tapes. If you prefer this method over sending files over the internet you can send them to the address on our contacts page.

To insure the fastest service we recommend Dropbox.com or Wetransfer.com over mailing us your songs via physical copies.


What formats can we return?

We can return wav, aiff, mp3, aac, flac and DDP files. Let us know your preference!


What are DDP files and do I need them?

DDP (Disc Description Protocol) files are used as CD production masters. It's the preferred method of delivery of duplication plants and encouraged over sending burned CD-R's, as the chance of an error during duplication is basically non-existent. The DDP file sets contain all of the information for CD duplication like CD text, ISRC and UPC codes, song titles, album title and artist name.

A DDP file for CD duplication is highly recommended.


What are ISRC codes and do I need them?

ISRC codes are not a necessity but highly encouraged as it's the key to song royalty collection and acts as a digital footprint for each of your song files. ISRC codes are 12 digit numbers that are embedded into your files to identify yourself as the owners of each song file. Click the link below to learn more or to sign up for ISRC codes for your masters.



What if my song is over 6 minutes?

Our mastering rates are for 6 minutes or less per song. If your song is over 6 minutes, please add $5 per extra minute.