It’s getting more common for mixers to do the mastering for clients, especially when you’re just starting out.
I used to do this too in the first half of my career.
These days though, I’m a big believer in getting someone else to master your work. In fact I haven’t mastered anything in years. Here are my reasons why.
- Your main skill set is mixing, not mastering.
- It will make your mixes sound even better
- You don’t have the room or the gear designed for mastering.
- You’re not really mastering anyways, just trying to make it louder (usually by compromising the mix)
- Your clients won’t object or think less of you
To find your mastering engineer, simply pick 5 or 10 of your favorite records and look at the credits. See who mastered them and if the same name appears more than once. For me, there were two names that kept coming up in the credits of my favorite records, and I tried both of them for my own projects.
Know what I found? They were a lot less expensive than I expected. One of those mastering engineers went on to become my go-to guy – and I’ve been sending him every project I do since.
Once you find the right mastering engineer and experience the results, you won’t want to go back to doing it yourself. And once your clients experience that, they won’t want to go back either.