Private Mastering Course

The Private Mastering Course is a 12 week course designed to guide you through each step in the mastering process. Learn professional level mastering skills with the help and guidance of a professional mastering engineer.
This course was originally created with 10 private lessons included in the program. However, the information provided stands on its own as with every other mastering course on the site. Any references to 'master submissions' should be ignored in this "Replay Edition".


Class 1: The Mastering Mindset

This class introduces the mindset of the professional mastering engineer and how they approach the process of mastering. The listening techniques covered in this lesson will be a foundational part of the the rest of the course.

  1. Course Overview and Instructions
  2. Brief History of Mastering
  3. Jobs of the Modern Mastering Engineer
  4. Mastering Studio Setup
  5. Listening Techniques for Mastering
  6. Evaluating Mixes and Masters

Class 2: The Tools of Mastering

This class introduces some very familiar tools but from the perspective of the mastering engineer. It also introduces some less familiar tools that are specific to mastering and loudness.

  1. Mastering Equalizers
  2. Mastering Compressors
  3. Harmonic Enhancement Tools
  4. Spatial Processors
  5. Mastering Limiters
  6. Mastering Meters and Analyzers

Class 3: Equalization Techniques for Mastering

Mastering EQs are designed with precision, transparency and musicality in mind, and the mastering engineer’s approach to equalization is exactly the same. The techniques used differ greatly from those of the mixing engineer and that is exactly what this class will focus on.

  1. Role of Equalization in Mastering
  2. Selecting the Best Mastering EQ
  3. Filtering Techniques
  4. ‘Feathering’ Equalization Techniques
  5. Stair-Stepping Equalization Techniques
  6. Baxandall and Tilt EQ

Class 4: Compression Techniques for Mastering

Compression in mastering is all about focus, imaging quality and depth perception. Understanding the different types of compression and how they affect these qualities is as important as understanding the techniques used to create them.

  1. Role of Compressors in Mastering
  2. Selecting the Best Mastering Compressor
  3. Averaging Compression Techniques
  4. Front-Back Depth Compression Techniques
  5. Imaging Compression Techniques
  6. Using Tape for Compression

Class 5: Harmonic Enhancements for Mastering

The class will focus on the powerful world of harmonic enhancements to bring warmth and listenability to your masters. The information here will provide a foundation for all of your vintage EQ and compressor processing decisions.

  1. Defining Harmonic Enhancement
  2. Harmonic Enhancement Tools
  3. Component Based Harmonic Enhancements
  4. Tape Based Harmonic Enhancement
  5. Exciters in Mastering

Class 6: Imaging and Depth Processors

The ultimate goal of a great mastering is to get the music to “escape the speakers”. 3D sound field specific processing is an important  part of that process. This class will teach you the techniques that help create depth and width in your mastering work.

  1. Mastering and the 3D Sound Field
  2. Mid-Side Level and Balance Processing
  3. Imager Processing
  4. Low Level Enhancement for Depth
  5. Mastering with Early Reflections and Reverb

Class 7: Multi-Band Processing for Mastering

Multiband processing is primarily a product of the digital realm. It can bring life to stubborn mixes, control sibilance and harshness, dynamically balance a master, and provide precision transient control. They can also tear a master apart. This class will teach you techniques and specific guidelines you can use to take advantage of these very sophisticated processors.

  1. Defining Multi-Band Processors
  2. Multi-Band Compression & Expansion
  3. Dynamic Equalization
  4. De-Essing Masters
  5. Multi-Band Limiting

Class 8: Mid-Side Processing Techniques for Mastering

Mid-Side processing goes all the way back to cutting lathe and mastering for vinyl records. The most powerful elements of a mix, including vocals, bass, kick and snare are often panned center in the mix with complimentary elements panned to the sides. This provides the ability to process primary and secondary elements of a mix independently. This will guide you through the advantages and pitfalls of this approach to processing masters.

  1. Mid-Side Processing Defined
  2. Mid-Side Balancing
  3. Mid-Side Equalization
  4. Mid-Side Compression
  5. Mid-Side Harmonic Processing

Class 9: Loudness Processing and Gain Maximization

Regardless of your feelings about compression and limiting, the competitive marketplace dictates that artists will want you to make their masters as loud as possible. Understanding how to create loud masters that feel present and dynamic without the need for excessive processing is the focus of this class.

  1. Loudness Standards and Metering
  2. Using Compression for Loudness
  3. Parallel Processing for Loudness
  4. Single Band Gain Maximization
  5. Muti-Band Gain Maximization

Class 10: Mastering Singles

Now that you have covered the fundamentals of processing masters, it is time to put your processing skills to work. Each mastering demonstrated in this class will detail specific problems and the solutions used to solve them. All off the techniques used will draw from the information provided in the first 9 classes.

  1. Gain Structure and Head/Tail Edits
  2. Equalization
  3. Compression
  4. Harmonic Enhancements
  5. Depth and Spatial Processing
  6. Maximizing Gain

Class 11: EPs/Albums Part 1: Structuring the Album

Mastering EPs and Albums limits some of the freedoms you have with mastering singles. Because the songs will be sold as a collection, they must sound like they belong together with each song leading to the next fluidly and with equal perceived loudness. This class features techniques that will teach you how to establish a signature sound and deal with the inevitable imbalances that will occur from song to song.

  1. Session Setup and File Import
  2. EP/Album Layout
  3. Establishing a Common Processing Chain
  4. Unique Processing for Problem Mixes
  5. Tonal Balancing the Album

Class 12: EPs/Albums Part 2: Finalizing the Master

This class continues the work of assembling an album or EP and covers the differences in creating digital release masters and physical CD masters.

  1. Final Adjustments
  2. Song Spacing
  3. Loudness Balancing
  4. Exporting the Reference Master
  5. Adjustments and Finalizing Digital Masters

Bonus Class: Exporting Final Masters and DDP Files

This class will discuss the process of exporting the final masters and creating a DDP file.

  1. Mastering Session Exports
  2. Creating the DDP Master
  3. PMC Wrap Up


Private Mastering Course is now available as a Replay Edition
Only $49 for Lifetime Access

Interested in Private Instruction?

Use this contact for for questions, cost and availability


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