Frequently Asked Questions
The Airlab Online Mastering Studioemail or call: +44(0)7 816 536 563

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What is Mastering?

Mastering, a form of audio post-production, is the process of preparing and transferring recorded audio from a source containing the final mix to a data storage device (the master); the source from which all copies will be produced (via methods such as pressing, duplication or replication). Mastering requires critical listening environment. Results will depend upon the accuracy of speaker monitors and the listening environment. Mastering engineers may also need to apply corrective equalizer and dynamic enhancement in order to optimise sound translation on all playback systems.

Audio Mastering. n.d. In Wikipedia. Retrieved December 16, 2013, from

What is Stem Mixing?

Stem-mixing is a method of mixing audio material based on creating groups of audio tracks and processing them separately prior to combining them into a final master mix. Stems are also sometimes referred to as submixes, subgroups, or busses.

Some people consider stems the same as separation mastering although others consider stems to be sub-mixes to be used with separation mastering. There is some lack of clarity with regards to what is a stem versus what is a separation. Semantically it seems to depend on how many separate channels of input are available for mixing and/or at which stage they are at towards reducing them down a final stereo mix, with different people drawing the separation line at different places.

This technique is widely used in recording studios to control, process and manipulate entire groups of instruments such as drums, strings, or backup vocals, in order to streamline and simplify the mixing process. Additionally, as each stem-bus usually has its own inserts, sends and returns, the stem-mix (sub-mix) can be processed independently through its own signal processing chain to achieve a different effect for each group of instruments.

This technique is also practiced with DAW in a similar way where groups of audio tracks may be processed and manipulated digitally through a separate chain of plugins.

Stem mixing and mastering. n.d. In Wikipedia. Retrieved December 16, 2013, from

What is Stem Mastering?

Stem-mastering is a technique derived from stem mixing. Just like in stem-mixing, the individual audio tracks are grouped together to allow for independent control and signal processing of each stem and can be manipulated independently from each other. Even though this method is not commonly practiced by mastering studios it does have its proponents.

Stem mixing and mastering. n.d. In Wikipedia. Retrieved December 16, 2013, from

How To Submit a CD to CDDB Gracenote for iTunes and Winamp recognition?

First you need the CD (we recommend using the final pressing) that you place into your CD ROM drive. Then you need software, such as iTunes or QMP and your computer needs an internet connection.

Then you simply type in all these core details:
Artist name
Album name
Track title
Year of release
Label name (iTunes doesn't supply this field)

Then you hit the submit (OK) button. Your submit takes two or three days to process before it's available in our recognition service. Now you can search our knowledgebase for the most popular freeware submit (upload) software applications, iTunes and QMP.

Submit a CD. n.d. In Gracenote. Retrieved December 16, 2013, from

Contact Us:

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  • Mobile: +44 (0)7816 536 563

  • Opening Hours: Monday to Saturday. 9am to 7pm

    • Dan Davies - Doppelgänger

      I just wanted to message you to say a HUGE THANK YOU for the masters that you did on our latest E.P.
      It sounds awesome!!!!!
      My guitars sound just beautiful.
      Really appreciate all your patience and the work you put into it.
      We as a band could not be more happy with it.
      Im so glad we found you, expect more work your way.

    • Sarjeant Cliff - Mortal

      Thank you so much for the work on the Mortal album.
      We love it more than love itself.
      A great job, thank you.

    • Leon Pearce

      If you could just pass onto Jerome our highest praise for the master.
      it sounds amazing!!
      Thanks for all your help as well.

    • Ashley Kampta - Elson

      Jerome is a permanent contact now.
      We have to congratulate him on a sterling job.
      I don't know how he's done it, I really don't.

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