Here are a few things you should look over to make sure that they're good to go.
Disclaimer: I understand that this may be absolute common sense to the large majority of people who will read it. However I still receive TONS of tracks that break one of the following guidelines. Punchline: it's much easier to check and tackle these issues now rather than later.
1. Tracks for mastering must be submitted as WAV of AIFF format, at the highest possible bith depth (up to 32) and sample rate at which they were recorded. They can't have ever been mp3, wma, aac etc. Simply converting one of these compressed file types back to wav will not suffice.
2. Files should not be clipping and have at least a few db of headroom for me to work with. One good way to test this is to re-import your mix after bouncing it and take a look at the waveform in your DAW. It will be very clear if it's too hot and clipped.
3. Avoid any kind of limiting or loudness maximizing on the master track. Also, if you're unsure of any eq or compression that you may be using on your master bus send me a track with and without (but make sure to label clearly). I'll be able to choose between the two, and often times I can use the processed version as a reference to improve upon.
4. Files should be clearly labeled and ZIPPED INTO ONE SINGLE FILE named for the project. Zipping the files serves a dual purpose. Not only does it make everything nice and neat, it also provides protection against data corruption during the transfer process.
File labeling and organization is key to the mastering process, let's start things off right by having them label and organized properly before you send them in. *there is an additional setup fee applied if the files are not sent in this format, ouch!
- All mixes should be placed in a single folder named for the ARTIST and PROJECT
- Organized mixes into subfolders (MAIN/INST/RADIO/Etc) when applicable.
- All files should be numbered according to their track order, with their actual track title.