The Input phase is not all about getting the digital data files or the analog tape master to be summed and mastered. It basically is the understanding of the context within which the song is going to be listened to; the phase in which I discuss the goals with the song producer and/or the artist to identify how our mastering services can help in achieving such goals.
We do analog Summing for all kinds of multi-track digital files and all formats of analog session tape. The sum is a ‘sum’, not a ‘re-mix’. We are not supposed to (and we do not) apply creativity in this phase, unless otherwise requested by the client, of course. We do analog sum to give to the mix an ‘analog glue’ that digital sum simply does not have, no matter what the sequencer is.
In the Mastering phase we first process audio in Digital Audio Workstation through hardware accelerated Universal Audio virtual processors (limiters/compressors/tube equalization), then we transfer the mix onto ½” or ¼” two-track analog tape using highly serviced and deeply customized Studer Analog recorders and choosing the proper tape formulation, saturation and compander in order to maximize sonic performances. Next, we bring audio back to digital for rendering. Only Mastering grade A/D & D/A converters, Recorders, Outboard and interconnections are used in this stage.
In the Output phase, mastered data files and/or the analog master tape are produced in the required format and delivered to the client. Both for Digital and Analog masters we produce digital samples for the client’s approval prior to the final delivery