If ever there were two words whose meanings have been blurred, in the Audio World, it’s MIXING and MASTERING. Most “listeners” don’t truly concern themselves about the process, rather they just enjoy the music coming out of their speakers. For that matter, this process of MIXING and MASTERING happens in all disciplines of Audio (Music Production, Video Game Audio, Post Production, Live Sound Reinforcement, and Broadcast Audio), but it is typically “invisible” to the listener. However, there are a few exceptional “listeners” that find themselves wanting to pursue their passion in music (or sound), and do not realize that they might be misusing the terms that truly represent MIXING and MASTERING.
Music Production Sound Engineering
Although MIXING and MASTERING happens in all disciplines, let’s focus on Music Production to accurately define the terms.
Since most consumers are never part of the entire process of “making a record,” but trust me when I tell you, it’s quite the process! Imagine this: An Artist has created/written s song and wants to record it so that they can distribute the song to their fans (and hopefully gain new fans!). If they are a notable Artist, they’ll contact their Producer, and set the wheels in motion. The Producer will listen to the song and piece together a plan of action, which might include: booking a studio, booking musicians, enlisting the help of an Audio Engineer, and making sure that there’s enough time and talent to make it all happen.