Prepare for the Master (CD Mastering)Written by Richard Dolmat
Many artists are still confused as to what goes on during a mastering session. This article will try to shed some light on last step before fame and riches (well, at least last step before duplication), and help you with preparing your music before sending to a mastering studio.
Mastering is last stage of production, right before master CD is sent for duplication. It is extremely important for your product and can dramatically improve quality and consistency of your recordings. Since many musicians have home studios, it is more important than ever to get your final CD mastered properly. It will bring your home-recordings closer to a "radio ready" professional level.
Some of work done at mastering stage include:
-> Equalization and harmonic balancing for consistent sound throughout your entire album. -> Adjusting micro/macro-dynamics (volume changes) of your songs for consistency and loudness. -> Checking inter-channel phase and polarity for mono compatibility. -> Final CD layout with proper song spaces, segues, fades and crossfades snapped to CD frame boundaries. -> Sample and bit rate conversion with dither to Red Book CD Standard.
It's amazing how a good mastering job can bring out width, depth and dimension of a song. You'll hear sounds that used to be buried in mix, vocals will shine through, reverb and effects will be heard, and whole CD will be more enjoyable over a varying range of playback systems. At Digital Sound Magic Studios, we have a one-free song policy. Send us a song (usually through www.yousendit.com) and we master it for free. No catch, no obligation.
But don't assume all work lies on our shoulders! You have to do some legwork too by giving us best source audio and as much information as possible. This will make final mastering process run more smoothly and ensure that you get absolute best master.
Be careful or your poker nuts will get crushed! Written by Ian McIntosh
The origins of phrase poker nuts are uncertain although it is thought to have come from old slang meaning 'delightful thing, practice or experience'. It is a 'delightful thing' of course, because in Texas Holdem poker nuts is best possible hand that you can have at any point in game.
If you have nuts, you cannot be beaten...at that point in hand. This is crucial factor that a lot of inexperienced players fail to take account of, nuts can move from one player to another and your hand which was nuts earlier on can end up being crushed!
The following example should demonstrate fickle nature of cards in Texas Holdem poker and how your nuts can quickly turn to pulp!
You are playing a hand of Texas Holdem poker and there are three players still in game at flop.
You get dealt 7 of clubs, 8 of diamonds; Amy has 5 of spades, 5 of clubs and John's hand is King, 9 of hearts.
The flop is dealt and cards are 9 of hearts, 6 of hearts and 5 of diamonds. This is a great flop for you - you’ve got poker nuts! At this point you have a straight - 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 - which cannot be beaten by any other combination of cards.
Now you decide to 'slow play' your hand and try to draw a bet from somebody with a high pair who will like this flop, so you simply check. Amy likes look of her hand now as she has flopped three 5s so she makes a bet which is called by John as he now has a pair of 9s with a King kicker. You like way it's going so you call bet.