Audio Mastering – Review

Audio Mastering
Developed by: iMusicAlbum Igor Vasiliev

Available in iTunes App Store HERE

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UPDATED: 6-24-2013

Get on the bus! Audio Mastering now supports Audiobus effect & output slots. Very good news don’t you think? They also added a solo mode for EQ bands, record on signal start, fixed some minor bugs and so on.
The Audiobus effect & output support is probably what most folks will get excited for. Now after you do your mixing and have a song all arranged you can record it directly to this to then master. If you’re using Cubasis, NanoStudio, BeatMaker2, FL Studio, etc, then you need this app to make your mix really shine.

Original Review:

If you make music using your iPad, prefer to use one of the iDAWs other than Auria, then you probably would like to have a solid app to master your work?

There’s plenty of snobby purists around who will insist that mastering on an iPad is just not possible. They are right!
It is not possible for them to do it. With their eyes firmly shut and noses stuck so high in the sky, theres no way they could even see the screen. Sarcasm aside, the truth is; oh yes we can!
Admittedly mastering had in the past been a bit of a weakness in iOS music. Most of the iDAWs still have pretty lack luster or cheap tools with too many limitations to be taken seriously in the mastering department. Really only Auria has appropriate mastering tools, and the best plug ins to craft amazing sound. Those however can be very costly, and many people prefer other fine iDAWs for their work. Unfortunately those other iDAWs don’t have much to offer on this topic.
Now developers are taking this stuff seriously and some nice third party apps devoted to high quality mastering are becoming increasingly available, with more too come.

Welcome Audio Mastering!

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If you have good monitors, or studio headphones, all you need is the software to polish up your music. Audio Mastering is a very solid software choice. Based on the same algorithms found in professional, high quality plug ins for computer DAWs, this all in one audio workshop is ready to go.

Features at a glance:
24 bit audio processing, linear phase 10 band equalizer, 3 band stereo imaging, 3 harmonic saturator types, variable speed loudness (limiter) maximizer.
Sample rate converter from 96, 88, 48.4 to 44.1 KHZ
Dithering with noise shaping. 3 fade shapes in and out. Plus many more. Visit Creator Igor Vasiliev blog HERE for more details and app support.

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Currently Audio Mastering supports Audio Copy/Paste, and “Open In” making it easy to exchange files with numerous apps including AudioShare.
There is no DropBox support yet, which I’d really like to see added. No Audiobus support yet, but it is planned for upcoming versions.
No waveform editing, and shouldn’t be expected considering this is not that kind of app.
Although it wouldn’t hurt to have a basic trim, slice, and crop functions.
Worrying about those things would be missing the point of AudioMastering anyway.

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I’ve been happy with the results after using Audio Mastering. No complaints about the audio quality at all. It sounds fantastic! Excellent separation.

I really like how all the controls are on one page making it a breeze to use. Checking work on the fly is hassle free for comparing the mastered version against the original. Making all the fine tuning, & frequency adjustments in real time with instant results, all functions flawlessly. Use the sliders or for finer control, all parameters have +\- buttons to incrementally tweak the sound. If something goes terribly wrong or you just want to go a different direction tap “reset”. Do over!

When you’re all done and have the sound you are looking for just hit “process” and choose the file types to create new copies of your work. After a brief wait, or longer for large files you’re done. It is just painless.

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Audio Mastering has several presets based on music genres to get you started and build off of. You can of course make your own presets to call up quickly to use again. Name and rename them as you like.
Its all about the the sound, and you don’t always need fancy controls or huge amounts of features.
If you don’t feel the need for more than 10 EQ bands or zero latency, automation, or independent channel EQing, this will suit you quite well. All in all Audio Mastering is a bargain and with a high quality suite of tools makes this a powerful and serious option. If you want something that can take a good sound and make it great, then this is a must have app. The difference Audio Mastering makes compared to the limited iDAW mastering options is a no brainer and essential for having the best sound possible. This is a grand companion app to fill out your mobile music production studio.

* I used this app to master a new song I had made in Cubasis. This really added more depth that Cubasis simply couldn’t do. Check out Orbiting The Son for the mastered version. While on that same SoundCloud page scroll down to the un-mastered version called In My Sons Orbit (WIP) for comparison.

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14 comments

  1. When I checked the demos on the website: They all had noticable distortion after Audio Mastering processing. I am curious about the app. I don’t want to offer unjust criticism. But, I am wondering whether it was the conversion process for uploading. Or less than perfect mastering? I would ask if anyone else has noticed these discrepancies? I generally use Fabfilte Pro C & Q. Which if handled carefully can produce excellent results. Although mistakes are easily made.

    1. It could be a number of things. They might have had the gain, maximizer, or harmonic saturator up to high, or who knows? I haven’t had any distortion problems and clean result every time.

      1. I just thought the developer should perhaps make sure any demos do his app justice. These were the slightly distorted tracks: http://audio-mastering-studio.blogspot.de/2013/05/before-and-after-demo.html
        By the way, do you have any opinions on this app in comparison with Fabfilter plug ins in Auria? I’m wondering if Audio Mastering can improve the quality of the mixes I master in Auria? (I have yet to splash out on the Fabfilter limiter that I hear is so great!)

      2. Yes. I did a review of those plug ins as well: Auria FX & Plug Ins Part 3 – Mastering.
        I don’t want to imply anything negative about “Audio Mastering”App, as it is a great quality alternative to the expensive Auria Plug Ins that not everyone has or wants to use.
        But.
        If like me, you are using Auria, it is my opinion there is no alternative of greater capability and quality than its many outstanding plug ins and FX, currently on iOS.
        For those using other iDAWs like Cubasis, NanoStudio, BeatMaker2 and so on, this “Audio Mastering” app is an essential companion since those iDAWs have no serious mastering options.

      3. Yes. You reviews helped decide me to buy the Fabfilter mastering plug ins. I have found that I can crash Auria (64 bit / iPad4) with 2 or more instances of Pro C / Pro Q though! Looking forward to your review, part 4. Thanks.

  2. This looks great, have been waiting for a mastering app on IOS. As these get better, will no longer have to transfer to a laptop or pc for mastering!

  3. I have Pro-C and Pro-Q. I’m wondering if I want to complete the trio and pick up Pro-L or use Audio Mastering for limiting duties. From the limiting aspect, is Pro-L better or the equiv? Can I get your take on that?

    1. Pro-L is more complex with greater capability and much more detailed control, plus it can be automated. I wouldn’t recommend Pro-L for use on anything less than iPad4 to fully appreciate its highest quality settings. It gets very demanding. However, in my personal opinion (and I’m no audio engineer) I’d rather use AudioMastering App for limiting. Limiting is one of those things that get endlessly debated. I prefer the simple approach of just keeping limiters to a tight attack and release, which is easily and well done with this app.

      1. Excellent – thanks for sharing your take. I am on an iPad 3 and am planning to wait for the 5 to be released before upgrading (A7 CPU). FabFilter has a yearly bundle sale so I am definitely picking that up for my Mac, where Pro-L will be less of an issue. Audio Mastering it is then – it’ll be nice to throw it in the AudioBus effects slot too.

  4. This looks like an amazing app,i hope its decreases the overhead of audio mastering. Waiting for it to launch soon. Thanks for updating us about this app.

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