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Mastering trance

Mastering trance | Trance mastering | Mastering Psy Trance

Mastering 1 Track = £30.00 | Stem Mastering 1 Track £56.00 | 4 Track (Stereo) E.P = £112.00 | Album 10-12 tracks £230.00 no tax added.

Allow me to exceed your expectations.

Do I know psy trance and trance music ?

Here are 4 track excerpts of tracks that I produced/mixed myself. I used ISM Bazzism or Kick 2 and various synths for the bass line. 23 years of professional sound engineering experience, 13 of which solely mastering. See my biog and background on mastering engineer page.

Equipment and acoustics

PMC IB1S, 10 inch drivers to 25Hz, large format mastering grade speakers. If high end monitors are listed on a website ensure you see an actual photo of them in situ in the studio, as evidence they really exist.  Here I have 28 x 1.2M x 0.6M bass traps. I am very serious about acoustics, I am frankly stunned seeing studios offering mastering using foam corner bass traps as they are useless. Here I use RW3 and RS45 traps, 28 of them, the deepest 2 meters thick.

If someone is using foam traps they probably do not understand that they have no effect under 400Hz ultimately it is your decision. Acoustics are not negotiable, they are critical, this applies to all music genres and I work comfortably with all. Especially when monitors here PMC IB1S easily reproduce 25Hz. Real acoustic treatment is difficult. Acoustics is hard work, I put the work in so you do not have to. If mastering engineers speak and they did not show their studio on their site or have foam ‘bass traps’ their words are empty. You cannot ignore the laws of physics. That is all I have to say.

Crane Song Solaris Quantum DAC (lowest ever published jitter spec), Manley Massive Passive, 500 WPC Hypex Class D amplification. Vari Mu, Sontec Analogue eq, Summit Audio Compressor, Mytek ADC. Plus a full set of ear selected up to date plug ins.

When it comes to mastering psy trance and trance I know how this music is meant to sound on a huge crystal clear P.A. system. (irrelevant of your bass line root note). Using truly mastering grade room acoustics and speakers it is time to hear the difference I can make for your tracks when they hit the dance floor. Equally important, the quality of sound cannot be resolved by metering.

I appreciate there are a few names that attract the mastering of trance music, it is a tight scene. However your curiosity brought you here and for £30.00 it is worth knowing for sure that your engineer is doing the best possible job on your music. Had a few reservations about other’s work ? Rates costing you a fortune ? Unsure about the quality of their studio equipment ? It is time for you to find out what you have been missing. There is a new guy in town and there is no harm checking !

Whether you are an established label or an independent artist I can take your psy trance and trance tracks to their maximum sonic potential for a great price. Therefore, I assure you of the best sonic results performed with the right spirit (equipment and acoustic honesty being a good start).

PS As a friendly word of caution you should not get the track mastered by the same engineer who mixed it. The entirety of music recording history has determined this, (that mastering and mixing are 2 seperate processes best handled by 2 dedicated skilled individuals) Who are we to argue against that ? Here are my detailed thoughts on specialization :

Choose mastering by a specialist, the dedication to excel.

I do not currently mix music as a service. I dedicate to mastering music.

Click for pricing and payment page

Further details

* Understanding the high degree of technical knowledge that well known psy trance / trance producers have please see bottom of page for more details on acoustic treatment and the large format PMC IB1S (10 inch driver) speakers with 500watt per channel Hypex Class D amplification. A mastering engineer cannot correct what they cannot hear so audiophile high end (full range to 25Hz) monitors are not a second thought they are 100pct essential.

Trance music has a rich history since the early-mid 1990’s an up tempo music form which is both unique and influential. Mastering trance music is best performed in an highly accurate and controlled monitoring environment. Therefore, large scale loudspeakers with defined, deep and accurate bass response in a well treated acoustic environment are the gold standard.

Acoustics and high end monitors are critical

A few foam or rockwool bass traps will not flatten the low end of a room, it is a fantasy that near fields and a couple of corner straddles is sufficient. At Safe&Sound mastering there are no less than 28 x 1.2M x 0.6M bales of Rockwool/Earthwool (RW3/RW45 and 28kg m3 densities). In addition, I have some traps that are 2 Meters deep, that flattens the low end unlike almost useless foam) It is important to know your music will sound right at the festival, party or club, here there is accuracy to 25Hz.

Mastering worthy reference speakers which can reproduce the full frequency range and highlight distortion and harshness early gives music the best chance of translating well. To club systems/ out door P.A.s and all other environments. Small speakers will not cut it for mastering. Most mastering engineers are proud of their high end monitors and show it on their site without hesitation. (check my video)

Experienced engineering

Mastering trance/psy trance also requires a mastering engineer who is sympathetic to the genre of dance music as a whole. And also understands the technicalities and intent of the music. Furthermore, I take the challenge of mastering trance and psy personally. It’s a style I know and enjoy working with, knowing the harmonically rich mixes involved require special attention. Along with the huge importance of your kick and bass.

Whatever your sub genre, be it commercial, vocal trance, euphoric, tech trance, psy trance. (Forest, Dark psy, Full On or Progressive, Hi Tec, Goa, Psy chill, Psy breaks, Psybient) requires someone who has an understanding of the goals of this music.

My approach

My approach to mastering trance music (and mastering psy trance music) will utilize a combination of tools in order to get the last drop of quality out of the music. It will take your music to its maximum potential. In particular high end analogue equalization to promote depth and space in a mix down. And high end compression,  in addition the best digital tools and superb fidelity reproduction system.

Trance can get harsh if the upper mid range is not carefully examined and in balance with the rest of the spectrum. A good trance mastering engineer will perfect the tonal balance. In addition, typically you want competitive volume, this can be discussed and the right choices made for your music so it is the perfect compromise between volume and fidelity.

Big sound system results

Moreover, it is important when mastering for club based systems that the full audio range is heard down to the deepest lows. This is so any adjustments and corrections to the all important bass frequencies can be made. It is easy to miss common problems in the lower frequencies when attempting to self finalize music. Get it right and the results will be excellent sounding “play outs” at festivals and parties. And in addition sound great for your fans. Synthesizer heavy trance music requires an experienced ear to master successfully. If you are considering mastering trance music, drop me a line or by all means call to discuss your project and requirements.

The studio houses the following equipment:

PMC IB1S monitors /  Crane Song Solaris Quantum DAC / Hypex Class D amps / MYTEK ADC
MANLEY Massive Passive (Hardware not UAD)
HCL VaRiS (Vari Mu Valve compressor)
Summit Audio DCL-200 Valve compressor
Custom built T-Filter equalizer (Sontec inspired circuit), stereo ganged.
Dynaudio BM6P and Avantone secondary monitors
The finest ear selected DSP (software) money can buy. DMG Audio, Fabfilter, Nugen, Plug In Alliance, Voxengo, Izotope, Acustica, Oeksound, etc. Only the very best from each developer.

Barry Gardner has been operating Safe&Sound mastering for 13 years without equipment being moved. Housed in a very well treated room, for repeatable results. 28 huge henge style bass traps plus diffusors. Most important, very serious bass trapping. + 10 years working as head of engineering in UK production company before dedicating as a full time mastering engineer.

In conclusion

My philosophy is that mastering is perfomed by the ears, not by the eyes. Metering is important but certainly secondary. Super definition, detail resolving, accurate full range monitoring is not a second thought, it is critical. In mastering we need to have 100pct accuracy and detail, this way I know what not to do as well as what to do with your music. These are the small differences that set end results apart. A track is released once, make it count.

Just send your track via   Standard pricing 1 Track £30.00, for full details on pricing please see “Pricing and payments” on the menu bar.

This musing on kick and bass may be of interest. I understand the intricacies of this as I design my kick and bass from the ground up. And some more blog articles about producing music.

Psy trance kick and bass tutorial

You may even hear some of the inspirations in these tracks and their write ups, completed tracks that you will enjoy are presented in full.

* The mastering studio is treated with no less than 28 bales (1.2m x 0.6m) of Rockwool RW3/RW45, Knauf RS45 and Knauf 28kg/m3 fibre glass/mineral wool. Room is flat to 25Hz meaning I know precisely what is happening to the low end in this room using PMC IB1S. When your music hits a Funktion 1 system you want to know it is going to sound right.

The acoustic treatment at Safe&Sound is copious and serious. I understand the sheer quantity of treatment required to have a flat bass response in a room. There is significantly more treatment in room today than in the old site photos, you won’t find better results. Some traps are 2 meters deep ! I know the importance of hypnotic, punchy and powerful kick and bass (KbBB) – mid range clarity without harshness and a smooth top end for trance genres. Full range true mastering grade monitoring and room is critical.