Mastering Articles

What does it mean when music is remastered?

Remastering music improves the quality of the original copy of a song or album.

The process aims to remove flaws from the music, to provide a cleaner, sharper, and more refined listening experience in line with modern audio standards.

remastering desk buttons

How is remastering achieved?

Remastering is completed by an audio engineer through the use of precise editing and processing units like equalization, stereo imaging, compression, and limiting.

To start the remastering process, a mastering engineer will get copies of the track or album and using a digital audio workstation (DAW), will listen to it to make necessary adjustments;

  1. Frequency flaws are monitored using an equalizer unit throughout the runtime and balanced to ensure no spikes appear across a range of output devices.
  2. Noise reduction techniques are executed to eliminate or subdue sounds such as hisses, hums, clicks, dropouts, bad edits, or whistling.
  3. Compressing and peak limiting are then used for loudness and to enrich the overall impact of the audio.

Each of the stages above is executed with the highest grade of processing unit, to ensure the final output reaches the best sound possible.  


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Why is music remastered?

Remastering can improve the poor recording quality of the original music made; hence, record labels have found remastered releases to be loved by loyal fans who can buy their favorite albums and hear them in a whole new way.

Most works are remastered to keep up with the latest audio formats. This helps bring the sound into the modern experience as opposed to sounding flat, old, or out of date.

Attempting to listen to a 1920s digital tape on an MP3 player; due to technologies employed in music production back in the ‘20s, there will be a number of difficulties ranging from muffled sounds to hissing noise in the audio. This may make it challenging to listen to the lyrics or enjoy the overall sound.

Taking old recordings and ridding them of flaws introduces new listeners to vintage performances by great musicians and artists. This objective is to update the sonic quality of the song or track to have it sound as good as music made in recent times.

Arguments against, discuss how an increase in the sound level can distort the original recording and fatigue the ear. An overuse of equalization produces a harsh sound that waters down the originality of the music being remastered.

Conclusively, moderation is key in remastering. The essence of remastering music is to make better and flawless songs. The purpose would be defeated if an old track comes back sounding like a broken record.

The best place to listen to your remastered records is definitely in your lounge, enjoying the rich tones of some of the best bookshelf speakers.

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