Project Variables

If you fill out the form, you will see your current account balance below. Click on an icon for more information about each option.

Please do not submit multiple individual song projects as a single project. If you need more than one single-song master at a time, please submit them as separate projects. Have a look at our page Single-Song-Mastering . Thank you.

Our goal is to make this process as simple and uncomplicated as possible for you.

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Instrumental Master

Select this check box if you also want to use instrumental and/or TV mixes of your songs for mastering. It is important to create these additional mixes at the same time as the main mixes, otherwise the total cost will be higher due to the additional effort.

Studio-Tan’s mastering service cannot create instrumental masters from your regular vocal mixes. Instrumental mixes must be created during the mixing phase.
Please make sure that there are no changes to the mix other than removing the vocals during instrumental mixing. This ensures the greatest continuity between the masters of your complete mixes and the masters of your instrumental versions.
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Providing the ISRC codes

Select this option if you want ISRC codes to be generated and assigned to each of your songs. An ISRC code is a digital fingerprint for each of your songs to track online usage, listening to the radio, and other uses for royalty purposes. ISRC codes do not directly refer to album or project information displayed on CD players or in iTunes software on a computer.

ISRC codes are not required for the CD release. Most online distributors like iTunes Store or Spotify require this code for each song. If you use Studio – Tan Mastering to pre-assign your ISRC codes, make sure your CD master and product CDs contain valid ISRC codes. You can then use these when setting up your online distribution.

You can also provide your own ISRC codes at no additional cost. Use the ISRC field in the form below. ISRC codes must be specified at the latest when the final master CD for production is created if they are to be included on the produced CDs. There is no way to add ISRC codes to a physical CD once production has started. You cannot add the ISRC codes to the DDP or CD-R production master until the next time the CD is pressed.

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DDPi Disc-Image

In the Basic Mastering tariff you automatically receive your master in DDP format with a licensed copy of a HOFA DDP Player. With the DDP Player you can listen to your master on a computer (Mac or PC), burn CDs and export 16-bit/44.1k WAV files to your computer. This is often the most effective and simple way to evaluate the distance between songs, tracks / albums / songs and the sound quality itself.

The DDPi covers almost all requirements in the field of CD pressing and online distribution. If you want high resolution master files (for Bandcamp and SoundCloud), Mastered For iTunes compatible or mp3 (or AAC) files directly from the mastering session, please select the desired options in this form.

WAV 16-bit/44.1k files are currently the standard format for sending your masters to most digital distributors (Tunecore, Feiyr, CD Baby) and can be exported directly from the included DDP player.

24-bit / Version High Definition

These files are ideal for transfer to websites like Bandcamp and SoundCloud. Also ideal for storing in your archives and for your future needs. Bandcamp and SoundCloud currently accept master files with higher resolutions than most online distributors. Other distributors are likely to accept higher resolution masters in the future.

Also select this option if you need an official version for Mastered For iTunes. You will then receive adjusted master data. A Mastered For iTunes output must currently be configured as a separate start for most digital distributors. Please note that this is usually associated with additional costs. The reason for this is that for a Mastered For iTunes version, a certain set of master files must be created and sent to your digital distributor.

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24-bit / Version High Definition Vinyl Pre-Master

These are 24-bit WAV files created at the original sampling rate of your project. It can easily be doubled if the original non-mastered files are 44.1k or 48k. These are prepared as one file per page. This ensures gaps and transitions between songs.

The sound of the tracks is optimized so that they can be transferred to a record as well as possible. The lacquer cutter or pressing device you choose can also have a big influence on the sound quality of your disc. Send me an email if you want to know how you can make sure your record sounds as good as possible.

If you know who you are relying on for burning and/or disc production, please let us know in the notes below.

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Cassette Pre-Master

These are usually 16-bit/44.1k WAV files. This is one WAV file for each side of the cassette. However, if you are using a manufacturer that can create a cassette from 24-bit files at a high sampling rate, please include this information in the additional notes. Premasters for cassettes are usually provided by us in the form of one file per page. This helps, as with a vinyl record, to ensure gaps and transitions between songs.

If you know who is going to manufacture your cassettes, please let us know in the “Further information” section.

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mp3 or m4a (AAC) Reference files labeled with artwork and metadata

If you select this option, you will receive mp3 or m4a (AAC) files from your digital master. Mp3 or m4a files are smaller because they have a lower resolution than an audio CD, for example. They’re similar to the type of file you’d get if you bought a song from the iTunes Store.

The mp3/m4a files are encoded in the mastering software by a 32-bit floating point source. This gives better results than encoding them yourself from 16-bit or 24-bit WAV files. So mp3/m4a files sound as good as possible despite their technical limitations.

These files also contain all the metadata and graphics you normally see when you buy a song from the iTunes Store. You can use these files to share your album or project with others for personal or promotional purposes. You can easily insert an mp3/m4a file into an email attachment. A WAV file of a song is too large for this and therefore not ideal for emailing.

Basic Mastering contains 16-bit/44.1k WAV files, which are the most common files in most online distributions. Some distribution methods accept files with a higher resolution of 24 bits and the initial sampling rate.

The conversion from mp3/m4a to WAV is not recommended for several reasons. In reality it is always a low resolution file. Once a file is reduced to mp3/m4a quality, the audio quality is lost forever, even if it is converted back to WAV.

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48k WAV Masters optimized and formatted for video use

Select this option if you want master files with a sampling rate of 48k. This corresponds to the sampling rate used by almost all video editors. If you plan to create video content for one of your songs, you will need a 48k WAV master file. This eliminates the need to convert or edit your audio file. Nothing stands in the way of importing into video programs.

If you use the video editing software to convert the sample rate of your audio master to 48k, this may cause unnecessary damage to the audio material. This is especially the case if the person doing the work has no special audio skills.

If you only need 48k-Master for a few songs and not for the whole project, please enter it in the field below. The final price will be adjusted accordingly.


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Physical Master – CD

You probably don’t need a physical CD-R. Only a few CD and cassette manufacturers, recorders (for vinyl projects) and pressing plants still need a physical CD for production. It ultimately depends on who you choose and what conditions you have to meet.

Most masters can be transferred over the Internet to the manufacturer without the need for a physical CD. Check with your sales department and/or information on your website. Studio-Tan’s mastering service does not charge extra for sending files over the Internet.

The general rule for CD production is that a DDP file is used for replication. It can be transferred over the Internet. A physical CD-R master is sometimes required for smaller quantities of duplication jobs. Please check with your manufacturer.

It is best to avoid using a CD-R as the master disc. They are not as reliable as a DATA file such as DDP files or WAV files with 24 bit/high resolution.

If using a CD-R as a master disc is the only option, it will be tested with us in Studio-Tan for c1/c2 errors. So you can be sure that it is suitable as a master disc for CD production. We do not recommend burning your own CD-R master.

CD-R is not a good medium to archive your project in the long term. Please send us an email to discuss the best long-term archiving options for your project that you can rely on for years.

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USB Archive Option

Select this option if you want a USB stick containing all your mastered files and other files related to the mastering session.

At the end of the mastering process, you can download all your mastered files in various formats from the Internet. If you want to get them all on one convenient USB stick, you can choose this option. Having an archive is always good.

The price includes a USB stick and shipping within Europe. Don’t forget to include your postal address in the additional instructions.

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Payment Method

A bank transfer is desired in order to avoid administrative fees. It is more difficult for small businesses to pay the administration fees associated with PayPal (currently 3.4% plus €0.35).

Payment via PayPal is easy. Before the start of the project you will receive an invoice with a direct link to the payment process.

Target Completion Date

Please let us know if you need this project 100% ready for production and distribution. We will allow sufficient time to review the original master and make any changes.

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Further Information

Additional e-mail address (for other persons who should also receive the master files for approval).):

Project information

Songtitel / Songorder and ISRC - codes (if available):

IMPORTANT : Please use correct titles and punctuation marks as these are embedded as CD text and metadata. Please do not use CAPITAL LETTERS ONLY for titles and names unless you want them to appear the same way.

How will you send the file(s) to be mastered?
Preferred loudness:


Maintain or conserve original dynamic range

Please select this option if you prefer a master to a natural sound. A dynamic and natural master is made at the expense of the overall volume, but it is often more pleasant to hear in context. A more dynamic master can actually have much more effect than an extremely loud master if the mixing and mastering is done with good taste. By preserving the dynamic range of your master, you leave room for the loudest parts to get louder and the quietest parts to stay quieter.

This is a very subjective decision, which also depends on the quality of your performances, recordings and mixes. Remember that louder isn’t always better and that you can’t have a master with extremely high average volume and an extremely dynamic master at the same time.

Find the sweet spot.

Please choose this option if you trust Studio-Tan’s mastering service to find the ideal balance for your masters. This is based on the style of the music and the style and qualities of your performances, recordings and mixes. The desired distribution formats (vinyl, CD, cassette, digital/online) will also be considered.

Make it loud!

Select this option if the main objective of your mastering session is to obtain a loud master. As a general rule, the louder the master, the more compromises must be made in terms of dynamics and sound characteristics.

In the digital world, every hardware reaches a certain point where an increase in volume is associated with compression and/or digital limitation. This leads to sound artifacts in your music that work well with some music styles, but are not pleasant or ideal for all music styles. Extremely loud masters sound loud and aggressive at a certain point.

Preferred spacing between songs:

Song Spacing Preference

Select one of these three options to get a rough idea of the desired time between songs. This can be easily adjusted throughout the mastering process, but it is useful to have an idea at the beginning of the project.

If you need certain transitions or gaps between songs, please add an mp3 file from the album or the whole project. It should be a continuous file with the intervals and transitions of the song as they should appear on the final master. The mp3 serves as a reference or guide for the order of the currently mastered version. If necessary, it can be refined before the master is finished.

Tight Spacing

Select this option if you want relatively fast transitions between songs. Please refer to the “More Information” section below for special instructions. You can also send a reference MP3 of the entire project as a single file to illustrate all transitions between songs.

Standard Spacing

Select this option if you want approximately 2 seconds between songs. Please also refer to the notes in the “Further information” section. You can also send a reference MP3 of the entire project as a single file to illustrate all the transitions of certain songs.

Extended Spacing

Select this option if you want above-average pauses between songs (approx. 4 seconds).

No Additional Space Needed

Select this option if you have set the distance between songs and transitions on your non-mastered mixes as desired. Nothing needs to be changed, everything needs to stay the way it is. If you choose this option, make sure that you have carefully listened to, analyzed and prepared the files to be used for mastering. Please also make sure that there is no unwanted noise or dead space at the beginning or end of the files used for mastering. Please also include specific instructions in the “More Information” section below. You can also send a reference MP3 of the entire project as a single file to view all specific song transitions.

Additional information:

To send me your files, please create a single zip file containing all your audio files and a jpg of the cover (if available). Upload it via WeTransfer or share a dropbox folder with

If you specify a direct link to your audio file, it makes sense if all files are contained in a single zip file. So it is not necessary to download each song or file separately. Use a simple file-sharing service like Dropbox or WeTransfer, where you don't have to create an account to get files.

If someone else provides the audio files, please forward this information. If you have any further questions, please see contact me.

Please name your zip file or folder with the artist name and version number as 'Artist_01 Name' or with a date code as 'Artist_042016 Name'. This is useful when new files are needed in the middle of a project.

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