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PREPARING STEMS FOR MIXING
& STEM MASTERING
  • Provide 24bit stems in wav or aif format.  Keep the same sample rate as you are using in your DAW (44.1kHz is fine)

  • Provide as many stems as you can up to a maximum of around 50. The more instrument/drum/percussion/vocal stems I have, the more control I have. I want to achieve the absolute best sound possible.  A typical record shouldn’t need more than around 50 stems including vocals so consider whether certain sounds could be grouped if they are very similar sounding (fx sounds for example).

  • If the vocal/instrument/drum/percussion track is mono, you can provide a mono stem.

  • Bounce/export all stems starting at the same bar position on your arrangement.

  • Include all fx, automation & sidechain compression in your stems. If I need anything dry or unprocessed I’ll ask for it.

  • Bounce/export the stems at the same volume as they are in your track. This will ensure that I know the general balance that you are looking for.  I.e. don’t put all of your tracks at unity gain before bouncing and don’t normalize the stems afterwards.

  • Remove any type of compression or effects from your master output channel before you bounce/export the stems. Keep the master fader at the same setting for all stems.

  • Name each stem file as the name of the instrument – rather than including artist name/track name etc.  Please put your newly created stems in a new project to check that they are all as they should be (solo each stem as well as check them all playing together).

  • Group your stems and put them into folders, i.e separate folders for drums, bass, leads, pads, guitars, fx, vocals etc.  ZIP up your folders and upload the ZIP/RAR file to https://www.dropbox.com/request/jvaxTxwDKaoq4UWz34f9 – let me know when you’ve uploaded it!

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