Audio Mastering Fundamentals


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The course is currently open for registration!

We are doing a bigger round of the mastering course during the autumn of 2023. If you ever thought about joining, now is a good time! 🔥

This online course is suitable for you who are a bit further along in your music production. You are making your own mixes and want to create the final masters as well.

The course is based on video lessons that you study at your own pace.

There is also an option to book a private zoom call with us where you can, for example, get feedback on your own master or discuss any mastering related questions you might have. This option is limited to 10 spots for this round of the course.

Special for this round: There will be 10 weekly virtual meet-ups, each with a presentation of a topic from the course + QnA. The first meet-up will be on September 28, 2023 at 18:00 CEST and then every Thursday until November 30. The replays will be available inside the course.

Meet-up topics:

  • How to learn mastering + Setup QnA (September 28)
  • Clarity and presence (October 5)
  • Low-end management (October 12)
  • Warmth (October 19)
  • Width and depth (October 26)
  • Loudness (November 2)
  • Ear training (November 9)
  • ​Mastering your own mixes (November 16)
  • Real mastering project walk-through (November 23)
  • QnA (November 30)

The 10 meet-ups (live and replays) are also available as a separate mini-course if you want to dip your toes into the mastering world but don’t want the deep dive that the full course offers. Or if you have taken the course previous years and want to join this year’s events. (Note that those of you who have joined the course in 2023 will have access to these meet-ups for free.)

The concepts and methods in this course can be applied whether you are using plugins, analog hardware, headphones or speakers. We ourselves have worked in all kinds of setups and have a deep understanding of both digital and analog processing. We have tried it all until we found a way that works for us and we are happy to share our experiences with you.

We have noticed that you will get the most out of the course if you:

  • have a project that you are currently working on
  • study the course material and apply the methods to your own project
  • participate in the weekly meet-ups
  • use the optional zoom call to get feedback on your own master

Course content

The course is designed for self-paced learning, featuring more than 5 hours of video lessons and study questions.

  • Fundamental Methods and Strategies

    • Introduction
    • The mastering workflow

Explanation of a workflow for mastering for online distribution, from importing the mixes to the final quality control.

    • Finding reference tracks

About different types of reference tracks and how you can use them to assess your own master.

    • EQ basics

The must-know basics for using equalization when mastering.

    • Equalization in mastering

This lesson will help you work with intention when setting your EQ.

    • EQ matching to a reference track

See and hear examples of how you can set the tonal balance of a master by matching the EQ to a reference track.

    • Compression in mastering

Methods and strategies for using compression on a full mix when mastering. Learn how we set and evaluate the attack, release, ratio and threshold when compressing.

    • Loudness and target levels

This lesson is about loudness. We discuss loudness in general, loudness targets, and loudness normalization.

    • Using peak limiting

Methods and strategies for using peak limiting. Learn about how we set the threshold, ceiling, look-ahead, release and other settings, by balancing the four common audible artifacts from peak limiting.

    • Editing and exporting

How to do the final editing and exporting of your master files.

    • Quality control

How we think about quality control.

  • Advanced Methods and Strategies

    • Resonances and build-ups

What they are, what kind of problems they can bring and how to reduce them, plus some examples.

    • Sibilance and de-essing

Regarding sibilance and uneven high-end and how to deal with that using deessing and dynamic EQ.

    • Low-end strategies

A few different tricks to get more clarity and stability in the low-end, using compression, dynamic EQ and saturation.

    • Compression examples

Learn how to listen for the sound of compression and tweak the settings, with several examples.

    • Peak limiting examples

More examples of peak limiter artifacts and how to deal with them.

  • Mastering Examples

    • Mastering example – “Happy” by The Apartment Years

In this lesson we’re having a look at a full mastering example.

  • Ear Training

These exercises are designed to help you practice identifying frequency areas.

  • About software and equipment

    • The Mastering Starter Pack for Reaper
    • Plugins for mastering

Some tips on plugins that we use ourselves when mastering.

    • Monitoring for mastering

About monitoring for mastering and a practical solution for using headphones for mastering.

  • Archive

Previous meet-ups and webinars.

About us

We are two full time mastering engineers and founders of Stockholm Mastering.

Since 2009, we have been teaching at several Swedish higher education institutions and universities. We also had the privilege of creating and instructing Sweden’s first specialized mastering university course at Luleå University of Technology (2009-2018).

Additional information

The course will be added to your user account on this website. A user account will be automatically created for you upon purchase if you don’t already have one. You will have access to the course for as long as it is available on our site, or at least 1 year from your purchase. The optional video call is 30-45 minutes long and can be scheduled within 1 year from the purchase.