Are you listening? That’s the fundamental question posed by our friends at iZotope in their long-running YouTube series of the same name. Headed by Education Director (as well as Berklee professor and top-tier mastering engineer) Jonathan Wyner, the previous three seasons have focused on illuminating the sometimes-dark art of mastering audio for release.
Today, the series returns with a new focus on mixing – with Wyner now joined in the studio by producer and engineer Enrique Gonzalez Müller (Kronos Quartet, the Dave Matthews Band, Nine Inch Nails, Joan Baez…). If you’re in need of a mixing primer or have questions about balance, panning, dynamics, automation – or even setting up your listening environment – you’ll definitely want to check this out. We’ve embedded episode one above, and the trailer below should give you a taster of what else is to come. Make sure to hit the subscribe button for the rest!
To tide you over until episode two, here are a few of our favorites from seasons 1–3.
Audio Mastering Basics
This is season one, episode one – where it all began, and where you should too if you’re just getting started with mastering (or wondering what exactly it is). You’ll also get a clear explanation of where the line between mixing and mastering is drawn: useful prep for season four!
Compression in Mastering
Another gem from Are You Listening’s first season, this episode dives into a topic that new and experienced producers alike have plenty of questions about: compression. And don’t miss Jonathan’s two-parter guide to the related phenomenon of limiting – also in season one.
Mixing Meets Mastering
Season four isn’t the first time Are You Listening has crossed into the realm of mixing. Back in 2019, Jonathan visited the endlessly-inventive mixing engineer Sylvia Massey (Tool, System of A Down, Johnny Cash) to talk about how in-the-box tools can solve several problems that are common to both mixing and mastering workflows.
Mastering for Spotify and Other Streaming Services
Even those of you who’ve been mastering your own tracks for a while may want to take notes here. Avoid loudness penalties and other nasty surprises by brushing up on the differences between preparing your master for digital streaming services and other formats.
Keep up with the season four of Are You Listening over on iZotope’s YouTube channel, where you’ll also find the three previous seasons alongside hundreds of helpful videos about mixing, mastering, audio repair, and more. And be sure to visit iZotope.com to learn more about the mixing plug-ins used in the series – grab your copy of Music Production Suite today to follow along.