Prepare Your Track For Vinyl Production

Tell the most important things about preparing your track for vinyl pressing:

  • all the frequencies under 90 hz must be in mono
  • no phase opposition is allowed for frequencies (impossible to cut)
  • no panoramic white/pink high noises (like pppsshhhHHHHHHHHsshhhhhhhh!!!)
  • don’t put too much bass (vinyl enhances the bass)
  • frequencies above 10 000 hz will “disapear” so take care to make them shine around 8000 hz
  • don’t overcompress too much your sound because you ll loose dynamic and the cutting won’t be very deep
  • The best duration for tracks (optimal quality) are 2x5’‘20’ for one 33 rpm side, 7’‘30’ for 1 45 rpm side
  • You can make 14 mn/33rpm 10mn/45 rpm but the cutting will not be as deep and you ll lose db out.

If anyone has other recommandations for vinyl format…

Great tip! Thanks!

of course kaneel but consider that if you play with your drum kick or infrabassline 100% left>>100% right it will be impossible to cut it properly… the masterer will be obliged to “center” thoses frequencies…

i post this after reading the thread about mono testing, its a good idea to test in mono because if it sounds good, the masterer (are you sure we call this guy masterer??) can work with it!

one time i had a bad surprise with a deep stereo hardcore kick, the studio told me to reexport my track without this effect…
On another track, i used an opposed frequency voice and when i received the record… the voice had dissapeared! shit! it was the theme of the track!

Mat, apart from your own experience, where did you source this information? It would be interesting to get some concrete info for a possible InDepth article. ?

Well, i don’t know if there’s an article about it, maybe in “sound ingeneering for dummies” ?
It’s 10 years i make vynils (around 40 maxis) and i worked with mastering studios in holland, france, UK, Germany, Czech, Swiss and they all say the same…

The matrix is cutted with a needle which vibrates fast to cut the material…

you can imagine that it s impossible for a needle to write in the same time a wave and its opposite (phase opposition)
you can also imagine that a white panoramic noise (all frequencies togeteher) makes the needle heat a lot and can break it…

Try to find more deep informations about it… i don t have the exacts words to explain and i m not sound “masterisator” :)

you re right.
but usually not before the record is already played ‘a few times’. it starts at ~ 10khz and normally it goes down to ~ 5khz.

This is all ultra interesting stuff, especially about the vibrations of the cut. Getting an article would be tops. Anyone please post if you find anything.

Not that I’m going to be pressed on vinyl anytime soon.

I had a track get repeatedly rejected from the press because of a section where amens were rapidly highpassed from high/high to low/high, topped off with a loud distorted 909 kick. Apparently the needle basically “jumped off” at that point. Such a bitch too, that part was awesome.

About bass though, core basslines should almost always be mono regardless. That has nothing to do with pressing, it has to do with playing the thing on big systems and getting your bass phase cancelled. Which is just lame.

For massive bass, keep it simple. It sounds more massive with high stereo width, but it isnt.

i thing the stereo bass has something to do with pressing because we don t have thoses obligations on cd production

also, low frequencies take up more space on a record than high
frequencies… when you go too low, the needle is being ‘swung’
off the plate… so to speak… or so I was told…

Mat, thanks a lot for sharing this rare and very ususal experience about mastering for vinyl !
I’ve heard about this before, but you wrote just exact topics. I’ll copy your 1st post, print it and tip on my desktop!

Thanks again :) Good luck !

BTW: it’s nice to realize that some of Renoise users release music on vinyls! :rolleyes:

Maybe a little correction for the optimal duration of tracks…

It depends of the cutting machine also… some machines are standardised for 12mn/33rpm side (well if it s shorter it can’t be bad but longer can loose quality)

And also!! on a 2 side tracks, put your best track first… More it s close to the center, less good is the quality!

You can do a test!! record a 12mn vynil… you ll see that the end of the recording has less db than the beggining (with constant sound of course!!)

Of course renoise users make vinyls!! If you are a bright electronic producer you ll use renoise of course :P

Kind of interesting this topic and my latest experience with aldrin…the mastering/limiter/compressor unit on aldrin as a slider to select where frequences are turned into mono, no doubt for what you are talking about with the lower frequencies…First time I saw that, I thought of this thread and ever time i use it on the master output, I slide it up to 75hz, even though none of my music will ever make it on vinyl in the foreseeable future…

Very interesting stuff, though…

About phase inversion, how would phase inversion work if you offset the left channel from the right channel by a very small time period? Does it still sound good?

There are quite a few users on the b2vos forum that use renoise & have had stuff pressed onto vinyl :)

I’ve had a couple of tracks myself put on vinyl & use renoise for sequencing.

Also agree with the sub-bass being in mono - anything below around 80hz I think it is, otherwise the vinyl cutter will jump due to the wobble.

Most vinyl pressing plants will master the tracks for u - all u need to do is get the mixdown sounding as good as possible with all the volume levels sorted out. What I do myself (although this isn’t the only method) is export each track as individual wavs, load into Cool Edit & mixdown in there - Eq’ing any low end off tracks that don’t need it, as this will make it sound less ‘muddy’ & keep headroom for the bass frequencies.

And anyone wishing to hear the stuff that’s on vinyl, u can visit my site which has my own vinyl pressing on it with a few clips of the tracks (not in high quality).
All tracks with my name (RenegadeGenius), DJ Nee & Stu Chapman were all made in Renoise : Click

for the “bass in mono”-thing :

great little tool for that. (I usually narrow anything below 130 down to mono).

also make sure you cut frequencies below 30/40 hz, they are too low anyway and when you do this a certain “muddiness” is suddenly gone.

Depends on the type of track you’re making. Dance / DnB / HipHop use very low frequencies for heavy bass or Kicks. One of the tracks I made only really had the bassline in the 30-40hz region for the most part.

The muddiness area is usually around the 200-400hz range - usually best to eq this down serveral dbs on most parts of the tune, unless it specifically needs them.

I’d say roll off at 20hz for the bassline for dancier styles, but remove as much low end as possible from the other tracks so it doesn’t clash.

“BTW: it’s nice to realize that some of Renoise users release music on vinyls!”

check out the releases from Komprex or Kowareta Hyoushi - great stuff all done in Renoise!

today i learned that we have to take a big care about the DC offset!! i ll tell you when i know more… i had problem with a fat synth who brought all my wave more positive than negative.
The cutting machine can’t afford that too :(