Mixing in Surround Sound – Mastering
by on September 6, 2019 in Tutorials

Ever wondered how to master for a film? Well, Sefi is here with all the answers!


Now when we’re mastering a track for radio or TV broadcast we would tend to add hi mid to add some presence and have the track cut through better on a TV or radio broadcast. When mastering for commercial release you want a rounded sound with clean highs and punchy lows that will work well across all the various platforms we listen to music on nowadays. However, when we finish our mix for the cinema we can treat it slightly differently.

We want to be very careful with that range when mastering tracks for cinema. At high volume, 3 to 5K can be really harsh in a cinema listening environment. You want to keep the mastering EQ curve relatively flat whilst maybe adding some sparkle on the tops and fairy dust but other than that keeping it quite flat and being specifically careful not to abuse the EQ in the high mids. We also want to think about our dynamic range

How Loud?

When we’re mixing 5.1 content we need to differentiate between a few types of 5.1 content we might be mixing.

If we’re mixing a cinema trailer, mixing a cinema feature film, or mixing a cinema commercial different loudness rules apply. Cinema Commercials are limited in the volume that they are allowed to be. They are limited to 82 DB. cinema trailers are limited to 85 DB whereas cinema feature films are not limited in level. Now what this means is that we have a loudness budget that we need to spend carefully across our commercial or trailer this is why trailers are built as bang drone of a low-level high-density bag of a level etc so that the average level of Us cinema trailer doesn’t exceed 85 DBA.

Sefi at the dub stage finishing a mix and master for a feature film!

Make sure to follow us for the next entry of this blog where we’ll be looking at another mixing in surround sound tutorial! For now though make sure you catch up on last weeks post on Low End!

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