Mastering at Masterenzo

Masterenzo Mastering is a premium mastering studio in Rotterdam owned by engineer Renzo van Riemsdijk.

Why Masterenzo Mastering? With over 15 years of experience Masterenzo Mastering is capable of delivering high quality masters that stand the test of time.

Why mastering? To me, mastering is about improving the power, emotion and impact of your music. After a mix is finished, good mastering elevates mixes to a professional level and your songs tell the story of an album or ep as a whole.

Have a look at my columns (I write these monthly for Dutch platform Popunie) and find out how I look at mastering and how music plays a role in our daily lives nowadays.

The technical part is preparation of your music for digital release on platforms like Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer and iTunes or a physical release on vinyl or CD.

The Studio

The studio is located in an old house built in 1927 and oozes vibe and energy.
The room is set up with a living room atmosphere in mind and has a great sound. It connects to the outside world through beautiful stained glass windows.

My approach is to take the song with most energy and vibe as the basis for the mastering session. All other songs are lifted towards that same level of energy and vibe.

Short signal path: a single outboard rack is filled with (modified) solid state and tube gear for maximum flexibility and power.
Analog outboard gear is complemented with few plugins to enable processing not possible in the analog world: a beautiful marriage between analog and digital....

You can have a listen to some of the work I've done on the YouTube video page or check out the samples before and after mastering.
A list of artists/clients I've worked for can be found on this page.

Heart of the studio are the custom built speakers featuring Peerless and Vifa drivers and external crossovers. They are fitting the room perfectly and together with the Amphion Two15 speakers they are the perfect listening couple for making those crucial decisions in the process.

Don't hesitate to contact me if you have any questions about what Masterenzo Mastering can do for your precious tracks!

If you'd like to order a session and receive a personal quote you can also use the order form at the bottom of this page.


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Masterenzo Mastering is an Apple approved Mastered For iTunes mastering studio. Information about the Apple Mastered For iTunes programme can be found in this paper.

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About Masterenzo

Masterenzo.jpgMasterenzo Mastering was founded in 2015 by Renzo van Riemsdijk (Ede, 1973).

After a chemistry study my musical career started back in the nineties by studying electric guitar at the Rotterdam Conservatory.
During my study and after graduating in 1999 I played electric and acoustic guitar and a bit of lapsteel in many projects and bands, mainly pop, rock and singer-songwriter music.
My growing interest in the sound of recordings led to the beginning of my own (bedroom) mastering studio in 2003: the Masterenzo Audio Room.

After working at home for 6 years I started working at Rotterdam based studios like the Excess Studios (2009-2012) and the Real Music Room (2012-2015). With the experience gained at those studios I decided to build my own mastering facility in 2015: Masterenzo Mastering.

Philosophy

Masterenzo Mastering stands out with a personal approach to each and every project against a fair price to quality ratio.
My approach is greatly influenced by mastering icon Bernie Grundman, an American engineer who has mastered landmark recordings such as 'Aja' by Steely Dan, Prince's 'Purple Rain' and 'Thriller' by Michael Jackson. His view, ears and mastering philosophy show an example of ultimate transparency, energy and musical impact.

Born in the seventies myself I'm very much intrigued by the stunning sound quality of some of the recordings made in that era. Just have a listen to 'Rumours' by Fleetwood Mac and witness its pristine production quality and please consider: louder is not always better.

Besides mastering I spend my days listening to music, preferably on vinyl or cd. I'm a big fan of chocolat, great coffee and cooking and I like to spend quality time in the city of Rotterdam, accompanied by some good friends.

Columns

I write monthly columns about mastering for Dutch music platform Popunie, hoping to clarify many of the mysteries surrounding the black art of mastering.
In my columns I deal with non-technical issues such as how we experience music nowadays as well as the more technical stuff. (LUFS, loudness, dynamics etc.)

The columns can be found on this page.

Rates & Info

Mastering prices are based on a rate of 45 euro per track (excl. 21% VAT).

Please contact me if you have more tracks to be mastered (like an album or ep) and we'll discuss the options fitting in your budget!
There is no difference in price between an attended or unattended mastering session.

If you live outside the Netherlands and have a valid VAT-number or if you live outside the EU you don't have to pay the VAT.

Preparing files for mastering

  1. If you need help during the mixing stage: I'm more than willing to listen to your mixes and provide feedback.
    All that is necessary to ensure an end product of the highest quality!
  2. Leave a few dB's from the 0 dBFS ceiling when printing mixes to stereo
  3. Do not use any leveling tools like limiters or normalizers on the stereo bus
  4. Never change the sample rate of the files (kHz)
  5. Don't forget to register ISRC, it's free! Check the official ISRC site for more info. If you are Dutch, you can apply for ISRC at Sena
    To know more about ISRC I'd advise you to take a look at the FAQ page.
  6. Save your tracks as 32-bit or 24-bit data files (.wav or .aiff), mp3 is not suited for mastering!

Mastering for digital music services (streaming audio)

Music streaming services like Spotify, Deezer and Apple Music and the digital platform iTunes use loudness normalization by default to ensure equal loudness of every track played.
Providing overly loud masters will cause the algorhythms to lower the overall volume of the tracks. This will result in softer sounding masters with less dynamics and less energy.

Many of the streaming services use an integrated loudness level of -14 LUFS which is still louder than the -16 LUFS recommended by the Audio Engineering Society (AES).
It's unnecessary to master music at an exact level of -14 LUFS since streaming services use different methods to measure loudness.
Softer sounding masters with attention to dynamics (globally between -10 and -15 LUFS) are actually better sounding masters with more energy and more impact!

While uploading the audio files, the streaming service itself will perform the encoding to the proper codec. (Spotify uses Ogg Vorbis for both the premium and free version, Apple Music and iTunes use the AAC codec.)
Have a look at the Spotify for artists FAQ page. It explains which formats are accepted and how Spotify handles loudness and normalization, very useful information!

Let's end the loudness war!

Let's put an end to the loudness war and let music be music like it was back in the days of vinyl (before the digital era). I've written several columns about the loudness issue (a.o.) for Rotterdam based music platform Popunie.

The Music Loudness Alliance is a group of great audio technical and production experts led by Florian Camerer and consists of Florian and audio engineers Eelco Grimm, Kevin Gross, Bob Katz, Bob Ludwig, Ian Shepherd and Thomas Lund.

Their mission is to inform and educate the audio community about Loudness Normalization and suggestions on how to implement it on various platforms, such as computer music players and standalone audio players.

They've released some great white papers and recommendations to the music industry.

Mastering for vinyl

Vinyl masters are generally softer in tone and in volume than digital masters. Two files will be made, one for side A and one for side B.
Vinyl masters can be made from digital masters with some minor changes made.

In some cases it's better to make different masters for vinyl. It all depends on the amount of limiting, sibilance and low-end stereo information.
The cutting engineer at the vinyl pressing plant is the one making the final decisions and/or adjustments for a healthy transfer to vinyl.

If you want to be 100% sure: only a test pressing can reveal any possible issues with a vinyl release. Please always consider a test pressing, it's well worth the extra money and effort.

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Mastered for iTunes (MFiT)

The Apple Mastered for iTunes programme consists of a set of tools supplied by Apple to ensure proper AAC encoding of uncompressed Hi-Res 24-bit files.
The files are adjusted for the highest possible fidelity on your computer, phone, tablet and Apple devices.

Masterenzo Mastering is an Apple approved Mastered For iTunes mastering facility.
More info about MFiT? Read the paper!

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Contact Masterenzo Mastering

Fill in the form and receive a personal quote

Order mastering or send me a note

Fill out this form if you want to receive a personalized mastering quote (based on 45 euro per track excl. 21% VAT) or if you want to leave me a message.
The more songs you want mastered, the higher the discount on the total price.

Please note that in price there is no difference between an attended or unattended mastering session.

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Make sure you've read the guidelines for preparing files for mastering if you want to upload your tracks.

The easiest way to upload your music is via WeTransfer.

Turnaround time after payment is usually 2 or 3 days for single tracks.
To be sure: contact me first if you're working on a deadline!

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Studio address

Masterenzo Mastering
Renzo van Riemsdijk
Schielaan 32 A
3043 HC Rotterdam
The Netherlands

 telephone.png    06-21 462 953

 envelope.png    renzo[at]masterenzo.nl

 globe.png    www.masterenzo.nl

 WeTransfer.png    masterenzo.wetransfer.com


Chamber of Commerce Rotterdam: 24 34 28 39

VAT number: NL168922769B01


© 1973 Masterenzo Mastering | Rotterdam