Most of you probably know my buddy Ian Shepherd. He’s the guy behind the blogs Production Advice and Mastering Media.

Ian is a mastering engineer from Great Britain. He’s an awesome dude, and being British makes him automatically cooler. 🙂

As a mastering engineer, Ian is well aware of the Loudness Wars, and the race to destroy all dynamic range in music. Last year he came up with “Dynamic Range Day,” a day to celebrate music that actually HAS dynamic range and isn’t crushed to smithereens.

Why is dynamic range important? Simply put, louder isn’t necessarily better. You can have a loud mix that is also dynamic and punchy. However, if you over-compress it, in an effort to eek out a few more dB of apparent “loudness,” you’re shooting yourself in the foot. Your mix won’t be much louder, but it will sound worse.

This year for Dynamic Range Day, Ian is pulling out all the stops. There’s a competition and an awesome giveaway. (All you have to do is listen to three different mastered versions of the same song and pick out the most dynamic mix to enter the contest.)

They’re giving away a small SSL mixing desk, monitors, mics, and even a few HSC products (whoo-hoo!).

Go here now to learn more about why dynamic range is so important, and enter to win some fun prizes:


IMPORTANT! Today is the last day to enter the contest, so go enter it NOW.

Also, leave a comment below and let us know what you think about all this “dynamic range” talk.


5 Responses to “Dynamic Range Day Competition”

  1. Jay Voth

    What works for a metal band does not work for a bluegrass trio and that is my problem with mastering. It seems as if a lot of people (I don’t want to specifically blame ME’s for this) disregard the music and immediately hit the kill switch. I like loud mastering for rock and pop. I don’t for jazz or country.

  2. Joshua Wentz

    I caught on to all this DR talk thanks to the Home Recording Tactics audio series, and am using the TT Dynamic Range Meter to help me mix my new album… it’s been a MAJOR help; there’s a noticeable jump up in quality to my latest mixes. Learning is great.

  3. Chris Winter

    From the competition website:
    The competition closes at 12 noon UTC/GMT on the 25th of March 2011

    Dynamic range is one of the main culprits of the quality of music being produced nowadays…. at least in my opinion. Joe, you were the person who actually taught me about it.

    and how does being British make us cooler? I’m just wondering.
    [wishes its not our accents…wishes its not our accents…]


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