Music Mastering API

Guide to Using the Music Mastering API

Music Mastering API

The Music Mastering API enables you to quickly build a service to prepare music tracks for distribution. This process removes many technical, time, and cost barriers that come with traditional music mastering. The Music Mastering API provides the functionality to evaluate different mastering profiles, and then create final mastered recordings with optimized loudness that are ready to share on streaming platforms.

Key features:

✓ Simple integration
✓ Free previews of different mastering profiles under fair use policy
✓ Wide file format support
✓ Optimize tonal quality
✓ Accurate loudness targeting

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Why use the Music Mastering API?

Unlike less intelligent methods of equalization, the Music Mastering API carefully analyzes the track and continuously adjusts how it applies the processing over the duration of the track, depending on the characteristics of the music. The music creator can evaluate mastering profiles using previews and adjust the intensity of the profile to further control how much processing is applied in the final master.

The Music Mastering API helps you prepare music to meet streaming service loudness requirements. This gives the music creator more control over how their material is experienced on streaming services. For example, if a track is mixed too loud, a music service may further process the track on upload or playback. Mastering to a specified loudness target before uploading to a music streaming service ensures that a track plays back as intended.

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Got an amazing new feature idea you would like to request? We would love to hear from you! Reach out to https://dolby.io/contact for feature requests.

Source files

When choosing source files for mastering, use lossless or uncompressed files with the highest sample rate, bit depth, and bit rate. Tracks that are heavily compressed or limited, restrict the ability of the mastering process to create the best sounding track.

Mastering preview

The Music Mastering Preview API gives music creators the option to try out different mastering profiles for free (subject to the fair use policy). You can choose up to 5 mastering profiles with each preview, 30 seconds in length. Select the starting point for your preview or use the default starting point of 45 seconds into the track. From a single Music Mastering API call, you will get five 30-second previews with your choice of profile and loudness setting, output to AAC format. After the music creator selects the profile they want to use for mastering, they can refine their music further using the Music Mastering API with the option to adjust the intensity and loudness.

Mastering profiles

The Music Mastering API offers a range of profiles that help shape the frequencies in the music track to meet the desired sound of the music creator. To help the music creator decide which profiles and loudness values to use, you can select up to 5 different profiles with the Music Mastering Preview API in a single call. After the music creator has chosen the profile that best matches their sound, they can use the preferred settings to create a final release-ready music master.

The list provided below is for guidance only. Explore the possibilities using the music creator's own music style and preferences.

Profile Value

Description

Suggested Use

a

Tight dynamics and ample brightness in the upper frequencies.

Pop

b

Tight dynamics, a solid low-end, and mid-frequency clarity for vocal emphasis.

Club, EDM

c

Big bass presence and tight dynamics.

Hip Hop

d

Heavy bass and sub-bass presence.

Hip Hop

e

Big bass and sub-bass presence with additional openness in the mid and high frequencies.

Hip Hop, Trap

f

Wide low-end processing with a light and ethereal tone.

Lighter Electronic, EDM

g

Wide low-end processing with dark and moody tone.

Darker Electronic, EDM

h

Wide dynamics and ample openness in the mids and highs to allow for a wide spectrum of sound.

Electronic, EDM

i

Tight dynamics, and a well rounded, balanced tone.

Pop, Rock, Country

j

Smooth, tight dynamics, and a light lift in the upper frequencies.

Rock, Country

k

Wide dynamics with a solid low and mid-frequency boost.

Pop

l

Emphasis on the mid-frequencies to highlight vocals.

Vocal

m

Light touch with ample mid-frequency clarity to let acoustic instruments shine in the mix.

Folk, Acoustic

n

Wide dynamics, and warm full tones for orchestral instruments.

Classical

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Don't see a profile that works for your audio? Reach out to https://dolby.io/contact to make a suggestion for future preset development.

Intensity

The intensity parameter controls how much of the tonal adjustment (dynamic equalization) is applied. Music creators can select a value from 0 to 100 percent. A value of 0 applies no tonal adjustment, while a value of 100 applies the full amount. If an intensity is not specified, the default value of 100 is applied.

Loudness

The loudness parameter controls the target loudness in LUFS (Loudness Units relative to Full Scale). The default is a target level of -14 LUFS, and the level can be adjusted to meet a streaming provider's requirements. Check out the recommended target loudness for each streaming provider in the list below.

Loudness Profile

Loudness (LUFS)

Maximum True Peak (dBTP)

Apple

-16

-1

Spotify

-14

-1

Tidal

-14

-1

Amazon

-13

-2

Pandora

-13

-1

Soundcloud

-13

-1

To learn more, see the Loudness audio guide.

Output format

The Music Mastering API returns the same file format, bit rate, bit depth, and sample rate as the source file that you provided. If you require different file formats or bit rates, check out How-to Transcode an Audio-Only or Video-Only Output.

Supported audio formats

Name

Description

AAC

Advanced Audio Coding - .m4a .mp4 .3gp .m4b .aac

AIFF IFF

Audio Interchange File Format - .aif .aiff .aifc

FLAC

Free Lossless Audio Codec - .flac

MP3

.mp3

OPUS

.opus

VORBIS

.ogg

WAV

Waveform Audio File Format - .wav


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