The 7 Best Online Music Mastering Services for DIY Musicians

best-online-music-mastering-services

If you want to master your music at home, there are plenty of online options to help you do just that. Music mastering has been around for decades, but it’s become even more accessible than ever.

Thanks to growing technology and expanding online opportunities, online mastering is now a popular choice for musical artists everywhere. If you’re wondering which online music mastering service is suitable for you, here are seven fantastic options you can examine.

Landr

landr distribution

Begun in 2012 by the Montreal company MixGenius, Landr is a cloud-based online music mastering service that caters to independent artists.

Landr uses an artificial intelligence algorithm to master music albums, making the service much more accessible to everyday musicians.

Because of the algorithms it uses, Landr does not require prior knowledge of music mastering. Therefore artists at any musical level can quickly master their work without paying a mastering engineer.

Features

Landr’s instant AI mastering provides quick and straightforward services modeled on real-life engineers’ choices. The mastering process begins automatically when you drop your music files, so all you have to do is offer up your work, and the AI will do the rest.

Unlike other mastering services, Landr can upload whole albums at once. This bulk uploading means you can get your entire album mastered in a short time, with each song mastered individually within the album itself.

The finished product sounds cohesive, but each song receives specific care. This treatment prevents the tracks from all sounding the same.

Because Landr is cloud-based, everything you master automatically backs up to Landr’s cloud. The backup keeps your work safe and provides a secure environment where you can’t lose it. You can also access your work more efficiently from any location.

Landr offers mastering preferences that allow you to save your specific preferences for mastering your music. Any future albums you upload are treated with the same settings you chose.

Mastering preferences ensures that your music will have a consistent sound and can be changed to match your music’s growth.

If you use samples in your sound, Landr provides free samples for your choosing. It also offers volume matching for comparing different sounds and track elements, and even multiple formats.

You can choose to master your tracks with three mastering sound choices: “warm,” “balanced,” or “open.”

Pros

  • Offers instant AI mastering.
  • Great alternative for independent or low-funds artists.
  • Allows bulk uploads.

Cons

  • Artificial handling of mastering lacks “human touch.”
  • Complex pricing system.

Cloudbounce

cloudbounce free mastering

Like Landr, Cloudbounce is a prominent music mastering service that relies on artificial intelligence algorithms. Landr also uses the cloud for convenient, safe, and accessible storage for all your fully mastered tracks.

Features

Cloudbounce’s Dashboard provides insights into the progress of the algorithm’s work by allowing you to view the mixing process for each track. You upload your songs through the dashboard, and then instructions appear to make the mastering process simple and easy.

Thanks to its cloud-based storage, Cloudbounce can store all your songs under My Tracks. The feature includes both completed and in-progress tracks for your convenience.

Other services require that you save your completed tracks elsewhere, but Cloudbounce will keep a copy for future reference. These copies are accessible anywhere and only by you, so you know they will never go missing or lost.

Free templates and samples are available for any track you want to spice up. Cloudbounce also offers free synth and bass instrumental for an added fullness to your sound.

For safer payments, Cloudbounce has My Wallet. My Wallet is a feature that keeps your information as secure as possible.

Cloudbounce offers several subscription options for users. You can choose between annual, monthly, or per song fees. Each rate is as inexpensive as possible so you can get the most out of your mastering service.

Pros

  • The My Wallet feature provides safer payment methods to other services.
  • The mastering time for Cloudbounce is quicker than most services, about five minutes per song.
  • It’s easily affordable.

Cons

  • Not operational on most browsers.
  • Lacks the “human touch” of mastering engineers.

AI Mastering

ai mastering

AI Mastering is a lesser-known, Japanese-founded service with unlimited mastering opportunities. Recently it has removed its app and certain implements to convert to a free experience. The result is fewer options for increased cost-saving.

The loss of mastering options does not affect the quality of finished tracks. AI Mastering uses many features to provide great sound comparable to any other online mastering service quality.

AI Mastering is linked with Bakuage Automated Mastering, a Japan-based service for mastering music.

Features

AI Mastering offers customization for target loudness, mastering level, and output format. It also provides analysis for loudness and spectrum. It is easy to use with a simple drag and drop upload and automatic sound quality improvement.

AI Mastering’s limiter balances a track’s dynamic range with its loudness to present a more cohesive, harmonious sound.

Pros

  • Completely free to use.
  • Easy and simplistic process.

Cons

  • Has limited abilities.

Emastered

emastered-review

Grammy award-winning mastering engineers created this online mastering service. The concept behind Emastered’s design is to produce the highest quality sound for your tracks.

Despite being an AI instant mastering service, Emastered boasts a better sound and more professional finished product than comparable services.

Features

Uploading is effortless with Emastered as you simply drag and drop your track into their services. Unlike some competitors, the site is straightforward to use and provides simple steps to create your finished product.

A website blog offers insights into the music industry and helpful tips for originality and song production. Along with Emastered’s free newsletter, the blog outlines advice, updates, and new features for Emastered’s future services.

Like other sites, Emastered relies on cloud storage for safe and secure track filing. Cloud storage keeps your tracks accessible and safe from anywhere in the world.

Other services can’t compare to the levels of sound quality the advanced mastering options allow you to reach. You can even upload reference tracks that Emastered can refer to when mastering your work.

Emastered offers three different kinds of track files for your finished sound, all of which are easy to share on streaming services. These files are High-Resolution MP3, High-Definition WAV, and Uncompressed WAV.

A shareable library allows you to share your finished tracks with listeners. You can also monitor each song’s statistics to see how many people listen to your work.

Pros

  • Offers quality mastering for an affordable price.
  • User-friendly for all ages.
  • Sharing library for finished tracks.

Cons

  • Misses out on polishing less prominent aspects of songs.
  • Can’t enhance elements like harmony or stereo.

Bandlab

bandlab mastering review

Originating in Singapore, Bandlab began in 2014 from the desire to put creativity back into music, especially music that uses a lot of technology to find its sound. Bandlab promises an entirely free experience for music creation and production.

Bandlab encompasses a digital audio workstation (DAW) with music-making, messaging, video sharing, and much more. They offer unlimited services in the hopes of improving collaboration and creativity.

Features

With its intuitive mastering interface, Bandlab effortlessly uploads your track. Then it presents three settings where you can choose what kind of sound you want your song to have: CD Quality, Bass Boost, or Enhance Clarity.

CD Quality polishes your track for a higher-quality sound, boosting the volume while keeping the precision. Bass Boost enhances the bass line throughout the song and is the optimal choice for rap or EDM.

Enhance Clarity ensures you hear each layer, and there is no muddling between song elements.

The free DAW feature is one of the biggest draws for Bandlab. DAWs are notoriously expensive and inaccessible for budding or independent musicians. However, through Bandlab, you can have access to a DAW at any time, any place.

Bandlab’s audio web library is more expansive than other services and still free. It can function in the DAW or separately while you master your tracks.

Bandlab is also compatible with more devices than comparable services. Though it’s most convenient to use in a web browser, it can perform through apps on Android and iOS.

Beyond the music-making process, Bandlab offers a blog and a store. The blog has many helpful tutorials that can teach you how to utilize Bandlab’s features and improve your music. The store offers audio interfaces for affordable prices.

Even though Bandlab sells audio interfaces, the rest of their services are completely free, so there’s no need to worry about the cost. The store itself acts as more of an add-on for musicians who want a bit more from the site.

Pros

  • Offers free and unlimited service.
  • Extensive services beyond mastering (DAW, free audio samples) are available.
  • No downloads necessary for use.

Cons

  • Less mastering options available.
  • Audio library is still relatively small.

Masteringbox

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Music enthusiasts created Masteringbox to make music mastering more accessible for musicians. Their goal of accessibility comes from pairing finding and creating a better sound with learning the proper techniques for a finished product.

In this way, they value independent learning and self-sustainable artists full of innovation and creativity.

They offer to master in less than a minute for a range of tracks and productions. Through years of experience, the team at Masteringbox has created their specific algorithm to provide the best sound and quality across the industry.

Features

This service is easy to use and offers proper loudness for a more cohesive sound. The designed algorithm focuses on the details of each track and the best way to enhance them.

Masteringbox offers a Loudness Control to help regulate the volume of different track elements. By setting the target loudness, the algorithm focuses on adjusting compressions and limits to create harmony.

The Loudness Control also uses the same settings for multiple tracks to ensure your album has a unified sound.

A premium subscriber can access equalization adjustment with low, mid, or high gain control. The Masteringbox algorithm sets tracks dynamically to receive the most use out of equalization adjustments.

Along with its website, Masteringbox uses an Android app for increased accessibility. Musicians can also share their tracks through Masteringbox via web pages with attractive players.

Pros

  • Algorithms help master your track for quicker production.
  • Offers plenty of different levels for payment and workloads.
  • Has a studio option for professional use.

Cons

  • App is only available on Android.
  • Needs a clear initial recording to be of any use.

MajorDecibel

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MajorDecibel is committed to creating an affordable and unique experience for up-and-coming independent artists. This online service promotes creativity and originality to prevent all mastered tracks from sounding the same.

The site exists because of a single, unnamed person who updates and provides services for musicians. Though not free, MajorDecibel strives to offer quality mastering for less money, precisely so that low-income musicians can continue to pursue their dreams.

Features

MajorDecibel has three options for mastering: low, medium, or high. These options dictate the different dynamic ranges used and how effective each track’s element will be.

There are also five available post-mastering options: warmer, warm, neutral, bright, or brighter. Depending on which you choose, these options will either enhance the lower end of your track (warmer/warm) or the higher end of your track (bright/brighter).

MajorDecibel does not claim to own any of your work, so you can sell your tracks without having to mention the service as your mastering device.

Depending on how much you pay, you can receive different audio formats for your tracks. MajorDecibel offers MP3, FLAC, or HD WAV files for premium users.

Pros

  • Affordable mastering for low-income artists.
  • Interface very simple and easy to use.
  • Premium access allows for long-term projects and lengthier ventures.

Cons

  • Does not store tracks after mastering.
  • Very limited in terms of details.

Buyer’s Guide: The 5 Main Criteria for Choosing the Best Online Music Mastering Service

online-audio-mastering

When you’re thinking of committing to a music mastering service, you have to look at all the pieces to find what’s right for you. Whether you need something inexpensive or even free is a huge factor, and the same is true for storage options, features, and mastering options.

What you need most from a mastering service should be what you get. Let’s explore a few of the variables you should consider before you choose a service.

Price

When it comes to independent or newer musicians, the price of a music mastering service is a huge factor. If you don’t have a lot of income, cheaper or even free services are a great choice. While you generally get what you pay for, you may not need anything too complex or advanced if you’re starting.

For music professionals who have established more of a budget for overhead and more expensive service may be the right next step. Consider your budget and plan for a percentage to go to music mastering.

Another great way to get flexibility is that many services offer different payment tiers to give you more options the more you pay. Most have a free version or at least a free trial, so you can test various services to find the one that suits you best before you commit to their programs.

We recommend narrowing down to one or two services that seem like a great fit and then experimenting with a free trial before you commit entirely.

Adjustment Features

automated-mastering-services

Every music mastering service provides different adjustments and enhancements that create unique sounds for your tracks. You can decide whether you want equalization adjustments, loudness adjustments, or others.

A free trial can be handy to explore adjustments because you can experiment with different adjustment options.

Some services are more limited than others in terms of what they can do to polish your sound. However, if a service’s limited options serve your needs, there’s no reason to look for another just because it has some flashy features.

But if you prefer more ways to tinker with your tracks and more features to explore, a service with more choices and more possibilities will work more in your favor.

What kind of features you want also depends on how much experience you have.

If you don’t know very much about mastering and trying it out for the first time, you might want a service that automatically makes more adjustments. That way, you don’t have to fumble through trying to change certain elements. Automatic adjustments can help you learn as you go, too.

But, if you have a certain kind of sound in mind and your mastering service doesn’t allow you to edit the way you want it to, it’s time to search for a more advanced choice. Again, you may have to pay more, but at that point, it will likely be worth it.

Library Features

One of the most valuable features of a music mastering service is a library of free samples you can add to your tracks. If you’re at the place in your music mixing where you need many content and samples, you’ll want a service with the most available free samples.

Also, if you enjoy the option of extra sounds or samples, you’ll want to pick a service with an extensive library with lots of samples to choose from.

Free samples are a great benefit that offers a big payoff for the service’s fee. However, they aren’t necessarily a prerequisite for all musicians. If you don’t need a library of free samples, this feature is entirely arbitrary.

Some services that provide libraries don’t have a super extensive archive, so you might want to pass them over for a service with more choice.

Track Storage

free-mastering-software

Some services provide track storage to save and keep mastered tracks in a secure location. Depending on the service you choose, your option to save a track is either included or not.

Some services allow for automatic saving, so you always have a secure copy of your track. Automatic saving prevents accidental deletion or loss.

However, some services require you to save your track in your files immediately. Otherwise, they will be lost forever. If you value more time and extra security to save your songs, a service that provides automatic saves will be better for your tracks.

We always recommend looking for this feature because just one slip-up can lose you hours of work. However, if you know you don’t have a problem remembering to save your work, you might not find this feature is critical.

Sound

Each online mastering service has a different sound. Though they run with algorithms with no biases or preferences, each algorithm is different.

Therefore, each track mastered by the same algorithm will have a similar sound or ambiance. The variance may seem really obvious to a trained ear or might be hardly noticeable if you’re just starting. But it makes a big difference.

If you test out several mastering services, you might find you prefer a different particular sound over another. Sound is also dependent on the choices and features available to adjust your track.

But if you find a service that fully supports the kind of sound you are trying to accomplish, you will likely prefer it over any other service available.

Q&A

What is Mastering Music exactly?

free-online-music-mastering

Mastering is a process for audio post-production. It involves certain tasks such as transferring music from the source to a device specifically designed for data storage, like a magnetic tape or optical disc.

The process can also include other tasks like adjusting the volume, editing out unwanted sounds, adjusting the length of silence between music tracks, and maximizing sound quality.

Mastering is usually done for musical artists’ albums and created by mastering engineers. A “master” record is the final product of an artist’s album.

What is Online Mastering then?

The process of mastering music has changed drastically in the last few decades. Online services allow for mastering to take place in the comfort of your home. They also provide a much quicker and smoother process.

Previous to online mastering, mastering engineers and music producers would need to gather together to make the final product. There were a lot more people involved in the process because there needed to be.

However, with today’s online mastering, the programs allow fewer people and a less tedious process.

Though online mastering is convenient and affordable, many services are not created to replace actual engineers. It’s almost impossible to replicate the talent and expertise an engineer offers.

Because of this difficulty, automatic AI services can sound more unnatural than a mastering engineer. However, online mastering does provide an alternative option that’s usually cheaper and faster than traditional mastering.

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Verdict

Each of these listed music mastering services provides terrific mastering for your tracks. The more famous ones, such as Landr or Cloudbounce, offer excellent mastering for affordable prices and appropriate song storage.

Others, like Bandlab or AI Mastering, offer a completely free experience. Bandlab also boasts many features that aren’t available for other services, including a free DAW for easier music production.

If you’re not overly knowledgeable about mastering, Emastered is one of the most user-friendly services available, with an interface that’s intuitive and easy to use for all ages. Other services provide their preferred features, such as Masteringbox or MajorDecibel.

Masteringbox specializes in loudness control, giving you more adjustment features to find your perfect sound. MajorDecibel commits to the indie scene by providing easy mastering for low-income musicians.

No matter which music mastering service you choose, the online algorithms of each will give you a smoother, more polished sound with lower costs and quicker turnaround.

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