Question : Answer – plugins

02022-10-31 | Question:Answer, Recording, Studio | 2 comments

Ian had a followup question:
I have one more music production question – what plug-ins (if anything) do you use on your master fader in Pro Tools?

I don’t have any plugins on the master track, but the preceding mix has the following three plugins inserted. I normalize the stereo mix to -1.5db to allow enough headroom and then use the Massenburg EQ plugin, and two plugins from Sony Oxford, Sonnox, the Inflator and the Limiter. That’s also the order in which the plugins are inserted: EQ, Inflator, Limiter.

I have used the MDW EQ for a long long time, perhaps for 15 years. It is my guitar EQ as well as my mastering EQ. I think they didn’t make the plugin for a while and I was bummed to have to do without it after upgrading my equipment last year. But then they came out with a new version of the plugin and I was able to move the presets, which I had created over the years, from the old G4 Macintosh to the new MacBook Pro without a problem. And they worked!! That was a relief.

Jon turned me onto the Inflator and Limiter and they have been part of my mastering for at least five years.


  1. Eric Nolan

    I love hearing about your process and gear. I’ve been doing a lot of mixing of my own electronic music lately and having an absolute blast finding creative ways to get different instruments to fit in different places depending on the song.

    When you mix, do you pretty much leave the EQ and other guitar effects the same once you find your sound or do you find yourself starting with a clean slate every song and exploring from there?

    At some point in the near future I’d like to bring in my nylon guitar into the mix and I really appreciate the knowledge you pass down!

  2. Ian Findlay

    Thanks for sharing, I’ll try your method on my next recording


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