Concerning Production, Recording, Mixing, and Mastering CreditsOn your CD/Tape infold, there are 4 common types of credits. There are production, recording, mixing and mastering. There are also 2nd Engineer, Assistant Engineer, Intern, etc. You will be given an information sheet with your final CD copy of what applicable credits should be included on your CD/Tape infold. If you have misplaced that information, please contact us for the information. 813.318.1679
These are the questions we get asked most frequently. We hope that this will help answer most of the inquries that you have. If you have additional questions please feel free to call or Email Us any time, and we will be happy to discuss it with you in further detail.
QUESTIONHow do I book studio time? Click here for all booking details:
QUESTIONDo you record live in the studio? No, unless it is jazz emsemble (no audience).
QUESTIONHow long does it take to record and how much will it cost?
There are 3 stages in making a CD; they are recording, mixing and mastering. Each step is necessary, and everything done in the studio is at an hourly rate. Recording and mixing take the most time, mastering is relatively quick in comparison. The more material on your album, the more time it will take overall.
An independent professional album costs between $8,000 - $12,000 roughly. If you have specific questions email us, and we'll get back with you asap. Sorry, we do not make low or mid quality demos, in our opinion you might as well record yourself at home if you are trying to save money. If you want something profession call us.
We now offer Packages for Bands and Vocalists, Rates are on the "rates" page.
QUESTIONWhat's the difference between an engineer and a producer?
The Engineer: When you hire us, your hourly rate includes the engineer. The engineer is the one who knows all the technical detail about the gear and the person who operates all the equipment. The engineer does everything: recording, mixing and mastering of your songs. The engineer is like a photographer - he's taking a "sonic snapshot" of your sound. The engineer will ask you how you want things to sound. If you did not hire a producer, that means that "you" are the producer. The engineer will not "produce" your CD, it's not his job.
The engineer will hand you your finished CD when you are done. You would never be expected to do the engineer's job. You only need to focus on performing your music to the best of your abbility.
The Producer: In conjunction with the engineer, the producer will instruct the band and engineer on how to make things sound (it's also common for the engineer to be hired as the producer). Some things producers do to change sounds is pick different instruments for the musicians, different amps to use, maybe different microphones, tells the vocalist what sounds best between different deliveries of the same line. The list of creative improvements and changes are endless. Because the band is so subjectively close to their music, the band often times will never change anything because in their eyes it's as good as it can be. But with a good producer and a fresh perspective, the music can often be changed to be better be it very small changes to drastic changes. Even a lot of small tiny changes can make a huge overall difference.
A producer is like a painter, instead of taking the exact "sonic photograph" of the band the way the engineer does, the producer visualizes a theme and idea for your album. The producer also rearranges songs, takes out or adds parts to the music. The Producer "paints" the "sonic portrait" of the band through their objective viewpoint. Producing is a completely different job than engineering. It requires a lot of close work and communication with the band before and during the recording process. Most production decisions are made before recording, although inspired changes or additions do come up in the studio. Production is not included with a studio's hourly rate. Our in-house producer is Nathan Eldred, the owner and chief engineer of Atlas Recording Studios. You can hire him to producer your album. See next question for more info.
QUESTIONWe want to hire a producer for our next album?
Choosing a third-party producer (someone not "in" your band or "friend of" your band) is often times the best decision a band can make. Almost all bands have some concepts of what they want to achieve with an album. The band will convey all their goals to the producer. A good producer adds energy into refining the efforts of the band and their music into realizing their goals. Producer/Engineer Nathan Eldred is available for freelance or in-house production. Nathan specializes in a wide variety of styles like alt rock, emo, indie rock, punk, hardcore, metal, etc. and has over 15 years experience as an engineer, producer, and musician. Producer or Co-Producer fees are negotiable per project. (We do not produce or record R&B or Hip-Hop.)
QUESTIONWhat is ProTools?
ProTools is a DAW. We use several different DAWs. DAW stands for Digital Audio Workstation, basically a computer system loaded up with programs for processing audio. We predominantly use a DAW for automation and mastering. Our philosophy is to try to avoid plug-ins whenever possible, we like to use outboard gear for processing when we can. In the "real world", combining 24 tracks into a stereo mix is best done by using a high quality analog console. Alternatively, when using plug-ins and "mixing in the box" we feel that it reduces the stereo image and depth of the recording. Mixes are no longer able to be "reached into" they become more two dimensional. In our opinion, the more analog the recording remains, the more 3D it sounds. Listen to any high quality rock and roll recording from the 70's, 80's, early 90's, compare it to some new recordings, the trend to go exclusively to "Computer Systems" for recording has been yeilding modern recordings that sound thin in comparison to traditional analog recording methods. This is not an analog vs. digital debate, a computer is just not able to sum tracks properly, it is a phenomena that is characteristic of the method.
The programs we use for these applications are Nuendo, Samplitude, and ProTools.
QUESTIONWhat is quality gear? I've read that you use the highest quality equipment, but I don't know much about it.
Quality gear in the recording industry is the gear that is characterized by being the best of the best, the gear that is used to make the best gold and platinum albums. Just like musical instruments, there is bad quality and excellent quality, and everything in between. You wouldn't expect the Rolling Stones to use a $170 guitar, a $150 bass guitar, and a $300 drum kit when recording, of course we are speaking in 2006 dollars. The same with recording, the studio must have the appropriate caliber equipment to do the job. We believe this to be is a fundamental part of an effective recording philosophy. This key belief is often what separates Atlas Recording & Mastering from other studios, making us a more effective studio in regards to realizing a clients ultimate recording goals. We ascribe to a higher standard that most studios do not. We provide the most exceptional gear and then some(the stuff your favorite artists use in their productions).
What does low-quality gear do? For example, if the sound source (i.e. guitar, bass, drums, vocals, samplers, etc.) is going into the recorder through microphones, micpres, compressors and eqs that are low-quality, it will ad distortion, noise, harshness, too many "highs", too many "lows", "drop-outs", and will not capture the true fidelity of the original performance, this would constitute a bad recording. The end result of such a low-quality signal path will undoubtedly yeild a low-quality copy of the original performance, which translates to 1) unhappy client, 2) wasted investment, 3) ineffective product in hand.
There are many studios, there are even more engineers, that in no way means that they are all experts in the field and vice versa; a studio can have exellent gear with terrible engineers. (Ever been to a bad dentist?). This also translates to 1) unhappy client, 2) wasted investment, 3) ineffective product in hand. If your product is ineffective, you can loose out on record deals, publishing contracts, getting gigs, etc.
Everyone wants a recording that they can be proud of, a recording that they can say "This is so good it could be on the radio!" (or better than whats on the radio!). That's where we come in, that is our job. We will get you national quality, as good or better than a major label project.
QUESTIONDo you have background music [for karaoke, accompanyment, royalty-free uses]? No, you would have to go to a place that speciailizes in accompanyment/karaoke CDs, there would be no way that would could provide a 20,000+ song catalog "in house" at our studio. That is best left to a Karaoke shop. There are too many varieties of music, even if we had a CD for every song that has been in the top 100 charts (remember there are charts for rock, gospel, country, hip-hop, r&b, etc) over the last 35 years we'd have to have over 5000 CDs. For example, most Christian Book Stores carry a selection of accompanyment CDs ranging in price from $5-10 per song. You can probably pick up the background music you are looking for at reasonable prices, and if possible it's better to spend a little more on better produced background CD.
How does it work? You would bring the CD into the studio, it is loaded into the DAW, and your lead vocals are recorded, then they are mixed in with the song. Generally it takes about 1 hour per song from start to finish an accompanyment/karaoke project. If you want to do 3 songs, a good estimate of the time needed would be 3 hours of studio time.
Concerning Royalty-Free music, this is a special catagory of music, that is pre-recorded and licensed to you to use in your work at no charge other than the cost of the CD. Most commonly it is used as background music for a commercial work that is being sold, like a relaxation CD, or motivational CD, etc. Royalty Free music is a good choice for you if you are doing a spoken word piece and need background music. We do not carry these CDs, you would have to find a place that specializes in "Royalty-Free" (keyword to look up in search engine) works.
QUESTIONWhat type of music does the studio specialize in?
We record rock, alternative, metal, punk, bluegrass, folk, country, etc. Anything guitar based. As well as jazz and classical.
Please note: we do not do any rap or hip-hop recording. We do not make beats.
QUESTIONWhen was the studio started? Studio Owner Nathan Eldred had started Atlas Recording Studios in 1994.
QUESTIONWhat else does Atlas do? Studio Owner Nathan Eldred had started Atlas Recording Studios in 1994, he started Atlas Pro Audio in 2000. Atlas Pro Audio caters to all levels of studios and engineers, including gold and platinum engineers, bands and artists, huge corporations, small businesses, venues, home studios and beginner engineers. Nathan Eldred provides consultation and advice on studio gear, room tuning, studio construction, recording techniques, etc. He is internationally known for his knowledge and expertise in the field, and is widely known in the pro audio industry by manufacturers and end users alike. Locally, he travels throughout Florida to record commercial voice over work, as well as doing custom installations, consultation, and room tuning for surrounding studios and voice over rooms.
Atlas Pro Audio currently sells over 80 lines of high-end audio gear, and is also the US distributor for Buzz Audio (New Zealand) and World Distributor for Old School Audio (OSA).
QUESTIONAre you accepting interns? We are not currently accepting interns.
QUESTIONDo you do tours? No, we no longer can accomodate tour requests. Please note that there are pictures, client list, studio history, studio samples in the form of mp3s, gear list, studio rates, there is a lot of information located here. By looking over the website we have provided all the information needed to answer your questions. A studio tour would not be more comprehensive than the accumulated information you can access online through this website. If you have a question that you can not find the answer to, please email us and we will get back with you asap.
Due to the volume of requests for free studio tours, we are unable to accomodate requests. We are overbooked for most of the year, making it hard to schedule in even an hour of tour time in a week. Frequently those requesting tours are just curious or not-serious, or wishing to seek employment or an internship from us, looking for information on recording, and in the past we have been had unscrupulous studio competitors gain access to our studio through tours under the guise of being a potential client.
QUESTIONAre you hiring? We are currently not hiring.
QUESTIONI'm an engineer who needs to take my clients to another studio to do some tracking and/or mixing. I would like to record my client's drums (most common) at Atlas and (mix) at Atlas. Would I be able to get a special rate? Yes, we give freelance engineers and producers discounted rates for bringing in your clientele and your business to us. Call us to see what we offer and to make booking arrangements, 813.318.1679
QUESTIONDo you offer Block Rates?
Yes, if buying 30 hours or more, please call for block rates.
QUESTIONDo you accept credit cards?
Yes; Visa, Mastercard, Discover and AMEX. Of course, we also accept cash and money orders.
QUESTIONWhere can I hear Atlas's MP3's?
Check our "mp3" page on our drop-down menu, on the page you will find links to mp3's.
QUESTIONIs Atlas is the right studio for us?
You can trust us with your music because:
• Atlas Recording has served the Tampa Bay/Central Florida Area (and beyond) for 15 years.
• Our chief engineer, Nathan Eldred, has over 18 years of recording experience, and over 8 years of mastering experience.
• Our gear is some of the finest in the world and the best in the area.
• We have multiple facilities availble, depending on your needs and budget.
• We have hundreds of happy clients.
• Honest and professional service.
• We pay extreme attention to the detail and quality of our work.
• We can offer quality comparable to studio that charge double or triple our rates.
• Our clients can choose to produce themselves and get what they want, not what someone else wants.
QUESTIONWhat should we bring to the studio when we record?