Bob Macciochi is a mastering engineer at, music-lover, and would-be philosopher.


24 vs 16 bit for the bedroom producer 

Ok so I’ve written this about 50 times over the years, just wrote it again and thought I’d paste it here. If I’ve directed you here by email, apologies for my laziness…  Question: “my track peaks at -11dB, do I have to turn everything up to make it over -6dBFS? I don’t want to mess […]

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Headroom. Again. But simpler.

[So, errr, that ‘6dB on pain of death’ waffle was a bit opaque. Someone actually told me they had no idea WTF I was talking about. Sorry about that. Fortunately, this question comes up a lot. And it came up again today. Hopefully this explanation is a bit more straightforward… Cheers all!]   Can I ask […]


6dB headroom on pain of death, and other ramblings

​Instagram debate: why do people believe mastering engineers will only accept mixes that peak at -6 on your daw meters? Where did this come from and provided it’s not clippped what’s stopping the mastering engineer gaining it down if needed? Looooooooool It’s because people take a general recommendation (‘leave some headroom, about 6dB will do’) […]

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Another thought for the day

Mixing into heavy buss processing that you then turn off, is like being really, really drunk. Under those particular conditions, all the decisions you take make perfect sense. Then you wake up sober, and think ‘why the bloody hell did I do that?’.

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Thought for the day

Mixing into heavy buss processing that you then turn off, is like riding a bike with stabilisers.

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Kii Three speaker review

The Kii Three is a new speaker on the market, the brainchild of Bruno Putzeys and friends. There are some reviews floating about, but with the Three being such a new product they’re a bit thin on the ground, and mostly first impression ‘reviews’ conducted in hotel rooms and conference halls. I thought I’d add my take on these speakers, […]


Why I’d rather add than cut bass in mastering 

Right from the word go, I’d like to stress one thing very heavily; I’d rather receive stuff that sounds right, and doesn’t need me to do anything. I’d rather there wasn’t any doubt about how the artist wanted it to sound. If I don’t have to do anything then that’s a bonus – at least […]

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Sidechaining: In brief

Sidechaining: I could write a book here, and I’ve got a HUGE sidechaining article that needs a lot of tidying up. I’ve spent years thinking about it, how best to explain it, and I’ve got a few ways of thinking of and explaining it. But I’ll boil it down. There are two things I can […]

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The Mind Boggles

I write this having just seen somebody advise somebody else (on Facebook, of course) to have all their channels peaking at -18dBFS. Come to think of it, I’m just going to leave it there.


Yet more on sidechaining

[Snipped from an email response to someone from whom I requested a revised mix with less compression] Ok so, it isn’t always easy to say what’s causing what from this end. Trying to do detective work like CSI or something, figuring out what happened after the fact. But really it’s pretty simple. The track […] sounds like […]

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