Cubase for mastering

Hello folks,

I would like to know which Cubase features are specific or useful for mastering.
There is hardly anything on the user manual regarding this subject. So far, I’ve found:

  1. Track Presets which names begin with “AM”
  2. Project template from the “mastering” category (which doesn’t contain much interesting really)
  3. Dithering Plugin UV22HR
  4. Midside processing with Frequency EQ
  5. Multiband plugins: compressor, envelope shaper, expander, etc
  6. Distortion/Saturation plugins for the Stereo Out Channel
  7. Plugin: Stereo enhancer
  8. Metering with different types of scales with the mixer’s meter, and use of multiscope for stereo width measurement
  9. Use of routing to create parallel channels

What other resources have you found for mastering within Cubase?


Steinberg wants you to use Wavelab for mastering is my impression so I guess it is not a huge priorty from them. anyways, I only use the information from the master meter in my mastering, otherwise I use external plugins for my mastering chain

I would not know. Every song/album project should be approached based on what the desired sonic objectives, and that is different for every project. This is why you won’t find many commercial ME’s, either OTB, ITB or combined that have “pre-configured mastering chains.” This also applies to an extent…presets for processing tools. Every song, every project is different. Listen, then decide what is necessary.

I have never looked at Cubase templates. I master in Wavelab. However any DAW can be used in mastering. It really depends on your goals. Are you using a DAW to do what? Send? Capture? Process? Link to hardware?

Wavelab is more of a specific mastering environment. Cubase is more of a total production environment. Even with Wavelab, you have the mastering environment, but most Wavelab users obtain additional tools, both hardware and VST, based on their sonic objectives. Wavelab is just the framework for mastering.

This can be used whenever bouncing down. Therefore it’s not limited to production or mastering.

Again, both mastering and production. However in mastering I would guess more slight EQ. If necessary this should be addressed before sending to commercial mastering.

Personally the only use I have for a multiband compressor is muting, listening, and processing a single band. Shortly after multi’s got popular I used them but also discovered issues I didn’t like because lack of critical listening and not listening critically in an Mastering room.

On the Stereo Out channel? That should all be addressed in the production stage unless maybe a emulation of a Studer A800 etc.

Again, at the production stage for whatever tracks you feel need it. I’m not a fan of most enhancers unless used very subtle. M/S EQ for myself works wonders.

I love meters for signal generators then proper gain staging and watching dbRMS stuff, but ultimately I rely on what I hear. I don’t mix to the meters.


Signal generators? Surround?

I would asses where you are at and where you want to go. Cubase sort of implies the “one box does it all” marketing concept, but if you are serious, then buy Wavelab. But as said above, even with Wavelab, you will need specific mastering tools that are based on your workflow and objectives. Some use Waves, Izotope, and lots of boutique plugs. Many use hardware with Wavelab. Some ME’s only use Wavelab for specific purposes such as capture, batch processing, watching pretty meters and beautiful 3d frequency analysis, error checks etc. It gets expensive. :slight_smile:

Hope that helps.

Thank you!
Yes, I have Wavelab and I definitely prefer it to Cubase. It’s a no-brainer.

However, I’m teaching a Cubase course and so I would like to give my students all the possible resources within Cubase to work on a project from head to toe. I know mastering with Cubase is a bit of a stretch, but my course is aimed at advanced level Sound Engineering students, so I think it’s worthwhile to show them how they can take maximum advantage of Cubase.