How to prepare data for vinyl pressing

I thought I've uploaded the tracks when I launched the project. Why do it again?

There is a difference between the audio that we need for your digital release and analogue release.

To get your sound right on the vinyl, we need an audio track made for the vinyl.

We can still press your audio made for the digital release, but we cannot promise you a professional outcome in that case.

We recommend you get your audio properly mastered for vinyl.

For details on mastering, please refer to this article

Why do I need a vinyl mastering?

To get the sound right on the vinyl, there actually is a lot of manipulation needed.

The reason is because for CDs, you can have a huge amount of treble or bass without them distorting, but for vinyl extreme frequencies cause a distortion which will lead to jumping needles and other problems.

There is a lot more about this issue that could be talked about, but for now we just want you to understand that by mastering your audio for vinyl, your music will sound nicer when pressed. Basically, it's the same reason why you have mastering provided for your digital releases. It's best to have your music in the best condition regardless of its format.

QRATES have tied a partnership with Color Sound Mastering Studio in Paris to ensure the sound quality on your vinyl. For more details please read the below article.

What are the audio requirements?

We accept high-resolution WAV or AIFF files – the most optimal resolution and format for us is if you provide one continuous WAV file per side at 96 kHz / 24-bit (we support audio from 44.1kHz / 16-bit up to 192 kHz / 32-bit).

You can send us audio files peaking near 0 dBFS, but not too close to 0 dBFS. Leave some small headroom there, maybe 0.1-0.5dB.

We need enough additional headroom for D/A conversion in our vinyl mastering software sending audio signals to our cutting lathes through PrismSound Orfeus converters.

Please note it is better not to use hard-limiters (brickwall, peak limiters) to a great extent. We have to reduce the cutting levels if there are a lot of limited sections in the supplied audio.

How can I send you the audio files after my project has succeeded?

Please send it in a single zip via the uploader that we provide on your project page.
Make sure you name the audio files so that they cleary indicate on which side and track number the audio goes to.
e.g. A1 Example.wav, B2 Sample.wav

With in your audio zip please also include your track lists to confirm the music that you will be pressing.
If you are not sure about this, you can download the track list template here.

How should I prepare my artwork files?

Please download the templates from here. Place your design on the template and delete the template lines when you submit them.
Necessary conditions for printing and for printed materials:

1. All documents provided must have a minimum 300DPI resoltuion pixel / inch.

2. Maximum ink coverage = 320% (Deep Black: C70% -% M70 - J70% - N100%).

3. Always add 3mm minimum of bleed around documents.

4. Delete all template lines.

5. Files to be transferred to PDF format

6. Provide CMYK color mode files.

7. Be sure to outline and vectorize fonts (Rasterized)

IMPORTANT: always follow the technical specifications required for print in order to avoid any mistake and get your record pressed as soon as possible.


I thought I've uploaded my artwork when I created the project. Why do it again?

We need your art work in a pdf matched with the 1:1 template in order to print your design.

How can I send my artwork files for print?

Please send them in a single zip file using the uploader we provide at your project page.

Make sure the file name cleary indicates what each pdf will be for.

e.g. Label_Aside.pdf, Sleeve.pdf


Can I check if my submitted artwork is OK to print?

Yes, we will send you the preview file (DPA) for your confirmation.

Once you accept this file, pressing will begin.

The preview file will have the template line with it, but it will not be printed on your sleeve and label.


Was this article helpful?
0 out of 0 found this helpful
Have more questions? Submit a request
Powered by Zendesk