The Recording Academy Producers & Engineers Wing announced during CE Week in New York City, that it has embarked upon the creation of a series of Hi-Res Production Guidelines.
The goal is in further clarifying the technology and techniques essential to producing great high-resolution music.
In June 2014, a coalition that included the Consumer Electronics Association, Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group, DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group and The Recording Academy agreed upon a common definition for Hi-Res Music.
However, some misperceptions still remain when it comes to the correct methods for recording, mixing and mastering these titles resulting in the creation of Production Guidelines.
Topics to be addressed in these guidelines include:
—The importance of providing masters that have either been digitally recorded or re-mastered from analog sources at the highest resolution possible.
—The value of establishing workflow protocols and procedures for recording new projects at 96K/24 bit and higher.
—The need for utilizing best practices when transferring analog masters to hi-res digital formats.
—The importance of packaging Hi-Res files with high quality digital liner notes, credits, and other descriptive metadata that complements these recordings.
—The use of best efforts when documenting the origin format (“provenance”) of these recordings, in order to provide as much transparency to consumers as possible.
—A list of recommendations that support the minimum production requirements necessary to enable music labels to deliver hi-res content.
“Hi-Res Music is becoming more popular every day, and demand for these digital files is increasing rapidly,” said Maureen Droney, Producers & Engineers Wing managing director. “Our members want to ensure that there is enough music product in the pipeline to satisfy this demand. These professionals, who represent some of the best ears in the business, have volunteered their time, energy and expertise in order to demystify and simplify the overall process of creating Hi-Res Music. The guidelines they will create will go a long way towards realizing this.”
Even discerning music creators and listeners have acknowledged that thanks to advancements in technology, digital audio sound quality today can rival or even surpass the finest analog recordings. As a result, the market for high-quality music is growing exponentially, with an increasing number of online retail outlets now offering Hi-Res Music titles, in genres ranging from classical and jazz to pop, country and rock.