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Learn Music and Audio Production | iZotope Tips and Tutorials

How to Use Master Assistant in Ozone

by Geoff Manchester, iZotope Content Team September 12, 2022

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The new Master Assistant in Ozone gives you the tools to get the sound of chart-topping hits or your favorite reference file using advanced matching technology for tone, dynamics, and width. 

In this tutorial, we’ll show you how to use the updated Master Assistant View to customize a starting point for your master faster than ever. With the new Master Assistant, you have a second set of (AI) ears that never get fatigued. 

Hear Ozone Master Assistant in action: 

Follow along with your copy of Ozone 10, the industry's most advanced mastering suite. 

Already own a previous version of Ozone? Log into your iZotope account for special loyalty pricing.

Getting started with Master Assistant

Add Ozone to your master track. You will see a new button at the top of the plug-in that is shaped like a circle. This is the button for the new Master Assistant tab. 

The new button for the Ozone Master Assistant tab
The new button for the Ozone Master Assistant tab

Once the tab is selected, Ozone waits for audio to be played. Play a portion of the audio where the track is at its loudest (like the chorus). Ozone will then begin its AI-powered analysis and set up your mastering chain. 

When you activate the Assistant, you’ll notice you no longer have to click through a series of questions for the Assistant to generate results. As soon as you press play, the Master Assistant is ready to analyze your audio. 

Once the tab is selected, Ozone waits for audio to be played. Play a portion of the audio where the track is at its loudest (like the chorus). Ozone will then begin its AI-powered analysis and set up your mastering chain. 

When you activate the Assistant, you’ll notice you no longer have to click through a series of questions for the Assistant to generate results. As soon as you press play, the Master Assistant is ready to analyze your audio. 

Ozone Master Assistant analyzing your audio and building a custom master chain
Ozone Master Assistant analyzing your audio and building a custom master chain

You will then be presented with a new Assistant View interface, complete with a library of Targets, Tonal Balance metering, Vectorscope, scrolling Gain Reduction Trace, Destination selection, and powerful high-level controls. 

Ozone Master Assistant View
Ozone Master Assistant View

Targets

On the left hand side you’ll see a new Targets section. After the analysis pass, Ozone will attempt to identify the genre of your song. It will then match your song's Tone, Width, and Dynamics to targets that we've generated from the latest chart topping hits in each genre: Country, EDM, Folk, Hip-hop/Rap, Jazz, Pop, RnB/Soul, Reggae, and Rock. 

An additional option, Cinematic, offers a Target derived from the latest top box office movie scores.  

If you want to select the targets for a different genre, simply select a different genre from the menu and all the processing under the hood will change to match your audio to the new target. 

New Targets section in Ozone Master Assistant matches your audio to target curves of chart-topping hits
New Targets section in Ozone Master Assistant matches your audio to target curves of chart-topping hits

Match from your own reference file

If you’re looking for even more personalization, you can create your own custom target by uploading a reference file. Press the plus icon in the Targets section to upload your reference song, and Master Assistant will match your song to the tonal balance, width, dynamics, and loudness of the analyzed file.

Select the plus button to add your own reference track into Ozone Master Assistant
Select the plus button to add your own reference track into Ozone Master Assistant

Target Meter

Once you have a tonal balance target curve selected for your track, the Target Meter view in the center of the plugin will display the spectral balance of your audio against the target. 

The blue tunnel represents the spectral profile of the reference you selected, while the thinner, white line represents your audio. So at a glance, you can see how your audio compares to the target and you can use the new EQ and Stabilizer sliders to push your audio closer to that target.

Target Meter, EQ, and Stabilizer Controls in Ozone Master Assistant
Target Meter, EQ, and Stabilizer Controls in Ozone Master Assistant

EQ slider

At the top right of the Assistant View you will see an EQ slider. This slider allows you to adjust the amount of EQ processing applied by the Assistant and is directly linked to the global amount in the EQ module.  

Stabilizer slider 

The Stabilizer slider scales the amount of Stabilizer processing applied by the Assistant. This is directly linked to the Stabilizer module in Ozone 10, an adaptive mastering equalizer that reacts to the incoming audio and applies frequency corrections to tonally balance a signal. 

The EQ and the Stabilizer sliders can be adjusted to match the blue target curve according to taste. 

Control your stereo image and improve dynamics

What’s special about the new Master Assistant is that it doesn’t just give you a custom preset—it gives you the ability to tweak the sound easily and quickly, thanks to a few additional controls.  

Width Match 

Width Match measures the ratio of the power of the mid and side signals in four bands, and then uses the Ozone Imager module to match your audio to the selected target. 

Width Match settings in Ozone Master Assistant
Width Match settings in Ozone Master Assistant

Dynamics Match 

Dynamics Match measures the microdynamics in your track and performs a multiband dynamics match to the selected target. This will compress or expand your audio, and maybe apply a combination of both across the different bands!

Control microdynamics of your master with the Impact controls within Dynamics Match
Control microdynamics of your master with the Impact controls within Dynamics Match

You can also control the Ozone Maximizer module in this window to help you easily dial in your loudness, output level, and visualize the gain reduction being applied to your audio. 

Ozone 10 Maximizer controls from the Master Assistant View
Ozone Maximizer controls from the Master Assistant View

Optimize for streaming: 

  • This option is meant for audio that will be converted to a lossy codec and played back with loudness normalization, as is now typical with streaming services. 

  • Master Assistant will measure integrated LUFS during the analysis phase and the middle of this slider will be -10 LUFS. The slider will apply +/- 4 dB of gain via the Maximizer Threshold. 

  • The Maximizer output ceiling will be set to -1 dB, with True Peak limiting turned on. 

Optimize for DJ Player:

  • This option is meant for audio that will be played back as a lossless file that is not loudness normalized, as is typical with club and festival playback via DJ Players. 

  • The range of the Maximizer slider will increase 2 dB louder than when the Streaming destination is selected.

  • The Maximizer ceiling will be set to -0.1 dB, with True Peak limiting turned off. 

Additional Master Assistant Controls

Gain Match and Bypass Controls

When Gain Match is enabled, the effective gain of the signal will be compensated when bypassing individual modules or bypassing Ozone globally. This enables you to hear the change that the Master Assistant has made without "louder is better" bias.

Gain Match button in Ozone Master Assistant
Gain Match button in Ozone Master Assistant

Relearn your audio

Would you like to analyze a different section of your track? Select Relearn to do another AI-powered listening pass of your audio selection. 

Select Relearn to do another listening pass of your audio with Master Assistant
Select Relearn to do another listening pass of your audio with Master Assistant

Start mastering your tracks with Master Assistant

Now that you understand all of the tools at your disposal, you’re ready to start mastering your tracks with the intuitive Master Assistant in Ozone 10 powered by machine learning. 

Already own a previous version of Ozone? Log into your iZotope account for special loyalty pricing.

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