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Links to external websites are provided for informational and research purposes only. Unless otherwise specified, Master’s Image neither endorses nor recommends any product or service or information found by using these links. Since we have no control over how these websites may change with time, keep your guard up as you consider their content for yourself, and please use the contact form to advise us if a link no longer works, or takes you to a questionable material.

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By Master's Image, Jul 17 2014 01:30PM

A mechanical license gives you the right to record and distribute a published song owned by someone else, such as a cover song. Without a Mechanical License, you are in violation of U.S. Copyright Law to proceed with replication. In fact, Master’s Image cannot release the finished CD unless a client delivers a written Mechanical License for each copyrighted song first. Note that songs that are truly in the public domain do not require license, but be very sure the song really is in the public domain: don’t make assumptions at this point, don’t take short cuts on your research. It is a shame when a gifted artist gets entangled in a copyright lawsuit just as he begins to turn the corner and become noticed and successful.


Mechanical licenses can be secured directly with publishers or individuals, but the licenses are much faster and easier to obtain if the song is listed with the Harry Fox Agency — a clearinghouse setup by the publishing industry for speeding user access to mechanical licenses. You do not need a mechanical license for songs that are fully of your own writing.

By Master's Image, Jul 17 2014 01:29PM

DDP stands for “Disc Description Protocol.” A DDP File Set is a set of computer files that fully describes all the content of a CD. A DDP File Set can be made of any CD, but it is usually used to delver a finished, mastered CD project to a CD manufacturer for replication.


For a DDP File Set, the master audio that would go CD is encoded into a set of computer files, that fully describe the disc’s audio and extra content. This has the advantage of delivering your CD in a form in which error correction is a standard feature. Audio CDs have no error correction schemes built in to the storage algorithm, whereas data CDs have a good error section and correction protocol. Basically, DDP assures you the delivery of an error free master to the replication house, whereas even the best audio CD-R master will always have uncorrected errors. As long as the error rate isn’t too high, it shouldn’t be a problem. But why take the chance?


This paragraph gets a bit technical. It used to be that such a set of files was usually delivered by digital tape, but now the set can be burned to a data CD-R and mailed to a replication house. Or in many cases the files can even be uploaded over the internet, speeding the project submission process greatly.


The important bottom line to carry away from this is that the DDP File Set is vastly more reliable than an audio master CD. Furthermore, in our opinion, if a replication house does not support DDP submissions by internet or mail, that choice should be rejected in favor of a replication house that does.



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