Master_Me Is A FREE Mastering Plugin For Podcasts And Music


Klaus Scheuermann released master_me, a freeware mastering plugin for Windows and macOS.

Mastering can be a daunting process for the average hobbyist.

We want our tracks to sound great, but there is so much conflicting information out there regarding best practices, as well as the differences between mixing and mastering. Engineering school is an option, but if you’re recording a podcast with your pals, it might not be feasible.

Now, master_me isn’t going to be a panacea that suddenly teaches you the intricacies and best practices of mastering. What it does provide is a set of tools akin to Izotope’s Ozone, meant to get your audio sounding polished with minimal experience.

The signal flow of master_me is typical of other mastering processors. There are means of handling dynamics, equalization, and finally, limiting.

Pre-processing is the first module in line and gives control over the gain and stereo width. Gain is simply dictated by how hot the input is going toward the other processors. The stereo width control is less refined and offers a mono switch and stereo correction. This is followed by a simple noise gate with controls for attack, release, and threshold.

A simple EQ offers up some basic parameters for fine-tuning your audio. You ideally aren’t making big EQ moves in the mastering stage, but you have the option of adjusting frequencies on the side if necessary. Leveler is an interesting parameter and maintains a target loudness.

The compression offered is a simple knee module and a mid/side multiband compressor. These function well but not quite as well as individual plugins. The limiter and brickwall modules round out the signal chain, and there, thankfully, is peak protection, so signals over 0dB true peak aren’t going to be present.

master_me is an interesting collection of mastering processors that comes in an easy and advanced mode. While this isn’t going to put your educated mastering engineers out of work, it does provide a cost-effective alternative to Ozone and other all-in-one mastering suites.

master_me is available for Mac, Windows, and Linux. Natively supported formats are LV2, VST2, VST3, and CLAP. Additional standalone applications in JACK are available on some systems. Included literature doesn’t indicate if Master_Me has a native Apple Silicon binary.

Download: master_me 


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About Author

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Liam is a producer, mixing engineer, and compressor aficionado. When not mixing, he can be found pretending to play guitar, as he has been doing for the last 20 years.


  1. That seems rather very interesting. I have a paid Ozone Elements and it does a decent job but not quite all that’s needed for all the master needs. I’m still on my mix journey though, so I wouldn’t have a decent opinion on it.

  2. I still haven’t even started learning how to utilize my Ozone Elements (free from BPB). Is this a good enough alternative to go straight to learning this instead of Ozone Elements (or other alternatives covered by BPB)?

    • Tomislav Zlatic


      I think Ozone Elements is pretty much standard at this point, but it would be interesting to compare it directly to freeware alternatives like master_me. Definitely a topic for a future article on BPB!

      • Ideally, mastering should only include Inserting ISRC codes and CD text, arranging tracks in their final sequential order, specifying the gaps between tracks, fade ins and outs and dither. Equalization (if needed) should be used for correcting minor flaws and/or optimizing translation to all playback systems. Same goes for any compression and limiting. That said, it makes absolutely no sense to “master” your songs in the same environment where you mixed them and on the same speakers. Stereo buss processing is something completely different and when applied in a right way it helps delivering the mixes that are finished songs and don’t require mastering.

        Now, about mastering plugins. There’s nothing they can do that can’t be done better with a chain of purpose built plugins. AFAIC, I’ve never liked the plastic sound Ozone limiter has to it. OTOH, it has nice features, it’s very tweakable and simple to use, so I can imagine some people really like it. TB Barricade v3, Loud Max, Sonic Anomaly Unlimited, VladG Limiter 6 (TDR Limiter 6 is one of my most used limiters and is often on sale for as little as $10) and D16 Group Frontier are all free and great. I do have Ozone elements and I’ve never used it. I bought it for $10 because I wanted the free plugin that came with it. The eq is nice, but nothing to write home about. The best module is the stereo widener that’s thankfully available as a single free plugin. I don’t have anything against iZotope plugins, BTW. Stutter Edit 2 and Trash 2 (discontinued, for some reason) are great and I use them all the time.

        Anyways, back to the topic. Instead of learning how to use a specific mastering plugin it’s much better to learn how to apply compression, equalization, saturation, clipping and limiting on the 2 buss and during mixing and not after the fact. Just my .02

        • Tomislav Zlatic


          We have a mastering tutorial coming very soon. I agree that learning the basics of mastering and doing it yourself will lead to better results than any automatic plugin/service. Hiring a mastering engineer is always the best option, though.

          • If one can afford a good one, of course :) Still, even hiring a great ME doesn’t defeat the purpose of 2 buss processing – the mix should always sound as close as possible to the finished song.

      • Oooh, a comparison of all-in-one mastering plugins, would be nice!
        A bit like what Alex said, i currently master (at a super noob/beginner level) using separate plugins, compressors, Loudmax, TDR Nova, etc. But was looking to learn if any “all-in-one” plugins could help quicken/simplify the workflow.

  3. Failed to load JACK DLL, reason:
    libjack64.dll: error code 126: Impossibile trovare il modulo specificato.

    Failed to create the JACK client, reason was:
    Communication error with the JACK server.


  4. “Failed to create the JACK client, reason was:
    Communication error with the JACK server.” 🤷‍♂️

  5. Brian Bermingham


    Hi All.
    and thanks you Tomislav for all that you do here.

    can someone help and let me know is this a stand alone program or does it work with Logic ?
    i installed the master me plugin but not appearing in logic ?
    any help would be much appreciated.


  6. Klaus Scheuermann


    Hey William!

    Thanks for checking out master_me :)

    I just wanted to clarify, that although certain modules might be a useful tool in your (music-) mastering process (at least they are for me), master_me is NOT meant to automatically master your music – which hopefully deserves a little more attention ;)

    I created master_me as an automatic mastering processor for LIVE situations, where you only have one shot, zero latency is mandatory and being easy on the CPU is critical. Therefore certain compromises had to be made, for instance: no look-ahead an no linear phase EQ.

    Therefore, it is NOT meant as a competitor to other all-in-one mastering plugins, but – again – you might like how certain modules sound. I for myself have used the multiband-ms-compressor on 15+ album masterings myself since the first release ;)

    Klaus Scheuermann

    PS: master_me is not only free to use, but FOSS (free and open source software) <3

  7. Klaus Scheuermann


    Regarding installation and compatibility (from the updated readme):

    here are the latest installers:

    Supported OS: Linux, macOS, Windows.

    Plugin Formats: CLAP, VST, VST3, LV2.

    Standalone: Jack.

    AU and AAX are not supported (yet). master_me can be used in LOGIC and PROTOOLS via a VST-AU or VST-AAX wrapper (like Blue Cat’s Patchwork).

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