Vinyl Records: Master Preparation Guideline


  1. Master can be submitted as a production-ready copy on CDR or DVDR. While submitting a physical master, please label it clearly “MASTER” on the disc surface, accompanied by artist name and release title.
  2. Master can be submitted as a production-ready copy as a zipped package containing WAV files – each track clearly numbered and titled. Such a package must be delivered with md5 checksum.
  3. A customer is strongly advised to keep a backup copy of the master.
  4. Master submitted to 8Merch must be prepared as a final release.


  1. It is recommended not to exceed the maximum playing time stated in the table below. Exceeding these playing times may cause decrease in recording level and dynamics.
  2. Try to avoid using psycho acoustic processors to an excessive degree.
  3. If possible, please check the master by using a correlation measurer (it must not be drastically in the red field or have negative values) and a frequency spectrum analyzer to ensure the signal does not contain unreasonably large elements in the low frequency range (around 20 Hz) and also the top end of the frequency zone (around 20 kHz).
  4. The lowest frequencies of the acoustic zone that are below 300 Hz have to be in phase.
  5. Filter away all inaudible signals to avoid possible problems during recording and reproduction, e.g. subacoustic signals below 20 Hz (better below 40 Hz) and high frequencies above 16 kHz.
  6. If your recording substantially differs from natural sounds, which is caused by spreading out the energy in the acoustic zone, there is a risk of audible changes to the sound during the transcription. This is due to the limitations of mechanical recording processes and can for example be caused by singing adjusted by processors or electronically generated effects. In the worst scenario where the signal/music has such critical characteristics that it may damage the cutting head, the order will unfortunately be refused.
  7. As standard we choose the highest reasonably possible level in accordance with the character of the existing recording and with respect to the specific properties of the mechanical recording. If it is tolerated by the limit values of the recorder and by the playing time of recording, then it is possible – at Customer’s express request (mostly DJ or rock and heavy-metal bands) – to use a higher level – LOUD, however on the side of reproduction it can be to the prejudice of distortion or stability of the tip.
  8. Try to avoid 7” vinyl formats at 33 1/3 rpm as the possibilities of the recording and reproduction are most limited at this format. If there is no other solution you have to take into account that the final product will be in some way compromised).
  9. Remember that good reproduction results on the user’s side depend on the quality, technical conditions and correct adjustment of the reproduction facilities.
  10. We need a complete track list with your master containing the names of all tracks (including the hidden and bonus tracks), track timings and their separation into side A and side B, the total time of each side.
  11. Please inform us of any special effects or anomalies etc.
  12. Please check carefully if the data on the track list (number of tracks, track order, names and timings on each side) corresponds with the master, the label and cover artwork (and other printed parts – inserts, posters).
  13. Please keep in mind that the data needs to be readable and understandable.


  1. Colour specification: CMYK. Additional Pantone colours can be applied.
  2. Resolution: min. 300dpi
  3. Accepted file format: PDF. Other files format like EPS, TIFF, JPG are accepted only after prior approval from 8Merch team
  4. It is advised to convert all fonts to outlines. Minimum size: 5,5 pt (positive) and 6 pt (negative)
    Use this template to prepare 7” label artwork.
    Use this template to prepare 10” label artwork.
    Use this template to prepare 12” label artwork.