Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- 1. I'm using my own designer. How do I make sure that he or she does things the way Oasis needs them?
We offer full-sized downloadable electronic templates at www.oasisCD.com/templates. They are available in various formats for both Macintosh and Windows platforms. Our Client Advisors are also skilled at answering most graphics questions.
All Oasis graphics templates have recently been revised – be sure you are using a current version! You can ensure this by visiting www.oasisCD.com/templates right before preparing your project.
- 2. I need a special warning label or symbol on my CD. What do I do?
Oasis can provide you with a special “Parental Advisory” logo and the © symbol, etc. They're available for download as a part of the “Oasis CD font” at www.oasiscd.com/templates or we can print them for you as stickers. If you have any questions please contact your client advisor.
- 3. What should we do about a bar code?
As an Oasis client you can purchase a unique and genuine UPC bar code for just $20. The code is yours and yours alone, permanently. This is important for retail sales, and for most Web sales as well.
Alternatively, you can join the Uniform Code Council at www.uc-council.org. The cost for this is $750, but you can generate numerous bar codes for your own use.
- 4. Do you really GUARANTEE your turn times?
Yes! This is a complete break with the rest of the industry's “turn times in big print, disclaimers in small print” tradition. At Oasis, turn times on qualifying products are guaranteed. These are indicated in this catalog as GTT.
- 5. Do I really get MONEY BACK if you miss my turn?
Yes! We refund you a full $100 per day, for every day we are late on a guaranteed turn time project. Up to a full $500 refund! (Don't count that money yet – we aren't going to miss your turn time!) Please see more details in “Oasis Terms and Conditions” below and at oasisCD.com/gtt.
- 6. What about overruns and underruns?
We try to deliver as close to the exact number of units ordered as possible, but it's important that you allow for as much as 5% over or under that number. The reason for overruns and underruns is this: all CD plants manufacture a bit more than you order, then discard any copies that don't meet quality standards. If there are more discards than we expect, you'll receive fewer copies than you ordered; if there aren't many discards, you'll receive somewhat more. You will only be charged for the exact number of CDs or DVDs you receive. Don't want to pay for overs? Simply prepay your order in full and they're free!
- 7. I'm confused about cover songs and sampling…
Cover songs are easily and economically dealt with. If your CD includes music that you did not write, you owe a small licensing fee (“mechanical royalty”) to the copyright holder of each cover song. It's generally very easy to get this license online at www.songfile.com for quantities of 2,500 or less.
We encourage you to happily support your fellow musicians in their efforts to earn a living, and we trust that when they record your songs, they'll do the same.
Sampling is harder. If your CD includes music that is sampled from other works, you have to get licenses from the original master's owner, which can be difficult and expensive. Remixes and DJ CDs are equally difficult to clear. Oasis can not manufacture from a master that contains any unlicensed samples.
- 8. What kind of master should I send?
Master formats we accept:
• CD-R master (16-bit/ 44.1kHz CDA format only)
• DDP 2.0 file set (typically prepared by a professional mastering engineer)
Requires Preparation by Frankford Wayne Mastering:
• WAV/AIFF files on CD-R or via upload
• Mini Disk*
• Digital Audio Tape (DAT)*
• 1/2" or 1/4" Analog Tape*
* DAT, analog tape, and Mini Disk masters will need additional work performed by Frankford Wayne Mastering in order to prepare a replication ready master and may incur additional costs.
Additional technical information:
Digital Audio Tape (DAT)
• Digital Audio Tape: 44.1 kHz or 48 kHz sampling rate
• Pre-roll: 10-15 seconds recorded silence. (Optional) Calibration tone: 1 kHz at -12 dB (never at 0 dB).
• Start IDs: sequentially numbered, placed at the start of each selection, one number per song.
• A sampling rate of 44.1 kHz is highly recommended.
• Your dB meters should peak no higher than 0, with no over levels, and must average above -15 dB (Red Book minimum standard).
• Be sure your DAT and box are labeled.
1/2" or 1/4" Analog Tape
• 30 ips, 15 ips, or 7 1/2 ips.
• Alignment (test) tones at head: 1 kHz, 10 kHz, and 100 kHz at 0 dB operating level.
• Indicate type of noise reduction, if any, and include proper tones.
• Leader tape at head and tail of tape (15 seconds minimum) and two to four seconds in between songs.
• Tape slow-wound, tails out, in properly labeled box.
- 9. What is a DDP Master?
A DDP 2.0 file set is an industry standard replication format typically prepared by a professional mastering engineer using specialized software. The “file set” typically consists of 4-5 files that contain the audio, track ID information, and optionally, CD-Text information. The DDP format is well suited for electronic delivery to Oasis as it can be easily uploaded through our website and delivered directly to the plant.
- 10. Is it better to upload my master or mail it in?
Uploading your master can be faster, cheaper, and more convenient than mailing a physical copy to us in some cases. By uploading your master you avoid the cost and time involved in shipping a physical copy of your master. Using our Master Uploader App (if you have a finished audio CD master), or having a DDP 2.0 master uploaded by your mastering engineer, on your behalf, are two convenient ways to deliver your master to us. You may also upload individual WAV or AIFF files to us, but these files require preparation by the engineers at Frankford Wayne mastering in order to create a replication ready master. A downloadable proof that must be listened to and approved is also required when individual files are uploaded to us.
To get started with our Master Uploader App just choose the "Audio CD" option at the beginning of the upload process!
- 11. Are MP3s, WMA files, or other “compressed” formats acceptable for mastering or replication?
We strongly discourage the submission of any “compressed” format as a source for a replication order or mastering with Frankford Wayne. A “lossy” format, such as MP3, has had some audio information removed in order to reduce the file size. At lower bitrates this can cause reduced frequency response and digital “artifacts” that make these file types unacceptable as a master format. Submitting these types of formats may also cause a delay in processing your order as we confirm with you that you are certain you wish to proceed with this file type.
- 12. How does a UPC Bar Code work?
The Universal Product Code (UPC) is a specific type of bar code that is widely used in North America and in other countries including the UK, Australia and New Zealand for tracking trade items in stores. The most common type, the UPC-A, consists of a scannable strip of black bars and whites spaces and a sequence of 12 numerical digits. A distinct UPC code must be purchased for each product. For example, if you have a UPC code for a CD/DVD you've already created you must have a new UPC code for any new CD/DVD you've made and are planning to distribute and sell.
As an Oasis client you can purchase a unique and genuine UPC bar code for just $20. The code is yours and yours alone, permanently. This is important for retail sales, and for most Web sales as well. Alternatively, you can join the Uniform Code Council at www.uc-council.org. The cost for this is $750, but you can generate numerous bar codes for your own use.
- 13. What are ISRC Codes?
The International Standard Recording code (ISRC) is an international standard code used for uniquely identifying sound recordings. ISRC codes are used to trace the sales of single tracks through digital distribution outlets like i-Tunes, as well as to help show who the owner of the recording is when their recording is used by terrestrial, internet and/or satellite radio and television broadcasters in order to pay the owner of the recording royalties.
ISRC codes identify a particular recording, not the song itself. Therefore, different recordings, edits, and remixes of the same song will each have their own ISRC code. ISRC codes are allocated by national ISRC agencies to both corporations and individuals. ISRC codes are always 12 characters long and are made up of four parts. The first two characters indicate the country code (for example, if the recording came form the United States, it would be US). The next three characters uniquely identify the organization which registered the code. Typically the appropriate regulating body in each country will issue a three letter code to each record label or organization. The next two characters are the last two digits of the year of registration (not necessarily the date of the recording). If you registered for the code in 2003 this would appear as 03. And finally the last 5 characters are a unique number indentifying the particular sound recording.
So, for example, a code could appear as US-PR3-73-00012 (US = United States, PR3 = the organization, 73 = the year 1973 and 00012 = the unique ID indentifying this particular recording).
- 14.What type of project is considered to be a “Compilation”?
Oasis defines a compilation as any project where there are multiple artists and/or bands (at least two or more artists/bands independent from the customer or the customer's band) performing on a CD.
If your project is a compilation you must submit artist agreements completed and signed by the artists/representative of each band performing (Oasis provides artist agreement forms and also accepts personal contracts that you may have with the artists/bands and/or email correspondence showing that the artist/band has agreed to be a part of the compilation) along with a track list which highlights all of the different artists/bands and which songs they are performing.
If you are the representative/owner of a record label/production company in which all of the artists/bands performing on the compilation are under your company artist agreements are required, as well.
- 15. Can I include Cover Songs?
If you are performing and/or recording a cover song on a CD, a mechanical license is required, per copyright law. A mechanical license is an agreement that allows users to record and distribute a composition they don't control. It is quite easy to obtain these licenses through our partner Easy Song Licensing (Visit: http://www.oasiscd.com/coversong to learn more). Easy Song Licensing will allow you to secure a mechanical license and will pay mechanical royalties to songwriters and publishers on your behalf for both physical and digital releases. NOTE: This explanation is not intended to be exhaustive, and applies only to audio recordings. Significant additional rules apply to music usage for DVDs and other video instruments, a subject not covered here.
- 16. When my customers put my CD in their player, will my album title and track names show up?
The short answer is: "It depends what kind of player they're using and on what steps you've taken before they put it in the player." If they're putting your CD into an Internet-enabled device (such as their computer), the computer is accessing an online database with information that matches your CD. Even though it seems incredibly much to the contrary, please believe us on the following counter-intuitive point: The information they see does NOT come from your CD — it comes from a database file that is believed to match your CD. (If there is an error in that database file, therefore, it can be corrected; it is not a hard-coded error on the disc. And if nothing is coming up, that also can be easily corrected. Breathe deeply.) There are a few major databases, and the instructions at the bottom of this page will tell you exactly how to make sure you're represented on the biggest two databases in fewer than 15 minutes.
If they're putting your CD into a standalone player, it's another thing altogether. CD-text didn't catch on universally with standalone players, but if you wanted it to show up on the standalone players that do support CD-text it needed to be encoded with CD-text at the mastering stage. Your CD would need to have been encoded with CD-text at the mastering stage (before you sent it to us) and the player would need to support CD-text (not all standalone players do). Not to panic: it's not a default part of the original CD manufacturing standard and is not universally supported even by big record labels.
- 17. I haven't manufactured my CD yet, can you guys make it show text on standalone players?
Even if your mastering engineer didn't encode your master with CD-text, if your CD is not yet in production we can add it for you — speak with your Project Manager or Client Advisor for details and pricing. Note again that CD-text has absolutely nothing to do with computers and that your customer's player has to support CD-text for them to see it. (In other words, we're trying to refer you back up to question 16, the one with all the gratuitous bolding...)
- 18. I want my album information to show up when people use internet-connected computers to play my music!
No problem. There are two big databases that you need to be on, and you can do your part to be listed on these databases in less than 15 minutes. The first database is the Gracenote CDDB (used by iTunes, Winamp, and dozens of other software players). The second is the AllMusicGuide database (used by Windows Media Player). Getting your album information onto these databases is easy and quick:
GRACENOTE CDDB REGISTRATION INSTRUCTIONS:
1. Open iTunes (available as a free download at apple.com).
2. Insert your CD and wait for iTunes to recognize that a CD is present.
3. Type in the Artist, Title, and Track information for your CD.
4. Check for typos, because your information will be uploaded as you typed it.
5. Click the Advanced tab, then click Submit CD Track Names.
6. Wait and see. In 24-48 hours, your submission will go live at Gracenote!
ALLMUSICGUIDE DATABASE REGISTRATION INSTRUCTIONS:
1. Take one retail-ready CD, put it in a mailer, and send it to:
All Media Guide
1168 Oak Valley Drive
Ann Arbor, MI 48108
2. Allmusic takes care of the rest, and your information is live in 6-16 weeks!
- 19. How / where do I mail in my master?
If you selected Mail-in Master, you will mail your master to our NJ headquarters:
7905 N. Route 130
Delair, NJ 08110
Use a delivery method that allows for tracking, such as UPS, FedEx, or DHL. Be sure to include a copy of the email with your master so we have your project ID number.
- 20. I want to have the official Compact Disc Digital Audio logo on my project — can you put that on for me?
Better than that, we provide free of charge a font that includes this and many other standard industry logos. Visit our Template page.
- 21. What if I can't supply my own design?
If you are even slightly familiar with design programs and their principles, you can use our online designer to create your package artwork. We also have a wonderful group of designers on hand that can create a custom design for you. Visit the Oasis DesignWorks website for more info.
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