I am currently working on several projects at different rates. Obviously rate is a factor when I decide what I will do on a given day, but so are project deadlines and even my particular mood (Jazz, Reggae, Rap or Hardcore?). I do get around to all projects with reasonable rates. So how can YOU figure out a good rate to offer for your project? This may help:
First, calculate your budget for mixing and/or mastering for the project. Do not forget to anticipate the budget you will need for recording, duplication, graphics, marketing and distribution. You should not end up with a set number, but rather a RANGE that you would be comfortable within.
Next, think about the work you will need done. How many songs? How long? How many tracks of instruments in each song? Do you need mixing, mastering or both? I suggest using the mixing / mastering request form on my web site to gather your information.
Finally, start to look at local studios. What range of prices would you have to pay in order to have the work done near enough for you to attend the sessions? Find the lowest price (bedroom or basement studio) and the highest price (the best commercial studio & top engineer). Bear in mind that "name" engineers can charge as much or more than studio time (it’s not the gear that counts but rather who is working it).
Now you should have two price ranges, how much you want to spend and how much the work can potentially cost.
Of course any work can be done as quickly as possible, but project quality usually increases with the amount of time spent working. Mixes can be "thrown" up or labored over.
If your budget is at the low end of the rates you have been quoted, you may have to accept that your work will have to be done quickly. I would do the work for a rate near the top of your range.
If your budget is similar to the range you have been quoted, I would do the work for a rate between 2/3 and the top of your range. Please bear in mind that time spent working is still based on project budget.
If your budget exceeds the range you have been quoted, then I suggest we discuss various way you can get the absolute best final product (including how, where and with whom you plan to record the project).
My rates (even flat) are based on a greatly varying hourly rate. I will not quote a specific rate per hour or project, because it would scare away people who cannot afford it and also limit how much I earn with those who can. But what I do promise is that every project will get the proper time and attention according to it’s budget.
"LOW BUDGET LABELS AND "WELL-FED ARTISTS":
Recently there has been an increase in mid-budget work, which follows similar guidelines except for more time to perfect the mix, higher priority scheduling and other advantages.