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Sep 6 2012, 7:25am Anchor

So as an indie developer I'm still somewhat in the dark on what the going price is on Audio-products, specifically, background music.I'm hoping some of you with experience in the audio department could help me shed some light on my issue.

  • What is method do you use to bill your music (per minute, per song, etc) ?
  • How do you walk through the process of audio development (do you make 3 examples or more, do you bill those?)
  • What is your average price for a song (or from your experience ) ?

Edited by: maever

Sep 6 2012, 1:46pm Anchor

Make sure you scan the forums for guys who do stuff like this for free, first. Why pay when there are lots of high-quality composers out there who are happy with some proper credit?

The pricing depends solely on the composers' preference; some charge you per minute, some per song, and some even per instrument used.
You just have to find a composer who is flexible and is ready to negotiate a pricing method with you.

Also, look for people who don't charge more than really is necessary. I've come across people charging around 10$ per minute of their songs; that is in fact quite cheap, but it really does depend on the composers' experience and preference.

The process of audio development is usually your decision. You could generally ask a composer for some samples, just to see if the music would fit in the game. Again you'd have to negotiate a bit with the composer regarding this matter.

Good luck mate!

Sep 6 2012, 2:01pm Anchor
L00vre wrote:
Make sure you scan the forums for guys who do stuff like this for free, first. Why pay when there are lots of high-quality composers out there who are happy with some proper credit? 

Paying for a composer should be your last resort, admittedly composing really completes a game and like L00vre said most are happy with credit as if your game blows up really well they gain a lot of notice.

Sep 6 2012, 3:47pm Anchor

I've wondered this myself, that and sound effects. I also worry that people might just go on newgrounds or free sound effect sites and just rip stuff from their and present it as their own.

Obsidiaguy
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Sep 6 2012, 10:48pm Anchor
SabreXT wrote:I've wondered this myself, that and sound effects. I also worry that people might just go on newgrounds or free sound effect sites and just rip stuff from their and present it as their own.

Boy, that would be unfortunate. The best you can do in that situation is check some references. If you're going to be paying someone for their services, they should have some experience anyway. Maybe they have images or videos of them working their craft as well.

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Sep 16 2012, 4:13am Anchor

well, personally, I just ask for credit. Money is just a bonus.
when the relationship between the sound/music guy and the developer is good and the product given is also good, they tend to split the profits anyway.
yeah you shouldn't look for someone who charges as there is a bunch of people doing it for free out there, although most of them don't really have the equipment to record stuff (it's expensive you know)

Sep 16 2012, 12:49pm Anchor

Thanks for all your replies, though we have a composer on board with our project.

The main purpose was to get an idea of what the going rates are so that we have an understanding on the matter for future reference.
If these are private matters then feel free to PM instead :)

Sep 18 2012, 5:41am Anchor
  • What is method do you use to bill your music (per minute, per song, etc) ?

    Every freelancer operates under different rules, but I personally find it simpler to just charge for an entire work (track). What exactly the rate is for that track is decided after I get a thorough idea of just how much work it will entail. A simple day of work on 1 light track will go for around $300 for me.
     

  • How do you walk through the process of audio development (do you make 3 examples or more, do you bill those?)

    I make drafts and start providing the client with these drafts so he can follow along with my progress. No, I don't charge for these, because he's not asking me to do "more work", I'm just showing him the same track in its different stages. Once I feel the track is complete, I usually allow for 1 or 2 revisions if the client wants some prominent changes. Once you exceed the agreed-upon revision limit, then you're charged per revision.
     

  • What is your average price for a song (or from your experience ) ?

     It really depends on what exactly needs to be done with the track. The two most expensive things with me are rock (or band-like) music and digital/electronica stuff. These tend to take the most time with me. So if you want a pro-sounding rock track, it's gonna be closer to $800. Orchestral stuff, on the other hand, is where I'm really at home - plus I don't have to do THAT much mixing since the libraries I have sound awesome out of the box. So you'll actually find me cheaper with an orchestral score.

    In a nutshell? It depends. Just scout composers when you need one, and ask them individually how they work. Really the only way UNLESS you go union!

Edited by: richieblac

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