Canada Post Venture One

* You should sign up for a Canada Post Venture One Card asap (It takes a month to arrive). It saves you 5% on regular parcels shipped in Canada.

Press Kit notes

* When you send out vinyl, you should include a One-Sheet about the release & a DJ Feedback Form (which includes an Add date). A Biography is optional.

Manufacturing

* Expect the vinyl manufacturing to take 6-7 weeks from when you place the order to when it arrives to you. Places where you can manufacture vinyl:
www.mmsdirect.com
www.piratespress.com

Test Pressing

* Always, always, always ask for a test pressing. It'll cost you about $50 extra, but if you find a defect early on, then it'll save you thousands of dollars. Make sure you get an experienced DJ to listen to the test pressings and keep the weight on the needle low.

Song Time per Side

* For a 12" vinyl release, it is recommended you only put 12 minutes per side, with a recommended maximum of 14 minutes. (Although I've heard people putting upwards of 20 minutes per side). However, if you have more minutes per side, then the quality & thickness of the grooves on the vinyl will decline. 14 minutes seems to be an accepted amount of time per side for most independent releases.

Mastering

* Vinyl mastering is different from CD mastering. Make sure the engineer you choose has mastering experience with vinyl. If you're going with MMS for manufacturing, they have a guy who does mastering (Jon Drew or something like that).

Shipping Boxes

* You'll need shipping boxes. Either start gathering them from a DJ who gets serviced with wax, or you can usually buy them from your manufacturer. MMS sells them, just keep reminding them cause they forgot to send mine with the vinyl.

Postage Costs in Canada (2004)

* As of Dec 2004, Shipping for one piece of vinyl to the US is $5.10 by Small Packet surface which takes 1-3 weeks. Two pieces is $8.50. Sending within Canada, I use Regular Parcel which takes 2-9 business days and for up to 2 copies costs between $7 - $10 depending on location. The rate calculator for Regular Parcel is here.

BDS & SOCAN

* If you don't know how to sign up with Broadcast Data Services or SOCAN, review my 6 Essential Steps.

Jackets vs Stickers

* If you opt to have plain black or white jackets for the vinyl, instead of colour, it'll save you somewhere around $700 I think. Instead maybe think about doing up a sticker design - I got my done at http://www.colorstickers.com

CD versions & Station Drops

* Also, DJs often like getting the tracks on CD as well, so if it's possible to include that, it's a bonus. Station drops are even better!

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