Here it is, folks … the reason I’ve been neglecting all my weblogs in the last week:

enigmatics short-run pressing

Yes, those are actual printed CDs. Sort of. They’re all actually blank, but they’ve been printed with the artwork I provided.

I experimented with using a service called Mixonic, which is the short-run duplication arm of Discmakers (both links point to variations of the same site.) Mixonic allows you to print as few as one CD and as many as 1,000. The whole transaction is self-service through an online interface, right down to designing the cover.

I opted to provide my own artwork. For this first try, I ordered 10 blank CDs. They could have run the duplication themselves, but I would have had to upload or mail a master to them. I wanted to have the discs before I left on my trip next week, so I’m going to burn them myself.

A lot of CD pressing plants offer short-run services, and blank CDs printed in bulk with custom artwork is an option. Truthfully, Mixonic CDs are a lot more expensive than other quotes I’ve seen, but Mixonic doesn’t require a minimum. Most plants have a minumum of 50 or a 100.

I’m in no position to consider a short-run on any other Eponymous 4 project, but enigmatics has been in the can for about eight years now. I’m willing to start pushing for a more formalized release. This short-run duplication experiment was the first step to that goal.

(I need to do more mixing. I’m not using the stereo field nearly enough.)

As for the artwork, I laid it out in QuarkXpress 7.1, exported to a PDF, opened it up in Photoshop and made a 300dpi JPEG file out of it. I’m not sure how Mixonic is set up, but they request RGB files instead of the usual CMYK.

Even though I pretty much foot the bill for this pressing experiment, there’s something about seeing my name in liner notes that makes this feel more … official, somehow.

Perhaps there is more to come?