Mastering Shootout

Tape Master

There has been a renewed explosion of discussion about Auto Mastering and whether it's worth forking out the few dollars to get a program to master your music for you instead of using a professional engineer (or learning to do it yourself).

So, I decided to take one of my songs which I had professionally mastered and do a little shoot out. 

I wanted things to be as real world as possible, but I also wanted the test to be highly accessible. So, I decided on using High Quality Mp3s encoded at 320kbps using the extreme encoding settings in Reaper. I encoded the files  from the original wave file masters using Reaper 5 and the lame mp3 encoder.

In no particular order, the tracks were mastered using the following:
To complete the test, 
If you are having trouble downloading the zip file, try this direct link

If you are ready to see which is which, click here!

Which is better: A Real Mastering Engineer or a Program?