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Previously, in Part 1 of this series on studio monitors, we discussed the advantages of mixing your productions on "studio monitors" instead of of "speakers." To recap, we learned that monitors will replicate the volume of different frequencies (or pitches) with far greater accuracy than speakers, and, as such, are best suited for engineers needing to to make informed decisions in their mix.
Many budding recordists have heard the term "direct box," or even used one without really knowing what it does. Maybe you've heard that a direct box (or DI) matches the "impedance" of your devices, but you really have no idea what that means. If all you're looking for is a nice tone from your instrument into your computer, then don't fret--a strong understanding of impedance is not necessary--but, you may want a little back-story to help wrap your mind around the concept (if not, skip to the section about types).
Can a modern product like SSL’s X-Desk really compare with their classic large format consoles? If so, you may finally be able to mix through the same mix bus as the many of the best engineers in the world. I put the X-Desk’s summing to the test against the 9000J, and also did some serious thinking about this seemingly stripped down mixer. I’ll do my best to provide an accurate summary of its analog summing.
A lot of music is being made these days in bedrooms, living rooms, and garages. The sound quality you can achieve with minimal equipment is amazing, but the neutrality of your studio monitors is anything but. Treating a room properly for accurate monitoring isn't easy, but IK Multimedia's ARC promises to remedy this issue. I gave the ARC a test drive in my home studio, and was really surprised at how deeply flawed my system was, and how deeply afraid my cat became.
Have you ever dreamed of becoming a professional sports commentator? Do you constantly chatter about the activity on the field when you watch sporting events? Do you drive your family and friends crazy with your armchair sportscasting? Maybe it's time you started taking your untapped skills more seriously. In this post I'll show you the most commonly used tool in sportscasting, and give you tips on how to train for the big leagues.
A new firmware update was released yesterday for the popular Sound Devices 552 field mixer. The firmware adds a new muting capability which enables you to exclude a channel from the master output, while still sending the signal to the direct and digital outs.
When people hear the name Sanken, they mistakenly think of decaf coffee, rather than a microphone company. While Sanken isn't as well known as Sennheiser or Neumann, their sound is everywhere. Any time you watch TV or movies, you're likely listening to Sanken's COS-11 lavaliers and its CS3e shotgun. Sanken recently announced the new CS-2 shotgun mic, which offers a longer pick-up pattern in a short body. Think of it as the world's first caffeinated short shotgun mic.
Spaghetti is a tasty and cost-effective meal; however, if you're not careful, your wires and cables have the potential to turn into it. When you acquire multiple pieces of equipment, you can end up with a messy tangle of AC adapters before you notice. It's always a good idea to keep them organized with Rip-Ties, but I've found it can be even more helpful to label them with tape and magic markers. Here's how I do it...
In the April issue of Sound on Sound Magazine, Rostam Batmanglij, guitarist of the band Vampire Weekend, stated the following: "I immediately try to go for the finished article as far as possible, because I don’t believe in demos and re-recording. Not in this day and age. You will always try to recapture the magic of that first recording, so I don’t do it.” What do you think? Are demos counter-productive?
One of the coolest things about being a guitarist in a band is that you get to rock out with an awesome looking electric guitar. The same thing goes for drummers. There are few things that are cooler looking than drum sets. But what about the lead singer? Microphones are sort of cool looking, but that doesn't really cut it. The solution is to hit the stage with a stylish chrome Ultimate Support MC-90C mic stand.
The year 2010 marked, for better or worse, my fourth consecutive National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) convention. It was, for the industry's sake, good to see larger crowds than I remember from the past couple years, and, at the very least, there seemed to be more “excitement” in the air. In particular, 3-D was all the rage (and, should you be interested, 2009 was notable for DSLR Video, 2008 for The Great Recession and 2007 for Final Cut Studio and The Red Camera). It was as though most companies had, overnight (post-Avatar), transitioned their entire business model to remodeling your favorite sporting event or video game. I was skeptical at first, thinking 3-D sounded a bit “gimmicky,” but that all faded away the moment I laid my bespectacled eyes on the massive 3-D purposed screen in Sony's booth. It appears the third dimension really does make all the difference.
Sony's new Acid Music Studio 8 comes with an impressive amount of power for such an inexpensive audio application. A new piano instrument and a tube guitar amp simulator have been added, as well as movie import mix-to-picture capabilities. In this post I'll give you an idea of what's possible with this software, and show you a list of features now included in Acid Music Studio 8 that were previously only available in Acid Pro.
The laws of physics have always posed annoying challenges for capturing clear sound in film and video production. One such obstacle is how to focus a microphone on a sound you want to hear, while ignoring sounds you don't. The Schoeps SuperCMIT 2U Digital Shotgun has taken us one step closer to solving this problem. It may be expensive, but a tool that can improve the clarity of dialog and sound effects is worth its weight in Oscar gold.
Modern television is filled with shows about high-tech crime investigators, and the detectives in these shows almost always use touch screen computers. Often times their futuristic computers take the form of a large glass wall in the center of the room, where at the touch of a finger an officer can instantly display a suspect’s file. The entertainment world is fixated on predicting what touch screen technology will look like and how it will operate, even though it’s already here. Since 2007, gadgets like the iPod Touch have revolutionized how human beings interact with electronics.
Audio waveforms are among the greatest tools that the digital audio revolution has given musicians and producers. But sometimes it's important to forget they're there. It's wonderful that so many audio tools have turned into lush, graphical experiences, but making sonic decisions based on visual information isn't always the best way to go. It's funny, when I'm working on a mix, it often takes lots of will power to pull my eyes away from the computer monitor and just listen...