January 1997 In This Issue

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Reviews

Akai CD3000XL

Sampler

Akai's new CD3000XL features the 32-voice polyphony, expansion options, DSP functions and other goodies of the S3000XL, but adds a built-in CD-ROM drive for good measure. Paul Ward takes it for a spin.

Ali Baba & The 40 Ravers

Sample Library

* Score = 3

Audio Technica 4041

Cardioid Capacitor Microphone

Success on a stick? Paul White studio tests a new back electret that would appear to combine strength with sensitivity.

Audioworks Sound 2MIDI

Audio-to-MIDI Conversion Software

The first software release from AudioWorks offers hope to MIDI musicians with limited keyboard skills. Sound2MIDI lets PC users record note-perfect sequences, using only a soundcard and a microphone. Dominic Hawken tests the system.

DBX Project 1 Model 286

Microphone Processor

This new voice channel aims to provide all you need to get a good sound from a mic, at a reasonable price. David Mellor tries it out.

Evolution Music Creator Pro

PC music Package

Paul White explores the budget side of sequencing with Evolution's inexpensive keyboard and PC sequencing software bundle.

Focusrite Green Focus EQ

Preamp/Equaliser

Though it's not exactly cheap, the Green Focus EQ brings professional quality within reach of the serious project studio owner. Paul White does the 'rite thing...

IQS SAW Plus 3.3

Multitrack Recording/Editing Software & IQS Plug-ins

Rather than trying to be a jack of all trades, SAW Plus has made itself a master of one — providing a dedicated multitrack recording and editing environment for digital audio on the PC. Janet Harniman-Cook came, saw, and wrote this review...

Kawai K5000W

Advanced Additive Workstation

Ten years after the K5, Kawai return to the technology which gave them the most successful implementation of additive synthesis ever, and include something of everything else they've learnt in the meantime. Paul Wiffen wonders if it all adds up...

Korg Trinity

Expansion Options

When the Korg Trinity was launched more than a year ago, the list of expansions it would be able to host seemed too good to be true. Now they're all finally available, Paul Wiffen takes stock of the options.

Lexicon MPX1

Reverb & Multi-effects Processor

Paul White explores the far reaches of space with the first of a new generation of effects processors from Lexicon.

MOTU MTP AV

MIDI Interface/Patchbay/Synchroniser

Mike Collins studio-tests a versatile new interface, which works with both Mac and PC and provides professional-level functionality at the right price.

Optifile Drax

VCA Mixing Automation System

Optifile's new VCA automation system is designed to make professional quality automation affordable. Paul White finds out to what extent they've succeeded.

Peavey DeltaFex

Digital Stereo Effects Processor

The Deltafex Digital Stereo Effects Processor offers a stripped-down price to match its streamlined facilities. David Mellor checks it out..

Philip Rees Little MCV

MIDI-CV Converter

Philip Rees have added yet another useful little box to their popular range of MIDI problem solvers. Derek Johnson gets converted.

Philip Wolfe Rock Keyboard Vol. 1

Sample Library

* Score = 3.5

Power Technology DSP-FX

Digital Effects Processor

The DSP-FX is the world's first 32-bit floating point digital effects processing system with a visual interface. It also comes on a standard ISA card for installation in a desktop PC. Dominic Hawken plugs 'n' plays.

SPL Auto Dynamic De-esser

Studio Processor

Paul White makes a bid to trip up the SPL de-esser, but even the phrase 'several sad somnambulists sincerely take tea tearing tickets till sunset' does little to ruffle its electronic feathers.

Steinberg Red Valve It TDM

Guitar Preamp Plug-in

Paul White plugs his very real guitar into a virtual amp and gets down to playing some unimaginable music.

Tascam 414

Portastudio

Though Tascam have embraced the digital generation of Portastudios with their MiniDisk-based 564, they're not about to abandon the low-cost analogue cassette format yet, as proved by their latest analogue machine, the 414. Derek Johnson gets it taped.

Tracer Technologies DART Pro

Noise Reduction Software

Software-based noise removal systems are one way of restoring defective recordings, such as vocal takes ruined by mains hum, or crackly recordings from vinyl — but such systems can be very expensive. The relatively low-cost DART Pro seeks to change all that. Panicos Georghiades and Gabriel Jacobs clean up all round.

Ultra Freakin Bass: Will Lee Bass Library Vol. 2

Sample Library

* Score = 3

Yamaha TX802

FM Synth Module (Retro)

Paul Ward dons a Miami Vice-style jacket and a pair of pink-rimmed Armani shades, and travels back to the '80s heyday of FM synthesis for a retro look at the one-time flagship of Yamaha's synth range, the multitimbral TX802 expander. *

People + Opinion

DANE BUTCHER (SYMETRIX/LUCID): Quality, Digital Hardware

Interview | Manufacturer

Paul White talks to Symetrix President Dane Butcher about the birth of a new PC hardware range, Lucid, intended up to open up the world of high-quality computer-based digital audio at an affordable price.

EAT STATIC: Chart Success

Interview | Band

When techno gurus Eat Static's last album entered the UK charts at number 11 the techno duo threatened to overshadow the achievements of their previous group, Ozric Tentacles. On the eve of their follow-up, Jonathan Miller teleports to darkest Somerset to face conspiracy theories relating 'recovered' alien spacecraft to developments in music technology...

GEORGE WEBLEY: Is The Big Apple Of Pop Music Rotten To The Core?

Sounding Off

Musicologist and composer Big George wonders...

HAROLD BUDD: American Vision

Interview | Artist

Despite having waited eight years to create the follow-up to his 1988 solo album, experimental composer Harold Budd composed and recorded the new album, Luxa, in just 11 days. Paul Tingen finds out how it was done.

MARVIN CAESAR: The Aphex Approach To Compression

Interview | Manufacturer

Aphex is celebrating 21 years in business, during which time the company has diversified from Aural Exciters into signal processing such as compression. However, Aphex President Marvin Caesar feels that the subject of compression is still widely misunderstood. Paul White asks him to set the record straight.

SUZANNE CIANI: Riding The Independent Wave

Interview | Artist

Despite topping over one million world-wide album sales with an established record label, America's First Lady of New Age music, Suzanne Ciani, has opted for an alternative independent route. Jonathan Miller asks why...

The USA's Low-budget Record Revolution

Exploration

The proliferation of independent record labels in the USA has increased the demand for low-budget records, and sparked the home music studio market, moving it from spare bedroom demo mill to centre stage. Our man in America, Dan Daley, reports.

Technique

Apple Expo 1996; File Management

Apple Notes

This month, MacOS evangelist Martin Russ reports back from the recent optimistic Apple Expo show, and dishes out some more tips on file management.

Choosing PC Drives & Controllers, Part 1

Tips & Techniques

If you have to decide what to delete on your PC before installing a new program, it's time to consider a bigger disk drive. In the first of this two-part series, Martin Walker explains why size isn't all you have to consider when making your choice...
• Read Part 2 (February 1997)

Early Sound Scattering & Control Room Design

Exploration

How can adding randomness to your monitoring improve its accuracy? Acoustic designer Andrew Parry explains how applying Early Sound Scattering (ESS) design principles can help to make studio control rooms of different dimensions sound subjectively similar.

Elly Brown

Playback | Readers' Music Reviewed

Kat * Lonsboro * Leaf * Ganymede * Bubble * The Heart That Glows * One Nation

Emulating Dolby Surround Encoding With A Stereo Mixer

Tips & Tricks

If you have a cheap Dolby Surround decoder in your home — say as part of a 'home cinema' entertainment system — and a stereo mixer as part of your recording setup, you have everything you need to start mixing in Surround sound. Hugh Robjohns explains how to enter another dimension...

Musicator Audio

PC Notes

Brian Heywood studio tests PC scoring/sequencing package Musicator, which has just gone audio, as well as handing out a few PC Notes Awards for '96...

Recording The Spoken Voice

Tips & Tricks

Experienced engineers know that recording the spoken voice properly is actually more difficult than recording a singer. Hugh Robjohns explains why this is so, and passes on some hints and tips for developing a good technique.

Reducing Ambient Noise In Computer-based Studios

Tips & Tricks

You probably don't realise how noisy your computer studio is until you turn everything off and enjoy the silence. Paul D Lehrman explains how you can arrange your setup to reduce noise and restore peace to your working environment.

TOS 2.06; Swiss Precision; Keychange Music Services

Atari Notes

Derek Johnson plugs a Swiss TOS-based computer, reveals plans for more Atari shows, and sets the record straight on Atari hard drives...

Using Short Delays To Create Up-front Ambience

Tips & Tricks

Craig Anderton explains how you can use your multi-effects unit to create contemporary short delay treatments.

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