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The Alesis QS line gets a flagship, with a weighted keyboard, controller features, and an extended sound set. Helmsman Martin Russ finds out whether she's seaworthy...
Studio Condenser Microphone
A well respected studio favourite for several years, Audio Technica's cardioid AT4033 has now been slightly updated. Paul White reassures himself that the warm 4033 sound remains unchanged...
Yet another ultra-compact mixer emerges from R&D, to fierce competition from similar models by other manufacturers. David Mellor does a spot of channel-hopping...
Ever wondered what it would be like to be the member of the opposite sex? Derek Johnson finds out...
Paul White tries out an intriguingly-styled US-built mic and discovers that tonal honesty can occasionally be a very good studio policy.
Most of the major music software manufacturers now recognise the PC as a serious music platform and are ensuring that the PC versions of the software don't miss out on any important features. Paul White gives an overview of the latest Logic Audio for Windows '95 and compares it with the Mac version.
To create the MR Keyboard line, Ensoniq could simply have taken the insides out of their MR Rack module and grafted on a keyboard. Instead, they've thought long and hard about what a performing and composing musician really needs from his instrument. Julian Colbeck applauds the result.
Many budding engineers aspire to Forcusrite equipment, but until recently, its cost has made it the exclusive province of the professional. The Green range aims to change all that, while still retaining the legendary Focusrite quality. Paul White gives it the green light.
Long before the M1, Korg tried to win the hearts of synth fans with the diminutive MS20. Norman Fay steps back in time.
LA Audio have taken the best bits from their mic preamps, compressors and equalisers to create a dedicated, single channel mic/line processor. Paul White patches it in.
Studio Power Amplifier
Paul White tests a new British power amplifier to see if it sounds as good as it looks.
General MIDI Sound Module
Could this be the most diminutive general MIDI module on the market? Derek Johnson finds out whether small is beautiful...
Modular Mixing System
We've all heard of a modular mixing desks - &mdash but perhaps not where all the modules are rackmounting and can be mixed and matched to form a custom console, or used alone. Hugh Robjohns makes all the right connections.
Digital Stereo Effects Processor
Eight true stereo simultaneous effects for £300? In the battle to squeeze the best possible performance from budget digital processors, this charming new multi-effects unit has some serious power nestling in its coils. Paul Farrer 'snakes' a look at the Addverb 3 and jumps out of his skin with delight...
Mixed mode CDS * Upfront lead guitar = 4 * Synth bass loops = 5 * Live bass grooves = 3 * Bass separates = 4 * Drum and Percussion tools = 3 * Vintage Keyboards = 3 * Dance drums = 4 * Jungle frenzy = 4 * Reggae Connection = 4
Spirit's new baby monitors incorporate some of the design principles used in pro monitors costing many times the price. But have too many corners been cut to keep the price so low? Paul White finds out.
8-channel Valve Signal Processor
More and more people are choosing digital recording systems, which is creating a spin-off market for valve processors designed to lend a more comfortable warmth to the resulting recordings. Hugh Robjohns looks at an SPL unit being touted as the ideal partner for eight tracks of digital.
Analogue Tone Chameleon
A synth's filter plays a major part in defining its sound, and creates the particular character of the best-loved vintage analogue models. Courtesy of its different filter cartridges, the ATC1 aims to be able to change its sound to suit your needs. Paul Nagle plugs in.
Valve Voice Processor & Valve Preamp
The TL Audio Indigo range keeps on expanding, with cost-effective hybrid valve/solid state processors emerging for every studio purpose. Paul White discovers that Indigo can be a very warm colour...
Piano Tone Generator
Almost a decade since the release of their classic EMT10, Yamaha have returned To the piano module market, spinning off some of the technology used in their top-end digital pianos and using it in an inexpensive half-rack expander format. Dave Crombie tickles the virtual ivories...
Paul Wiffen, a ferocious advocate of hardware sequencers for many years, takes a look at Yamaha's new flagship sequencer and finds himself reminiscing about the way things were (and could be again).
People + Opinion
Big Briar Etherware & Longwave Instruments Pocket Theremin
This early electronic instrument has been enjoying something of a renaissance, with an unprecedented number of theremin kits and fully-assembled instruments coming on to the market. Derek Johnson reflects on the history of the Theremin and looks at two very different commercially-available models.
Interview | Artist
After much high-profile production work in the 1980s, David Lord retreated from the stress of the pop world to concentrate on chosen projects which would exercise his considerable composing and arranging talents. Paul Tingen runs him to earth at Terra Incognita studios, for a long-overdue update.
At Home With
TV music composer David Lowe tells Paul White how a British Airways World commercial took him halfway around the world — and back...
Interview | Manufacturer
Within just a few years, the Mackie brand has come from almost nowhere to a prominent position in the project studio mixer market. Now the company are looking to the future and deciding where they can next apply the Mackie philosophy. Paul White takes a busman's holiday to Seattle and looks behind the scenes in R&D.
Interview | Engineer
Richard Buskin talks to top engineer Jon Jacobs and learns about his partnership with legendary man-behind-the-board, Geoff Emerick, and the novel techniques they employed during the making of the latest album by Elvis Costello and The Attractions.
Debbie Poyser and Derek Johnson fold up the cybermap, put the virtual surfboards back into storage, and conclude their musician's guide to the internet.
• Read Part 1 (October 1996)
'Manager' speaks with forked tongue, says Rehearsal Studio co-owner Nicholee Smith.
One of the PC's plus points is its adaptability to a variety of tasks depending on the extra hardware installed in it — and the soundcard used can make or break it as a musical tool. In this two-part series, Brian Heywood takes a look at the various types of soundcard available.
• Read Part 2 (December 1996)
Ofir Gal and Derek Johnson round up more Atari software and hardware news, and discover a new online Atari magazine.
When your PC soundcard ceases to function, the newly connected external controller very often gets the blame — wrongly. Brian Heywood identifies some possible alternative causes.
Janet Harniman-Cook quite literally takes the lid off the PC, and explains why she thinks it's the best bet for the future of music.
Tips & Tricks
Paul White looks at the components of a PC-based desktop music system, and suggests some helpful ways of using such setups in conjunction with more 'traditional' studio equipment.
The PC-owning community now seems to be split into two camps — those who already record onto hard disk, and those who would like to, but have not yet worked out what equipment they really need. Martin Walker guides you past the pitfalls and perils.
Tips & Tricks
Paul White gives some foolproof step-by-step ideas for creating contemporary and vintage guitar sounds in the studio.
Martin Russ gets to grips with Quick Time 2.5, explains how Weird Blinking Lights work, and gives his regular roundup of Mac news and useful 'net addresses.
Playback | Readers' Music Reviewed
Sontiche * Julian Batchelor * * Voyd * Pulse * Polly Gabriel * Stone Premonitions * Nobody * Fernando Mura
Multi-port MIDI interface and patchbays can seem an expensive indulgence for the average studio. But, as Martin Russ explains in the concluding part of this two-part feature, they can really help you to get the best use from the MIDI gear you already own.
• Read Part 1 (October 1996)