November 2012 In This Issue

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Competition

WIN - RME Fireface UFX Interface

Deadline: 2012-12-10

The UFX is a 1U, rackmount, multi-channel interface for us with both Mac and PC. The competition is prize worth 1,700 GB Pounds and kindly donated by RME.

WIN - Thermionic Culture Vulture

Deadline: 2012-12-10

Competition prize kindly donated by boutique British manufacturer Thermionic Culture. Worth 2,200 US Dollars.

Reviews

Acoustica Mixcraft 6

Recording & Mixing Software For Windows

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The key features of Acoustica’s Mixcraft have always been affordability and ease of use. Version 6 builds on these strengths but also adds a new Pro Studio edition.

Apogee Quartet

USB Audio Interface For Mac

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This sleek four-channel interface and monitor controller embodies all the quality and style we’ve come to expect from Apogee.

App Works

Making Music On The Move

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This month we look at iOS products from: VirSyn Addictive Synth, MicW i825 and the Wizdom Music SpaceWiz.

Boss FB2 Feedback Booster

Guitar Pedal

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The FB2 is an unusual pedal incorporating some rather clever technology that allows guitar players to create genuine feedback-...

Coopersonic Dirtbox & Germaniac

Stomp Box Distortion Effects

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Based in Nottingham, UK, Coopersonic Audio Engineering are responsible for a growing range of hand-wired effects pedals.

DAW Control Surfaces - Roundup

Spotlight

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Tired of navigating complex audio software with just a mouse and keyboard? Then a control surface might be just what you need. Here’s our selection of current models, with links to the SOS review where available.

FBT Vertus CLA 604A & CLA 208SA

Compact Line Array

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Need a compact and discreet PA that still delivers quality sound? Then the FBT Vertus might just be for you...

Fender Super Champ X2

Valve Guitar Combo With DSP Effects & USB Interface

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With a valve power-amp stage, a DSP modelled preamp and effects section, and direct-to-computer recording, this amp is brimming with promise. Can it deliver?

Focusrite Forte

USB Audio Interface

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The Forte is Focusrite’s attempt to build the best compact USB audio interface possible. Have they hit this ambitious target?

Geithain RL906

Active Nearfield Monitors

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Don’t let their diminutive size fool you: these are serious monitors that punch way above their weight.

Knif Soma

Analogue Mastering EQ

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Costing almost as much as a small car, you’d expect that nothing could cut like a Knif. Find out what made our reviewer invest in a Soma...

Kush Audio UBK1

Dynamics & Distortion Plug-in For Mac & PC

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Does Kush Audio’s expertise in designing analogue equipment translate into the plug-in realm?

Line 6 StageScape M20D

Digital Mixer With Multitrack Recording

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Can you really make a complex, DSP-packed mixer that even musicians with no engineering experience can use? Line 6 think they can...

Microtech Gefell M900

Capacitor Microphone

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Microtech Gefell mics have long been revered for their sonic performance in the studio — so why not use them on stage too?

Microtech Gefell M930Ts

Large-diaphragm Capacitor Microphone

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Almost a decade of experience has only reinforced my appreciation of this unassuming little mic.

Nektar Technology Panorama P4

Controller Keyboard For Reason

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Propellerhead’s Reason gets its first dedicated MIDI keyboard and control surface. What can it offer that your mouse can’t?

Neve 88R LB

500-series Mic Preamp

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The preamp from Neve’s “ultimate analogue console” is now available ‘to go’...

Novation Mininova

Synthesizer

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Novation go back to their portable synth roots with a compact gem that reworks the Ultranova synth engine and adds a few extras...

Preview: Prism Sound Lyra

Audio Interfaces

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Sound On Sound was given an exclusive sneak preview of the first production units in advance of the official product announcement on October 12th.

Rhythmic Robot | Logan

Kontakt 4

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The Logan String Melody and the later Melody II are justifiably revered string machines.

Samplephonics | Warped Phonics

Sample Library

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For this collection, Bulgarian producer Ivan Shopov teamed up with sound designer and producer Airbag Killex.

SE Electronics SE X1R

Ribbon Microphone

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Ribbon mics have long been known for their smooth high end, but can sometimes sound a little on the dull side. Enter the SE X1R...

Studiologic Sledge

Virtual Analogue Synthesizer

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Studiologic’s new Waldorf-powered polysynth is here and it’s very yellow indeed. Put your sunglasses on and meet the Sledge...

Toontrack | Pop! EZX

EZ Drummer/Superior Drummer

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Ever since Toontrack launched EZ Drummer as the lightweight counterpart to Superior, they've been adding expander kits to it to cover just about any commercial style.

Ueberschall | Country Loops

Elastik

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I must confess that country music is one of my guilty pleasures. For all the clichés about good 'ole boys, beer-drinking Rednecks and perpetual heartbreak, the genre is often a masterclass in songwriting and musicianship.

Vertigo VSC2

VCA Compressor

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There are many VCA compressors available, at a range of prices, but very few employ a fully discrete gain-reduction element. So what exactly does this design feature bring to the table?

Vertigo VSC2 | Media

VCA Compressor

Audio files to accompany the article.

Waves NLS

Console Emulation Plug-in For Mac & PC

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Waves are the latest manufacturers to try to package the sound of large-format mixing consoles in plug-in form.

People + Opinion

Bob Williams: The Analogue Systems Story

Modular Masters

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Who are the most successful British synth manufacturers of all time? Hint: they’re alive and well — and busier than ever...

Keeping It Simple

Leader

Looking back over some very old leader columns, I came across some of my comments and suggestions for making aspects of music technology more friendly.

Playback

Readers' Music Reviewed

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This month we review: Lois, LTS, Three Little Words, The Paul Hegley Band, Sea Stacks and Jabi Shriki

Sounding Off

When does a favour become a chore?

Barrington Haynes asks the question.

Steve Greenwell discusses Joss Stone

Inside Track | Secrets Of The Mix Engineers:

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Steve Greenwell knew he wanted a live feel for Joss Stone’s second album of soul covers, but finding the right mix was more of a challenge.

Technique

Apple Notes

Great little apps

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This month, we take a look at some great little apps for problem solving.

Basic Instinct

Digital Performer Tips & Techniques

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As we wait with bated breath for the release of DP8, let’s revise some core DP techniques…

Efterklang

Recording Piramida

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The abandoned Soviet mining village of Pyramiden provided Efterklang with a unique recording venue — and the constant threat of being eaten by polar bears.

Environmental Health

Logic Tips & Techniques

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Learn how to import and combine Environment layers to create new MIDI facilities for your projects.

Get Real

Cubase Tips & Techniques

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These simple steps in Cubase 5 will make your programmed acoustic drum tracks sound more authentic.

Get Real | Media

Cubase Tips & Techniques

Audio files to accompany the article.

Layers Of Complexity

The SOS Drum-layering Masterclass

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Whether you’re programming electronic beats, or reinforcing rock drums, there’s more to drum layering than meets the ear.

Layers Of Complexity | Media

The SOS Drum-layering Masterclass

The audio files on this page accompany the SOS Drum Layering Masterclass.

Oasis ‘Wonderwall’

Classic Tracks

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For many, (What’s The Story) Morning Glory? is Oasis’s masterpiece. Producer and engineer Owen Morris tells us the story of its creation.

Pitch Perfect

Sonar Tips & Techniques

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Fix vocal pitch in Sonar without nasty correction artifacts.

Reverb Revisited

Reason Tips & Techniques

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It’s a Reason reverberation extravaganza this month, as we look at the tools available and how to use them.

Session Notes

The Practical Craft Of Recording

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When you’re recording away from the studio and under time constraints, you need to get the big decisions right — and not become bogged down in detail.

Session Notes | Media

The Practical Craft Of Recording

Audio files to accompany the article.

Shift Yourself

Ableton Live Tips & Technique

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We see why there’s much more to Live’s Frequency Shifter effect than meets the eye...

Starting Points

Pro Tools Tips & Techniques

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Pro Tools’ template system, and its undocumented Track Presets feature, can help your sessions get moving faster.

Studio SOS

Joe Matera in Victoria, Australia sent out the call.

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With a little cunning and resourcefulness, you can improve the sound of nearly any studio — even when it’s on the other side of the world!

The Mix Review

We examine the production of some recent hit records to help you brush up your listening skills.

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This month's tracks are from Madonna, Justin Bieber, Elbow, Maroon 5 and Flo Rida.

What’s In A Name?

Studio One Tips & Techniques

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Sometimes Studio One expresses itself differently to other DAWs, but don’t let that put you off...

Windows 8 support for touchscreen

PC Notes

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Now that Windows 8 supports touchscreen operation, manufacturers are getting inventive with their hardware formats...

Music Business

Notes From The Deadline

TV Music From The Inside

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The viewing public never get to see — or hear — the messy side of TV production. But that’s where the fun is.

Off The Record

Music & Recording Industry News

Recording budgets have been getting lower for some time. Are the technical standards we’ve come to expect from records being eroded too?

Studio File

Abbey Road Studios, London

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We take a look inside one of the most famous studios in the world.

Sound Advice

Q. How can I improve the quality of samples taken from a record deck?

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I just got hold of an old record deck and am having problems trying to record samples off some of my Dad's old vinyl. When I ...

Q. Should I include breath sounds when doing vocal pitch-correction?

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When I'm doing vocal pitch-correction, should I include breath sounds if I'm trying to get the sound to be realistic? I'm...

Q. What’s the best way to mount my speakers?

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I have a set of Atacama SE1000 speaker stands, but at one metre, they're just a tad too high. I've used Blu-Tack on my current...

Q. Why use upsampling within plug-ins?

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If high sample rates make no discernible difference when recording (which is effectively what Dan Lavry's much-quoted white...

Sex, Lies & Gaffer Tape

How To Become A Pro Live Sound Engineer

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Live-sound employment is now more competitive than ever, so how can you stand out from the crowd? We asked some of the leading teachers and employers in the industry for their advice.

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