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Aardvark Direct Pro Q10 Computer Recording System
Aardvark's newest soundcard and breakout box are claimed to provide all the recording facilities PC owners could ever need, with excellent sound quality and at an affordable price. But how does the Q10 fare on the SOS test bench?
* Score = 5
Bass Station Monitors & Subwoofer
Can these unconventional plastic-bodied speakers possibly be suitable for studio work?
Clavia Nord Electro Virtual Electromechanical Keyboard
Electromechanical keyboards - electric organs, electric pianos, and so on - are popular at the moment, and there's no shortage of software plug-ins modelling them. Clavia's Nord Electro attempts exactly the same thing in hardware - but how successfully?
* Score = 5
Emagic EXSP24 & EVP73 VST Instruments For Mac & PC
EXS24 and EVP88, two of Emagic's dedicated plug-ins for Logic, are now available in scaled-down form for VST-compatible sequencers. But what has been lost in order to make the instruments work as VST plug-ins?
Emagic Logic Audio v5 & Logic Control MIDI + Audio Sequencer & Hardware Control Surface
An exclusive first look at Emagic's new Logic Control hardware control surface, and the eagerly awaited Version 5 of Logic - a powerful combination that takes the system to a new level of functionality
Joemeek TwinQ Dual Recording Channel
Joemeek's new dual recording channel provides an innovative current-sensing preamp, optical compression and three-band equalisation, as well as the option to fit an onboard stereo A-D converter.
* Score = 2
Digital Recording Studio
Korg's new pocket-sized multitracker gives you everything you need to record impressive demos on the road, and also lets you transfer the tracks to a computer via USB for backup and archiving.
* Score = 4
Miditech Midicontrol MIDI Keyboard Controller
Miditech's new 49-key take on the simple MIDI keyboard controller adds a panel of assignable knobs for even more control potential - and all for well under £200.
Native Instruments Absynth Stand-alone/Plug-in Software Synth For Mac
Released last year as a web-only download from Rhizomatic, the ground-breaking Absynth is now part of Native Instruments' product line, and can be used as a VST instrument plug-in.
Novation A-Station Polyphonic Virtual Analogue Synthesizer
Novation's new A-Station seeks to combine the compact styling of their BassStation Rack synths with some of the spec of the prestigious Supernova and Nova - and all for £399! Is it an inspired bit of cross-breeding, or a misbegotten mongrel?
A Russian ribbon mic brings this classic technology to a new low price point.
The Rise And Fall Of Rocky Mount Instruments (Retro) Gordon Reid
The keyboard instruments created by American manufacturer RMI may be deeply obscure now, but without them, '70s progressive rock could have a very different sonic signature.
TC Works Spark FX Machine SE Mac VST Wrapper Utility
TC Works' neat Mac utility allows you to turn VST plug-ins into sophisticated multi-effects combinations.
Dbx Mini Pre / Mastering Engineer's Handbook
Appraisals of Dbx's Mini Pre valve-based mic preamp, and The Mastering Engineer's Handbook.
TC Electronic G Major Guitar Effects Processor
The effects engine of the feted G Force at half the price! What more could you want? TC Electronic's new G Major guitar multi-effects processor sets out to redefine the price/performance ratio.
People + Opinion
BT revitalised the sound of boy band N'Sync, composed some of the most radical soundtracks to appear in mainstream films, and has a good claim to have invented trance. And he still finds time to talk to SOS...
BeOS is arguably the most promising independent multimedia OS of recent years - but, sadly, innovation and quality have not been enough to guarantee its future...
Musician & Producer
The 'producers' producer', the 'guitarists' guitarist': Jay Graydon is back, with a new album and a renewed hunger for success. Always the consummate studio craftsman, when he talks technique, it's worth listening...
Eddy Robinson talks about bringing MIDI into the 21st century
Much effort is currently being invested in establishing new digital audio interface standards for the future - but shouldn't we also be thinking about bringing MIDI into the 21st century?
Richard Stannard - Julian Gallagher - Ash Howes: Biffco Productions
In recent years, Dublin has become one of Europe's hottest centres for pop production, and Biffco Productions are one of the top hitmaking teams who've made their home there.
The useful range of Atari software from Cadenza includes the Web Wizard web site creation tool, and is now free.
Digidesign (Avid) Pro Tools Tips & Techniques
How would you configure your PT system to cope with the practicalities of traditional band recording?
Steinberg Cubase Tips & Techniques
This month, we explain how to eliminate phase problems in Cubase's Audio Editor, and round up some interesting new plug-ins.
Emu ESI Samplers Masterclass
The sheer power of Emu's three ESI samplers has endeared them to many home musicians on a budget. However, it can be tricky to get the most out of these machines, so here are some power-user tips to help you.
Shareware can be just as innovative and feature-packed as its fully commercial equivalent — take FXpansion's ambitious DR-008 sampled/synthesized drum machine, for example...
The audio side of OS X receives a big boost with the release of the first major update, as does Islington's MacExpo, as Apple themselves decide to attend their first UK show for several years.
There's a step-by-step guide to creating Groove Templates this month, plus the usual collection of handy tips, including some pointers on making the most of Aliases.
MIDI Automation Features
Performer Notes turns its attention to DP3's MIDI automation features. Plus all the latest MOTU-related news and tips.
Playback | Readers' Music Reviewed
Relative Strangers * Marcus Dyer * Staff Only * Simon Hester * Mark Izzard * Bushel Men * The Psychedelic Kings Of Rock 'n' Roll * Gadgeteers
Resource Management: Making The Most Of PC System Resources
Even when you've installed the fastest processor you can afford and masses of RAM, your PC can still end up being slow and unresponsive. Here's what you can do about it.
Mac Processor Upgrades Tested For Musical Applications
Upgrading your ageing Mac's processor to extend its useful working life is an appealing concept, and there are plenty of processor upgrades on the market. But what effect do they really have on musical and recording applications? We tested eight of them to find out...
Practical Percussion Synthesis
Building on the theory of what makes up the sound of timpani, as explained last month, this month's Synth Secrets reveals how to synthesize realistic kettle drums using a Korg MS20 and a Yamaha DX7.
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The Secrets Of Warmth & Air
You don't need a wand to conjure up sonic magic, just a few well-chosen recording tools.
Surround Sound Explained - Part 5
There's a lot more to 5.1 surround sound production than stereo with extra channels - new, bewildering terms and concepts abound. This month, we explain Metadata, Upmixing, Downmixing, and look at what that centre speaker actually does...
Frequently Asked Questions
Common questions about using computers in the studio answered.
Could I create my own multi-band compression? * How can I archive my old samples? * Can a computer recording setup meet my requirements?
Could I create my own multi-band compression? * How can I archive my old samples? * Can a computer recording setup meet my requirements? * *