December 2007 In This Issue

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Competition

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Deadline: 2007-12-31

Prize kindly donated by Apple UK +44 (0) 800 039 1010 and New Technology Institute +44 (0)121 202 48000.

Reviews

Acoustics Accessories

Mini-reviews

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To accompany this month's DIY Studio Acoustics article, we look at four useful accessories.

Apple Main Stage & Soundtrack Pro 2

Live Performance & Video Soundtrack Editing Software

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Apples Logic Studio bundle certainly offers a great deal for very little money. Do the bundled live performance and soundtrack tools make it worth buying even if youre not a Logic user?

Cakewalk Sonar 7

Digital Audio Workstation Software For Windows

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How can you improve a MIDI + Audio sequencer thats already as comprehensive as Sonar? Cakewalk have added some impressive new plug-ins, but theyve also gone back to basics to take MIDI editing to new levels of flexibility.

CME VX8

MIDI Keyboard Controller

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The CME VX8 is a particularly ambitious keyboard controller, with an ambitiously low price tag. It's a balancing act — so can CME pull it off?

Direct Resolution Studio Plus

Audio PC

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The Direct Resolution Studio Plus is a high-performance, low-noise audio PC that enjoys a cheaper price tag than many of its competitors. Interested? Read on...

Effects

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TECHNIQUE

Guitar Re-amping

With the massive strides software has made in recent years, there are now more ways to...

Fostex MR16HDCD

Digital Multitrack Recorder

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Fostex's new recorder is the lowest-cost digital 16-track currently on the market. How have they made it so affordable?

KRK Exposé E8B

Active Studio Monitors

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KRK aim at the market for top-quality monitoring with these heavyweight new contenders.

Mackie Satellite

Firewire Audio Interface [Mac/PC]

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The Mackie Satellite is an audio interface with a unique two-piece design — but is it genius or gimmickry?

Native Instruments Guitar Rig 3

Amp Modelling Software & Controller

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Native Instruments have repackaged their powerhouse amp-modelling package with a new, stage-friendly interface, not to mention four new amps and a pile of vintage effects.

Playback

Readers’ Music Reviewed

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This month we review CDs by StrangeA, Ted McLoone, tRUEMAN, Nomadiqa, Simon Scardanelli, Michael Lindner and Column:Inches.

Plug-in Folder

Mini-reviews: PC VST

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• Musicrow PianoBoy • Bluenoise My Drumset

Presonus Firestudio

Firewire Audio Interface [Mac/PC]

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What does it take to make a Firewire audio interface stand out from the crowd these days? How about eight mic preamps, 26 channels of I/O at 24-bit/96kHz and some heavy-duty routing functionality...

Ribbon Mics On Test

Part 2 - The Results

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Last month we introduced the mics; this month we put them to the test. Find out which model is the best way of adding ribbon character to your studio.

Ribbon Mics: Audio Files

Part 2 - Hear For Yourself

Here are links to the audio files from December 2007's RIBBON MICROPHONES article, for those readers who buy the magazine from the newsagent and don't wish to type in all the long URLs.

Roland VG99

V-Guitar System

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The latest in Roland's pioneering VG range could qualify as the best guitar synth ever made.

Sample CDs On Test

Sample Library

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• Garritan Concert & Marching Band • Garritan Gofriller Solo Cello • Big Fish Audio Dread Roots Reggae • Soniccouture Synthi AKS

Sound Toys Native Effects

RTAS & Audio Units Plug-ins

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It's not often you encounter plug-ins that combine detailed emulations of analogue classics with a wealth of new tricks, but Sound Toys' Native Effects do just that.

Steinberg Nuendo 4

Digital Audio Workstation Software [Mac/PC]

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With impressive new automation features and free mixer routing, have Steinberg taken their flagship audio application to the top of the class?

People + Opinion

Lou Reed & Zeitkratzer

Metal Machine Music

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Classical interpretations of guitar music might not be new — but when the guitar music in question consists of 64 minutes of deafening feedback, it takes a lot of interpreting!

Sounding Off: Software Instruments

Mark Wherry

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Software instruments are great, if you can set them up...

The Ears Have It

Paul White's Leader

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What is the most important skill you need to develop to make good recordings?

Technique

Bit Transparency

PC Notes

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Your digital audio's passage through the PC may not leave it unscathed: even if you avoid Windows performing sample-rate conversion behind the scenes, other factors can compromise 'bit transparency'. We explain.

CLASSIC TRACKS: Stevie Wonder 'Pastime Paradise'

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Epic in every sense of the word — unning to 21 songs, involving more than 120 musicians and taking almost two years to complete — Stevie Wonder's Songs In The Key Of Life was in many ways the high-point of an already illustrious career. This is the story of how it was created.

GarageBand

Apple Notes

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GarageBand is perhaps the most successful entry-level music software ever created, and this month we take a closer look at the latest version supplied with iLife '08.

Getting The Most From Your Pro Tools System

Avid Pro Tools Tips & Techniques

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We've all been in that situation — desperate to add one more plug-in, but with a computer on the verge of collapse. We explain how to wring that last ounce of power from your Pro Tools rig.

Integrating Outboard Hardware With Logic

Logic Notes & Techniques

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Many Logic users have external hardware processors and effects units, which can easily be used inside projects. Read on to find out how...

Mix Rescue

Solivern

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The rescue mission this month is to bring coherence and polish to the disparate elements of Solivern's interesting instrumental composition...

Mix Rescue: Audio Files

Hear For Yourself

Here are links to the audio files from December 2007's MIX RESCUE article, for those readers who buy the magazine from the newsagent and don't wish to type in all the long URLs.

Room For Improvement

A Guide To DIY Studio Acoustics

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Are the acoustics of your studio letting down your music? Improving the sound of your room needn't cost much and pays dividends in better recordings and more transportable mixes. Read on for the SOS guide.

Room For Improvement: Audio file

A Guide To DIY Studio Acoustics

To accompany this month's Acoustics article, open this page and download this MP3 of a Bass Staircase test sequence, then audition it on your own monitors.

Secrets Of The Mix Engineers: Manny Marroquin

Inside Track: Kanye West's 'Stronger'

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Eleven mix engineers tried their hand at Kanye Wests Stronger before Manny Marroquin finally turned it into a record. He was rewarded with one of the biggest hits of 2007.

Solving MIDI Timing Problems

Steinberg Cubase Tips & Techniques

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Early notes, late notes, stacked notes... There's a range of problems that could stem from MIDI timing issues — but fortunately we have solutions to offer.

Studio SOS

Michael Tefula

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This month we look at monitor placement, tighten stereo imaging and tackle what was probably the world's smallest vocal booth!

The Thor Synthesizer In Reason 4

Reason Notes & Techniques

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There's a lot to get to grips with in the latest version of Reason — but we begin by looking at the basics of the giant new semi-modular synthesizer, Thor.

Using Digital Performer With Reason

Digital Performer Notes & Techniques

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Propellerhead's Reason software studio offers some great instruments and makes a good partner for DP - but there are various things to be aware of if you want to create the most hassle-free partnership. Our in-depth look at using the two applications together explains it all.

Music Business

Cash Flow

How Your Music Earns You Money

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With album sales in free fall, alternative revenue streams are becoming ever-more important. We explain where todays songwriters can look to earn money from their music.

Sound Advice

Q. Which mics should I buy as drum overheads?

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I'm looking at buying a pair of drum overheads as an upgrade to the AKG C451s I've had for a couple of years. I'll probably...

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