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Arturia's latest addition to their virtual instrument line-up is Brass, a software instrument for the modelling of — you've guessed it — brass. The plug-in is the combination of serious research into brass instruments at IRCAM, France's unique music and acoustics research facility, and Arturia's quest to bring the wonders of brass to the computer-based masses. This month, Arbiter, Arturia's UK distributor, have kindly agreed to give away full copies of Brass, worth £200 each, to five lucky Sound On Sound readers.
When is an iMac not an iMac, but still an iMac? When it's a new model featuring an Intel processor. We test Apple's first Intel-based Mac and see what the future holds for Mac musicians and audio engineers.
The Xenyx range of analogue mixers offers improved sound quality and USB interfacing with computers, plus the extremely competitive pricing we've come to expect from Behringer.
Analogue-style Synth & Plug-in Bundle For Pro Tools
What could be more tempting than a sweet-sounding virtual analogue synth? How about that same synth bundled with a bunch of high-quality plug-ins targeted at music production?
Orchestral Expansion Library [Mac OS X/Win XP]
East West and Quantum Leap's Symphonic Orchestra was one of the largest orchestral libraries ever released, at 19 DVDs for the full edition. However, it still wasn't enough for some people — so East West have released this 18-disc expander set...
A modern take on the vintage Neve preamp sound.
Gear Reviews, Tips and Techniques
• Can a Power Soak really give you 'loud tone' without volume?
• ESI Pro Jam Mate UG1 USB electric guitar
• Hughes & Kettner Switchblade
• Guitar pedal news... •
If you're still using pre-MIDI synths, the chances are you'll already be using a Kenton converter to interface them with your more modern MIDI gear. We check out this upgrade to the faithful Pro Solo...
A-D/D-A Converter & Interface [Mac OS X/Windows]
With even the cheapest soundcards now offering 24-bit, 192kHz recording, is it still worth investing in high-end converters? Lynx certainly think so...
Semi-weighted USB MIDI Controller Keyboard
Controller keyboards are fitting ever more control facilities into progressively smaller units costing less and less. Is the Axiom 25 M-Audio's best deal yet?
• Sony Sound Series: Trance NRG2
• Big Fish Elements: Traditional Jazz
• Big Fish Raging Guitars
USB Condenser Microphone
If you want the simplest possible computer recording setup, it doesn't come much more straightforward than this: a mic that plugs straight into your Mac or PC's USB ports.
These two new SE models may come in at an entry-level price, but they are both highly capable capacitor mics, each with a distinctly different sound character.
Stand-mounted Acoustic Absorber
SE Electronics' portable screen is designed to turn any room into a vocal booth.
Hardware MIDI Sequencer
If you thought the days of hardware sequencing were past, think again — Sequentix's P3 is a tremendously flexible MIDI sequencer whose power is concealed beneath a cool retro exterior. We step to it...
PC Audio Editing & Mastering Suite
Wavelab's latest tricks include a revolutionary Spectrum Editor, which allows you to identify problem areas in your material visually before applying extremely precise restoration processes.
DSP Card & Plug-in for Yamaha Mixers & Multitrackers
Waves are tempting owners of Yamaha digital hardware with an updated DSP board and a new selection of additional plug-in processors.
These new monitors from Yamaha add some low-end welly to the sound of the legendary NS10.
Looking to create a more affordable keyboard version of their Motif range of workstations, Yamaha have pared back the spec of the Motif ES a little — though not much — to create the M06 and M08.
Building on their modular software instruments, Yellow Tools' Independence is a combined software sampler and workstation synth. But it faces a lot of competition. What makes it stand out from the rest?
Feedback Destroyer Pro
Given its more than respectable range of facilities and 24-bit/96kHz operation, the low price of this feedback processor seems far too good to be true. We find out whether it is...
Wireless audio system for PA
How many times have you wished you had a magic wireless link from your desk to the stage? At some venues it can be a real problem trying to find a route for speaker cables that does not cross public access areas or look unsightly, but now the Liberty system could provide the answer...
Passive PA speakers
The extremely portable size and shape of these neat little PA speakers make them suitable for a range of more unusual sound-reinforcement jobs, plus those awkward gigs in tiny venues.
UHF wireless microphone system
The radio microphone marketplace is becoming a busy place these days, but it's always interesting to look at a new system that aims to provide good-quality performance while being very straightforward to set up and operate.
A dedicated headphone delay might seem like a bit of a luxury, but it could make life a lot more pleasant for the working engineer.
16-channel live sound mixer
This compact desk benefits from built-in effects, sturdy construction and low noise. Does it measure up to the Mackie name?
Active PA speakers
Although Renkus-Heinz is a well-known name in high-end PA components, it's not one often seen on the stages of more modest gig venues — but that may be set to change with the arrival of the new CF/CFX series.
Guitar preamps that use digital modelling technology have found their way into vast numbers of studios. But do they have a useful place on stage, and what do you need to know if you want to use one live?
The benefits explained
If you're under the impression that Class-D amplifiers are just 'three letters worse' than Class-A ones, think again: Class-D technology is making an increasing impact on the live sound world by offering more power with less weight than ever before. We find out how and why...
People + Opinion
Paul White's Leader
Will the day come when we will see our synths and processors as external rackmount gear?
When British traditional music got a dose of rock & roll excitement, it was an American who sat in the producer's chair. Oh, and Joe Boyd also discovered a little-known band called the Pink Floyd...
The Current State Of Affairs
This month, Roger tackles some questions from his bulging virtual postbag...
This month, we present a sobering tale of two synthesizers...
Digidesign (Avid) Pro Tools Tips & Techniques
One of the best features of TDM-based Pro Tools systems is the negligible latency, or input-to-output delay, while recording. So what is the best way to deal with this problem if you have only an LE system?
Steinberg Cubase Tips & Techniques
When Cubase VST became Cubase SX, one of the big improvements was a better automation system for audio-based tracks and channels. This month, we show you how to make the most of this newer system.
Producers: Clive Langer, Alan Winstanley
Producers Clive Langer and Alan Winstanley helped to make Madness one of the most successful British bands of the '80s. Find out how they worked their magic on this 1982 classic pop track...
Digital Performer Notes & Techniques
Your next project might be a four-track demo or a 100-track surround mix for cinema. Either way, at some stage you're going to have to mix it — but with DP on your side, that doesn't need to be a headache.
How To Cope With Revisions
What happens when the Director whose work you're scoring isn't satisfied, or demands changes due to events beyond your control? We find out, and also look at writing music for film trailers.
+ Audio Files
An ambient dance track gets the Mix Rescue treatment this time, as SOS reader Mark Edwards finds out that less is definitely more.
Ableton Live Notes & Techniques
They say one step in planning saves two in execution — and that certainly applies to doing a performance with Ableton Live sequencer...
This action-packed PC Notes gives advice on preserving your lovingly crafted presets when you upgrade audio software, offers ideas on keeping your dongles safe and brings you the usual haul of handy hints and tips.
Reason Notes & Techniques
Whether you need electronic beats or realistic acoustic drums, Reason is one of the quickest and easiest tools around for creating varied drum tracks.
News of Apple allowing Mac users to run Windows on their Macs might sound like an April Fool — but it turned out to be anything but a hoax. This month we investigate the possibilities of running Windows on an Intel-based Mac and discuss why you might want to.
The Small Form Factor (SFF) PC is a useful halfway house between the flexible but bulky desktop PC and the very portable but expensive and not easily upgradeable laptop. But how well does the SFF PC fit the bill for musicians? We find out.
Paul 'Spyder' Fitzpatrick
This month the team travel to Wales to mix vocals, acoustic guitars, and a troublesome hurdy-gurdy!
Logic Notes & Techniques
Markers have always been available in Logic, but the new Global Tracks feature (introduced in version 7) makes them much easier to use and manipulate than in earlier versions.
Sonar Notes & Techniques
If you never venture into Sonar's off-line DSP section, now could be the time to check it out, following Cakewalk's v5 revamp of these useful functions.
Techniques & Tips
Everyone knows how much a classy vocal sound can add to any recording, but achieving this in the studio can seem something of a black art, so this month we demystify the recording, processing, and mixing techniques required to produce professional results.