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May 2003 Magazine Contents

Reviews

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    Alto Alto Q

    Five-band Parametric EQ

    Five bands of parametric EQ plus useful high-pass and low-pass filters, all for a bargain price.

    Reviews
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    AMG Simeon Dirt Bag

    Sample Library

    **** Dirt Bag by Simeon promises "hundreds of grungy, fresh and inspiring dance samples", and that's a fairly accurate description of what's on offer here...

    Reviews
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    BSP Europe Logic Keyboard

    Dedicated QWERTY Keyboard

    Make the most of Logic's keyboard shortcuts with this dedicated QWERTY keyboard.

    Reviews
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    Cobwebb Griff

    Pocket PC Sequencer

    As musicians rely on computers more and more, we look at an innovative system that isn't so much a studio in a box as a studio in your pocket.

    Reviews
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    Digidesign Pro Tools 6

    Audio + MIDI Recording Software

    The major audio and MIDI recording applications are slowly migrating to Mac OS X, and the latest to arrive is Digidesign's Pro Tools. The upgrade also introduces powerful new project management features, Groove Template functionality and a more powerful LE version.

    Reviews
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    Escape From The Planet Of The Breaks

    Sample Library

    5 stars ***** Two audio and two Acid-ready Wave CD-ROMs of drum loops and basic construction kits.

    Reviews
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    Focusrite ISA428

    Four-channel Mic Preamp

    Focusrite's new preamp offers variable input impedance and an optional multi-channel A-D converter board.

    Reviews
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    GEM Promega 3

    Performance Keyboard

    GEM have made all kinds of keyboards, from organs to home keyboards to synth workstations. Their latest incorporates physical-modelling technology, samples of famous instruments, effects, and plenty of real-time control options to form a 320-note polyphonic monster.

    Reviews
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    Homegrown Sounds

    Sample Library

    4 stars **** Homegrown Sounds have eight sample CD-ROMs available, each offered either in Soundfont format or as a combined NNXT, Halion, EXS24, Kontakt and Wave set.

    Reviews
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    Kurzweil KSP8

    Multi-channel Signal Processor

    Kurzweil bring flexible multi-channel effects hardware within the reach of many more home studio owners.

    Reviews
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    Lassence µVentury II

    Patchable Analogue Modular Synth System

    Belgian company Lassence are seeking to gain recognition as a small modular synth manufacturer with their new patchable µVentury II system. But there's plenty of competition in the homegrown analogue market these days. Does the µVentury II have what it takes?

    Reviews
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    Peterson VS1

    Virtual Strobe Tuner

    When 'close enough' is just not good enough, you need a strobe tuner. Too expensive? Too bulky? Not when it's this palm-sized 'virtual' strobe.

    Reviews
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    Radikal Technologies SAC 2.2

    Moving-fader Controller

    Moving-fader controllers for computer-based studios are big news at present, and Radikal's SAC 2.2 can be used with a wide range of software sequencers and instruments. Jack of all trades, or master of none? We find out...

    Reviews
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    Roland V-Synth

    Variphrase Synthesizer

    The V-Synth is a classic case of the whole being more than the sum of its parts. None of its impressive features are new — they've all been seen on previous Roland products — but nevertheless, it's the best new synth in years. We explain why...

    Reviews
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    Roland VS2400

    Digital Studio Workstation

    Roland offer a downsized version of their flagship VS2480, providing all of the most important facilities at a much lower price point.

    Reviews
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    SE Electronics Z5600

    Valve Microphone

    A nine-pattern valve mic at a surprisingly low price.

    Reviews
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    Sonic Foundry CD Architect v5

    Red Book CD-burning Application [Windows]

    It's been some time since Sonic Foundry's powerful and easy-to-use CD-burning application was updated, but this version 5 promises wider compatibility and many new features.

    Reviews
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    Tascam DSM7.1

    Digital Surround Monitor Controller

    A professional surround monitoring controller for a variety of speaker configurations up to 7.1

    Reviews
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    TC Works Native Bundle

    Dynamics, EQ, Reverb & Filter Plug-ins

    TC Works were in at the start of the software plug-in explosion back in 1998. We check out their latest update to the Native Bundle suite.

    Reviews
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    Tekniks Rizing Drum & Bass

    Sample Library

    4 **** Rizing Drum & Bass is an extensive collection of drum & bass samples, presented as audio...

    Reviews
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    Terratec Producer EWS Mic 2 & Mic 8

    Eight-channel Preamps & Audio Interfaces [PC]

    Terratec's new professional division are looking to make a splash with their rackmounting multi-channel A-D/D-A converters, which feature SPL-designed mic amps and close integration with their EWS 88MT soundcard.

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    Vienna Symphonic Library

    Orchestral Cube & Performance Set First Editions

    The Vienna Symphonic Library is more than just a sample library — it's a tool that aims to help you create true-sounding orchestral performances of your own music. But are we talking Berlin Philharmonic or Portsmouth Symphonia?

    Reviews
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    Yamaha MSP10 Studio

    Powered Monitors

    Yamaha's newest powered monitors deliver a solid and detailed performance, even at high playback levels.

    Reviews

Techniques

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    12-inch Powerbook & iBook

    Apple Notes

    Apple's new 12-inch Powerbook seems perfect for musicians who are unable to afford a Titanium, but need something more powerful than an iBook. However, with the 800MHz G3 iBook now available at a new low price, is the extra cost of a Powerbook justified in terms of its performance?

    Techniques
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    Automation Facilities In Pro Tools

    Pro Tools Tips & Techniques

    We begin a two-part tutorial explaining Pro Tools' powerful facilities for automating your mix.

    Techniques
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    Cubase's Logical Editor Window

    Steinberg Cubase Tips & Techniques

    The Logical Editor window is a powerful way to process MIDI data in Cubase, although it can often appear daunting to new users. What's more, it provides excuses for writers to dust off their Mr Spock quotes.

    Techniques
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    DP4 & MachFive

    MOTU Digital Performer Tips & Techniques

    We take a closer look at Digital Performer for OS X (which shall henceforth be known as DP4), and MachFive, plus the latest MAS plug-in releases.

    Techniques
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    Installing Memory

    PC Notes

    Installing more memory in your computer is a seemingly easy task, yet there can be so many issues to bear in mind that are often overlooked.

    Techniques
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    Is It Possible To Build A Silent PC?

    PC Musician

    As studio computers get faster, they grow noisier. Is it possible to build a machine that\'s not just quieter than a standard PC, but completely inaudible?

    Techniques
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    Logic: Avoiding Processing Delays

    Emagic Logic Tips & Techniques

    There are various places in a Logic-based studio where processing delays occur, and these can really mess with the groove of your tracks, so here we show you how to keep everything properly lined up. Also, there's the usual sackful of user tips and a clever way for v5 users to mimic one of the most useful features in v6.

    Techniques
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    Monitoring & Acoustic Treatment

    Studio Installation Workshop

    There's little use spending money on fancy mics, processors and plug-ins if your speakers are badly placed and your room's frequency response has more peaks than the Himalayas! So here we'll be looking at practical ways to improve your recording and listening environments.

    Techniques
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    Practical Bowed-string Synthesis

    Synth Secrets

    Having looked at the mechanics of how a bowed string instrument generates its sound last month, it's time to put these principles into practice, using nothing more complex than a miniKorg 700 monophonic synth...

    Techniques
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    Reliability Of Hard Drives; Innovative Video-related Products

    Cutting Edge

    We look at the reliability of hard drives and investigate some innovative video-related products from Sony, which could soon be commonplace in the audio world.

    Techniques
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    Sonar: ASIO Support & Dithering Advice

    Cakewalk Sonar Tips & Techniques

    We explore Sonar's new ASIO support, explain the advantages of recording dry while monitoring with effects, and shed some light on the knotty topic of dithering.

    Techniques
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    Studio SOS: Chesty Vocals & Mystery Buzzes

    Dave Stevens

    The SOS team visit reader Dave Stevens' home studio to sort out a chesty vocal sound, investigate a mystery digital buzz, and hand out some mastering tips.

    Techniques
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    The Future Of MIDI & Audio?

    mLAN & Yamaha's 01X Music Production Studio

    With the recent announcement of Yamaha's keenly priced 01X Music Production Studio, it looks as though mLAN, the Firewire-based protocol for multi-channel digital audio and MIDI, might be about to come of age. We take an early look at the new system.

    Techniques
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    The Musician's Guide To PCI Slots & Interrupts

    Hitting The Slot

    Which PCI slots you use for your expansion cards can make the difference between a music computer that runs flawlessly and one plagued by clicks, pops, crackles and interference.

    Techniques
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    Using Your Sequencer's Equalisers

    EQ Masterclass

    There are many choices to make when equalising within your sequencer. Which type of EQ is best? How should you set up the different bands? Which controls do you need? We provide some answers...

    Techniques

Sound Advice

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    Q & A

    Your Questions Answered

    The SOS staff and contributors answer another selection of your technical questions.

    Sound Advice

People

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