Archive for the ‘condenser mics’ Category

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Rode Podcaser USB Microphone & Podcasting.. What is it?

June 19, 2009

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Broadcast Quality USB Microphone
Seamless integration was the idea, and it was obtained by creating a studio dynamic microphone with unparalleled A/D converters, so that the microphone can be plugged into any computer with no in/out boxes, no expensive computer pre-amps, just a USB cable.

The Podcaster offers an end-address configuration, the clarity of RØDE’s tailored-for-voice frequency response, an ‘ON’ L.E.D, a direct headphone amp, and of course very low self noise.

The Podcaster opens up possibilities for anyone who records audio – from podcasters, journalists and students to business people adding audio files to websites and multimedia presentations.

* Broadcast Sound Quality
* 28mm dynamic capsule
* 18-bit resolution, 8-48kHz sampling
* Windows and Mac compatible
* Powered by USB bus
* Internal capsule shock mounting
* 3.5mm stereo headphone output with volume control built-in to body
* Ideal for voice recognition software

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Podcasting is creating your own content (mp3 or video for example ) with intent for users to download using one of several programs that have been created to retrieve your audio file automatically, like iTunes or Google reader etc.

Podcasting is simply distributing audio content using RSS. The process is suprisingly simple, and by making audio content available using RSS, podcasters give listeners more control over what they listen to and when. Also, many podcasts are available for syndication, which increases a broadcasters exposure.

For more infomation on RSS check our article here

Here is a breakdown of what you will need and need to know to be able to Podcast:

Skills you may need….

1. How to record your audio and save it to an .mp3 file. (Video is of course also allowed)

2. How to upload the .mp3 file to a website or hosting service

3. How to upload the RSS “feed”  burner service.

After creating your material using an audio editing program of your choice you’ll need somwhere to store it online. if you have a sever upload it here, if your lost at the word ’server’ …get a blog like ‘WordPress’ or ‘Blogger’.

The majority of things you will have to master in order to Podcast are online and if your new to Blogging, Podcasting is an ideal  reason to start. Your ‘Blog’ will allow to to upload you MP3’s and store them within your Blog enabling users to visit your site and download or even better ‘Subscribe’!

There are many different ways to create/ store your Podcasts, you just need to find the server and Feedburner that works for you, the videos here all do things a little different so dont worry if you do things different also!

An RSS feed is the final step in transforming your collection of audio/video files into a bona fide podcast! With FeedBurner’s SmartCast service, you can use any blogging tool that creates a feed to publish your podcast. Here’s how it works: If your blog post contains a link (<a href=””></a>) to an audio/video file, we’ll convert it to an RSS enclosure — a special link found only in your feed — that programs like iPodder, iTunes and NetNewsWire recognize. Google Reader and several other online readers also recognize enclosures and offer a playback link or audio control when they encounter them.

Equipment you may need…

1. Audio Editing Software

2. A Microphone

3. A Sound Card

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Danny Elfman (The Simpsons theme) Discusses Scoring Terminator Salvation with Omnisphere!

June 17, 2009

Spectrasonics Omnisphere is the first virtual instrument to be based on the Spectrasonics STEAM Engine, the company’s newly developed core technology.

The Omnisphere development team will be revealing the new instrument to the public through a series of video episodes from the Spectrasonics website showing features and behind the scenes details on how the instrument and its unique sounds have been created.

“This is truly an Epic project,” said Eric Persing, Founder and Creative Director of Spectrasonics. “We have been working for many, many years; sampling unique sounds, experimenting, specifying the synthesis features and building the STEAM Engine to run it all. It’s been a very exciting process involving our team of software engineers, sound designers, musicians, and graphic artists from all over the world. We’ve been very deliberate in making it easy to use, and yet extremely powerful. Omnisphere is our new flagship synthesizer, and points the way to all our future virtual instruments. We are thrilled to offer a new product that will new have a host of expansion capabilities in the future.”

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With the fourth installment of the sci-fi series Terminator, composer Danny Elfman weighs in with a gripping film score that features Spectrasonics’ Omnisphere virtual instrument on many of the music cues – Elfman often used two Omnispheres for up to sixteen possible sounds at once.

Danny Elfman told us, “I would have to say that discovering Omnisphere this last year has been one of my greatest pleasures. I’m always looking for new sounds and new plug-ins to run with my sequencer, which is Digital Performer. Using Omnisphere along with DP is fantastic for several reasons. First, there’s a great core library to choose from and Eric Persing has, along with all the Spectrasonics sound designers, done a really vast and thorough job. It’s great, finally, to have sounds organized so well with the many ‘tags’ that they provide. Secondly, it’s really easy to program your own custom sounds. My first day, I already had several dozen edits that I really liked and put them in a separate ‘Favorites’ folder. The Omnisphere browser system made it super easy to find them as I needed them.”

“When I began Terminator Salvation I knew I was going to do a lot of synth work and so I began with a bank of their sounds and a slew of my own variations that I thought I could use, and use them I did. On almost every cue,” continued Elfman.

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“More specifically, I found myself diving into the ‘Psychoacoustic‘ sounds a lot, frequently in the ‘Experimental’ and ‘Film’ genres. I also found myself often going to the ‘Distortion’ category, also in the ‘Experimental’ and ‘High-Energy’ genres.”

THE SOUNDS
“An example of what I did would be taking the ‘Buzzord’ sounds, which I had half a dozen custom variations that I came up with. Several variations on the ‘Big Boomer Trash Strike’ from the ‘Impacts and Hits’ category was used a lot. From the ‘Pads + Strings’ group I went to the ‘Sweeping Pads’ and ‘Quirky’ tags a lot. The patch ‘Secondary Strike’ from the ‘SFX and Noise’ category and ‘Sound FX’ genre was very useful and like the others, I had a number of variations on it. Finally the ‘Hybrid Organic’ category gave me sounds that I would use both as hits and pads and sometimes a cross between them,” Elfman explained.

“I can’t say enough good things about Omnisphere,” said Elfman. “I love doing my own synth editing, but I’m no programming genius and I have very little patience for new plug-ins that require steep leaning curves to start really ‘working’ the patches I like. Omnisphere was really easy and intuitive. And for each file in DP, I’d make all the edits and variations on my sounds as was required, and having them attached to that file for later use made my life easier.”

“My compliments to Eric and all the folks at Spectrasonics.  Good work.”

Daniel Robert “Danny” Elfman (born May 29, 1953) is a Grammy Award-winning American musician, best known for composing music for television and movies, and leading the rock band Oingo Boingo as singer/songwriter from 1976 until its breakup in 1995. He is a frequent collaborator with long-time friend Tim Burton, and has scored all but two of his films. He was nominated for four Academy Awards and won a Grammy Award for Tim Burton’s Batman and an Emmy Award for his Desperate Housewives theme. Elfman also wrote the theme for the video game Fable. He is also famous for creating The Simpsons main title theme, and his role as Jack Skellington’s singing voice in The Nightmare Before Christmas.

Be sure to check out Danny’s fine score for the film!

Source: http://www.spectrasonics.net/

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Red Bull Music Academy 2010 , Applications open in May ’09

May 6, 2009

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London has been announced as the next venue for the Red Bull Music Academy (RBMA), a two-week boot camp for budding musicians, producers and DJs.

The application process will begin on May 11th and will remain open until the 27th July 2009. The Academy is inviting people to apply for one of two fortnight-long ‘terms’ which will take place in succession in February and March 2010.

Every year, the RBMA attracts attendees and guests from right across the globe, and numerous high-profile artists are drafted in to give lectures and impart invaluable advice to the students.

For further information and to apply to enrol, head to http://www.redbullmusicacademy.com.

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Shure announce new mics! Sm and Pg range expands

May 6, 2009


The SM27 is a large-diaphragm condenser with a cardioid polar pattern that Shure say will work well on a range of sources, and is especially fast when responding to transients. The SM137, a small-diaphragm condenser, is designed for use on instruments, and has a 15dB pad that, when engaged, enables the mic to handle up to 154dB SPL — they even say it’s suitable for use on guitar amps.

Also new is the Super 55 Deluxe, a revamped version of the much-loved and instantly recognisable 55-series dynamic microphone. This latest model has the same die-cast casing, but features a capsule with a supercardioid polar response, instead of cardioid. Also different on the Super 55 Deluxe is the colour of the interior foam windshield — it’s a vibrant electric blue, not grey — and the switch panel on the bottom casing has been removed and substituted for a logo-emblazoned blanking plate. At the time of writing, the price was still to be confirmed.

Added to the Performance Gear (PG) range are the PG27 and PG42, which are both large-diaphragm, side-address condenser mics. The PG27 (£147) has what Shure describe as a flat, neutral response that they say is suitable for use on a wide variety of sources, whereas the PG42 (£195) is designed primarily for recording vocals, and is tuned accordingly, “to reproduce the subtle nuances of lead vocals”. Unusually, especially for Shure, the PG27 and PG42 are both available in ‘USB’ versions, featuring on-board preamplification, A-D/D-A conversion and USB connectivity, so they can be plugged directly into a computer without the need for an audio interface or mic preamp. They also have a headphones jack complete with level and monitor/direct mix control.

In a related product announcement (yes, there’s more!), Shure have made available a device that provides this XLR-to-USB conversion technology in stand-alone form. The cleverly named X2U has an XLR input and a USB output, permitting any mic, including those that require phantom power, to be plugged directly into your Mac or PC. As with the USB mics, the X2U has D-A conversion on-board linked to a headphones feed. It costs £104.

Finally, Shure have announced that they’ve acquired one of the most reputable names in the world of ribbon mics. As of April 2009, Shure own “all intellectual property, microphone process equipment, product designs, and other important assets related to the Crowley & Tripp line” and will move production to their factories in Illinois, USA. They will continue to use Roswellite, the material used in the ribbon elements of various Crowley & Tripp mics, and will also assume responsibility for the “ongoing service and support for existing owners of Crowley & Tripp ribbon microphone products”.

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Roland Wants Videos of Junos New and Old; A Look Back at the Juno Line

April 22, 2009

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JUNO-106, as captured by cicciostoky

Roland is holding a YouTube video contest to get people to show off their JUNO keyboard synths. They’re not just talking the currently-available Roland keyboards that wear the JUNO badge, but the classic models going back to 1982.

“How Do You JUNO?” Video Contest [Roland US]

I like to disclose our partnerships upfront, so in the interest of disclosure: Roland US is currently promoting this campaign on CDM – thanks, Roland, for supporting the site. I can also tell you that personally, selfishly, I’d really love to see some great JUNO videos up on that YouTube channel, and that I suspect the take of some of you readers will be different. Also in the interest of really full disclosure – yeah, okay, I’m partial to the vintage JUNO. That’s my own personal bias. But I’m eager to see videos of whatever you’ve got. (Also, the JUNO-G is one of my favorite mainstream keyboards at the moment, for reasons I talk about below – it has the advantages of a workstation, like the ability to load custom waveforms and do onboard audio recording and sequencing, but without some of the bells and whistles a lot of us don’t want.)

JUNO History

I think it’s worth reviewing the history of the JUNO line. What it’s meant to be a “JUNO” has changed pretty radically over the years; a JUNO-D and a JUNO-6 might not recognize each other. It reflects some of the changing tastes and technologies in the industry. Sometimes that represents forward progress — hooray, MIDI and patch memory! But sometimes something is lost. The analog original is something special, and even Roland wound up bringing back retro-styled front-panel editing, missing on the JUNO-D, to the JUNO-G and JUNO-STAGE. It’s not about nostalgia: it’s about making something musically productive. In some ways, that’s brought us full circle.

Mirror, mirror: JUNO-6, photographed by p caire.

1982: JUNO-6, JUNO-60. The original JUNO was a six-voice polyphonic analog synth. The distinctive, punchy analog sound was so beloved, it even inspired a meticulous emulation on a dedicated Linux machine. It also introduced Roland’s friendly-looking panel layout approach with big, clear labels and a spacious setup – something to which Roland themselves have recently returned. The JUNO-60 added patch memory storage. No MIDI, although there Roland later produced add-on hardware for MIDI control.

Roland generations: the JX-8P was the successor to the first commercially-available Roland MIDI synth (JX-3P). You can also see how the JUNO-60 compares to the size of the JUNO-106 at top. Photo: Soundingblue.

1984: JUNO-106. The 106 has a special place in history, not only a favorite of the 80s but ever since – it’s got six analog voices as on the original JUNO, plus one digitally-controlled oscillator per voice, but adds MIDI control. It sounds great and it’s dead-simple to use. It’s also a nice choice if you’re looking to pick up an 80s keyboard as it’s a good value today as it was when released. In a world in which “vintage” often translates to elite and expensive, the JUNO-106 is one of the great populist keyboards of all time. Note that if you are looking to pick up a used 106, our friend James Grahame from Retro Thing notes tells me the voice chips are starting to die. Buyer beware: owning a used synth can be like owning a used car.

The Roland Jupiter, not the JUNO, went down in history as one of the two first synths to connect in public via MIDI – at winter NAMM, January 1983, connected to a Sequential Prophet-600. But the JUNO-106 was still one of the Roland products that helped popularize MIDI.

Digital oscillators + analog filters. Odd that we don’t have more synths like that today, in fact. Photo: ALERT ALERT.

1986: Alpha JUNO 1. The Alphas are smaller, and eschew physical controls for LED and minimalist button selections – there was something about the mid-1980s that did that to synth design. But you can add on a PG-300 controller for additional controls, the Alphas are MIDI-friendly, and not hard to find these days. They maintained the distinctive JUNO sound and have been a favorite in the techno scene ever since.

Alpha JUNO 2. The Alpha 2 hits a nice sweet spot as a controller: aftertouch, 61-note keyboard. That could make it a decent choice on your keyboard rack even today.

The New JUNO Models

2005: JUNO-D. The JUNO-D is a budget wavetable synth, and as such, really the odd man out here. The connection to the original JUNO is presumably that it’s a friendly synth with some favorite sounds, and it does support a computer editor. There are also front-panel envelope controls. But it’s the more recent JUNO models that have brought back more of the original spirit of the JUNO. The JUNO-D has “JUNO” printed on it, but otherwise, while a solid entry-level keyboard, it lacks a lot of the features that make the other modern JUNO line appealing.

JUNO-G, at home in the studio. Photo: Claudio Matsuoka.

2007: JUNO-G. The JUNO-G is quite a lot more interesting if you’re interested in doing some real programming and live performance. It’s a workstation, though without some of the arranger features that are superfluous to many of us. You get the Fantom-X synth processor, but with easily-accessible front-panel editing controls and a layout inspired by the original JUNO. There are also some nice gigging features, like onboard audio/MIDI recording, 16-part MIDI sequencing, and a slot for flash memory. It’s also got additional controller features, like a D-Beam, plus USB connectivity. I reviewed the JUNO-G in summer 2007 for Keyboard Magazine. I was especially attracted to the ability to use your own waveforms as the basis of sounds, and to the front-panel editing and sequencing/recording features.

Version 2 of the JUNO-G recently added waveform editing.

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2008: JUNO-STAGE. I quite liked that the JUNO-G is light, but the JUNO-STAGE gives you a 76-note, semi-weighted keyboard and additional performance controls. It gets rid of some of the sequencing and workstation features of the JUNO-G, but if you want to do all your sequencing on computer, that may not matter. The idea of the STAGE is really focused on live performance controls. Like the JUNO-G, it’s the soul of a Fantom-X in a different package, but that package is more narrowly-focused in a way that can appeal for live playing.

Modern JUNO Portal at Roland

Source: http://createdigitalmusic.com

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Upgrade any Microphone! Affordable XLR to USB Converter from Blue

March 11, 2009

Blue Icicle

The Icicle is Blue’s new stylish USB converter and mic preamp combo that allows you to connect any XLR microphone directly into your computer via USB! The Icicle features a studio quality microphone preamp, 48V phantom power, fully balanced low noise front end, analog gain control, and driverless operation.

THE BLUE ICICLE MICROPHONE IS HERE AT DOLPHIN!

Setup is a snap! The Blue Icicle works with both dynamic and condenser microphones, providing high quality and hassle-free connectivity with Mac or PC. Whether you’re using a microphone for digital recording, podcasting, voice messaging, or voice recognition applications, the Icicle is the quick and easy way to get connected.

Hook UP Diagram

Blue Icicle XLR to USB Mic Converter/Mic Preamp Specifications:

  • Sample/Word: 44.1K/16 bit
  • Power Consumption: 200mA (from USB bus)

System Requirements:

  • Macintosh: Mac OSX with USB 1.0 or 2.0 and 64 MB RAM (minimum)
  • Windows: XP Home Edition, Professional or Vista with USB 1.0 or 2.0 and 64 MB RAM (minimum)

Blue Icicle XLR to USB Mic Converter/Mic Preamp Features:

  • Works with Mac or PC computers
  • No Special Drivers Required
  • Studio Quality USB microphone preamp
  • Supplies 48V phantom power for . condenser microphones
  • Phantom power active light
  • Fully balanced low noise analog front end
  • Analog gain control
  • Blue Icicle XLR to USB Mic Converter/Mic Preamp Includes:

Includes 6-ft USB cable

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Line 6 Backtrack – Instant portable recorder/ instant reply for guitar

February 20, 2009

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In a an already very busy market Line 6 have took the plunge into portable recording devices. So lets take a look at what features this has to offer.

“BackTrack™ provides total inspiration control anywhere you play music or feel inspired, including at home, in the studio, at soundcheck and at rehearsal.”

At home, BackTrack offers the best ways to capture and organize all your musical ideas.

* Like a creative safety net, BackTrack makes sure all your ideas are captured
* “Instant replay” anything you just played by pressing “Play”
* Separate your best ideas from the rest by pressing “Mark”

In the studio, BackTrack gives you a head-start turning your inspirations into complete songs.

* Drag the better-than-CD-quality .WAV files right into your recording software
* The clean and pristine audio offers total plug-in processing flexibility
* Packed with your ideas, BackTrack is your portable idea vault

At soundcheck, BackTrack redefines the entire experience.

* Adjust your tone hands-free while BackTrack loops a song or riff
* Walk around the venue and check your tone while BackTrack does the playing for you
* Capture the energy of your live show and drag the high-quality audio to your DAW

At rehearsal, there’s no end to what BackTrack can do for you and your band.

* BackTrack + Mic records your whole band with stunning clarity
* Capture a direct signal perfect for dragging to your DAW by putting BackTrack in-line between your guitar and your amp
* Capture your guitar tone by putting BackTrack in-line after your amp or effects

I would personally would love to see this device fitted in the future with an onboard modelling chip like that of the pocket POD, Im almost suprised its notalready  featured here. But you still get a lot of amazing features for your buck.

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