Archive for the ‘Home Studio’ Category

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Soundcard Buying Guide

October 21, 2009

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We understand that the Soundcard market can be a little daunting if you don’t know exactly what you are looking for. With various connection methods such as USB, Firewire, and PCI it is difficult to find the one for you.

This guide should give you an overview of the world of soundcards and hopefully help you someway in choosing the right one for you. Please remember that you can always call us if you ever need help or advice on 0844 815 0888.

The difference you find with soundcards to mixers is that where as a mixer will just take an analogue signal and keep it as analogue. A soundcard converts the analogue to digital. The price of soundcards can sometimes be determined by the quality of the AD converters and mic pre amps. For example the quality of the RME AD converters is better then the ones found on the M Audio soundcard range, although how much better is negotiable.

Tascam US122 M

Will the soundcard on my computer not suffice?

Whenever a customer questions this at Dolphin our response is always to let them try it out first with the onboard soundcard. There is no better way of learning how much of a difference good AD converters can be then to use really bad ones. The onboard soundcard (or internal soundcard) is installed for alert sounds, games and MP3s but when it comes to recording audio and transferring to digital you really do need a better soundcard. Interference from the transformer, hard drive and so on will always inhibit the quality

On board soundcards don’t offer multiple inputs which rules out any larger scale recording of bands or primarily drums. They also suffer from large amounts of latency (glitches in the audio recording) which you will need to overcome via getting a better soundcard. This latency is caused by the onboard drivers not being capable of fast transfer speeds. You really need something with ASIO 2 drivers, which most external soundcards support

 Saffire Pro 24

Focusrite Saffire Pro 24

How Many Inputs and Outputs do I need?

In today’s market there is a soundcard for everybody. We always ask customers to think into the future. Will there ever be a time that you will want to record more than two inputs simultaneously. This might be drums, a live recording, a band or the fact that they will have many instruments and don’t want to keep plugging and unplugging cables. If the answer is yes then we recommend 8 inputs. Unless you have a specific reason we would recommend that you have all 8 inputs via XLR and mic pre amps. You may not want this if you are using your own Pre Amps or you specifically need jacks.

 ProFire 2626 High-Definition FireWire Audio Interface

M-Audio ProFire 2626 High-Definition FireWire Audio Interface

If your music work will mainly be you and overdubbing other parts later, you can work happily with one or two inputs which is how a large amount of souncards are designed. Many people realise that they only need two inputs and if that is the case there are many options for you. Solutions range from just a small box that you connect to your computer, MIDI keyboards with soundcards built in (for the musician on the move) to guitar FX modeling solutions that you can connect straight to your computer. More and more manufacturers are seeing the need for combining an audio recording solution with their products.

 POD Studio UX2 Pro Tone Recording & Modelling Interface

Do I need a special Soundcard to use Pro Tools?

In a nutshell “Yes”. DigiDesign software will only work with Digi Design hardware. They obviously do very expensive HD systems for the medium to large studios, but they also have a more budget range of audio recording solutions. They have the Digi 002 and rack version for someone who wants 8 simultaneous inputs into ProTools. Anyone just wanting 2 inputs they have the ever popular MBOX and new MBOX Pro.

Digi Design MBox 2

Digi Design has recently bought M Audio, a smaller company that specialises in soundcards. Since doing this they have allowed users to run Pro Tools on M Audio soundcards. To do this you must purchase software called M Powered and have a soundcard that is compatible and you have a Pro Tools system.

Digi Design 002 Rack

Soundcard Connectivity with Computers

The ever popular question about what connection you should go for is asked by customers every day at Dolphin Music. Firewire is probably the most popular type as of today due to its fast data transfer speed, you will find that M Audio firewire interfaces as well as Presonus are very good. USB 2.0 which is actually slightly faster is also popular with the Mbox 2 Micro , Steinberg CI2 and Apogee ONE using it.

Back in the last century when we started all this USB and Firewire were but a twinkle in some technician’s eye. It was all about PCI cards which are going as string today as they have done. PCI (or PCIX – new versions) can offer faster data transfer but are also more processor dependent. Famous PCI soundcards are the likes of the M Audio Delta range and the older MOTU range of soundcards.

M Audio Delta 1010

It would be rude to talk about connectivity and not mention PCMCIA. This is a method of connecting directly to laptops. Just think PCI for laptops. Due to USB and Firewire it is becoming less popular but some still believe it to be the only true way of getting true recordings onto laptops. This is debatable and we just don’t have the time!

Free Software

All soundcards will come with software that will allow you to control the routing of audio within your soundcard. You will need this software to interface with your recording software. It basically allows you to interface with your soundcard as if it were a mixing console.

Presonus Inspire

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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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I•ONIX U42S Lexicon ® streamlines the desktop recording interface

April 23, 2009

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Brilliantly designed, The Lexicon I·ONIX U42S USB 2.0 Audio Interface Desktop of the I·ONIX Recording Series fits where it makes the most sense, between your keyboard and monitor. With all monitor and input level controls at your fingertips, you’ll wonder why no one ever thought of it before.

The Lexicon IONIX U42S USB 2.0 Audio Interface features the newly designed dbx microphone preamps on every channel, the I·ONIX series is more than equipped to provide professional recordings that keep your music sounding its best.

The Lexicon I·ONIX U42S records four analogue and two digital channels simultaneously.

The Lexicon I·ONIX U42S USB 2.0 Audio Interface main features include:

  • USB 2.0 connection to DAW – up to 480Mbps
  • 44.1 to 96kHz sample rates, 24-bit resolution
  • Analogue ¼” and XLR combi-jack inputs on the rear panel for mic/line inputs
  • Analogue ¼” TRS (Stereo Main) outputs
  • dbx® high-voltage, ultra-low noise mic preamp’s on all analogue mic/line inputs
  • Supports Windows® and Mac® platforms 48V phantom power for each input pair
  • Input signal metering via 8 LED’s per channel Signal mixing and stereo bus signal metering
  • ¼” high output headphone connection(s)
  • MIDI In/Out
  • Zero latency monitoring
  • Low latency ASIO drivers
  • Lexicon Pantheon II VST/AU reverb plug-in
  • Software suite includes Steinberg®’s Cubase® LE4, and Toontrack® EZdrummer® Lite

Specifications:

  • Combi-jack Analogue Inputs: 4
  • Simult. Recording Sources: 6
  • Microphone Preamps: 4
  • Hi-Z Instrument Inputs: 2
  • S/PDIF
  • MIDI
  • Headphone Connections: 2
  • ¼” TRS Analog Outputs: 2
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Don’t sacrifice your desktop or your music.

You care intensely about your music. It’s more than a pastime – it’s a passion. Lexicon understands your passion and it inspires us to innovate. Brilliantly designed, the I·ONIX Desktop Recording Series fits where it makes the most sense, between your keyboard and monitor. With all the level meters and gain controls at your fingertips when using your DAW, you’ll wonder why no one ever thought of it before.

Featuring newly designed dbx® 60V high-voltage, ultra-low noise mic preamps on all 4 channels, the I•ONIX U42S is more than equipped to provide professional recordings that keep your music sounding its best. The preamps run on a high-voltage supply to guarantee stability and provide you with a superior recording across a wide dynamic range. Performance driven A/D – D/A converters ensure pristine 24-bit/96kHz audio to capture every subtle detail of your performance.

The I•ONIX U42S can record four tracks at once and includes 4 combi-jack mic/line inputs with +48V phantom power, 2 TRS balanced line outputs, 2 hi-Z instrument inputs, 2 high power 1/4″ headphone outputs, S/PDIF and MIDI I/O. Dedicated knobs and meters offer easy access to input and output levels and locking combi-jacks make sure that a connection is not lost in the middle of a performance.

Pantheon Hall

The Lexicon name is synonymous with “the world’s best reverb.” The Pantheon™ II VST/AU reverb plug-in features 6 reverb types with 16 adjustable parameters, and 35 factory presets that range from Vocal to Live Sound and Special Effects. It’s easy to complete your mix and make your music sound its best with the exquisitely rich, full reverbs that made Lexicon famous.

No compromise performance – ergonomic brilliance.
Pure genius.

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The Rode M2 builds on the success of Røde’s TEC Award-winning S1 microphone

April 23, 2009

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The Rode M2 builds on the success of Røde’s TEC Award-winning S1 microphone, the company’s first condenser aimed at performance applications.

Condenser microphones are not generally used in live applications because of their perceived fragility and susceptibility to feedback. And that’s where the M2 is very different from a condenser aimed at studio use. To protect the M2 from the rough treatment it’s likely to encounter on stage, the capsule is suspended within a shockmounting system built into the mic’s heavy-duty metal body. To prevent the microphone picking up signals that might cause feedback, the M2’s capsule has been engineered to provide a super-cardioid pickup pattern. This means the microphone will reject sound sources in front of and to the sides of the capsule, capturing only the sound from directly in front of it.

RODE M2 LIVE PERFORMANCE CONDENSER MICROPHONE SPECIFICATIONS

Power: P24/48V phantom power.
Acoustic Principle: Pressure gradient.
Directional Pattern: Super-Cardioid.
Frequency range: 35Hz – 20kHz.
Output impedance: 50 ohms.
Signal noise ratio: 71dB SPL (A – weighted per IEC651).
Equivalent noise: 23dBA SPL (A – weighted per IEC651).
Maximum SPL: 141dB (@1kHz, 1% THD into 1kohms load).
Maximum output voltage: +5.2dBu (@1kHz, 1% THD into 1kohms load).
Sensitivity: -44dB re 1 Volt/Pascal (6.3 mV @ 94 dB SPL) +/- 2 dB @ 1kHz.
Weight: 308gm.
Dimensions: 187mmH x 47mmW x 47mmD.

RODE M2 LIVE PERFORMANCE CONDENSER MICROPHONE FEATURES

Live condenser vocal microphone.
Feedback rejecting supercardioid pickup pattern.
Locking on/off switch.
Heavy-duty metal body.
Integrated shock mounting system to minimise handling noise.
High level of Radio Frequencies rejection.
Low handling noise.
Designed and manufactured in Australia.
Zip pouch and stand mount with 3/8-inch thread adapter included.

Reviews”The RØDE M2 offers a viable alternative to a dynamic vocal mic and produces a near studio-quality result for a surprisingly affordable price. Given its sensible price, robust build and high sound quality, it would be churlish of me not to give it the thumbs up in all departments.” – Performing Musician, November 2008

“This mic could be the ‘Swiss Army’ mic of your collection. We struggled to find where this mic is out of its depth. The M2 seems to have the strength and durability, plus excellent sound reproduction, that helps it fit the bill as a mic equally effective for studio and live performance.” – Pickup, November 2008

“In terms of dynamic range and capacity to deliver a robust monitor level before feedback, the M2 is an outstanding product. The quality of reproduction in the mains was comparable to that of a mic four times the price… I was able to get a big increase in level before feedback [in place of Beta58]… It featured less [bleed] than I would expect from a dynamic… Based on this test alone I’d purchase a handful of M2s for my mic kit.” – Canadian Musician

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How to Make Your Guitar Sound Like a Sax! The Sonuus G2M

April 22, 2009

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No modifications are required to your guitar; no special pickups to install; and nothing needs to be “stuck” onto your instrument. It works with all electric guitars.

The G2M™ is a simple-to-use, highly effective, guitar-to-MIDI converter. It is “Universal” because it doesn’t need a special pick-up mounted on your guitar, but instead simply connects to your guitar like any other effects pedal or tuner.

Designed to give accurate triggering, with low-latency, it is a true plug-and-play solution for monophonic MIDI guitar. It can be used to sequence bass lines and guitar solos add an edge to your live performances — it opens up many creative possibilities.

Features

  • Any electric guitar can be used as a solo MIDI guitar.
  • No guitar modifications or special pickups required.
  • Robust note detection — minimises wrong notes.
  • Accurate pitch-bend determination.
  • Low latency.
  • Built-in tuner for standard guitar tuning.
  • Battery-powered with long battery life.
  • Compact, lightweight and portable.

Universal Appeal

No modifications are required to your guitar; no special pickups to install; and nothing needs to be “stuck” onto your instrument. It works with all electric guitars.

The G2M™ universally appeals to all guitarists from novices to seasoned professionals. Keenly priced to fit any budget, with the robust reliable performance expected by the finest stagemen.

Incredibly simple to use:

  1. Plug your guitar into instrument in to power-up the G2M™
  2. Connect your MIDI device (or computer) to the MIDI out
  3. Play notes on your guitar and MIDI will be sent out!

Powered from a single PP3 battery, its long battery life combined with small size makes the G2M™ the ideal accessory to keep with your guitar. Not only does it provide fast and precise tuning, but it also gives you instant MIDI capability for any electric guitar!

Robust Performance

Research has shown us that the most important aspect for pitch-to-MIDI conversion is reliable and reproducible triggering of notes. While low-latency is important, robust triggering is the key to usability — you can easily adapt to some latency, but you cannot adapt to random, spurious notes.

By virtue of the unique, inherently robust technology used in the G2M™ you will be able to reliably generate accurate MIDI quickly and easily. Notes are generated exactly as played, and the nuances of your performance are captured with fast, accurate pitch-bend data.

Built-in Tuner

The built-in tuner uses our PULSAR™ tuning technology where the power LED doubles as a tuning indicator. This innovative tuner gives you a fast and accurate way to tune your guitar.

Instrument Thru

Featuring a high-impedance input circuit, the G2M™ won’t sap your tone when using it “in-line” before your amp, or other effects pedals. You can then easily combine MIDI sounds with your normal guitar sound for some exciting musical possibilities.

Improves Playing Technique

For optimal MIDI conversion, your guitar playing needs to be clean and accurate. Accidental notes, resonating open strings and other sounds can often be converted into undesired MIDI notes. Often you don’t hear these when playing guitar yourself, but can detect them easily when listening live to the generated MIDI.

Striving to improve MIDI note accuracy, encourages clean picking and accurate fingering, with good control over non-sounding strings by damping them.

Not only will your MIDI output be more accurate, your normal guitar playing will sound clearer and more professional. It’s like having a tutor sitting beside you giving you advice. It’s also great fun!

Most of all, it’s Fun!

When you try the G2M™ and generate some new sounds, the first thing that strikes you is how much fun it is. Unleash new creative inspiration and invigorate your soul.

Specification

  • Power supply 9V PP3 battery. Average current consumption < 10mA. (Typically more than 70 hours operating time.)
  • Tuner notes E2, A2, D3, G3, B3, E4 (Standard 6-string guitar tuning)
  • Tuner accuracy <1 cent when pulsing at <1Hz
  • Note detection range E2 to E6
  • MIDI latency 16ms to 30ms depending on note and characteristics of input signal
  • MIDI power 5V (via 200 ohm resistor as per the MIDI specification)
  • Size 83mm x 58mm x 34mm
  • Weight 80g (without battery)
  • Inputs 6.35mm mono jack (switches unit on when jack is inserted)
  • Outputs 6.35mm mono jack connected directly to input jack. Standard 5-pin MIDI socket.
  • Switches Boost switch to select between low- and high-output guitars
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Shure Microphone Maintenance Tips!

April 9, 2009

Shure have a series of podcasts aimed at clearing up any problems microphone users may be experiencing. In this Podcast they explore the top frequently asked questions from the Shure Applications Group. Chris Lyons is joined by Tim Vear as they discuss how to clean a microphone grill and how to hook a mic up to a computer. Liftpoint from Chicago, IL provides the soundtrack on this podcast.

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Dolphin Music Studio Spotlight: Whitewood Studios

March 25, 2009

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Located in Liverpool’s Elevator buliding (also home to to Dolphin Music) is Whitewood Recordings Studios.

Found located  in one of the cities most vibrant new areas, the Building itself  boasts The Leaf Cafe, numerous  big name artists and musicians alongside the most talked about young acts, graphic designers, software developers and dancers even grace a floor!

All this activity seems to be leading to a valuable asset to Liverpool whilst offering facilites to the artss across a whole spectrum.

Dolphin Music took a snoop around Whitewood Recording Studios and spoke to the two main chaps Robert Whitley and Danny Woodward. We talked pre-amps , the need for outboard equipment and what it takes to make a session smoothly. The live room is spacious and well stocked and their patter is relaxed and welcoming.

http://www.whitewoodrecordingstudio.com

Get in touch if your studio wishes to be inclued in this series of videos media@dolphinmusic.co.uk

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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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Metronomes: 10 of the best

February 10, 2009

Allegro

A metronome is any device that produces a regulated aural, visual or tactile pulse to establish a steady tempo in the performance of music. It is a useful practice tool for musicians that dates back to the early 19th century.

The word metronome first appeared in English c.1815 and is Greek in origin:

metron = measure, nomos = regulating

Ludwig van Beethoven was the first notable composer to indicate specific metronome markings in his music, in 1817.

Mechanical metronomes

One common type of metronome is the mechanical metronome which uses an adjustable weight on the end of a pendulum (also known as a double-weighted pendulum) rod to control the tempo: The weight is slid up the pendulum rod to decrease tempo, or down to increase tempo. The pendulum swings back and forth in tempo, while a mechanism inside the metronome produce a clicking sound with each oscillation.

Electronic metronomes

Electronic metronome, Wittner model

Most modern metronomes are electronic and use a quartz crystal to maintain accuracy, comparable to those used in wristwatches. The simplest electronic metronomes have a dial or buttons to control the tempo; some also produce tuning notes, usually around the range of A440 (440 hertz). Sophisticated metronomes can produce two or more distinct sounds. Tones can differ in pitch, volume, and/or timbre to demarcate downbeats from other beats, as well as compound and complex time signatures.

Many electronic musical keyboards have built-in metronome functions.

Software metronomes

Metronomes now exist in software form, either as stand alone applications or often in music sequencing and audio multitrack software packages. In recording studio applications, such as film scoring, a software metronome is often used to generate a click track to synchronize musicians.

10 of the best:

Wittner MT41 Digital Metronome

Digital Credit Card / Digital Metronome Features Convenient take-along credit card size Visual LCD Simple 4-button operation Tempo Range: 30 – 250 times/min. 10 visual and audible beat settings Reference Note: A–440Hz for tuning Earphonek: Monophonic, 2.5mm (0.1″) plug (earphone not included) Memory of last setting Accuracy Metronome: ±0.03% …

Buy Now More Info

Wittner Metronome – Mahogany-coloured, matte – With Bell

Wittner Metronome – Mahogany-coloured, matte – With Bell Christmas Stocking Filler Gift Ideas Mahogany coloured matt silk finish. With bell.

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Wittner Traditional Maelzel Pyramid Metronome – Plastic Case – With Bell – Black

Plastic Case Traditional Shape Wind Up Mechanism Swinging Pendulum Tempo Range 40 – 208 BPM Audible Click (with bell – 4 beat settings) Dimensions 117 x 220 x 117mm

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Wittner Metronome Mälzel – Walnut-coloured, Matte – With Bell

Wittner Metronome Mälzel – Walnut-coloured, Matte – With Bell Caring for the Exterior of Your Instrument       Make sure to use a polishing cloth  to remove dust and fingerprints after…

Seiko SQ50V

A quartz metronome with built in tone generator, features two tempo sounds & a dynamic speaker for high quality sound. Tempo: 40-208 Tone Generator: A4, Bb Pitch Shift: A4=440Hz Beat: 0, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

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Seiko DM70

A pocket-sized digital metronome with built in clock. Also features a tone generator. Tempo: 30-250 Tone Generator: C4-B4 Pitch Shift: A4=440Hz Beat: 0, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

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Seiko DM50 – Silver

Christmas Stocking Filler Gift Ideas A clip-style compact digital metronome with built in clock. Tempo: 30-250 Beat: 0, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 Other: 4 levels of volume Silver finish

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Wittner Maelzel System Quartz Metronome – Mahogany

Specifications Quartz Metronome Wooden Case Traditional Shape Tempo Range 40 – 208 BPM Visual Pulse Signal Audible Click Volume Control

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Wittner Taktell Classic Metronome – Black/Silver

Modern Classic Styling Silver or Gilded Facia, Pendulum and Winder Tempo Range 40 – 208 BPM Audible Click Dimensions 85 x 155 x 50mm Weight 177g

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However

A metronomical performance is certainly tiresome and nonsensical; time and rhythm must be adapted to and identified with the melody, the harmony, the accent and the poetry…..—Franz Liszt

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Tonight: Franz Ferdinand. D.I.Y. Studio for new album

January 23, 2009

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Tonight: Franz Ferdinand. D.I.Y. Studio for new album

Tonight: Franz Ferdinand. It’s a typically detailed affair from this habitually detail-stuffed band. Kapranos talks about the “narcotic” elements of the song, a throbbing funk number with razor-sharp guitar riffs; about how the Glasgow-based foursome want to look as if they’ve gone “feral” under the influence of paganism.

“I’m really bored by all the guitar music,” says McCarthy, guitarist with the band who, when they released their debut, singlehandedly revitalised British guitar music almost ten years after the glory days of Britpop.

and so….

“Nihil Sin Labore” says the motto engraved on weathered stone above the front door of the old Govan Town Hall. ‘Nothing without work’. Franz Ferdinand know all about that. They have been bunkered in this building – also home to TV production, theatre and fashion companies – for nearly two years. It’s their latest artistic squat. Having met each other through the ever-busy Glasgow music scene, Franz Ferdinand started out in 2002 by occupying an abandoned Glasgow department store. Dubbing it the Chateau and channelling the spirit of Warhol’s Factory, they and artist friends would hold gigs-cum-exhibitions-cum-happenings. After signing a record deal they relocated to an old prison complex in the city.

Here in the town hall they’ve installed a jerrybuilt recording studio. As befits Franz Ferdinand’s status as Britain’s most innovative art-rock band, the group has spent the past 18 months “playing” this environment as if it were an instrument. “We got more sounds here than we would have in studio you’d pay £1,000 a day for,” says Hardy. This set-up even gave the new album its title and de facto theme: after neighbours complained about the noise the band boarded up the windows, shutting out daylight from the recording process. Hence Tonight: Franz Ferdinand, a DIY record bristling with club-friendly and quirky electronic tunes. Saturday night fever, given a postmillennium credit-crunch reboot.

Hardy, 28, who initially came to Scotland from Bradford to study at Glasgow School of Art, gives me a tour. A store cupboard has become a keyboard room stuffed with vintage musical kit with lyrical names (Quartet Arp, Micromoog Synthesizer, Roland Rhythm Composer, King Vocoder). A former bathroom is now the band’s amplifier room, equipment stacked around the toilet bowl. In the Town Hall’s cavernous former debating chamber they set up their instruments in the middle of the floor and jammed. One day McCarthy (34, Blackpool-born, raised in Germany, relocated to Glasgow after graduating from the Munich Conservatory) spent hours crawling in the roof space to dangle and swing a microphone over their heads to create a Doppler effect. It amounts to four seconds of music on Tonight.

Half of the room housing their office is filled with a vintage Flickinger mixing desk, as beloved of Sly Stone, Ike Turner and Funkadelic – found for the band in Chicago. To record the new song What She Came For, Franz Ferdinand also decamped to the town hall’s cluttered basement, jammed in among boxes and flight cases. Hardy, a keen photographer, has images of this set-up on his lap-top. Thomson, 32, the sole Scotsman in the band and only dad (he has two young children), is pictured with his bandmates crowded round his drum kit. “We were playing right in each other’s faces,” recalls Kapranos. Why? “We wanted the end of What She Came For to sound like a nuclear explosion,” the singer beams

The band have performed around a half dozen tracks from the album live. A recent show in Brooklyn found the band on great form, playing new tracks with the titles ‘Bite Hard’, ‘Turn It On’, ‘Katherine, Kiss Me’, ‘Ulysses’ and ‘What She Came For’.
Produced by Dan Carey, the album should see the new Scottish gentry re-affirm their status as a top class musical machine.

Franz Ferdinand release their new album ‘Tonight: Franz Ferdinand’ on January 26th.

Source:The Times

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