Archive for the ‘Guitars’ Category

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E-MU PIPEline Wi-Fi System for Musicians

May 13, 2009

E-MU_pipeline_front

E-MU® Systems has announced the release of the new PIPEline wireless stereo audio transmitter/receiver system. The PIPEline has been designed to free musicians from their audio cables without sacrificing audio quality. PIPEline can be used as a wireless transceiver for a guitar or keyboard, or as the basis of a wireless In-Ear monitoring system for a band.

Because latency is so critical in music performance, PIPEline has a minimal delay of only 6.6 ms, so it won’t interfere with the feel of the music. A PIPEline’d musician can move anywhere within a 15 meter range from the receiver. PIPEline also has three independent stereo channels, which means that three instruments can be completely independent with zero crosstalk.

PIPEline is also a great solution for low-cost In-Ear monitoring, supporting up to three separate stereo monitor mixes, or one transmitter can send a group mix to multiple receivers.

PIPEline will ship in the Spring of 2009. Price to be announced.

PIPEline Features

  • Mobile wireless, transmit or receive – Each PIPEline can be configured as a transmitter or receiver for ultimate flexibility and works with any audio gear.
  • Better than CD Quality Digital Audio – Audiophile quality sound with 48 kHz sample rate and 96dB signal-to-noise ratio of uncompressed audio
  • Low Latency Unlike other wireless transceivers with long latency of 20 ms, PIPEline offers low latency so essential for live music applications. (6.6 ms in dedicated pairing mode /10ms in broadcast mode)
  • 15 Meter (49 feet) Range – PIPEline has Extended Audio Range Reception (EARR) to give you even more freedom
  • Long Battery Life (up to 10 hrs receive) – The rechargeable battery lasts up to 10 hours in receive mode and 5 hours in transmit mode.
  • Analog/Digital inputs or outputs – The audio Flex-Jacks can be configured as inputs or outputs and they can also be setup to send or receive analog or digital S/PDIF – whatever type of connections you need.
  • Broadcast mode allows one transmitter and multiple receivers – In this mode, one transmitter can broadcast to multiple receivers.
  • PIPEline can be used as an “In-Ear” monitor system for your band, or broadcast to a class of students using headphones.
  • Power adapter/charger, cables and skin included
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Propellerheads New Record Software was designed for musicians – not audio engineers.

May 12, 2009

090511_record_frontpage

Propellerhead have a very good standing reputation, and it safe to say their flagship program Reason opened up a lot of doors, for a lot of musicians. Its huge sound bank was, and is something every good musician need in their toolbox. Its layout reasonably (ahem) simple.

It just didn’t record audio! One minor flaw, but quite a big one if your looking for that all-in-one piece of software to ‘record’ you band for instance.

That’s where record steps in. Propellerhead Software’s brand new recording software. Record gives you unlimited audio tracks, world class effects and mixing gear, and a whole new take on music recording. With an intuitive, straightforward interface and a hands-on approach to capturing performances, Record was designed for musicians – not audio engineers. This is recording done right.

Record now – not later.

Recording music is all about seizing the moment. Capturing a perfect performance – or even nailing that idea before it goes away – requires tools that are ready when you are. Record is always ready. Created with musicians in mind, Record lets you create record ready channels in an instant, minimizing the steps between idea and actual recording. The result equals more music – and less dialog boxes. Simply plug in, breathe out and you’re ready to go.

Line 6 in the mix

For guitar and bass players, Record comes installed with separate guitar and bass POD® units from amp and cab simulation experts Line 6 Inc. With bass and guitar amplifiers available for every single track in your Record project, you are never short of interesting tones and timbres. As the Line 6 amplifiers are insert effects and don’t affect the original instrument signal, you are free to change your amplifier and cabinet settings at any point in time – even after laying down your track.

The Record rack

All the instruments, processors and effect units used in a song are housed inside Record’s customizable rack. Any device created is automatically and logically patched into the rack, but if you’re feeling adventurous or need to do some routing of your own, just flip your entire Record rack over and all the cables are all yours!

The Record Effects

Your Record rack can be stacked with an infinite number of reverbs, distortion units, delays, dynamic processors, mastering EQs – everything you need to shape and color your sounds. Click and drag effects straight to the rack, or load any of the expertly crafted patches.

EQ Section

The mixing console features a warm sounding EQ section with high and low pass filters, high and low shelving filters as well as parametric midrange filters. This is where you can add some extra polish to your recordings, and the sound is just fabulous.

Channel Dynamics

Every channel has its own fully featured dynamics section with compressor, gate and expander functions.

Effect Sends

The console has eight dedicated effect sends and each channel’s sends can be set to work pre or post fader. Adding a send effect to the mixer is a two mouseclick affair. Simply right-click in the mixer’s master section and select what effect you want to use. Simple!

Insert effects

Record’s mixer features a clever way to handle insert effects. As explained on the Record page, each track in Record is made up of three components: a sequencer track, an rack device (audio track or mix device) and a mixer channel. In the rack device, you can put all the insert effects you want on your sound, and you can also map controls on the insert effects to the insert section in the mixer. These setups can then be saved as patches for instant recall. Record ships with a large library of ready-made insert patches for a wide array of applications. Reason users will recognize this method from Reason’s combinator, so in essence this is like having a dedicated combinator per mixer channel.

Fader Section

Here’s the control you will find yourself using more than anything else in the mixer. As the name and the picture implies, this is where the faders are and this is also where you set the pan, handle solo and mute. Stereo channels also have a stereo width control.

Master Compressor

The Master compressor is what gives your music that final touch. The legendary dynamics processor it was modeled after is in use in studios all over the world.

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

April 22, 2009

g2m_usage_map


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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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% …

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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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Metallica,’Death Magnetic’ Guitar Hero and the loudness debate

November 21, 2008

metallica-band

Metallica are an American heavy metal band that formed in 1981 in Los Angeles. They are arguably the biggest rock acts of all time and have an army of devoted followers.

‘Death Magnetic’ Metallica’s latest album debuted at number one on the Billboard 200, selling 490,000 copies in just three days of availability. It is the band’s fifth consecutive studio album to debut at number one, making Metallica the first and only band with the most consecutive studio releases to open at number one. The album also had the highest first week sales of any Metallica album since 1996’s Load.

However this release has been the subject of great debate amongst the fans regarding its production, sound quality and more specifically the mastering process. The debate even has even gone as far as coverage on BBC Radio 6, The Guardian and leading Rolling Stone  to cite a petition from fans to remix or remaster the album!

Death Magnetic is the ninth studio album by American heavy metal band Metallica, released on September 12, 2008 by Warner Bros. Records. It is the band’s first studio album to feature current bassist Robert Trujillo, as well as the first to be produced by Rick Rubin. Death Magnetic is also the band’s first studio album released through Warner Bros., although they still remain with Warner Music Group, which also owns Elektra Records, their previous label (internationally they remain on Vertigo Records). The album is the band’s fifth consecutive studio album to debut at number one on the Billboard 200 in the United States, making Metallica the first band ever to achieve five consecutive number one debut

metallic-ad-mag

The album has been criticized for having compromised sound quality and being compressed “past the point of distortion”. Sean Michaels of The Guardian explains that “the sound issues are a result of the “loudness war” – an ongoing industry effort to make recordings as loud as possible”.

Comparison of the CD and Guitar Hero versions. Is the CD modern and loud or digital compressed noise??

A Rolling Stone article states that Rick Rubin was “overseeing mixes in Los Angeles while the band is in Europe, headlining shows” and only communicated with him by conference calls.Fans have noted that these sonic problems are not present in the Guitar Hero version of the album, where the tracks are present separately because of the game mechanics. MusicRadar and Rolling Stone attribute a quote to the album’s mastering engineer Ted Jensen in which he claims that “mixes were already brick-walled before they arrived” for mastering and cite a petition from fans to remix or remaster the album.

Metallica and Rick Rubin initially declined to comment on the issue, while the band’s co-manager Cliff Burnstein stated that complainers were in a minority and that response to the album had otherwise been “overwhelmingly positive”.Lars Ulrich later confirmed in an interview with Blender, that some creative control regarding the album’s production had indeed been transferred to Rubin but also stressed his satisfaction with the final product.

The distortion that Metallica fans are so enraged by on the new album “Death Magnetic”, and that mastering engineer Ted Jensen was so unhappy about is not present on the version used for the Playstation 3 game “Guitar Hero”.

Analysis of the levels in the tracks shows it is VERY loud. Great-sounding albums typically average an RMS loudness of -16 to -12 dBFS, however i recent years louder albums have pushed much higher, for example -8 or -6 dBFS. Here is one mastering engineers analysis of Death Magnetic:

CD manufacturers seemingly are distorting sounds to make them seem louder. Sound quality clearly suffers.

The video was made with image editing software and a screen capture program for the visuals, and a DAW (Digital Performer 4.5) to process the audio.

Source:

Matt Mayfield

http://mastering-media.blogspot.com/2008/09/metallica-death-magnetic-stop-loudness.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Untitled_Metallica_album

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Dolphin Music’s Top 10 Xmas Gadgets

December 7, 2007

 

Christmas time is here again, and Dolphin Music has decided to highlight 10 very desirable products that we think will  be a success this year.

1) Tenori-On
Tenori-On
Unique. Original. Stylish. Yamaha’s  Tenori-On is quite possibly the most revolutionary musical instrument to be created since the electric guitar.  There’s nothing like it, and it’s user-friendly  “visible music” interface makes it not only a very useful and versatile tool for professional musicians and producers, but also a fantastic instrument for those who never thought they could play anything. Available  exclusively to the UK. £599 view product

2) Robot Guitar

click to enlarge

Is it possible!? This year’s other  big instrument launch is also something  that promises to change the face of music. The Limited-Edition Gibson Robot Guitar is set to revolutionize guitar-playing forever: a self-tuning guitar that also offers alternate tunings at the push of a button, this is the first guitar ever to feature robot technology, and Dolphin Music is amongst the selected dealers selling it. £1499 view product

3) Stylophone
Stylophone
Brand New Version of the old classic – Now with MP3 input.  The retro, cheap, small and quirky Stylophone is already a big sensation this Xmas. Find out what it’ll all about, and get the instrument that proved to be not just a great kids’ toy, but also fascinated artists such as David Bowie, Pulp, Kraftwerk and others…only £14 view product


4) Pocket POD Pocket POD® exhibits all the celebrated features and pro tone that makes POD a standard in recording studios everywhere. Don’t be fooled by the smaller package, Pocket POD is packed with over 300 custom presets dialed in by some of today’s hottest rock stars like Maroon 5, P.O.D., 311, Hoobastank and many more. Line 6 Pocket Pod

Battery-powered and about the size of a tuner, Pocket POD is completely portable. Use it for effects in front of your amp, or just plug in headphones and practice anywhere, anytime. Guitarists are sure to love it!  £64.99 view product

5) Micro BR
Boss Micro BR
The ultimate palmtop guitar companion and recording studio. Only slightly larger than an iPod, the tiny-yet-powerful Micro BR is a dream for musicians on the go. The Micro BR offers four simultaneous playback tracks (plus 32 Virtual Tracks), MP3 compatibility, onboard multi-effects, built-in rhythm patterns, a tuner, USB, an SD Card slot, and more. No guitar case or gig bag should be without one!  At £130, it’s a bargain.
view product

6) microKorg Black
Now funkier than ever, this limited-edition of the very successful and highly desirable microKORG synthesizer/vocoder  features a reversed keyboard, to play the massive sound of the microKORG. Demand is very high and this is a one-off production run with only a limited number available. This could be your only chance to order this very special product, so call us now before they all disappear!  
£249 view product 

 

7) Mackie Onyx Satellite

This is a fantastic offer – a great product for an unbeatable price, exclusive on Dolphin Music…if you’re looking for a new soundcard this xmas, don’t miss this great  opportunity! As the world’s first two-piece FireWire recording system, Satellite consists of a portable recording Pod with premium Onyx mic preamps, and a desktop Base Station with additional inputs and outputs. You simply undock the Pod when you want to record on location—leaving the Base Station connected to all your desktop studio gear (microphones, instruments, headphones, studio monitors, etc.). Then, once you’ve returned to your studio, simply dock the Satellite Pod back into the Base Station with a reassuring “click.”

There’s no better soundcard deal at the moment! 

Only  £119.95 (save over £200 off RRP) view product

8 ) AudioBlob 2

Audio Blob
Audioblob2 provides superlative audio quality for music/multimedia & gaming and is configured so that you can control the overall audio volume and the sub-bass level separately, thereby providing subtle and discreet volume control, up to an annoy-your-neighbours, floor-shaking level 10 – The choice is yours! 

This system has been developed in partnership with audio engineers from Tannoy, with many years experience in designing the very best home audio systems. Even if you don’t know it yet, you need an AudioBlob2. Buy one, and you won’t believe you could ever live without one! Great buy at only £59 view product

9) Limited-Edition Z-Vex Union Jack pedals
It looks like this is the “limited-edition xmas!” But, unlike the Robot Guitar or microKorg Black, the Z-Vex Union Jack pedals can only be purchased from Dolphin Music – we comissioned those handmade pedals, and they are limited to an exclusive 10 units per model: the Fuzz Factory, the Super Hard-On and the Box Of Rock.

Z-Vex Limited-Edition pedals

These pedals are destined to become collector’s items, and were manufactured with the same high-standards Z-Vex has always been known for.  Find out why so many  top-selling artists such as Muse, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Flaming Lips use Z-Vex! From £169 view product

10) Orange Micro Crush
Orange Crush

Standing at just 5” tall, the Micro Crush’s highly portable design belies the remarkably full bodied tones available from its 4” speaker. The amplifiers Tone and Volume controls allow you to dial in a number of different guitar sounds, and Over Drive distortion is available at the push of a button. One of the most useful features is the inclusion of a fully functional chromatic tuner. A Great little amp! £29 view product

If you want to find more xmas offers, just visit Dolphin Music’s new  Christmas Gifts section, with gift suggestions divided by different categories (Children / DJ / Studio / Stocking Stuffers/ etc…) to make the shopping experience even easier for you.

We wish you all a great Chrismas and a fantastic New Year! 

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Edirol UA-101 USB Audio Interface

September 6, 2006

The Edirol UA-101 is a single half-rack Hi-SPEED USB audio interface designed to turn your USB2.0 ready computer into a power Digital Audio Workstation.  No other computer connection is required to get a full 10 inputs and 10 outputs at 24-bit 96kHz to the computer.  The UA-101 is built on new Hi-SPEED USB technology to offer low latency and extraordinary stability paired with premium audio quality to offer the easiest, most powerful compact audio interface available.