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Readers' Letters: Your problem is that you simply don't have enough displays in your studio, and more...

A post by David Mellor
Thursday November 30, 2006
A selection of readers' letters recently submitted to Record-Producer.com
Readers' Letters: Your problem is that you simply don't have enough displays in your studio, and more...
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In response to Your problem is that you simply don't have enough displays in your studio, an anonymous respondent writes...

People have been doing this for years. I started with two monitors 9 years ago. Up until recently, i used 3 19" CRTs side-by-side. I just switched to 2 22" widescreen LCDs with a 42" LCD on the wall for the mixer. It's almost as good as having a console in front of you. It's the only way to efficiently work on computer based recording systems.


In response to Why do old people listen to old music?, an anonymous respondent writes...

I taught 6th and 7th grade math and science students 2 years ago and I was shocked to see the girls coming to class with BEATLES logo's and pictures on some of their handbags and sweatshirts. Some 35 years after this group appeared, the girls were following them again? I asked many of them why they were wearing this "outdated" group on their things, and did they really listen to this music or was it a new fad to them? The resounding response was that they loved the group, it was happy music and melodies easily recognized and understood. Some, thinking a little deeper, commented that the Beatles sounded refreshing and that images in the words and music make you "smile." I asked if they minded the "distortion" in the music, and none of the kids even admitted to noting it, but they promised to listen for it next time. What does this say? It's simple. The kids said it perfectly without even realizing it. The music is MUSIC (with intelligent lyrics and melodies) that can stand by itself without piling on tons of audio sweeteners and pushing the volume through the roof (though George Martin did push the envelope, there was not a lot more than 2 or 3 hours spent at any one time to relase final product ... back in those days, you were lucky if they gave you 1/2 hour in the studio. You had to do it with minimal retakes!) I asked the kids if their parents had introduced them to this music and most had been trading amongst themselves via downloading services. Amazingly, The Beatles are being rediscovered every 10 years it seems .. along with The Doors, Janis Joplin, Hendrix, etc. etc. Why? I'ts old? Oh yes it's old, for sure. So old that the Beatles are regularly studied in college music appreciation courses .. I had to take one in the 1980's at Rutgers. It is also in the newest round of textbooks and music scholars around the world are still trying to figure out how this group was able to COMMUNICATE with millions, young AND old! They communicated youth, vitality, lyric and melody, and they are now dead or old men (only 2 are left alive). Does music that is so old become obsolete? Don't think so. My 16 year old daughter burned a CD mix and guess what is included with her contemporary pop? "Touch Me" by the Doors, "Birthday" by The Beatles and "Hey Joe" by the Jimi Hendrix Experience. From my OWN experience, my spine chills everytime I hear Janis sing "Cry Baby" ... haven't heard a voice like that in recent years. She makes your toes curl. Who cares if she sang it in 1969? It kicks butt. These are just a few of the reasons that we YOUNG AND OLD still listen to quality OLD music. Because it's great music. BTW, Janis needs no compressing. She did it all with one primal scream. Where can I find some hard ass female singers who rock? To the next generation of kids who "re-discover" The Beatles, you'll like them because it's just them having fun entertaining you. That's what pop music is supposed to do.

RP response: Great comment!


In response to Can you hear up to 96 kHz?, an anonymous respondent writes...

I couldn't agree more...

Hooray for Harry Nyquist!


In response to Why do Macs suck?, an anonymous respondent writes...

I too 'invested' in a MacBook Pro and have had very desirable results! I use Pro Tools LE in conjunction with Apple's native Garage Band. I use an MBox2 audio-interface with a Yamaha PSR-740 connected via midi..., my mic is an Audio-Technica 3035 cardiod.

My Apple has crashed before but ALWAYS with my session still 'intact' upon re-booting! Amazing!! That amazing Apple is one of the best investments I've ever made. I actually intend to shortly replace my Presario desktop with another Mac, a Mac Pro!

It is quite difficult to achieve the desired results without having the 'proper tools'. Each person's needs are different but if you intend to do professional grade releases, I would encourage you to first invest in professional grade gear. There are reasons one item is a bit more expensive than the next. I encourage anyone desiring to do music on a professional level....invest in a Mac! Every studio doing major work on a consistent basis use Mac's because of their reliable. Invest in the best for the best results. It's better to spend a little more than you thought than to spend less than you should. I love my Mac and the results I achieve with it.


In response to 'Groove' - is it all-important, or does the band just have to play the way they feel?, an anonymous respondent writes...

I would say that Mutt Lange does what he has to do to capture or creat a vibe or grove. I would have to say that the whole "Back in Black" album certainly has no lack of feel, nor does any of the Shania for that matter. Mutt is a master at getting the final recording perfect, not quantized, but "groove", "in the pocket" perfect. Subconsciusly this must be a good thing because he has sold millions and millions of albums. This is just my opinion.


In response to Do acoustic instruments need compression?, Colin Block, The Dream Factory Studio writes...

Couldn't see a name attached to the article on "Do acoustic instruments need compression?", but I totally agree. Adjust the overall level, and indeed the individual levels of individal tracks MANUALLY on a bar by bar basis (no compressors). It gives a far more natural, and expressive effect. A large part of vocal expression for example lies in changes in volume, swells etc. Compress the dynamic range in a blanket fashion, and you de facto reduce that type of expressiveness. I've been banging on about this for years to anyone who would listen - I'ts nice to find a kindred, if anonymous, spirit.

A post by David Mellor
Thursday November 30, 2006 ARCHIVE
David Mellor has been creating music and recording in professional and home studios for more than 30 years. This website is all about learning how to improve and have more fun with music and recording. If you enjoy creating music and recording it, then you're definitely in the right place :-)
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