Category : In the Studio

10 Apr 2017

Understanding ADSR to Manipulate Your Synths

You’ve probably seen the knobs on your virtual synths labeled ‘A’, ‘D’, ‘S’, and ‘R’. But do you know how to use them to fully control your sound? These are very powerful knobs – they control the envelope, and therefore can change your sound quite drastically. Let’s take a look into how it works and how you can use it. The first thing to understand is what the “envelope” is. It’s basically the “shape” of the waveform. In synthesis, it […]

09 Apr 2017

Loud Mixes and Masters – the Right Way

In today’s competitive commercial music scene, loud is viewed as better. Whether you like it or not, you need to be able to get your mixes and masters loud if you want to sound like the commercial pros. But that doesn’t mean you have to destroy the dynamic range and overall quality of your mix. It’s all about doing it the right way and getting loud tracks without squashing all of the life out of them. Here’s one of the […]

09 Apr 2017

Do you *love* great headphones and audiophile gear? Check this out

I’ve long been a fan of Grado headphones…the required headphones for many a critical listening class. But if you think your Beats by Dre can compare, I would challenge you to both check out this amazing tour of the components used to test *Every. Single. Pair* before they go out the door. Here’s the crazy thing…even a simple $99 set like the SR80e’s will give you a *much* more accurate listening experience, and you’ll actually *save* money in the process. […]

08 Apr 2017

Free Soft Synth – Happy Labor Day!

Happy Labor Day – here’s a free soft synth you probably didn’t know about! Sometimes getting a new plugin or VI can spark your creativity and help you write something completely new – so save this one until you’re having that “writer’s block moment.” It’s called Kairatune by Futucraft. It’s a mono synth that has a pretty wide range of sounds – everything from tight bass to hard hitting leads. Enjoy your fresh new sounds! Click here to get your […]

07 Apr 2017

Saving Your Plugin Settings and Channel Strips

It may seem like a tedious and unnecessary task, but if you do this one thing, you’ll save yourself countless hours down the road. You’ll not only save time, but you’ll actually become a better mixer. It all starts with a little file management – let’s get started. Create a folder on your hard drive (internal or external, it doesn’t matter too much for this.) Call it [Your Name] Presets. Then, create several folders inside this folder. Title them “Vocals”, […]

06 Apr 2017

The Best Software Purchase You’ll Ever Make

For years Pro Tools has been regarded as the industry standard DAW, and understandably so.  Though my opinion could be biased, it seems to me that everything I look for and want in a DAW, it does. Any tool, any trick, it can do.  Any shortcut, it has it.  From user interface to logical navigability, all is as it should be. Outside the pool of “believers” there is always grumbling. I often hear, “Pro Tools crashes too much!”   In […]

04 Apr 2017

Need a Bigger Low End in Your Production? Try This Bass Trick

If you’re looking for a beefy low end, then you’ve probably tried every trick in the book. Boosting EQ, compression, low-end harmonic exciters – you name it, it’s been tried. My favorite trick that seems to work every time? Doubling the bass with two (or more) tracks. But if you’re looking to actually add that low end punch into your productions, there’s a few things you need to know. Because bass can so easily become obnoxious and “muddy”, you’ve got […]

03 Apr 2017

5 Steps to a Successful Multi-Tracking Session

Multi-tracking is an essential skill set that any engineer must have. But it’s not quite as easy as it might seem. It’s a lot more than just hitting record. It can be a stressful situation, even when you’re just multi-tracking with three musicians. Let’s go through 5 steps to a successful session: 1. Set up the cues perfectly and make sure they are ready before the musicians arrive. That means go through each set of headphones and make sure that […]

03 Apr 2017

Future Proof Pro Tools Sessions

On one of the main Nashville producer engineer forums, this topic came up yesterday as a long time producer discovered he could no longer open sessions he archived 10 years ago to CD and DVD. In that case it turns out that the media has simply started to go bad, causing corrupt files and sessions that could not be imported without a lot of extra hassle. But even if you have backups saved to ultra-reliable hard drives or tapes, what’s […]

02 Apr 2017

Mastering: The Dark Art Revealed

So many misconceptions revolve around a single term in the recording biz: mastering. Some people believe that mastering makes a terrible mix sound radio-ready. Those people ask for refunds after they get back a poor master. Some people believe that you need a million dollar room in order to even think about mastering. When does a million dollar room hurt? Never. But is it necessary? Nope. In order to understand exactly what mastering is and how you can do it […]