Software Tech: 96 kHz vs. 44.1 kHz—Let’s Settle This
By Craig Anderton. Ever since we’ve had a choice of sample rates, there’s been controversy over whether higher sample rates sound better. Some claim higher sample rates add transparency to music, while others claim (with some justification) that no...
Software Tech: The Year of the Platform
By Craig Anderton. Given the pro audio and music industry’s relatively small slice of the economic pie, a platform makes sense. Products need staying power that allows amortizing development costs over as long a time as possible—and the longer...
The 143rd AES Convention Anderton Awards
With the restraining order from last year’s Anderton Awards still in effect (but c’mon—no one actually died from the food), this year the world’s only virtual awards show relied on a distinguished panel of judges, none of whom had...
Yes, Even Guitars
Guitars are more likely to be associated with tubes and retro technology than cutting-edge software, but that’s changing in everything from recording to live sound. Although guitars aren’t total strangers to technology—MIDI guitar continues to maintain...
The Calm Before the Storm—12 Years Later
If you look at “new product” introductions at trade shows, often they’re more about reminding people of what was a new product a couple of trade shows ago. But as Yoda said, “Always in motion is the...
Advances in Archiving
Recently, I ran across a family photo that was taken in 1890, affixed to a cardboard backing—and was as good as the day it was processed. Will anyone be able to view cell phone pictures 127 years...
Digital Audio Formats: What’s Next?
Two recent events underscore changes in the world of digital audio. The first is the end of licensing for MP3 data compression (or more accurately, “data omission”), and the second is the news that Sony is installing six new...
Is the Pen Mightier than the Mouse?
Last month’s column covered the Windows Creators update, and although there was a fair amount of detail on the Surface Dial, I mentioned Pen support only in passing. However, now that a DAW has actually incorporated Microsoft Pen support,...
Windows Creators Update Meets Pro Audio
Although concerns about Apple’s commitment to pro-level creators are likely overblown—Apple probably has a few tricks up its sleeve for 2018—Microsoft is doing a carpe diem and targeting the creative market. In fact, its third major update to Windows...
Cracks in the Mac?
Since its introduction, the Mac’s share of the pro audio market has been hugely disproportionate to its general market share. It upended the Amiga—at the time, a better choice for multimedia—and the Atari line, which promoted its musical chops....
Touching and MIDI and Clouds—Oh My!
Although Apple wasn’t at NAMM, it chose that time slot to introduce Logic Pro X 10.3. And in typical Apple fashion, it embodied three of the trends that are making a lot of noise in our pro audio world:...
Interfacing with Interfaces at NAMM 2017
NAMM has been making an effort to get pro audio more involved in the show, and the 2017 NAMM convention had more bait than usual to reel in the professional crowd. The new generation of audio interfaces is all...
EQ: The Next Generation
When plugins first appeared, the goal was often to provide virtual equivalents of hardware devices—similarly to how CGI originally reproduced reality less expensively. But just as CGI graduated to creating virtual environments that could exist only inside a computer,...
Let’s salute the unsung hero of modern recording software: test and measurement. In the days of tape, your test gear was VU meters that sorta indicated when something was happening, a volt-ohmmeter in case you had to fix a...
Mixing and Mastering with “Self-Driving” Audio
Here’s an interesting workforce statistic: Far more jobs are lost to robots than to companies sending jobs overseas. But of course, as recording engineers, we don’t have to worry about that; our expertise will always be required to mix...
The 141st AES Anderton Awards
It’s been said the only survivors of a nuclear war would be cockroaches and Cher’s career…but then there’s the Anderton Awards, "honoring" the best at this year's AES Convention. The class action lawsuit regarding the main course...
Is Video the DAW’s Final Frontier?
With a few exceptions, most recent DAW changes have been incremental: We haven’t seen huge breakthroughs like when Opcode’s Vision merged hard disk audio with MIDI to create StudioVision, Steinberg introduced Virtual Studio Technology, Sonic Foundry invented a new...
Fix It Before The Mix
When multitrack tape recording progressed beyond a few tracks, a new phrase was added to the recording lexicon: “Fix it in the mix,�� with the implication being that if some issues cropped up while tracking, you ...
The Ever-Evolving Subscription Model
It seems like only yesterday we covered changes in subscription software—last March, to be exact. But, in “computer years,” six months can be an eternity, and the subscription model continues to evolve and mutate.
Will Windows 10 Take It to Eleven?
One of the big surprises at Summer NAMM was Microsoft’s courtship of the audio industry, with both a general overview in the Davidson Ballroom, and a later A3E session that took a deeper, and more specific, dive.