Touring the DPA Microphone Factory

DPA seems to be one of the mics everyone who does a LOT of live playing go to. Jeff Coffin uses them with the DMB. They are everywhere. MusicTech Magazine had an interesting article about how the microphones are made. Worth a look at.

DPA originated back in 1992, when two employees at the sound and vibration measurement company Brüel & Kjær, Ole Brøsted Sørensen and Morten Støve, left the company to found ‘Danish Pro Audio’, transforming the technical ideas fostered at their former place of work into incredibly accurate and clear pro-audio microphones, including the well-regarded 4060 omni.

Band in a Box 2018 for Mac

Some people think December is the best month. Christmas, etc. Some people think September when Apple events happen. Both are WRONG. The best time of the year is end of May when PG Music releases a new version of Band in a Box for Macintosh. This year they included a fancy keychain with the upgrade.

This year’s version of Band in a Box continues the evolution of a great program. 202 new real tracks, and Video real tracks (though no woodwind related tracks…..yet) are the major highlights. When the real tracks first came out, I was sort of “meh” about them (if I remember correctly, real drums were added first?). But they totally changed things around in subsequent versions. I can’t really remember the last time I used the midi tracks, the real tracks are that good. And it’s worth it to get the update just for the new tracks.

They added a “Audio Transcription” feature to the Mac version that converts a monophonic audio track to MIDI. Haven’t tested that yet. Also added were things like notation support for odd time signatures like 12/8 and 6/8, the ability to fix an out of tune recording, and a redesigned audio editor.

Band in a box always has worked in 4 by whatever grid since the Atari ST days. That is fine as MOST music is in a measure cadence that is divisible by 4 (8 bars, 12, 16, 24, 32, etc). But say you have a song you are working on, and it has a 7 bar phrase. It just doesn’t work as an 8 bar phrase. You put that in Band in a Box, and all hell breaks loose. It becomes a huge visual mess. Not anymore. They now will grey out and the next section starts at the far left again. Makes it a heck of a lot easier to see the flow of a song. Great addition to the program.

Couple of issues though….

Why are there TWO places where the Preferences are?

 

 

 


The other thing that bugs me is that you cannot decide what buttons go where. Like it would be infinitely better for me to have “Practice” be where “Video Help” is, but I cannot move these buttons around. Or even order them. Frustrating.

Other than that, an amazing program. This is a program that EVERY musician should have. From prototyping a new arrangement or song, to practicing, to even just messing around, it is a great tool to have on your Mac. Get it.

Media Management For The Musician

Managing your digital media in this age is rather daunting. A lot of people have ditched their iTunes libraries and gone to the subscription music service model. Some of us still have huge libraries of music. All those recordings you made in college, or those boot legs of various bands you got. Or teaching materials you have acquired over the years. You have a library of stuff. But how do you manage it?

Part 1 – Storage
For me, I’ve always had some sort of redundant system for storage. You need a redundant storage system, be it one hard drive cloned to another, or something. DO NOT KEEP EVERYTHING ON ONE DRIVE…..Drives fail…..then your stuff will disappear. From 2000 to 2008(?) I had a PC I inherited from a failed high tech startup that had a RAID 5 drive array. Basically, it takes your data and puts it across 3 or more drives in a way that if ONE drive fails, you can replace that drive and it will rebuild itself and you do not lose any data. And did a backup of this to a large USB hard drive. So TWO copies my digital assets.
Continue reading Media Management For The Musician

The AKG-C414

If you have read this site over the years, I have noted that my favorite mic is the AKG-C414. I have two of these microphones, a ULS model and an EB model. My favorite for saxophone is the EB model. It adds….how would I describe it…..a little more punch or personality than the ULS. The ULS is a great mic though, but the EB adds a little more. Either way, I like BOTH microphones.

MusicTech.net has a good little history piece on the AKG C414 microphone. If you are looking for a microphone, and want to make an investment in your studio, seriously look into getting a AKG C414.