All Questions

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
56
votes
7answers
24k views

I want to learn how to make electronic music. Where do I start?

First of all, I hope this is the right place to ask this question. My desire is to make electronic music; what I have in mind is something between glitch, IDM and ambient. In the last 1-2 years I'...
49
votes
17answers
2k views

What are the most common newbie recording mistakes?

What are the most common mistakes that new engineers tend to make when recording and mixing down their tracks?
40
votes
7answers
138k views

What is the effect of impedance on headphone sound quality?

Headphones come in various different impedance levels, such as 8, 16 and 32 Ohms. The power supplied by the audio source can be at different levels due to a variety of factors such as being limited ...
39
votes
13answers
39k views

Are there any audible differences between 192 and 320 kbit/s .mp3 files?

I have friends that are very picky when it comes to mp3 bit-rate, and will always look for the 320 kbit/s version of a file. However, I have never noticed any differences, they sound the same to me. I ...
33
votes
6answers
5k views

Any reason not to convert WAV to FLAC and save some disk space?

As I understand the technologies, WAV is a raw, uncompressed format and FLAC is a compressed but lossless format. My research has shown that FLAC files "still maintain all the audio fidelity"src of ...
33
votes
10answers
3k views

As a sound designer, how often and when do you decide “that doesn't need a sound”?

This is a question about personal observation of designer aesthetics and taste. As someone who is hired to design sounds for all types of moving pictures, animations, graphics and scenes, I find ...
31
votes
4answers
368 views

How to deal with the difference in sound when the audience comes in

For mixing in a small church, with cheap equipment, we have the following problem. When we set up all equipment and do a sound-check, all levels are good and the sound is just very good. When the ...
27
votes
50answers
56k views

Films to Study for Excellence in Sound Design

Dear All, What films are good examples of Sound Design to study and take note of? I'm particularly looking for films which sound was used to forward the story with excellent results. Not just using ...
27
votes
4answers
42k views

What does 'Poles' mean in relation to a filter?

Sometimes filters are referred to in terms of dB/Octave (a 24dB/O is a common low pass filter setup, for example), however sometimes they are referred to in terms of 'Poles' (I've seen switchable 2/...
24
votes
41answers
11k views

What is your software secret weapon?

Not so secret if you share! And how do you use it? -=- I LOVE Paul's Extreme Sound Stretch. I used to run it in my Windows XP days, but when I switched to an Intel Mac, there wasn't a working ...
24
votes
8answers
37k views

What is 0 dB in digital audio?

Everyone here should know that the reason decibels (dB) are unitless is because it is a ratio: So, I somewhat understand why decibels are "negative" in Audacity an other digital audio workstations. ...
23
votes
109answers
3k views

Where are you from and what do you do?

So, I've gotten to know quite a few of you at this point, and I know where a good few of you work from. Luckily I've been able to meet up with a few people for lunches and all. Every time I'm glad I ...
22
votes
47answers
3k views

You might be a sound recordist if

You are recording yourself typing right now. You've just destroyed an expensive piece of equipment during a session, but you're OK with that because it sounded cool. You accidentally dropped a ...
22
votes
3answers
480 views

What is a balanced input / output?

What does it mean when an input or output is balanced?
22
votes
3answers
2k views

Quiet Ambience Recording Tips

So I got a chance to visit an old church today which is over 300,000 square feet total with my recording equipment to poke around and see what I could find to record. Not a soul was on the premises ...
21
votes
14answers
2k views

Audio Mythbusting

Since we're all about information sharing on this site, I thought it might be interesting to have a thread to collect debunked audio myths. Who knows what wacky claims you've heard in the past, or ...
21
votes
5answers
91k views

Difference between microphone and line in inputs?

Just something I've always wondered—most sound cards have both a line in and a microphone, and I've never been able to tell the difference between anything recorded with them. Lately I've seen cards ...
21
votes
2answers
10k views

What is side chain compression?

I've heard mention of side chaining or side chain compression in reference to electronic music (specifically Daft Punk). What is it?
21
votes
9answers
1k views

Best approaches to panning backgrounds when camera angles change

Hi folks, I was working on a short film the other day and came upon a re-occuring situation that I wanted to get your take on. One of the scenes takes place in a kitchen. It was raining outside and ...
21
votes
3answers
4k views

Has anybody tried using GIT version control for session control of audio recordings?

Has anybody tried using GIT version control for session control of audio recordings? I have used GIT in programming and it works very well, and is easy to use too. It works great for collaboration, ...
20
votes
47answers
19k views

Best use of Silence in a film?

In my opinion some of the best film sound is not loud or overt, and I've used silence many times in film soundtracks myself but I am interested to know what your favorite use of silence or near-...
20
votes
3answers
228 views

What is/are the first effect(s) I should put on raw vocal recordings?

The main problem my finished tracks have is a poor quality vocal sound. I generally try to apply a dynamic range compression filter first and then add some reverb/chorus as appropriate but I can never ...
19
votes
28answers
4k views

Awesome things to record that you would not normally think about

I think it would be cool to hear about some foley sessions that people have done that involved recording very odd things to get a desired sounds. For example, I did a foley session with a friend of ...
19
votes
13answers
13k views

How to capture very low volume sounds?

A while ago I was surfing some nerdy geeky website and found that a company had designed that mic that could capture really low volume sounds like the sound emitted by the filaments of a light bulb ...
19
votes
5answers
72k views

How do you use gain effectively?

Have read a few descriptions and understand basically what gain is, but I am quite the novice with audio work. I've never heard gain or it's usage described by those who are really familiar with it ...
19
votes
9answers
1k views

An open source sound editor, but not Audacity?

I am looking for open source/free software for casual sound editing. I've tried audacity, I know it's capable tool but really I dont like the interface. Tried snd, can't get it to work. I am looking ...
19
votes
0answers
1k views

Washington Post covers sound design in film:

There's a nice piece by Ann Hornaday with a video in today's Washington Post here.
18
votes
12answers
4k views

Cheap DIY solutions, like using egg cartons

I record and produce as a hobby, so funds are limited. What are some nice do it yourself solutions people have found. As an example, you can line the walls with egg cartons instead of paying for ...
18
votes
13answers
1k views

Iconic Sounds: How have they affected the way you work?

For composers, it may have been John Williams' unforgettable two-note motif from Jaws that got them into the business. What are the cinematic moments in sound design that drove you to pursue it as a ...
18
votes
20answers
2k views

REBOOT: What makes you think YOU'RE a sound designer?

It has been 2 years since the last answer/comment on this thread. Time to restart the conversation and get some more answers to this VALID ON-TOPIC question… Although this thread has touched upon the ...
18
votes
11answers
8k views

Processing ADR to match interiors and exteriors

Hi, I have done some research into this but am still looking for some more techniques to each my students. What I basically want are some cut and dry approaches to matching ADR to a scene so that it ...
18
votes
7answers
661 views

Grabbing hold of one's career arc

After more than 11 years of doing this all day every day I've learned just how broad and deep the field of audio truly is. The more I do this the more I realize how much I still have yet to learn. ...
17
votes
31answers
29k views

How do you lessen mouth noise in VO recordings?

Okay. Pardon me if I sound ranty. I promised myself I would not ask this question, but frankly, I am fed up with it. I record narration as a main part of my job in sound. I have recorded possibly ...
17
votes
10answers
2k views

Where can I find free sound effects?

Free sound effects sites. One per answer. Please make sure that you are not posting a duplicate. If you see duplicates, please vote them down and comment to let the author know.
17
votes
2answers
266 views

What is Mastering?

Can anyone explain mastering? What is it for and why should anyone care? Should I have all of my recordings mastered?
17
votes
7answers
2k views

Futuristic cars

I’m working on an anticipation movie set in Paris, maybe around 2030. Visually, it will be a blend of real shots of Paris as it is now (Haussmanian architecture, old balconies) and futuristic giant ...
17
votes
5answers
10k views

Should I use compression in live settings?

I am running sound on a very limited budget and am wondering if adding some compression to our vocals and/or guitars will help our sound much. I am thinking I would only need 8 channels of compression ...
17
votes
13answers
2k views

Examples Of The Anempathetic Effect

Last night I watched We Need To Talk About Kevin and was really impressed with the use of sound. British sound designer, Paul Davies, did an excellent job of helping the story evolve and, in ...
17
votes
4answers
1k views

So I dropped my recorder in a wheelbarrow full of water…

(I should get a gold medal just for the title alone!) So anyway, I'm out recording the deluge of rain we're getting in Los Angeles last night and I tripped over something and half-submerged my Tascam ...
16
votes
13answers
2k views

How do you respond to requests to work for free?

We all get them; projects that have been shot with no budget or self funded, which have been cut on a friends Final Cut system in a spare room & suddenly they want to finish the film & need ...
16
votes
15answers
3k views

Films which blur the distinction between score and sound design?

Can you think of films where the distinction between score and sound design is creatively or accidentally undermined? In a lot of films the distinction is really clear: score is orchestral music, ...
16
votes
10answers
6k views

Creating Evocative Wind Sounds

I love that video of Ben Burt showing how he made winds for WALL-E by dragging that boxing bag around on a lino floor - see at 7 minutes in this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TSf8Er2gV_Q So ...
16
votes
5answers
1k views

Help for buying shotgun microphone

Many of you might have been in a situation when you wanted to buy a microphone but didn’t find a comprehensive chart that helps you choose. Well, I made one of shotgun mics. More than 100 type. I hope ...
15
votes
15answers
534 views

Monthly Sound Design Challenge…looking for feedback

Update (8/15/10): the first challenge is up. UPDATE (8/7/10): It seems like Vimeo and SoundCloud are a general consensus, which doesn't surprise me at all. I've posted a bunch of info on my site ...
15
votes
16answers
76k views

Reason: Why do my songs sound dull and soft?

Just to get it out of the way, I have no formal training in music production, let alone sound engineering. So apologies in advance if I say anything stupid. I have been using Reason to make hip ...
15
votes
3answers
23k views

What is “clipping” distortion? What causes it, and how to avoid it when recording audio?

What is "clipping" distortion? What causes it, and how to avoid it when recording audio?
15
votes
7answers
27k views

Why is Pro Tools the industry standard in high end audio production?

Are there some specific features which make Pro Tools so popular in high end audio? Most comparisons I've found with other DAW's are several years old and are pretty subjective. I'm interested in ...
15
votes
2answers
4k views

What does the term quantization refer to?

Many DAWs have the option to "quantize" a set of notes. What does it do?
15
votes
3answers
52k views

How to recover audio from an incomplete or corrupted AAC/m4a file

I recorded an 85-minute AAC/m4a file using Notability on my iPad. This app has always worked well before but for some reason there was a problem this time. The relevant file shows up as having 21MB (...
15
votes
0answers
6k views

Pro Tools Problems?

Greetings everyone, I'm making a Pro Tools "Community Wiki" on here since we seem to get a lot of Pro Tools related tech questions. It seems a bit unnecessary to clog this place up with tech issues ...

15 30 50 per page