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“I just make sure that the sound that is being recorded is as close to the sound I want as possible. I don’t want to rely on the engineers to monkey around with the eq afterwards—unless it’s an effect that you’re trying to get.”- Leon Redbone

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The Magazine

September 2014

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In our September 2014 issue, we return to a very popular topic with our audience of recording musicians: improving our studios! Whether its upgrading acoustic treatments, dialing in our monitors for the best possible sound, or adjusting ergonomics so our studio work is fast and successful, we are always on the lookout for products, tips and techniques that improve our music workspace, and this issue is packed full of them.

API's amazing new studio controller/mixer, The BOX, takes pride of place in the August issue, with an intensive hands-on report from Paul Vnuk Jr. We bring you a careful listen to ADAM Audio's improved A5X monitors, and look at two of M-Audio's latest speaker designs. New headphones from Samson, both open and closed designs, are under review, and looking at routing audio to and from your DAW and between different speakers, we have reviews of Focusrite's newest audio interface and an updated monitor controller from PreSonus. We round out the issue with reviews of a flexible new mic preamp from Sonic Farm and of beautiful mics from Pearl Lab and Pearlman Microphones.

There are many ways to get the most out of a space, and we are lucky to have several excellent recording musicians with experience in the trenches maximizing efficiency and sonic results sharing their expertise with us this month. Our resident acoustics genius Bruce Black bids us turn our eyes upward and realize that all the wall treatment we can throw at our studios wot fix problems with our ceilings. Michael Nickolas returns to our pages with a blow-by-blow walkthrough of how he got the most from a new studio he built for himself.

We welcome three new authors to our pages, with great advice from David Bryce on practical use of subwoofers, from Malcolm Doak on dodging rookie mistakes when setting up a control room, and from James Lindenschmidt, who interviews Grammy-winning mastering engineer Brian Lucey on his needs in an acoustic space. All this plus our regular features, Readers Tapes with Marty Peters, and more, makes the September 2014 issue of RECORDING a must-read!

Pick it up now on the newsstand... and so you get your next issue early (and save on cost), why not hit the big red SUBSCRIBE NOW button on this page and have RECORDING delivered to your door each month?

Reviews

API THE BOX   |   Reviewed by Paul Vnuk Jr.

If you ever wondered what it would be like to have the components, convenience, and sonic signature of a genuine large-format analog console in your home studio... wonder no more.


We have all heard the term "to think outside......Expand

Sonic Farm Silkworm 500 Series Mic Preamp   |   Reviewed by Paul Vnuk Jr.

Sonic Farm's first all-solid-state design offers tonal tweaks that take it beyond the usual preamp fare.


We first met Boris Drazic and Zoran Todorovic of Canadian audio firm Sonic Farm in our July 2013 issue, when we looked ......Expand

PreSonus Monitor Station V2   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay

Combining comprehensive monitor control with a full-featured cue/headphone/talkback system, this desktop marvel makes the mixerless studio a practical reality.


In the modern DAW-based studio, where the large-format mixing co......Expand

Pearl ELM-C and Priority Microphones   |   Reviewed by Paul Vnuk Jr.

The unique rectangular capsules in these Swedish mics make them stand out with their clear, studio-friendly sound.


Pearl Mikrofonlaboratorium (Pearl Microphone Laboratories) is a Swedish microphone company that was started i......Expand

Focusrite Saffire PRO 26   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay

This audio/MIDI interface offers a lot of flexibility, while assuring compatibility with existing computers as well as those yet to come.


It's always a treat to review a Focusrite audio interface. For many years now, the Bri......Expand

Pearlman Microphones TM-47 Tube Microphone   |   Reviewed by Paul Vnuk Jr.

A modern take on a famous design results in classic sound for the discerning studio.


A few months ago, in our February 2014 issue, we took our first look at Pearlman Microphones when we reviewed the TM-250, which is still cu......Expand

Reviewed & Revisited: ADAM Audio A5X Active Monitors   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay

Advancements in folded-ribbon tweeter design result in a substantial improvement on the already-amazing A5.


Back in August 2009, I reviewed the ADAM Audio A5, a small monitor pitched for studio and multimedia use, and I was ......Expand

M-Audio BX5 Carbon and M3-8 Powered Monitors   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay

Take your choice: a highly affordable entry-level 2-way system or a highly unusual partly-coaxial 3-way.


It's been a while since we've featured M-Audio monitors in our pages, and 2014 has seen some intriguing new designs int......Expand

Samson SR850 and SR950 Studio Reference Headphones   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay

Your choice of open or closed design at a price any studio can manage.


Samson has brought affordable quality to many facets of the home-studio world over the past few years. We've been surprised, pleased, and impressed by of......Expand

Interviews

What Makes Magic Garden Grow? An Interview with Brian Lucey   |   Interviewed by James Lindenschmidt

Having mastered four Number One records recently, from artists like The Black Keys and Arctic Monkeys, this thoughtful engineer is glad to share is ideas on choosing gear and building a creative space that gets results.


Bria......Expand

Features

Four Steps To A New Studio   |   Written by Michael Nickolas

A hard-working engineer changes homes and builds a studio space into two existing rooms... and shares the four critical choices he made to get his new studio sounding great.


"Never say never... but you just said it twice!" S......Expand

Meet The Monitor Controller   |   Written by Mike Metlay

A studio without a mixer gives up a lot more than just blending inputs together, but these handy boxes give you back a lot of what you miss when you say goodbye to your console.


This past Spring, I ended an 18-month period o......Expand

The Lowdown On Subwoofers   |   Written by David Bryce

Whether you're extending your speakers' bass reproduction or just impressing clients, there's a trick to placing and setting up subs for best results.


Audio playback systems that incorporate subwoofers seem to be showing up ......Expand

Ten Tips For Setting Up Your Studio   |   Written by Malcolm Doak

These ten simple (and often cheap or free) ideas will help you turn your personal music space into a place of creativity without frustration.


I've moved more times than I care to count, and I hate it. The only thing that mak......Expand

The Forgotten Room Surface -- The Ceiling!   |   Written by Bruce Black

In your quest to get the best possible sound from your room, things are looking up....


When we think of acoustical treatments for a critical listening space like a studio, we usually think of in terms of putting acoustical m......Expand

Fade Out   |   Written by Mike Rivers

Leave It On, Or Turn It Off?


For nearly as long electricity has been around, there have been arguments over this simple question: When you're not using it, turn it off or to leave it on? Our Editor recently posed the questio......Expand




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