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September 2008

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The human voice is the most recognizable, and many would argue the most critical, source in all of music. If you get the vocal wrong, everything else could be perfect and it wouldn’t matter. Scary stuff... but not once you’ve absorbed an entire issue full of wisdom from studio owners, educators, engineers, and singer/songwriters on maximizing your vocal tracks. We offer articles on everything from getting a vocal to sound “in your face” and tricks for effects and mixing that make voices stand out, to how loudness affects eq and what recording vocals in surround sounds like.

All this plus cool reviews, our monthly columns, Readers’ Tapes with Marty Peters (now online), and much more! Don’t miss it!


Zoom H2 Handy Recorder   |   Reviewed by John Rossi III

Handy indeed—it’s a field recorder, and an audio interface, and it records in surround!

TC-Helicon VoiceTone Pedals   |   Reviewed by Paul Vnuk Jr. and Mike Metlay

Stomp boxes for the vocalist to correct, effect, and double at will. Plus a quick look at two brand-new harmony pedals!

Placid Audio Copperphone   |   Reviewed by Justin Peacock

A marvelous handmade mic that sounds as distinctive as it looks.

Reviewed and Revisited   |   Reviewed by Giles Reaves

New features in Propellerhead Reason 4.

Once Over—Reviews in Brief   |   Reviewed by Nick Casares and Mike Metlay

Samson CL2 Microphone Kit; M-Audio Studiophile Q40 headphones.

Plug-in Outlet   |   Reviewed by Devon Brent

Virsyn Reflect.

Recording’s Showcase of Sounds   |   Reviewed by Devon Brent, Michael Nickolas, and Mike Metlay

Rob Papen Predator; Big Fish Audio Suite Grooves; CoolSFX Twisted Reality.

Sneak Preview: The Event Opal   |   Reviewed by Mike Metlay

A first look at Event’s new no-holds-barred studio monitor.


Frank Wright on Voices In Your Studio   |   Interviewed by Lorenz Rychner

The owner of California Sound Studios walks us through a variety of vocal sessions.

Laurence Juber Records Al Stewart   |   Interviewed by Lorenz Rychner

Capturing one of the pop world’s most distinctive voices for the new album Sparks of Ancient Light.

Voices in Surround   |   Interviewed by Lorenz Rychner

Mark Waldrep of AIX Records discusses capturing the perfect vocal in a multi-mic, one-take recording session—with singer and band performing at once.


The In-Yer-Face Vocal   |   Written by Alex Case

There’s a science to the art of putting a vocal where it can’t be ignored.

The Equal Loudness Contours   |   Written by Alex Case

Your ears act as a dynamically controlled eq... but you can learn to work with them.

Mixing Vocals—The Basics   |   Written by David Alexander

A primer on getting your vocal tracks to sit well in your mix.

Mizz Lear’s Vocal Treatments   |   Written by Celeste Lear

A singer/songwriter/producer shares her secrets for standout vocals.

The Best of Both Worlds   |   Written by Rick Barrio Dill

Part 3 of our series on cross-genre production tricks brings electronica’s vocoder and talkbox effects into a funk/rock setting.

Recording’s Drum Column   |   Written by Marc Urselli

Major-studio miking techniques, and how to scale them down to your rig.

DAW Details   |   Written by Bob Emmet

Optimizing your DAW for peak performance—a little cleanup goes a long way.

Song Production in Pro Tools Part 9: Mixing Drums   |   Written by Mark Hornsby

It’s time to mix... and a good mix starts with a solid rhythm bed.

Recording’s Bass Column   |   Written by Dave Martin

In Part 1 of a series of looks at famous bass tracks, we meet the man and the bass behind “Signed, Sealed, Delivered, I’m Yours”.

Kef America LS50 Wireless

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