Mixing Secrets For The Small Studio


Professional recording engineer and regular Mix Rescue author Mike Senior has just written his first book, Mixing Secrets For The Small Studio. The book is published by Focal Press — the same publisher that brought us Bob Katz’s highly regarded Mastering Audio and Eddy Brixen’s Audio Metering, which we reviewed last month and was written with the aim of helping small‑studio owners achieve professional‑sounding results using affordable equipment.

In the book, Mike shares his own numerous tips, as well as tricks he’s learnt from some of the industry’s top engineers, including Michael Brauer, Chris and Tom Lord‑Alge, Tony Maserati, Andy Wallace and many more. At well over 300 pages, there’s plenty of information to digest, and it’s all been helpfully categorised and split into easily navigable chapters. The book covers topics such as monitoring, including speaker types and room acoustics; mix preparation, from fixing timing and tuning errors to modifying a song’s arrangement; effects and processing, including the use of reverb, delay, EQ and compression; and finishing a mix, as well as dealing with revision requests made by the client. At the end of each chapter is a section titled Cut To The Chase, which summarises all the points made therein.

As well as providing all this information, Mike has produced over 350 audio files to accompany the chapters in the book, provided in both MP3 and uncompressed WAV formats. He’s also sought out bands and producers kind enough to agree to make unmixed multitracks of their recordings available for budding mix engineers to practice mixing with. These are available to everyone, for free, at www.cambridge‑mt.com/ms‑ch15.htm#audio.

A copy of the book has been doing the rounds at SOS HQ, and everyone who’s seen it has been very impressed by the quality and range of information. Available now, Mixing Secrets For The Small Studio can be bought for around £20. For more information, check out the web site below.

Cambridge Music Technology

Wave Alchemy – Tape KPR-77

The guys of Wave Alchemy, have recently released a new free sample pack and here is a summary of what is said on their web site.

Tape KPR-77 by Wave Alchemy serves up over 280 free drum samples (recorded directly to 1/4″ analogue tape) from the Korg KPR-77 drum machine.

Tape KPR-77 contains three pre-mapped drum kit patches for use with Kontakt 2, 3, & 4 and Battery 3. Each kit makes use of extensive velocity layering, round robin sample playback and choke groups which in turn capture the quirkiness and expressiveness of the original unit.

If you want to learn more about this release, just follow this link !

Tape KPR-77 – Free drum sample pack

Enjoy !

Tyrell Nexus 6

Here is a small review of a free synth called Tyrell Nexus 6…

It’s a virtual analog software synthetizer with 2 main oscillator, 1 sub-oscillator, 1 noise generator,1 ring modulator, 2 LFO’s, 2 ADSR enveloppe, 2 type of filter LP & BP available in 12db, 24dB, 36dB per octave, a modulation matrix and some miscallenous options.

The Tyrell is also bundled with a large amount of patches. IMHO, this virtual software synthetizer if great you should at least give it a try !

It support the following OS :

  • Microsoft Windows 32bit & 64bit (VST only)
  • MAC OS X (VST & AU)

Each version is available at the following location for download :

  • Mac-User Download HERE
  • PC-User Download HERE

D16 Group – Nepheton

A few months ago, during the “Winters Sales” of D16 Group I bought their Roland TR-808 emulation which is called “Nepheton”.

Visually, the design of the Nepheton doesn’t looks like the Real Roland TR-808…

This visual difference is more a story of protectionism coming from Roland than a real design choice !

The Nepheton is a true analog beat-box emulation, each instrument is synthetised as closer as possible to the originals one allowing a great flexibility for what concern sound tweaking !

As you already know, the Nepheton is an emulation of the Roland TR-808 but it is not only an emulation… The Nepheton goes further by offering more parameters than those given by the original one.

The Nepheton may be configured as mono or stereo but allow a maximum of 12 outputs assignable… It’s said 24 on the D16 group site but it’s not really true because they calculate their 24 like 12 stereo equal 24 mono… In fact, they should say that there are 12 mono or stereo separate channel output assignable.
Because I’m not the first one to complain about this “lie”, I saw on their forum a pseudo technical reason saying that Ableton live is not able to handle more than 16 outputs per VSTi… Ok if it’s so they should give the Nepheton 16 separates outputs instead of 12 don’t you think ?

Excepting the story of the ouputs limitation, I must admit that D16 Group compensate it well by offering a really good sound synthesis full of analog warmth and power !

Since a long time ago, I relied on samples like the Tape 808 sample pack of Goldbaby and I must admit that even if these samples are great, they always the same each time they are triggered which is not the case with the Nepheton sound engine cause it add subtle variations from note to note…

To illustrate what I just said here are two superposed “Snare Drum” waveforms.

And as you will notice, it goes the same way for the “Bass Drum” even if it is more subtle because its made of a pure sine wave.

All of these subtle sound variation are the earth of a good emulation of the original beast. Somes would say that is does’nt sound exactly like the original and even they are right, each real TR-808 has his own sound !

Anyway, the Nepheton is a really good virtual analog beat-box !