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Wednesday, December 30, 2015


This is not a joke! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Oo2H-W7d6A

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Staying In Tune

The Pano Tuner for iOS and Android is a free chromatic tuner that uses the microphone on your smart phone to let you know what pitch you're playing (both note name and Hz). You'll always have a tuner with you as long as you've got your phone.

There's a paid version ($1.99) but I couldn't find any info on what the "upgrade" adds. My wife uses the app dozens of times a day to keep her ukulele in tune. It works better than the clip on tuner she used before the Pano Tuner app.

The app works on any instrument. If a band has someone playing a non-tuneable instrument (for example, a xylophone or an old piano with old strings) that is not tuned to A-440, You can record the xylophone/piano playing what should be an A-440 and the app will set its A to the same freq as the xylophone/piano. Then the rest of the band can use the tuner to tune their instruments to match the xylophone/piano. 

Pretty cool app!

Friday, January 2, 2015

Here's to Future Sound Effects Designers

You have been around at a time when sound effects cannot get any louder. If you look at a waveform of many modern sound effects, the waveform covers the screen. When working on the sound for the pistol in Wrack, I decided to use a part of numerous gunshot effects I had. But first, this ....

Do you like to travel? Are you interested in creating sound effects? OK. Start travelling for the purpose of collecting raw sounds for your own sound effects library. Check with your tax expert, but you should be able to deduct the cost of these trips off of your Schedule C "Sound Designer" business taxes. The trip has to be for the purpose of collecting your sound effects. As I understand it, if you do anything as a tourist, you cannot write that off.

But, if you open your ears, there are worlds of sound effects waiting to be captured. Say you go to the Eiffel Tower. There are plenty of environmental sounds to be recorded. Has anyone ever recorded the sound of the tower using a contact mike? I'll bet there are some "unworldy" sounds there. Could you capture the same sound from some other tower? I doubt it. It certainly wouldn't have the same frequencies. Plus it wouldn't have the same "bragging rights."

Making something you love to do a business is not a secret, but lots of people don't yet know about it.

Check out the possibilities!

.... Back to the Wrack pistol. What I did was take my own and stock recordings of guns firing (not just pistols). There are twenty-one different pistol sounds layered into the one effect. There's one lightning effect (recorded during a Florida thunderstorm). There's a bit of cannon fire, too. I used no compression and was careful not to add too much of any single sound. The waveform is recognizable if you look at typical single pistol audio waveforms.

Sometimes you have to use compression, but I prefer not to if I can get away with it.

Now, take a trip for the purpose of recording some new raw material for your sound effects.