Archive for January, 2007

So Long from NAMM!

See you next year… Next stop, NAB

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EM NAMM Day 4 Podcast

The final EM podcast of NAMM 2007 starts with a preview of Thor, a new synth that will be part of an upcoming release of Propellerhead Reason. Hear about its features and listen to a number of sound samples from the new instrument.

Next up is an interview with L.A. session veteran Lee Sklar, who has been one of the busiest bassists on the recording and touring scene for many years. Sklar talks about his recording rig and some of his recent session work.
The final segment features an interview with Bruce Botnick, a producer/engineer who started his career back in 1963, and who has worked with such mega acts as the Doors, the Beach Boys, and many more. Now an enthusiastic user of Digidesign‘s Pro Tools and its Icon console, Botnick has moved heavily into film music production, and has worked with Jerry Goldsmith, among other composers. In this interview, Botnick talks about the differences between his analog and digital recording experiences, what it was like to work with Jim Morrison in the studio, and more.
Click here to hear the EM NAMM day 4 podcast

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Future Retro Returns with the XS Analog Synth

Boutique tweaker favorite Future Retro is showing its semi-modular XS monophonic analog synthesizer. It’s a desktop/rackmount design with a universal power supply to fit into a variety of setups. The two VCOs can be modulated by internal or external signals. In fact, seven inputs and 15 outputs make flexible routing and modulation one of the marquis traits of the XS. For example, the LFO can be output to modulate external circuits or can sync to external MIDI clock. The velocity-sensitive ADSR envelope can be triggered internally or externally. In all, there are 46 physical controls pre-wired to internal routings to make the XS work similarly to traditional synthesizers if desired. This preliminary info may change befoe the XS is released, so for updates, check www.future-retro.com.

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Vestax Goes MIDI

Which will die first, rock ‘n’ roll or MIDI? Seemingly, each one has countless lives. Continuing the trend of DJ gear adopting MIDI and computer integration, Vestax has introduced its first MIDI controller for DJs, the VCI-100. The tabletop control surface is compact, yet heavyweight and durable. It adopts the two-decks-and-a-mixer format to coincide with the layout of the most popular DJ software programs, and it comes with a copy of Native Instruments Traktor 3 LE. The two jog wheels take their sensor and control technology from Vestax’s pro turntables. The VCI-100′s other trinkets include dual sets of transport controls, tempo faders, EQ knobs and assignable buttons.

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Microsoft at NAMM 2007

Hey, our friend Dan Moore from Microsoft is here to check in with old NAMM friends, spread the word about Vista, and overall, help make Microsoft easier for developers to work with…in his words:

I had the pleasure of enjoying my first NAMM in nine years not having to demo anything, sell anything, yell over the din of guitar amps and control room monitors…and yet my voice is still shot! To make things more fun, I was joined by two NAMM first-timers and they soaked it all up. Overall we had a great time, walked the floor and reached out to our partners, listened to what our partners need from Microsoft, and eventually will turn that feedback into a tighter worknig relationship between Microsoft and the audio/music development community.

After developing recording and computer audio products for Mackie for last eight years of my life, I really enjoyed having an objective perspective on the needs and wants of our partners as it applies to the Windows platform. I feel incredibly lucky to be in a position where I can apply the years of experience in pro audio to bear on what I perceive to be some of the biggest undiscovered business opportunities we have yet to realize.

There are so many compelling stories to tell around creativity and technology, and NAMM is great place to capture those. With Vista hitting the streets shortly, there will undoubtedly be more. I was amazed when I first learned about the new audio stack in Vista, the fact it was completely re-written to be more efficient, powerful, and reliable, and overall easier with which to work for the audio/music developer community. The launch of the Crossfader web site (http://www.crossfader.com) at CES provides a channel to tell those user stories, and highlight some of the great video content our partners have been doing for years.

Overall you get to the larger goal by hitting the smaller goals along the way. Having a presence and visibility at NAMM, reaching out to the partner community, and building these relationships was a necessary first step in reaching the larger goal of bringing the audio/music communtiy closer to what Microsoft has to offer. I am incredibly proud and grateful to be a part of that effort.

Mix Loves Lee Sklar!

I’m sitting here at the Mix booth on the last day of the NAMM show ’07 and Erika Lopez has once again saved my ass by her kindness and concern. An oasis in the middle of a sea of, well you know! It is always a ball to see the gang here. The show is always ‘interesting’ and makes me want to go home and do yard work for a week. I am going to run now and see the last of the remnant friends I have here and then start the drive home. Most difficult part of which is driving by the In N’ Out Burger and trying not to stop. I failed last night and damn, IT WAS GOOD! Take care and all the best wishes to all. Lee Sklar

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Bob Martin, Bob Martin, Bob Martin

Hi Bob – What you seeing here at the show that’s interesting?

The most interesting thing I’ve seen is the Chandler Abbey Road line of hideously expensive, insanely great processors and plug ins.
Bob

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The Bald and the Beautiful


l to r: Matt Ward (Universal Audio), Frank Wells (PSN) and Kevin Becka (Mix) at the UA dinner
Universal Audio put on quite a bash for the press on Saturday night at Catal in Downtown Disney. Over 20 editors from audio magazines worldwide including Mix, Remix, EM, Pro Sound News US and UK and more were on hand to talk turkey and eat some fantastic food.

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EM NAMM Day 3 Podcast

On today‘s podcast, we start with an look at a brand new soft synth, the Keytosound Nexsyn. Available in all plug-in formats, and for both Mac and PC, the Nexsyn features a mixture of synthesis and sample playback, comes with sounds from Big Fish Audio, and introduces a new concept for patch sharing called Netnotes.

Next is an interview with Nathaniel Kunkel, a very busy and successful producer/engineer, who talks about what he‘s seen at NAMM, how to avoid the pitfalls of recording on a digital audio sequencer, and his current project recording the new Lyle Lovett CD.

You‘ll also hear about the new Master Control from Alesis, which is a hybrid of a digital mixer, a control surface, a speaker switcher, and more.

Finally, there‘s an interview with keyboard whiz and Dream Theater member Jordan Rudess, who‘s been performing at the Roland booth with drum virtuoso Rod Morgenstein. Rudess discusses his current projects, the limitations of MIDI, and much more.

Click here to listen to the NAMM day 3 podcast

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Remix Podcast from Day 3 of Winter NAMM 2007

Synths out the ying yang. That’s what today’s podcast–Remix’s final podcast for Winter NAMM 2007–is all about. First up is a demo of Korg’s new R3 synthesizer/vocoder, which is like the little sibling to the Korg Radius. Then you have demos of Simple Minds keyboardisst Stephane Deriau-Reine playing Arturia’s new Jupiter-8V, a software recreation of Roland’s classic Jupiter 8 polyphonic analog synthesizer, and Arturia’s Origin, which is the company’s first hardware synthesizer. The Origin is a digital synth with models based on several classic analog machines, such as the Minimoog, Yamaha CS-80 and Arp 2600. Finally, you get an overview of Yamaha’s latest keyboards, the MM6 “Mini Mo” and the Motif XS workstation. Remix Podcast Day 3 Winter NAMM 2007

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