it’s all about audio

9 Jul

Well, that’s where i‘m coming from … 12 years ago ( or even before ) i started in radio broadcast … and did lots of things with sound … i don’t want to talk about that work now … i want to talk about some essential solution gear you need to work with your sound.

Audio Software

First of all its the software you are using for post. well there is ProTools a really great tool i really love ist … but its the mots expensive one you can get … and the LE systems are not  up to date ( with just about 48 tracks working at the same time … )

Nuendo is the most advanced Native System but its expensive too … but if you want all the option AND you have the money (or a windows machine) go with that … cubase is good too but more Music oriented… but it should work too (especially if you have an windows machine)

I use LogicPro (version 8 o. 9 is quite good) cuz it’s the best solution for the money … and you get tones and tones of samples, loops, and sound-fx to work with (great stuff … we us  them all the time) … and if you just about to start try LogicExpress … its great for starters.

Well we got that covered …  now i could go thru all the fancy stuff i like or would like to own … but the reason for this is to let you know the essentials of necessary things you have to have…

So here is the cost-effective Version of stuff i know and or work with (so i can recommend it 😉

Audio-Interface

At first you need an Audio-Interface that also enables you to record something with an mic … that even could work both – in a studio-like-envoierment for some kind of Voiceover or Podcast-recording and on Set as well as an on Location to Notebook recorder.

On thing you have to keep in mind with this „audio-interfaces“ the digital inside is almost the same … you get good quality with all new Interfaces … only thing  that different is the built quality, noise level and quality of the Mic-Pre-Amp and the driver for your computer. In the end you have to consider how professional your interest  is …  you can get good results even with the cheaper stuff.

super cheap:

Tascam US-100 USB 2.0 Computer Audio Interface

Tascam US-122MKII – USB 2.0 Computer Audio Interface

quite good:

PreSonus AudioBox USB – Audio Recording Interface

tc electronic Desktop Konnekt 6 – FireWire Audio Interface

more pro‘ish:

Tascam US-800 – 8 Input, 4 Output USB 2.0 Audio/MIDI Interface

Tascam US-1641 – USB 2.0 Recording Interface

All are good & workable … i don‘t recommend M-Audio or Behringer … not that good of a quality and you will run in some software / driver problems (i had them …a pain … really)

On thing you can use the Zoom H4n as an Audio interface via USB you can even use the XLR inputs  but it’s not made for that in the first place … so you don’t have that much of options & quality to monitor (just a headphone jack . not that good for connecting Audio Monitors)

next part – i make it quick:

Microphones

Quite good for voice over recording in a Studio environment  or Podcasting is a Large-Diaphragm-Condensers (you need phantom power which all the interfaces on top have even the H4n)

i like, use & recommend

Rode NT1-A
Great sound for male Voiceovers, very powerful but a lil explosive sensitive so make sure you haven an pop-killer.

AudioTechnica AT3035
Very open and nice clean sound … pretty much an all-round mic even for female voices not that intense & powerful (AT4033 might a better solution)

quite ok too are:

MXL Mics (like the MXL 2006)

Studio Projects or SE Electronics

ß

Ok last thing you have to have and quite important as well:

Audio Monitors / Speakers

… make sure you don’t get the cheapest option …. they most likely sound like that … and if you mix some soundtrack, voice or music you son’t want that. so in the end you have to know your speakers (so listen to you favorite music, movies and stuff to get familiar with them in your environment and if you have the chance even test some speakers with your favorite Tracks before you buy them … you always should consider powered version (with amp built-in, cuz the amps are 50% of making the “sound” of an Speaker

i would recommend:

Fostex PM0.4 as an budget- / cheapest version

KRK RoKit 5 G2 for smaller rooms
KRK RoKit 6 G2 for normal usage

both KRK’s are very clean & powerful … very universal to use

maybe even M-Audio Studiophile BX5a or BX8a

i don’t like the very cheap M-Audio or Edirol stuff you won’t have any “fun” with them… believe me.

You might want to have even some headphones … but don’t make you master mix with them … most likely its to “powerful” (loudness)when you listen with them and you will get disappointed when you hear it on speakers;)

so i would recommend Sennheiser HD 201 they are quite inexpensive and good sounding for the money (not that cheap of a midrange sound cheap headphones have) and they are quit comfortable to wear over a longer period of time.

So that’s it we got the essentials covered …. in the end its a matter of Taste and money and experience… you can make work everything 😉

Oh one more thing

My “high-end” version … if you have some money to spend … try this: (but i let you know, there even some more expensive options)

Interface
RME Fireface 800 or 400 (i use)

Microphone
(studios we rent have them)

Neumann TLM 103 or U87
Rode Classic II
AudioTechnica AT4033 or AT4050 (i use)

Audio-Monitor
(studios we rent have them)

Dynaudio Acoustics BM6A
or Yamaha MSP7
or KRK VXT6
or KRK Expose E8B

Headphones:
Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro (i use)
(studios we rent have them)
or Beyerdynamic DT 250
or Sony MDR-7509HD

BTW for all my European fellows great vendor i recommend: http://www.thomann.de/

 

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8 Responses to “it’s all about audio”

  1. Jack Crombie 11/07/2010 at 10:30 #

    I love my Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro’s. They sound awesome 🙂
    Nice article.

    Also used both the RME Fireface 400 & 800. Great devices.

    I’d really be interested in some info on Control surfaces, not just for audio but also any custom controlers you use for FCP and your Custom keyboard layout.

    I have issues with FCP because everytime I open it certain keys don’t keep their mapping like ö and ä for goto previous & next edit
    z for zoom tool and sometimes even a for selection tool get’s unmapped.

    Keep up the good work.

    • Michael 13/07/2010 at 20:14 #

      hey mate thanks a lot!

      yep Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro are my control tool to hear everything …. very powerfull and clear / open sound.

      And the RME stuff is very transparent and clear … great audio drivers for mac … no problem at all… and you can hear the difference between 100 bucks and 1000 bucks (for real)

      i guess i will look into that “controllers for FCP” in the next post or so …
      i pretty much use the LogicKeyboard FCP Keyboard layout … and i have that reload issue too … no solution yet :-/

      cheers

      Michael

  2. duckrabbit 20/07/2010 at 23:08 #

    Really helpful, thanks.

  3. Matthew Edwards 21/01/2011 at 04:39 #

    so far our tc electronics desktop konnekt 6 crashes in final cut pro 7. wondering if their is any fix for that?
    any thoughts?

    • Matthew Edwards 21/01/2011 at 04:41 #

      by the way i am operating with leopard. ( not snow leopard)

      • Michael 21/01/2011 at 11:45 #

        well did not use that thing too often … actually just on a one of our composer’s Home-LogioPro-Workstation … so might be really a core audio / driver issues with your system / MacOS X version / FCP Version … you should check with tc electronics support!

  4. John Baker 03/09/2012 at 13:09 #

    Good tips. Can I add one of my own?

    Not many people know about Reaper (http://reaper.fm) which is a fantastic fully featured audio editing program for a small indie budget (even the demo version is fully functional and not crippled in any way). It is what I recommend to film students generally too.

    One of the reasons I suspect a lot of people in video sound post production don’t hear much about reaper (as opposed to musicians) is because there is no import for OMF/AAF which is a common route for sound post.

    Since reaper has become my DAW of choice and use it whenever I can, I even recently built a tool to convert FCP X projects into Reaper projects because I was so frustrated with the very limited FCP X audio export options.

    I recommend you give reaper a try sometime. You might like it.
    http://reaper.fm

    My tool “Vordio” for FCP X to Reaper conversion.
    http://vordio.net/guide

    John

    • Michael 24/09/2012 at 17:59 #

      oh seems nice i have a look!
      thanks for the hint!

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