July 12, 2009

Building the pod – episode 135

This week, a couple of listener e-mails answered.
For those wanting to hack into their registry for import/export of keyboard shortcuts, the address you’re looking for is:


For anyone wanting to learn more about Mastering, Brad Blackwood’s forum is here.

Then, a quick look at the Quick Filter.

March 15, 2009

Sine Language – episode 108

This week, I discuss a couple of e-mails traded back and forth between myself and Karl Cooper, who asked about all the usual suspects…. tracking levels, compression, signal chains etc.
Which of course led me to talking (again) about this thread at prosoundweb.com :)
Next up, in an effort to get further through the backlog of Christmas/New Year e-mails, I cover another message from My Man in Hollywood, this time responding to some of Jim Addie’s comments from a previous episode (is this getting convoluted, or what?) on theatre speaker systems.
MMiH provided this link to show us all what serious theatre speaker systems look like! Thanks mate.
Then, something a little off the usual beaten path… Tommie Kelly wrote to tell me about his daily web-based comic strip Road Crew.
Well worth a look!
And to wrap it all up, a couple of e-mails from Jim Weishorn enquiring about dither, an oft-neglected piece of audio-nija trickery.

March 8, 2009

Sine Language – episode 107

In episode 107, Rob Scalise gets on my soapbox about the potential dangers of prolonged use of headphones.
My man in Hollywood got back to us with answers to Jay’s questions from ep 106 re: movie audio.
Ernie wrote and mentioned that he prefers my AKG C3000 to my R84. He also commented on previous assertions that my podcasts were distorted, and asked about recording nature sounds with field recorders and what would be the best way to approach it.
This led me off on a discussion of how it’s not JUST the microphone which influences our perception of the recorded sound, but that the mic preamp, plus any outboard gear etc etc also play a big role.
Which then led me off an a train of thought related to Slau’s latest podcast episode where he did a shootout between a whole bunch of large diaphragm condensor mics.

February 15, 2009

Sine Language – episode 105

We’re back!
The new studio, whilst not complete, is certainly functional.
So, this ep begins with a bit of a chat regarding what the last 6-8 weeks has entailed.

Then into the meat of it:
An interview with Nick Dika (Product Manager and PR guru for Izotope) about the just released version 4 of their great mastering plugin, Ozone.
If you are interested, they have a fully-functonal 21 day trial version available for download.
Also, make sure you read the pdf on the mastering process.

Then, it’s on to some e-mail, including a lengthy one from Jim Addie about the nature of VU meters, and the benefits of having a fast-attack-fast-release compressor early in your mixdown chain….
This is rather timely, as I have recently read a piece by Mike Stavrou espousing a technique which is almost identical… and which challenges everything I have always believed (and subsequently advised my listeners) regarding dynamics.

Then another e-mail, this time from another Jim, asking about:
a. external plugin processing cards (like the TC Powercore, SSL Duende and UAD-2)
b. third octave pink noise mp3 files, and
c. audio over gigabit ethernet.

And finally, an e-mail from Ron Eastwood asking about USB turntables and cassette decks,
the legal mumbo-jumbo you hear at the end of radio commercials,
plus some tips for me on geography!

September 9, 2007

Sine Language – episode 071

Filed under: !Podcasts,Analogue,Gain structure,Mastering,Sine Language,Soundbooth — Bruce Williams @ 21:45

This week, a quick mention of the fact that I’ll be doing a couple of e-seminars (just short 1 hour jobs) for Adobe Asia-Pacific over the next couple of months.
Specifically, October 19 and December 7.
For those who are interested, they will be about “Cleaning up audio with Soundbooth CS3.
Remember also that if you are interested in Soundbooth CS3, I have recorded a video training title for Lynda.com which you can check out here.
And if you’re interested in purchasing the CD-ROM, I’ll have copies available soon!

Also, I revisit the old “mastering to -1dBFS” argument again.

Plus, I do my best to answer a query from Bill Burns (at the Security Hype podcast) about calibrating input and otput leves between an analogue mixer and your PC’s (or Mac’s) soundcard and DAW software.

Conversion table for dBu and dBm

July 22, 2007

Building the pod – episode 100

At last!
Just when you thought it was never gonna get here… the big one ton is here!

*** EDIT ***

To download the movie, go to
BTP100 downloads“.

*** END EDIT ***

So, what’s in store for episode 100?
A promo remix in real time, for Rem Lavictoire.

Yeah yeah yeah, but what about the damned prizes, man? That’s all we’re here for!

Oh yeah, right…. ok.

Well, Peter Baker at Beatbox Music
Beatbox Music
has been kind enough to donate a copy of the Podcasting Production Toolkit CD.
This is a CD of royalty free music AND sound effects that you can use for polishing up your podcast!
Podcasting Production Toolkit

While I will confess to not having heard the CD yet, I have dealt with Peter professionally for over 20 years, and he has always represented some of the finest music production companies around… and I have no reason to suspect that this won’t be an AWESOME collection of sounds to have at your disposal.

Audition 2.0 Essentail Training
And to keep the CD theme going, I have 3 more copies of the Adobe Audition 2.0 Essential Training Guide from Lynda.com to give away as 2nd, 3rd and 4th prizes.

OK, so what do you have to do to win one of these great prizes?

Well, this is where you’re gonna hate me. I’m not going to tell you… just yet.
In order to make this fair, I’m going to hold off posting the details of the competition for 72 hours.
The reason for that is, it will give those on slower internet connections a chance to be involved too.
So, at around midday GMT on Wednesday (25th July 2007), I’ll post the details right here.

Nasty, aren’t I? :)

In the meantime, enjoy the video!

July 6, 2007

Hands up, guinea pigs!

Filed under: Building the Pod,Mastering,Mixing — Bruce Williams @ 12:22

OK, I had an idea for the 100th episode of BTP, and it’s fallen in a hole.


So, I had another thought as I was commuting to work this morning.

Remember ep 64? That was the “promo rebuild” episode. I’d be keen to do something like that again, but this time…. hold on to ya hats, people… I’ll do it as a screen capture (a la my Lynda training tutorials), so you can not only hear what I’m doing… you’ll be able to see it as well.

So, yeah, it will be a video version of the podcast.

OK, I can hear you all chomping at the bit… what do I want from you?

I want guinea pigs!

If you’ve got a promo that you’ve built for your podcast/internet radio show/web site/whatever, and you’d be interested in having me give it a makeover, then here’s the deal:

You MUST still have all the component files that you used in the promo. I’m going to need those if I’m to rebuild your promo.

The promo should be no longer than 45 seconds in length.

Next, send me an mp3 version of your final mix.

You can e-mail it, you can send it to me via YouSendIt or some other online delivery service, or you can just throw it on your server and send me a direct link to download it. I don’t really mind which method you use.

I’ll go through the submissions and pick a promo to rebuild.

I’ll then e-mail the lucky (or is that “unlucky”? ) candidate and get you to send me all the component parts.

Game on, guinea pigs! Let me hear what ya got!

September 15, 2006

Building the pod – episode 064

Filed under: !Podcasts,Building the Pod,Editing,Imaging,Mastering,Mixing — Bruce Williams @ 7:11

In episode 64, Bruce completely rebuilds and remixes a promo for the Dead Science podcast in real time. Bruce delivers a step-by-step dialogue throughout, explaining not only WHAT he did, but WHY he did it as well.

Grab a 320 kbps version of this episode right here.
WARNING! File size is just over 120 MB!
This is definitely NOT for the bandwidth impaired!

July 16, 2006

Sine Language – episode 019

This week, directionality of sound (up and down),
does clothing affect hearing,
some bonus wav files for you to look at,
a discussion on de-essers,
getting the right mic,
and the mastering engineer’s job.

Building the pod – episode 053

Filed under: !Podcasts,Building the Pod,Frequency,Mastering,Normalize,Phase analysis — Bruce Williams @ 19:45

This week, Bruce takes a close look at the “Mastering and Analysis” workspace, plus the keyboard shortcut of the week.