I would definitely say that my workflow approach has changed a lot in the past two years. When I decided to move from Milan to Berlin, my intentions were to mainly carry on working with my clients in Italy. I still own a traditional recording studio in Milan, I use it almost every month, but after many years of work as a producer and mixing engineer, I began experimenting with different ways to do mixes.
In Berlin I started doing ‘online’ mixing, in the box, with my laptop, Pro Tools 11 and several plug ins. After more than a year, I realized that I wanted to finalize my mixes in different studios, to add ‘colour’ to tracks. I was missing the feeling of touching knobs and faders, and the mixes sounded too flat for my taste. Anyway, ‘ITB’ working has the big advantage to let you recall mixes instantly, and most of all, you’re no longer forced to complete the job in one day or two. Now that I’ve got more time to work, that possibility is very important for me. After many researches, I was told about a USB audio interface with 32 I/O for a very interesting price and a great sound, and that was what I was looking for – The Orion 32.
— Leman Music Masterclass chose Zen Studio Audio Interface for its recordings —
The Antelope Audio professional portable audio interface Zen Studio was used for recording the Leman Music Masterclass at the Conservatoire de Musique de Geneve. “Because of its portability, digitally controlled preamps and links for the stereo pairs, it was the obvious choice,” said the audio engineer David Trotti. The pristine quality of the resulting audio blew away Trotti and made the day of this yearly event.
— Take a look at the comparisons between the evolving technologies of DSD and PCM and how they have been implemented in the Zodiac Platinum —
Santa Monica, CA, June 18, 2014
Direct Stream Digital
Direct-Stream Digital (DSD) is an audio format developed by Sony and Philips for the Super Audio CD system (based on ideas initially described in a 1954 patent). The technology was then later developed by Playback Designs and pioneered the transfer of DSD files over USB connections.
PCM is usually 16-bit to 24-bit (CD standard is 16-bit and 44.1kHz) whereas DSD is commonly 1-bit or in some cases 8-bit and has a sampling rate of 2.8224MHz. The output from a DSD recorder alternates between levels representing ‘on’ and ‘off’ states, and is a binary signal (called a bitstream).
To minimize quantization errors during the ADC process, the DSD format utilizes noise shaping algorithms (filters), which allow shifting of the quantization distortion up to ultrasonic values, frequencies far outside the human range of hearing. DSD bitstreaming allows the SACD players to be made with a simple 1-bit design and using a low-order analog filter during the DAC process. Although the SACD format achieves a dynamic range of 120dB for all frequencies in the range of human hearing (20Hz to 20kHz) and provides an extended frequency response up to 100kHz, most players in the market offer a maximum of 80-90kHz. Continue reading →
Artist and Instrument Craftsman William Close Turns to Antelope to Capture Unique and Unprecedented Recording, Using Natural Valley as the Instrument’s Resonating Chamber
Ever since his art school days in the late 1990′s while attending the prestigious Chicago Art Institute, William Close pursued his dream of building and performing with unique, handmade instruments whose sounds have never been heard anywhere in the world. Now, The Earth Harp, his masterpiece instrument creation of unprecedented physical scale and sonic beauty, has been captured in astonishing fidelity in a brand new recording — thanks to the digital clocking and conversion technology of Antelope Audio.
His new album with The Earth Harp Collective, Behind the Veil, captures the authentic sound of this spectacular instrument — from its lavish root notes to its rich harmonics and heavenly overtones. Close attributes the success of the recording in large part to Antelope Audio’s new Rubicon A to D converter, which was used as the primary mastering device, and its Orion³² multi-channel interface, which was used during playback. “I’ve never heard The Earth Harp sounding so good on a recording,” he says. “The instrument has so many beautiful harmonics and overtones, and many times these are lost in the process. The Antelope equipment was awesome and helped us finally achieve a true representation of how The Earth Harp actually sounds.”
In a simple system featuring one audio interface with built-in mic preamps connected to a computer-based DAW, the interface clocks the DAW since the most clock-critical element of the audio chain is the A/D converter, as that’s built in to the interface. If you were to add an external digital device to the equation (reverb, multi-effects processor etc), it should be configured to work as a clock slave to the interface.
Following that logic, even in bigger and more complex studios, it’s generally best to use an A/D as the master clock. If there’s more than one of these you’ll need to decide which one to use as the master, and everything else will have to be slaved to that. It’s quite possible that there will be audible differences between various configurations, because most A/Ds will perform slightly differently when configured as clock master and slave.