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30 votes
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What is the difference between increasing volume and increasing gain?

'Gain' just means 'amount of amplification'. It can be applied at various stages in the signal chain between musical source and final playback. The topic we're talking about is called 'Gain staging'....
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18 votes
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Duplicate instruments in unison in an orchestra

Since the different instruments are not producing the exact same waveforms perfectly phase aligned, there is not nearly a 6 dB boost when the number of instruments playing the same part is doubled. It’...
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16 votes

What is the difference between increasing volume and increasing gain?

In amplification jargon, all volume changes are described by the term "gain", where gain is the ratio of the input and output signals. In a lot of modern amplifier design, there are effectively 2 ...
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14 votes
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How to check the quality of an audio sample?

The only thing that matters is if the sample sounds good. You have to listen to it and decide whether you want to use it. No numbers or waveforms or analysis programs are going to tell you whether ...
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13 votes

When does audio latency matter and not matter?

Apparently the AES wondered the same at some point and did this study: http://lsbaudio.com/publications/AES_Latency.pdf They had a sample comprising of different instrumentalists give a subjective ...
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13 votes

Transfering audio recordings from reel-to-reel to PC

With a USB soundcard. If you don't need a microphone input, there are several pretty solid USB soundcards in quite affordable price range with line-level inputs to be had on the second-hand market. ...
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  • 131
13 votes
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how to protect music against Shazam-recognition?

In short, as @Some_Guy suggested, making a small time dilation might work. Shazam made music recognition possible by generating "sound fingerprints" of small portions of an audio segment, and compare ...
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12 votes
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Mac vs PC for music production

This has been a raging debate for the past 30 years or so. There has been a healthy competition between the two platforms in an effort to corner a large segment of the market share. In the ...
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10 votes

What is the difference between increasing volume and increasing gain?

Electrical engineer here. Gain is the ratio of the output signal magnitude to the input signal magnitude of an amplifier. In idealized circuits, as you turn the gain up, you increase this ratio and ...
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  • 291
8 votes

Audio Interfaces: How to determine minimum requirements?

Your 'minimum requirements' are "Does it have enough plugs, sockets & knobs to do what I need?" After that you tend to get what you pay for, but on a logarithmic scale… ie twice as good ...
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8 votes
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How much would cable quality affect the audio quality coming from a microphone to a laptop?

Audio cables - don't believe the hype! I'd say the difference between a $2 cable & a $25 cable would be completely & utterly undetectable. Your laptop's DACs will lose more than the cable ever ...
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7 votes

Mac vs PC for music production

One thing that no one has mentioned yet (I think) is the audio driver. On Windows, to get multiple audio drivers you either need to use the windows driver, which in general doesn't work very well ...
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7 votes

What is the difference between increasing volume and increasing gain?

It's as I said in the comment: Gain is referring to the input, volume to the output. Volume is how loud the OUTPUT of the channel or amp is. It controls loudness, not tone. Gain is how loud the ...
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7 votes

How can some USB 2.0 audio interfaces support phantom power through USB alone?

Some work, some not. Creating 48V from 5V is done by a converter. Well-known technology but can be tricky to not induce noise in sensitive audio signals. Back of the envelope calculation: P48 should ...
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6 votes
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Should I buy an Audio Interface for USB microphone?

Should I buy an audio interface to support my AT2020USB mic? Is it necessary to buy it... If you keep the existing microphone, than no. The primary purpose of an audio interface is to convert an ...
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6 votes
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Why do people use a microphone to record an electric guitar

Yes, in a way it would indeed be "easier", as long as there is a line output on the amp. The reason for using a microphone when recording an amplified electric guitar is that the speaker is a ...
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  • 1,417
6 votes

Is it possible to connect a 65 twin reverb reissue to an audio interface?

The best way to record an amp like that would be to put a mic in front of it and connect the mic to the interface. The second best way would be to use a speaker simulator/DI that can be inserted in ...
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  • 50.9k
6 votes

How to check the quality of an audio sample?

While the ultimate indicator of quality is what sounds best. If you're looking for the "cleanest" sound, there are a few things you should look for. Typically, you want to find audio files in ...
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6 votes

Duplicate instruments in unison in an orchestra

In brief, certainly one reason for multiple instruments in unison is to achieve greater total signal (sound) power output. In detail, 1) Two instruments will not add coherently, so the power ...
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6 votes
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Is there a way to balance the panning of an audio file?

I figured it out! 👏 In the left inspector channel strip (this is where you will find your plugins), select "Gain" ("Stereo", not "Dual Mono"). When you receive the Gain ...
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6 votes
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What is a listener's typical audible angular resolution?

The human brain has several different ways to localize sound depending on the pitch and the direction of the sound. These include not only volume difference between ears, but also timing difference ...
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5 votes
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Two MIDI files generated by Lilypond output the same audio

Their documentation at http://www.lilypond.org/doc/v2.18/Documentation/learning/accidentals-and-key-signatures (in the section Warning: key signatures and pitches) states key signature only affects ...
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5 votes

When does audio latency matter and not matter?

I can only speak from my own experience as an electronic live musician. The ms values are what I read in my computer software. I don't know how accurate it is, but they are replicated across multiple ...
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5 votes

Sound processing - get one track per instrument/voice automatically

I have previously referred to this as "The holy grail of the misinformed". It cannot be done. You cannot un-bake a cake. You may have some small success at removing/isolating anything in the centre ...
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  • 22.5k
5 votes
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Using both outputs (internal speakers and headphones) on digital pianos

I can see two solutions. 1) not using the inbuilt speakers. Add monitor speakers instead (speakers aimed at the musicians, with a mix helping with the performance). It is not unusual to want to ...
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5 votes
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Is there any reason not to use TRS cables for typically TS applications?

No, for a small studio, other than the cost difference, you can use TRS in the place of TS cables. When you start looking at cable runs over around six meters (20 feet) you can start seeing some ...
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5 votes

How to check the quality of an audio sample?

While everyone is rightfully emphasizing that the sound is, at the end of the day, the only important metric, there are still a few basic technical things to look out for: Lossy vs. lossless: given ...
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  • 150
5 votes

How can some USB 2.0 audio interfaces support phantom power through USB alone?

It's possibly a measure of the unit's internal power-efficiency. If the interface needs most of the power for itself, then it doesn't have enough to spare for phantom too. I have never had any issues ...
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  • 22.5k

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