47 votes

What are the advantages of WAV vs. MP3?

Wave is an uncompressed or lossless format, whereas MP3 is compressed or lossy. Technically .wav is just a container format and can hold various types of compressed or uncompressed audio, but ...
  • 2,437
41 votes
Accepted

Programming in early 80s synth music

'In general' is pretty hard to nail down. There is so much to say about this era I could write a book - perhaps I should ;-) Late edit - Let me add a quick TL:DR Hardware sequencers were such a pain ...
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38 votes
Accepted

Do different synthesizers have different timbres and/or produce different harmonics for the same given waveform?

They are not identical. The differences are suble, but often audible. Different implementations of both oscillators and specific waveforms will yield slightly different timbres. The rest of the signal ...
  • 15.9k
29 votes
Accepted

How do professional electronic musicians/sound engineers combat listening fatigue?

One of the most common pieces of advice I hear about this is to take breaks. You're right that in some situations (extremely tight deadlines, for example) this may not be practical, but in reality, it'...
  • 957
26 votes

Are there any music programming languages from after the SuperCollider era?

There are indeed new languages, as well as libraries within other languages. I'm going to list a few that spring to mind off the top of my head, and maybe come back and expand my answer later. edit 03/...
  • 361
24 votes

With modern electronic technology is temperament unnecessary?

In principle, the answer is yes, with software instruments it is feasible to (re-)set the tuning so that you can realize music with modulation that stays in just intonation across these changes. The ...
  • 17.7k
21 votes

Can music time signatures really be irrational?

He's just showing off. There's a few major reasons why what he describes doesn't matter. First and foremost, sheet music is a guide. It's not actually the music. You are always expected to put ...
  • 1,713
19 votes
Accepted

Can music time signatures really be irrational?

I'll give this another spin: Can music time signatures really be rational? Which I'd answer: no, not really. Rationality is a mathematical concept, depending on an exact, axiomatic notion of ...
18 votes
Accepted

Is it accurate to say synths have timbre?

Certainly, electronic instruments have timbre. Every audible sound does! The aspects of timbre that are measurable and quantifiable can be measured and quantified for all sounds. One of the most ...
17 votes

With modern electronic technology is temperament unnecessary?

You cannot even realize "just temperament" reliably when you are working with continuous-tone instruments like singers and trombones. Take a look at even something as old as J.S. Bach's mass in B ...
  • 171
16 votes

How do professional electronic musicians/sound engineers combat listening fatigue?

Taking breaks has been mentioned, and is obviously a good idea! Other ideas: A change is as good as a rest: work an a different project for a while, and come back to the first one listen to other ...
14 votes
Accepted

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 ...
  • 16k
13 votes

How do I become a better electronic music producer?

Learning production is like learning any musical instrument in a lot of ways. You first need to practice a lot to become very familiar with your software. The software is your instrument, you need to ...
  • 2,437
13 votes
Accepted

What are the advantages of WAV vs. MP3?

The executive summary of Charles' very detailed answer is: Use WAV for recording and editing. Use your audio editor's native file format with references to the WAV files to keep disk space under ...
  • 532
13 votes

With modern electronic technology is temperament unnecessary?

It's a bit more complicated than may appear at first glance. Within a single key, if Just Intonation makes the I,IV, and V chords all (4,5,6) ratios, the ii chord will be off. The other question is ...
  • 23.5k
13 votes

Is it accurate to say synths have timbre?

Is it accurate to say synths have timbre? Yes. an identical note played on piano versus a cello can epitomize timbre whereby the material and playing method of the instruments can be heard to be ...
  • 15.7k
12 votes

Just bought HD650's with Scarlet 2i2 solo and it sounds too QUIET

Well, this is not an electronics forum, but I am an audio electronics engineer as well as a musician. I'll try to keep technical jargon to a minimum. The HD650 is a great pair of cans, but it is ...
  • 3,429
11 votes

What's the name of the phenomenon in which upon hearing same sound repeatedly, one begins to hear a rhythm?

This sounds similar-to (but more general than) the so-called Speech-to-Song effect, a musical illusion discovered and described by musical psychologist Dr. Diana Deutsch, whereby a repeated phrase of ...
  • 20.3k
11 votes

With modern electronic technology is temperament unnecessary?

"just intonation better than equal temperament" Judgement call there. When instruments are slightly off perfect ratios, there can be very appealing beating and chorus effects. Piano strings are ...
11 votes

Are there any music programming languages from after the SuperCollider era?

I would still recommend Csound as the best tool for text-based audio programming. It is actively under development and has kept pace with recent advances. One other worthy mention is a library called ...
10 votes
Accepted

Why do MIDI note off messages have velocities?

Note-off velocity means the speed with which a pressed-down key is released back up. This information can be used for at least Rhodes electric piano sounds, so that the keys make a different release ...
8 votes

How to create silence in MP3

This question may not be on topic here, but in Audacity if you create a new (empty) project and then go to Generate > Silence... you can generate whatever length of silence you want in units of ...
8 votes
Accepted

What do you call it when volume is decreased at bass beats?

It's called ducking, sidechain ducking, sidechain compression or sometimes even "sidechaining". A compressor is a device which lowers the volume of a signal when it gets louder than a set threshold ...
8 votes
Accepted

I have the following chord progression. But not scale exists. Is this okay?

If you are basing your harmony off of F minor, this chord progression makes a lot of sense especially wanting to use C major instead of C minor. This is very rooted in the traditional study of harmony ...
  • 46.6k
7 votes
Accepted

Electronic music beats: Sample or Synthesis?

There is no blanket answer to your question. It depends. "It depends" isn't very useful though, so let's try to dive a little more into it. Advantages and disadvantages Generally speaking: Sample: ...
  • 15.9k
7 votes

Can music time signatures really be irrational?

Can music time signatures really be irrational? One thing that is worth noting is that the term irrational time signature uses 'irrational' in a different sense to the normal mathematical meaning. ...
7 votes

Can music time signatures really be irrational?

It’s wrong. Planck time is not a “tick” in the universe; events are not aligned on tick boundaries. Rather, it is a duration that is the smallest that can be measured as being before or after other ...
  • 309
7 votes

How to self-teach synthesizing sounds by ear

I think most people learn by mucking around with synths and seeing what sounds come out; as you do this, you learn to associate certain synth architectures (and certain parameter settings) with ...
7 votes
Accepted

What's the earliest known example of music written for an electronic instrument?

TL;DR Theremin is considered the first electronic instrument in terms of the modern development of such instruments. The first piece composed specifically for Theremin was Andrey Pashchenko's "...
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