Chris Randall: Musician, Writer, User Interface Designer, Inventor, Photographer, Complainer. Not necessarily in that order.

Archives: June 2007

June 22, 2007

Dr. Device Update (among other things)...

by Chris Randall

Oh, happy day. Dr. D is now chugging away on OS X, HIViews and Cocoa be damned! Have a look for yourself. What this means is that we're about to enter the Valley Of The Shadow Of All That Is T3H 3VIL In The World. (And by "we" I mean Adam, and by "T3H 3VIL" I mean AudioUnits, of course.) So, assuming Adam's iMac survives getting punched, thrown, and screamed at, we'll theoretically be entering the full beta stage at some point that could easily be called "Real Soon Now."

In other news, you'll note that I put up a little missive on Wednesday to the effect that we were switching over the AD site, then I took it down. Well, there was some other stuff that needed to be addressed that we weren't aware of. We'll be making another attempt early next week. Also, this site here is gonna get a facelift in the next couple days, so keep an eye out for that.

June 20, 2007

Thank you sir! May I please have another?!?

by Chris Randall

If you're the crafty sort, you can look at this page on the Apple site, and it might just give you hives. Big fat hives right on your face, with hairs growing out of them.

If you're not the crafty sort, you'll wonder "why?" The key cause for worry is in this paragraph:

In addition to the POSIX and math libraries supported in Tiger, Leopard enables developers to build complete 64-bit applications using the Cocoa, Quartz, OpenGL, and X11 GUI frameworks.

Guess what's not mentioned there? Carbon. That's the library that virtually all developers of audio software on the Apple platform use. You may not be intimately familiar with it, but suffice to say that Live, Cubase, Nuendo, ProTools, and even their own Logic are all written against the Carbon library. No 64-bit Carbon means no 64-bit audio apps, until all those developers port their various products to Apple's ridiculous Cocoa library and everyone learns Objective C.

Now, it's not as bad as all that. 32-bit Carbon will certainly be present in Leopard. (If it wasn't, roughly 95% of the apps written for OSX wouldn't work with Leopard.) But I wouldn't hold my breath for the next iteration of OS X having any 32-bit capabilities at all. It's not something you need to really worry about right this minute, as a user, but I'll state right here and now that if Carbon ceases to exist at all, it will effectively wipe out indie development for audio on the Macintosh.

June 19, 2007

Various Chandler Stuff In The Pipes.

by Chris Randall

Chandler Germ for 500 racks: As you can plainly see from the picture above, there are at least 3 Germanium mic pres now existing in the world. No price yet, but I would imagine they will be about $600. Chandler website, but there's nothing there about these.

Chandler Germanius Maximus: Also coming from Chandler is the new germanium-series channel strip. This is more my speed, as I don't particularly think the 500-series stuff is too good a deal, from a strictly cost-per-channel viewpoint. This bad boy is a Germ pre, a Germ comp, and a Germ EQ, all in one tasty blue-n-yellow rack space. Again, no info on the Chandler site, but Wade put up a teaser and such on Gearslutz, which you can read here. Word to the wise: the vast majority of that thread is about the name of the box. How this affects the actual unit is utterly beyond me. What's even funnier are some of the suggestions. One fellow who doesn't like "Germanius Maximus" suggested that Wade consider "Germanium Winkler" as a reasonable substitute via a 3-paragraph post. Seriously. I shit you not.

Anywho, it'll be $3500 or thereabouts, but you get a lot of kit for the money. One of these and an SSL E Channel, and you're made in the shade for whatever might come down the pike. Unless you're in to that whole stereo thing, in which case you need two. Personally, I think that's just a fad.

June 17, 2007

Postulatin' on a hypothesis...

by Chris Randall

Okay, here's an interesting challenge. Say you had US$2000 to spend, and you wanted to make an analog recording studio with at least 8 tracks of recording. What gear would you choose? Mixing isn't necessary; only recording. And let's assume you already have monitors, microphones and cables. Just the console (if necessary), deck, pres (if necessary), comps, etc.

T3H VERDICT: Yes, of course it is. You have to get a little lucky with your gear finds, but you shouldn't have any real trouble putting together a console and deck for $2K that will record music fine. That is, assuming your songs don't suck in the first place. If they do, that can't be helped.

It is worth noting that I arrived at this conclusion on my own. If you read this thread, the _actual_ verdict is apparently the old maxim "opinions are like assholes, etc."

June 17, 2007

Xtreme DIY ftw...

by Chris Randall

Sometimes you see a DIY project and you're just like "are you fucking kidding me? This is one such, for sure. This dude's MIDIbox SID is a DIY synth the way that an Aston Martin Vanquish is a car. I mean, like, fuck. Eight (as in "the number after seven") 6582 SID chips for four stereo (as in "mono times two") channels of audio, a nice FPE panel, and the same number of LEDs as any random sign in Times Square.

The posting on the MIDIbox site is here, wherein you will find many more pictures, and some construction details from the maker, one Wilba. There is more technical info than you could possibly need (unless you were building one) here, and god bless if you've got something like this in the oven. For those of idle curiosity, Wilba says he spent just shy of US$700 making this unit. I've spent much more money on way shittier pieces of hardware (hello, Soundcraft, I'm talking about you!) but even so, this one is over my head. All that said, kind of a shame that it probably sounds like eight SID chips.


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