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January Clearance 2017

Tech Tips

inSync Tech Tips cover over 4,700 music and audio topics spanning 15 years of technological development. Look here to find answers to your tech questions, cool tips and tools for making music, and more.

DJ Tech Tips

Surgical EQ vs. Tone Shaping EQ

Sometimes a precision, "surgical" EQ cut or boost is exactly what a track or channel needs to accentuate or remove a trouble frequency or to control feedback or resonances. But other times, a wider bandwidth EQ... Read more »

How to Add Depth to Delay with Reverb

Here's a method for adding depth to and mellowing out the character of a delay effect: Insert a reverb plug-in after a delay plug-in on a channel strip or aux channel in your DAW. Keep the reverb decay short, and... Read more »

How Do I Know If My Studio Needs Acoustic Treatment?

There are a few simple answers to this question: 1. If it's a room, then it needs acoustic treatment. Not to be flippant, but unless it's already treated, you can assume that pretty much any room being used as a... Read more »

Don’t Skimp On Interface Quality

It's fun to spend most of your budget on "sexy" pieces of gear — guitars, synths, amps, pedals, and so on; basically, the items that you can use directly to make sound and look awesome doing it! But don't... Read more »

Native Instruments Updates MASCHINE and TRAKTOR

Native Instruments have released MASCHINE 2.5.5 and TRAKTOR 2.11 with Ableton Link support. Connecting two or more systems via Ableton Link gives users the ability to synchronize all systems to a common timeline and... Read more »

Native Instruments Updates Reaktor with Ableton Link Support

Native Instruments has released Reaktor 6.1, which includes Ableton Link support. This offers hassle-free timing sync across multiple devices and apps, including MASCHINE, TRAKTOR, iOS apps, and Ableton Live. The... Read more »

Can I Use Unbalanced Cables with Balanced Equipment?

You can — with some caveats. The advantage of using balanced cables to connect between balanced outputs and balanced inputs is that balanced connections have better noise rejection, thanks to a second... Read more »

Bitwig Studio Update Features MASCHINE JAM Integration

Bitwig has updated Bitwig Studio to version 1.3.15. The flagship new feature of this update is support for the Native Instruments MASCHINE JAM hardware controller. The update also includes numerous enhancements to... Read more »

How Do I “Break In” a Speaker?

When you're dealing with any mechanical device that has moving parts, those parts will naturally move more freely when they have been loosened up by use. In speakers, both the surround (the ring of rubber or foam... Read more »

Gotta Gig? Bring Backups!

Yes, backing up your computer data is vital. But this article is about another kind of backup: redundant gear, so that if something goes wrong, you're not out of commission. Today's gear is undeniably solid and... Read more »

How to Prepare for an Outdoor Gig

You already know that an outdoor gig has no walls or ceiling. The main effect that walls have is that they contain the soundwaves you project. Without walls, you may find that your amps don't project nearly as far... Read more »

The Importance of Your Workspace When Recording

No, this isn't a tip about applying feng shui to your studio. There's a lot out there on the acoustic properties of a good studio, but let's talk a bit about the ergonomic properties that will help you get the most... Read more »

What Can’t You Fix in the Mix?

We've all heard the saying "We'll fix it in the mix" — the idea being that if a performance is a winner, but with a few fixable flaws, it's best to keep that performance and address the few weak spots later in the... Read more »

Ableton Releases Live 9.7 With New Features for Live 9 and Push Hardware

Ableton has released their eagerly awaited update to Live 9 and Push 2. Live 9.7 offers new Simpler Slicing modes (Beat, Region, Manual). As a consequence of the new Simpler features, Live Sets created with this... Read more »

Sonoma Wire Works Updates DrumCore to v4.0.12

Sonoma Wire Works has released an update to DrumCore 4: DrumCore version 4.0.12 fixes the most common issues reported by users with version 4. In addition, a "Show Owned" button has been added to the DrumCore 4... Read more »

Breaking News: Native Instrument Hardware & macOS Sierra

Native Instruments has released the following statement regarding their hardware and macOS 10.12 Sierra: After intensive testing and close collaboration with Apple, we're happy to report full compatibility and... Read more »

Native Instruments Releases MASCHINE 2.4.7 Update

Native Instruments has updated MASCHINE to version 2.4.7. In addition to bug fixes, the new version features: Sampler: New slicer layout, "Mono" apply option, non-blocking sample analysis, snap-to-nearest transient... Read more »

Propellerhead Releases Reason 9.1 Update

Propellerhead has released a free update — version 9.1 — to Reason featuring the addition of Ableton Link support. Ableton Link, introduced in November 2015, allows apps on different devices to play in... Read more »

Native Instruments Releases KONTAKT 5.6

Native Instruments has released a free update to their flagship sampling application, KONTAKT. KONTAKT version 5.6 offers users an updated interface, improved stability, and bug fixes. In addition, it offers... Read more »

Creative Recording: Mic Your Headphones!

Sometimes, getting that narrow-band, old-transistor-radio type tone is just what a song needs. Many EQ and filter plug-ins offer some kind of "telephone" setting, but if you want to have some fun getting that effect... Read more »

What is the Difference between Word Clock and Clock Sync?

Every digital device has an internal clock that determines when each sample should be captured (recorded) or reconstructed (replayed). This is the "word clock" — a digital clock that governs the sample rate of... Read more »

How to Use Auto-panning for “Pseudo-stereo” Effects

If you have a mono sound that you wish to subtly spread across the stereo field, one creative trick is to use an auto-panner plug-in, such as Soundtoys PanMan, which lets you automatically pan a mono signal back and... Read more »

What is True Stereo versus Pseudo-stereo?

In terms of effects and processors, there are a number of terms that can apply to the "stereo-ness" of the signal. Consider these definitions: True Stereo — The stereo signal consists of two related channels... Read more »

What is the Difference Between Active and Passive Speakers?

The difference is that an active speaker has built-in active (electrically powered, battery or external AC) electronics, such as an active crossover and/or a built-in power amp. A passive speaker, on the other hand... Read more »