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Microphone Month 5

Tech Tips

inSync Tech Tips cover over 4,800 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.

Guitar 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 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 »

PreSonus Releases Notion 6.1

PreSonus has updated Notion, their notation software application, to version 6.1. In addition to dozens of bug fixes, the new update includes: New keyboard workflowsEnter notes and chords with QWERTY keyboard in... Read more »

Two Notes Engineering Updates Firmware for Torpedo Studio

Two Notes Engineering has updated the firmware for the Torpedo Studio to v4. The new firmware includes the following additions: Arcade mode, allowing faster edition of the audio parameters.Low-cut and 5-band graphic... Read more »

What Is An “Aggressive” Guitar Sound?

"Aggressive" is not in itself a word that describes tone or sonics. The term "aggressive" as applied to guitars and basses has been used to describe everything from completely fuzzed out to clean and jangly. Does... 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 »

Can I Run a Distortion Pedal into a Raging Guitar Amp?

Sure. Some of the most famous sounds in rock have been using a BOSS Super Overdrive, Ibanez TubeScreamer, or MXR Distortion+ into a distorted amp. You just need to keep the concept of gain staging in mind. If you've... 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 »

Is It Better to Use an FRFR Speaker or a Guitar Amp with a Modeler?

In the early days of guitar amp modeling, most modelers did not let you separate out the preamp and power amp emulation from the speaker cabinet emulation. This meant that if you played with your modeler through a... 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 Software Ships with Positive Grid BIAS Amps?

The Positive Grid BIAS Head, BIAS Head Preamplifier, BIAS Rack, and BIAS Rack Preamplifier all ship with BIAS Amp Pro software for controlling the BIAS Head, managing presets, and crafting your own tones.

Does the Positive Grid BIAS Amp Work with MIDI Controller Pedals?

Yes! All of the BIAS amps (Head and Rack, amp and preamp versions) are fully MIDI compatible. BIAS amps respond to both Preset Change and Continuous Control messages. There is no need to change banks via MIDI... Read more »

When to Use a Clean Boost Versus a Dirty Boost?

A clean boost pedal is designed to deliver uncolored, "transparent" gain, much like a microphone preamplifier. These are perfect for situations in which you want to hit the front end of your guitar amplifier harder... Read more »

Can You Use Guitar Pedals with the BIAS Amp?

The Positive Grid BIAS amp sounds great with analog or digital pedals (or both) either in front of the amp, or in the effects loop. This is true for all four versions of the BIAS Amp (powered head, preamp head... Read more »

Should I Adjust My Guitar’s Neck Myself?

Adjusting the relief on a guitar or bass neck is generally quite simple and safe to do. It's something we think every guitar or bass player should at least be familiar with doing, in case of an "emergency" when a... Read more »

Does the Power Amp of the Positive Grid BIAS Head Amp Need To Be Disabled During Silent Recording?

The power amp section of the Positive Grid BIAS Head Amp is always on. However, that's not a problem for silent recording. Unlike tube amps, which always need a speaker load attached, the BIAS Head Amp has a... Read more »

Signal Path for sE Electronics X1A Recording in Video?

Q: I really like the acoustic guitar sound in your video demonstrating the sE Electronics X1A microphone. What was the signal chain: preamp, interface, etc.? A: inSync editor Mitch Gallagher recording Don Carr... Read more »

What Does the Presence Knob on a Guitar Amplifier Do?

It's obvious from the labels what most controls on guitar amps do: the Treble knob adjusts treble (high)frequencies, the Bass knob adjusts bass (low) frequencies, and so on. Many guitar amps also have a knob labeled... Read more »

Is “Play” in an Electric Guitar Vibrato Good or Bad?

When talking about electric guitar tremolo and vibrato systems, "play" refers to how loose the bar is. A tremolo bar with little play will remain in any position in which it is placed. It will feel tighter in your... Read more »

What is the Difference Between Speaker and Guitar Cables?

There's a reason you shouldn't use guitar cables to connect an amplifier to a speaker cabinet, or speaker cables to connect a guitar to an amp. Speaker and guitar cables are not the same. Guitar cables are meant to... Read more »

What Is Headroom in a Guitar Amp?

You may have seen this amp or that guitar amp described as having a lot of "clean headroom" or heard that high-wattage guitar amps have more "headroom" than lower wattage amps. Headroom is a simple concept, but... Read more »