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Live Sound Month!

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.

Live Sound Tech Tips

Yamaha Updates TF-Series Mixer Firmware to 3.00

Yamaha has released new firmware for their TF-series professional mixers. The new version 3.00 firmware features: Full fader views on touch screenAdministrator, guest, and selectable user accessQuickPro presets for... Read more »

How Many Watts of Bass Amp Do I Need?

Bass amplifiers, even more than guitar amps, have crazy variations in wattage. Just a quick search of Sweetwater.com turns up 20W bass amps, 2,000W bass amps, and everything in between! But do you really need a... Read more »

Got the Backline Blues?

Some performers don't mind playing gigs in which all the acts are expected to share the same backline. Others get twitchy if they can't use their own beloved, trusted gear, and are forced to rely on supplied... 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 »

PreSonus Universal Control 1.8 for AudioBox Interfaces

PreSonus has released Universal Control 1.8 and recommends it for all AudioBox interfaces. The new update adds: AudioBox Series interface support, including new Windows driver and firmware updates for AudioBox VSL... Read more »

How to Get Better Results with a Speaker Emulator

Sometimes when recording, you just can't let your amp blast through a cabinet; you have to record "silently." The mic- and speaker-emulated outputs on some amps can be invaluable in this situation, allowing you to... 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 a Subwoofer with a PA System

It takes a lot of energy to project low-frequency sound. This means that in a medium-sized or larger venue, it's easy for kick drums and low toms, synth bass, and bass guitar — especially low-tuned or 5- or... 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 »

What is the Difference between a Balanced and a Ground-compensated Output?

Balanced connections use a 3-pin design consisting of three wires: a positive signal on one pin, negative signal on another pin, and ground on the third pin of the connector. The full signal strength is received by... Read more »

To Rack or Not to Rack

The '80s may have been the heyday of the "rack of doom"-style guitar rig, with huge, refrigerator-sized equipment racks filled with all sorts of processors. This resulted in something of a backlash against monster... Read more »

Crank It Up, Turn Down the Bass Control

When you're playing your guitar parts by yourself at lower volumes, you'll probably want to turn your bass knob on your amp up to give your guitar full-bodied sound. However, when you're playing loud, especially in... Read more »

Mix Tip: More Exciting Bass

On some of the most popular listening devices, such as headphones, earbuds, and computer speakers, the ability to reproduce bass is severely limited, and too much low bass in a mix will overwhelm the music. However... Read more »

How Often Should I Replace My Audio Cables?

Cables don't "wear out" in the same way that some components, such as vacuum tubes, do. In most cases, unless it is damaged or suffers wear from being coiled/uncoiled, stepped on, pulled, twisted, bent, or otherwise... Read more »

What Does the Tube in a Tube Mic Do?

Capacitor (condenser) mics generally reproduce a signal with low levels that need internal pre-amplification so that the mic can output a strong enough signal to survive the trip through a cable and into a... Read more »

Can I connect S16 or SD16 to the XR18?

Q: Can the Behringer S16 I/O Box and Behringer SD16 digital snake connect to the Behringer XR18 mixer? A:No, they cannot. The XR-series mixers do not support additional inputs over Ethernet, which is how the S16 and... Read more »

Can I Control the Behringer XR18 from the X32?

Q: Can the Behringer X32 digital mixer control the Behringer XR18 digital rackmount mixer? A: The XR18 does not have AES50 network ports, therefore the X32 cannot control the XR18. Also the internal X32 software is... Read more »

Keith McMillen Instruments Introduces iOS Support for K-MIX

Keith McMillen Instruments continues to expand the capabilities of their recently released K-MIX 8-input, 10-output audio interface and programmable mixer by introducing iOS support in the latest firmware update... Read more »

Keith McMillen Instruments Updates K-MIX Editor

Keith McMillen Instruments has updated their K-MIX Editor software editor for OS X to version 1.2. The new combination software and K-MIX firmware update for the K-MIX mixer, in addition to numerous bug fixes... Read more »

What’s the Difference between Electret and Capacitor Mics?

An electret, or back-electret microphone, is one type of capacitor/condenser microphone. All capacitor microphones work by having an electrical charge applied. As the sound waves strike the diaphragm and make it... Read more »

Digital Mixers: Recalling Presets Changes the Game

If you play a lot of shows and do your own sound, you know how difficult it can be to sound consistent from show to show. Every venue is different: different layout, different acoustics, different sound... Read more »

What is the Difference Between an Active and a Passive DI Box?

The most obvious difference is that passive DI boxes don't need to be powered. Active DI boxes require a power source, usually batteries or phantom power over an XLR jack. But the differences go deeper than that... Read more »