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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.

Recording Tech Tips

Blend Clean and Distorted Bass for Better Tone

Distorted bass sounds awesome — greasy, gritty, garage-y, and punchy. But if you're not careful, distorted bass can get lost in the mix. This is because using distortion can increase compression (reducing the... Read more »

Slate Digital Updates VerbSuite Classics

Slate Digital has released version 1.0.7.1 of VerbSuite Classics. In addition to several bug fixes, improvements in this version include: Added the Device Browser Added a Reset Reverb Parameters in the Configuration... Read more »

How To EQ Background Vocals

Few things are as frustrating as having perfect background vocal recordings that don't "sit" well in the mix. If you push the volume up, they start to mask the lead vocals, but if you pull them back, they fade away... Read more »

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 »

Apogee Updates Element Control App

Apogee has released a free software update for their Element Control app for Mac and iOS. This app, designed exclusively for the Element Thunderbolt audio interfaces, now features a new talkback features which can... 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 »

Cut the Mud

In most popular music, electric bass generates much of the punch and bottom end, working in conjunction with the kick drum. Because of this, it stands to reason that you want to have as much low end in your bass... Read more »

East West Updates Play to 5.0.1

East West has released Play 5.0.1, which features the Amp Simulator and Ohmicide multi-band distortion plug-ins included for use with all EastWest collections. In addition, Play 5.0.1 includes the following bug... Read more »

Make Sure Snare Mic Is In Phase With Overhead Tracks

Sometimes, you just can't seem to get your snare recordings to sound punchy. You do all the right processing in your DAW — compress the snare, EQ it to be snappy, but it still sounds lackluster. What you may... Read more »

Thicken Up Reverb Returns with Compression

Using an aux in your DAW as an input for a reverb is a tried-and-true mixing technique. It helps you separate the verb from the source material and lets you dial in exactly how much reverb you want. Sometimes... 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 »

FabFilter Plug-in Updates

FabFilter has released updates for their entire plug-in line. The updates fix the following issues: Fixed issues with macOS Sierra on the new MacBook Pro (Late 2016) with Touch Bar, which could cause the host to... 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 »

Cakewalk Releases SONAR 2016.12 Update

Cakewalk ends 2016 with a final update to SONAR Platinum, SONAR Professional, and SONAR Artist. In addition to numerous bug fixes and tweaks, the SONAR 2016.12 update features the following enhancements: The Notes... Read more »

Plugin Alliance All Bundle now macOS Sierra 10.12 compatible

Plugin Alliance has released version 4.4.1 of the All Bundle, which updates all 73 plugins for full macOS Sierra compatibility, supporting Mac OS versions 10.8 through 10.12. In addition to macOS Sierra support... 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 »

How to Automate EQ to Enhance Presence in a Mix

Here's a mixing tip that can not only help you keep a track "in the pocket," but that can have subtle and interesting textural effects as well. Procede with your mix, as you normally would. First, get the level of a... 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 »

Kush Plug-ins Updated

Kush has released bugfix updates for Pusher, Clariphonic DSP mkII, and Electra DSP. In all of them, an issue that could cause authorization errors and prevent the plug-in from running under subscription licenses has... 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 »

EQ Individual Tracks for the Mix, Then Solo to Fix

How many times have you EQ'd a track so that it sounds perfect when soloed, but when you play that track in the context of your mix it doesn't work. At this point, the temptation is to solo the track again and... Read more »