Fixing Phase... What, Why, When and How

Contrived example
Phase interactions interacting

Often the phrase “Fixing the phase” or “Flipping the phase” (or more correctly, “Flipping the polarity) is used in audio production. What does that mean? Why would you attempt to do that? When should you look for problembs? How do you do it?

I’m going to try and cover these questions starting from the very basics. This includes scenarios without physical recordings, so you electronic musicians may get something out of it too!

Let’s get started.

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Making a Headphone Holder for my Desk from $2usd of Pine

That's it!
All finished

I have nowhere in my studio to properly put headphones. It’s rather annoying.

So today I decided to make some simple hooks to screw on to my desk. I used a small port of a pine 2x4. The amount of wood used is about $0.56usd of wood.

The total cost of tools used was about $4,000usd. You could easily do this with a chisel, a $10 saw, a drill and some drill bits. Maybe I’ll do something like that next time.

Now let’s get on to it!

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How to write a Reaper MIDI JSFX from scratch - A guide for the COMPLETE newbie

Debugging
Debugging our plugin

Today I’m going to show you how to write a MIDI plugin in Reaper using JSFX.

BUT WAIT! I’m going to assume that you are a total newb. I am going to walk you through every aspect of the process including how to find information.

The following topics will be covered:

  • Basic JSFX MIDI programming
  • How MIDI works, and how to find out more
  • Simple Binary
    • Counting in Binary
    • Binary math
    • Binary operators
  • Hexadecimal
  • Basic programming
  • Basic problem solving

The only thing that you need for this is a computer with Reaper installed and a working internet connection. If you have any questions then please comment, I will happily answer to the best of my ability.

Big shoutout to Jon at The Reaper Blog. He brought up this question about a plugin that translated MIDI notes to CC on behalf of another user. That’s why I wrote this entire thing.

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DAW Chart Update woooo

Tiny post… the DAW Feature Chart was updated to add Freezing features and an early addition of Scoring. The Scoring section will be slowly updated to include more fine-grained ratings, but for now it is a wholistic rating. I also added a new sub-category for ‘Automation Tools’.

The Chart was updated for Mixbus 4.3, Ableton Live 10 and Cubase 9.5.

I also fixed some minor bugs in the script.

Things I hate about Logic Pro X and Conclusion!

Logic Pro X
Logic Pro X in action

It’s time for the post that everyone seems to love: when I talk about the stuff I dislike about a DAW.

First things first: If you see anything that’s wrong or know of a great work around then please leave a comment. I will gladly update the post with the information if it’s good.

There won’t be too many images here, so be prepared for a bit of reading and not many eye-catching screenshots. I’ve split things in to categories as well so that you can see the portions that are of most interest to you.

These grips apply to Logic 10.4. I wrote a good portion of this before 10.4, but I tried to make sure I erased anything that was improved with the update. If I missed something then that’s mea culpa, so please correct me.

Oh right, and this is the last post in the series! My ultimate conclusion is at the end!

Let’s get on it.

Parts in this series:

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Logic Instruments and MIDI Effects Review

Logic Instruments
A selection of awesome instruments in Logic Pro X

Once again we’re here with a new review! I’m doing all of the Instruments and MIDI Effects in Logic Pro X. Just like the Logic Effects review I’m going to split these in to categories.

  • Fantastic - These are plugins that I think would be an excellent value to purchase if possible. Likewise, they compare favourably with third-party plugins on the market.
  • Sufficient - Sufficient get the job done without much hassle. There may be no fancy extra features like some third-party competitors, or maybe the DAW version is missing some common feature, but nevertheless it’s enough to get the job done.
  • Flawed - As the name implies, these plugins have some sort of flaw. I would suggest replacing these with a third-party product.

Many of the plugins are vectorized for clean resizing and retina screens. I’ve marked the non-vectorized models as of Logic 10.4.

The MIDI Effects are all excellent and will have their own section. You can assume that all of these are ‘Fantastic’.

There will be a total rating for everything included though, and that rating is…

Spoiler - Overall rating:

Parts in this series:

NOTE - I wrote this post in a different editor than I’ve been using the last ~9 months. A post is coming up on that in the future, but if you see any random ~~/j:s4k looking characters, it’s because my normal mode keychord mapping is not configured to my liking yet. But eventually it’ll be good enough

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DAW Chart update Logic 10.4

The DAW Feature Chart has been updated for Logic 10.4, Bitwig 2.2.3, Pro Tools 2018.1 and Mixbus 4.3.

Since the ratings are relative to each other, many ratings have changed. When one product improves, other ratings may be reduced to reflect the relative capability in that category.

Once again! This is a reminder that the chart doesn’t communicate how “good” a DAW is. It’s just a feature chart. A DAW may offer a fantastic workflow that provides all the features that you need.

Let me know if you have any questions!

Cool things in Logic Pro X Part 10.4

Logic 10.4
Logic 10.4 updates

Logic 10.4 is out with a LOT of changes. There’s new plugins too! Of course these are added 2 days after my Logic effects review that I spent so much time on.

So today I’m going to cover 3 of my favorite features in the new update, and the new plugins. When this post is live the Logic effects review will be updated as well. I’ve added some extra commentary to Logic effects review and adjusted a couple ratings as well.

There’s a lot of new awesome things in the FREE update, but there’s plenty of places you can learn about the update itself in great detail. I’m just going to go over a few things that I think are extra cool. So what am I covering today?

  • Features
    • Mixer and Plugin undo
    • Articulation management
    • Smart Tempo
  • Plugins
    • Chromaverb
    • PhatFX
    • StepFX
    • Vintage Console EQ
    • Vintage Graphic EQ
    • Vintage Tube EQ

Parts in this series:

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Logic Effects Review

Logic Effects that are good
A selection of some awesome effects in Logic Pro X

It’s time for the Logic Effects review, finally! Sorry this has taken nearly an extra week, but we’re here now. I spent 55 hours specifically reading the effects manual, evaluating every plugin on a number of sources, testing with various analysis tools, reading the manual again, writing about plugins and editing this document. (I’m totally sick of it btw, jeez). That doesn’t include the time I’ve spent so far just casually using the products. There may be an error here or there, so please let me know if you see one!

This time I’m doing the effects review differently than I have in the past (Mixbus Effects, Mixbus Instruments, Bitwig Effects, Bitwig Instruments, Cubase Effects, Studio One Effects and Studio One Instruments). Instead of rating every single plugin, I’m splitting the plugins in to 3 categories: Fantastic, Sufficient and Flawed. The categorization is decided as follows:

  • Fantastic - These are plugins that I think would be an excellent value to purchase if possible. Likewise, they compare favourably with third-party plugins on the market.
  • Sufficient - Sufficient get the job done without much hassle. There may be no fancy extra features like some third-party competitors, or maybe the DAW version is missing some common feature, but nevertheless it’s enough to get the job done.
  • Flawed - As the name implies, these plugins have some sort of flaw. I would suggest replacing these with a third-party product.

Many of the plugins are vectorized for clean resizing and retina screens. I’ve marked the non-vectorized models as of Logic 10.4.

There will be a total rating for everything included though, and that rating is…

Spoiler - Overall rating:

Parts in this series:

EDIT Updated for Logic 10.4!!

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Creating lists of plugins with Tesseract

DAWContrast
Trippy image processing step

Have you ever wondered how I create those lists of plugins when I do plugin reviews like these: like: Mixbus Effects, Mixbus Instruments, Bitwig Effects, Bitwig Instruments, Cubase Effects, Studio One Effects and Studio One Instruments?

I sure don’t type all that out! I have it partially automated. I have a script that does a lot of this for me.

Let me walk you through how I use Tesseract OCR, ImageMagick and Regular Expressions to do the heavy lifting for me. I will walk you through the individual steps of how I process screenshots with OCR, but not the creation of the script that does everything for me.

This post assumes that you are on a Unix or Linux distro. This can be done on Windows, but I won’t be covering that.

Note: If it’s not obvious, I’m buying a bit of time for my Logic Effects and Instruments reviews again. They’re coming, but it’s a lot of work!

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