Talk:Getting started with sound recording

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An apparently excellent page to help newcomers to audio recording. My complements. I will be back to take it back if cannot actually get anything to work. lol (laugh out loud) Seriously I have learned quite a bit already from it. Mirwin 22:15, 12 February 2007 (UTC)

Breaking up and developing this page[edit]

The following is from an email correspondence between myself and Cormaggio, after I first added to the "Getting started with sound recording" page. Drake 01:08, 29 April 2008 (UTC)

[some comments snipped]

Perhaps, much of what I want to express is more correctly put into the "Audio Engineering" course. But the "Getting started in sound recording" is a good start.

The thing about audio is that it goes on and on. It morphs and folds into itself then expands. For example, compression is also a form of EQ which can be used as a form of compression. Reverb is also a form of EQ. Overdrive distortion is compression and eq which can, in turn, be used to make overdrive distortion when you don't have overdrive distortion effects. So, I suggest an outline that has:

  • specific practical instructions, very simple and very direct, click this, cable into that, etc. what "Getting started..." ought to include.
  • theory/explanations that are more general like the current "Getting started with sound recording" page including what I've begun to add.
  • from that, links to specific deeper theory for when a person needs to get more understanding - eg. --theory of sound for audio artists, theory of signal flow, theory of the DAW, theory of effects, etc.
  • specific pages for each topic, eg., specific effects, analog, consoles, digital consoles, DAW software each can have a whole page (plus links as needed) that has explanations and examples of how it's used or applied.
  • Recording, mixing, and mastering. Each are whole specialties in themselves.
  • then a reiteration of the initial specific practical instructions that are deeper including real world examples.

Lastly, links to music theory, musicianship, etc. since these all can have the most profound effect on a recording. The point is, most things can't just be "fixed in the mix" as you will see as you personally get further into the art of sound recording. However, like everything, the information ought not be overwhelming, just accessible as needed. This will inevitably lead to "styles" where one can take a "loop" that is well recorded and make a fantastic song with very little technical skill.

I don't know how to break things up, technically speaking, so I will need some help. I'm confronted with my own learning curve as to how to make the editing process work. I have the "editing" help page up and can access it quickly as I go along and get better. Perhaps we should create the pages each with their own outlines that can get flushed out as this expands. That's my understanding of wikiversity, anyway, making specific pages that can be edited without piling too many topics on a given section.

At any rate, I love audio, I am an audio engineer and I teach this stuff whenever I can. My goal is to make it easy to get to the level of information a user needs, not to glaze over eyeballs or put people to sleep. A lot of my experience in audio is getting to a specific piece of data in three inch think manuals right when I am in my "right brain" in the middle of creating, so I really grasp what it means to be confronted with too much information, yet wanting more information on a specific topic, and getting frustrated. This sound department at wikiversity needs that sort of ability to "drill" through to information as well as easily printed, single page explanations so the aspiring sound creator can have what he/she needs while going into the right brain of sound creation.

Audio, for me, is the perfect blend of left and right brain activity. On the one hand a songwriter "right brain's" a concept then has to go "left brain" to make it happen. Going "left brain" without totally killing the creativity is an art in itself. How we structure this "course" will have great effect on the ability of people to create music and enjoy the process. I find one can't know too much because audio is like a fractal. It's also like a hologram, every bit expresses the whole. Some of the best recordings I've heard were actually created by "newbie's" who knew nothing and just clicked around until they got something really cool. On the other hand, the very best recordings came from those with astounding knowlege applied as the muse required!

Hopefully this makes sense to you. Let me know how to proceed.

Thanx, Drake 01:08, 29 April 2008 (UTC)

Moving on[edit]

I suggest we develop an outline for the 'new' "Getting started with sound recording" page, then determine where to split the added information on the current "Getting started with sound recording" page and make pages for the major categories, eg,. Effects with the outline to include compression, reverb, delay, limiting, etc. (it's will be a long list in due time...).

Here are some notions for the 'new' "Getting started with sound recording" page, all one or two sentence explanations except where noted:

Getting started with sound recording[edit]

Brief Overview

  • What is sound? Sound defined.
  • What is a transducer? Why knowing this is important!
The human ear,
the microphone, and
the speaker.
  • Overview of Computers and Sound recording, the DAW. One or two paragraphs

NEW PAGE - The Setup to record something[edit]

Each would have a brief expanation with a link to a new page for in depth discussion. Equipment

software, other instruments and
how the get sound into the computer,
hardware audio interface
analog audio interface, or console
computer sound card
Tape recorders, similar concept just different buttons to push. One paragraph.

NEW PAGE[edit]

Steps in recording sound

digital vs analog, which one? why? Two or three paragraphs.

Steps in digital recording - just a list. Steps in analog recording - just a list with an explanation at the beginning and end.

NEW PAGE - Audio Signal Processing[edit]

Audio Signal Processing

Dynamics processing

What did I leave out? I took the original outline and used most of it's entries to build the one I made, above.

I suggest putting up the outline structure then filling it in to see how the explanations follow. Sometimes one's understanding or need to know will determine the order of the explanations. When working with someone in person, I look at what they have and are already doing and then go from there. That said, I hope the pages are easy to navigate through. Initially the explanations need to be easy short reads with specific information.

Lastly, I suggest adding a "Try this" example here and there. A project really helps the understanding.

Again soon, I'm sure! -Drake! Drake 01:08, 29 April 2008 (UTC)

Comments on structure[edit]

Thanks very much for all your comments and suggestions, Drake. I think the structure you propose is good - I think there's a danger of putting too much information on one page, which can both dilute the absolutely essential-for-now (ie "getting started") information, and make the subject seem too complex, and hence be off-putting. So breaking up the page sounds good. If this page is really targeted at a complete newbie (which I always intended in choosing this name), then the steps you outline sound good too. And I totally agree with breaking off into pages on specific theories and technologies - I see this as being able to 'zoom' in and out of information - as general or as specific as the user needs. There's no limit to the detail we can go into - there's just a practical limit to what should go on one page. And so if you'd like to reframe this whole area as simply Sound recording (or see also Topic:Audio Engineering) - and not simply an introduction for newbies - then that's fine. Also, as well as writing materials, it might be interesting to explore other, perhaps more collaborative ways of learning and teaching sound recording - I'm open to suggestions! Cormaggio talk 06:38, 4 May 2008 (UTC)