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Whether one is producing music, podcasts, game sounds, or film sound effects, Digital Audio Principles provides the tips and techniques that will make the project a success. Author Dave Schroeder explains the basics of digital audio production techniques and covers the essential hardware and software. He also discusses sound theory, frequency response, the range of human hearing, and dynamic range.
Finally, I just want to talk a little bit about some of the other types of software that are out there. There are a lot of pieces of software that are designed for music or audio-related tasks. They don't fall into the categories that we've been talking about, but they're really useful and worth knowing about. And based on what your objectives are, a lot of these will make things a lot simpler and more efficient. Sometimes the bigger software might have some of these capabilities built in, but sometimes a stand-alone device makes things more efficient. There are also a lot of types of software that you won't find built into the different types that we've just looked at.
You'll find that there is are a lot software out there dedicated to notation, which is great if you want to do things like print sheet music or create scores. There are also file format converters, which are really handy if you have, let's say, a WAV file, and you want to convert it to an AU file, or you have a WAV file, and you want to convert it to an MP3 file. They're stand-alone programs that will just make that conversion possible. Then there are batch processors, which do format conversion, but they do it at large quantities to the files at the same time. So if you're generating tons of sound effects, or tons of little samples, or you want to generate a batch or voice-over samples that are going into a multimedia project, a batch processor is a great way to do all that efficiently as opposed to loading each file in and then exporting it.
With batch processors you can do the whole batch at once. Music calculators can also be very handy when you're trying to figure out things like delay in relationship, to things like time, and tempo, and measures. There are also software that's good to use when you're preparing to burn a CD, and it will let you bring in all of your tracks, set them up, set up the intervals between the different songs or tracks, and then actually burn the CD to specific standards. This is really useful if you're trying to burn CDs that you think you might be sending out for duplication that need to adhere to a certain standard.
Finally, if you work with a lot of samples or different sound modules, there's software called Editor or Librarian software. And this is a way of organizing your samples and searching through them quickly. It can be very helpful if you're working with a lot of virtual instruments or samplers. In addition to these types of software, there are other very specialized pieces out there, but sometimes you have to wait for the need to arise and then go looking for it to find it, but there's probably something out there. There are lots of people developing really cool shareware and freeware for very specific one-time tasks. There are also other software out there that can be very handy, things that will let you embed digital watermarks or create ring tones.
There are really a myriad of different things out there, but we can't touch on all of them here. As always, it's best to start thinking about what you're trying to achieve and then go out and find the software that actually is the most accommodating to that goal. So hopefully, this chapter has helped familiarize you with all the different kinds of software that are available. And the best thing you do is then think about your needs and then pick the ones that meet your needs.
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