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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.
in this chapter we are going to look at monitoring and talk about what it is and how to set up systems that make for better monitoring environments. Now monitor being in audio production and in digital audio production is basically the phrase we use for listening back. It's how we monitor or check out what we have done, it's how we listen. You would call it listening in your home stereo setting, but we are monitoring, because we are in a studio. Basically it's listening back to what you are working on. To hear what you are going to record, what you have recorded, to listen to the edits you are making, or the sounds effects you are applying, all that is monitoring.
And because that involves a lot of decision making, like setting levels, changing things that you are kind of committing to a recording, or basically committing to putting out into the world for someone else to hear, it's important that that's an accurate reproduction of the sound that you are making your decisions from. So you want your monitors and your monitoring environment to be as accurate as possible. That's pretty much the whole premise of monitoring, trying to hear what's really there, what's really in the computer or what's really on the analog tape, if you are using that kind of system.
So you really want to set up a system where your goal is accuracy in the reproduction of sound. So we want to look for studio grade equipment, and by that I guess I mean just not the cheapest thing out there. There are lots of affordable options out there, but you want to spend a few hundred bucks and get some pretty decent speakers, one, because you probably aren't going to be in a great room, and you need all the help, you can get with some nice speakers. Also, good speakers are good for your ears, but bad speakers that give you more high range or more mid range, don't have a great frequency response or reproduction, they can really make you make mixes and edit decisions that affect lots of other people, not just you in the room while you are listening, but when you mix that piece of music or that podcast or whatever, and send it out into the world, someone else has to listen to it on their system.
So you want to make sure that the decisions you are making are based off of pretty accurate reproduction of the sound. So let's look at a few things that make up an accurate monitoring environment and kind of the pieces of the puzzle.
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