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Understanding surround hardware requirements

From: Logic Pro 9 Essential Training

Video: Understanding surround hardware requirements

Surround sound mixing is getting more and more popular by the second. Videogame sound, DVD audio discs and HD television are formats where people are using Logic to mix and surround. In this video, we will go over some of the terminology and hardware requirements to do a surround mix in Logic. To mix surround in Logic, you will need more than two channels of output on your sound card. All formats that are considered surround need, at the minimum, four channels of output. This means your internal Mac Core audio card isn't enough. You can see the Audio Interfaces video for more information on external audio interfaces.

Understanding surround hardware requirements

Surround sound mixing is getting more and more popular by the second. Videogame sound, DVD audio discs and HD television are formats where people are using Logic to mix and surround. In this video, we will go over some of the terminology and hardware requirements to do a surround mix in Logic. To mix surround in Logic, you will need more than two channels of output on your sound card. All formats that are considered surround need, at the minimum, four channels of output. This means your internal Mac Core audio card isn't enough. You can see the Audio Interfaces video for more information on external audio interfaces.

Explaining the formats of Logic's surround mixing is like giving a history of surround sound. This is because over the last 30 plus years, there have been several different formats that are being used as standards. Officially, Logic supports six formats. Here is some information about the surround formats that Logic supports. Quadraphonic. This format uses four channels with speakers set up symmetrically. Quad became outdated in the later 70s. There is a modern resurgence however with the use of an alternative four-channel format called Ambisonics.

LCRS, which stands for left, center, right and surround, this is a four-channel system with only one rear or surround speaker. It was used to mix early film surround soundtrack, like the original Star Wars. It's also known as Dolby Pro Logic. 5.1 or ITU 775. This is the most common surround mixing formats and the one we will spend the most time on. This format uses six outputs, which are called Left, Right, Center, Left Surround, Right Surround and the LFE or Low Frequency Effects Channel.

For optimum mixing, the speakers must be set up according to the slide. 6.1. The 6.1 format is used for Dolby Digital EX, or DTS ES. It adds a center surround channel in the rear. 7.1 comes in two flavors. The 3/4.1 uses the same speaker configuration as 5.1, but adds two additional side channels: left mid and right mid placed directly to the left and right of the listening position. It's designed for big cinema. Then we have the other 7.1 format: Sony Dynamic Digital Sound or SDDS.

It adds two additional speakers to the 5.1 matrix in the front, the left center and the right center. As with the other 7.1 format, this is designed for use in a large cinema, equipped with Sony decoding and playback hardware. When you're setting up Logic to work with any of these surround types, channel order, or which output talks to which speaker, is very important. Let's look at how Logic handles this in the General Preferences. Go to Logic Pro > Preferences > Audio and then go to the IO Assignments tab.

Under Output, we can see there is a Surround area. Here you can adjust manually where surround outputs will show up on the output channels of your interface. Assuming we are mixing in 5.1, when you select the ITU 775 preset, it sets up your output in the standard way. The Standard ITU preset puts your Left speaker output on Output 1. It puts your Right speaker output on Output 2. Your Center channel is on Output 3. Your LFE is on Output 4. Your Left Surround is on Output 5, and your Right Surround is on Output 6.

Some of these outputs will go to different places. In the Logic default setting, your center is actually Output 5. The LFE is 6, your Left Surround is 3 and your Right Surround if 4. You can customize these to any way want them, or you can use the presets that are already here. Another thing to be conscious of here is that when you bounce your surround mix, Logic will append an extension to your files according to the bounce. You can see these in the Bounce Extensions tab. As you can see, files for the left will have a .l, files for the center will have a .c and so on.

This default is probably good. But you can change it here in case you are authoring or mastering your surround mix in a certain software that likes different extensions. Now that we know some terminology and what's involved in the hardware of our surround mix, we are ready to set up our system and start mixing in surround.

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This video is part of

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Logic Pro 9 Essential Training

74 video lessons · 27990 viewers

Scott Hirsch
Author

 
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  1. 1m 55s
    1. Welcome
      50s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 5s
  2. 17m 39s
    1. Installing the software
      3m 19s
    2. Launching Logic for the first time, using the templates
      5m 15s
    3. Understanding audio interfaces
      3m 35s
    4. Understanding MIDI interfaces
      5m 30s
  3. 32m 15s
    1. Getting to know the Arrange window
      5m 15s
    2. Using the many windows of Logic
      4m 13s
    3. Creating your own screensets
      2m 23s
    4. Using the Transport window and controlling playback
      4m 54s
    5. Using the Toolbox
      2m 37s
    6. Naming tracks and regions
      3m 27s
    7. Learning useful and custom key commands
      5m 18s
    8. Saving and going mobile with your project
      4m 8s
  4. 41m 41s
    1. Setting up for recording
      5m 43s
    2. Understanding Metronome settings or the click track
      4m 7s
    3. Understanding tempo
      4m 37s
    4. Recording live instruments and vocals using multitrack recording
      3m 56s
    5. Playing with guitar madness: Amp design
      5m 13s
    6. Playing with guitar madness: Pedal board
      4m 5s
    7. Working with takes recording and comping
      4m 51s
    8. Punching in to replace bad audio
      4m 51s
    9. Using Varispeed to create an old tape machine sound
      4m 18s
  5. 1h 8m
    1. Understanding MIDI
      4m 41s
    2. Using the Logic synth instruments
      7m 4s
    3. Working with the emulator instruments
      5m 23s
    4. Using the EXS24 sampler
      3m 7s
    5. Building tracks with Ultrabeat
      5m 31s
    6. Using channel strips to select a virtual sound
      5m 29s
    7. Understanding the basics of MIDI recording
      4m 38s
    8. Learning how to use MIDI with Cycle Record
      4m 9s
    9. Using Logic's step input
      4m 3s
    10. Mastering quantization
      6m 18s
    11. Working in the Piano Scroll window
      5m 33s
    12. Editing controller messages with Hyper View
      4m 8s
    13. Working with the Hyper Editor
      5m 29s
    14. Working with the Events List
      3m 20s
  6. 29m 49s
    1. Importing prerecorded audio into Logic
      4m 5s
    2. Exploring Apple Loops
      4m 40s
    3. Creating your own Apple Loop
      4m 21s
    4. Conforming tempo, region to session, or session to region
      3m 51s
    5. Using the new Flex Time feature
      5m 17s
    6. Beat mapping your project
      4m 41s
    7. Importing elements from project to project
      2m 54s
  7. 24m 15s
    1. Understanding the basic editing techniques in the Arrange window
      7m 5s
    2. Tips for editing and arranging
      3m 21s
    3. Editing and merging regions in the Arrange window
      3m 45s
    4. Mastering fades for audio region arranging
      4m 58s
    5. Fixing and morphing sound with the Sample Editor
      5m 6s
  8. 11m 12s
    1. Working with notes and composing in the Score Editor
      4m 26s
    2. Editing notes, keys, and time signatures
      3m 35s
    3. Creating scores and lead sheets for musicians
      3m 11s
  9. 9m 8s
    1. Setting up for a sync video project
      4m 50s
    2. Scoring music to video
      4m 18s
  10. 56m 32s
    1. Mixing philosophies and five tools for mixing
      3m 37s
    2. Setting up for a mix
      5m 11s
    3. Directing audio traffic with fader levels
      5m 7s
    4. Exploring Logic's panning features
      4m 37s
    5. Exploring inserts: Using EQ as a mix tool
      6m 51s
    6. Exploring inserts: Using compression as a mix tool
      5m 38s
    7. Using advanced signal flow with aux and send tracks
      3m 12s
    8. Using advanced signal flow with time-based FX to create space in your mix
      3m 44s
    9. Using automation to create dynamic mixes
      6m 22s
    10. Giving your mix life with automation
      2m 45s
    11. Optimizing performance with freeze tracks
      4m 42s
    12. Using channel strips for audio processing
      4m 46s
  11. 16m 7s
    1. Understanding surround hardware requirements
      4m 5s
    2. Building surround mixing workflows
      6m 17s
    3. Using the surround panner
      5m 45s
  12. 15m 48s
    1. Bouncing down your song
      5m 31s
    2. Understanding why alt mixes are a good idea
      2m 22s
    3. Exploring Logic's export options
      3m 37s
    4. Mastering your own Logic project
      4m 18s
  13. 37s
    1. Goodbye
      37s

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