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Thread: What do recording students need to know?

  1. #61
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    The TOOLS have become more powerful and less expensive. The guys operating the tools have become less knowledgeable and less capable, a lot more lazy, and a lot more arrogant.
    Ex-frikkin-zactly! Welcome to my world of Medical Diagnostic Ultrasound. The wild west show of the allied health professions. You really don't want to know how inept most sonographers are out there and how TOTALLY unregulated the field is. Best of luck, Lynn. You have some wonderful, advice pouring in here in a hurry. Wish I could help.
    "If your nose runs and your feet smell, you were probably built upside down"

  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee Blaske View Post
    ...

    In your photography class, your instructor going through the exercise of analyzing chosen published images was a case of fertilizing his/her students. In that sense, I think a person can teach art. For a lot of students, art also begins as emulation before those who can strike out in their own directions.
    Ummm... I WAS the instructor. In the universe of a "basic" photography class (kinda like the OP re: a "basic" recording class for HS students) for Journalism/Comms majors and electives seekers alike, my goal was to teach them just enough craft and expose them to just enough "art" that they, having learned a bit of craft might be able to (1) fulfill an assignment to go out and return with a publishable photograph and (2) tangentially, perhaps by knowing that same bit of craft, have the tools to turn an idea into a bit of "art".

    It, along with some basic darkroom technique, was enough for a semester's worth of attainable goals for the chirrens.
    Last edited by hbphotoav; 10-02-2009 at 06:10 AM.
    Harry Butler Photography, Videography and AV Production
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  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Robbins View Post
    So we throw out roughly 40 years of recorded music and the artform of recording learned therein and fire up an M-Box and show 'em how it's done?
    Yep, just like they through out those huge horns musicians would play into to cut disks in an acoustical/mechanical fashion once they invented electronic microphones and amplifiers. Just like they stopped cutting sessions to disks once they invented magnetic tape. Just like they stopped doing extensive bouncing from tape deck to tape deck once they invented larger multi-track decks and the capability to sync multiple decks together.

    Nobody is manufacturing multi-track tape decks anymore (besides some limited esoteric activity). It's obsolete technology, and not a tool anyone coming up in the biz is likely to use extensively. Interesting, sure, but about as relative going forward as a steam locomotive.
    Lee Blaske
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  4. #64
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    Lynn,

    I really think you need to nail down the objective of the course or courses to more than "career development or as a college prep course". That can be pretty all encompassing. A lot of consideration needs to be given to how many semesters the course(s) will be taught. How much time will be allocated to this course or program. Is it an hour a day every day or 3 times a week for 16 weeks. If the idea here is a 1 semester course for an hour per day, 5 days a week, then you get a totally different answer than if the "program" will be 4 consecutive semesters.

    If it is a 1 semester course, you get the students for a total of about 80 hours (16 weeks X 5 hours per week). Unless there are prerequisites for lower level math and physics, you might be wasting your time on anything theoretical. If this is the case, then the course would be best designed to teach them a little about the record business (so they know what they would be getting into), make sure they know what qualities people who make good records have (need to be a little bit of both artsy and techie, have ability to listen and understand what they hear, etc.), go through the process of how records are made from beginning to end, and have the group of students make a recording (as a group) to finish out the course. Make it fun, use their talents, let them wear all of the hats (talent, mixer, producer, etc.) and see/use the equipment.

    A course like this should give them enough info to help them sort out whether or not they would like to pursue recording studies/career further.

    If it turns out you are developing a program with several courses, you can then get into the nitty gritty discussed in the previous posts.

    As a side note, universities expect that students learn some things on their own. For instance, at the university where I am a member of the Industrial Advisory Board for the Chemical and Metallurgical Engineering Department, we don't teach or require a course for computer programming. All of the students need to know how to do some programming, and were expected to have it - but not as part of the curriculum. Most students learned enough on their own. Some took a class prior to admission to the Engineering College. You can't teach 'em everything!!!

    Good Luck,
    Greg
    Last edited by Greg_M; 10-02-2009 at 06:51 AM.

  5. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg_M View Post
    Lynn,

    I really think you need to nail down the objective of the course or courses to more than "career development or as a college prep course". That can be pretty all encompassing. A lot of consideration needs to be given to how many semesters the course(s) will be taught. How much time will be allocated to this course or program. Is it an hour a day every day or 3 times a week for 16 weeks. If the idea here is a 1 semester course for an hour per day, 5 days a week, then you get a totally different answer than if the "program" will be 4 consecutive semesters.

    ________________

    As a side note, universities expect that students learn some things on their own. For instance, at the university where I am a member of the Industrial Advisory Board for the Chemical and Metallurgical Engineering Department, we don't teach or require a course for computer programming. All of the students need to know how to do some programming, and were expected to have it - but not as part of the curriculum. Most students learned enough on their own. Some took a class prior to admission to the Engineering College. You can't teach 'em everything!!!
    Two excellent points and worthy of investigating/incorporating.
    Lynn Fuston
    3D Audio

    Making beautiful music SEEM easy since 1979.

  6. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3daudioinc View Post
    The upperclassmen got to come in before the session and pre-sabotage the session. There were rules, like no breaking the gear, but pretty much anything else would fly. They could turn off the phantom power supply for the console, or bypass the 31-band graphics on the main monitors, or unplug cables from gear, you name it. It was hell.
    LOL, what a great idea!

  7. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee Blaske View Post
    Nobody is manufacturing multi-track tape decks anymore (besides some limited esoteric activity). It's obsolete technology, and not a tool anyone coming up in the biz is likely to use extensively. Interesting, sure, but about as relative going forward as a steam locomotive.
    You don't make a record on analog so you learn how to use the technology or the tool going forward, you make a record on analog so you know how to use the principles and the techniques going forward. Those principles and techniques still hold strong and true.

    I can't tell you how many times someone has called me to come over and check out a vocal sound they are trying to record and having problems with, and when I get there the source of the problem is always so easy to find. "But I'm not hitting red" they say, however they are invariably operating way outside of the gain that gear is designed to operate in (and sounds best in), sometimes 20db over that threshold. If you can teach someone how musical this great gear that is made today can sound when you operate it in real-world levels, then you could get somewhere. One GREAT way to do that would be to learn how to complete an entirely analog product start to finish and then summarize what you learn in doing so and applying those principle to your digital recordings. Folks would be amazed at how their recordings would improve...

    Start with the basic fundamentals of proper levels and gain structure taught in an analog realm (where musics will always exist up to its "capture") and then move forward from there... It's not machine and the technology I'm advocating teaching, it's the techniques and principles, all of which are still relevant to today's recordings (or at least they should be).
    Todd Robbins
    TX3 Productions, Inc.
    www.toddro.com

  8. #68
    David Klausner is offline Gold Club Member (1000+ posts)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg_M View Post
    ...the course would be best designed to teach them a little about the record business (so they know what they would be getting into)...
    Well, this is all you need to know about that...

    http://www.illuminati-news.com/00357.html

  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Robbins View Post
    Start with the basic fundamentals of proper levels and gain structure taught in an analog realm (where musics will always exist up to its "capture") and then move forward from there... It's not machine and the technology I'm advocating teaching, it's the techniques and principles, all of which are still relevant to today's recordings (or at least they should be).
    Good point. 3d member Bob and some others were talking about that in a thread over at GS, how many people have trouble reconciling the digital scale with analog gain levels. How so many people track right up near 0 while pushing their prosumer gear far beyond it's reasonable operating limits when 0dbVU is way down the scale at -20/-18/-14 depending on the converter calibration.

    If you teach anything to the HS kids you should probably also teach that all of that digital headroom is there for a reason... and that "filling up the bits" is like mammary glands on a bull.
    Last edited by Lawrence; 10-02-2009 at 04:52 PM.

  10. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lawrence View Post
    Good point. 3d member Bob and some others were talking about that in a thread over at GS, how many people have trouble reconciling the digital scale with analog gain levels. How so many people track right up near 0 while pushing their prosumer gear far beyond it's reasonable operating limits when 0dbVU is way down the scale at -20/-18/-14 depending on the converter calibration.

    If you teach anything to the HS kids you should probably also teach that all of that digital headroom is there for a reason... and that "filling up the bits" is like mammary glands on a bull.
    Along the same lines, digital makes it very possible to do some very un-musical compression. I worked with a guy who was a staff engineer for Columbia, and I asked for about 2 dB of gain reduction on my guitar track - and it sounded awful. When I asked what he had done, he proudly showed me how his digital compression algorithm allowed for a zero attack setting.

    No wonder! I had him back that off, everything sounded fine, and he seemed both amazed and disappointed.
    "Death Therapy, Bob. Guaranteed cure."-Dr. Leo Marvin

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