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David M 



ic & Sou; 

For Hobbyists 
Pros Alike 

How to Add Sound 
& Music to Your 

Audio Software 
& Hardware: 
What’s Hot I 

Macintosh Library 

Quick Reference Guide to Software 








Audio Trax 








Book of MIDI 




Cubase Audio 






Digital Performer 




EZ Vision 


Galaxy Plus Editors 






Master Tracks Pro 5 


MIDI Manager 


MIDI Quest 


Mitshiba StereoRecorder 






Sound Designer II 


Sound Manager 


Sound Tools 




Studio Vision 






Voice Impact Pro 


Voyager CD AudioStack 






Adobe Premiere 
Animation Works 
At Your Service 



MacroMind Director 



Paracomp Magic 



Studio/ 1 




Adventures in Musicland 
After Dark 

Talking Moose 

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David M. Rubin 


San Francisco ■ Paris ■ Diisseldorf ■ Soest 

Acquisitions Editor: David J. Clark 
Developmental Editor: Kenyon Brown 
Editor: Richard Mills 

Word Processors: Ann Dunn and Susan Trybull 
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responsibility for its use, nor for any infringement of the intelleaual property rights of third panies which 

would result from such use. 

Copyright ©1992 SYBEX Inc., 2021 Challenger Drive, Alameda, CA 94501. World rights reserved. No 
pan of this publication may be stored in a retrieval system, transmitted, or reproduced in any way, includ- 
ing but not limited to photocopy, photograph, magnetic or other record, without the prior agreement and 
written permission of the publisher. 

Librar>' of Congress Card Number: 92-80313 
ISBN: 0-7821-1045-2 

Manufactured in the United States of America 
10 987654321 


book could not have been possible without the help of a great many 
companies and the generous efforts of the people who staff them. I sin- 
cerely thank the following companies for providing me with their produas 
for review and for their technical assistance to ensure that this book is as up 
to date and accurate as possible: 

Adobe Systems, Aldus Corp., Articulate Systems, Baseline Publishing, 
Berkeley Systems, Bright Star Technology, CD Technology, Claris Corp., 
Dynaware USA, Educorp, Electronic Arts, Five Pin Press, Gold Disk, 
Greytsoimds, MacroMind/Paracomp, McGill University, MIDI Inn, 
Motion Works, Mus-Art Productions, New Sound Music, Olduvai Corp., 
PG Music, Phil Wood Consulting, Prosonus, Roland Corp., Sound Quest, 
Tran Tracks, Trycho Music International, Vo}^ger Company, VPL 
Research, and the Works Music Productions. 

Thanks also to these companies for providing me with information about 
their products: Acoustic Research, Altech Systems, E-mu Systems, Interna- 
tional MIDI Association, JLCooper Electronics, Korg, Monster Design 
Group, and Yamaha International. 

Pd also like to thank the following people for the extra efforts that they 
made in my behalf: 

Keri VJhlker of Apple Computer; Bill Liu and Jim Armstrong of CD Tech- 
nology; Paul Rice, Toby Richards, and Suz Howells of Digidesign; Stephen 
Thomas of Dr. T’s; Trudy Edelson of Farallon; Robertson Reed Smith of 
the HyperCard Development Team; Susan Patalano of Mark of the Uni- 
corn; Christy Gersich of Microsoft; Parker Adams of the Parker Adams 
Group; and Russ Jones and Bill Black of Steinberg/Jones. 

I’m especially grateful to the following people for going well beyond the 
call of duty to help me with this book; 

Nigel Redmon of EarLevel Engineering for patiently answering my endless 
questions about the more obscure aspects of MIDI; Harrison Rose of New 
Media Research for sharing with me his knowledge of QuickTime and its 
inner workings; Kord Taylor of Opcode Systems for tolerating my incessant 
phone calls and alwa)^ displaying an accommodating, good-natured interest 
in this project; and Anastasia Lanier of Passport Designs for her enthusias- 
tic support of my work and for being generous, responsive, and resourceful 
when I most needed it. 

Many thanks as well go to the great people at SYBEX for taking a chance 
on my idea and giving me the opportunity to get this show on the road. In 
particular. I’d like to thank David Clark for getting the ball rolling, Ken 
Brown for keeping it rolling, and Richard Mills for his thoughtful and 
perceptive editing. 

I would also like to thank New Media Research, Inc. for allowing me to 
include in this book several excerpts from my earlier writings for them. 
Additionally, I owe a real debt of gratitude to William Coggshall, editor for 
New Media Research, without whose help and encouragement the long 
path that ultimately led to this book would not have begun. 

And finally, I must thank my wife, Katherine, for motivating me and pro- 
viding me with help and support when the going got tough. And thanks to 
my son, Aaron, for understanding the importance of my work and for put- 
ting up with my absences even though he wanted to play with me some 

Again, to all of the people behind the scenes whose combined efforts over 
these many months have helped make this book a reality: my sincere 

This book is dedicated to my parents, 

Louis and Gertrude Rubin, who were there when I heard my first sounds 
and have always supported me in my varied pursuits 
both audible and otherwise. 

. . .She places the flute upon her lips, 
and as the sunset fades and dusk settles, 
she plays beneath the pale moon. 

. . .The night is chill, her silken robes are thin, her fingers cold 

. . .But music floats through frosty woods 
and stanled plums fall pattering down. 

—Chang Hsien 

Contents at a C lance 

Introduction xxi 

Chapter 1 

A Brief History of Sound for Presentations, 
or How We Got Here from There 

Using Sound in Presentations: An Overview 

An Introduction to MIDI 

All about Sequencers 

Sequencing at the Top 

Sequencing on Easy Street 

Instant MIDI 

HyperCard Meets MIDI 

Universal Editor/Librarians 

An Introduction to Digital Audio 

Digital Audio for the Masses (8-Bit) 

Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous (16-Bit) 

Sample-Editing Software 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 

Sound and the System 


Adding Sound after Transfer to Video 
Production Music and Sound-Effects Libraries 
Just for Fun 

Chapter 2 
Chapter 3 
Chapter 4 
Chapter 5 
Chapter 6 
Chapter 7 
Chapter 8 
Chapter 9 
Chapter W 
Chapter 1 1 
Chapter 12 
Chapter 13 
Chapter 14 
Chapter 15 
Chapter 16 
Chapter 17 
Chapter 18 
Chapter 19 
Chapter 20 

Appendix A 
Appendix B 
Appendix C 


List of Companies 


Atlattia M.M 

Chapter 1 

Chapter 2 

Chapter 3 

Table of Contents 

Introduaion xxi 

A Brief History of Sound for Presentations, 
or How We Got Here from There 

All the World’s a Stage 2 

Mixing Music and Sound Effects 2 

Early Radio 3 

Not-So-Silent Movies 4 

Fear of Sound 4 

Modern Sound 5 

Final Thoughts 6 

Using Sound in Presentations: An Overview 
Voice of Reason 10 

Sound and Fury 1 1 

Sync Sounds 1 1 
Finding Sounds 13 
Music to My Ears 13 
Sources of Music 14 

Hardware and Software 14 
Audio for Video 15 
Helpful Hints 15 

An Introduction to MIDI 
What Is MIDI? 18 
Connections 19 
Channels 19 

Chapter 4 

Chapter 5 

Modes 20 
Messages 20 
MIDI and the Mac 21 
Sounds from Circuits 22 
Getting Started with MIDI 23 
Speakers of the House 23 

All S 3 Tstems Go 24 

Keys to Success 25 

The More the Merrier: Expanding Your System 
More on Interfaces 27 
All Mixed Up 28 
Samplers, Synths, and Cymbals 30 

All about Sequencers 
Sequencer Anatomy 37 

Getting Around 38 

Fascinatin’ Rhythm 40 
Command Performance 40 
Through the Window 40 
Sum of the Parts 43 

Sequencing at the Top 
Performer 45 
Vision 56 

Master Tracks Pro 5 64 

Beyond 73 
Cubase 82 
Final Thoughts 93 


Chapter 6 

Chapter 7 

Chapter 8 

Chapter 9 

Sequencing on Easy Street 
EZ Vision 97 
Trax 101 
Ballade 104 

Encore 113 


Final Thoughts 


Instant MIDI 

In the Background 


Band-in-a-Box 122 

The Beat Goes On 


Out of Sequence 


General MIDI 


Losing Your Voice 


What’s Out There 


Some Final Tips 


HyperCard Meets MIDI 
Hardware and Software 137 
SOUNDtraK 138 
HyperMIDI 143 
The Book of MIDI 145 




Universal Editor/Librarians 149 

How They Work 149 
X-oR 152 

Galaxy Plus Editors 156 


MIDI Quest 161 
Final Thoughts 165 

Chapter 10 An Introduction to Digital Audio 169 

The Analog World 169 
The Digital Domain 170 

Sound into Numbers 170 

Quantization 171 
Sampling Rate 172 

Westward Ho! 173 

Playback 174 

Chapter 1 1 Digital Audio for the Masses (8-Bit) 177 

MacRecorder 177 
SoundEdit 179 
HyperSound 186 
HyperSoimd Toolkit 188 
Voice Impact Pro 188 
Soundwave 190 
Voice Record 195 
Mitshiba StereoRecorder 196 

Chapter 1 2 Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous (16-Bit) 199 

Audiomedia 200 

Audiomedia’s Software 201 
SoundAccess 209 
Sound Tools 210 
More about Samplers 211 

SampleCell 212 

SampleCell Editor 213 
Sampling with SampleCell 219 
More Sounds for SampleCell 220 
Digidesign 220 
Greytsoimds 221 

McGill University Master Samples 221 
Prosonus 222 

Chapter 13 

Sample-Editing Software 
Soimd Designer II 226 
Alchemy 230 
Final Thoughts 241 

Chapter 14 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 
Audio Trax 243 
Deck 249 
Studio Vision 257 

Cubase Audio 267 

Digital Performer 27 1 
Final Thoughts 278 

Chapter 15 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 
HyperCard 282 

HyperTalk and Sound 283 
External Commands and Functions 285 
MacroMind Director 286 
Overview 287 
Soimd in Overview 288 

XVI 1 1 

Studio 289 
Sound in Studio 291 
MediaMaker 295 

Overall Structure 295 
Mac-Based Sounds 297 
External Sounds 299 
Getting in Sync 301 
Adobe Premiere 302 
Animation Works 306 
SuperCard 309 
Vo 3 ^ger CD AudioStack 311 
interFACE 314 

Creating Aaors 315 
Speech Sync 318 
At Your Service 320 
MediaTracks 322 
Paracomp Magic 326 
HookUp! 330 
Studio/ 1 332 

PROmotion 333 
Final Thoughts 339 

Chapter 1 6 Sound and the System 341 

Sound Manager 341 
Soimding Off 342 
Multiple Channels 342 
MACE 343 
Recording Sounds 343 
QuickTime 345 

How It Works 345 


S)nichronization and Sound 347 
Requirements 348 
MIDI Manager 349 
What It Does 349 
How It Does It 350 
How It Affects Performance 351 
One Last Thought 351 

Chapter 17 Hardware 353 

Sotmd Modules and More 353 
Roland 354 
E-mu Systems 362 
Yamaha 364 
Korg 366 
MIDI Interfaces 367 
Good 368 
Better 368 
Best 369 

Better Than Best 370 
Speakers 371 

Roland CS-10 371 

Roland MA-12C 372 
MacSpeaker 373 
Powered Partner 570 374 

Chapter 18 Adding Sound after Transfer to Video 377 

Video Pros and Cons yil 
Production Music Libraries 378 
Original Music 379 
SMPTE Timecode 380 


Chapter 19 
Chapter 20 

Appendix A 
Appendix B 
Appendix C 

Working with a Composer 382 
Other Sounds 383 

Production Music and Sound-Effects Libraries 
Music and Sound Effects on Compact Disc 386 
Music and Sound Effects on CD-ROM 392 

Just for Fun 

After Dark 397 

Kid Pix 400 

Talking Moose 402 

Adventures in Musicland 405 


List of Companies 







Index 430 


.verybody knows that the Macintosh can make sounds. Most Mac users 
have experimented, at one time or another, with changing their system alert 
beeps to a variety of entertaining sound effects and speech. But, until re- 
cently most people treated the sonic potential of the Macintosh as a 
kind of novelty— to be sure, a novelty that humanized the computer and 
made it much more fun to use, but a novelty nonetheless. 

As the popularity of electronic musical instruments flourished, the Mac- 
intosh took the lead as the computer of choice in professional recording 
studios across the country. And in recent years, the introduction of af- 
fordable CI>-quality digital recording hardware has propelled the common 
Macintosh into the ranks of professional digital audio workstations. 

Now that computer-based multimedia has emerged into the light of day, 
the Macintosh’s multifaceted sound capabilities are suddenly assuming new 
importance. It is now de rigueur for animation programs to have some kind 
of sound support, and desktop presentations everywhere are boasting more 
sophisticated soundtracks as producers realize that the inept use of sotmd 
can undermine the impact of multimedia. 

The Audible Macintosh grew out of my writings over the past couple of 
years for the Desktop Multimedia Report and New Media Products, where I 
have covered topics relating to the addition of sound and music for multi- 
media. I realized that there was a need for a single source that could gather 
together the seemingly disparate elements constituting the Macintosh’s 
audio capabilities and present them in a comprehensive way that could 
benefit musicians, animators, and producers alike. 


Who Is This Book For? 

This book is written for anyone who is interested in adding sound to the Mac- 
intosh. More specifically, it’s for animators who may have a good background 
in working with visual elements, but who may lack a full understanding of 
how to use sound and music to bring their text and graphics to life. 

This book is for musicians who want to ejqjlore and compare the composing, 
editing, and recording programs that they can use to integrate their craft into 
the field of multimedia. 

This book is for desktop presentation producers of all kinds who want to know 
what their options are for adding sound to their projects. 

And this book is especially for the average Macintosh users everywhere who 
find themselves mystified by the growing list of concepts and jargon that new 
developments in audio capabilities have brought. 

What's Inside? 

The first two chapters of The Audible Macintosh are designed to provide a con- 
text and a starting point from which to explore the remaining chapters. Chap- 
ter 1 gives some historical backgroimd to help keep a sense of perspective 
about our place along the audio-visual evolutionary path. Chapter 2 gives 
an overview of sound and how it’s being used today for presentations of 
various kinds. 

The appearance of MIDI during the 1980s has permanently altered the way 
that musicians compose and perform with electronic instruments. More impor- 
tant, from the standpoint of multimedia, it has provided a way to add high- 
quality sound to presentations without necessarily breaking the bank. Chapters 
3-9, therefore, are devoted to MIDI: what it is, how it works, and wfoat pro- 
grams are currently available to help you combine MIDI with multimedia. 

Chapters 10-14 cover the topic of digital audio, and primarily, digital 
recording and editing. If you don’t know anything about the principles of 
digital audio. Chapter 10 will fill you in on the basics. After that, I explore 
products ranging from the inexpensive and ever-popular MacRecorder all 


the way to pro-level hardware/software packages that let you record CD- 
quality sound directly to yoiu hard disk. 

In this section I have purposely narrowed the scope of the book to include only 
products that, in my opinion, are appropriate for most multimedia projects. 
This excludes exorbitantly priced dedicated workstations that use the Mac as a 
front end, and hardware/software combinations targeted primarily for profes- 
sional recording studios and CD premastering facilities. Nonetheless, these 
produas are often similar, in many ways, to those mentioned in this book, so 
you’ll gain some insight into the workings of these top-end packages as well. 

Chapter 15 deals specifically with animation and presentation software and 
how the different applications use soimd. For animators and multimetfia pro- 
ducers, this provides a way to compare the audio capabilities of most of the 
currently available presentation programs. If you’re unhappy with the soimd- 
handling features in your current application. Chapter 15 can help you find 
something more appropriate. If you’re a musician interested in working with 
animators, this chapter can show you the different approaches to adding sound 
that are taken by the leading presentation programs. And if you’re just starting 
out, this chapter can provide a good comparative guide to multimedia software 
and its audio potential. 

The remaining chapters of the book— a potpourri of information covering a 
wide range of topics, both technical and nontechnical— will round out your 
understanding of adding sound to presentations. 

Chapter 16 explores the Macintosh S 3 ^tem software and how it handles 
soimd. This chapter also examines the structure and capabilities of Quick- 
Time and provides some insight into its potential for bringing the ele- 
ments of multimedia into countless new applications. 

Chapter 17 discusses, in more detail, some of the hardware devices mentioned 
earlier in the book. Several sound modules that I feel are especially appropriate 
for low-to-mediiun-budget presentations are described along with a survey of 
MIDI interfaces of all types. I also describe a few examples of self-powered 
speakers that are specifically designed for desktop presentations. 

Chapter 18 explains the process of adding soimd and music to presenta- 
tions that have been transferred to videotape. It provides information on 


tape formats, timecode, and working with a composer. If you can’t find a 
composer or you need a source for new sounds, Chapter 19 lists more than 
20 companies, both large and small, that offer production music libraries 
and sound effects for presentations of all kinds. 

Finally, Chapter 20 describes some examples of inexpensive programs that 
use sound aeatively to help make working and learning more fun for 
grown-ups and kids alike. 

The Companion Disk 

To give you something to experiment with when you begin exploring sound 
and multimedia. I’ve included a companion disk with this book. On it you’ll 
find several examples of professionally produced music that you can play with 
a simple MIDI system. I’ve also included a few digital music clips and sound 
effeas to try out with your next presentation. 

I hope this book serves you well, not only as a guide and a reference source but 
also as an inspiration that spurs you on to harness the power, the mystery, and 
the beauty of that often elusive phenomenon; sound. 



siUUt vnce 

A Brief 

History of Sound 
for Presentations, or 
How We Got Here 
from There 

ong before the dawn of civilization, wise people recognized the power and 
importance of adding soiond to a presentation. No witch doctor worth his 
salt would try to cure a sick child by simply staring mutely off into space. 
No tribal leader could rescue his tribe from the fearsome effects of a solar 
eclipse or call forth rain from the dry, unyielding skies by gesturing silently 
toward the heavens. No, they shook rattles, beat drums, danced, chanted, 
and sang! Pretty much the same kind of thing we do today, only now we 
call it multimedia. Early man knew instinctively what modern man often 
forgets— that sound, when combined with visuals, extends the power of the 
individual and enables him to reach further into his environment and 
deeper into the psyches of those around him. 



si All the World's a Stage 

Taking the protean elements of music, speech, and sound effects and com- 
bining them with visuals in the form of live performance has yielded a rich 
legacy of theatrical art. Through the centuries, different cultures have pro- 
duced plays with dialogue, but no music; music, but no dialogue; and dia- 
logue and music together in combinations that have given birth to an 
extraordinary kaleidoscope of forms and styles. 

The oft-negleaed third member of this trinity, sound effeas, has gradually 
gained in importance over the years as a means of heightening dramatic 
intensity, providing comic relief, or adding a note of realism to a scene to 
draw the audience more fully into the action. Writings from the time of 
Euripides and Sophocles describe a method for simulating thimder in 
Greek plays by bouncing leaden balls on stretched leather. Shakespeare 
often used sound effects in his plays to satisfy the ever-growing demands 
for realism and magic in his Elizabethan productions. In the following 
centuries opera achieved new levels of artistic expression by fusing music 
with dialogue and combining them with ever more elaborate stage settings. 
And let’s not forget the great, majestic s}mthesizer of the Baroque era— the 
pipe organ— which reached its apogee of development long before the 
invention of the light bulb, yet did a very credible job of imitating flutes, 
oboes, cellos, and the other instrumental sounds of the period. 

SI Mixing Music and Sound Effects 

At around this same time, in the Japanese Kabuki plays, the musicians 
were called upon to serve double duty by providing the atmospheric musi- 
cal accompaniment as well as creating certain sound effects needed to 
heighten the dramatic peaks. This dual role is surprisingly similar to that of 
the later “trap” drummers who played in the musical theaters of America 
when vaudeville and burlesque were in their heyday. These versatile per- 
formers were not only the drummers for the house bands that played in 
these theaters but were also expected to provide an array of props, or 
“toys,” as they’re often called, to supply the shows with a variety of sound 
effects, usually with very little preparation time. Slide whistles, ratchets. 

A Brief History of Sound for Presentations 


gongs, and sandpaper blocks were all part of the arsenal of sounds that gave 
comic impact to this popular form of entertainment. 

Now we’ve arrived at the 20th century, and this is where things get 
really interesting. By the mid- 1920s, there were two parallel but soon-to- 
be-related performance phenomena. On the one hand there was radio, 
which was sound without pictures. And on the other hand there were 
silent movies, which were pictures without sound. 

I Early Radio 

Radio in its early days owed a great debt of gratitude to those trap drum- 
mers from the vaudeville theaters, many of whom made the natural transi- 
tion to working in radio bands and orchestras. They brought with them the 
techniques necessary to enliven radio dramas and comedies by applying 
their knowledge of sound effects. Dialogue was treated much as it was in 
the theaters of the time, except that long dramatic pauses were not allowed 
since there were no corresponding visuals to carry the action. Music, in 
these early days, served primarily to fill in the “dead air” spaces left in the 
dialogue or from dramatic transitions, because it was feared that any signifi- 
cant gaps in the broadcast would quickly send people searching for another 

By the time radio entered its “Golden Age” in the 1930s, full-time sound- 
effects creators appeared, busily working in large rooms filled with contrap- 
tions of all sorts, producing the sounds that gave life to the radio plays. 
Eventually, they began collecting sounds in advance and recording them on 
disks, which they often played from multiple turntables. Seeing a need, 
record companies adapted their equipment to capture soimds not easily 
created in the studios. These sovind-effeas libraries further raised the level of 
realism in radio dramas and freed the dialogue from being overly explanatory. 

Throughout the 1920s and 1930s, radio served up a veritable smorgasbord 
of aural entertainment. Families could now get the news without reading 
the newspaper. They could enjoy comedies, dramas, symphonic concerts, 
and operas at the turn of a dial. All this attention to aural gratification fos- 
tered in the public an appetite for sound, which inevitably had an impact 
on the film industry. 



si Not-So-Silent Movies 

Most people realize that the so-called silent films were never totally silent. 

In the larger cities they were often accompanied by full orchestras that supplied 
lush background scores imderlining the action and emotions on screen while 
supplying some sound effects as well. Smaller theaters made do with a single 
piano, while many other theaters across the country presented their films to the 
bellowing accompaniment of the “Mighty Wurlitzer” organ. 

In Japan, rather than using written subtitles to provide the dialogue on 
screen, each theater employed a skilled actor and interpreter called a benshi. 
These highly popular men sat on stage, off to one side of the screen, and 
provided the voices and sound effects that brought to life the films of the 
day. At any given time they might be called upon to supply the voices of 
men, women, children, and animals, along with other vocal soimd effects. 

The art of the benshi was so appreciated that often people came to hear 
them regardless of what films were playing. When movies with the novelty 
of soimd appeared in Japan, the benshi could not compete and the art form 
gradually disappeared. 

3 Fear of Sound 

The benshi were not the only ones to bemoan the advent of sound. It 
may seem hard to believe now, but in the late 1920s when movies finally 
acquired S3mchronized sound and dialogue, not everyone was thrilled. 

Charlie Chaplin feared that movies with sound would destroy the art of 
pantomime, and he complained that talkies would ruin “the great beauty 
of silence.” To him the Little Tramp persona was inconceivable as a talking 

The Russian expressionist direaors Eisenstein and Pudovkin issued a state- 
ment expressing grave concerns about the effects of adding synchronous 
sounds to films, which they felt would bring the demise of the “montage” 
school of editing. Sound, they explained, should be used as a counterpoint 
to the image and not to convey strict realism. They were much more ame- 
nable to the use of music and asynchronous sounds. The French director 

A Brief History of Sound for Presentations 


Ren6 Clair expressed apprehension that the addition of sound would turn 
movies into “canned theater” and cause the art form to lose the momentum 
it had gained during the past decade. 

This initial resistance fortunately proved to be short-lived. The more 
aggressively artistic and experimental directors, such as Clair and the Amer- 
ican Lewis Milestone, demonstrated that sound could be an immensely 
expressive component of the filmmaker’s art and a valuable tool in expand- 
ing the meaning of the visuals. Suddenly the great advantages of sound 
became apparent. Acting styles became more natural, and sound effeas 
began to take over some of the functions of furthering the story line and 
imbuing the plot with inner meanings. Later directors like Orson Welles 
and Alfred Hitchcock continued the exploration of creative applications of 
sotmd for cinema. In the late 1940s, radio finally got its picture and tele- 
\Tsion was bom. Television and film followed roughly parallel paths, with a 
fair amoimt of cross-pollination along the way, and this is where we find 
ourselves today. 

I Modern Sound 

In 1956, Louis and Bebe Barron created the first purely elearonic music 
and sound-effects track for the movie Forbidden Planet. The landmark 
soundtrack, with its eerie effects, first brought to the attention of film- 
makers the potential of electronic music. This fertile source of artistic 
expression has now blossomed beyond anyone’s expectations. A new pro- 
fessional, the sound designer, has appeared. He combines sounds from 
various sources— electronic and acoustic— and creates the sonic landscapes 
that have captivated audiences everywhere. 

Sound has become so important to our perception of reality that without it 
the visuals seem insubstantial and unreal. This brings up the philosophical 
question, “If a tree falls in the forest and there is no sound, did the tree 
really fall?” I think not. Reflect for a moment on Star Wars or The Empire 
Strikes Back. How many times have you seen explosions in outer space 
accompanied by a tremendous noise? Scientists will tell you that outer 
space is a vacuum, and because soimd can’t travel in a vacuum, the explo- 
sions would have made no noise. Didn’t George Lucas know this? I’m sure 


] 6 

he did. But he also knew something far more important: that those explo- 
sions would not have seemed convincing or substantive without the accom- 
panpng noise. Soimd, it seems, can create a kind of hyperreality, and sound 
designers work long hours to bring that new dimension to the theaters. 

S Final Thoughts 

Computer-based multimedia is still in its infancy. The situation now is 
similar to that of the film industry in the mid- 1920s; we can learn much 
from stud 3 dng those who paved the way. The most important lesson here is 
that the power of sound is there to be harvested— now that the technology 
to apply it is accessible to everyone, there is really no excuse to be stuck 
producing silent “movies.” 

When that prehistoric painter drew his pictures on the cave walls at Lascaux, 
it may not have been the birth of modern animation. It certainly wasn’t 
thirty frames per second. In fact, it was more like one frame per million 
years. But when that graphic was done, and he sat there looking at it with 
the rest of the tribe, you can be sure that someone began to sing and some- 
one else started adding soimds. 


mttn vocc 

Using Sound 
in Presentations: 

An Overview 

as we enter the mid-1990s, we find that the world of Hollywood has 
impinged upon the world of corporate computing and from this collision has 
sprung, full-blown, as from the head of Zeus, a new buzzword: multimedia. 
Today, expectations for compelling presentations run high, and a knowledge of 
soimd and its applications is no longer only the domain of hobbyists and game 

To sort out the field of audio for multimedia, let’s go back to the original three 
categories of sound inherited from the movie industry and see how they relate 
to the somewhat different world of computer-generated presentations. 

In the macrocosm of motion pictures, sound consists of three elements: 
dialogue (or voice), sound effects, and music. These components of the 
tj^ical soundtrack are created separately, recorded on separate tracks, and 
kept separate throughout most of the postproduction editing process. This 
is due, mainly, to the differences in the way they are derived and later 
woven into the final aural fabric of the soimdtrack. Taking these as a point 
of departure, let’s explore some of the ways in which sound can add new 
dimensions to your presentations. 


I 10 

^ Voice of Reason 

The first category, voice, is most effective at conveying specific information 
as well as humanizing a presentation. Anyone who has seen the movie 2001 
knows all too well how compelling a computer can be when it talks to you. 
Of course, a live speaker who talks into a microphone during a presentation 
adds a vocal element to a program, but generating speech from within the 
computer serves some other important functions. Self-running demonstra- 
tions, point-of-sale displays, and educational programs can benefit enor- 
mously from the addition of spoken words, and if the dialogue is tied to the 
software, the presentation can be mailed or carried around the country and 
reproduced with consistent results. 

A speech synthesizer offers one way to add voice to your presentation. This 
usually comes in the form of software, such as MacinTalk, and typically 
requires that you type in words that it then converts into speech. The 
somewhat stilted and mechanical-sounding results may not be appropriate 
for serious presentations but may work well under some conditions. For 
a better solution, record speech with a digitizer: a hardware/software 
combination, such as MacRecorder or Voice Impact Pro, which takes 
the output of a microphone, converts it to digital data, and stores it as a 
sound file. 

Although requiring a lot of memory, this excellent way to add speech to a 
program allows anyone to be the vocal source and results in clear and natu- 
ral soimd. The head of a company might, for instance, add his own voice to 
an interoffice memo or include a brief statement in a sales presentation to 
personalize his message to the audience. Alternate sound files, prepared in 
foreign languages by native speakers, can also allow quick and easy prepara- 
tion of presentations for overseas clients. The new generation of word pro- 
cessors and business programs now offers voice notation capabilities, which 
should make these digitized messages increasingly commonplace. Apple’s 
inclusion of digitizing hardware and software in the Mac Classic II, the LC, 
the Ilsi, and the Quadra demonstrates tmdeniably the growing importance of 
this type of sound application to the evolution of Macintosh software. 

Using Sound in Presentations: An Overview 


In the field of education, the addition of speech to presentations offers enor- 
mous potential. Students can make more rapid progress in learning lan- 
guages when they hear the words spoken correaly. Sight-impaired people 
can respond to prompts and questions in a program when presented audi- 
bly. Nearly every kind of educational program can benefit from the addition 
of an instructor’s voice. 

CD-ROM technology provides an important new application for the 
spoken word, when combined with a program like H3qjerCard, to access 
recordings of famous people. For instance, a program on World War II 
might include speeches by Winston Churchill or excerpts from newscasts 
of the period. Used extensively for educational and training applications, 
interaaive CD technology has great potential for multimedia programs, 
allowing a presenter instant access to an impressive array of information. 

I Sound and Fury 

Sound effects fall roughly into two basic categories: synchronized sounds 
(those that appear to result from particular on-screen events) and back- 
ground sounds (those that establish a sense of time and place). When used 
judiciously, they can make a presentation more compelling by focusing 
attention on specific actions or by creating a suitable backgroimd to work 
against. A presenter might have the sounds of a babbling brook and chirp- 
ing birds running quietly in the background as he extols the virtues of a 
new resort development or presents the environmental policies of his corpo- 
ration while showing appropriate visuals. Under the right circumstances, 
background sounds can add a subtle quality to your programs, but you 
must know your venue and your audience well. Don’t expect background 
sounds to be anything but mush at a noisy trade show or other busy arenas. 

Sync Sounds 

Synchronized sounds, by far the most compelling and widely used sound 
effects, make the actions on screen jump out at the audience. They have the 
great gift of entertaining the viewers while at the same time galvanizing 



their interest. Sound effects can be used to convey concepts in ways that 
words can’t. One product developer, for example, asked to have the sound 
of electricity accompany the mouse clicks that appeared on his demo/ 
presentation. He felt this would convey the sense of increased power that 
his product would bring the end user. 

For a number of years. General Motors has distributed computer disks to 
potential customers that detail information on its latest line of Buicks. In 
earlier disks, HyperCard-like programs took you inside the car and intro- 
duced you to the instrumentation and other dashboard features. Revving 
the engine not only let you see the speedometer work but let you hear the 
motor. Clicking on the radio played the Buick jingle. Door locks, trunk 
slams, and other soimds embedded throughout the program made exploring 
these produas both fun and memorable— a much more compelling presen- 
tation than a printed brochure. 

Now we shift gears from one of the largest companies to one of the small- 
est. Celestial Wind Carillons of Eureka Springs, Arkansas, distributes its 
catalog of handmade wind chimes in the form of a HyperCard stack replete 
with graphics, buttons, animation, and sound effects (Figure 2.1). Clicking 
on the picture of each wind chime causes it to sway and lets you hear its 
unique soimds and tuning scale. Other buttons and icons let you explore 
each model in detail with pop-up fields providing definitions, historical 
background, technical information, descriptions, and even testimonials. You 
can also play the individual notes on each wind chime, so by the time you 
reach the Order Form page, you feel that you’ve actually tried out each 
model— a very clever and effective application of music, sound effects, and 
graphics. For another terrific example of a H 3 rperCard stack with sound 
and graphics, see the description of The Book of MIDI in Chapter 8. 

As with speech, the addition of sound effects holds great potential in educa- 
tional and training programs. Can you tell the difference between the sound 
of a loose timing chain and a maladjusted rocker arm? An auto repair 
course that included sound effects could help. Doctors-in-training could 
study cardiac conditions by not only seeing but hearing the soimds of differ- 
ent types of arrh 5 rthmias. The inclusion of sounds in programs for children 
is especially effective because it adds an irresistible element of fim to their 
computing experience. 

Using Sound in Presentations: An Overview 


Figure 2.1 

A sample Hyper- 
Card stack 

inr more 

information. Click the button or onyuihere inside the pop-| 
up field to hide the information field. Tru it nou;! 

2. UJhen you see a button like this. click it to hear 
the scale of that carillon. Try it nom! 

3. lilhen you see a button like thi$,<H click it to re- 
turn to the inden or home card of this stock. 

lilhen you see letters in the Carillon title field like 
these, ACD E G A click on each letter to hear the note 
that corresponds to it. Try it nouii 

5. lilhen you see a button like this, click it to re- 
turn to this card. 

6. Click on any button belom to go to the correspond- 
ing description and sounds of that particular Carillon. 

R-Pentatonic ^^^PenTatonlc^^ TempleJSl 

D-Pentatonic I Brahm s LullabyeX Cambridge 


Click in 
this box on 
ang card to 
hear the 



Finding Sounds 

One way to add sound effeas to your presentation is by installing a music 
card in your computer. Products such as Digidesign’s MacProteus card, 
intended primarily for music applications, usually include a few dozen sound 
effeas. Though offering very high fidelity, the soimd-effeas seleaion may be 
too limited for your needs. If so, you can record your own effeas and save 
them as digitized sound files, just as you can for speech. The best way to get 
sound effeas is to explore some of the numerous soimd-effeas libraries avail- 
able on compaa disc. Dozens of companies offer extensive libraries contain- 
ing thousands of sounds intended primarily for the movie and broadcast 

9 Music to My Ears 

It might be argued that music is what really puts the multi in multimedia. 
Rapidly coming into its own as a powerful enhancement to computer presenta- 
tions, music can capture the spirit of a produa and carry an audience along 



through the most labyrinthian program. Music can establish moods, heighten 
transitions, and stress key points. Jingles and themes can impart a strong prod- 
ua identity in a way that printed text cannot. 

Sources of Music 

Where can you get music for your presentations? The music industry 
releases records, tapes, and compact discs by the thousands each year, but 
beware of copyright violations! Production music libraries offer a better 
solution. Many of the same companies that offer sound-effects libraries 
produce collections of music designed specifically for broadcast and busi- 
ness applications. You can also get CD-ROMs filled with digitized produc- 
tion music ready to be edited and imported into a presentation program. 
But, for the very best solution, hire a composer to write a custom score for 
your project. In this way the music can accurately reflect your intentions 
and, with today’s increasing number of small elearonic studios, this may 
not cost as much as you think. 

Hardware and Software 

Music can be incorporated into a presentation in much the same way as 
voice and sound effeas. A digital audio add-on card, such as Digidesign’s 
Audiomedia board, offers sound quality that rivals a compact disc, but the 
storage requirements are quite substantial. Less expensive digitizers like 
MacRecorder require considerably less storage, but for music purposes, 
they may not be of high enough fidelity for the more discerning end user. 

You can obtain excellent sound quality from less memory with an add-on 
music card or an external MIDI sound module. A MIDI system (see Chap- 
ter 3) not only maintains high fidelity without the storage demands but it 
allows you to edit the music extensively with the appropriate software. If 
you’re working with a composer, he will have to know your hardware/software 
configuration and write specifically for it to ensure optimum results. If you’re 
not a compxjser, and you don’t know one, there are many produas to fill the 
gap, including MIDI production-music libraries offering music files that you • 
can easily adapt to your projea. 

Using Sound in Presentations: An Overview 


I Audio for Video 

Adding sound to video presentations involves techniques more like the 
traditional methods used in film production. Voice, sound effects, and 
music are recorded on separate tracks and mixed during editing into the 
final product. The considerations of sound type and placement are still the 
same, but the approach differs somewhat from computer-generated presen- 
tations. Through the use of SMPTE timecode and a device that reads and 
writes it, many music software products can “lock” to a video picture, 
enabling the computer to handle the music performance while the video 
player supplies the visuals. 

In closing, let’s review some helpful hints to keep in mind when adding 
sound to presentations. The most important rule is dotiH overdo it. We’ve all 
known amateur desktop publishers who one day discover changeable fonts 
and suddenly begin sending out newsletters that look like ransom notes. 
The same thing can happen with sound. 

For better results follow the Zen-like maxim: Less is more. Ask yourself 
where the focus of the audience should be at various places throughout the 
presentation: text, narration, color, mood, graphics, etc. Add soimd that 
enhances these points. Sound and visuals that are not synergistic make 
learning difficult. It’s like trying to read a technical journal while your four- 
year-old son is lighting the television set on fire. Make soimd effects, 
speech, and music work for you and you will be rewarded with more 
absorbing presentations and greater enthusiasm from your appreciative 



Adagia M.M. 

xottn mcc 


An Introduction 
to MIDI 

'ack in the olden days— before about 1980— synthesizers were mostly analog 
devices. Pressing different keys on the keyboard sent different voltages to 
one or more oscillators, which produced the appropriate tones and pitches. 
Musicians discovered that by simultaneously triggering the same notes on 
two or more s 3 mthesizers with different settings they could create fuller, 
more compelling sounds. This practice, known as layering, led to attempts 
to interconnect S3mthesizers so that a controller keyboard— the master— 
could trigger sounds in another synthesizer— the slave. Unfortunately, there 
were no standards to ensure that one instrument would respond in the same 
way as another. Trying to connect a Roland drum machine to a Yamaha 
s}mthesizer or an Oberheim to a Korg was typically very troublesome and 
often simply impossible. 

In an effort to break this technological logjam, Dave Smith, an American 
synthesizer maker, proposed an instrument hardware standard that he 
called the Universal S 5 mthesizer Interface. Originally intended to allow the 
playing of two or more instruments from a single keyboard, it grew during 
the following year into a panoply of specifications that guaranteed a much 
higher level of versatility by including other functions and performance 

In August 1983, at a meeting in Japan, the major synthesizer manufactur- 
ers, including Sequential Circuits, Yamaha, Roland, Korg, and Kawai, set 
aside their usually competitive instincts and established the MIDI 1.0 Spec- 
ification. In the following year, MIDI became the hottest new item in the 



electronic music industry. Now it’s virtually impossible to find any synthe- 
sizers or peripherals that don’t have some MIDI capability. 

Bl What Is MIDI? 

MIDI stands for Musical Instrument Digital Interface. The MIDI Specifi- 
cation describes in detail the types of cables and connectors that must be 
used as well as the digital codes and commands that compatible instruments 
can transmit and receive. In other words, MIDI is a protocol for transmit- 
ting data between devices in a musical network. Furthermore, it is a serial 
interface transferring data at 31.25 kBaud and can transmit in two direc- 
tions at one time, but not on the same cable. For this reason, a fully imple- 
mented MIDI device will always have at least two connectors in the back, 
labeled In and Out. 

Most synthesizers also have a conneaor called MIDI Thru. This port 
sends out a direct copy of the data received at the MIDI In jack and pro- 
vides a practical means of chaining together MIDI devices in a system with 
more than two components. Figure 3.1 shows the three MIDI pons. 

The following sections describe some of the important features that MIDI 
devices incorporate into their designs. 

— MIDI 1 


Figure 3.1 

The three MIDI 


An Introduction to MIDI 



To transmit data between MIDI devices, you need a special type of serial 
cable. MIDI cables use a common five-pin DIN connector, the same kind 
often foimd on European hi-fi equipment. Pins 4 and 5 carry the digital 
signal, and pin 2 is used for grounding. The cables should not exceed 
50 feet to prevent data transmission errors, although there are products that 
can extend this range. 

To play one instrument from another, you simply cormect the MIDI Out 
port on the master to the MIDI In port on the slave. To establish a bidirec- 
tional data flow, you must add a second cable connecting the MIDI Out of 
the slave to the MIDI In of the master. Then either instrument can trans- 
mit or receive performance information to or from the other (Figure 3.2). 

Figure 3.2 

A simple 
MIDI system 


In a setup involving several instruments, it is important to ensure that the 
data reaches only the appropriate devices or there will be a great jumble of 
noise as each synthesizer tries to respond to all the incoming information. 
MIDI, therefore, provides 16 channels to subdivide and organize the flow 
of MIDI data. It’s important to remember that the MIDI cables are not 
carrying audio information, where different channels or tracks would re- 
quire separate cables. MIDI cables carry digital data that has the channel 
information embedded in the computer code^ all of it flows through a single 



line. The receiving instruments choose which data applies to them (accord- 
ing to their individual settings) as it comes through the cable. 

The most common analogy is that of a television set receiving its signal 
from a cable TV company. A single cable is attached to the set and provides 
several channels simultaneously. You can determine which channel to watch 
by setting the channel selector on the television. If you have several differ- 
ent television sets connected to the same cable, you can have each one 
receiving a different channel. 


In addition to the 16 basic MIDI channels, there are also MIDI modes. 
These modes determine how the receiving device responds to the incoming 
channel data. In Omni mode all MIDI data on all channels is recognized. 

In Poly mode the receiving instrument responds only to a designated chan- 
nel. In Mono mode individual voices (instrument sounds) respond to spe- 
cific channels. 


When you create music on a MIDI keyboard, the performance is converted 
into digital information consisting of a series of messages that are sent to the 
MIDI Out port. There are many kinds of MIDI messages, but here are 
some of the most common ones. 

The most important message is note on. This information goes out every time a 
note is played. The MIDI Specification provides for a range of 128 notes, 
numbered from 0 to 127. Middle C on a piano corresponds to MIDI note 
number 60. The lowest note on a piano (Al) corresponds to MIDI note num- 
ber 21, and the highest note (C88) corresponds to MIDI note 108. 

Most S 3 mthesizers also provide velocity data that tells how hard a key is 
struck. The note off message indicates that the key has been released. Many 
instruments also recognize aftertouch or pressure data, which describes how 
hard a key is pressed after it is played and until it is released. Aftertouch is 
an example of continuous data because its messages are represented as a 
string of values rather than a single event. Velocity and aftertouch data can 

An Introduction to MIDI 


be used to control certain aspects of a sound’s parameters, such as loudness 
or timbre. 

Another common type of continuous data, pitch bendy is usually produced 
with a wheel or lever on the keyboard. It allows you to slide pitches up or 
down to simulate instruments like the trombone or guitar that can “scoop” 
or “bend” notes. Program change messages tell a synthesizer to change 
sounds. Clock messages are used in synchronizing several MIDI devices 
during playback of a performance. System-exclusive messages enable you to 
transfer data to a specific brand of S5mthesizer to access the parameters of 
its internal architecture (see Chapter 9). 

I MIDI and the Mac 

It wasn’t long before musicians discovered that the great power that MIDI 
conferred upon them for live performance was only the tip of the techno- 
logical iceberg. The true power of MIDI came to the fore when MIDI 
instruments were coupled to computers. Because MIDI is a digital inter- 
face, and because computers speak digital all the time, it was truly love at 
first sight. 

Macintoshes, however, don’t come with MIDI ports as standard equip- 
ment. Therefore, the first thing you need to connea your computer to a 
MIDI S 3 ^tem is a MIDI interface. This is a small box, sometimes as small 
as a pack of cigarettes. The larger units are often designed to mount in a 
standard 19-inch audio rack or to sit under the Mac much like an external 
hard disk. Different makes and models offer an array of features, with 
prices ranging from well below a hundred to several hundred dollars. 

The MIDI interface attaches to the Mac’s modem and/or printer port and 
provides one or more MIDI In and Out ports for connecting to the MIDI 
hardware. MIDI interfaces that connect to both the printer and modem 
ports can act as two independent imits, allowing you to access the 16 MIDI 
channels through each cable, giving you a total of 32 channels. These inter- 
faces typically offer a bypass switch so that you can use your printer and 
modem without disconnecting anything. 



si Sounds from Circuits 

To complete your basic computer-MIDI system, you need some kind of 
sound-generating device. Currently, there is a rich cornucopia of synthesiz- 
ers available at your local electronic-music store, and because they invari- 
ably have MIDI capability, you can select any brand according to price and 
available features. The different manufacturers have devised different meth- 
ods of generating musical sounds, using complex digital-processing 
schemes. Yamaha has championed FM (frequency modulation) synthesis. 
Roland uses linear arithmetic, or LA, synthesis. You may also encounter 
additive s)mthesis, digital resynthesis, wavetable synthesis, and interactive 
phase-distortion synthesis. 

There are many ways of creating the varied timbres of musical sounds by 
algorithmically manipulating digital data. The important thing to remem- 
ber is that no one method is necessarily any better than another. Your 
choice should be determined by the kinds of sounds you’re looking for and 
how intuitive you find the instrument’s user interface. Other consider- 
ations, in addition to price, might be availability of additional sounds and 
specific performance features. 

Sound modules are essentially the same as synthesizers except that they lack 
the attached keyboard. They are the soimd-producing component of a syn- 
thesizer mounted in a compact case. Many synthesizers come in a soimd 
module version. I often use the terms synthesizer and sound module inter- 
changeably since their functions in a MIDI system are usually the same. 

Because of their attached keyboards and greater size, synthesizers may pro- 
vide some benefits for live performances and stage shows, but for the aver- 
age desktop multimedia producer or MIDI-Macintosh creator, collecting 
multiple keyboards is both cumbersome and space constuning. I recom- 
mend sticking with sound modules whenever possible. They are usually 
rack-mountable, require little space, and are easily transportable. 

Many of the sound modules on the market today have multitimbral capabil- 
ity. This means that they can produce several different instrument sounds 

An Introduction to MIDI 


simultaneously. By assigning separate MIDI channels to the different 
sounds, you can create instrumental ensembles, such as a woodwind trio 
(flute, oboe, clarinet), a jazz combo (sax, guitar, piano, bass, drums), or any 
other combination of sounds available in that sound module. 

Polyphony refers to the ability of an instrument to play more than one note 
at a time— an essential charaaeristic of all multitimbral instruments. When 
shopping for a sound module, be aware of the multitimbral and polyphonic 
capabilities of the instnunent. For instance, an eight-voice multitimbral 
synthesizer with 16 -note polyphony can play as many as 16 notes simulta- 
neously spread over as many as eight different instrument sounds. It’s easy 
to see that with one or two good multitimbral sound modules, you can have 
a veritable orchestra or big band on your desktop. 

I Getting Started with MIDI 

There are many ways to create a MIDI-Macintosh system. You must consider 
your intended use and anticipated needs as well as your budget when shopping 
for hardware. Do you have limited space in your office or studio? Will you 
need to carry the system around with you to trade shows, sales meetings, or 
public schools? Will you be composing your own music or using someone 
else’s? Do you have to synchronize to videotape for film scoring or sound 
effects? And finally, what kinds of sounds most interest you: elearonic, rock, 
commercial pop, or traditional? If you’re like me you’ll have a hard time limit- 
ing yourself to very specific criteria, so my first suggestion is to strive for versa- 
tility and flexibility. 

Speakers of the House 

Any MIDI system needs some kind of amplifier /speaker arrangement for 
playback purposes. In some cases you can listen to your sound module with 
headphones, but this is obviously not suitable for presentations. Your home 
stereo will work just fine, but it may be impractical to locate it near your 
computer. There are also rack-mountable power amplifiers that will drive 
large speakers for presentations in auditoriums, but for most people, work- 
ing in a limited space with limited resources, there is another choice. 



Several companies now offer compact, self-powered, desktop speakers espe- 
cially designed for use with your computer. These speakers have magneti- 
cally shielded cases to prevent stray magnetism from distorting the screen 
image, and they often come color-coordinated to match your Macintosh. 
Their built-in amplifiers, though not powerful enough for large audiences, 
should prove quite adequate for work at home or for presentations to small 
groups. If you have a single sound module, hookup is easy. Using standard 
audio cables, connect the audio outputs from the sound module to the 
speakers. At least one of the speakers will provide controls for adjusting the 
volume and balance. 

All Systems Go 

The S37stems that I discuss in this section are intended to be cost effective, 
easy to set up, and if necessary, transportable. They are designed to work 
well with the kinds of desktop presentation programs mentioned later in 
this book. The simplest system consists of the Macintosh, a MIDI inter- 
face, and a sound module (Figure 3.3). This arrangement serves quite well 
as a playback system for presequenced MIDI music (see Chapter 7). Many 
multimedia producers are not interested in composing their own music, 
choosing instead to skip to the editing and playback stages of production. If 
you are one of these people, this setup should prove adequate. The sound 
module must be multitimbral, with no less than 16-note polyphony— twice 
that is much better. 

Since this setup has no MIDI keyboard, it is difficult (though not impos- 
sible) to use it for composing music. To keep the same basic arrangement. 

Figure 3.3 

A basic MIDI 
playback system 

An Introduction to MIDI 


but as a bidirectional system, you need to replace the sound module with a 
multitimbral synthesizer that has a built-in keyboard (Figure 3.4). Then 
you can play music into the Macintosh and have the computer send the 
data back to the synthesizer. 

Figure 3,4 

The simplest 
arrangement for 
recording and 
playing MIDI 
music with your 

Keys to Success 

If you have an interest in performing and composing music, you should 
consider a much better, though more expensive, alternative. Adding a 
MIDI keyboard controller to your setup (Figure 3.5) provides you with 
greater versatility and allows you to stick to using soimd modules, which, in 
my opinion, are more suitable for desktop presentations and multimedia 
than are bulky s 3 mthesizers. 

MIDI keyboard controllers send out MIDI data but do not make any 
sounds of their own. They offer several advantages over dedicated key- 
boards attached to synthesizers. For one thing you have a wide range of 
types and styles to choose from. Some keyboards have a soft, mushy feel 
similar to that of an organ, and others offer a heavier, more piano-like 
touch. There are keyboards with only a four- or five-oaave range and 
others that provide a full 88 notes. 

By selecting your keyboard separately, you can base your decision on the 
design and feel of the keyboard while selecting your soimd modules accord- 
ing to their sounds and features. This way you can avoid being stuck with a 
combination you don’t like. If you must travel with your MIDI S)^tem, the 



Figure 3.5 
Adding a MIDI 
keyboard controller 

OUT I ^ 







keyboard can stay at home because it is used only for composing the music, 
not for playing it back. 

Incidentally, MIDI controllers come in forms other than keyboards. There 
are controllers for sax players, guitarists, and drummers, and there are retro- 
fit kits for converting acoustic pianos into MIDI keyboards. Still, MIDI 
keyboard controllers remain the most precise and best-implemented devices 
for MIDI data input. 

si The More the Merrier: 

Expanding Your System 

Once you’ve acquired a MIDI keyboard and soimd module, you may 
decide to expand the size of your desktop orchestra by adding one or more 
sound modules. This is easily done by chaining together the modules using 
their MIDI Thru connectors (Figure 3.6). For a system using several sound 

An Introduction to MIDI 


modules, it’s a good idea to choose from different makes and models to pro- 
vide a richer, wider palette of timbres when combining sotmds. This can 
help to avoid a certain sameness of sounds that can occur with more limited 

Figure 3.6 

Adding more 
sound modules to 
your system 








— ^() 


o »==^ 



More on Interfaces 

If you think you’ll be expanding your MIDI setup in the future with addi- 
tional sound modules, or if you plan to combine your system with an audio or 
a video recorder, I recommend purchasing one of the more expensive MIDI 
interfaces. These units offer several important features. For one thing, they 
attach to both serial ports on the Macintosh, providing 32 channels of MIDI. 
The MIDI Time Piece from Mark of the Unicom can expand that number to 
well over a hundred with the proper software. These interfaces also provide 
timecode reading/writing capabilities, which enable you to synchronize some 
brands of music software to an audio- or videotape recorder. Finally, these units 



provide multiple MIDI In and Out ports so that your S 3 rstem can be con- 
figured in a more efficient and flexible manner (Figure 3.7). 

All Mixed Up 

If you use a basic system like the one shown in Figure 3.3, hooking up the 
audio lines should pose no problem. Most sound modules provide stereo 
output jacks that you simply connea to the stereo input jacks of your hi-fi 
or self-powered speakers. But what do you do if you have several instru- 
ments in your setup? Add an audio mixer to the system. 

Figure 3.7 

The best 


There are many kinds of mixers currently available, ranging in price from 
a few hundred dollars to many thousands of dollars. For the needs of most 
desktop multimedia producers, an inexpensive, rack-mountable line mixer 
works just fine. Then you can take the audio outputs from each instrument 
in the system and plug them into the inputs of the mixer (Figure 3.8). The 
mixer combines the individual signals into a stereo signal and routes it to the 
stereo output jacks. You simply take these outputs and connect them to the 
inputs of your hi-fi or self-powered speakers. Each audio input on the mixer 

An Introduction to MIDI 


has its own volume control, so it’s easy to adjust the loudness of the different 
instrument sounds. 

Some music programs (especially sequencers; see Chapter 5) provide on- 
screen faders that enable you to automate your mixes through the software 
by sending MIDI volume messages during playback (Figure 3.9). This way 

Figure 3.8 

Using a mixer to 
combine audio 





Figure 3.9 
Typical on-screen 

OlliiiiiliiiiiiiiHiiiliil Miner liiiliilililllliillilliiiQil 



you can preset the line mixer and let the program handle the volume ad- 
justments automatically during the performance. When the fader settings 
are saved along with the program’s music file, you can re-create the identi- 
cal mix an)nime you want. 

Bl Samplers, Synths, and Cymbals 

In the broadest sense, electronic instruments fall into one of two large cate- 
gories: synthesizers and samplers. Synthesizers create their sounds either 
by applying voltages to oscillators or by simulating the effects of oscillators by 
applying digital data to complex algorithmic formulas. They synthesize 
their sounds internally. Samplers^ on the other hand, use a completely dif- 
ferent approach to sound production. As with synthesizers, they are avail- 
able in both keyboard and sound module versions. Samplers work by first 
making shon digital recordings, or saynplesy of sounds. These sounds are 
then edited and mapped across the keyboard to create a performance setup 
that can be saved on a disk. Samplers are to music what scanners are to 
graphics: They take an external source, digitize it, and save it to be edited 
and applied as needed. 

Each sample can be played over a specified range, with its pitch deter- 
mined by the key that plays it. Because the sampler is a specialized digital 
recorder, it can use anything as the source for its sounds. If you take several 
samples of a section of basses, cellos, violas, and violins and map them 
across the keyboard, you can create a string ensemble. But samplers aren't 
limited to recording musical instruments. They can record vocal phrases, 
cars crashing, and glass breaking. If you sample several dogs barking and 
map the sounds across the keyboard, you can perform a barking-dog 

You can also experiment with altering sounds. For instance, you might 
sample the sound of a frog and play it down two octaves to produce an 
entirely new animal sound. Or you might turn the sound of timpani into 
the sound of toy bongos by playing the sample up three oaaves. Samplers 
are a favorite tool of sound designers and other audio postproduction pro- 
fessionals, who use them extensively for sound-effects work. Musicians 
appreciate them for their ability to realistically re-create acoustic instrument 

An Introduction to MIDI 


If a sampler lacks the ability to make its own samples, it is called a sample- 
playback module. In recent years, sample-playback modules have increased 
in popularity. Instruments such as E-mu’s Proteus module are well suited 
to music production for desktop presentations. The Proteus lacks the disk 
drive common to most true samplers and instead stores its sounds in ROM. 
This reduces the cost of the unit and increases greatly the speed of access- 
ing the sounds because disk-swapping problems are eliminated. Although 
you can’t add new sounds to the unit, the sounds that it has are quite good. 
Similar produas are sure to follow. 

Samplers lack the extensive sound-creating capabilities that synthesizers 
possess, and they’re not as effeaive at controlling and modifying sounds 
over time as synthesizers are. Unlike synthesizers, samplers also require a 
great deal of memory for their sounds. Samplers do, however, excel at creat- 
ing certain types of sounds and can do things that no synthesizer ever 
could. Some instruments even combine sampled attack sounds with syn- 
thesized sustains to gain more realism with less memory. 

The decision as to which type of module is right for you should be based 
on the kinds of music you’ll be creating, the specific applications that you 
use, and your own personal tastes in sound-production techniques. Many 
musicians include both types of sound modules in their systems to gain the 
best of both worlds. 

Drum machines are specialized sound modules that are designed specifically 
to create percussion sounds. These sounds may be either synthesized or 
sampled; some drum machines mix the two. In addition to the on-board 
percussion sounds (which include drums, cymbals, and Latin instruments), 
drum machines always have a dedicated sequencer that is optimized for 
producing rhythm patterns— typically, one to four measures long. You can 
then combine these patterns in various ways to create longer rhythm tracks. 

Most drum machines come with a number of drum patterns already 
installed in memory, but you can create your own either by entering notes 
one at a time (step entry) or by playing the drum sounds in real time by 
tapping on the appropriate buttons or pads. You can also trigger the inter- 
nal drum sounds from your MIDI keyboard if you prefer. Patterns and 
tracks that you create (by any method) can be transferred to your sequencer 
program for further editing. 



Because drum machines have their own on-board sequencers, they are a little 
trickier to incorporate into the simple MIDI systems that I’ve discussed. To 
avoid conflicts between your software sequencer and the drum machine, I 
recommend working out your rhythm tracks on the drum machine first and 
then transferring them to the computer. The drum machine can then act as 
another playback-only sound module, providing high-quality percussion 
soimds to complement the other instruments in the system. 

Many styles of music do not need a rhythm track, and many MIDI musi- 
cians will be quite satisfied with the drum sounds that come with their 
sound modules, so a drum machine is not an essential element for success- 
ful soundtrack production. Furthermore, many of the high-end sequencer 
programs covered in Chapter 5 offer drum-machine-style recording options 
that may preclude the need for a second device. Still, many people find that 
drum machines provide a valuable means of working out their ideas and 
creating background rhythms to build their other tracks on. 

SCORE - Notation - 24.1.0- 31.1.0 



All about 


I he term sequencer goes back to the early days of analog s3mthesizers when 
circuits were created that could store and trigger a sequence of simple note 
events. Of course, there have been sequencer-like devices for hundreds of 
years if you coimt music boxes and other music-making machines. But, in 
my opinion, the early ancestor of the modern sequencer was surely the 
player piano. It was with the player piano that an important concept be- 
came widely appreciated. A musical performance can be captured and then 
reproduced independently of either the performer or the instrument. 

When a musician sat at a specialized “recording” piano and played a piece 
of music, his performance was captured as a pattern of holes on a roll of 
paper. This was the equivalent of a floppy disk at the turn of the century, 
and it served its purpose quite well. If that paper roll was carried across 
town and installed in a compatible piano, those little holes could re-create 
the original performance by providing the host piano with information on 
notes, rh5fthms, pedaling, etc. 

From our standpoint, though, the great significance of this development 
lies not so much in the reproduction of music but in the fact that the sound 
of the music could be changed while maintaining the performance. If you 
played that roll on a “tack” piano, it would soimd like a harpsichord. If 
you played it on a piano with a piece of felt in front of the strings, it would 
sound soft and muted. And if you played it on a piano that was tuned a 
half-step flat, the music was re-created in another key. 



It wasn’t long before pianists and composers realized that you could edit 
(though not easily) the paper rolls to correct mistakes or create compositions 
unplayable by a single person. The ability to store performance data, to 
provide a means of editing that data, and to allow a variety of sounds to be 
associated with the data presaged the evolution of the modern MIDI 
sequencer by several decades. 

I have taken this brief sojourn in history to stress an important fundamental 
concept: A sequencer does not record sounds the way a tape recorder does. It 
records performance data, which it stores in the form of MIDI messages: note 
on, note off, velocity pitch bend, aftertouch, etc. The ability to choose which 
instrument sounds you’ll attach to this data is what makes a sequencer such a 
powerful tool. It can be both a musical sketch-pad and an intensive editing 
environment for creating a finished product. 

In addition to allowing you to reorchestrate your music easily, sequencers 
provide the power to correct rhythmic inaccuracies, change pitch, and alter 
dynamics and note durations. You can also make broad alterations to your 
pieces by transposing to other ke)^, changing tempos, or rearranging the 
sections of a composition. In this way a sequencer acts much like a word 
processor for music and even has many of the same menu items, such as 
Cut, Copy, and Paste. 

A few years ago the companies that produced sequencer software took 
decidedly different approaches to the handling of MIDI data for editing. 
Over the past couple of years, however, the natural Darwinism of the MIDI 
marketplace has compelled manufacturers to adopt many of the features of 
their competitors. As consumers, we have benefited from this development 
because the current breed of sequencers have evolved into powerful, 
feamre-rich editing environments, and even the less-expensive programs 
boast an impressive list of attributes. Nonetheless, there are differences in 
the architectural designs of these products, as well as some specific quali- 
ties, that will appeal to different people. First let’s explore the characteris- 
tics that most sequencers share before examining individual programs more 

All about Sequencers 


I Sequencer Anatomy 

The main entity that you work with in a sequencer program is called, not 
surprisingly, a sequence. A sequence can consist of an entire composition or 
a few short fragments of music. In theory, its size can range from a single 
note to a seemingly infinite number of notes, limited only by the available 
RAM in your computer. 

Sequences are divided into tracks, which resemble, in fimaion, the tracks on 
a multitrack tape recorder. When you play a sequence, all the tracks associ- 
ated with that sequence play together. The number of tracks provided for 
each sequence varies from one program to another. Inexpensive sequencers 
may provide as few as sixteen tracks, while high-end, pro-level sequencers 
often provide around a hxmdred. 

Don’t confuse tracks with channels. The term channels refers to the 16 
MIDI channels that I discussed in Chapter 3. Channels determine which 
sound modules will respond to which MIDI data as it’s transmitted 
through the cable. Tracks contain the performance data that forms the 

Much of the time each track will be assigned a single MIDI channel. The 
flute part, for example, could be recorded onto track 1 and assigned to play 
on channel 6, which would trigger the appropriate flute sound from the 
corresponding sound module. The oboe might be track 2, channel 3, and 
the clarinet might be track 3, channel 5. 

Most sequencers also allow you to assign more than one MIDI channel to a 
single track. If you assign MIDI channels 3, 6, and 7 to track 1, you can 
have three different instrument sounds responding to the performance data 
on track 1. This is an easy way to combine, or layer, sounds to fatten an 

On the other hand, you will often want to assign several sequencer tracks to 
a single MIDI channel. This is especially useful for creating “exploded” 
drum parts, where the hi-hat is on track 1, the ride C 5 mibal on track 2, the 



snare drum on 3, the kick drum on 4, etc. You then assign these tracks to a 
single MIDI channel to trigger the drum sounds from your sound module. 
Separating the different parts of the drum set enables you to edit each part 
quickly without affecting the others. You might also want to separate the 
right and left hands of a piano part, for instance, and send them to a single 
piano sound on a single channel. It should be clear from these examples 
that a complex orchestration can easily consiune a great many tracks in a 

To compose music on a sequencer, you usually start by recording a track 
and assigning it to an instrument sound. Next, while listening to that track, 
you record a second track. You then listen to both tracks while adding a 
third and repeat the procedure until the composition is complete. The pro- 
cess is very similar to the way you might record a composition on a multi- 
track tape deck. 

Getting Around 


To facilitate the process of maneuvering around in a composition, all 
sequencers have a controls window that is modeled after the transport con- 
trols of a conventional tape deck (Figure 4.1). These controls, however, are 
a significant improvement over the buttons on a mechanical tape recorder 
because they produce precise and instantaneous results at the click of 
a mouse. 

Figure 4.1 

A typical controls 

<ia[>ii t 

MWIH> ?Tor 

Closely associated with the controls window, the counter window (Figure 4.2) 
provides information about your location in a sequence. Most commonly, 
this takes the form of a readout indicating the current measure, beat, and 
fraction of a beat as the music progresses. All sequencers divide their beats 
into subdivisions called ticks, clocks, or pulses. The greater the number of 
these subdivisions, the higher the sequencer’s timing resolution. A higher 
resolution means a more accmate reproduaion of the rh34:hmic nuances in 

All about Sequencers 


a performance. Most pro-level sequencers use a resolution of 480 pulses per 
quarter note (ppqn). Other common figures are 240 and 192 ppqn. In addi- 
tion to the measure/beat indicator, more advanced programs provide an 
elapsed-time readout, and some also offer a SMPTE timecode display for 
working with external devices. 

Figure 4.2 

A counter window 
showing the three 
types of displays 

vV, counter 


q: I6.S8 O 

Most sequencers offer two methods to enter music into the computer. The 
first method, called real-time recording, I have already described. The second 
method, called step entry, enables you to enter notes, one at a time, by 
seleaing each pitch and assigning it a rhythmic value and velocity. Because 
the notes entered this way all have precise rhythmic placement, the result- 
ing music often tends to sound a bit robotic. But this method can be useful 
in situations where a passage would be difficult or impossible to perform. 

If you record in real time, you can use the metronome option (Figure 4.3) 
that all sequencers provide. Most of the time you can choose between hav- 
ing the Macintosh produce the clicks internally or having your MIDI 
sound module play a note that you specify. You can also elect to have a one- 
or two-measure count-off before the sequencer begins recording. 

Figure 4.3 

A metronome 
options dialog box 


O Internal click 





Accented nodem-l 



Unaccented: riodem-l 




I Cancel | 



Fascinatin' Rhythm 

Once you have recorded some music onto a track, you can edit the place- 
ment of the notes to correa for any rhythmic inaccuracies or to tighten up 
the performance. This process, known as quantization, involves moving the 
notes to align them with the nearest specified beat. Any rhythmic value, 
such as quarter note, eighth note, sixteenth note, etc., may be chosen. If 
you select eighth-note quantization, for example, all notes in the selected 
region will be moved to the nearest eighth-note beat. 

Quantization can be a double-edged sword, however. Overly quantized 
passages can soimd mechanized and lifeless. To counteract this situation, 
many sequencers now offer a humanize fimaion, which introduces a small 
degree of random inacciuacy to music that has been step-entered or heavily 
quantized. Some programs also offer a range of quantizing strengths that 
allow you to select how rigidly the quantization will be applied and to 
which notes. 

Command Performance 

In addition to quantization, there are a number of other global editing com- 
mands that are now commonplace in sequencer programs. The transpose 
function enables you to change the key of any selected area by raising or 
lowering all the notes in the region by a specified amoimt. The more 
sophisticated programs also allow you to change from major to minor or 
vice versa. In a similar manner, sequencers can change the velocity and 
duration of a group of notes according to various user-defined criteria. 

si Through the Window 

Whether you’re selecting groups of notes for global editing or trying to 
change the value of a single note at the microscopic level, you need an intu- 
itive and versatile editing environment to achieve the best results. To this 
end, sequencers offer one or more of three different types of windows to 
display MIDI data for selection and editing. 

All about Sequencers 


The event list window (Figure 4.4) is the most common and the best suited 
to making precise alterations of individual MIDI event parameters. The 
window displays events alphanumerically in a vertical list, using small icons 
or abbreviations to indicate the kinds of events being represented. Each line 
on the list includes the measure and beat of each event followed by the 
relevant data. A note event, for instance, would include the pitch name 
along with values for the velocity and duration. Any value can be changed 
with precision by selecting it and entering a new number. You can selea 
groups of notes quickly by clicking and dragging across several lines, and 
some programs allow selection of noncontiguous events as well. 

Figure 4.4 

A typical event-list 

Euen t 

2317)000 A«7 


37)1 |l 00 /Eb4 



43 1 1342 /Eb3 

i72 *64 


43|iai02 /Bb3’ 


"4)T63* ■ 



"3IT62 " 


in 0164“ 

“2IT23 " ' 

4^^348" /6)'3 



43141100 /Bb3 

198 164 


4S4j345 /bb4’ 

i 116164* 


4^j023 AilO 


43RB45 7r>3 

471 164 


43)611 OS ^Bb3 




468 164 


43f7jrd2 /Ab3 

4l 10164 


Many sequencers base their editing on a graphic display window commonly 
referred to as a “piano-roll” display (Figure 4.5). In this approach, notes 
appear as bars or lines of var 5 nng lengths— the longer the line, the longer 
the note duration. The note events are superimposed on a grid that repre- 
sents pitch along the vertical axis and time along the horizontal axis. The 
appearance is reminiscent of the old paper piano rolls. 

Graphic displays offer the advantage of a much more intuitive user inter- 
face, which more closely resembles the appearance of written music. Event 
lists, although allowing for great accuracy, do not provide a very good sense 
of elapsed time or note relationships the way a graphic display does. By 
selecting a note, you can drag it up or down to change its pitch and left or 
right to change its position in a measure. Groups of notes can be selected 
and moved together to a new location. Duration is altered by grabbing and 



Figure 4.5 

A graphic editing 
window, often 
called a piano-roll 

~P Step Editor 





Tuplet =3:2 

Articulation = 10093 | 



2:2:096 |c«4 

T' |CI 1 






■ 1 . ? . 

1 . . 1 

1 i • 

■ r- 


__ — 



, — 



— — 

s • 

. * ■- 

— . 

4>| 1 




extending or shortening the length of the note line. Many editing aaivities 
lend themselves more readily to one or the other type of display. For this 
reason, most sequencers provide both types of windows, with any changes 
made in one window reflected instantaneously in the other. 

The third and least common display, the notation window^ represents notes 
in the form of standard musical notation (Figure 4.6). This is the least accu- 
rate and least versatile of the window displays, because standard notation 
does not indicate precise rhythmic placements or durations. It is a much 
more general view of the music that, nonetheless, offers some unique bene- 
fits for those who read music. For example, music notation provides the 
best way to analyze a passage harmonically. If you hear a wrong note in a 
chord in measure 7 on beat 3, the mistake will stand out more clearly when 
seen in the context of musical notes rather than lines on a grid or numbers 
on a list. For similar reasons, it’s also easier to work with melodies in this 

One disadvantage of the notation display is that it takes up a lot of space 
horizontally on the screen to show a relatively small amount of elapsed 
time. This can make it difficult to get an overview of large seaions of 
music. Many people, though, feel more comfortable working with standard 
notation and will appreciate the option of seeing their music with notes, 
flags, beams, and clefs. 

All about Sequencers 


Figure 4.6 

A few programs 
also display notes in 
standard musical 

Sum of the Parts 

Sequencer programs use two different approaches to structuring and assem- 
bling sequences. Some programs favor the linear-style, or “through- 
composed,” approach, in which a sequence is seen as one long continuous 
unit. Others favor the pattern-song approach, in which you create sequences 
out of smaller sections that are combined into a larger sequence. 

In truth, the two styles are often not as different as they once were. Many 
pattern-song-style sequencers allow you to create sections of any length so 
that one long block can be an entire sequence. On the other hand, some 
linear-style sequencers now offer options that enable you to assemble sev- 
eral shorter sequences into one large composition. Different companies, 
however, have different philosophies about the best way to compose music. 
It would pay to examine this aspect of the programs before you purchase 
one, especially if you write exclusively in one style. 

In Chapter 5, we’ll take a look at some of the leading software sequencers 
currently on the market. 


Adagio M.M 

sattn vncc 

at the Top 

he programs discussed in this chapter— Performer, Vision, Beyond, Master 
Tracks Pro 5, and Cubase— represent the highest level of sequencing soft- 
ware currently available. They are intended to satisfy the demands of pro- 
fessional composers, but will serve equally well for less advanced users or 
those whose interests lean more toward precise, flexible editing than simply 
capturing performances. At an average retail price of around $500 (except 
for Beyond), they are clearly aimed at the serious MIDI user who doesn’t 
want to be limited by software lacking power and control. High-end se- 
quencers all provide at least two or three different editing environments, 
support for SMPTE timecode, real-time editing capability, and several 
modes for recording data. They can handle complex MIDI configurations 
and are structured to accommodate the most intricate musical composi- 
tions. Many of these programs are large and require at least two megs of 
RAM and a hard disk— be sure to check the system requirements before 

si Performer 

Performer, from Mark of the Unicorn, is one of the oldest and most popu- 
lar of the professional-level sequencers. Its impressive list of features com- 
bined with its jazzy-looking, monochrome graphics has made it a kind of 
benchmark of the music industry. Although Performer is one of the most 
powerful sequencers on the market, its layered structure and thoughtfully 



designed, intuitive user interface make it relatively easy to navigate the 

Performer centers its activities on its Tracks window, which is actually two 
different windows (Tracks List and Tracks Overview) integrated into a 
single work area that allows you to create, define, and organize the contents 
of each sequence (Figure 5.1). The Tracks List displays the names of, 

MIDI channels for, and other important information about the instruments 
and sounds that form your composition. Performer lets you create as many 
tracks as you need, limited only by the available memorj^ in your computer. 
Furthermore, both the modem and printer ports can be used at the same 
time and performance data can be recorded simultaneously on several tracks 
from multiple MIDI channels. If you prefer, you can list the “devices” 
(synths, modules, etc.) by name with their associated “patches” (instrument 
sounds) rather than by MIDI channel numbers. A Comments column pro- 
vides space to annotate each track with information concerning the details 
of your setup and performance. 

Figure 5.1 
Performer’s Tracks 
window shows the 
presence of MIDI 
data in a graphic 
format along with a 
list of the instru- 
ments and settings 
in a sequence. 

iracKs uiinaoui 


i start OOlOOO 

: End 70111300 






10 M 






1 ea 



Slap Bass sound 


▼ i 

i ! ► M5 

1 Marimba 

Marimba mapped to 1 27 


(012 Vibe nMe) 


■MM : 

; MMM : 

1 (HMI 

1 1 

1 fc i ► M4 

: Xylophone 

w i 

& ►MS 


High Bells 




(01 7 Verb Flute) 




Kick, Snare 





HI Hat 

ClosedF»»1 /MedO»»1 

1 ■■■ 

^ !► MM 

Cymbal, Tom* 

Cymbal-C*«2, Htom=C2 


Synth B Section 

(081 Emperor) 

!► MI2 

Orchestra Hits 

Han Strings 
151 Orch Hits 


MMB i 

► M12 


j i 




unc 9 

The Tracks Overview displays MIDI data as equal-sized segments, each repre- 
senting a user-defined number of measures. Black segments represent measures 
with a large number of MIDI events. Gray segments represent measures with 
a small number of events. Measures with no data are left white. 

This overview of track activity makes it easy to determine which instru- 
ments are playing and when they start and stop. Once you find an area that 
requires closer examination, you can click on the appropriate segment and 

Sequencing at the Top 

47 E 

immediately enter the editing window of your choice, which will display 
that segment’s data in greater detail. 

Above the tracks, the Time Ruler provides a reference for locating your 
position in the sequence. Typically, this appears as a series of measure num- 
bers, but Performer can also display elapsed time and SMPTE timecode 
numbers if you are working with film or video. 

Recording and playback in Performer are initiated in the Controls window 
(Figure 5.2), which emulates the transport-control panel of a conventional 
tape recorder. Aside from the usual Play, Record, Rewind, Pause, and Stop 
buttons, there are a number of buttons along the bottom of the window that 
activate certain automating functions involving recording, rewinding, shut- 
tling between points, and auto punch-in/out capability. Between the main 
transport controls and the auxiliary buttons, a scroll bar with a movable 
indicator follows the progress of the sequence. By dragging the indicator to 
a new position, you can immediately begin recording or playing back from 
that point. 

Figure 5.2 
Performer’s Con- 
solidated Controls 
Panel combines its 
transport controls 
with its Metronome 
and Counter win- 

Fii7 Track7 j Mernorq } Start : 0|1 1000 j Stop : 70|1 10^ I chunT Auttm^ | 

Performer allows you to access all of the above transport controls and many 
of the auxiliary functions from the Macintosh keyboard or a MIDI control- 
ler keyboard. The Remote Controls window (Figure 5.3) displays the avail- 
able functions and allows you to designate which MIDI notes or Macintosh 
keys will trigger them. Unnecessary controls can be deleted and others can 
be combined into subgroups. Having remote-control capability enables you 
to access the essential operating controls of Performer without having to 
reach for the mouse or take your hands away from your MIDI keyboard. 
Depending on your studio setup, this can be a valuable feature. 



Figure 5.3 
The Remote Con- 
trols window lets 
you assign a MIDI 
note or Macintosh 
key equivalent to 
any of numerous 
transport functions. 

Remote Conirols 



GZDR«mot* MasUr 





BB) Transport Controls 
^1^ Play /Stop togglo 




















i 1 



qi> Rewind 


i i 



<1]|> Record 










Memory Rewind 





Memory Shuttle 





<ll> Count Off 










^ Overdub 





^ SlovForward 





4]^ Fast Forward 





<0^ Slow Reverse 





<]|I>Fast Reverse 





# Click On/Off 





<0^ Memory On/Off 





#Set Times 










Chatn Chunks 




Opt - c 

^ Skip Forward 





Skip Backward 





(BBChunk Select 




Opt [Enter] 

Working in conjunction with the Controls window, the Counter window 
shows the current location in the sequence. Usually this is represented in 
terms of measures, beats, and ticks, but Performer also provides the option 
of displaying elapsed time and SMPTE time. By clicking on any munber in 
the display, you can type in a new location and instantly start from that 
spot. With a timing resolution of 480 ticks per quarter note, this allows for 
extremely precise positioning within the sequence. 

Below the Coxmter display, four buttons lead directly to the different edit- 
ing windows while a fifth sets loops within a selected region. Closely allied 
with the two windows above, the Metronome window displays the current 
meter and tempo of the music. In the middle of the window, a graphic 
slider can be dragged toward its plus or minus indicators to change the 
tempo in real time. By switching from manual to auto mode, you change 
the slider to a moving indicator that responds to the programmed tempo 
changes in the sequence. Along the bottom of the window, several buttons 
access additional windows for combining and marking sequences and for 
creating sliders. 

Sequencing at the Top 


The Control, Counter, and Metronome windows can all be displayed as 
separate entities but are put to best advantage when combined into what 
Mark of the Unicorn calls the Consolidated Controls Panel, which inte- 
grates the three into a large unified display. This display, along with the 
Tracks window, provides access to nearly everything necessary for record- 
ing and playing sequences. To edit a performance, you can enter one of 
three editing environments that offer a wealth of features to handle the 
most demanding tasks. 

By double-clicking any track name, you can directly enter the Event List 
window (Figure 5.4). This display shows all MIDI events in a sequence 
along with the associated data. The traditional event-list format shows the 
time location in measures, beats, and ticks followed by an icon indicating 
the type of MIDI event being represented (Figure 5.5). 

Figure 5.4 

The Event List 
window uses 
numbers, text, and 
icons to represent 
MIDI data. 

^^,^^:f^;QQ;|T]X\Euent List 

llOllobo Eb Major 

12/0 clicks 

i j i 2jbb6^>‘Bt>3 V68 ■ »o ' 


11121230 /G4 




21061225’ >F4 








^03i027 >C4 

* 8b 



SibsibsT >Db4 




3lb3ii’ib A»ib 

" i’s"' ' 

3|b3jl34 /C4 




3i04ibb6 ’/C4 







3|bilbbb /Bb4 




31081124 i«34 

sjibibbb /Ab4 
3|iij22S Ami 




1 1000 

3|i2jbbb /G4 




3ii2j2^ /FA 




4|b3t2Ki 'iG4 



.. j loop 


li 4ir: 


i2 times 

4106^0 /D4 ; 


TO 01240 

41071000 >Eb4 < 


t"b 11240 

All data pertaining to these events can be clicked on and edited by typing 
in the new values. For MIDI note data you can also click on a parameter 
and change its value by playing the note from your MIDI keyboard. For 
example, to change a wrong note, simply click on the note name in the 
window and play the correct note from the MIDI controller. Velocity and 



Figure 5.5 

A pop-up window 
showing the types 
of data that you can 
include in the 
Event List 


Location Piich On Off Duration 


T64 1(000 


Pitch Bend 


Patch Change 


Mono Key Wessi^^^ 


Poly Key Pressure 



IP Markers 


Meter Change 

Eb Major 

J ■ 120 h 

tempo Change 

Other parameters can also be changed in the same way. By clicking on the 
speaker button, you can hear each note as you select it, and another button 
enables you to insert a MIDI event of any kind, anywhere in the list. 

Since MIDI systems and editing requirements vary from one situation to 
the next. Performer provides a View Filter (Figure 5.6) that allows you to 
customize your event lists by selecting which parameters will appear in the 
window and which will be excluded. 

Although the Event List provides an excellent means of editing individual 
note values, the Graphic Editing window (Figure 5.7) offers an alternative 
that you may find more intuitive. Here the notes appear as elongated black 

Figure 5.6 
The View Filler 
lets you selea what 
MIDI data can 
appear in the 
Event List. 

Sequencing at the Top 


bars against a grid, marked with measures or the same time-related options 
as in the other windows. In typical piano-roll style, a keyboard along the 
left edge provides a pitch reference, and time is indicated along the top. 
Beneath the note grid, an additional area displays the corresponding veloc- 
ity, aftertouch, or other continuous data with tiny icons in a graphlike 

Figure 5.7 

Graphic Editing 
window. Notice the 
four selected notes 
in the center. 

Graphic Editing lilindoiu (Nocturne in Eb) 

5I06II20 F3*6; 

3 1 6) 41101000 /C4 i75 TO l|240 || 

Unit > J liOOObe^ts 


> 3 

\ • 

j ; i 

7 8 









i 1 



1 ....J 

— — . . . 

L-._ 1 




1% >34 


- 40 

» V r 



\ V 






wik ■> ‘ II 

Notes can be selected individually or in groups. Many editing conventions 
common to paint programs apply to this window as well. For instance, you 
can drag a seleaion box over a group of notes for editing or option-drag to 
copy a note to another location. A zoom in/out box allows you to see either 
a greater area of the performance or to get a very close look at the individ- 
ual notes for making precise placements. 

When you select a note, its event parameters appear above the grid in the 
Event Information box, where they can be edited as in the Event List. At 
the same time a small grab-handle appears on the right side of the note bar, 
which allows you to shorten or lengthen the note to affea its duration. The 
same speaker button as in the Event List appears in the Graphic Editing 
window along with the ability to insert notes (or other data) individually 
anywhere on the grid. 



Figure 5.8 
The Notation 
window displays 
MIDI data using 
standard musical 

For those composers who prefer to see their music in standard notation. 
Performer provides a Notation Editing window (Figure 5.8), which dis- 
plays the MIDI data on a staff with notes, rests, and ties. Editing here is 
similar to editing in the graphic display, although it’s a little more awkward. 
Unquantized music may fill the display with an excessive number of ties 
and rests, which can make editing ounbersome. Nonetheless, some types of 
editing situations are especially well suited to a standard notational display. 

As in the graphic display, notes can be selected and dragged to new posi- 
tions to change their pitches and location in the measure. Notes can be 
inserted and deleted, and the speaker button allows you to hear the notes as 
they’re selected. Both the Graphic Editing and the Notation windows pro- 
vide a moving ciusor while the sequence is playing, which helps in follow- 
ing the music. These windows along with the Event List also offer an 
auto-scroll option that keeps the display current with the sequence as it 

In Performer, a sequence can be a single composition from beginning to 
end, but for those who are less oriented to a linear approach to composing 
and prefer a more sectional approach. Performer offers another option. 

Sequencing at the Top 


Several sequences can be combined into a larger piece. When treated this 
way, the smaller sequences are called Chunks, and the larger structure is 
called a Song. 

The Song window (Figure 5.9) graphically represents the arrangement of 
the Chunks, showing their order and allowing you to change the structure 
of the song by dragging the Chunks around and repositioning them where 
you want. Adjacent Chunks are played one after the other, and Chunks 
arranged vertically are played simultaneously. When you play a song, the 
Skip button in the Controls window (Figure 5.2) will jiunp playback to the 
next or previous Chunk shown in the Chunks window. 

Figure 5.9 

Performer lets you 
create arrangements 
by assembling 
Chunks in the Song 

As part of its extensive editing capabilities. Performer boasts many sophisti- 
cated global commands. Its Quantize dialog box (Figure 5.10) offers a num- 
ber of variables affecting not only note resolution but also the strength and 
sensitivity of the quantizing effect. By changing these variables, you can 
tighten up a performance without ruining the feel of the music or making it 
soimd mechanical. 

The velocities of selected notes can be altered in a ntimber of wa}rs through 
the Change Velocity dialog box (Figure 5.1 1), which offers enough options 
to accommodate almost any situation. The Change Duration dialog box has 
a similar niunber of options for altering note durations. 



Figure 5.10 

The Quantize 
dialog box offers 
several options to 
adjust rhythmic 
placement while 
retaining musicality. 

Figure 5.11 

Performer lets you 
change note veloci- 
ties in a variety of 
ways— a similar 
dialog box affects 

Performer’s Transpose command brings up a window that includes a Trans- 
pose Map along with several options for changing keys. You can transpose 
diatonically or by interval. You can change keys from any root to any other 
or from any mode to any other. You can also transpose into or out of any 
custom scale of your own design and up or down by any number of octaves. 
This is clearly a very powerful feature. 

Sequencing at the Top 


Performer also provides an amazing array of on-screen, graphic faders, or 
sliders (Figure 5.12). You can use these sliders to control any kind of contin- 
uous MIDI data, such as volume, pitch bend, panning, and filtering. You 
create your own custom panels in a variety of formats (such as large, small, 
vertical, or horizontal), label each control, and assign it to perform a func- 
tion. During recording or playback, you can move the slider handle to gen- 
erate MIDI data, or the sliders can respond automatically to data already in 
the sequence. You can also combine several sliders into subgroups to create 
sophisticated mixing consoles for more elaborate compositions. 

Figure 5.12 
Performer lets you 
create a number of 
slider consoles in 
any configuration to 
control any kind 
of continuous 
MIDI data. 

To help you keep track of the MIDI data flow in your system. Performer 
offers the MIDI Monitor (Figure 5.13). This handy display indicates 
incoming MIDI data according to channel, port, and general type. The 
MIDI Monitor provides a valuable source of visual feedback to aid you in 
troubleshooting problems in your MIDI setup and reminds you of where 
the current activity is taking place. 

One final feature worth noting. Tap Tempo, allows you to create a tempo 
map in real time before, after, or during recording by tapping the tempo 
from your MIDI keyboard. This allows you to include accelerandos and 
ritards in the music while still maintaining the proper relationship to the 
measures and beats in the sequence. 



Figure 5.13 
The MIDI Moni- 

tor lets you see the 

presence of MIDI 
activity on each 
channel in your 


As you can see, Performer is a very impressive program. When Mark of the 
Unicom adds new features it goes all the way, providing numerous options, 
great flexibility, and powerful implementations. It’s no wonder this secpiencer 
has garnered such a large and loyal following among profbsional musicians. 

When Opcode Systems introduced Vision in 1988, it created quite a stir in 
the music industry. With a 480-ppqn resolution and later, with its support 
for color as well, here was a program with myriad features, designed to 
compete directly with Performer. Since then it has more than lived up to its 
promise and continues to evolve as Opcode refines its capabilities. 

Providing such a plethora of features, however, comes at some cost. The 
initial setup and many of the functions are not quite as intuitive as they 
might be, so the learning curve is a bit steeper than for some other sequenc- 
ers in this class. Still, once you know your way around this program, you’ll 
be surprised at some of the unique and powerful options that it offers. 

One of the important concepts behind Vision’s design is that it aa not only as 
a recording, editing, and playback system but also as an environment for ex- 
tensive MIDI-management capabilities, including integration with Galaxy, 
Opcode’s editor/librarian program (see Chapter 9). To this end. Opcode 
includes a system extension (INIT) called the Opcode MIDI System (OMS), 
which must be installed before you use Vision. 

With OMS you create a Studio Setup document by defining all of the 
instruments in your system (along with their MIDI connections) and enter- 
ing the information graphically in the Studio Setup window (Figure 5.14). 

si Vision 

Sequencing at the Top 


Figure 5.14 
The Studio Setup 
window represents 
your MIDI system 
with icons con- 
nected by cables. 

studio Setup 

IDO,Chs. 1-16 

Sid. Int»rf4c», Modem 


1 M-8000 


1 \tnpl Proleus 1 

1 SC-55 

^ Std. Inlerfece, Printer 



Once you’ve done this, your MIDI devices will appear in a pop-up menu in 
Vision so that you can refer to them by name rather than by MIDI channel 
and port. 

Vision’s output mapping assignments are displayed in the Instruments 
window (Figure 5.15), which lists the devices in your MIDI system along 
with their MIDI output channels. Here you can mute or solo a track, scale 
its velocity, transpose its output, and establish its keyboard range. An in- 
strument using more than one MIDI channel will have more than one line 
along with the attendant parameters. 

When you first open Vision, you are presented with three windows. At the 
top of the screen, the Control Bar window (Figure 5.16) displays a number 
of buttons for controlling and editing sequences. The transport controls are 

Figure 5.15 
The Instruments 
window in Vision 
shows your MIDI 
devices along with 
their channel 
assignments and 
several other 

MIDI Instruments 


1 Instrument 

1 Name 



MIDI Output 
Device Chan 








Korg til 









Guitar 1 

’Korg Hi 

2 " 







korg Hi -3 1 


korg hi 
















Strings | 

Protous 1 









Piano 1 

Proteus i 









Proteus 1-7 ] 

Proteus i 









Proteus 1-8 ] 

Proteus i 









Brass 1 










bruins ] 










SC-55- i f 1 







c -1 



SC-55- 12 1 








c -1 




similar in function to those in other sequencers. In Vision, the Record but- 
ton displays the current sequence by letter name. The Play button becomes 
a Pause button once the sequence starts and becomes a Continue button 
while in Pause mode. All of the transport controls are labeled with their 
Macintosh keyboard equivalents. To the left of the Record control, the Step 
Record button opens the Step window, which provides a number of op- 
tions for entering notes one at a time. 

Figure 5.16 
The Control Bar 


1 1. 1.< 1 



Reccid 1 Ploy I Stop 5 • 1 ♦ 1 88 

At 1 il 1 • 00:00:02:22 

&d 3 Korg M1-I 


Tib Spice Rilurn • • 

& J- 140.00 
^ Internal 


1 Replace HWciMbr Note 


5~ 4 

5 6 7 

8 9 

El Queue □ Loop Record 

■Q 42308 

To the right of the transport controls, the Counter display gives the usual 
readout in measures, beats, and “units.” By clicking on the thin reaangle 
beneath the counter, you can change the display to indicate SMPTE time- 
code. A second click brings up a combination display with both sets of 

The three buttons on the far left of the Control Bar open the List window, 
the Graphic window, and the Sequence window, respeaively. The Wait for 
Note button prevents the sequencer from beginning to record until it re- 
ceives its first MIDI note. This button can be changed to provide a speci- 
fied number of measures for a count-off. Below this button, a control for 
initiating loop-recording mode gives you the option of recording with a 
drum-machine approach, where a number of measures repeat over and over 
while new material is layered onto old. Like Performer, Vision offers sev- 
eral other recording options, which include Replacement mode (new notes 
replace the old). Punch in/out, and Overdub, in which new notes can be 
added to a previous recording. 

On the far right of the Control Bar, you will find a separate area that dis- 
plays information about the available memory, synchronization settings, 
master tempo and, at the top, the Thru Instrument and Program settings. 
The Thru Instrument setting indicates which sjmthesizer you will hear. 

Sequencing at the Top 

59 i 

and record into the sequence^ when you begin. The Program setting tells 
you which specific patchy or sound, is selected for that device. 

The second window in the group, the File window (Figure 5.17), appears 
below the Control Bar. The File window displays all of the sequences that 
make up a particular file— you can have up to 26 sequences in a file, each 
designated by a letter of the alphabet. A clever feature in Vision allows you 
to play your sequences in real time, in any order, by typing the appropriate 
letters on the Macintosh keyboard. This is a great way to experiment with 
the structure of a piece by trying different combinations. 

Figure 5.17 
The File window 
lists the sequences 
by letter, allowing 
easy playback of up 
to 26 sequences in a 
file from the Mac- 
intosh keyboard. 

File LUindoiii ^ 

1 Nev Sequervce 1 1 New Gen Seq"l 

A « 


N • 


B « 


0 • 


C ♦ 


P • 


D ♦ 


0 • 


E • 


R • 


F • 


S • 


G • 


T • 


H • 


U • 


1 • 


V • 


J • 


V » 


K • 


X ♦ 


L • 


y • 

Parts List 

n • 


z • 

The Song 

You can also play sequences in a specific order by using the Queue mode in 
the Control Bar window. You type the sequence letters into the Queue box 
in the order that you want them to be played. Each sequence then waits for 
its turn as Vision plays them one after the other. Additionally, up to nine 
sequences can be played simultaneously by using the Players option. 

The third part of the opening screen display is the Sequence window (Fig- 
ure 5.18), where you can change most of the parameters of a sequence 
except for the actual notes themselves. This window displays and allows 
you to edit such things as meter, tempo, sequence length, looping, and 
instrumentation. Here you designate which of the tracks to mute, solo, or 
record-enable. Each sequence can have up to 99 tracks, and much of the 
information in each track can be changed while the sequence is playing. 
Sequences can be combined into larger sequences at which point the 
smaller parts become known as Subsequences— the equivalent of Chunks 
in Performer. 



Figure 5.18 

The Sequence 
window lets you 
specify the param- 
eters of a se- 
quence, such as 
meter, tempo, 
length, and 

Vision provides another great feature: Play Quantization. This form of 
quantization occurs only during playback and does not alter the note data. 

It allows you to try several different note resolutions without changing your 
original performance. Once you decide on a resolution, you can make the 
change permanent by using Edit quantization, with its more versatile 

Vision also offers a sophisticated feanue for creating generated sequences. By 
applying a number of variables to some prerecorded track data, you can 
create a new performance that is different from, but related to, the original. 
This can produce some very interesting and useful musical material. 

Vision provides two types of windows for editing MIDI events. The first 
type, the Graphic window, displays track events in the standard piano-roll 
configuration (Figure 5.19). Along the top of the window, several buttons 
enable you to access various editing options. 

The first button allows you to zoom in to gain greater precision or to zoom 
out for a larger overview of the grid. The next button, the Quantize Resolu- 
tion button, opens a pop-up menu displaying the 21 different note values 
that you can choose for quantizing your music. Next to this is the Quantize 
Cursor button, which limits the cursor’s selection range to increments that 
match the note value set in the Quantize Resolution menu. For instance, if 
you choose a half-note quantization value, the cursor will jump in half-note 
blocks when you select regions for editing. 

Sequencing at the Top 


Figure 5.19 

Vision’s Graphic 
window displays 
both note events 
and continuous 
controller data. 

The middle button in the group, the Mogrify button, displays a pop-up 
menu that contains most of the commands from the Edit and Do menus 
(Figure 5.20). The Marquee button lets you drag a seleaion box over a 
group of notes as you would select an area in a paint program. The I-beam 
button allows you to select regions of the grid in two ways: Dragging the 
I-beam horizontally selects all notes that fall within the selected area of 
time, regardless of pitch. Dragging vertically along the left margin selects 
all notes within the desired pitch range. 

Figure 5.20 

Clicking the 
Mogrify button 
opens this pop-up 
menu for quickly 
selecting editing 

Redo Legato 

Cut Selection 
Copy Selection 
Paste Selection 
Clear Selection 

Merge Selection 
Insert Clipboard 
Repeat Paste... 


Get Times from Clipboard 

Insert Blank Time 
Delete Time 
Moue Events... 

Transpose Selection^. 
Quantize Selection 
Set Up Quantize... 
Modify Notes... 

Set Instrument... 


Reverse Time 
Scale Time... 

Change Tempo... 

Play from Selection 
Play Selection 
Jump to Selection 
Select by Rule... 

Select All 

Split Notes... 



The Pencil button enables you to insert notes into the grid. At the top of 
the window, the Cursor Position display gives numerical information con- 
cerning the location of the cursor to help you position new notes. In some 
views of the note grid, a treble and bass clef provide a sort of hybrid note 
display that attempts to combine some features of standard notation with 
the piano-roll display— a useful addition, though not as versatile as a sepa- 
rate notation window. 

Vision, like Performer, offers an audible feedback option that plays a note 
when it’s selected or dragged up and down the grid. But Vision also pro- 
vides a “note-scrubbing” feature that lets you drag a vertical line across the 
grid to manually play sections of the sequence out of tempo— a very useful 
tool for pinpointing an exact spot in the music. 

Directly below the piano-roll display lies the Strip Chart. This area displays 
a variety of information that pertains to the notes above. Note velocity, 
continuous controller events, program changes, fader events, and even text 
such as lyrics and copyright notices are graphically displayed in the Strip 
Chart. You can edit this data easily using the same drawing and selecting 
tools as above. You can also quickly redraw and reshape continuous con- 
troller data graphs using several tools and menu options. 

The List window (Figure 5.21) contains the same information as the 
Graphic window, except now it is displayed in a chronological list. Mea- 
sure and beat numbers are followed by note names, duration, velocity, and 
other types of data in a standard event-list format. At the top of the win- 
dow, four buttons provide access to several display and editing options. 

Clicking the Insert Event button opens a pop-up menu that allows you to 
insert any kind of data into the list (Figure 5.22). The Quantize Resolution 
and Mogrify buttons function the same as in the Graphic window. The last 
button allows you to include a SMPTE timecode display with each event. 

Vision supports up to 32 graphic faders arranged in a single- or double- 
column format in its Faders window (Figure 5.23). The faders can send 
tempo and MIDI controller data in real time that you can record into your 
sequence. On playback they act as automated faders, moving and displaying 
the current values as the sequence progresses. Although Vision doesn’t 

Sequencing at the Top 


Figure 5.21 

Vision’s List win- 
dow is similar to 
without the icons. 

Figure 5.22 

Clicking the Insert 
Event button opens 
a pop-up menu 
offering a large 
selection of MIDI 
and non-MIDI data. 


Pitch Bend 
Controller ^ 

After Touch 
Poly Aftertouch 

System Exclusiue 
Subsequence ► 


Cue Point 

offer the great number of fader types and console configurations that Per- 
former doeSj its faders, nonetheless, provide the same basic functions as the 
sliders in Performer. 

Another feature, common to both programs, is the ability to control the 
operations of the sequencer remotely from a MIDI keyboard. Vision calls 
this feature MIDIKeys. To use MIDIKeys you enter a MIDI event into 
the MIDIKeys window and assign it to play the Macintosh keyboard 
equivalent for each sequencer operation that you want to control. Although 
this approach is slightly less direct than that used by Performer, the result is 
essentially the same. MIDIKeys can also be used to trigger a keyboard 
equivalent for the Tap Tempo feature that lets you record and play back 



Figure 5.23 
Vision supports 
up to 32 graphic 
faders in its Faders 

while the Master Tempo changes in real time to reflect the speed of your 
key taps. 

Vision has gained steadily in popularity during the past two years mainly 
because of its great power and the number of options that it offers. It has 
led the way in the introduction of new features, which has helped establish 
its solid foothold in the pro-level sequencer market and has helped set the 
stride for the future of sequencing software. 

SI Master Tracks Pro 5 

While other high-end sequencer programs have distinguished themselves 
by adding an ever-growing list of sometimes arcane features, Master Tracks 
Pro 5, from Passport, has built its reputation on its simple, straightforward, 
inmitive design. Though it lacks some of the more sophisticated but eso- 
teric editing options, it is still very much a professional-level sequencer, 
with the ability to read timecode, map instruments, edit continuous control- 
ler data, and scale time. 

The Transport window provides the standard tape-deck controls in a clear 
and logical arrangement (Figure 5.24). To the left of the controls, a counter 
field displays the current location in the sequence with measiues, beats, and 
“clocks.” Pro 5 has a timing resolution of 240 clocks per beat— not as high 
as many of its competitors but certainly adequate for most applications. 

Sequencing at the Top 


Below the measure indicator, a second display provides an elapsed-time 
reading, which can be adapted for use with SMPTE timecode. Selecting 
and changing any number in the measure display will move you to that 
position in the sequence. 

The transport controls are mostly self-explanatory. The Rewind button 
moves you back in one measure increments each time you click it. Clicking 
and holding the button moves you back continuously by measures, and 
double-clicking returns you to the start of the sequence. Fast Forward is 
similar to Rewind, except in the other direction. Double-chcking the button 
moves you to the end of the sequence. You can operate all of the transport 
controls from the Macintosh keyboard by using their keyboard equivalents. 

Figure 5.24 

Pro 5’s Transport 
window provides 
“tape-deck” controls 
in a clear and logical 

To the right of the transport controls, there are six additional buttons, 
which supplement the main controls. When Auto is activated, it automati- 
cally returns you— after stopping the sequence— to the point at which 
recording or playback last began. The Thru control allows you to set the 
MIDI port and channel (or channels) that the computer will pass on to 
your soimd modules from the MIDI controller keyboard. This determines 
what soimd you’ll hear while performing during the recording. 

The Count In button provides you with a one-measure metronome lead-in 
before recording or playback, and the Click button toggles the metronome 
on and off, which can be set to play internally from the Macintosh or from 
a MIDI device. Sync determines whether or not the sequencer will syn- 
chronize to an internal or external timing source. 

The Record Mode button selects and displays one of four Special Record 
modes: Overdub, Punch-in, Looped Record, and Looped Overdub. Over- 
dub and Punch-in work essentially the same as in the other sequencers. 



Looped Record repeats a designated section and replaces the previously 
recorded data with the current performance each time the seaion repeats. 
Looped Overdub provides drum-machine-style recording by retaining 
and playing back the previous material while adding in the current 

The Tempo window, which resembles its counterpart in Performer, pro- 
vides a slider for making temporary changes to a sequence’s tempo, while 
displaying the current tempo, meter, and beat. 

The Track Editor window (Figure 5.25) is Pro 5’s main window for view- 
ing, organizing, and setting the parameters of each sequence. The left half 
of the window provides names and settings for the individual tracks, and 
the right half indicates with a graphic display the presence of MIDI data in 
those tracks. 

Figure 5.25 

The Track Editor 
window combines a 
list of tracks with a 
graphic display 
showing the pres- 
ence of MIDI data 
in the sequence. 
Shown here in its 
fully expanded 
form, it indicates 
patches by name 
and displays the 
automated volume 

The first column in the left half of the window lists the 64 tracks provided 
in Pro 5. Next to that are columns for selecting Play, Record, Solo, and 
Looping, respectively. Each of these categories uses one or more small icons 
to indicate the status of the selected functions. The Channel column lets 
you set the MIDI port and channel (or combination of channels) for each 
track’s playback, and the Program Number column displays the MIDI 
program number for the instrument sound in the corresponding synthe- 
sizer. Clicking on the heading of the Program Number column brings up 
the Device menu, listing several popular synthesizers and sound modules. 

Sequencing at the Top 


Selecting an instrument fills a window with the program names that corres- 
pond to that device. The Program Number column— now the Program 
Name column— lists the selected instrument sounds by name rather than 

The Voltune coliunn fists the voliune setting for each track either with a 
simple numerical display or optionally with a set of real-time volume faders 
that can display, adjust, record, and play back MIDI voliune settings for 
each track. Additionally, a pop-up, variable-mode Master Fader lets you 
control the other faders as a group. 

Pro 5 offers a Multi-Track Record option, which allows you to record on 
more than one track at a time, and a Multi-Channel option, which lets you 
record up to eight channels per track. You can also loop different tracks 
independently, but the loops must always end on a measure boundary. Like 
Vision and Performer, Pro 5 lets you place markers at important points 
throughout the sequence. The markers, which look and act like the tab 
stops in MacWrite, can appear in all of the editing windows just below the 
title bar. Similar markers are also available for placing Program Change 
commands in each track throughout the sequence. 

The right half of the Track Editor window shows the structure of the 
sequence by indicating the presence of MIDI data on a measure-by-measure 
basis. Here you can cut, copy, and paste sections of tracks, insert measures, 
and create new tracks from sections of other tracks. The display is very 
much like the Tracks Overview in Performer, which followed Master 
Tracks Pro in adopting this feature. 

To view and edit individual note data, you must open the Step Editor 
window (Figure 5.26). This is the same kind of graphic, piano-roll display 
that the other sequencers use. It doesn’t include continuous controller data, 
thoughj instead, it provides separate windows for this type of information. 

Pro 5 does, however, offer a very useful Show Velocity feature, which 
displays velocity values in the Step Editor window as thin vertical fines 
attached to the front of each note (Figure 5.27). Longer fines indicate 
greater velocities, and you can edit each value by clicking on the note 
and dragging up or down to change the fine’s length. 



Figure 5.26 
Pro 5*s Step Editor 
Window is a typical 
piano-roll display. 

Figure 5.27 

Pro 5*s Show 
Velocity feature 
displays velocity 
values as thin 
vertical lines that 
can easily be edited. 

In the upper-left corner of the window, just to the left of the menu bar, 
there’s an icon depicting two eighth notes. This lets you determine whether 
edits made to selected regions in the Step Editor window will affect only 
note data or will include continuous controller data as well— even though it 
may not be visible at the time. 

The top row of fields and icons in the menu bar apply to the entering of 
new notes onto the grid. To insen a note into a track, you first select the 

Sequencing at the Top 


Pencil tool and choose a note value from the menu bar. Then you simply 
choose the desired pitch and time location and click the mouse. Subsequent 
positioning and clicking will enter additional notes. By clicking the small 
keyboard icon, you activate step-time, note-entry mode— Pro 5’s version of 
step recording. Now you can selea the rhythmic values of the notes from 
the computer and enter the velocities and pitches from your MIDI key- 
board. Each time a note is entered the cursor advances to the next insenion 
point. Pro 5 recognizes and inserts chords in the same way. 

Articulation refers to the actual duration of a note— expressed as a 
percentage— as opposed to its indicated rhythmic value. For example, 
adjusting the articulation down from 100 percent will produce a more stac- 
cato passage than if the notes all received their full rhythmic values. 

Holding down the Conunand key turns the cursor into a hand with a point- 
ing finger, which sounds the notes on the grid as it passes over them. This 
is a good way to preview notes when inserting and editing them and can 
help you locate drum sounds while compiling rhythm tracks. The arrow 
icon in the menu bar is used for selecting regions for editing, and the eraser 
icon deletes notes when you click on them. The other items indicate the 
measure/beat location of the ctusor or selected note, the note name, the 
MIDI channel, the track number, and the patch name. A note remapping 
feature lets you select all notes of a specific pitch and move them over the 
grid to a new pitch location. 

Pro 5 also has a Keyboard Setup feature that lets you assign MIDI key- 
board equivalents to all of the transport controls and allows you to select 
note durations while working in the Step Editor window. 

Like the sequencers already mentioned. Pro 5 provides an Event List Edi- 
tor window (Figure 5.28), which displays track data in the traditional event- 
list format. Along the top of the window, several icons representing the 
different t 3 q)es of MIDI events allow easy and direct insertion of new data. 
To insert an event, simply click on the appropriate icon and t 3 rpe in the 
location. The icons represent note events, program changes, pitch bend, 
controller data, aftertouch, and pol3q3honic aftertouch. The Filter button 
lets you eliminate certain types of data from the display for easier viewing 
and to allow for better discrimination of events for editing. 



Figure 5.28 
Pro 5*s Event List, 
similar to the oth- 
ers, also includes a 
column for MIDI 

Euent List Editor 

1 Goto. 

IlFilterl Insert :fT)fP^(^r^fT]ful| T IPwno 




Chan 1 Data 

4 : 1:239 

1 i G4 M90 

i64i 0; 1:022 


4: 3:036 


1 i F4 i !70 

■'i6?i b; o:o24 


1 ■ ;’ F4 I !90“ 

TeTi "oT 0 ; 173 

^ . 


~ 1 f 'M i iso 

”i64T "q:-y:qi7 

4: 4:‘2'l9 

1 ! »7 i 1 1 2 

^ I 


1 i E4 i !80 

i64 : 0: 0: 146 

"5; I :'l27“ 

"\ " i A4 : !80‘ 

“"i64l b;‘ 6: 131 


5; 3: 116 

1 1 G4 i 180 

i64 : 0: 0; 140 

^ I 

5: 4:006 

"T‘1 F4l 190 

i64 i b : “b " l42 


■'7 ■'r"A4T’y9F 

'7647 di ' b : H6 


6: 1:021 

1 i G4 M70 

i64 ; 0:0; 153 

6': i;T28 

■ 1 f'R iriod 

' i64'i b:"b; 12'y 



1 i 34 

6: 2:013 

1 ^ E4 il 1 10 

i64 : 0: 0: 114 

“"6"“‘2; 123 

i i'o4Ty'i^' 

i64 0:"0:r59' 

6; 2:239 

1 ; C4 1 170 

i64 : 0:0: 159 


Since the Step Editor window includes only note and velocity data. Pro 5 
offers several additional MIDI Data windows to graphically display other types 
of events for editing. These windows are similar in appearance and layout to 
the Step Editor display except that they are optimized for the types of data that 
they contain. MIDI events appear as vertical lines (“skyline” mode) or as a 
series of points whose heights correspond to the numeric values. Data displays 
can be redrawn with the Pencil tool, and the eraser and arrow cursors work in 
a similar maimer to their Step Editor counterparts. 

The Channel Pressure, Key Pressure, Modulation, and Controller win- 
dows are all the same in appearance, with the vertical axis representing 
values from 0 to 127 and the horizontal axis indicating measures and beats 
(Figure 5.29). Changes made in one window do not influence the data in 
the others. 

The Pitch Bend window is similar to the others except that it represents 
both positive and negative values, ranging from - 127 to + 127. The center 
horizontal line represents a pitch bend value of zero. To better correlate 
controller data with note events, you can toggle on the Ghost Notes option, 
which superimposes a transparent view of the Step Editor’s notes over the 
controller event displays in the MIDI Data windows (Figure 5.30). The 
grayed-out notes act as a valuable guide when you create or edit the differ- 
ent kinds of controller data. 

Sequencing at the Top 


Figure 5.29 

The Modulation 
window is typical of 
several graphic 
displays that let you 
create and edit 
continuous con- 
troller data. 

Figure 5.30 

The Pitch Bend 
window displays 
both positive and 
negative values. It 
is shown here with 
the Ghost Notes 
option toggled on, 
which superim- 
poses note events 
over the continuous 
controller data. 

If you prefer an alternate method for editing velocity, you can open the 
Velocity window, which displays the same note and velocity data as 
the Step Editor but now in a dedicated window where the Pencil tool 
can be used to draw velocity curves. 

The Tempo Map window (Figure 5.31) displays the meter and tempo 
for a track. Horizontal lines graphically depict the changes in tempo as the 
sequence progresses. You can use the Pencil tool to insert new tempos on 
any clock or the Eraser tool to delete them. 



Figure 5.31 

Pro 5’s unique 
Tempo Map win- 
dow graphically 
depicts tempo 
changes and lets 
you edit them with 
the Pencil tool and 
the Eraser tool. 

Figure 5.32 

The Change Filter 
lets you set limits 
for several editing 

5 p Tempo Map 





Q IKHI 12:4:216 | 54 |Mtter = 4/4 | 


r 1 


1. ? . 




.13. 1 

_ 1_4 _ 



. 1.7. 

^ l( 





Master Tracks Pro 5 provides the same types of global editing capabilities 
as most other sequencers. Commands affecting duration, velocity, transposi- 
tion, quantizing, humanizing, and time scaling are found on the Change 
menu. In most cases, these are similar in implementation to the programs 
mentioned above. One interesting feature in Pro 5 is the Change Filter 
(Figure 5.32), which enables you to restrict the effects of the Change 
menu’s commands. This can be very useful in isolating specific types of 
data by making your global commands less global. 

Change Filter 

Only apply changes to euents UPith: 

0 Pitches from 




□ Durations from 




□ Ueiocities from 




I Channel 1 1 | 

0 nil measures OEuerylZ 



□ Start times mithin pro | clocks of these sub-beats: 

fcf^ [3^ 




" 3 ^ 


Sequencing at the Top 


For playing several sequences in succession. Pro 5 offers an option similar 
to Vision’s Queue feature. The Song Playlist window (Figure 5.33) lets you 
construct a list of sequences and determine parameters that affect playback. 
The Playlist itself is only a list and does not contain the actual sequence 
data, which is saved in separate files. 

Master Tracks Pro 5 has gained a well-deserved reputation for being an 
intuitive, uncomplicated program while still maintaining its status as a 
professional-level sequencer. Its graphic implementation of step-recording 
mode, velocity and continuous controller editing, and tempo mapping make 
this a very appealing program. 

Figure 5.33 

The Song Playlist 
window lets you 
construct a list of 
sequences that can 
be played back one 
after another. 

Song Playlist 

Between songs 
0 and before first song, 
wait for 

O Any Macintosh key 
(•) 1 seconds 


O Note 
O Controller ^ 


( Pause ] [ Slop ] 

|_PlayJ [ EHit I 

si Beyond 

Beyond, from Dr. T’s Music Software, occupies a unique position in the 
sequencer market. Priced well below the other high-end sequencers, yet 
above the less expensive programs, it straddles the fence between perfor- 
mance and cost. Beyond, however, offers extensive real-time editing capa- 
bilities, numerous graphic displays, and several distinctive features that 
clearly place it in the same league with the other pro-level sequencers and, 
in spite of a few shortcomings, it compares very well with the more expen- 
sive programs. 



When you first open Beyond, three windows appear for displaying and 
organizing MIDI data and for operating the sequencer itself. The Tracks 
window (Figure 5.34) looks and aas much like the comparable windows in 
other programs. Down the left side of the window, the 99 available tracks 
are numbered along with their assigned names. On either side of the Name 
column, check boxes allow you to enable recording, muting, soloing, and 
looping options. Clicking on an instrument name brings up a list of your 
available synthesizers for quick substitutions. 

Beyond also provides a graphic display of track activity much like the Track 
Overview windows in Performer and Master Tracks Pro 5, but this incarna- 
tion has a twist. The Multitrack page (Figure 5.35) displays MIDI note 
data in solid black and continuous controller data in gray. Subsequences and 
system-exclusive data can be included as well and everything can be cut, 
copied, pasted, and edited. 

Figure 5.34 

Beyond uses a 
standard format in 
its Tracks window, 
which lists the 
names for each 
track opposite the 
MIDI channels. 

ID i - = Sect l:Tracks lUindouj P1= 


RMS Name Loop Bars Instrument 





.V M ” 




Channel 2 M 





Channel 3 M 




Channel 4 M 




Channel 5 M |ili 




Channel 6 M 







. . . . 

Channel 2 P 



Channel 3 P -TV 

<>1 foa 

Figure 5.35 
Beyond’s unusual 
Multitrack page 
displays MIDI note 
data in black and 
continuous control- 
ler data in gray. 

Sect 1:Multitroclc 



1 ) Th«Song 

2) Piano 

3) Bass 

4) Drums 

5) Piano Vol, 

6) fill-ins 


Sequencing at the Top 


To view and edit individual note data in greater detail, you must open the 
Note Editor window (Figure 5.36). This is the standard piano-roll graphic 
display that most sequencers use, with a keyboard along the left side and 
measures along the top. The first three icons above the display are for 
selecting and editing. The arrow cursor selects all pitches in a given time 
frame. Clicking on a black measure marker selects that measure. You can 
selea a fraction of a measure or several measures by dragging through the 
desired area. The Pencil tool inserts and deletes notes, and the Forceps tool 
can be used to draw a selection box over a group of notes or to selea and 
move an individual note to a new pitch and/or location. Option-clicking on 
a note brings up a dialog box that lets you change parameters like measure, 
beat, clock location, velocity, duration, and channel. 

Figure 5.36 

The Note Editor 
window uses a 
typical piano-roll 

Another of Beyond’s useful display options allows you to graphically edit 
velocity data by including “velocity stems” on each note (Figure 5.37). These 
stems (similar to those in Master Tracks Pro 5) depia velocity values; the 
longer stems represent the higher numbers. Selecting the Edit Velocity Stem 
icon (to the right of the forceps) produces a small tool that can clip off a 
stem to lower the velocity of a note or grab and stretch a stem to increase the 
velocity. This is a great way to quickly edit the velocity data in a musical 
passage where great precision is not necessary. 



Figure 5.37 
Beyond offers the 
useful option of 
displaying note 
velocities with 
adjustable stems 
that indicate rela- 
tive values. 

For viewing pitch-bend data, Beyond offers yet another unusual display. By 
clicking on the Pitch Bend Enable button (above the binoculars), you can 
replace the velocity-stemmed notes with notes that graphically portray the 
presence of pitch bend. In this mode, any note that has pitch bend applied 
to it will appear with a curved nose or tail that shows both the direction and 
approximate amount of pitch bend (Figure 5.38). This is a handy way to 
easily correlate pitch-bend events with individual notes and to focus on 
specific locations that need further editing in the Continuous Data window. 

Figure 5.38 

Beyond offers 
another unique 
display option that 
graphically depicts 
the presence of 
pitch bend. 

Sequencing at the Top 


For graphically editing continuous controller events. Beyond provides a 
single window that can be switched from one data type to another by click- 
ing in a row of buttons. Along the top of the Continuous Data window 
(Figure 5.39), several icons provide access to displays for pitch bend, other 
controllers, average velocity, aftertouch, program change events, polyphonic 
aftertouch, and tempo. Opening each display automatically changes the 
scale markings to reflect that tjT^e of data. You can copy and paste the dis- 
play from one window into another to translate one kind of data into 
another kind. 

Figure 5.39 
The Continuous 
Data window lets 
you create and edit 
pitch bend, after- 
touch, modulation, 
and other kinds of 
MIDI data. 

As with most other sequencers, Beyond provides a list of MIDI events in 
its Display List window (Figure 5.40). This event list is not as fully imple- 
mented as those from the programs mentioned earlier. For instance, there is 
no provision for displaying markers or SMPTE timecode, and editing op- 
tions are limited. Still, this window does offer information in a basic list 
format, which is often useful for displaying and changing data. 

Beyond refers to sequences as Sections^ so the window that lists sequences is 
called the Sections window (Figure 5.41). This looks like the sequence win- 
dows in many other programs but most closely resembles the Chunks window 
in Performer in terms of how it works. Beyond lets you assemble compositions 
by dragging Sections from the Sections window into one of the graphic dis- 
plays used for editing tracks (Figure 5.42). Once dragged to this new location, 
the Section becomes a SubSection— a sort of independent clone of the original 



Figure 5.40 

Beyond’s Display 
List window is not 
as fully imple- 
mented as the event 
lists in other 

Figure 5.41 

Sequences in 
Beyond are listed 
in the Sections 

iDb Sections (Uindoui 


U ►Drums 

2) ►Verse 1 

3) ►Pi*r»o 

4) ►Bridge 

5) ►Bess Ffgire i ll 

6) ►Brass Section 

7) ►Vers# 2 

8) ►OuHar Soto A 

9) ►OuHar Soto B 

10) ►Guitar Soto C 

1 1) ►Voodirinds 

: -■Jiui'.-- S' 



The Subsections can be combined in a number of ways and subjected to a 
variety of editing functions. Alterations and edits made to a SubSection do 
not affect the Seaion and vice versa. You can have up to 16 different Sub- 
Seaions per track, but copies of a SubSection don’t count as being different 
since edits made to a SubSection are reflected in its copies. 

You can create new Sections by combining and editing SubSections. Hav- 
ing done that, you can convert all of the SubSections back into regular note 

Sequencing at the Top 


Figure 5.42 
Beyond lets you 
assemble complete 
compositions by 
dragging Sections 
into a graphic 
display where they 
can be combined 
and further edited. 

Note Editor I 

1 :01 :128 



Channel 1 

Proqram ; 0 





Note Value: 240 



Velocity : 100 

Track" 1 

|►Bridqeij◄| ; 


^ Gui< ar Solo a|; -jj 

► GuiUr Solo 

^ Brass Section: 

► Bass Figure I'lj 

y Sax'SectioniHlj^ig M 



data by using the Expand SubSections funaion, which places the expanded 
data in the next available track. Clearly the handling of sequences and the 
combining of sequence material into larger forms is uniquely implemented 
in Beyond. Similar options in other programs are more limited in terms of 
editing capabilities for these subgroupings and don’t allow you to graphi- 
cally display blocks of data alongside individual note events. 

The transport controls for Beyond appear in the Bridge display (Figure 5.43), 
which provides the usual control buttons for operating the sequencer. The 
Return button positions you back at the beginning of the sequence, while 
Fast Forward scans rapidly ahead. Beyond offers a feature that lets you 
specify and play back up to four distinct regions called Cues. You can play a 
Cue by seleaing its number from the buttons to the right of the Time dis- 
play and then clicking on the Cue transport button. Cues can also be 
looped for repeated playback. 

To the left of the transpon controls, the Meter and Tempo displays let you 
specify both of these parameters. The Tempo display is similar to the one 
in Performer except that you can move the tempo indicator in real time and 
record the tempo changes on any available track. 



Figure 5.43 

Beyond*s trans- 
port, metronome, 
and counter func- 
tions are grouped 
together in the 
Bridge display. 

i The DrUlge i 



Bar BmI Clock 

□ CpCue 





TMnpoai 120 

RETURN cm r.r. 


1 SCT i 





1 Internal Sync| 

1 Count 

: Off 1 

To the right of the transport controls, the Counter display gives the current 
location in measures, beats, and clocks as well as SMPTE time. You can 
begin recording or playback from any point in the sequence by clicking on 
the measure number and typing in the appropriate value. Unlike many 
other sequencers, however, this is the only variable allowed. You cannot 
enter a precise location in measures, beats, and clocks or by indicating an 
exact SMPTE time to position the start of the sequence. 

Beyond has a maximum resolution of 480 ppqn, but that number is vari- 
able, allowing you tu select from three other values: 192, 240, and 384 
ppqn. This helpful feature allows users with one of the slower Macs (i.e., 
Plus or SE) to optimize performance by reducing the processor work load. 
This should improve your timing accuracy and reduce wait time during 
operations, although the timing resolution itself will no longer be as high. 

The remaining buttons on the right of the Bridge are used for setting the 
MIDI Thru channel, the punch-in/out parameters, the metronome, the count- 
down parameters, and the timing source. Pop-up menus provide the options 
for easy seleaion. 

Recording in Beyond is pretty much as it is in other programs, with a few 
special options. Step recording takes place in the Note Editor window in a 
manner very similar to that in Master Tracks Pro 5. Note parameters are 
seleaed from the menu in the upper-right corner, and the Pencil tool places 
them in the grid. Clicking the keyboard icon at the top of the display allows 
you to enter notes from your MIDI keyboard. As each note is entered, the 
cursor jumps to the next entry point. 

Sequencing at the Top 


Beyond offers two types of loop-recording modes: Song Building mode and 
Multiple Take mode. In Song Building mode each recorded pass is placed 
on a separate track while the previous overdubs continue to play. This is a 
variant of drum-machine-style recording except that it places each overdub 
on the next available track and, therefore, allows you to mute or solo tracks 
at any time while you build up your sequence. Song Building mode is espe- 
cially well suited for creating drum patterns and other kinds of rhythmic 

Multiple Take mode is similar to Song Building mode in that each over- 
dub is placed on its own track. But now the tracks are muted after they are 
recorded so that you can perform a passage over and over imtil you get it 
right. You can also create a composite track by cutting and pasting the best 
parts from several takes. This mode is perfea for recording solos against a 
backgroimd since it allows you to record several passes without unnecessary 
interruptions and without losing any of the previous performances. 

Like the other sequencers discussed earlier, Beyond offers a niunber of 
graphic faders that can be assigned to record various t 5 q)es of continuous 
controller data. The Instruments window (Figure 5.44) provides 32 moving 
faders, although only 10 at a time can actually be seen— an imfortunate 
shortcoming. Each fader is assigned an instrument and controller number. 
There is also a box for including program change numbers while the 
sequencer is stopped or running. Faders can also be grouped and a Master 
Fader can be used to scale the settings of other faders. 

Beyond has all the same kinds of global commands that other sequencers 
use, such as quantizing (with adjustable strength), changing duration and 
velocity, “humanizing,” transposing, and time scaling. Additionally, there 
are two types of harmonizing options: Chromatic and “Intelligent” harmo- 
nizing. Chromatic harmonies consist of one to four parallel lines that main- 
tain a specified interval from the original melody, and Intelligent harmo- 
nies retain the key and scale relationship as the new lines are generated. 

Beyond is an unusual program in several ways. It is priced moderately but 
still provides a high level of performing and editing capability. It also boasts 
a number of distinctive feamres that set it apart from other sequencer 



Figure 5.44 
The Instruments 
window provides 
up to 32 graphic 
faders assignable to 
various types of 

fB Instruments I 

Chn 2 
Chn 3 










a 9 


Guitar Alto Sax Trombont Basf Drums 

Plano Trumpat Strings ^ Voodvinds Parc. 

All Notas 


designs. Whether these features will be of benefit to you largely depends on 
the t 5 tpe of composing you do and the methodology that you employ in 
constructing your sequences. Since any Section in Beyond can be a com- 
plete sequence containing up to 99 tracks, you can certainly compose in a 
linear fashion if you like. But many of the features in this program, and 
their specific implementations, suggest a strong bias toward the sectional or 
pattern-song approach to composing. Some people, especially those who 
compose in commercial and pop styles, may find this aspea of the program 

^ Cubase 

Cubase, from Steinberg/Jones, is a unique product. Based on the popular 
sequencer for the Atari, it provides more ways of creating and editing music 
than any other program mentioned so far. With its surprising array of 
graphic displays and MIDI-manipulating environments, it’s a button- 
pusher’s, knob-tweaker’s, fader-slider’s delight— once you figure out how it 
all works. Right from the start you’re confronted with a bewildering list of 

Sequencing at the Top 


terms describing the hierarchal structure used in Cubase: Arrangements, 
Tracks, Parts, Groups, Group Parts, Group Tracks, Songs, and more. For 
the beginner this may seem a bit daunting, but spending some time with 
the program should get you over the initial learning curve and open the 
door to some very intriguing featoes. 

The first window to appear when you start the program is the Arrange 
window (Figure 5,45). Cubase refers to sequences as Arrangements, and the 
Arrange window provides up to 64 tracks, which it displays along its left 
side. Several Arrange windows can be open at one time to facilitate cutting, 
copying, and pasting between displays. The Tracks list also provides col- 
umns for muting Tracks, seleaing MIDI channels and ports, and setting 
program numbers and volume at the start of the sequence. 

Figure 5.45 
Cubase displays a 
sequence in its 
Arrange window, 
which lists the 
Tracks on the left 
side and graphically 
represents Parts on 
the right. 

Just as Arrangements are made up of Tracks, Tracks are made up of Parts. 
At the simplest level. Parts resemble drum-machine “patterns” in that they 
are smaller sections of music that can be edited and combined to create 
tracks. But Parts, which can be any length, are much more than drumlike 
patterns since they can consist of a number of different types of data and 
can be extensively edited, lengthened, shortened, cut into pieces, and com- 
bined with other Parts. 

The right side of the Arrange window displa)^ Parts graphically as small 
reaangles with the Part’s name on each reaangle. When you make a 



recording, the data appears as a Part in the Part display opposite its corres- 
ponding Track. The Position Bar indicates the location in measures or 
SMPTE timecode. 

You can select Parts individually or in a group by dragging a selection box 
over them. A Part can be duplicated or deleted, and any Part that is moved 
to another Track adopts that Track’s MIDI channel and port setting. If you 
drag one Part onto another, a copy of the dragged Part will either merge 
with or replace the data in the other Part depending on the Record Mode 
setting. The Parts need not have equal lengths either. You can merge a 
small Part into the middle of a larger one if you like. 

An individual Part can be muted and its length can be changed by grabbing 
the rectangle and stretching or shortening it. The Scissors tool enables you 
to cut a Part in two, and the Scrubbing tool lets you hear the music in a 
Part by dragging over its rectangle. When Parts are joined, areas with over- 
lapping data will be merged without losing any events. 

Parts can also be combined into a Group— a coUeaion of Parts that play 
simultaneously and are treated as a separate entity. Since each of the compo- 
nent Parts retain their individual MIDI assignments. Groups appear in a 
separate Group Track, which is created at the top of the Parts display. 
Groups are treated as distinct blocks of music and as such are subject to a 
number of editing options imique to them. Groups can be useful for com- 
posing music with recurring elements or for assembling larger works from 
smaller seaions. 

Recording and playback operations in Cubase are initiated from the Trans- 
port Bar (Figure 5.46). Here you’ll find all the usual controls, like Play, 
Record, Fast Forward, Rewind, etc. To the right of these buttons, two 
small displays show the current location in measures/beats/ticks and 
SMPTE time. Cubase uses a timing resolution of 384 ppqn— not the high- 
est in this group but respectable nonetheless. You can store up to sbc Song 
Position settings for cueing important parts of the sequence from the Mac’s 
keyboard. The two adjacent displays show meter and tempo. 

The Click button toggles the metronome on and off. Master deactivates 
the existing tempo changes, and S}mc provides options for timing sources. 
On the far right, two rectangles marked In and Out indicate the presence 

Sequencing at the Top 


Figure 5.46 

Recording and 
playback operations 
are initiated from 
the Transport Bar. 

2l Solo llOverdubll 

1.1. OIMMIM .|||||||||||« 

18. 2. 180 I1 122. oil Click 


ii = ! ■ !l In llOotlf 

Left Locator 

1. 1. o||| m IlkMaiilllMMlII 

Song Position Tempo i 

o: o:M: 9|| 4/ 4 lr== 



Right Locator 



of MIDI data flow— sort of a poor man’s version of Performer’s MIDI 
Monitor— a feature that all sequencers should have for diagnosing prob- 
lems. On the left of the Transport Bar are several controls for soloing, 
cycling (looping), selecting recording modes (overdub and replace), and 
activating Punch In/Out recording. Cubase provides all of the standard 
recording methods along with Multi Recording, which lets you record up 
to four tracks simultaneously— fewer than most other programs of this 

You use the Left and Right Locator boxes to set the boundaries of a region 
for editing, looping, or automated punch in and out. The numbers from 
the Transport Bar are reflected in the Part display, along the top, much like 
tab markers in a word processor. You can also change their positions by 
dragging them to new locations. Cubase lets you store ten of these sets of 
location markers, which you can access by typing one of the number keys 
on the Macintosh keyboard. You can then call up often-used sections of 
your music instantly for playback, looping, or editing. 

For graphic editing of individual note events, Cubase provides a Key Edit 
window (Figure 5.47). This is the same piano-roll graphic display that by 
now you have come to know and love. You can drag and edit notes in the 
upper part of the display. The lower part— the Controller display— shows 
continuous controller data in a manner similar to the Strip Chart display in 
Vision. A button to the left of the display lets you select from several types 
of continuous controller data, such as pitch bend and aftertouch, as well as 
other kinds of non-note values like velocity and program numbers. 

Along the top in the Funaions Bar, you’ll find several boxes indicating the 
current cursor position, quantize setting, snap (cursor quantize) setting, and 
loop boundaries. The Speaker icon activates note monitoring, and the 
remaining buttons are used in step-entry recording, which can be done with 



Figure 5.47 

The Key Edit 
window displays 
notes graphically in 
the familiar piano- 
roll format and 
includes a lower 
section for continu- 
ous controller and 
other types of data. 

Notice the four 
selected notes in the 

the Pencil tool from the Tools menu or from a MIDI keyboard. Selecting 
the Paint Brush tool allows you to “paint” new notes onto the grid by drag- 
ging the brush around (Figure 5.48). Although the results are seldom very 
musical, it’s still fun to play with. One other unique feature in this window 
deserves mentioning; the Chord display. This box shows the current names 
of chords as you record them and again when you play them back— very 
useful for analyzing your music. 

Cubase’s version of the Event List display is the Grid Edit window (Fig- 
ure 5.49). This multipart window combines the listing of events with two 
types of graphic displa 3 rs. On the left you’ll find the typical chronological 
list of MIDI events along with the corresponding data. You can display the 
start position of each event in either measures or SMPTE timecode, and 
you can insert, delete, and edit notes in the same ways that most other pro- 
grams allow. Cubase, however, puts a unique twist on the old event-list 
format by including a graphic representation of the same data. 

The middle section of the Grid Edit window displays measures along the 
top— much like the Key Edit window— but now the vertical axis corres- 
ponds to the chronological position of the MIDI events displayed in the 
adjoining list. Notes and other events appear as white rectangles with dura- 
tion represented graphically. You can change the length of a note with the 

Sequencing at the Top 


Figure 5.48 
The Paint Brush 
tool allows you to 
“paint** new notes 
onto the grid. 

Figure 5.49 

Cubase*s unique 
Grid Edit window 
combines an event 
list with two addi- 
tional graphic 


GRID - Edit 

24. I. 0 - 



M*$k )| Ins Notes 

~j | 28. 3.H4l(Snap 16 





1 Val 1 

|VaI2 |val3 I 




3. 48 








3. 96 

i 96 







3. 144 








4. 0 








4. 48 








4. 96 








4. 144 








4. 144 








4. 144 








4. 184 


77 i 





1. 0 


72 ; 





!. 0 

48 1 






Pencil tool by dragging its rectangle into a longer or shorter shape. You can 
also move an event to another location in the list by dragging its rectangle 
to a new position. 

On the far right of the window, the Bargraph display represents note veloc- 
ities (and some other types of data) as a series of black horizontal bars. You 
can adjust velocity values quickly by dragging the bars to the left or right to 
lengthen or shorten them. Most of the same recording, editing, and play- 
back features found in the Key Edit window are available in the Grid Edit 



window as well. Global commands, looping, step-entry recording, qtiantiz- 
ing, note monitoring, etc., can ail be accomplished within this environment 
if you prefer. 

Cubase is the only program in this group, other than Performer, that 
offers a display in standard musical notation. The Score Edit window 
(Figure 5.50), however, goes one step beyond Performer by allowing you to 
display several staves at once. If you select a number of Parts to be edited in 
the Score Edit window, each Part will be assigned a staff although only one 
Part at a time will be active. You may have to scroll up or down to see all of 
the staves if you are editing many Parts, but the ability to compare the 
music on several lines is a very valuable feature. 

Figure 5.50 
The Score Edit 
window lets you 
view and edit your 
music using stan- 
dard notation. 

As in the other graphic displays, you can select notes singly or in groups 
and drag them to new locations or new pitches. Several options allow you 
to adjust the display to eliminate unnecessary ties, automatically select an 
appropriate clef, change key, or split parts into a bass and treble clef as in 
piano notation. This window also has the Chord display mentioned above, 
along with the same editing, looping, and step-recording functions shared 
by the other windows. 

If you have an insatiable appetite for graphic editing displa)rs, Cubase offers 
yet another way to record and edit music. The Dnom Edit window (Figure 
5.51) is designed specifically for creating and editing drum and percussion 
parts. The format makes it especially well suited to the requirements of 

Sequencing at the Top 


drum-machine-style recording while allowing you to refer to individual 
percussion sounds by name rather than MIDI note number. If you’re famil- 
iar with Upbeat (Dr. T’s Music Software), or you’ve used a Roland drum 
machine, this display should make you feel right at home. The left side of 
the display lists the different drum sounds in your drum machine or sound 
module, which you assign to the appropriate MIDI note numbers. In the 
other columns you set the quantization values, note lengths, and MIDI 
channels. These settings comprise the Drum Map, which can list up to 64 
drum and percussion sounds and their corresponding parameter values. 
Different drum maps can be saved for different sound modules and differ- 
ent compositions. 

Figure 5.51 
Cubase’s Drum 
Edit window lets 
you create and edit 
rhythm parts. 

The graphic display uses little diamond shapes to indicate the individual 
drum-sound events along a grid marked horizontally with measures. You 
enter notes by first selecting the Drumstick tool and then simply clicking 
where you want to add each drum sound. By selecting different Macintosh 
key combinations before clicking each note, you can set one of four user- 
defined velocity values represented by different patterns inside the dia- 
monds. Looping a 2-4 measure section allows you to build up rhythm 
patterns in a drum-machine-style, but more easily with the benefit of visual 
feedback. Recording can also be done from your MIDI keyboard and any 
results, from either method, are subject to the same graphic editing capabil- 
ities as in the other editing windows. In addition, a Controller display like 
the one in the Key Edit window provides non-note event editing. 




If you feel that five editing environments are not quite enough for your 
taste, Cubase offers still another way to affect your MIDI data. The Logical 
Edit display provides the opportunity to alter MIDI events in a variety of 
ways by selecting parameters from a large dialog box (Figure 5.52). This 
serves a function similar to the Change Filter display in Master Tracks Pro 5, 
but in a more elaborate and powerful, though much less intuitive, form. 
Logical Edit lets you set up Conditions and Operations or specify Results 
to make certain kinds of alterations, within certain ranges, to the designated 
kinds of events. In fact, other programs like Performer and Vision provide 
many of the same kinds of variable parameter settings for their global edit- 
ing commands, but Cubase has focused these operations into a single, 
though somewhat abstruse, display. 

Figure 5.52 

The Logical Edit 
display lets you 
alter MIDI events 
by assigning param- 
eters to achieve 
certain kinds of 

Since all of the other sequencers mentioned in this chapter provide a 
graphic display with faders or sliders, it’s no surprise that Cubase also 
offers this feature. But what is surprising is the variety and flexibility of 
controls that Cubase provides. Rather than predefining the number and 
style of faders, the MIDI Mixer window lets you create your own custom- 
ized control panel with faders, knobs, munerical displays, and switches 
(Figure 5.53). You then assign these “Objects” to control the kinds of 
MIDI data that you want. 

Sequencing at the Top 


Figure 5.53 
Cubase’s MIDI 
Mixer window lets 
you create your 
own control panels 
by grouping various 
“Objects” and 
assigning them to 
different kinds of 
MIDI data. 

With the MIDI Mixer you can create mixing consoles, switch boxes, or 
“virtual” front-end panels for your sound modules. You can group controls 
in a variety of ways and record their actions into a Part. Any configuration 
with up to 128 objects can be easily assembled by creating, moving, and 
sizing the graphic controls. 

Most of the sequencers in this group offer an option that enables you to 
generate new music from old. In its most basic form, this can be simply a 
funaion that takes a melody and inverts or reverses it. More advanced 
applications, like the one in Vision, separate the components of the music 
and algorithmically recombine them. Not to be outdone, Cubase introduces 
yet another window, which it calls the Interactive Phrase Synthesizer (Fig- 
ure 5.54). This music-generating feature models itself after a synthesizer 
that creates music, not sounds, in real time. 

The IPS uses three modules— Phrase Input, MIDI Input, and Interpreter— 
to modify a recorded section of music. The phrase is a copy of the original 
recorded material— the basic building blocks. By playing from your MIDI 
keyboard, the MIDI Input module interacts with this data in a way deter- 
mined by the Interpreter module. The new music output from the Inter- 
preter gets further split into its three components— Rhythm, Pitch, and 



Figure 5.54 

The Interactive 
Phrase Synthesizer 
combines real-time 
MIDI input with 
prerecorded mate- 
rial to create 
generated new 

Figure 5.55 
Cubase provides 
the MIDI equiva- 
lent of an audio 
signal processor in 
its MIDI Processor 


Interactiue Phrase Synthesizer 


jgiJ [_L_ 
NotM Numbers 




MIDI lnp»< 

Sort I Highest Not# I 

imnai i c-2 i to i ea i 

Modulator I 1 


fwi l 

' UFO I 




• Correct to scale in key 

LFO Freq 1 S3 

HHinjim iLO 

Dens [TTT] Trans 

1— 1 Rhuthm 1 


nini Off II Off 1 

r LFO Freq 1 

Comp% Len 0 

Dest I Midi- Out- Channel || 0~~| 

Functions | 

I itctiuo I I Init I 



Pro l No I Chan I 2 I 

r mw 

I luamplol I 

Thru Program I No j 

Modulator 2 1 

Dest 1 Midi-Out 

-Channel | 

II f 1 

1 Off in 1 

LFO Ftm 1 tool 

1 AmolfnioSl 

1 Min 


0. 0 I 

I n- 0 I 

Dynamics— represented by individual on-screen modules. The output from 
these modules is then summed together and sent to the Output module. 
The ability to interact with recorded data in real time to make algorithmic- 
ally generated new music offers great potential for creating a variety of 
useful musical ideas that can be recorded or performed live. 

If you like, you can also use the MIDI Processor (Figure 5.55), Cubase’s 
MIDI equivalent of an audio signal processor, to produce MIDI echo, cho- 
rus, pitch shifting, and other effects. Of course, Cubase also offers several 
quantizing options, as well as a MIDI-keyboard remote-control feature. 

MIDI Effect Processor I 












1 (J 




















1 i 

1 W 




Repeat Echo Quantize Vel D«c Echo [>*c Note Deo 

p Input 


1 j ' 1 

1 Flute 


1 1 Input 

1 Modem 



1 ' 


Sequencing at the Top 


Cubase is an exceptional program. The developers have thrown in every- 
thing but the kitchen sink to provide the most comprehensive sequencer 
possible. The number of options and editing displays is very impressive, 
and the heavy emphasis on graphics and modular composing techniques 
will appeal to many users. The trade-offis that often you’ll be confronted 
with unfamiliar terms and a hierarchal structure that can be confusing to 
work within. Still, if you like ijianipulating MIDI data, this program 
should keep you busy for a very long time. 

All of the sequencers in this chapter are intended for people who demand 
the highest levels of power and control for working with MIDI composi- 
tions. Although competition has caused them to acquire many of the same 
kinds of features, there are still very clear differences in the look and feel of 
the programs, as well as differences in their overall architectures. 

The appearance of the program on the screen is more than just cosmetics 
—it is the environment that you must work within on a regular basis. Per- 
former has an exceptionally nice, well-designed appearance that makes 
using it feel natural and intuitive. Vision supports color and allows you to 
assign different colors to different kinds of information. This can be ex- 
tremely helpful in keeping yourself organized and dealing with the many 
kinds of data that you will be using. Beyond uses color for some of its win- 
dows and monochrome for others. Whether or not you have a color sys- 
tem, you should always consider the clarity and design of a program as 
one important criterion for selection. 

User friendliness also varies from one sequencer to another. Performer and 
Vision provide online help— a feature that many will appreciate— while 
Master Tracks Pro 5 tries to keep the program itself as simple as possible. 
The documentation in this group is generally very good, with Performer 
and Vision topping the list for thoroughness and usability. Pro 5’s manual 
is concise and well structured. Beyond’s is also concise but lacks the same 
level of clarity, while Cubase’s is very thorough but occasionally a bit 



If you’re using one of the slower Macintoshes (Plus or SE), you might con- 
sider the size and processing demands of the programs. Master Tracks Pro 5 
and Beyond may work more smoothly and cause fewer delays than some 
of the other sequencers, depending on your specific configuration. 

Finally, you should consider the structure of the program. All of the 
sequencers in this chapter allow you to create a piece of music as one long 
continuous work. All of the programs also offer ways of combining sections 
of music into larger forms, but there are definitely differences in the empha- 
sis placed on these two styles of writing. It’s important to consider your com- 
positional needs and the flexibility of the software to avoid being forced 
into a writing or editing approach that does not ideally suit you. 


Prog Change 




Pitch Bend 


sattn vncc 


-» - 






— I*~{ 

rr i 1 

. rr 


■■ W" 

— ~i 

Sequencing on 
Easy Street 

11 the sequencers described in Chapter 5 are powerful, complex, and rather 
expensive. While professional composers will run these programs through 
their paces, many other users only need something to meet more modest 
demands. If your interest lies in playing MIDI files along with presenta- 
tions and your editing requirements are not extensive, or if you’re a relative 
newcomer to MIDI and you want a program that’s not too daunting and 
not too expensive, then one of the sequencers in this chapter should be just 
the ticket. 

m EZ Vision 

EZ Vision is Opcode’s scaled-down, budget-priced version of its popular 
high-end sequencer. Although many of Vision’s more sophisticated features 
are missing in EZ Vision, this program offers some unique options and 
surprises of its own and the result is a highly intuitive, well-designed 
sequencer that will satisfy the needs of a great many users. 

EZ Vision shares many qualities with its bigger brother, such as a respect- 
able 480-ppqn note resolution and the ability to estabUsh a communication 
link with Galaxy, Opcode’s universal editor/librarian (covered in Chap- 
ter 9). By creating this link you can transfer patch names directly from 
Galaxy to EZ Vision, where they will appear in pop-up windows for you to 
select. If you’re concerned about your future sequencing needs. Opcode 
provides an upgrade path to Vision, which directly imports EZ Vision files. 



To simplify this sequencer, several choices had to be made concerning 
where to trim the program. As a result, several features present in Vision 
are absent here. EZ Vision, for example, does not support SMPTE time- 
code and also doesn’t show elapsed time in its counter display. You can only 
record on one track at a time in EZ Vision since there is no MultiRecord 
provision allowing input from several channels into several tracks simulta- 
neously. The graphic editing display has been simplified, and there is no 
event-list editing capability. 

Both Vision and EZ Vision share the same quantizing categories— note 
quantize, cursor quantize, and playback quantize— but EZ Vision lacks the 
additional note-quantizing options, such as Strength and Sensitivity, that 
Vision offers. 

Each sequence in EZ Vision can have up to 16 tracks, which are assigned as 
a default to the 16 MIDI channels. If you like, you can change the assign- 
ments by selecting from any of the 16 channels on either the modem or 
printer port. You can create and save up to 25 sequences in EZ Vision, 
which, as in Vision, can be played by typing the designated letter from the 
Macintosh keyboard. 

Notes and other MIDI events are displayed and edited in a large inte- 
grated window that also incorporates the transport controls and counter. 
The Edit window (Figure 6.1) shares a number of features with Vision, 
including the Strip Chart, which allows you to edit note velocity, duration, 
and several other kinds of MIDI events. EZ Vision also offers the same 
recording options— Overdub, Replace, and Loop— that are found in Vision, 
and similar step-recording and note-inserting features are available as well. 

Along the left side of the window, you’ll find a column listing the tracks by 
number and color. EZ Vision offers one of the best color implementations 
of any sequencer on the market. Each track can be assigned a color, and the 
note events displayed in the Edit window appear in the appropriate color 
for each track. Down below, the Strip Chart also shows its data in the cor- 
responding color. 

This use of color is, itself, a useful feature for reducing confusion when 
viewing track data, but it becomes even more extraordinary when combined 
with another powerful feature: multiple-track display. EZ Vision lets you 

Sequencing on Easy Street 


Figure 6.1 

EZ Vision’s Edit 
window combines a 
piano-roll display 
with the same kind 
of Strip Chart that 
Vision uses. 

view and edit any or all of a sequence’s 16 tracks simultaneously, with each 
track’s data designated by a different color. Watching a sequence scroll by 
with the different instrument sounds appearing in different colors is quite a 
treat, as well as an invaluable tool for analyzing music and diagnosing com- 
positional problems. This is one feature that every sequencer should have. 

Once you have recorded your data onto a track, EZ Vision provides a good 
assortment of editing options. You can select notes with the Marquee tool 
by dragging over a region of limited pitch and time, whereas the I-beam 
tool selects all pitches in a region limited only by time. At the top of the 
window, the status bar changes to display information that is appropriate 
to the editing task being performed. 

Inserting notes in EZ Vision is a breeze. Aside from the usual note- 
inserting procedures, there is an option that lets you “paint” a note in by 
clicking where you want it and dragging the cursor to establish its 
duration— very fast and intuitive. EZ Vision also provides an Audible Feed- 
back option, which lets you hear each note as it’s selected, and two excel- 
lent Scrubbing features for listening to the whole track (or group of tracks) 
out of tempo. The Shuttle button (in the transport controls) lets you scan 
with variable speeds through your music. This works well even at 



extremely slow speeds. If you prefer, you can press the Command key 
to turn the cursor into a speaker icon that allows you to scrub manually 
with the mouse. 

EZ Vision’s Strip Chart resembles the one in Vision and displays the same 
kinds of non-note MIDI events. Selecting the Pencil tool makes editing this 
data quick and easy by simply drawing a line where you want the new 
values. Seven Edit Tools and five Edit Curves allow you to modify note 
properties in a variety of ways, such as determining minimum or maximum 
amounts and applying a variety of shapes or curves to the data display. 
Tempo changes can also be displayed and edited in the Strip Chart, and the 
Tap Tempo feature lets you set the sequence tempo by tapping on the 
Quote key at least three times. 

In EZ Vision you can string together several sequences into a “Song” by 
employing a window that resembles a simplified version of the Chunks 
display in Performer. The Arrangement window (Figure 6.2) provides a 
large field on which you can display and organize your sequences and 
includes its own set of transport controls. It uses graphic representations 
called blocks to symbolize the different sequences. To enter a sequence you 
can type its letter or select it from a pop-up menu. The sequence block then 
appears in the Arrangement window with its name and letter. Sequences 
can only play serially and cannot overlap or play simultaneously. They can, 
however, be cut, copied, dragged, lengthened, shortened, and rearranged 
within the window. 

Figure 6.2 

With the Arrange- 
ment window, EZ 
Vision lets you 
string together 
several sequences 
into a Song. 

Sequencing on Easy Street 


To allow you to adjust the volume and the pan settings (stereo positioning) 
of the individual instruments in your sequences, EZ Vision provides a 
Mixer window (Figure 6.3). Unlike the mixers in the pro-level programs, 
these faders control only volume (or velocity) data, which can be further 
edited in the Strip Chart display. Above each volume fader, a Pan controller 
produces a pop-up display that lets you adjust the stereo position of each 
track. Above that, an activity indicator shows the presence of MIDI infor- 
mation on each track much like the MIDI Monitor in Performer. Faders 
can also be grouped, and individual tracks can be soloed or muted. 

Figure 6.3 

The Mixer win- 
dow allows you to 
adjust the volume 
ind pan position of 
each track. 

ilQiiiiHIliiiiliiilliiiiliiiiililill MiKer jiiljiiiiiiiiiiiliiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiaiii 

Opcode Systems has managed to strike a very good balance between sim- 
plicity and power in its design of EZ Vision. Most operations are logical 
and straightforward, and the addition of color, as a functional feature, pro- 
vides an extra bonus. Some users may be concerned about the 16-track limit 
for sequences and the inability to assign multiple channels to a single track, 
but for many people these limitations should not pose a serious problem. 
With its 480-ppqn note resolution and online help, EZ Vision deserves 
serious consideration as an entry-level sequencer. 

Bl Trax 

Although Trax is the least expensive sequencer in this group, it still retains 
many of the features that characterize its parent program. Master Tracks 



Pro 5. Passport has taken the structure and layout of its popular pro-level 
sequencer and trimmed away several features to provide a product with the 
same straightforward design but at a fraction of the cost. 

Like Pro 5, Trax boasts a generous 64 tracks per sequence along with the 
same 240-ppqn note resolution. The Track Sheet in Trax (Figure 6.4) cor- 
responds to the left side of the Track Editor window in Master Tracks 
Pro 5. A quick comparison of the two reveals the same columns for Record 
and Playback functions, device and patch names, MIDI channel assign- 
ments, and graphic volume faders. Although the two windows differ 
slightly in appearance, the essential functions are the same. 

The right half of Pro 5’s Track Editor (which shows sequence data in mea- 
sure units) has become the Song Editor window in Trax (Figure 6.5). These 
two displays, which look nearly identical, provide the same kinds of Cut, 
Copy, Paste, and regional editing capabilities. 

Figure 6.4 

Trax provides a 
dearly designed 
Track Sheet listing 
instrument names 
and channel assign- 
ments along with 
graphic faders for 
volume adjustments. 



Track Sheet M 

Tk Play Rec Solo Name 


Chan Loop - Volume 



!► i 

!• i 


iMI Solo Sax 

1 1 







! Proteus Latin Drums 






i ► 


iProt/2 Arco Violins 

3 I 

— ®=— 




|mT 32 Flute 1 

A \ 




iProt/2 Oboe 

5 : 






}mT 32 Clarinet 2 

■ — ■ d 


1 ► i 


|Prot/2 Bassoon 





; j 


|M1 Soft Horns 




i ► 

: i 


iProteus SoloTrumpet 


(M — 




!Prot/2 Timpani 





The Step Editor window in Trax (Figure 6.6) is almost an exact clone, in 
both appearance and function, of Pro 5’s display of the same name. The 
one noticeable omission from Trax’s window, the note icon in the upper- 
left corner, reveals one of the biggest differences between these two prod- 
ucts: Trax does not display or provide for the editing of continuous con- 
troller data. As a result, the various MIDI Data windows in Pro 5 are 
missing in Trax. Passport has also eliminated the Event List window from 
its less expensive program. In spite of having fewer displays, Trax still pro- 
vides most of the global editing commands and quantizing options (except 
Humanize and Time Scaling) that its high-end counterpart offers. 

Sequencing on Easy Street 


Figure 6.5 

The Song Editor 
window displays 
the presence of 
MIDI data in 
measure units. 


Song Editor 




. 16 . . 20 

24 28 












Figure 6.6 
The Step Editor 
window in Trax is 
nearly identical to 
the same display in 
Master Tracks 
Pro 5. 

Not surprisingly, the Transport window in Trax (Figure 6.7) matches very 
closely its equivalent in Pro 5. Although the counter display shows elapsed 
time below the measure indicator, Trax does not recognize SMPTE time- 
code. On the right side of the Transport window, the absence of a Record 
Mode button points out that Trax also does not provide the same recording 
options that are found in Pro 5, such as Overdub, Loop Recording, and 
Multi-Track Recording. Trax also lacks a Song Playlist feature that lets you 
string sequences together and doesn’t provide a MIDI-keyboard remote- 
control option. Both programs do share the same kind of tempo window for 
displaying and changing meter and tempo. 

For a more detailed exploration of the things that Trax can do and how it 
does them, you should read the relevant descriptions of the Master Tracks 
Pro 5 features in Chapter 5. The general operating procedures and the look 



Figure 6.7 
The Transport 
window in Trax is 
very similar to its 
equivalent in Pro 5. 

Transport tUindom mmsBasaSS^BM 

M»«5ur* Clock 

l: 1:000 


Ktg Thru 

Ml ° 

Current Tim* 
0:00 :00:00 

1 Click 1 

Auto 1 INT 

1 Sync 

and feel of the two sequencers are remarkably similar considering that Trax 
costs less than a third as much as Pro 5. 

With Trax, Passport Designs has successfully brought quality sequencing 
to the masses by combining many of the features from its high-end 
sequencer into a package that is very easy to use and cost-effective. Many 
people will be concerned about the lack of overdub and loop-recording 
options as well as the conspicuous absence of continuous controller editing, 
but for most beginners and those with modest needs, Trax should serve 
quite well. Pro 5 and Trax sequences use the same format, so they can read 
each other’s files, and Passport Designs offers an upgrade path for Trax 
users who find they need the features of Pro 5. 

91 Ballade 

Ballade, from Dynaware, is a fascinating product that approaches sequenc- 
ing from a slightly different angle than most programs. It is also a product 
filled with apparent contradictions. Although it’s a moderately inexpensive 
program, clearly targeted at beginning users, it requires a substantial 1.5 
megabytes of memory for the application and its files. Additionally, it 
records with a surprisingly meager 48-ppqn note resolution (to avoid slow- 
ing its data processing), yet supports several formats of SMPTE timecode— 
most unusual for this type of product. Apple’s MIDI Manager, which must 
be used with Ballade, is included with the program. 

If you want to use Ballade, you must be able to read standard musical nota- 
tion since the only display for editing note data (except for the rhythm 
track) uses this system. Some people will find this appealing, but as I’ve 
pointed out earlier, standard notation has its drawbacks. For one thing, it’s 
hard to see more than two or three measures at a time, and for another 

Sequencing on Easy Street 


thing, musical notes don’t accurately reflect the subtleties of a performance. 
Ballade makes the most of these limitations by providing ways to slightly 
adjust the playback performance and by allowing you to print one or more 
tracks of your music. 

The main editing display, the Score Editor window (Figure 6.8), requires 
most of the screen to be fully useful. But, to enter note data, you’ll also 
need at least three or four additional palettes or displays. This creates an 
instant on-screen clutter that often requires shuffling windows to see all 
parts of the main display. 

Figure 6.8 

Ballade’s Score 
Editor window uses 
standard musical 
notation along with 
several horizontal 
fields for other 
types of MIDI data. 


1 Score Edit : Track 1 : Unnamed 


«/ 73 » 


1 1 t 1 1 1 1 

002 [ 
1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 iTmI I 




Prog Change 






Track Uol. 



Pitch Bend * 


LOC ; 002 : 1 : 00 


To enter notes on the staff. Ballade offers three step-recording approaches: 
You can enter notes from your MIDI keyboard, you can insert notes using 
the mouse, or you can select notes using the “Virtual Keyboard.” In any 
case, you first selea a note value from the Note Palette. Playing notes from 
your MIDI controller or the on-screen keyboard places the notes on the 
staff in succession as the rests disappear to accommodate the entries. You 
can also enter chords in this way. 



If you enter a wrong note with the mouse, you can undo the entry, but if 
you enter a wrong note from the MIDI keyboard, you must choose another 
cursor and select the note before you can clear or cut it— not very conducive 
to rapid step-entry. The Eraser tool is faster, but only a little. 

The Transport display that appears with the Score Editor provides buttons 
for Play, Stop, Record, Step Entry, and Auto Scroll. Noticeably absent, 
however, is a Rewind button to quickly return you to the start of the track. 
This must be done by scrolling with the scroll bar at the bottom of the 
window or by setting the Auto-Retum feature. Similarly, to view the other 
tracks in the sequence— there can be as many as 16— you must use the verti- 
cal scroll bar to skip from track to track. Only one track can be active at 
a time. 

Selecting the magnifying-glass icon and clicking on a note produces a pop- 
up window that lets you change certain note parameters. You can also shift 
the attack of the note forward or backward, in a limited way, to keep the 
music from becoming too mechanical sounding. 

Above and below the staff, several horizontal fields display markers, tempo 
and volume changes, modulation and pitch-bend events, and program 

To control the different instrument sounds in your sequence, Ballade pro- 
vides an impressively realistic, fiill-color mixing console. The Mixer win- 
dow (Figure 6.9) has faders for each of the 16 possible tracks in a sequence, 
which are assigned to the MIDI channels with the same numbers. In spite 
of its many limitations, this window is a lot of fun to watch, with its puls- 
ing, two-color, VU-style meters, its flashing indicators, and its readouts that 
mimic the appearance of LCD displays. Clicking on the panel’s buttons 
changes their color, and the faders move during playback to reflect the vol- 
ume settings on each track. 

In the upper-right comer a measure indicator shows the current sequence 
location, but only by measure number, not by measure, beat, and unit as in 
all other sequencers. You are left to deduce the current beat within the mea- 
sure by studying a line of flashing triangles beneath the numerical display. 
This may be entertaining to watch but not very practical for serious editing. 

Sequencing on Easy Street 


Figure 6.9 

Ballade’s colorful 
Mixer window 
provides faders for 
16 MIDI channels 
along with pulsing 
meters and numeric 
displays that mimic 
LCD readouts. 

The small windows for SMPTE time, Tempo, and Transpose are more 
useful, and the Master Volume fader is handy for adjusting the overall 

Ballade, in its current incarnation, is optimized for use with Roland sound 
modules (MT-32, CM-32L, CM-64, and SC-55)— a fact only obliquely 
mentioned in the documentation. This becomes apparent when viewing the 
default settings in the Mixer window. The rhythm track has been assigned 
to channel 10, there is no Reverb button for track 1, and the program num- 
bers refer to Roland default settings. Furthermore, the Reverb button above 
each slider sends system-exclusive messages that are only readable by 
Roland modules. If you are using another brand of hardware, you can 
create your own list of patch names and assign the program numbers to the 
appropriate tracks. You can also move the rhythm track to another location. 

When you enter the Mixer window, you are provided with a Transport 
Palette that differs from the one in the Score Editor. This display supplies 
the missing Rewind button along with a Fast Forward control to help you 
maneuver through the sequence. To record in real time, you click on the 
desired Track button in the Mixer and press the Record button in the 
Transport Palette. Ballade provides options for Loop, Overdub, Normal, 
and Punch-in recording, as well as a multi-record mode for entering data 



into several tracks at once. There are also limited quantizing and time- 
scaling options and a Chain Play feature that lets you define a list of 
sequences to play back jukebox-style in a specified order. 

To step-record drum parts. Ballade provides a Rhythm Track editor (Fig- 
ure 6.10). This allows you to build drum tracks by selecting “sound S 3 mi- 
bols” from the Rh 3 n:hm Palette and placing them on a grid. These diamond 
shapes determine the loudness of the notes by depicting higher velocities 
with larger diamonds. The editing commands from the Score Editor are 
available here as well. 

Figure 6.10 
Ballade’s Rhythm 
Track editor lets 
you build drum 
tracks by placing 
small diamonds 
on a grid. 

Rhythm : Track 1 0 : Rhuthm 


Master Uol. 

Rcoustic Bass 
Rin Shot 
Rcous . Snare 
Hand Clop 
Elec. Snare 
Rcous. Low Tom 
Closed Hi Hat 
Rcous. Low Tom 
Open Hi Hat 
Rcous. Hid Tom 
Open Hi Hat 
ij;,;; Rcous.Hid Tom 
HI Rcous. Hi Tom 
Crash Cgmbal 

S. i 



r 1 

f ■ -i 



i ■ < 


f — 


!.... j 

\ ▲ 



: ▼ 






▲ , 


I 2-> Iti jg ■■ 




? — 1 



r * 



▼ 1 


K ♦ -f 

Track Uol. 


Ballade lets you print your scores (using the Sonata font) with a number 
of options. You can selea the whole score or specify one or more tracks. A 
Score Preview feature lets you see (but not alter) the layout of the page 
before you print. 

It’s hard to summarize Ballade— a program with some high-end features, 
like SMPTE timecode recognition, time scaling, and MIDI-keyboard 
remote control, but lacking in several other areas. Its 48-ppqn note resolu- 
tion does not meet current sequencer standards, although it can read Stan- 
dard MIDI Files from other programs with higher resolutions and retain 
those resolutions during playback. Step recording and editing are often 

Sequencing on Easy Street 


cumbersome, the displays, although nice to look at, are sometimes 
awkwardly implemented, and the program lacks a consistently true 
Macintosh feel. 

If you prefer working with standard musical notation but are not inclined 
to invest in a pro-level sequencer, you may find Ballade a viable alternative. 
If your primary interest lies in playing back Standard MIDI Files, espe- 
cially in conjunction with a video presentation or an audiotape recording, 
the SMPTE timecode capability may be a significant plus. If your system 
includes a color monitor and one or two Roland sound modules, so much 
the better. In any case, the Mbcer window is always fun to watch and 
fiddle with. 

I DeluxeRecorder 

DeluxeRecorder, from Electronic Ans, provides a commendable assortment 
of MIDI data displays while still keeping the overall structure of the pro- 
gram appropriately simple for an inexpensive sequencer. Its two primary 
windows manage to handle the tasks of setting up, recording, and editing 
data with enough flexibility to accommodate most circiunstances. It also 
offers its own unique approach to performing various operations and 
combines that with several features not commonly found in other similar 

DeluxeRecorder’s Console window (Figure 6.1 1) consists of two compo- 
nents: the Control Panel, with its familiar transport-style buttons and indi- 
cators, and the Track List, which displays the 16 available tracks per 
sequence along with their related settings. The Channel column lets you 
assign any MIDI channel from either port to any track and, if you like, list 
tracks, devices, and instrument soimds by name. Clicking on an entry in 
the Volume, Pan, or Transpose column pops up a thermometer-style indica- 
tor that you can set quickly and easily by dragging with the mouse. Deluxe- 
Recorder also provides a Split Channel command, which allows multi- 
channel recording by separating incoming data into separate tracks. 

On the right side of the Control Panel, a counter display shows the current 
location in measures, beats, and ticks with a resolution of 480 ppqn. By 



Figure 6.11 

Console window 
combines the Con- 
trol Panel with the 
Track List. 

RfcPhij i 



!Progr*fn I 

o ► 



AcouPlano 1(1) 


o ► 


m2: MT-32 

Elec Bass 1 (2) 


o ► 


m3: MT-32 

Flute 1 Ml 


o ► 


m4: MT-32 

Sax 3 (21 


o ► 


m5: MT-32 

Brass Set 2 (31 



o ► 


m6: MT-32 

Trombone 1 (31 


o ► 


m7: MT-32 

Xylophone (1] 


o ► 


mB: MT-32 

Str Sect 1 (41 

o ► 


m9: MT-32 

Guitar 1 (21 


o ► 


mlO: MT-32 Rhythm 


o ► 


mil: MT-32 

Vibe 1 (31 


o ► ^ 


>ml2: MT-32 

Fr Horn 1 (31 

clicking in the window, you can change the display to indicate elapsed 
time. The CountOff button allows you to set any number of beats as a 
lead-in for recording. Below that, four additional buttons activate the loop- 
ing, auto punch-in, metronome, and MIDI timing-source functions. 

Next to the transport controls, a tempo indicator lets you set the initial 
tempo for the sequence by entering a specific value or by tapping on the 
mouse or spacebar to determine the tempo. In the lower-left corner, two 
indicators show available memoiy', the presence of MIDI input data, and 
the MIDI Thru channel. 

The transport controls, themselves, are similar to those in other programs 
except that you can click and drag on the Fast Forward button to speed up 
or slow down the playback as much as you want until you release the but- 
ton and automatically return to the initial tempo setting. You may be sur- 
prised to discover that the Control Panel doesn’t include a Record button. 
That’s because DeluxeRecorder approaches the recording process in a 
unique way. 

To record music from your MIDI keyboard, you simply click the Play but- 
ton in the Control Panel and begin your performance. The program does 
not immediately place the data in a selected track but rather stores the con- 
tents of the recording in a buffer. When you click Stop, the Reel icon 

Sequencing on Easy Street 


flashes, indicating the presence of data in the buffer. Then the Post Record 
dialog box appears, asking what you would like to do with the recording 
(Figure 6.12). Clicking Play without assigning the data to a track replaces 
the contents of the buffer with the new recording. This way you can try a 
passage of music several times until you get something you like and then 
decide where to place it. 

Figure 6.12 

The Post Record 
dialog box lets you 
decide where to put 
each recording. 


There is music in the Recording Buffer. ^ 
Ulhat do you mant to do luith it? ^ 

<i) Merge Into 
O Replace 
OThrouj It fluiay 

f( OK )] [ Cancel 


If you find the dialog box bothersome, you can simply drag the flashing 
Reel icon to the track where you want the recording placed. If you prefer a 
more traditional approach, you can also click one of the Record buttons in 
the Track List to record directly onto that track. Once you make a record- 
ing, a scrolling Cue Bar, similar to the Position Bar in Performer, shows 
your progress through the sequence during playback. 

Double-clicking on a track name in the Track List opens DeluxeRe- 
corder’s Edit window (Figure 6.13). This display can contain as many 
as 1 1 ‘‘staves” to depict graphically the MIDI data in each track. The note 
events, themselves, appear on a Grand Staff— the kind used for piano 
music— only this display does not use standard notation. The Edit window 
employs a very effective hybrid system of notation that combines the best 
features of piano-roll displays and standard musical notation. The notes are 
depicted as black bars, with duration represented by length rather than 
stems, flags, and beams. The black-key notes appear as bars preceded by 
sharps or flats, and ledger lines extend the note range outside the staff area. 
This system works well under most circumstances and offers a notational 
method that allows precise adjustments of notes while still maintaining a 



visual familiarity for those used to working with printed music. If you pre- 
fer, you can have the notes appear on a Chromatic staff, which more 
closely resembles the standard piano-roll display. 

The tear-off Tools menu provides several cursor options that allow you to 
select notes in various ways, to change their positions, durations, and veloc- 
ities, and to add new notes and accidentals. Of course, the usual Cut, Copy, 
and Paste commands are available as well, but DeluxeRecorder also offers 
another option that is both interesting and unique. The Scale Paste com- 
mand lets you copy a selected area of notes and then specify an area of any 
length (larger or smaller) into which you want the selection pasted. For 
instance, you could past a two-measure phrase into an area four measures 
long, thereby doubling the note values as well as the phrase length without 
affecting the pitch. You can also apply Scale Paste to graphically displayed 
continuous controller data to create both useful and unusual effects. 

Figure 6.13 

Edit window uses a 
unique hybrid 
display that com- 
bines a piano-roll 
format with musical 
notation. Additional 
“staves’* show 
other kinds of 
MIDI data. 

Selected regions can also be transposed up or down by a half step, a scale 
step, or an octave and quantized fully or halfway. Another useful feature in 
DeluxeRecorder lets you make a Rubato recording, playing freely without 
the metronome; afterward, you can establish the correct barline positions 
(relative to the music) with the Fit Music to Beat Lines option. This aligns 
the measures with the program’s internal clock and displays the resulting 

Sequencing on Easy Street 


tempo changes on the Tempo staff. Step recording in DeluxeRecorder is 
similar to that in other sequencers where note values are selected from a 
menu and placed on the staff by playing from a MIDI controller, with the 
degree of legato or staccato determined by the specified Duration value. 

Aside from the Grand Staff, you can include any combination of additional 
staves in the Edit window. These are actually single lines or horizontal 
fields that display a variety of non-note MIDI data. The Edit window 
allows graphic displays of continuous controller data, pitch bend, tempo 
changes, time signature changes, velocity, and program-change numbers, 
among others. Data in these staves can be inserted and edited by using the 
same tools that are available for note editing. Changing parameters is easy 
and intuitive, often making use of pop-up windows and dialog boxes. 

DeluxeRecorder represents yet another effort to bring affordable sequenc- 
ing to the masses. Its unusual approach to recording, along with its clearly 
designed graphic displays, gives it a character all its own. It doesn’t have a 
mixer window nor does it provide an option for chaining sequences, but it 
does offer high resolution, several imique options, an excellent manual, and 
a note event display that many will find quite functional and intuitive. 

I Encore 

Encore, from Passport Designs, has long enjoyed a reputation for being a 
smart and intuitive notation program that, with the right printer, can pro- 
duce publisher-quality sheet music without imposing an arduous learning 
curve. But many people are unaware of Encore’s other side. Technically 
speaking. Encore is also a sequencer since it enables you to record, notate, 
edit, and play back MIDI performances. To be sure, it does have its limita- 
tions. You can only view data in standard musical notation, you can’t edit 
continuous controller events, there is no mixer window, and you can’t edit 
program changes. Quantizing options are similarly limited and there are 
none of the sophisticated recording and editing features that some se- 
quencers provide. 

On the other hand. Encore does have a lot to offer even aside from its 
manuscript-layout capabilities. With it you can create a piece of music with 


up to four voices per staff and as many as 64 staves per sequence. The 
music can be played back on any of 32 MIDI channels (16 from each port) 
and can import Standard MIDI Files as well as files from Master Tracks 
Pro 5 and Trax, which share its 240-ppqn note resolution. Unlike the other 
programs in this group, Encore costs more than the high-end sequencers in 
Chapter 5. It is included in this section because its sequencing abilities 
more nearly match the products in this chapter, rather than those in the 
previous one. You must decide, therefore, whether the music manuscript 
editing and printing capabilities justify the additional cost for your particu- 
lar application. 

Nearly all of the operations in Encore are centered on the Edit window 
(Figure 6.14), which contains the Record and Play buttons, the cursor 
options, and the musical staves. Seven palettes of symbols can be accessed 
for selecting note values along with a plethora of markings and musical 

Aside from importing MIDI files, you can enter music into the program 
in several ways. Step-recording options in Encore resemble those in other 
programs. You can select note values from the Notes Palette and deposit 
them anywhere on the staff with the mouse, or you can play the notes one 
at a time from your MIDI keyboard. If you prefer, you can perform the 
music in real time while Encore displays the note heads on the staff as you 

Sequencing on Easy Street 


play. Since your performance will not likely be metrically perfea, Encore 
uses its Guess Durations command to make an educated guess about your 
musical intentions from a notational standpoint. It then supplies the appro- 
priate flags, stems, and beams to transform your performance into written 
music. In most cases, this feature works surprisingly well, eliminating the 
blizzard of 32nd rests, tied notes, and illegible clusters that mar the func- 
tionality of many other sequencers using standard notation. 

Regardless of the method of note entry chosen, you can adjust the appear- 
ance of the score as well as the music’s playback characteristics by choosing 
one of several editing options. Selected areas can be cut, copied, pasted, 
deleted, and mbced. Additionally, you can transpose the music and change 
its key, meter, tempo, note durations, velocities, and accidentals. If you’re 
printing the music, you can also add chord symbols, lyrics, and text. 

In truth, it’s a little unfair to compare Encore— designed to record and edit 
music for creating printed scores— with a more traditional sequencer- 
designed to record, edit, and play performances. Still, there is an undeni- 
able overlap in capabilities here. If you have academic training in 
composition. Encore is the closest you’re likely to come to combining 
MIDI with the traditional pencil and manuscript paper. 

One problem encountered in displaying MIDI data as standard notation is 
that most sequencers let you see only a few measures at a time. Encore does 
not suffer from this problem. It offers the opportunity to view several staves 
at once, and if you are using a 13- or 14-inch monitor, it is not impossible to 
view 30 or more measures per screen. On the other hand. Encore’s MIDI 
editing and organizing capabilities are basic. If you like working with on- 
screen manuscript paper and your recording and editing requirements are 
not too demanding, this program deserves consideration, especially if you 
work with singers and instrumentalists who need printed music. Encore’s 
logical, intuitive design, combined with its excellent documentation, makes 
it a pleasure to use. 

I Final Thoughts 

The sequencers in this chapter offer a surprising range of styles and fea- 
tures considering their modest prices. They are often marketed to MIDI 



neoph 3 ^es but are actually quite suitable for anyone who doesn’t need or 
can’t afford the power and complexity of the high-end sequencers. Multi- 
media producers, in particular, should find these programs adequate for 
playing and adjusting Standard MIDI Files for inclusion in presentations. 

These programs are not without their limitations, however. All but one lack 
SMPTE timecode capabilities, and they all provide fewer types of editing 
environments and fewer editing and recording options. Still, they represent 
a good, though variable, balance between features and price. 

EZ Vision is clearly the strongest contender in this group. It offers high 
resolution, the ability to chain sequences, graphic display and editing of 
continuous controller data, and a logical, intuitive design. Furthermore, it’s 
hard to beat its color support, multitrack display, and online help. 

Trax offers its own combination of strong points. Rather than the 16-track 
limit in EZ Vision, Trax provides up to 64 tracks per sequence and allows 
you to assign any MIDI channel to any track. It also boasts a multi-record 
option that lets you record on several tracks from several MIDI channels 

Ballade has some especially nice graphics, SMPTE support, and a time- 
scaling feature, while DeluxeRecorder offers unique recording options com- 
bined with its hybrid note-event display and continuous controller editing. 
Finally, Encore brings together the worlds of traditional notation and MIDI 
performance in a program that is elegant and logical, though a bit pricey. 

Since many of these programs are aimed at beginners, their documentation 
becomes especially important. Top honors go to EZ Vision, Encore, and 
DeluxeRecorder for manuals that are lucid, comprehensive, and well 
designed. The Trax manual is concise and readable but loses points for the 
inexcusable absence of an index. The Ballade manual looks much better 
than it is but may be improved in future revisions. 


Adagio M.M 

mttfy voce 

Instant MIDI 


/ IS presentation programs acquire more sophistication and visual displays 

become more advanced, an ever-increasing need arises for music-production 
quality to keep pace. Several programs can trigger external devices, such as 
compact disc players, and this will certainly add high-fidelity music to your 
presentation. But this arrangement offers little flexibility and no real editing 
capability. Digitized audio provides greater editing potential as well as more 
flexibility, but to produce CD-quality stereo sound requires enormous 
amounts of memory and usually involves additional plug-in cards. To cap- 
ture that elusive combination of great flexibility, high fidelity, and reason- 
able cost, multimedia producers are turning in growing numbers to MIDI 
music sequences. 

MIDI sequences, as I explained in Chapter 4, are simply files containing 
the performance data needed to re-create a musical composition via MIDI. 
To add sequenced music to a presentation, you’ll need a synthesizer or 
sound module, a sequencer program, and a MIDI interface. In a later chap- 
ter we’ll examine a line of computer-music peripherals offered by Roland 
Corp., which attests to the burgeoning popularity of this hardware/software 
solution to music production. 

Unlike digitized audio, music sequences do not require large amounts of 
memory, and since the music is re-created in real time directly from the 
sound modules, there won’t be any degradation of sound quality associated 
with some recording processes. Most significantly, with any of the current 
crop of professional-level sequencer programs, you can apply music editing 
capabilities ranging from the most infinitesimal alterations to the most 



global of commands. With a few mouse clicks you can change the tempo of 
a melody, shift the attack of a chord forward or backward by milliseconds, 
or transpose an entire piece down a half step. Sections of a song can be 
extracted and recombined and in many other ways a piece of music can be 
customized to fit your presentation. Although digital audio lets you cut, 
copy, and paste, only MIDI lets you select the third oboe part in measure 17, 
beat 3, and change it to an alto sax. The ability to tailor a piece of music 
to a specific purpose by reorchestrating gives MIDI music an irresistible 

Once you decide to use MIDI sequences for your presentation, you have to 
consider the next logical step— acquiring good music. There are several 
possibilities to weigh; 1. You can hire a composer to write the music and 
deliver it in the form of MIDI files on a floppy disk. 2. You can use a MIDI 
keyboard along with a sequencer to create the music yourself Or if these 
options seem too daunting then fear not! Third-party vendors have jumped 
in to fill the void by providing presequenced MIDI music. These MIDI files 
are to music what clip art is to the world of graphics— prefabricated works 
that can be edited and customized to suit your final application. But before 
we take a more detailed look at this rapidly growing resource, let’s examine 
a few products that can give you a head start in putting together your own 
music sequences for presentations. 

■I In the Background 

One of the simplest and least expensive offerings comes from New Sound 
Music. Its Background Rhythm Patterns come as a collection of 
157 popular rhythm tracks in a wide variety of musical styles, including 
Rock, Pop, Funk, Heavy Metal, Fusion, Blues, Latin, Jazz, and many 
more. There are no melodies here, simply drums, keyboard, and bass com- 
bined to form a professional-sounding rhythm section for those who want 
to do their own composing but may lack extensive training in popular 
music styles. These 4-, 8-, and 12-bar phrases use chord progressions and 
accompaniment techniques that perfectly capture the flavor of the different 
musical styles. As a reference tool alone, it provides a great way to acquaint 
yourself with the myriad styles coexisting in the world of popular music 
today, but it also serves as a great source of inspiration when you need some 

Instant MIDI 

121 ^ 

help generating new ideas. Simply choose the pattern you want, loop it 
with your sequencer, and start performing. If you want to build longer 
sequences you can cut, copy, and paste the patterns and your sequencer will 
let you add key and tempo changes as needed. For more professional 
arrangements the library also includes 35 breaks, intros, and endings, and 
an additional 130 drum patterns in various styles. 

New Sotmd Music also offers a second library of background patterns 
dedicated entirely to Latin and Afro-Cuban rh 3 rthms. This volume includes 
70 rhythm patterns along with breaks, intros, fills, and endings. Some 
sequences even include piano and percussion solos, and the documentation 
provides notes on constructing and pla 3 nng original Latin songs. 

New Sound’s Backgroimd Rhythm Patterns come in the form of Standard 
MIDI Files using channels 1, 2, and 3 for drums, piano, and bass respec- 
tively, so they’ll work with any multitimbral soimd module having on-board 
drum sounds. The manual includes complete chord charts for all sequences 
as well as general information. 

If you’re especially interested in jazz and would like to improve your under- 
standing and technique. New Sound offers Jazz Through MIDI, a course 
in jazz improvising for all levels. Jazz Through MIDI includes 60 profes- 
sionally arranged, solos or riffs, accompanied by the same piano, bass, and 
drum setup mentioned above. Each sequence consists of 8-, 12-, 16-, or 
32-bar phrases transmitted on MIDI channels 1 through 4, in an impres- 
sive array of styles including Bebop, Modal, Blues, Fusion, Swing, and Jazz 
Waltz. From a pedagogic standpoint, this product has a wealth of informa- 
tion for the study of jazz, but it’s also a great source of short, professional- 
sotmding sequences for use with presentations. The jazz phrases can be 
edited, combined, and looped into longer sections, and you can add more 
parts if you like. The documentation shows all of the solo parts and 
includes explanations, lessons, and tips for learning more about jazz. 

If you’re looking for a library of dramatic or backgroimd music, more 
in the vein of traditional film scoring. New Sound Music offers a 
third product of particular interest. Soundtracks for MIDI is a collection of 
over 90 sequences designed specifically for multimedia, film, and video. They 
are labeled genetically by type and include titles like Industrial/Sports, Nature, 




Comedy, Action/Suspense, Drama, TV News, Fantasy, and more. These come 
orchestrated in a variety of ways using as many as seven parts. 

The sequences are actually phrases ranging from one to ten measures that 
you can loop or combine with other phrases to create a customized 
soundtrack. Your sequencer program will also let you adjust the tempo and 
pitch, and you can add or subtract parts and change the orchestration to 
suit your taste. Soundtracks for MIDI comes with a manual that includes 
chord charts for all sequences and additional information on setting up. 

9 Band-in-a-Box 

Another approach to creating background accompaniments comes from PG 
Music’s Band-in-a-Box. With this “intelligent” software, you type in the 
chords to any song, choose one of the 24 musical styles (Figure 7.1), and 
Band-in-a-Box generates professional-quality dnan, bass, piano, guitar, and 
string parts complete with fills, variations, and embellishments. 

Figure 7.1 

Band-in-a-Box lets 
you choose from 
a long list of 
styles for your 

Choose n stijle 1 

Oaozz Sujing 

O Pop Ballad 

O Jazz IBaltz 

O Country (12/8) 

O Shuffle Rock 

O Rhumba 

O Country (4/4) 

(flight Rock 

O Cha Cha 

O Bosso Nona 

O Medium Rock 

O Bouncy 12/8 

O ethnic 

O Heouy Rock 

O Irish 

O Blues (Shuffle) 

O Miami Sound 

OPop 8ollad 12/8 

O Blues (Euen) 

O Mllly Pop 

O Country 12/8 (Old) 

OlBoitz (Bid) 


O Reggae 

( Ok in 

Cancel ) Q 




Creating new songs is easy. After opening the main window (Figure 7.2), 
you just enter chords where you want (up to four per measure) by typing in 
standard chord symbols. You can also indicate the structure of the song by 
placing markers at the start and end of the intro and each chorus and verse. 
Band-in-a-Box uses these markers to add appropriate drum fills, just like a 
live drummer, to set up each seaion and add momentum to the piece. 

Instant MIDI 


Figure 7.2 

To create an 
arrangement in 
Band-in-a-Box, just 
type your chord 
changes into the 
main display. You 
can also use markers 
to indicate the struc- 
ture of your song. 

Evening Breeze 

Jazz Waltz Key: G Tempo 170 ( I -36 ) * 3 


2 Em7 

3 F«m7b5 

4 B7 

5 Em7 

6 A9 

7 Dm7 

8 07 

9 CMAJ7 


11 Cm7 

12 F7 

13 BbMAJ7 


15 Bbm7 

16 Eb7 

17 AbMAJ7 



■■20 07 

21 Bm7 

22 Bb7 

23 Am7 

24 07 

BO 6 


27 F*m7b5 

28 B7 

29 Em7 

30 A7 

31 Dm7 

32 07 

33 CMAJ7 


35 Cm7 

36 R 

37 B6MAJ7 


39 Bbm7 

40 Eb7 

41 AbMAJ7 


43 Am7b5 

44 07 

45 Bm7b5 



48 E7 

49 Am7 


51 D7 


33 Bm7 

54 Bbdtm 

55 Am7 

56 07 











For variety^ each of the styles has two “substyles,” which you can also 
selea for the different sections of your song. In the Jazz Swing style, for 
example, the “a” substyle plays a two-beat feel, while the “b” substyle 
plays in swing. Jazz styles can gain even more authenticity when you toggle 
on the Chord Embellishment option, which “intelligently” adds occasional 
9ths and 13ths to the appropriate chords to enrich the harmonic texture. 

Once you have chords and markers, all you have to do is choose a style, set the 
tempo, and push Play. When you’re familiar with the program, entering the 
parameters for a typical song shouldn’t take more than about two or three 
minutes. You can make up your own chord progressions or choose harmonies 
from your favorite tunes. 

For more choices, the Band-in-a-Box Professional Edition adds over 75 ad- 
ditional styles to the program for an impressive collection of more than 
100 different musical styles for your palette. If that’s not enough to suit 
you, Band-in-a-Box also provides an elaborate and sophisticated StyleMaker 
feature, which lets you create your own styles and add them to the list. If 
you want to add a melody to your arrangements, the program provides a 
simple, built-in sequencer, and the Pro Edition also includes 100 jazz 
standards complete with melody and chord changes. 


3 124 

Band-in-a-Box supports the General MIDI Standard, with specific support 
(optional) for the Roland Sound Canvas (see below). You can store hun- 
dreds of songs on a floppy disk or convert them into Standard MIDI Files, 
which you can import into your sequencer for editing or adding other parts. 
The great advantage of this software lies in its ability to easily change musi- 
cal styles while retaining the original chord progression and song structure. 
This gives you the opportunity to capture the right musical feel for your 
presentation without destructive editing or additional rewriting. 

S The Beat Goes On 

If you can’t afford or don’t want a drum machine, but still need help writ- 
ing rhythm parts. Five Pin Press has just the thing to get you started. Its 
260 Instant Drum Patterns come on a disk as Standard MIDI Files in a 
wide variety of styles, including Afro-Cuban, Blues, Boogie, Disco, Latin, 
Jazz, Funk, Rock, Reggae, etc. The program defaults to the Roland D-1 10 
drum note assignments (similar to MT-32, CM-32L, and SC-55), but any 
sound module with built-in drum sounds will work (conversion tables are 
provided). The patterns, each one measure long, were written by drummer 
Rene-Pierre Bardet and appear in his book 260 Drum Machine Patterns 
(Hal Leonard Publ.), which is included with the software. In the book 
you’ll find all of the patterns from the disk written out in musical notation 
and grid form, allowing you to study and compare the rhythms. To use the 
patterns, you import them into your sequencer and copy, paste, or loop 
the measures into longer sections. Your sequencer will let you adjust the 
tempo and edit the patterns to create new rhythms. 

For many people, writing professional-sounding drum tracks is the most 
difficult part of composing popular music. 260 Instant Drum Patterns can 
give you an inexpensive helping hand in creating your background rhythm 
sections. The documentation is clear and helpful, and the accompan 3 nng 
book makes it easy to see and analyze each pattern. 

SI Out of Sequence 

The programs above illustrate ways in which sequenced music can facilitate 
MIDI music production by providing a good starting place for those who 

Instant MIDI 


plan to do their own composing and/or arranging. Many multimedia pro- 
ducers, however, will want to skip the composing stage altogether and go 
directly to editing the music. This is really what presequenced MIDI music 
is all about. These arrangements are complete, professionally performed 
and edited renditions of popular music with heavy representation in the 
areas of Top 40s hits. Oldies but Goodies, Country & Western, and Stan- 
dards. Many of the songs are note-for-note reproductions of the original full 
arrangements while others may be scaled down to accommodate smaller 

The music sequences arrive in the form of Standard MIDI Files, which all 
of the software sequencers mentioned in Chapters 5 and 6 can convert into 
their own formats for full access to their editing capabilities. When you 
open a file in the program of yoinr choice, you will see a list of instruments 
with their corresponding tracks and MIDI channel numbers. To run a 
sequence you simply select the appropriate instrument soimds from yoin 
multitimbral sound module and assign them to the corresponding MIDI 
channels. Push “start” and there you have it— instant big-band MIDI! 

Well, maybe it’s not quite that simple. There are a few additional consider- 
ations that must be taken into account. For one thing, it’s assiuned that you 
are already familiar with the pieces you’ll be using before you begin. If you 
have never heard a particular Top 40 song, for instance, you may run into 
difficulties attempting to reconstruct an accurate rendition of it based upon 
the one- or two-word descriptions given for each instrument. Some com- 
panies might list a track simply as BASS. This leaves it up to you to decide 
if it should be a funky bass, slap bass, electronic bass, acoustic bass. Fender 
bass, etc. Your choice will affect the stylistic accuracy of the final arrange- 
ment even though most sequences will allow for some latitude. For best 
results, try to listen to the original recording of a piece to determine the 
best selections for each instrument sound. Remember that you will always 
be limited by the available sounds in your particular soimd module. 

I General MIDI 

The problem of assigning appropriate instrument soxmds to a sequence has 
plagued producers of MIDI music products for some time now. The birth 



of the Standard MIDI File was an important first step in providing com- 
plete exchangeability of MIDI data between dissimilar systems. Using this 
standardized file format, a composer could perform a piece of music on a 
Korg Ml and record the data using Vision. He might then send the 
sequence to a friend, who could use Performer to re-create the piece on a 
Kawai K4. Ever}ahing should work just fine and dandy except for one 
thing— the music won’t sound the same to both people. That’s because 
different synthesizers use different methods for creating their sounds and 
use different internal architectures for numbering and organizing those 
sounds. Program change commands become impractical to use since the 
piano sound in one MIDI device, for example, is not likely to use the same 
program number as another device. Furthermore, each synthesizer or 
sound module has its own distinct collection of soimds, so you can’t auto- 
matically assume that the shakuhachi melody you recorded in measure 6 
won’t end up being played by a tuba or a marimba when the time comes. 

To professional musicians this lack of universality is annoying but not 
insurmountable. It’s viewed as a necessary by-product of the rich pluralism 
that characterizes the world of MIDI. Nonetheless, as MIDI continued to 
evolve, it was clear that some needs were not being met. To this end 
Warner New Media recommended to the MIDI Manufacturers Association 
a few years ago that a new standardized subset of the MIDI protocols be 
established. Although initially met with indifference, the proposal, sup- 
ported by Passport Designs and several other companies, was finally 
adopted and General MIDI was born. 

The purpose of General MIDI is to introduce a level of predictability in 
the way that certain “consumer” sound modules respond to MIDI. This, 
in turn, opens the way for true plug-and-play MIDI systems, with little or 
no setup time and few unexpected results. Multimedia producers, in partic- 
ular, can benefit enormously from the combination of Standard MIDI Files 
and General MIDI and indeed, the original aim of General MIDI was for 
use with CD + MIDI— a format that combines MIDI data with CD audio. 

General MIDI works by describing the physical requirements that a 
GM-compatible sound module must have. It specifies, for example, that an 
instrument must respond to all 16 MIDI channels with at least 24-voice 
polyphony and with middle C corresponding to note number 60. General 

Instant MIDI 


MIDI reserves channel 10 for percussion parts and also specifies that veloc- 
ity, aftertouch, pitch bend, panning, volume, and several other continuous 
controller messages be implemented. 

The core of General MIDI, however, lies in the Instrument Patch Map— a 
list of 128 sounds along with their assigned program numbers (Figure 7.3). 
The sounds are divided into 16 categories, each containing eight related 
entries and covering a broad sonic spearum ranging from orchestral instru- 
ments, vocal ensembles, and keyboards to ethnic instruments, electronic 
timbres, and sound effects. By dictating the presence of certain kinds of 
sounds and standardizing their arrangement numerically. General MIDI 
effectively provides a template for manufacturers to follow in designing 
their instruments. 

To standardize the placement of drum notes for rhythm parts. General 
MIDI provides a Percussion Key Map, which lists the specified percussion 
sounds and assigns them to individual MIDI notes (Figure 7.4). These two 
MIDI maps are not intended in any way to limit the potential for new 
sound modules but rather to ensure that a basic set of instrument sounds 
will be present and organized in a predictable manner. Furthermore, Gen- 
eral MIDI does not specify how the sounds are synthesized or how well 
they sound, so manufacturers will continue to produce distinctive and 
uniquely characteristic instruments. General MIDI does, however, offer the 
opportunity to play a GM-compatible Standard MIDI File on several dif- 
ferent General MIDI devices and have the music sound approximately the 
same— at least without any shocking surprises. 

Roland Corp. recently introduced the first General MIDI sound module: 
the SC-55 (Sound Canvas). It represents a significant improvement over 
Roland’s enormously popular MT-32 module, which had become a sort of 
de facto standard for many producers of presequenccd music. To maintain a 
level of compatibility with these sequences, the SC-55 provides an MT-32 
mode that mimics the patch-list arrangement of the earlier instrument, 
although its system-exclusive messages won’t be recognized. 

Some companies still offer their sequences configured in advance to play 
on the default settings of the Roland MT-32 (also on the CM-32L and 
CM-64), as well as other brands of synthesizers. This is helpful for those 



Figure 7.3 

The General 
MIDI Instrument 
Patch Map (printed 
by permission of 
the International 
MIDI Association) 

General MIDI - 
Sound Set 

Level 1 


Acoustic Grand Piano 




Lead 7 (fifths) 


Bright Acoustic Piano 


Tremolo Strings 


Lead 8 (bass + lead) 


Electric Grand Piano 


Pizzicato Strings 


Pad 1 (new age) 


Honky-tonk Piano 


Orchestral Harp 


Pad 2 (warm) 


Electric Piano 1 




Pad 3 (polysynth) 


Electric Piano 2 


String Ensemble 1 


Pad 4 (choir) 




String Ensemble 2 


Pad 5 (bowed) 




SynthStrings 1 


Pad 6 (metallic) 




SynthStrings 2 


Pad 7 (halo) 




Choir Aahs 


Pad 8 (sweep) 


Music Box 


Voice Oohs 


FX 1 (rain) 




Synth Voice 


FX 2 (soundtrack) 




Orchestra Hit 


FX 3 (crystal) 






FX 4 (atmosphere) 


Tubular Bells 




FX 5 (brightness) 






FX 6 (goblins) 


Drawbar Organ 


Muted Trumpet 


FX 7 (echoes) 


Percussive Organ 


French Horn 


FX 8 (sci-fi) 


Rock Organ 


Brass Section 




Church Organ 


SynthBrass 1 




Reed Organ 


SynthBrass 2 






Soprano Sax 






Alto Sax 




Tango Accordion 


Tenor Sax 


Bag pipe 


Acoustic Guitar (nylon) 


Baritone Sax 




Acoustic Guitar (steel) 






Electric Guitar (jaz 2 ) 


English Horn 


Tinkle Bell 


Electric Guitar (clean) 






Electric Guitar (muted) 




Steel Drums 


Overdriven Guitar 






Distortion Guitar 




Taiko Drum 


Guitar harmonics 




Melodic Tom 


Acoustic Bass 


Pan Flute 


Synth Drum 


Electric Bass (finger) 


Blown Bottle 


Reverse Cymbal 


Electric Bass (pick) 




Guitar Fret Noise 


Fretless Bass 




Breath Noise 


Slap Bass 1 






Slap Bass 2 


Lead 1 (square) 


Bird Tweet 


Synth Bass 1 


Lead 2 (sawtooth) 


Telephone Ring 


Synth Bass 2 


Lead 3 (calliope) 






Lead 4 (chifO 






Lead 5 (charang) 






Lead 6 (voice) 


Instant MIDI 


Figure 7.4 

The General 
MIDI Percussion 
Key Map (printed 
by permission of 
the International 
MIDI Association) 

General MIDI - Level 1 
Percussion Map (Channel 10) 

Key H 

Drum Soured 


Drum Sound 


Drum Sound 


Acoustic Bass Drum 


Ride Cymbal 1 


High Agogo 


Bass Drum 1 


Chinese Cymbal 


Low Agogo 


Side Stick 


Ride Bell 




Acoustic Snare 






Hand Clap 


Splash Cymbal 


Short Whistle 


Electnc Snare 




Long Whistle 


Low Floor Tom 


Crash Cymbal 2 


Short Guiro 


Closed Hi Hat 




Long Guiro 


High Floor Tom 


Ride Cymbal 2 




Pedal H.-Hat 


Hi Bongo 


Hi Wood Block 


Low Tom 


Low Bongo 


Lov# Wood Block 


Open Hi-Hat 


Mute Hi Conga 


Mute Cuica 


Low-Mid Tom 


Open Hi Conga 


Open Cuica 


Hi Mid Tom 


Low Conga 


Mute Triangle 


Crash Cymbal 1 


High Timbale 


Open Triangle 


High Tom 


Low Timbale 

unfamiliar with the arrangement of a particular song or for those seeking 
instant gratification with zero setup time. It’s important to remember that 
some inexpensive sound modules may not provide enough polyphonic 
capability to play a full-blown band arrangement by themselves. Because of 
this, any sequence directed toward a specific module may be scaled down to 
accommodate the hardware limitations. 

Most companies offer only generic sequences, preferring not to compro- 
mise their arrangements, but some offer both an MT-32 version and a 
fuller, more complete, generic version for those users with more than one 
sound module or synthesizer. With a little editing, however, most of the 
currently available sound modules can be made to work well with most 
sequences. Many producers of sequenced music, recognizing the vast 
potential of General MIDI, now offer either all or most of their libraries in 
that format as well. Some target their sequences specifically for the Roland 
SC-55, which they feel is destined to become another immensely popular 
industry standard. 



Losing Your Voice 

One final caveat. Some companies intend their sequences to be used as 
accompaniments during live performances and, therefore, don’t include the 
melody or vocal line in the sequence. They assume that a singer will cover 
that part. These sequences can still work as general backgroimd music for 
some presentations, but if you want the tune included, you will have to 
perform it into the sequencer yourself. Most of the products include a 
melody track for reference, which you can assign to the instrument of your 

9 What's Out There 

The following is an alphabetical listing of most of the currently available 
presequenced music products along with brief descriptions; 

Bach Songbook A single disk containing a nice collection of Bach’s 
keyboard works, including all of the two-part inventions, several three-part 
sinfonias, and a couple of four-part fugues. They arrive as Standard MIDI 
Files in a generic format with parts indicated by channel numbers only. 
There is no documentation. You can produce your own “Switched on 
Bach” arrangements by applying a little creative orchestration to these files. 
(Dr. T’s Music Software) 

DTP & Multimedia CD This CD-ROM, designed to be a collection of 
materials for desktop publishing and multimedia, contains 39 MIDI sequences 
in addition to its clip art, fonts, and digital audio files. The sequences come in 
the form of generic MIDI files, with mostly original works in various pop 
styles and a few classical transcriptions. The minimal documentation isn’t 
much help. The performances are fair. (Olduvai Corp.) 

MIDI Hits Approximately 200 titles in the usual categories: Top 40s, 
Oldies, Country/Westem, Big Band, Jazz, and Classical. These come as 
Standard MIDI Files preconfigured for the Roland MT-32, but can be 
easily adapted to other sound modules. Most are also available in General 

Instant MIDI 


MIDI format and support the Roland Sound Canvas. Melody parts are 
usually present. The documentation is exceptional and exemplary. 

(Passport Designs, Inc.) 

MIDI Hits The MIDI Hits library is very large (1,000-plus titles) and 
impressive in its range of musical styles. It includes the usual Top 40 hits. 
Oldies but Goodies, and Country/Western favorites, as well as Big Band 
Jazz, Jazz Combos, Jazz Fusion, Show Tunes, Standards, Wedding Music, 
Piano Music, Dixieland, Classical, Patriotic music, and more. Many of the 
sequences are note-for-note reproductions of the original recordings, and 
most of the titles include the melody. Several pieces also contain choir 
tracks to represent background vocal parts. The sequences come as generic 
files. The documentation is minimal, consisting of a printout of the 
instrument and drum note assignments. (Phil Wood Consulting) 

MIDI Inn MIDI Inn offers a substantial library of over 450 titles in a 
variety of styles, including Top 40s, Big Band, Motown, and Jazz Standards 
(arranged for small combos). The sequences, which support the General 
MIDI Standard, include the melody lines. The documentation is very good. 

MIDI Jukebox Over 150 titles in the usual categories of Top 40s, Oldies, 
Big Band, Coimtry Western, etc. All support the General MIDI Standard, 
with particular support for Roland’s Sound Canvas (SC-55) soimd module. 

A separate catalog of titles is also available under the name Multimedia 
Artists Sequences. It includes the following categories: Christian, Jazz/Big 
Band, Classical, and Pop/Top 40s. These are fuller, more complex arrange- 
ments designed to take full advantage of the SC-55— also available in 
General MIDI format. Sequences include a melody pan but little doc- 
lunentation. Parker Adams also offers a Wedding Package, which includes 
approximately 100 wedding songs and a MIDI Wedding Guide manual. 
Membership in several user groups is also offered supporting the Sovmd 
Canvas, the MT-32, the Proteus, and several other soimd modules. (Parker 
Adams Group) 

MIDIclips This product consists of a single CD-ROM with at least 140 “clips 
of original production music, in various styles, designed specifically for desk- 
top presentations and multimedia. The music comes in the form of 8-bit 



digital audio files along with the same pieces in Standard MIDI File 
format. The sequences support the General MIDI Standard and come 
with some documentation. A database function lets you search for pieces 
according to various criteria. Additional volumes will be available. 

(Opcode Systems, Inc.) 

MIDIFile Tunes Four dozen musical arrangements on a single disk, 
including movie and TV themes. Top 40 hits, and others. These arrive as 
Standard MIDI Files, but in the less common Format 0, which combines 
all channels onto a single track. When you import these into your 
sequencer, there won’t be any indication as to which instruments are on 
which channels. Only some of the sequences come with text files showing 
the instrument/channel assignments. Performances range from fair to good. 
Many of the sequences seem to be targeted toward the Roland MT-32. 
There is no additional documentation. (Educorp) 

MultiMedia HANDisc The MultLMedia HANDisc is designed to be 
a resource collection for multimedia producers. It includes artwork, 
HyperCard stacks, product demos, tutorials, QuickTime movies, and more. 
In its Sounds folder you’ll find both digitized audio and a few dozen MIDI 
files. The MIDI music comes from a variety of sources. There are some 
samples from Opcode’s and Passport’s MIDI libraries along with several 
miscellaneous sequences of original music. Some of these additional files 
come with documentation; others don’t. They range in quality from fair to 
good. There’s also a demo of Passport’s AudioTrax program, which lets 
you combine digital audio with MIDI. (CD Technology) 

Mus-Art Productions Mus-Art offers a very large catalog listing over 
1200 titles, including Top 40s, Oldies, Standards, Big Band, Country, and 
Christmas. The sequences adhere to the General MIDI Standard, and 
about half of the songs include a melody part. Dociunentation consists of a 
track sheet showing instrument names and channel assignments. Mus-Art 
also operates its own BBS. 

QuikTunes The QuikTunes collection comes on a single CD-ROM. The 
pieces are all original production music in styles such as Sports, Jazz, New 

Instant MIDI 


Age, Travel, Nature, Industrial, etc., along with intros, stings, and fanfares. 
The music comes in various lengths designed specifically for multimedia, 
film, and video. The CD contains about an hour of music in 8-bit digital 
audio with the same pieces also offered as MIDI sequences. These files 
support the General MIDI Standard, and the whole package includes 
excellent documentation along with a HyperCard browser that lets you 
locate and preview the different song files. Additional volumes will also be 
available. (Passport Designs, Inc.) 

Tran Tracks A substantial offering of over 500 titles, including the 
following categories: Rh)n:hm & Blues, Rock & Roll, Pop/Dance, Oldies, 
Big Band, Classical Piano, and Coimtry/Westem. These come as generic 
sequences— a large number do not have melody parts. Tran Tracks also 
offers MIDI Pacs— five-song collections set up for instant playback on the 
MT-32 (CM-32L/CM-64). These songs have melody parts. The generic 
sequences include an octave test to ensure that each track plays back at the 
proper register— a handy feature. The documentation is excellent. 

Trycho Tunes One of the largest libraries of MIDI sequences available. 
Over 1400 titles from several categories, including Top 40s, Oldies, 
Standards, Big Band, Coimtry, and Christmas. The sequences come in a 
variety of formats, including support for the General MIDI Standard. The 
songs are programmed with a “live band” concept, typically using four to 
eight channels. Many songs include a melody track. The documentation is 
excellent and has track lists and other information on instruments and 
setups. Trycho also sells sheet music and songbooks to go with its 
sequences. (Trycho Music International) 

The Works Music Productions, Inc. A large catalog offering over 
500 songs in categories including Top 40s, Oldies, Country/Western, 
Rhythm & Blues, Standards, Big Band, and Christmas. The sequences 
arrive in a generic format and include a melody part. The doaunentation 
is very good. 



si Some Final Tips 

If you are considering using sequenced music for your presentations, but 
have not yet purchased any hardware, here are some suggestions: 

■ Give preference to soimd modules and s 3 mthesizers with the 
greatest maximum polyphony. Roland’s popular MT-32 or the 
similar CM-32L are fine for many of the products listed here, 
but the CM-64 with its doubled maximum pol 3 TDhony is much 
better and less limiting. 

■ Check your local music store for sound modules by other manu- 
facturers, such as Yamaha, Kawai, E-mu Systems, Ensoniq, and 
Korg. These companies all offer multitimbral modules with 
different user interfaces and different sounds. 

■ You can combine two or more MIDI devices from the same or 
different manufacturers to expand your available palette of 
sounds and to increase your maximum polyphony. Be sure that 
at least one of them has internal drum sounds. 

■ Most of the MIDI-sequence companies listed above will send a 
demo tape or disk on request. Be prepared to accurately describe 
your hardware/software configuration, and don’t hesitate to ask 


sottn vncc 

Meets MIDI 


I \emember when HyperCard made its world debut and quickly became the 
talk of the town? It seems like a long time ago, doesn’t it? In those days 
having a button go “boing” when you pushed it or hearing a fragment of 
scratchy-sovmding digitized speech when you clicked on a picture was excit- 
ing stuff. Well, times have changed. New combinations of hardware and 
software can transform a simple Macintosh into a “digital audio work- 
station” producing CD-quality sound from the desktop. Meanwhile, multi- 
media programs like MacroMind Director have reached maturity by 
combining the production of dazzling animation with access to a variety of 
external devices. 

While all of this was going on, MIDI evolved in some unexpected ways. 
Originally conceived as a means of tying together elearonic instruments for 
performance and recording, it expanded laterally into areas of postproduc- 
tion audio and even some nonmusical applications. It is, therefore, not 
surprising that a growing demand for low-cost, high-quality, interactive 
multimedia would eventually bring together accessible, flexible HyperCard 
and spontaneous, real-time MIDI. 

S Hardware and Software 

To incorporate MIDI music into a HyperCard presentation, you’ll need 
one of the basic setups described in Chapter 3. An inexpensive MIDI inter- 
face and a sound module will work just fine for staners. The great thing 



about MIDI is that it divides the responsibility for making music between 
the computer and an external instrument. This means that the load on the 
Mac’s processor is low and the files don’t require much memory compared 
to digital audio. In fact, a few minutes of CD-quality, stereo, digital music 
would require the same disk storage as hundreds of MIDI files representing 
hours of music. And with one of the sequencer programs described in 
Chapters 5 and 6, you can edit the music in a great variety of ways, chang- 
ing such things as orchestration, tempo, and key. The products discussed in 
this chapter all combine HyperCard and MIDI in different ways to provide 
information, programming tools, or postproduction editing capabilities. 


SOUNDtraK, from Opcode Systems, is itself a HyperCard stack that helps 
you make the MIDI-HyperCard connection quickly and painlessly. It 
comes on a CD-ROM packed with over 100 pieces of production music 
from Opcode’s MIDIclips library. This gives you a wealth of new material 
right out of the box, but you can add any Standard MIDI Files that you 
want to expand the list— keeping SOUNDtraK an open-ended resource 
tool for scoring any kind of HyperCard presentation. In fact, SOUNDtraK’s 
Library card (Figure 8.1) consists of a File Management section and an 
easy-to-use but powerful database to help you organize your ever-growing 
list of titles and to help you find the ones you want when you need them. 

On the right side of the card, the Search/Define section provides three 
boxes with scrolling lists of labels describing the music in your library 
according to style, descriptive adjective, and time period. Each time you 
add a new MIDI file to your library, you can define its characteristics with 
these lists. When you select a word from each of the three boxes, the selec- 
tions appear in the Current Description column. Clicking the Set Informa- 
tion for Selection button in the Music Library attaches your descriptive 
words to the selected MIDI file. From then on, you can search for that 
piece of music by entering any or all of those labels into the Current 
Description column and clicking the Search for Matches button. Not only 
can you label new pieces this way but you can change the labels for old 
pieces anytime you want. 

HyperCard Meets MIDI 


Figure 8.1 
Library card 
includes a section 
for maintaining and 
organizing your 
files and an easy-to- 
use but powerful 
database for locat- 
ing selections. 


Hard Drlvln*.KT 
Cut the Funk 60 Sec 
Black Tie & Tails mf 
Cut the Funk CM 
Guitar Alone .mf 
Hard Drivin’.mf 
Imaginary Western 





O Shov vhole 1i>rery 
(•) Shov search matches 


Music Libr.\ry 

File Management 









[T950T 1 


I j Favorite | 

If you don’t like the labels that come with the card, you can add your own 
by t)TDing in a word and clicking the appropriate Add button found under 
each list. To help make SOUNDtraK instantly usable, Opcode has 
included descriptive words for all of the MIDIclips files included with the 
stack. If you feel that using three descriptive categories is too restrictive for 
your needs, you can use the Comment Selection button to open a field 
where you can add comments to each file. SOUNDtraK will then take key 
words from your comments and use those to help locate selections. 

The large list on the left side of the card represents the available MIDI files 
in your library. You can add or delete files by choosing the appropriate but- 
ton under the File Management heading. When you selea a file in the 
Music Library, its current description appears in the Search/Define area on 
the right. This makes it easier to remember pieces if the titles alone don’t 
jog your memory, but when you’re dealing with a large list of titles, general 
labels usually don’t provide an accurate-enough sense of the music. To 
address this problem, Opcode has included a unique and powerful feature: 
Preview mode. 



By clicking the MIDI button in the Preview Mode box, you can audition a 
MIDI file directly from the Library card. This should work well if you’re 
using one of the supported MIDI devices (Roland CM-32L, Proteus/ 1) or a 
General MIDI soimd module, but for most other sound modules, you’ll 
have to spend a bit of time setting up channel, track, and instrument assign- 
ments. If you’re trying to preview many files or you’re working against a 
deadline, you may find the process too cumbersome to be practical with an 
unsupported MIDI device. As an alternative, SOUNDtraK provides an 
Audio preview button. 

With each of the Standard MIDI Files that come in the MIDIclips collec- 
tion, Opcode has included a corresponding digital audio version of the 
piece. These 8-bit, 22-kHz soundfiles are kept in an audio stack that 
SOUNDtraK accesses when you want to audition your selections. The 
concept here is that you can use the audio files to get a feeling for how the 
pieces soimd and what instrumentation and styles they use. You can even 
try running the audio file against your video or desktop presentation to see 
if the two go together well and which parts of the composition work best. 
When you have a selection that you want to use, you can click on the Edit/ 
Mbcer button in the Navigation Panel (Figure 8.2) to open a card that pro- 
vides the tools to mbc and edit the selected file to fit your visuals precisely. 

Figure 8.2 
The Navigation 
Panel takes you 
from one card to 
the next. 

SOUNDtraK divides its Edit/Mixer card (Figure 8.3) into two distinct 
halves. The lower half is a 16-track mixing board with faders. Solo and 
Mute buttons, a Pan control, and fields for displaying instrument names 
and numbers, and MIDI channels. When you selea a file fi’om the Music 
Library and click the appropriate button in the Navigation Panel, the file 
appears in the Edit/Mixer card with the corresponding channel and instru- 
ment settings and any fader positions that have been saved with the file. 

HyperCard Meets MIDI 

141 E 

Figure 8.3 
Edit/Mixer card 
combines a mixing 
board with several 
tools for tailoring 
music to picture. 

To prepare a piece of music for use with a presentation, you first use the 
transport controls to play back your MIDI file while you set the fader level 
and pan position for each instrument sound. If you don’t like the orchestra- 
tion, you can change the instrument assignments with a pop-up chart show- 
ing the internal sotmds for the assigned MIDI device. When the music 
sounds right, you can turn your attention to the editing half of the card. 

In the upper-right corner, a large Counter display indicates the current 
sequence location in measures and beats. Clicking the SMPTE button 
changes the display to read out in timecode numbers. You can elect to have 
the sequence play by itself by using the Macintosh’s internal clock as a 
timing source, or you can click the Chase button to have the sequence s}m- 
chronize to an external source, like a VCR or tape deck, by using SMPTE 
timecode. The Start Time display lets you enter the timecode location 
where the music will begin plapng. SOUNDtraK also provides a Fade In 
option and a Fade Out option, which let you set the length, in seconds, of 
each fade. 



To fit your music to animation or other time-related presentations, 
SOUNDtraK provides adjustments for both playback and timing para- 
meters. The Edit Playback area lets you assign start and end points for your 
sequence along with a looped seaion if needed. The Edit Timing box lets 
you specify either a playback diuation (in seconds) or a tempo— expressed 
as a percentage of the original. The Truncate and Play to End buttons 
determine how the sequence will be handled. Play to End ensures that the 
entire sequence will be played. Truncate stops the music when you reach 
the specified duration. 

Changing a parameter in one of the Edit areas automatically changes the 
other related settings. For instance, if you change the duration, the tempo 
setting changes. If you change the length of the sequence, the duration 
changes. This makes fitting music to visuals easy, even for nonmusicians, 
because you can work with the parameters that best suit your needs. 

You can save the results of your SOUNDtraK editing sessions as separate 
files. The Export card provides buttons for including these files in any 
HyperCard stack. You have the option of exporting a button, along with 
the file, to initiate playback of your music, or you can choose to have the 
music begin when a specific card is opened. 

Because many SOUNDtraK users work in environments where other people 
will want access to the same library of music, the stack includes a Projea card. 
This allows several people to use and customize their SOUNDtraK libraries— 
by designating them as separate Projects— without destroying other people’s 
descriptions or settings. To complete the list of features, SOUNDtraK includes 
a Help stack that provides useful information about using the program. In 
addition to HyperCard, SOUNDtraK also works with SuperCard and 
MacroMind Direaor. 

SOUNDtraK has a lot to offer multimedia producers who use MIDI music 
with their presentations. The database features alone make it useful in main- 
taining an ever-growing collection of MIDI files. The MIDIclips library, with 
its audio-preview versions of the music, gives you the opportunity to get 
started with MIDI and HyperCard right away, and SOUNDtraK’s intuitive, 
graphical approach makes the process easy. 

HyperCard Meets MIDI 


I HyperMIDI 

HyperMIDI, from EarLevel Engineering, is a diflicult product to charac- 
terize. It’s not so much a specific application as it is a tool kit of powerful 
external commands (XCMDs) and external functions (XFCNs) that enable 
you to produce your own interactive MIDI stacks. These routines include 
utilities for manipulating MIDI data, for creating real-time MIDI controls, 
and for sending and receiving MIDI data. 

You can create almost any kind of MIDI-based stack from scratch, or you 
can start with the sample stacks provided and modify them to your liking. 
You might, for instance, create a MIDI-sequence recording and playback 
stack that could import and export Standard MIDI Files and run in the 
backgrotmd of a multimedia presentation. But this only scratches the sur- 
face. With HyperMIDI you can create your own editor/librarian stacks for 
your favorite sound module. Or you can invent your own real-time effeas 
processors, such as the Delay FX sample stack, which enables you to input 
a note and process it to produce an echo, a chord, or an arpeggio output. 
Another stack, a fractal music generator, creates sequences based on user- 
defined parameters that you apply to formulas, and the Algorithm stack 
(Figure 8.4) lets you set up musical criteria to create algorithmically gener- 
ated music. The Key Strummer stack (Figure 8.5) allows you to create 
guitar chords with an on-screen fingerboard that you can “strum” to play. 
Other stacks appropriately illustrate the range and potential of HyperMIDI 
for real-time processing, experimentation, and education. 

Unlike SOUNDtraK, however, HyperMIDI does have a bit of a learning 
curve. Although its creator, Nigel Redmon, states that you don’t need “a 
lifetime of programming experience” to use HyperMIDI, you do need at 
least some experience to explore this product in a meaningful way. For 
starters, it’s assumed that you have a working knowledge of HyperTalk 
(HyperCard’s programming language) and a good grasp of MIDI and how 
it works. It’s not altogether surprising, therefore, that the tutorial section in 
the owner’s manual doesn’t appear imtil Chapter 7— following much intro- 
ductory and background material. Nonetheless, the documentation is well 
written and achieves a good level of clarity and completeness. 



Figure 8.4 

The Algorithm 
stack lets you estab- 
lish musical criteria 
to create algorithmi- 
cally generated 

Figure 8.5 
HyperMIDFs Key 
Strummer stack lets 
you play an on- 
screen guitar. 

HyperCard Meets MIDI 


For those whose needs go beyond the limitations of SOUNDtraK and for 
those more advanced users interested in doing their own programming, 
H 3 T>erMIDI should provide enough power and flexibility to create a useful 
array of H 3 ^erCard-MIDI applications. 

I The Book of MIDI 

No discussion of HyperCard and MIDI would be complete without men- 
tioning The Book of MIDI, from Opcode Systems. This HyperCard stack 
makes learning the ins and outs of MIDI easy and entertaining. For begin- 
ners it includes basic information on the nature of MIDI and also provides 
diagrams to help you set up different MIDI systems— with or without a 

There are chapters that explain how MIDI works and others that answer 
questions about using MIDI. The chapter on hardware compares various 
synthesizers, past and present, and uses digitized soundfiles to let you hear 
them (Figure 8.6). The chapter covering software describes and illustrates 
the different kinds of MIDI programs on the market today and includes an 
animated demo of EZ Vision. MIDI neoph 5 ^es will enjoy setting up and 
playing Pachelbel’s Canon in D (Figure 8.7) to get a feel for using and 
adjusting MIDI files. 

For more advanced users. The Book of MIDI is a valuable reference source 
containing MIDI specifications, a glossary of computer music terminologj', 
a bibliography, and numerous context-sensitive references to articles and 
reviews. An excellent index and a nice collection of buttons make it easy to 
navigate this comprehensive stack, which has been assembled with a good 
dose of humor and a flair for entertaining animation. 

Listen to the soimds of classic synthesizers, test your knowledge of MIDI 
in the MIDI Game, or use your sound module to play and modify a MIDI 
file. There are many things to discover here in a program that is itself a 
model for wonderful, interactive HyperCard-MIDI programming. 



Figure 8.6 

The Book of MIDI 
describes famous 
synthesizers from 
the past and 
present. You can 
hear what they 
sound like by click- 
ing the ear icon. 


The Book of MIDI 

3: Classic Hardware : Synthesizers 


Thousands of keyboard players were inspired in 1971 by Keith Emerson's 
Minimoog solo at the end of “Lucky Man/' and the Minimoog became the lead 
synthesizer of choice for '70's rock keyboardists. Its unique sound came from 
the combination of electrical components and circuits that comprised 
the Minimoog. particularly the famous “patented Moog filter." The 
Minimoog is still much in demand for its synth bass lines. 

Figure 8.7 

After setting up 
and playing 
Pachelbefs Canon 
in D, you can try 
changing some of 
the playback para- 

4: MIDI Software: Multimedia 


’ile. J ^ 

We've recorded Pachelbel'j 
“Canon in D" in a MIDI File. « 

Set up your synths to receive on MIDI 
channels 2-7, as follows: 

Cello -ch.. 2 VioliTT 1 - ch . 5 

Harpsichord -cK. 3 VioliTr2-ch.6 
Pieracato strings -ch. 4 Violin 3 -ch. 7 

0 n 

Stert “Pachelbel" Stop •‘Paohelbel" 

(Harpsichord is 3 notes j all other are 1 note.) 

Then click on the “Start Pachelbel" 
button to hear the piece. 



he many benefits of using a MIDI system for multimedia sound production 
have encouraged a growing number of producers to explore this promising 
trend. Handling music and sound-effects reproduction outside of the com- 
puter reserves valuable disk-storage space for other memory-intensive aaiv- 
ities without sacrificing sound quality. The MIDI system itself can be as 
simple as a MIDI interface and a sound module or as elaborate as setups 
involving MIDI patchbays, effects devices, and numerous synthesizers and 

If you want to extend your musical horizons by expanding your available pal- 
ette of soimds, you have essentially two options: You can buy more synthesiz- 
ers, or you can change the internal sounds of the synths and modules that you 
own. If you like to keep your options open, a relatively new class of software 
addresses both of these situations— the universal editor/librarian, or edAib for 
short. Universal ed/libs, however, are definitely not for everyone, so to help 
illuminate this subject let’s examine some of the most popular of these prod- 
ucts; but first a little background. 

si How They Work 

Most MIDI instruments on the market today support MIDI System Ex- 
clusive (sys/ex) commands. This type of MIDI data provides access to the 
internal parameters that are specific to a given manufacturer’s instrument 



or family of instruments. Editor/librarian programs use system-exclusive 
messages to send and receive data involving the internal sounds in a partic- 
ular synthesizer and to modify, store, and reorganize these sounds. How- 
ever, different manufacturers handle sys/ex information in different ways, 
and different synthesizers have widely var 3 ung internal architectures, so in 
the past you needed a separate ed/lib program for each synthesizer in your 
setup. Switching between instalments was cumbersome, and if you added 
a new sound module to your system, you had to buy a new editor /librarian 
to access it. 

Universal ed/lib programs, on the other hand, are open-ended and designed 
to cover a wide range of MIDI devices. To accomplish this they employ a 
separate driver for every device that the ed/lib supports. Each driver then 
commimicates with the unique internal operating system and correspond- 
ing protocol of a given instrument. 

With an appropriate driver in place, the ed/lib program can exchange patches 
(sounds, or “presets”) between the computer and the MIDI device. The term 
patch goes back to the early days of electronic music studios when synthesizers 
consisted of separate modular components. Soimds were created by connecting 
the components with patch cords so that a specific configuration of knob set- 
tings and patch cords produced a specific sound called a “patch.” Although 
modem synthesizers no longer use patch cords to create their sounds, the term 
has stayed with us. Patches can be sent back and forth individually or as 
groups called banks. 

To edit your sounds you need an additional communication interface called 
a template. Templates are graphic representations of the controls and the 
edit parameters for specific synthesizers. They typically consist of a variety 
of buttons, sliders, knobs, graphs, and fields designed to reproduce visually 
the internal architecture of a synthesizer with the variables needed to mod- 
ify its sounds. 

Drivers and templates exist separately in some ed/libs while others link the 
two together to simplify installation and configuration procedures. Tem- 
plates vary considerably in layout and appearance from one ed/lib to the 

Universal Editor/Librarians 


next. Even within the same program, quality and fimaionality can vary 
since different programmers may be responsible for individual templates 
and different synthesizers lend themselves to the particular graphic formats 
with varying degrees of success. 

In any case, for a universal editor/librarian to be truly universal, there must 
be some provision for creating new drivers and templates. All of the prod- 
ucts mentioned below have that capability. This enables users and third- 
party developers to create custom templates and drivers for existing devices 
as well as future products. Writing your own drivers and templates, how- 
ever, is not for the faint of heart. You will need a good understanding of 
computer programming and MIDI system-exclusive code along with a fair 
dose of time and effort. For the rest of us, there are drivers available for 
downloading from several bulletin board services supported by the ed/lib 

By now it should be clear that these programs are both powerful and com- 
plex, and it therefore comes as little surprise that they can also be both con- 
fusing and frustrating to use. For starters, the installation procedures are not 
always as simple and straightforward as the manufacturers would like to 
believe, although these problems generally occur only in the initial setup 

Terminology is another possible source of confusion. To make these ed/libs 
generic in nature, the programmers have had to choose terms that can be 
applied in the broadest possible way to a widely varying group of devices. The 
result is that new terms are often invented and old terms redefined. The end 
user must then decipher this nomenclature and correlate it with the particular 
instruments in his or her MIDI system. 

Comparing products is similarly difficult since terms like patch, bank, and 
library can mean somewhat different things in different programs. If pos- 
sible, try to get a demo of the program before buying it to see if the design 
of the templates suits your taste and to see how intuitive the program seems 
for your setup. Generally speaking, these programs are not well suited to 
rank amateurs. As one company rep explained, they are not intended for 
beginners with little imderstanding of MIDI and how it works. 



^1 X-oR 

X-oR, from Dr. T’s Music Software, offers a niunber of powerful features 
that can help you organize, find, and edit your sounds whether you have a 
large, complex system or a much simpler setup. Its many operations are 
based on its Performance window (Figure 9.1), which lists the current 
patch data and soimd bank information for each S5mthesizer, soimd module, 
and MIDI device in your system. If you have a MIDI patchbay, its settings 
can also be included. 

Figure 9.1 

X-oR bases its 
many operations on 
the Performance 
window, which lists 
patch and sound 
bank data for each 




i Area 




ormance - 

Patch Name 




Emu Proteus 1 



Default Setup 

Initialized patch 


Emu Proteus 1 



- -Default- - 

Initialized patch 



Emu Proteus 1 

Prog. Map 


Initialized patch 


Emu Proteus 1 

Tune Tbl 


Initialized patch 


Roland MT-32 



Slap Bass 1 

Untitled ♦ 1 



Roland MT-32 



Str Sect 1 

Untitled-^ 2 


Roland MT-32 



Brs Sect 1 

Untitled 3 




Roland MT-32 



Sax 1 

Untitled 4 



Roland MT-32 



Ice Rain 

Untitled 5 



Roland MT-32 




Untitled ♦ 6 



Roland MT-32 




Untitled ^ 7 



Roland MT-32 



Ore he Hit 

Untitled ^ 8 

' . 



Roland MT-32 



Init Drumset 

Initialized patch 



Roland MT-32 



Init Patch 

Initialized patch 


Roland MT-32 



Init Timbr.Table 

Initialized patch 



Once you’ve entered the setup information, X-oR uses this “snapshot” of 
the system to re-create an entire MIDI configuration, including all settings, 
channel assignments, and relevant information each time you load that 
Performance File. From there you can open new sound bank files and initi- 
ate data transfers or begin an editing session by selecting an' appropriate 
driver/template combination called a Profile. If you have any trouble using 
a certain Profile, you can open the Profile Help window to get specific 
information about any device supported by X-oR. A Monitor window is 
also available to troubleshoot transmission problems while you send or 
receive data. 

X-oR allows any number of windows of any type to appear on the screen 
at one time, making it easy to switch between different libraries and data 

Universal Editor/Librarians 


banks. Once you have transferred a bank of patches from your MIDI device 
into X-oR, you can add any or all of the patches to a library file by dragging 
them to the appropriate Library window, where they can be listed in order 
by name or date. Libraries are simply collections of patches with the same 
type of data. They can hold virtually unlimited numbers of entries for stor- 
age and cross-referencing. 

X-oR boasts some truly outstanding features for organizing and searching 
through its libraries. Every entry in a Library window can have up to eight 
keywords associated with it. You can choose these quickly and easily from a 
number of pop-up menus designed around a flexible, hierarchal system. 

The selected keywords along with a descriptive comment appear opposite 
each patch name in a Library window to give you an overview of the 
sounds in each library (Figure 9.2). 

To locate a specific sound or type of sound, X-oR provides a sophisticated Fmd 
command, which lets you enter a combination of keywords, text, and logic to 
search all open libraries for patches that meet certain criteria (Figure 9.3). This 
full-featured, database approach to sound bank management makes X-oR 
worth considering if you have an extensive MIDI system and/or large numbers 
of patches to organize. 

Figure 9.2 
The Library win- 
dow lists patches by 
name, followed by a 
comment and/or up 
to eight keywords. 


■ : 




Date Comment 








11/21/91 breathy 






Brs Sect t 

11/21/91 i 







11/21/91 i 






Ice Rain 

11/21/91 ; cascading 





slow decay 

Orche Hit 

11/21/91 ; 

sound efx 


fast attk 

not sustaine 


Sax 1 

11/21/91 alto 





Ipitch bend 

Slap Bassi 

11/21/91 : 





pitch bend 

Str Sect 1 

11/21/91 iwith reverb 







9 patches 1 



To audition sounds from within the program, X-oR offers no less than 
four options. By selecting ScreenKeys from the Play menu, you can use 
your mouse to play notes from an on-screen keyboard (Figure 9.4), which 
responds to velocity information according to where you click each key 
front to back. Two sets of octave buttons let you selea the keyboard 
range. ScreenKeys will work even when it’s not the front window. 



Figure 9.3 

X-oR’s Find com- 
mand uses key- 
words and 
modifiers to estab- 
lish the criteria 
for a search. 

Figure 9.4 

ScreenKeys lets 
you audition 
sounds from an on- 
screen keyboard. 

PM • rind Patches • 



I find I Keywords: 


1 Rnd 


1 Or 


1 Ond 


1 Not 


1 Ond 


1 Rnd 

sloui decag 

1 Not 


[ Clear ) [[ Search ) 


S HiinriTT!rrj'*»;E£!5a'5jrsiirH5:“- 



1 by 

For more fim in triggering your MIDI devices, X-oR offers MousePlay. 
This option doesn’t use a keyboard; instead, the position of the mouse left 
to right determines which note is played, and the position top to bottom 
afferts the velocity. You trigger notes by pressing the Option key on the 
Macintosh keyboard. The MousePlay Preferences window lets you select 
whether typing the Option key will produce single notes or mouse- 
controlled glissandos, as well as which of 13 scales (major, minor, Hungar- 
ian, chromatic, whole tone, etc.) your triggered notes will adhere to. 

Moving the mouse with the Command key pressed turns it into a pitch- 
bend controller, with movements left or right bending notes up or down. 
Combining the Control key with the Option key lets you send one of sev- 
eral kinds of MIDI controller messages that you can also choose from the 
MousePlay Preferences window. 

If you prefer a more traditional approach to auditioning soimds, X-oR’s 
Echo function lets you play your MIDI keyboard controller to hear each 
patch. And finally, if you want a more musical and/or polyphonic context to 

Universal Editor/Librarians 


hear your sounds, you can play sequences from another program, through 
X-oR, by using Apple’s MIDI Manager. 

X-oR’s editing operations take place in the Patch Edit windows (Figure 9.5). 
These templates are very well designed, clear, and easy to use. The displays 
for many of the templates, however, take up more room than a single screen 
provides, so the additional display area must be accessed by scrolling— a 
minor annoyance. To help mitigate this problem, X-oR provides a Jump 
feature (in the lower-left comer of the window), which produces a small 
pop-up menu that you can use to “jump” to any part of the display. 

Figure 9.5 
X-oR’s templates 
are very clear and 
well designed. 



P4rl1 1 

«nvelop« mode 



struct 1-2 








struct 3-4 

1 :s+s 








PartTone: ElecPianol (edit) 

pulse wi'dih pern 
vidth veloc v/ave 

key follov 




bertder rw. 



synth vrave 







1 ; 





The Envelope Graphs let you quickly change envelope parameters by 
dragging little grab handles to change the envelope’s shape. There’s also an 
option for displaying the corresponding numerical values below each 
envelope’s graph. 



To eliminate patches with the same or similar parameter settings, X-oR 
provides a Compare Patches command on the Edit menu. This feature 
produces a detailed comparison list between any two patches to help you 
weed out duplicate soimds with or without the same names. 

As with the other programs, X-oR provides a function that takes certain 
parameters from existing patches and mixes them together to create new 
sounds. The Blend & Mingle command combines selected parameters from 
two source patches to create a new bank of sounds by interpolating values 
between the patches according to one of four different algorithms. A Ran- 
domize command also lets you generate a bank of new patches by ran- 
domly varying the parameters of a single patch. 

If you are interested in creating custom drivers and templates, you will 
need a separate “Profile Development System” called E-oR. The owner’s 
manual warns that E-oR is definitely not for the “casual user” and requires 
substantial knowledge of computer programming and MIDI sys-ex data. 

X-oR is a nicely designed and intuitive program. The owner’s manual, 
except for a very weak index, is likewise excellent. The clearly written docu- 
mentation offers plenty of help for getting started and for troubleshooting 
problems. Dr. T’s also provides BBS support and new Profiles on GEnie. 

SI Galaxy Plus Editors 

Galaxy Plus Editors (Opcode Systems, Inc.) combines the universal librarian 
features of the original Galaxy (still available) with the many excellent dedi- 
cated editors that Opcode has produced for the Macintosh during the past few 
years. The result is a powerful, feature-laden program offering flexibility, 
online help, and an excellent look and feel. 

Galaxy Plus Editors comes packaged with Opcode MIDI System (OMS), a 
Mac system extension (INIT) that provides an environment allowing multi- 
ple MIDI applications to run concurrently. OMS incorporates a setup ap- 
plication that enables you to store information about your MIDI system 
configuration, which it supplies to each of your OMS-compatible MIDI 
programs (such as Vision). The OMS Setup display resembles an Apple 

Universal Editor/Librarians 


MIDI Manager window, with various devices (shown as icons) connected 
by “cables” representing the signal path and direction (Figure 9.6). 

OMS is designed to be either an alternative to MIDI Manager or an 
adjunct to it, depending on the requirements of the programs in use. 

Unlike MIDI Manager, OMS does not slow down your computer, but 
neither does it manage timing information or allow interapplication com- 
munication. The OMS Setup procedure for Galaxy is longer and more 
labyrinthian than the other ed/lib setups, but the abundant and well-written 
documentation should get you through the process without a hitch. To in- 
stall Galaxy itself. Opcode provides an Easy Configuration feature, which 
finds and installs the appropriate drivers and templates automatically 
and painlessly. 

Figure 9.6 
The OMS Setup 
display uses icons 
to represent the 
instruments and 
connections in your 
MIDI system. 


OMS Setup ^ L © 



Std. In1«rfdc*, Modem 

y«rrv»h4 KX-88 
Proteus 1 

Ei Round MT-32 
^ Std Interface, Printer 
> Kavai Mr 

To begin working in Galaxy, you first open a Bundle window, which can 
contain different types of patch banks from different types of instruments 
(Figure 9.7). Once you select a particular patch bank, the exchange of 
data can occur in much the same way as in the other ed/lib programs. You 
can change names and create libraries by using the usual Cut, Copy and 
Paste commands. 

Like X-oR, Galaxy boasts a wealth of powerful searching and organizing 
functions, which are centered on names, keywords, and comments that you 
can attach to any patch for describing its characteristics. The General Find 
dialog box lets you type any word, or part of a word, which Galaxy uses to 
search through any open Bank, Library, or Bundle window. If the specified 
text appears in the name, keyword, or comments for a patch, it becomes 



Figure 9.7 

Galaxy’s Bundle 
window can contain 
difTerent types of 
patch banks from 
different instruments. 

highlighted in the window where it’s found. The Find Again command 
lets you continue the search. 

For a much more sophisticated option, you can use the Specific Find dialog 
box to indicate separate text entries for names and comments. Ke 3 twords 
are selected using a hierarchal, menu-based approach similar to that in X-oR 
(Figure 9.8). Highlighting an entry in the Categories column generates a 
list of available options in the Keywords menu. Keywords selected here are 
then added to the Find list on the right until an appropriate number of 
keywords are shown to narrow the search. You can further alter the scope of 
the search by adding And and Or after each entry or adding Not before 
seleaed ke 3 ^ords. Complex keyword-combinations can further be saved as 
macros so that you can apply often-used search specifications without tedi- 
ous reentry. Galaxy also gives you the option of cutting or copying the 
patches as they’re found and pasting them into another window to create 
a new library. 

Both Galaxy and X-oR let you customize your lists of categories and key- 
words, and Galaxy also offers a function that searches for patches with 

Universal Editor/Librarians 


Figure 9.8 

Galaxy’s Specific 
Find dialog box lets 
you search for 
patches using 
numerous keywords 
chosen from several 
categories. Modify- 
ing words help 
narrow the search. 

Figure 9.9 

Galaxy lets you 
audition sounds by 
playing notes from 
an on-screen 




MIDI Controls 


II Hrpeggio 

r^>3— I 

String Section 


Musical Style 

II Backwards 


I Rmu I 




Bowed ■ 





I Rll>» I 









I Cancel | 

Large Ensemble 




Ok ii 





Jl OK J 



Sound Effects 


Fast Attack 








Uery Realistic 








not Lush 


Tone Color 


not Distorted 







I and J( or J| 

not I 




Saue... ]( Clear 


duplicate parameter information to eliminate redundant patches with differ- 
ent names. Many synthesizers use patches that derive some of their para- 
meters from other patches. To avoid losing this shared parameter data when 
moving patches from one location to another. Galaxy provides a useful 
Attached Patch feature, which keeps track of these related entries and 
moves them together to maintain the necessary parameter references 
when you reorganize your sounds. 

The sound-auditioning section of Galaxy offers both a sequencer and a 
mouse-triggering option. To use the mouse feature, you open the Mouse- 
Keys window (Figure 9.9), where an on-screen keyboard allows you to play 
notes by clicking on the appropriate keys. The location of the cursor front 
to back on each key determines volume, and the range of the keyboard can 
be shifted up or down by octaves. If you prefer, you can use the Macintosh 
keyboard to trigger sounds with its velocity set from the MouseKeys win- 
dow as well. 

[fiD= MouseKeys ^ k^I 64 |kv[I 

□ I Lazy Key: 

s Repeat go 

□ HuUi I 




For those circumstances where a sequence playback would be preferable. 
Galaxy provides the option of recording and saving a small sequence that 
will play when chosen, or automatically when you select a patch— very 
useful for reviewing banks of sounds. To extend its sequencer option even 
further. Galaxy also allows you to play back prerecorded sequences stored 
as Standard MIDI Files. This means that sequences recorded in other pro- 
grams can be imported into Galaxy for patch-auditioning purposes. Of 
course, as with the other ed/libs, you can always use an external MIDI 
keyboard to audition patches. 

Galaxy’s editing templates (Figure 9.10) are designed and implemented 
extremely well. The layout is very clear, with excellent detail. The envelope 
graphs appear initially in miniature giving a general view of the envelope 
shape, but clicking on one brings up a matrix of numbers showing all of the 
parameter settings for quick adjustment by keyboard or mouse. Another 
click and the miniature graph becomes a much larger window, with grab 
boxes to change the envelope’s shape by dragging with the mouse. The use 
of these and other types of pop-up windows enables Galaxy to display the 
entire main editing template on a single screen, thereby eliminating the 
need for scrolling or page turning. This, in turn, creates a more efficient 
work environment. 

Figure 9.10 

Galaxy's templates 
fit a lot of informa- 
tion on a single 
screen without 
losing clarity. Click- 
ing on a miniature 
envelope graph 
produces a larger 
window with grab 
handles for chang- 
ing the envelope’s 

Universal Editor/Librarians 


As might be expeaed. Galaxy also offers several means of generating new 
patches from old. Options include Constrained Random (random genera- 
tion with parameter limits). Shade Two (gradual transitions between two 
patches), and Shuffler (totally random combinations). Each option can gen- 
erate a new bank of any specified number of patches. 

If you’re interested in creating custom drivers and templates. Galaxy 
includes PatchTalk, its programming language. This is intended for those 
with a working knowledge of programming and MIDI system-exclusive 
code. The documentation is clear and well written, and there are several 
examples of custom modules included with Galaxy. 

Finally, the owner’s manual must be mentioned. In short, it is outstand- 
ing. It is lucid, complete, organized, and filled with helpful illustrations and 
tutorials. This is an excellent example of thoughtful and well-designed 

I MIDI Quest 

MIDI Quest, from Sound Quest, Inc., offers yet another approach to orga- 
nizing and editing your instrument sounds. It has variations on many of the 
options found in other ed/lib programs along with a few intriguing features 
of its own. 

After a rather convoluted decompression/installation procedure, you begin 
the program by building a Driver List. The Driver List window that 
emerges (Figure 9.1 1) has entries for each instrument in your system along 
with the appropriate settings. Selecting a driver from the Driver List win- 
dow and clicking on the Edit button loads a bank of patches into the com- 
puter, where it appears in a Bank Editor window. This window lets you 
display, organize, and name your sounds. You can exchange patches with 
other windows by using commands such as Cut, Copy, Paste, Swap, 
and Delete. 

MIDI Quest offers three ways to generate new sounds from the patches in 
a Bank Editor window: Mbc randomly selects parameters from two differ- 
ent patches, Blend randomly combines large parts of two patches, and Mix 


] 162 

Figure 9.11 

MIDI Quest’s 
Driver List window 
displays the instru- 
ments in your 
system along with 
their settings. 

All randomly selects parameters from several patches. In all cases, a new 
bank is created containing the resulting sounds. This approach to patch 
generation doesn’t offer the same level of control and flexibility as in the 
other ed/libs but may still yield some worthwhile results. 

For collecting and organizing your patches into larger groups, MIDI 
Quest provides a good array of librarian functions, centered on its Library 
window. You can easily drag patches from the Bank Editor windows into 
the Library window to create a master list of sounds or other types of data 
for each instrument in your system. Once it appears in the library, a patch 
can have a keyword and a comment attached to it, and the library can then 
sort your sounds alphabetically by name, keyword, or comment. 

The Choose command opens a display within the Library window that 
provides several useful options for searching through your lists of soimds 
(Figure 9.12). MIDI Quest lets you launch a general search of the library to 
locate duplicate patches with or without the same names. You can also 
search for patches with similar parameter settings based on a selectable 
“percentage of similarity.” Additionally, you can locate patches by 
specifying a name or keyword. 

To shorten the search time, the Use Select command lets you choose a 
patch in advance with which the various criteria will be compared. The 
And button ensures that only patches meeting all of the selected criteria 
will be chosen, while the Or button allows selection based on any one of the 

Universal Editor/Librarians 


Figure 9.12 

The Choose com- 
mand in MIDI 
Quest offers several 
useful options for 
locating patches. 

criteria. The Library window also offers a Mix All command to generate a 
new library of 32 sounds by randomly picking parameters from several 
seleaed patches. 

MIDI Quest’s Sound Checker feature offers a number of excellent ways to 
audition your sounds. The MIDI Sequencer window (Figure 9.13) lets you 
import Standard MIDI Files to play while you edit your sounds or try out 
other patches. You can load up to 10 different sequences into the MIDI 
Sequencer window, which provides 10 buttons for file seleaion and 16 
additional buttons for disabling any MIDI channel during playback. Tempo 
can also be adjusted and the Loop button lets you set the sequence to 

To view MIDI activity at either your MIDI In or Out port, MIDI Quest 
includes a MIDI Monitor window (Figure 9.14), which displays MIDI data 
graphically or in text form. If you choose not to use a Standard MIDI File 

Figure 9.13 

Sequencer window 
lets you store and 
play up to ten 
Standard MIDI 
Files for audition- 
ing your sounds. 



to test your sounds, you can use the Tones window to create a chord or 
sequence of up to 16 notes, which can be triggered from any window. You 
can also use the MIDI Controller window to generate several types of 
MIDI messages, including Aftertouch, Program Change, Poly Pressure, 
and Pitch Bend. 

Figure 9.14 

The MIDI Moni- 
ir window displays 
MIDI activity 
graphically or in 
text form. 

Editing activities take place in MIDI Quest’s Patch Editor windows (Fig- 
ure 9.15). These templates are not always as clean or visually well designed 
as those in the ed/libs mentioned above, but they provide a satisfaaory 
environment for quickly adjusting parameters to fine-tune your patches or 
to create new sounds. Many of the templates require more than one screen 
to accommodate their displays, so you’ll have to use the scroll bars or the 
“jump” buttons in the lower-right corner to access the additional 

MIDI Quest’s Data Base feature lets you store information from the differ- 
ent instruments in your system so that you can save a “snapshot” of your 
device settings. Several Data Bases can be displayed simultaneously and any 
one can be used to reconfigure your entire MIDI system in a single step. 

For the more technically minded users, MIDI Quest provides the Driver 
Creator window. This utility lets you write your own drivers for instru- 
ments that are not already supported. Newly created drivers can then be 

Universal Editor/Librarians 


Figure 9.15 
Editing activities 
take place in MIDI 
Quest’s Patch 
Editor windows. 

added to the Driver List window. Sound Quest does not include informa- 
tion on the use of the Driver Creator window but does offer doaunen- 
tation through its BBS. 

MIDI Quest has several features that make it worth considering. Although 
its templates are a bit coarser-looking than its competition and may require 
much scrolling or page turning, other aspects of the program are stronger. 
The Sound Checker features are noteworthy. The ability to import and 
access up to ten different MIDI files and to monitor MIDI activity during 
playback are especially appealing. The online help and the useful search, 
sort, and compare options add to the program’s strength. The documenta- 
tion is concise but occasionally confusing, and it suffers further from the 
lack of an index. 

SI Final Thoughts 

Of the programs covered in this chapter, the strongest contenders are 
clearly Galaxy Plus Editors and X-oR. These two ed/libs combine powerful 



features, excellent graphics, and well-written documentation. MIDI Quest 
is very close behind with several good features to recommend it. 

During the past few years there has been an ongoing trend by synthesizer 
manufacturers to produce devices with fewer and fewer front panel con- 
trols. The inevitable result of this trend can clearly be seen in Roland’s 
CM- 32 L sound module, which has virtually no controls except a power 
switch and a volume knob. Many hardware companies now assume that 
anyone interested in serious sound designing will use an ed/lib program of 
some kind, but the landscape of MIDI hardware devices changes constantly 
along with the requirements of multimedia music producers. All of the 
programs above are powerful and refined enough to tackle today’s archiving 
and editing problems while still leaving the door open to embrace future 
produas and developments. 


An Introduction to 
Digital Audio 


ith the tremendous success of the compaa disc, the burgeoning demand for 
DAT (digital audiotape) recorders and the myriad new computer-based 
RAM and hard-disk recording systems, the future of digital audio has by 
now been very well established. When you go shopping for hardware and 
software, though, you’ll inevitably find yourself facing a confusing array of 
specifications involving varying costs, memory requirements, and cryptic 
claims for performance. An understanding of the digital audio process is, 
therefore, essential to assess your needs and to evaluate the plethora of new 
products entering the marketplace. If you’re a digital audio novice, this 
introduaion (though it gets a little technical) should provide some basic 
information that can help you grapple with the new terminology that you’ll 
certainly encounter. To keep from drifting too far afield. I’m assuming that 
you have a basic understanding of simple audio concepts so that I can focus 
on the world of digits, disks, and dynamics, and the new concepts brought 
by this exciting technology. 

si The Analog World 

From the beginning, and for the past several decades, recording techniques 
have involved analog procedures. The typical process is straightforward and 
relatively simple: Sound waves impinging on a microphone get converted 
into continuously fluctuating voltages that, by way of the record head, 
become stored on tape as patterns of magnetization. The changing signal 



and the resultant magnetic patterns are directly analogous to the original 
sound waves. In other words, an increase in sound level produces a corres- 
ponding increase in voltage and it’s this analog that you preserve on tape. 
Playback takes place when you reverse the process so that the fluctuating 
voltages produce sound waves after passing through an amplifier and speakers. 
The analog relationship is thereby preserved throughout the procedure. 

51 The Digital Domain 

In the past five years, as computer components have gained in speed and 
power, digital audio has become a viable alternative in both the professional 
and consumer markets. Simply stated, digital audio describes a method of 
recording that takes sound waves and converts them into numbers, which you 
can then store as data in a variety of media, including hard disks, compact 
discs, digital audiotape, and computer RAM. In addition to the potential for 
greatly improved sound quality, digital recording offers a quantum-leap im- 
provement in the areas of editing capability, signal processing, mixing, and 
networking. In short, it brings a new level of power and flexibility to the 
recording process, which does not exist in the world of analog tape recording. 

To begin understanding digital audio, you must first realize that sound 
consists of two elements: amplitude (level) and frequency (events over 
time). In digital audio these elements are addressed through quantization 
and sampling, respectively. Now let’s examine in greater detail the impor- 
tant roles of these fundamental processes. 

S Sound into Numbers 

The digital recording chain begins in the analog world with sound waves 
reaching a microphone, which converts them into fluctuating voltages. 

This analog signal reaches the sample-and-hold ciraiity which grabs and 
freezes the signal momentarily as a discreet voltage whose measurement 
represents a snapshot, at a specific point in time, of the continuously fluctu- 
ating voltage. The sample-and-hold circuit has the responsibility of retain- 
ing each snapshot just long enough for the next component in the chain. 

An Introduction to Digital Audio 


the analog-to-digital convertevy to do its work. The A/D converter obtains 
each voltage reading from the sample-and-hold circuit, evaluates it, and 
outputs a series of numbers (I’s and O’s), which represents the amplitude of 
the signal for that precise moment in time. Once done, the sample-and-hold 
circuit releases its grip and the process begins again— tens of thousands of 
times each second. The number of times per second this conversion process 
occurs is called the sampling rate. As you’ll see, it’s an important faaor in 
evaluating digital audio hardware. 


The process above by which fluctuating electricity, representing sound 
waves, gets converted into a series of number values is called quantization. 
This term refers to the amplitude component of digital audio recording. 

The A/D converter after receiving each voltage reading outputs a series of 
binary numbers (bits) that represent the signal amplitude at that moment. 
These bits are grouped into “words,” and the sizes of the words determines 
the number of quantization levels available to represent the incoming volt- 
ages. Since larger words can carry more information, they consequently 
allow for greater resolution. Common word sizes include 8-bit, 12-bit, and 
16-bit. MacRecorder and other similar voice digitizers typically provide 
8-bit resolution, while compact discs, DAT recorders, and most professional- 
level products, like Digidesign’s Audiomedia card, incorporate 16-bit 

Every time another bit is added to a word the number of available combina- 
tions that can represent the incoming signal levels is increased by a factor of 
two. This means that an 8-bit number has 2 to the 8th power (256) discreet 
values possible. A 12-bit number has 2 to the 12th power (4096) combina- 
tions, and a 16-bit number has 2 to the 16th power or 65,536 possible 
values! The greater the number of combinations there are, the finer the 
resolution will be and the less inaccuracy will occur. This results in a lower 
degree of quantization noise— a type of distortion occurring when the digi- 
tally represented waveform does not accurately match the original analog 
signal. Additionally, a higher resolution produces a wider dynamic range. 
This is the difference, expressed in decibels, between the loudest and the 
quietest possible audio levels of a recording. 



Sampling Rate 

So far we’ve focused on the amplitude component of an audio signal. Now 
let’s examine the matter of frequency response in a digital system. As men- 
tioned above, the sampling rate is the number of times per second that the 
digital audio circuitry examines and converts the incoming voltages. Logi- 
cally, the lower audio frequencies, with their larger cycles and slower 
changes, can be represented reasonably well with fewer samples per second 
than the higher frequencies, with their small, rapidly changing patterns. 
Therefore, the greater the sampling rate, the greater the available range of 
frequencies, or bandwidth^ that the digital recorder can handle adequately. 

To represent a given signal with any accuracy, the digital circuitry must 
obtain a minimum of two samples for each audio cycle so that both the 
positive and negative motion of the waveform can be represented (Fig- 
me 10.1). If the signal isn’t sampled at least twice during each cycle, the 
resulting numbers will appear to represent a frequency that is much lower 
than the actual frequency being examined (Figure 10.2). This imwanted 
variant of the original tone is called an alias frequency, and its appearance 
in the audio chain is referred to as aliasing. 

Figure 10.1 

The digital cir- 
cuitry must obtain 
at least two samples 
per audio cycle so 
that both the positive 
and negative parts of 
the waveform can be 

To avoid this type of harmonic distortion, you must adhere to the restric- 
tions of the Nyquist theorem, which states that the sample rate must be at 
least twice as high as the highest frequency recorded. In other words, the 
highest frequency that you can record without aliasing will be one-half of 
the sample rate— a limit known as the Nyquist frequency. 

An Introduction to Digital Audio 


Figure 10.2 
Aliasing occurs 
when too few 
samples are taken to 
describe the audio 
signal accurately. 

To ensure that frequencies beyond the Nyquist limit do not enter the 
recording chain, a low-pass filler with a steep cutoff slope, often referred to 
as an anti-aliasing filter, is placed just before the sample-and-hold circuit 
(Figure 10.3). Customarily, the cutoff frequency of this input filter is set 
slightly lower than the Nyquist limit to provide a guard band so that, in 
practice, the upper frequency response is not quite half of the sampling 
rate. Compact discs use a sampling frequency of 44.1 kHz, and DAT 
recorders typically incorporate a rate of 48 kHz. It’s clear that in both cases 
you’ll have ample room to acciuately reproduce the full audio bandwidth of 
20 Hz-20 kHz. 

Westward Ho! 

Digital audio recording and filmmaking share many similarities. Films are 
made when a movie camera “samples” the world at a rate of 24 frames per 
second. Even though in real life there are no such things as frames per 
second, the action on screen appears natural because the sampling rate is 
high enough to fool our eyes. Occasionally, an event on screen reminds us 
that we are watching a sampled reproduction of life. Such is the case with 
the well-known “wagon wheel” effect, which most people have noticed 
while watching old westerns. Even though the on-screen wagon is clearly 
moving and the wheels are turning, the spokes appear to be stationary (or 
sometimes even turning backward). This is an example of aliasing. In this 
case the sampling rate of the camera is too slow to represent accurately the 
forward rotation of the wagon spokes. If the spokes keep arriving at the 
same position each time the camera shutter opens, the movie will include 
the confusing alias image of the nonmoving wheel along with the other 



Figure 10.3 

The basic compo- 
nents of a digital 
audio system 



images of movement. The visual sampling frequency is, therefore, insufFi- 
cient to reproduce convincingly the real-life aaion. In a like manner, 
unwanted, spurious tones may appear in a digital recording if the sampling 
rate doesn’t prove sufficient for the program material or other steps aren’t 
taken to eliminate aliasing. 

31 Playback 

As might be expected, the digital audio playback process simply reverses 
(more or less) the recording process. The digital numbers are output from 
storage to a digital-to-analog converter, which, logically, transforms the digital 
“words” back into voltages. The analog signal then encounters an output 
sample-and-hold circuit, which produces a more stable and regular output. 
The reconstructed analog voltages next pass through an output low-pass 
filter, which eliminates the unwanted, additional high frequencies that 
result from the conversion process. This final component performs an 
important function since it must smooth out the irregularities created by 

An Introduction to Digital Audio 


the digital circuitry and, therefore, will determine the quaUty of the end 
result. The analog signal, by now, should very closely resemble the original 
fluctuating voltages that began the process, and you can finally send it to an 
audio amplifier and speakers for listening. 

Digital audio recording eliminates many of the problems, such as tape 
noise, that have plagued similar analog processes for many years. Its most 
important aspect, however, lies in the fact that, once an audio signal enters 
the digital domain, you can subject it to an astounding array of editing 
capabilities never before possible. In the following chapters we’ll examine 
some of the hardware/software products that provide this editing power 
and enable you to incorporate this new technology into multimedia 


(•) 1 Octaue O 2 Octaues 


mttn voce 

Digital Audio 

for the Masses (8-Bit) 

early every presentation can benefit from the addition of sound, and MIDI 
goes a long way to fill that potential. But MIDI isn’t always well suited to 
every kind of audio requirement. Some things, especially narration (and 
even some kinds of music), are better handled with digital audio. The prod- 
ucts covered in this chapter all have several things going for them: They’re 
inexpensive, their recordings can be distributed with disk-based presenta- 
tions, they don’t need additional hardware for playback, and they work 
with any model of Macintosh from a Plus on up. In other words, they offer 
imiversal digital audio for the Mac user on the street. 

51 MacRecorder 

It seems like MacRecorder (from MacroMind/Paracomp) has been around 
as long as the Macintosh itself. True, the Mac has always been able to pro- 
duce digitized soimds, but when Farallon Computing first released Mac- 
Recorder in January 1988, the whole world began to tap into this addicting 
capability. Soon bulletin boards everywhere were sprouting lists of sotmd 
effects, music clips, and pithy quotes from favorite movies to enliven our 
everyday computing tasks. Business users discovered that less “off-the- 
wall” sounds could improve communications, and finally Apple took the 
next logical, evolutionary step and included digitizing hardware and soft- 
ware in its Mac LC, Ilsi, Classic II, and Quadra models. Today, 



MacRecorder is still the most popular product on the market for adding 
digitized sounds to desktop presentations and low-budget multimedia. 

The MacRecorder Sound System consists of a hardware/software combina- 
tion that includes a sound digitizer and three applications. SoundEdit lets 
you record, edit, process, play, and store sounds. HyperSound is a stack 
that you can use to record and play sounds in HyperCard. And a second 
stack, the HyperSound Toolkit, contains external commands and funaions 
that enable you to record and play sounds from any stack. 

The MacRecorder digitizer— a little larger than a pack of cigarettes— plugs 
into the Mac’s modem or printer port. It has a small built-in, omnidirec- 
tional microphone and a line-level input jack for recording from a radio, 
tape deck, or CD player. If you prefer your own microphone, MacRecorder 
provides a second minijack for an external mic input. On the side, a small 
thumb wheel lets you adjust the input for setting proper recording levels. 

MacRecorder defaults to a record mode with 8-bit resolution and a 22-kHz 
sampling rate. Its anti-aliasing filter eliminates frequencies over 1 1 kHz, so 
from a praaical standpoint you can capture frequencies up to about 10 kHz 
with reasonable accuracy. It has a d 3 mamic range of 48 db. With these set- 
tings, you can store approximately 45 seconds of monaural soimd per mega- 
byte of memory. If you have a second digitizer, you can plug both into your 
Macintosh and record in stereo. This, of course, requires twice as much 

To fit more sound into less memory, MacRecorder provides two methods of 
altering sounds: downsampling and compressing. A downsampled sound is 
one that has been recorded at or converted to one of three lower sampling 
rates: 1 1, 7, or 5 kHz. An 1 1-kHz sound, for example, requires half the 
memory of the same recording at 22 kHz. It also reduces the frequency 
response and sound quality. A compressed sotmd also requires less memory, 
but achieves this reduction by storing the sound using less than 8-bit resolu- 
tion. Although this doesn’t reduce the frequency response in quite the same 
way that downsampling does, it still noticeably degrades sound quality. 
SoundEdit and H 3 q)erSound support compression ratios of 8:1, 6:1, 4:1, 
and 3:1, with each ratio expressing a comparison between the size of a com- 
pressed sound and its normal-size equivalent. 

Digital Audio for the Masses (8-Bit) 



At the heart of MacRecorder, the SoundEdit application provides an 
impressive number of features for recording, displaying, and editing 
sounds. To begin recording you first open the SoundEdit window (Fig- 
ure 11.1), which provides a large area for displaying waveforms. A wave- 
form is a two-dimensional representation of a sound, with amplitude indi- 
cated along the vertical axis and time shown along the horizontal. The 
Display Options command lets you choose whether the waveform appears 
as a series of dots or vertical lines. Beneath the waveform display, several 
buttons enable (from left to right) recording, playing, zooming in or out, 
monitoring input levels, and showing the Spearum Analysis display. To the 
right of these buttons, six variable-mode “report boxes” give information 
about the waveform or a selected region within it. 

Figure 11.1 

SoundEdit window 
shows your record- 
ing as a waveform 

Before you start recording, it’s a good idea to check your input levels to 
establish an optimum setting. Clicking on the Input Level button starts the 
input level test. Speaking into the microphone (or starting playback from an 
external source) produces a real-time waveform display that lets you see the 
sounds you’re making. Ideally, the loudest sounds should nearly fill the 
display from top to bottom. Proper level setting is critical in digital record- 
ing since a waveform that is too narrow will not only sound too soft when 
recorded but will also produce an unnecessary amount of quantization noise 
(Figure 1 1.2). If you record the waveform at too high a level, the tops and 
bottoms of the waveform peaks will get cut off— a characteristic known as 
“clipping”— and the recording will be distorted (Figure 1 1 .3). 



Figure 11.2 

This sound was 
recorded at too low 
a level. It will have 
an unnecessary 
amount of quantiza- 
tion noise. 

Figure 11.3 

This sound was 
recorded at too high 
a level. It will have 
distortion from 

To obtain the proper input level, you can adjust the microphone placement 
or turn the input-level thumb wheel on the side of the digitizer until the 
waveform looks right. Once you’ve set your level, recording is easy. Just 
click the Record button to start and click the mouse to stop. Your recording 
will then appear in the waveform display, where you can play back the 
entire soundfile or any selected portion of it. Clicking and dragging through 
a pan of the waveform seleas a region for editing, and you can then subject 
it to the usual Cut, Copy, Paste, and Delete commands, along with labeling 
and color identification options and a multitude of digital effects. 

Three of the effects don’t require any recording since they generate sounds 
themselves. You can mix together the results to create new sounds and use 
them alone or paste them into other recordings. The Noise command gen- 
erates “white noise,” which resembles static from a radio or television. The 

Digital Audio for the Masses (8-Bit) 


Tone Generator produces three types of waveforms— sine wave, square 
wave, and sawtooth wave— each with its own charaaeristic sound. Once 
you selea the wave type, you can specify the frequency, amplitude, and 
duration. The FM Synthesis effect allows you to turn MacRecorder into a 
simple synthesizer that creates sounds through the interaction of one fre- 
quency with another, as determined by a number of variables. 

MacRecorder lets you apply one or more of 1 1 effects to modify any non- 
compressed waveform or selected portion. Amplify increases the amplitude 
of a selected region; Backwards plays it in reverse. The Smooth effect 
removes harsh-soimding upper frequencies and noise by simulating a low- 
pass filter, and the Flanger effea adds a whooshing sound like a jet plane to 
selected regions. The Echo effect simulates a digital delay device to gener- 
ate a repeating soimd that decays over time like the echoes you hear when 
you yell into a canyon. You can adjust both the delay time, in fractions of a 
second, and the echo strength, which determines how quickly the repeti- 
tions die away. MacRecorder provides a time-scaUng feature in its Tempo 
effect, which changes the playback speed of a sound without altering its 
pitch. Selecting Speed Up from the dialog box doubles the speed and Slow 
Down halves it. Using Tempo is most useful for extending or shortening 
seaions of dialog in a presentation. 

Two of MacRecorder’s effeas apply only to stereo recordings. The Ping 
Pong effect creates the illusion that a sound is moving from left to right or 
vice versa by gradually interchanging the amplitudes of the left and right 
channels (Figure 11.4). The Swap Channels effea simply exchanges the 
right and left channels as long as they are the same length. 

Figure 11.4 
With Mac- 
Recorder’s Ping 
Pong effect, you 
can create the 
illusion that a 
sound is moving 
from left to right or 
vice versa. 



MacRecorder also provides an easy yet powerful way to create envelopes 
for your sounds. The Envelope effect lets you determine the amplitude of a 
sound by an amount that can vary over time. Choosing Envelope from the 
Effeas menu superimposes an “amplitude adjustment line” over the 
seleaed waveform area (Figure 1 1.5). Clicking anywhere on the line creates 
a handle that you can drag up or down to increase or decrease the wave- 
form’s amplitude. In appearance, these envelopes resemble those described 
in Chapter 9, except that here you can choose how many handles to create 
and where. This enables you to quickly produce any kinds of fade-in or 
fade-out effects as well as more complex envelope shapes. 

Figure 11.5 
The Envelope 
effect lets you vary 
sound’s amplitude 
over time. 

The Bender effect works the same as the Envelope effect, only here you 
adjust the pitch of a sound over time. The “pitch adjustment line” works 
the same way as its amplitude counterpart, letting you create handles any- 
where along the line and drag them to new locations (Figure 1 1.6). Drag- 
ging the line upward raises the pitch and dragging it downward lowers the 
pitch. This produces an effect much like using the pitch-bend wheel on a 
synthesizer. MacRecorder allows you to choose between a one- or two- 
octave range above and below the zero line. 

The Filter effect is one of MacRecorder’s most useful features. It looks and 
acts much like the graphic equalizers common on many home stereo sys- 
tems, with sliders adjusting the amplitudes of different frequency bands 
(Figure 1 1.7). This equalizer, however, lets you drag the dividers between 

Digital Audio for the Masses (8-Bit) 


Figure 11.6 

The Bender effect 
lets you vary a 
sound’s pitch 
over time. 

its five frequency bands to the right or left to change the frequency ranges 
affected by its sliders. This makes it function more like an on-screen para- 
metric equalizer, with amplitude along the vertical axis and frequency along 
the horizontal axis. 

Of course, no digitizing program would be complete without reverb, and 
MacRecorder’s Reverb effect comes in four flavors: Empty Room, Concert 
Hall, Stadium, and Outer Space. You can apply reverb to the entire wave- 
form or to any seleaed portion, in case you want to emphasize a single 
word in a narration, for instance. 

Figure 11.7 

Filter effect com- 
bines the best 
features of a 
graphic and para- 
metric equalizer. 



Looping is another essential feature in a digital editing program. MacRe- 
corder’s Loopback option lets you repeat any selected region over and over 
to extend its duration without requiring additional memory. Used often in 
music applications, looping lets you create sustained sounds from short 
segments. This works well with certain kinds of sound effects and musical 
instrument tones, but you can also put it to good use with spoken words 
and even entire musical passages. And speaking of music, there’s also a Set 
Pitches command, which allows you to raise or lower the playback pitch of 
a recording in half-step increments. 

In addition to the waveform itself, MacRecorder provides three other dis- 
plays for viewing your sounds. Clicking the Spectrum Analysis button 
produces a real-time graph showing the different frequencies reaching the 
computer through the microphone (Figure 1 1.8). This can help you decide 
if you’re using the best sampling rate for the sound source. 

Figure 11,8 

provides a real-time 
Spectrum Analysis 
display which lets 
you view the incom- 
ing frequencies. 

If you’re using a Mac that supports color QuickDraw, you can use the 
Sonogram effea to show a map of the relative strengths of the frequencies 
in your recording (Figure 1 1 .9). The Sonogram represents frequencies in 
16 colors or gray scales, based on relative strength, on a two-dimensional 
graph showing frequency and time. 

The Spectrogram effect also shows the relative strengths of frequencies in a 
recording, only this time the frequencies are represented in a series of two- 
dimensional graphs (Figure 1 1.10). The vertical axis indicates the power in 
decibels, and the horizontal axis indicates the frequencies. Each graph in 
the series represents a different time interval. You can use this map to 
examine the frequency content of a sound and how it changes over time. 

Digital Audio for the Masses (8-Bit) 


Figure 11.9 

The Sonogram 
display shows the 
relative strengths of 
the frequencies in 
your recording. 

^ Emphasis 
r~l Contrast 

Waveform Zoom Input Gain 

The Mixer window (Figure 1 1.1 1) is one of MacRecorder’s most important 
features. It lets you combine up to four recordings and save the result in a 
specified destination. Any noncompressed sound or selected portion can 
appear in one of the four channel displays, where it can have its amplitude 

Figure 11.10 

The Spectrogram 
display shows the 
frequency content 
of a sound and 
how it changes 
over time. 



adjusted with an envelope effect like the one mentioned earlier. This win- 
dow allows you to combine dialog, sound effects, or music into a final mix 
for your presentation. 

SoundEdit suppons three file formats: SoundEdit format (used in many 
Macintosh applications). Instrument format (used in some music pro- 
grams), and Audio Interchange File Format (Audio IFF), a standard audio 
format supported by Apple Computer and by sample-editing programs 
such as Alchemy. Additionally, SoundEdit supports both Format 1 and 
Format 2 sound (SND) resources. 

Figure 11.11 

The Mixer 
window lets you 
combine up to 
four recordings, 
each with its own 
envelope effect. 


Mono 22K 


(0.02-1 .92) 

Mono 22K 


Mono 22K 

Media Demo 

Mono 1 1K 


In addition to SoundEdit, MacRecorder provides a HyperCard stack that 
allows you to record and play monaiu'al sounds using a variety of sampling 
rates and compression ratios. With HyperSound, you can copy sounds to 
other stacks or transfer sounds to SoundEdit for further editing. The 
HyperSound stack (Figure 11.12) consists of a number of “tape-deck” con- 
trols along with several buttons, controls, indicators, and information fields. 

Digital Audio for the Masses (8-Bit) 


Figure 11.12 

With Mac- 
Recorder’s Hyper- 
Sound you can 
record sounds and 
add them to Hyper- 
Card stacks. 



Hyp,- rSoimd 

1 Crystal || 

• 1^1 


. 1.1. ..I 



1 itefl II / r . i 1 1 t . 1 . 1 II 1 




□ r,v ^ 





o [O 



(S)22KHz 1 

On KHz QS KHz ■ 


03:1 06:1 1 

Ol:1 08:1 ■ 

I inda 

left and right 








Copg sound 
to stack 

Copg sound 
from stack 

Create Home 

To test your input level before recording, H 5 TjerSound provides a bar-graph 
level meter that you activate by clicking the Test button. After setting the 
input level and choosing a sampling rate or compression ratio, simply click 
the Record button to begin. When you do, a pop-up window appears with 
a thermometer-style gauge, which fills as you record, to indicate the remain- 
ing time available for the recording. You can then play back your soundfile 
and adjust the volume using the Output Level slider. 

Along the right side of the window, several icons help you integrate your 
work in H3T3erSound with other applications and stacks. Clicking the first 
icon closes H}T5erSound and opens SoundEdit; clicking the second button 
opens the H3T3erSound Toolkit. The third icon lets you copy the current 
sound and export it to another stack. If you like, you can choose Paste But- 
ton from the Edit menu to create a button that will play your new sound. 
The next icon lets you copy soimds from another HyperCard stack into 
HyperSound, and the fifth icon lets you create a button on the Home card 
that will take you directly to the HyperSound stack. 



HyperSound ToolKit 

The H 3 TJerSound Toolkit consists of a number of HyperTalk external com- 
mands (XCMDs) and external functions pCFCNs) that you can use to 
record and play monaural sounds or noncompressed stereo soimds in other 
HyperCard stacks. At the top of the stack, an Index card (Figure 11.13) 
represents each XCMD and XFCN with an icon. Clicking any button 
produces the installer card for that external command or fimction. With the 
HyperSound Toolkit you can customize your stacks and use sounds in a 
variety of ways, but you must first be familiar with the structure, syntax, 
and usage of the HyperTalk language to get useful results. 

Figure 11.13 
The HyperSound 
Toolkit provides 
XCMDs and 
XFCNs for more 
advanced Hyper- 
Card users. 

■■V Fttttdloir 

HyperSound^^ Toolkit 

HyperSound Too/kit 


CopySnd XCMD 

DuplicatfSnd XCMD 

EraseSnd XCM) 





lnputL»v«1 XFCN 

P„t»Snd XCMO 


Record XFCN 

R»n«mtSnd XCMD 

Sr>dlnfo XFCN 

SndUst XFCN | 


Volum» XFCN 

® ? 

Port of the MocPecorder^ Sound Syitem 



si Voice Impact Pro 

As with MacRecorder, the Voice Impact Pro package from Articulate S 3 rs- 
tems consists of a hardware/software combination that digitizes soimds for 
recording, editing, and saving. Although the two products share much 
common ground. Articulate Systems has introduced a munber of design 

Digital Audio for the Masses (8-Bit) 


improvements yet has sacrificed other features in the process. The two 
products also part company somewhat in terms of their intended use. 
MacRecorder serves effectively as a general-purpose recording system while 
Voice Impact Pro, through its design and literature, stresses its capabilities 
at fully integrating with a number of business software produas, such as 
Aiicrosoft Excel and Mail, CE QuickMail, FullWrite Professional, Mathe- 
matica, WordPerfea Office, and other programs that suppon sound or 
voice annotation. 

Voice Impact Pro’s hardware comes in a thin, modern-looking, 7.5" x 3" 
rectangular box, which Articulate Systems describes as an “ergonomically 
designed black case.” It comes with a clip for moimting on the side of your 
monitor, or you can use it as a hand-held unit. The bottom of the device 
provides an unmarked input-level adjustment slider and a small, immarked 
switch for selecting between the Voice Impact Pro recording mode or a mode 
that emulates the MacRecorder. The rear panel includes a minijack for use as 
either a monaural, line input or an external miaophone connection. 

Aside from the standard digitizing components. Voice Impact Pro includes 
a built-in digital signal processor as well as on-board digital compression 
circuitry that enables it to perform real-time compression even on older 
Macintosh models. The more complex nature of Voice Impact Pro requires 
an external AC power supply (tmlike MacRecorder), which plugs into the 
back panel below the minijack. 

The top section of the plastic case houses a nicely designed, unidirectional 
microphone that slides forward to activate recording fimetions. The front 
panel provides two LEDs: The first indicates that the px)wer is on and the 
microphone is extended, while the second shows that recording is in progress. 

Voice Impact Pro records with 8-bit resolution at any of three sampling 
rates: 22, 1 1, and 7.4 kHz. It also offers two compression ratios: 3:1 and 
6:1. The software side of the product consists mainly of two applications 
for recording and editing sounds. Voice Record can be used as a desk 
accessory or accessed direaly from within several business applications. 

You would most likely use it to add voice messages to various kinds of docu- 
ments. Soundwave more closely resembles MacRecorder’s SoundEdit 
application since it provides graphic displays, additional editing options, 
and sound-processing features. 




To begin recording in SoundWave^ you first selea Record from the File 
menu, which opens a dialog box containing transport-control buttons, an 
available-time indicator, a VU-style peak-hold meter (for monitoring input 
levels), and an options box for setting the sampling rate (Figure 1 L 14). If 
you change the sampling rate, the available-time indicator (which fills from 
left to right during recording) refleas the change. When youVe finished 
your recording, click the Stop button and then choose Done. This immedi- 
ately opens the Sound Editing window, which incorporates two different 
displays of your recorded sound (Figure 11.15). 

Figure 11.14 

Voice Impact Pro 
provides a dialog 
box to record and 
play back sounds. 

Figure 11.15 

The Sound Edit- 
ing window shows 
your recording as a 
waveform display 
with an overview of 
the entire soundfile 
above it. 

Digital Audio for the Masses (8-Bit) 

191 I 

Along its top section, the editing window provides a reduced view of the 
sound wave for the entire recording. This gives a good overview to help 
you locate specific sections while retaining a sense of the overall context. 
Beneath this display, a bigger area provides an enlarged view showing, in 
much greater detail, a small, selected area of the sound wave. You deter- 
mine the area to show in the enlarged view by dragging a small rectangle, 
called a Scroll window, through the upper display to the desired location. 
The Scroll window changes size in proportion to the length of the recorded 
sound that can be shown in the enlarged view. In other words, short record- 
ings produce a larger Scroll window since more of the total waveform can 
fit in the enlarged view and vice versa. These settings are otherwise not 

Along the left side of the window, a palette of tools offers three ctirsor 
options for editing and four buttons for playing sounds. You use the Pointer 
to scroll, select menu items, and choose options. The I-beam cursor selects 
segments of sound for editing by dragging through them, and you can make 
modifications to the waveform in the enlarged display by drawing with the 
Pencil tool. 

The first of the playback buttons plays the entire sound from beginning to 
end, and the second button plays any selected area. The Play Instnunent 
button is used when working with Studio Session sounds, and the last but- 
ton plays whatever sound was last copied to the Clipboard. This lets you 
preview a copied sound before you paste it into another recording— a handy 

Soundwave’s editing options are not as extensive as SoundEdit’s, but you’ll 
still find plenty to keep you busy. The Mix command lets you combine a 
sound on the Clipboard with the contents of the Sound Editing window. 
When you select Mbc from the Edit menu, a dialog box appears with two 
sliders for adjusting the amplitude of the Clipboard sound and the original 
sound before initiating the mix. 

You can adjust playback speed for each of your recordings by selecting Play 
Options from the Edit menu. Although it doesn’t modify the sound itself, 
the Speed scroll-bar lets you increase or decrease the playing speed of a 



sound and save the setting with the soundfile. This is not the same as 
MacRecorder’s Tempo effect, which increases or decreases playback speed 
without changing pitch. SoundWave’s command produces an effect more 
like playing a record at the wrong speed— both pitch and speed change 
together. A Volume control also lets you set the volume for each soundfile 
independently of the Macintosh Control Panel. 

By selecting Filter from the Wave menu, you can access SoundWave’s 
on-screen, digital filter, which resembles a six-band graphic equalizer (Fig- 
ure 1 1. 16). Double-clicking on a slider handle produces a dialog box that 
lets you reset the range of that slider’s frequency band. To create echo 
effects. Soundwave offers a Delay option that uses sliders in a dialog box to 
set the Delay Time, Delay Amplitude, and Final Amplitude for a sound or 
selected portion. The Amplify option enables you to adjust the amplitude 
of a selected sound segment from 1 percent to 400 percent of the original. 
Although Soundwave doesn’t provide the same advanced envelope-shaping 
features as MacRecorder, it does offer a Fade In option and a Fade Out 
option to create simple and limited kinds of amplitude modifications. 

Figure 11.16 

digital filter lets you 
set the range of 
each slider’s 
frequency band. 

I 1855 3710 55M 7<119 9273 

1855 3709 5564 7418 9273 11127 

[ Cancel j 

ll PK )l 


SoundWave’s Reverse effect lets you play sounds (or selected portions) 
backward. The Smooth command averages out sudden amplimde changes, 
causing a muted effect, while Resample and Compress let you downsample 
your recording or apply compression to conserve storage space. 

To further analyze your sounds, SoundWave includes a Spectrum window 
that resembles SoundEdit’s Spectrogram feature. This window graphically 
displays the amplitudes of frequencies and how they change over time by 
showing a series of 1 -kilobyte segments of sound (Figure 11.17). The Spec- 
trum command brings up a dialog box giving you the opportunity to set the 

Digital Audio for the Masses (8-Bit) 


range of frequencies shown in the display and whether or not the graph will 
appear in three dimensions. Although the Spectrum window is not as well 
implemented as its MacRecorder counterpart, its graphics are clearer and 
easier to read. 

Figure 11.17 

The Spectrum 
window shows the 
amplitudes of 
frequencies and 
how they change 
over time. 

SoimdWave provides a very helpful feature with its Connect-the-Dots 
option under the Display menu. When you select this command, the pro- 
gram draws lines between the amplitude dots in the waveform, making it 
much easier to interpret what you see in the window (Figure 11.18). 

If you like synthesizing your own sounds, the Tone Generator feature (Fig- 
ure 11.19) may interest you. You can use it to produce a tone by specifying 
and mbdng up to four sine waves, each with its own period and amplitude. 
You can then combine the result with a recorded sound for special effect or 
use it as a signal tone. 

Soundwave allows you to display up to four waveform windows at a time. 
To facilitate comparison, it provides two viewing options. The Stack Win- 
dows command displays all open windows stacked on top of one another 
with a slight offset, while the Tile Windows command arranges the win- 
dows in a side-by-side configuration. 



Figure 11.18 

Using the 
option makes inter- 
preting some wave- 
forms much easier, 
as shown here in a 



Figure 11.19 

The Tone 
Generator lets you 
synthesize your 
own sounds by 
mixing up to four 
different sine 

. ' Tone Generator 



This utility ujiil 
generate up to four sine 
ujoues of different 
frequency and amplitude. 

Length is entered in 
bytes. R ualue of 22255 
produces one second of 

Period is entered in 
bytes. Tuienty-tmo bytes 
giues a I kHz tone. 

Rmplitude should be 
from 0 to 127. 

lilaue period amplitude 




[ Cancel ) [ OK ] 









Digital Audio for the Masses (8-Bit) 


Voice Record 

The primary strength of the Voice Impact Pro system lies in its ability to 
integrate its recording and editing features into other programs. The appli- 
cation that accomplishes this, Voice Record, can be used independently as a 
desk accessory (if there is no host application) or from within any program 
that supports sound recording. When used in this manner. Voice Record 
replaces the often-limited transport-control panel of the host program with 
its own, more advanced display, which provides recording and editing 
options not otherwise available. As mentioned previously, this will mainly 
interest users of business software that supports digitized voice annotation 
along with its text and graphics files; but those who own one of the newer 
Macintosh models (LC, Ilsi, etc.) can benefit as well, since Voice Record 
can override the limited recording capabilities offered with these machines. 

To begin using Voice Record, you must open it from within the supporting 
application or selea it from the Apple menu. This brings up the Voice Record 
dialog box, which contains the transport-style buttons, a level meter, and a pie 
graph that shows the available recording time (Figure 1 1.20). 

Figure 11.20 

Voice Record can 
replace the often- 
limited control 
panels provided 
with other pro- 
grams that support 
sound. It is shown 
here in its expanded 
version, which 
includes a wave- 
form display and 
additional buttons. 



When you’ve made your recording, you can view the sound by selecting 
Show Editing from the Edit menu. This expands the window to its full 
size, revealing the waveform display along with several additional buttons. 
The Zoom In and Out buttons let you adjust the level of detail that you see 
in the sound display. The Mark button lets you place little diamond shapes 
at key places along the display as an aid in identifying and relocating impor- 
tant parts. The Loudness buttons allow you to adjust the amplitude of 
selected areas. Any selected portion of a waveform can be cut, copied, 
pasted, deleted, or merged. If you need to do additional editing, you can 
import the sound into SoundWave. 

Voice Record and SoundWave support a number of file formats, including 
SoundWave format (similar to FSSD), usable with many applications, 
including SoundWave and SoimdEdit; Audio IFF, used by Apple Com- 
puter and others for storing audio files; Audio IFF-C, a format based on 
Audio IFF that allows for compression; and Resource (SND) format, used 
for storing soimds inside an application, a document, or a file. 

For HyperCard users, the Voice Record disk includes a stack providing you 
with all of Voice Record’s capabilities from within HyperCard. Addition- 
ally, the software lets you install external commands (XCMDs) that enable 
you to use Voice Record in other stacks that you create. 

Bl Mitshiba StereoRecorder 

Olduvai Corporation has recently entered the digital audio marketplace 
with the introduction of the Mitshiba StereoRecorder. As its name clearly 
states, this 8-bit sound digitizer differs from those mentioned above in its 
ability to record in stereo with a single unit. The 5" x7" box comes with 
cables that attach to both of the serial pons on you Macintosh and includes 
jacks that allow you to keep your printer and modem connected. The front 
panel provides two Port Select buttons to switch between the StereoRecor- 
der and your peripherals. 

You can record from line-level sources like CD players and tape recorders 
by using the stereo RCA-type input jacks on the rear panel. On the front 

Digital Audio for the Masses (8-Bit) 


panel there are three inputs for microphones— one for a monaural electret 
microphone and two for a stereo d 3 mamic microphone. The digitizer can 
simultaneously handle line-level signals and input from a microphone to 
record, for example, backgrotmd music and narration at the same time. 

StereoRecorder comes packaged with a monaural, omnidirectional elearet 
microphone and its SoundMan application, which provides a control panel 
for recording and playing sounds. The software lets you control the ampli- 
tude and speed of playback, and it also provides a waveform display and 
looping feature. SoundMan supports all of the standard sample rates, like 
5, 1 1, and 22 kHz, as well as any other sample rate that you choose— up to 
44 kHz. It also provides compression ratios of 6:1 and 3:1 and supports 
Audio IFF and SND file formats in addition to its own SoundMan File 



Play the current soundfile 


Adngia M.M 

SOtU* vocc 


Digital Audio 
for the Rich and 
Famous ( 16 -Bit) 


f he recording systems described in the previous chapter make good use of 
the Macintosh’s inherent ability to handle sound. But^ to do that (without 
slowing the processor or demanding too much memory)^ they’ve had to 
limit themselves to 8-bit resolution and reasonably low sample rates of up 
to 22 kHz. With those numbers you can expect sound that’s about as good 
as an inexpensive AM radio— not too bad for dialog but not great for music 
and many kinds of sound effects. 

With movie theaters offering improved sound systems, video recorders 
producing hi-fi stereo playback, and compact discs rapidly becoming the 
audio norm, many multimedia producers have raised their expeaations to 
meet the new demands for improved clarity and realism in their presenta- 
tion soundtracks. The jump from 8-bit, 22-kHz audio to true high fidelity, 
however, is no small step. It requires substantially more processing power 
and, therefore, more sophisticated hardware, which in turn costs much 
more money. All the products in this chapter yield impressive results, 
which should please even the most demanding audiophiles and open the 
door, for many, to true Mac-based professional audio. 



si Audiomedia 

Like the products covered in Chapter 1 1, the Audiomedia system, from 
Digidesign, consists of a hardware/software combination for recording and 
editing digital sound with your computer. Unlike those products, however. 
Audiomedia brings CD-quality sound to the Macintosh with its 16-bit reso- 
lution and sampling rates of up to 44.1 kHz. To achieve this level of perfor- 
mance, Audiomedia incorporates its own Motorola processing chip into an 
add-on NuBus card that will work in any available Mac II slot. The card, 
combined with the Audiomedia application, turns your computer into a 
powerful direct-to-disk recording system that can record both monaural and 
stereo sounds and save them in a variety of file formats. 

When it comes to high-quality, direct-to-disk recording, you might say 
there’s good news and there’s bad news. The good news is that Audiomedia 
requires very little RAM to operate. Digitizing systems like MacRecorder 
use the computer’s RAM for recording and playback and only use the hard 
disk for storing files. This means that your computer needs enough mem- 
ory to hold the System, Finder, and any applications that you want to use 
along with the sounds that you’ll be pla 3 nng. It’s clear that very long 
sounds are impractical with this approach. 

Audiomedia, on the other hand, records directly to your hard disk and play- 
back is direct-from-disk. The Audiomedia’s microprocessor board signifi- 
cantly enhances the audio capabilities of your computer and simultaneously 
frees the Macintosh’s processor to handle other work-intensive tasks, like 
animation. In practical terms this means that with no more than about 
50 kilobytes of available RAM, you can play back a sound of virtually any 
length— limited only by the size of your hard disk. In theory, then, a 1- 
megab}^e Macintosh could play back an hom-long sound. 

The bad news is that to record that one-hoiu" soundfile, you’ll need a hard 
disk with a 600-megabyte capacity, since 16-bit, 44.1-kHz stereo recording 
requires 10 megabytes per minute. A large-capacity hard drive— with an 
access time of 28 milliseconds or less— is an essential component of this 
direct-to-disk recording system. You’ll also need a high-impedance micro- 
phone to record vocal parts and acoustic instruments. 

Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous (16-Bit) 


The back panel of the Audiomedia card houses five jacks for connecting inputs 
and outputs. The '/4-inch jack at the top provides a microphone input and the 
two RCA-type jacks below it allow line-level input connections. If you like, 
you can use all three together to record voice and stereo audio simultaneously. 
The bottom two RCA-style jacks— the stereo outputs — connea to yoiu ampli- 
fier for playback. 

Audiomedia's Software 

Recording and playback activities in Audiomedia are centered on the Tape 
Deck Panel (Figure 12.1)3 which includes the standard transport-style con- 
trols in a clearly designed, straightforward display. A small pop-up menu 
lets you select an appropriate sample rate, while the Input Level slider and 
the Input Level meters enable you to set the incoming signal for optimum 
results without clipping. To initiate recording, click on the Record button 
and then click Stop when you’re finished. The RTZ (rewind to zero) but- 
ton returns you to the beginning of the track, and Play yields instant play- 
back. If necessary, you can rerecord your performance by returning to the 
start and repeating the procedure. 

Figure 12.1 

Audioraedia’s Tape 
Deck Panel 

File Name: Tape Deck Panel 

Sample Rate: | 44100 ] 










□ Pre-flilocate 
Buf Size: |o | 

□ —Clip— o 
— 0 — 

— 3 — 1 

— 6 — I 
— 9 — 
— 12 — 
— 21—1 

O Line 
Input: ®Mic-»Llne 
^ O Mute 



( Quit ] 



When you’re satisfied with your work, selecting Quit opens the Soundfile 
window, where your recorded sound appears as a waveform in a graphic 
display (Figure 12.2). The Soundfile window actually consists of two differ- 
ent displays. The Overview display shows either the entire recording in a 
single waveform picture or a simple time line (without the waveform) repre- 
senting the length of the recording. Below the Overview display, the Right 
and Left Channel waveforms appear in a magnified view that you can edit. 
In these displays the horizontal axis shows elapsed time in seconds, and 
the vertical axis shows the percentage of maximum amplitude of each 

Figure 12.2 

The Soundfile 
window, showing 
the Overview 
display above the 
Right and Left 
Channel waveforms 

Along the top of the Soundfile window, several icons provide access to a 
number of recording, editing, and playback ftmctions. The Speaker icon 
plays the entire soundfile (or any selected portion of it) directly from disk. 
The Zoom Box icon lets you draw a selection box over any part of the 
Overview or Waveform display, enlarging that area to fill the Right/Left 
Channel view. 

Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous (16-Bit) 


The Pencil icon lets you redraw small sections of the waveform to eliminate 
jagged edges from edit points or to smooth over transient clicks and pops. 
The Selection icon changes the cursor into an I-beam for selecting regions 
of the waveform to edit, with commands such as Cut, Copy, Paste, Reverse, 
and Fade Out. The Display Scale icon, with its four arrows, provides dif- 
ferent ways to adjust the viewing scale in the waveform display. The up and 
down arrows let you adjust how tall the waveform appears so that you can 
achieve the best resolution when viewing amplitude differences. The right 
arrow zooms the display in to view more detail, and the left arrow zooms 
out to gain a greater overview of the waveform. 

The Soimdfile window lets you place two different kinds of markers along 
the bottom of the waveform display. You can use the Numbered Marker 
icon to place an unlimited number of markers in any soundfile, tagging 
important areas for later recall. You can quickly locate the first nine markers 
by typing their numbers on the Macintosh keyboard. Additionally, the Text 
Marker icon lets you place text notes in a soundfile to help label or identify 
significant events. 

The Tape Deck button opens the Tape Deck Panel, where recording takes 
place, while the Playlist button opens the Playlist window, where nondestruc- 
tive playlist edits are assembled (see below). Finally, the Scrub icon switches 
the window into Scrub mode so that you can locate exaa spots in the wave- 
form by slowly dragging the playback cursor back and forth across the display 
as you listen to the soundfile. 

In the upper-right comer of the Soundfile window, the Data Indicator boxes 
provide relevant information about such things as the insertion point and cur- 
sor position, while the Trash Can in the lower-left comer lets you throw away 
both kinds of markers. Additionally, for users with color or gray-scale monitors, 
the Set Colors command lets you assign different colors to the various compo- 
nents in the Soundfile window for easier identification. 

Aside from its high-level recording quality. Audiomedia’s greatest strengths 
lie in its extensive editing capabilities. These fall into two distinct and 
important categories; destructive and nondestructive. 

Destmetive editing, with commands like Smooth, Mix, and Reverse, 
changes the way a recording sounds by permanently altering the actual data 



that constitutes the waveform. In so doing, you cause the Macintosh to 
manipulate and/or rearrange files that are often very large and this can take 
some time to process. But destructive edits offer the only way to produce 
a finished soundfile that you can then export to another application for 

Nondestructive editing, on the other hand, allows you to slice, dice, and 
rearrange the parts of a soundfile to your heart’s content, without altering 
the original recording. Audiomedia calls this approach “Playlist editing,” and 
it’s one of the program’s most powerful features. It involves selecting vari- 
ous subdivisions of a soimdfile and playing them back in whatever order 
you want. Rather than changing the source material itself, the Playlist acts 
like a map that assigns a playback sequence to the parts of the soundfile, 
allowing you to create a virtually unlimited number of arrangements from a 
single recording. Creating a new structure from the pans of a soundfile 
involves editing only the “playback map,” not the recording, so aside from 
being nondestructive, it also demands far less processing. 

To assemble a Playlist, you first must define the various Playlist Regions (such 
as Chorus, Verse, and Interlude) by selecting the appropriate areas from the 
waveform and choosing the Capture Region command for each. Once you’ve 
named the regions, you can open the Playlist window (Figure 12.3), where 
they will appear in the upper half of the display. Creating a Playlist is easy- 
just drag the names from the Regions area down into the Playlist area to form 
the proper playback sequence. 

To produce the smoothest results where the regions are joined. Audiomedia 
lets you choose from a plethora of different transitions. The Playlist defaults to 
the Splice transition, which simply connects the adjacent regions. If you find 
this edit too abrupt, you can choose one of several crossfade t)q3es, including 
Linear crossfade. Equal Power crossfade (which compensates for a possible 
volume drop at the transition point). Linear pre-crossfade (which crossfades 
before the transition). Equal Power pre-crossfade, Slow-in/Fast-out cross- 
fade, and Fast-in/Slow-out crossfade. Two types of Overlap transitions 
round out the list. 

Once you assemble and save a Playlist, you can always open, play, and edit 
it, and you can even modify a Region itself by reselecting the waveform 

Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous (16-Bit) 


Figure 12.3 

Playlist window lets 
you use nondestruc- 
tive editing to 
create new record- 
ings by rearranging 
the parts of a 


Playlist lUindouj Playlist: fln Enample 

00 : 00 : 00.00 

Verse Measure 
Snare HU 
Shortened verse 

Brass Fall 

Istart Time iRegion 


Stop Time 





Snare Hit 




0 msec 

127 O 


Snare Hit 




0 msec 



Snare Hit 




0 rnsec 



Verae Measure 



"x ■ 

66 msec 







6 ms« 



Verse Measure 




40 msec 



Verse Measure 



120 msec 

T 27 . 




00:66:1 i.i i 


70 msec 

127 , 

00:00: 11. 1 1 





70 msec 

127 ;in 


Brass Fall 

00:00:00 44 



6 msec 

127 " 


Shortened verse 

00:00:02 15 



0 msec 



Snare Hit 




0 msec 

127 <y 


Snare Hit 




P m se c 


area that it’s derived from. Unfortunately, you can’t use Playlists directly in 
other applications. To circumvent this limitation, Audiomedia provides a 
Save Playlist as Soundfile command that creates a copy of a Playlist perfor- 
mance and saves it in a format usable by other programs. 

Aside from those already mentioned. Audiomedia boasts an impressive list 
of other editing options. In addition to the usual Cut, Copy, and Paste com- 
mands, you can reverse or invert a waveform area, insert silence, or trim 
away unwanted data from outside the selected range. You can also fade in or 
out and adjust the amplitude of a waveform range to achieve optimum 
levels. The Smoothing command automatically eliminates the transient 
clicks that often appear at edit points, the Merge command lets you set the 
parameters for crossfades, and the SR Convert command allows you to 
change a soundfile to another sample rate. 

For those users with MIDI equipment as part of their computer systems. 
Audiomedia provides the MIDI Preview command, which enables you to 
turn yotor Macintosh into a rudimentary instrument-playback device that 
you can trigger from a MIDI controller. This is not intended as a substitute 
for a full-featured sampling keyboard— a job handled quite well by Digide- 
sign’s SampleCell (see later in this chapter)— but rather as a way to audition 



music-oriented soundfiles by pla 3 dng them over a range of notes, using a 
MIDI keyboard controller or similar device. 

With Audiomedia’s digital mixing function, you can take up to four sound- 
files (mono or stereo) and blend them together into a new mono or stereo 
soundfile. Choosing the Mix command opens the Mix window, which 
provides controls for specifying the fader levels, pan positions, and delay 
settings (if any) for each input channel (Figure 12.4). 

Figure 12.4 

The Mix window 
lets you combine 
up to four mono or 
stereo sotmdflles. 

As you might expect. Audiomedia offers a versatile and well-implemented 
graphic equalization feature. The Programmable Graphic EQ window 
(Figure 12.5) includes a master volume control and ten frequency sliders, 
which are used together for mono recordings or divided into two groups of 
five for stereo. You can customize each frequency band by double-clicking 
on the frequency number below each fader. This opens a dialog box that 
lets you specify both the center frequency and the bandwidth for the 
selected control. You can also save any EQ configuration along with its 
soundfile or as a general setup in Audiomedia. 

The Graphic EQ window provides even more versatility by letting you 
use it either destructively or nondestructively. In other words, you can 
apply the EQ effect to a recording and permanently alter the soundfile to 

Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous ( 16 -Bit) 


Figure 12.5 

The Programmable 
Graphic EQ win- 
dow allows you to 
customize each 
slider by specifying 
its center frequency 
and bandwidth. 

P Programmable Graphic EQ 

Soundfiie: | Rhythm | Chonnel(s): O 


-1 .4 dB -2 dB 3 dB 1 dB -4 dB -3 dB 1 dB -2 dB 4 dB 2 dB 6 dB 
Vol 62 125 187 250 325 500 750 1.0 2.0 3.0 

N y V y ^ s nuse for playback 

Flat J [Process J [Settings] □Bypass 

reflea the new frequency curve, or you can use the EQ controls as a real- 
time, nondestructive equalizer during playback without changing the actual 
soundfiie data. 

To analyze your waveforms. Audiomedia provides a 3-D, Fast Fourier 
Transform (FFT) display that shows the frequency content of a soimd and 
how the different amplitudes change over time. The FFT window (Fig- 
ure 12.6) allows you to adjust its display parameters by setting such things 
as the frequency range, the time interval, and the type of scale. You can also 
selea from one of four types of displays, each of which emphasizes specific 
aspects of the data. 

Of particular interest to multimedia producers, the Time Compression/ 
Expansion window (Figure 12.7) lets you adjust the duration of a recording 
(or any selected portion) without altering its pitch. This is especially useful 
for fitting narration (or an instrumental solo) into a given time period— as 
long as you keep the adjustment within reason. The window provides 
boxes for specifying either the desired length or a ratio between the new 
version and the old. You can also specify the sound’s relative complexity, 
which channel to use as a guide track, and whether or not to process per- 
cussive attacks. 



Figure 12.6 

The FFT window 
shows the fre- 
quency content of a 
sound and how it 
changes over time. 

Figure 12.7 

With Audiomedia’s 
Time Compression/ 
Expansion window, 
you can adjust the 
duration of a sound- 
file without chang- 
ing its pitch. 

Si Time Compression/Enpansion 

Soundfile: | Narrator 

1 CompleHity: Guide Track: 

Current Length: 


OLom ^ 

secs ® Medium 

.... OH„» 

Desired Length: 


Time Ratio: 


(SI Process Percussiue Attacks 


Audiomedia supports several soundfile formats, including SoundEdit for- 
mat (created by MacRecorder), both 8-bit and 16-bit SND resources, Audio 
IFF format, and mono or stereo Sound Designer formats (created by Digi- 
design’s Sound Designer program). If you need the disk space, you can also 
choose either a 2: 1 or a 4; 1 compression ratio. 

Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous (16-Bit) 



Audiomedia provides a second application^ SoundAccess, that allows you to 
record, edit, and play back hard-disk-based soundfiles from within Hyper- 
Card. The current version of SoundAccess supports HyperCard versions 
1.2.2 and later— up to, but not including, H 3 T)erCard 2.0. If you’re still 
using one of these earlier versions of HyperCard, you can incorporate 
Audiomedia sounds into your stacks. Clicking on the Recording Workshop 
button produces a card (SoimdAccess is itself a stack) that depicts an open- 
reel tape deck (Figure 12.8). Below the picture, several icons let you set 
levels, and record, play, and edit your sounds. 

Figure 12.8 

The Recording 
Workshop card in 
SoundAccess pro- 
vides the controls 
for recording 
HyperCard sounds. 

If you understand HyperTalk, the SoundAccess Installer Card (Figure 12.9) 
provides you with the tools to copy XCMDs and XFCNs into your own 
stacks. With SoimdAccess you can create buttons to play sounds and create 
interactive HyperCard presentations that include high-fidelity audio. 



Figure 12.9 

The SoundAccess 
Installer Card 
supplies several 
tools for working 
with HyperCard. 

SoundAccess Installer Card 

Installs eveiytl ling you need to record and pla>'backhard disk audio 

Simp1« PUy Only 


Insiall Recording Workshop 


Install All Rasouroas 


Install Cue List Workshop 


Install All Workshops 


Install Editing Workshop 

Install a SoundRccess button in my home stack. 

si Sound Tools 

Digidesign’s Sound Tools, another hardware/software combination for direct- 
to-disk recording, preceded Audiomedia in the marketplace and soon gained 
an avid following. The system costs more than three times as much as Audio- 
media, but offers several additional features that make it more suitable for 
professional recording applications, such as CD premastering, film scoring, 
sound-effects editing, and ADR (automatic dialog replacement). 

The recording/editing system consists of three components. The Sound 
Tools NuBus card resembles Audiomedia’s except that it only provides a 
single stereo output jack. The card attaches to one of three external hard- 
ware interfaces; the standard Analog Interface for recording line-level sig- 
nals, the bidirectional Digital Interface for digital-domain recording and 
mastering capability, and the Professional Analog Interface for meeting the 
higher demands of professional recording studios and soimd engineers. 

Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous (16-Bit) 


Sound Designer II represents the third part of the package. It’s nearly 
identical to the software that comes with Audiomedia except that it also 
offers a number of useful looping features, as well as several powerful DSP 
(digital signal processing) functions. 

Sound Tools boasts a slightly better signal-to-noise ratio than Audiomedia 
and (with the Pro I/O or Digital Interface) a top sampling rate of 48 kHz. 
Of particular interest to those working with film and video, Sound Tools 
supports all major SMPTE timecode formats and also offers continuous 
resync and chasing capabilities. 

I More about Samplers 

While Audiomedia and Sound Tools excel at recording, editing, and saving 
digital audio, they are not appropriately designed to play back sounds in a 
way that you can use for real-time musical performance. If you want to use 
digital recording technology to compose and perform your music, you’ll 
need a device called a sampler. As I described briefly in Chapter 3, samplers 
typically come in keyboard and sound module versions and sport a wide 
variety of features and specifications. They typically provide resolutions 
ranging from 8-bit to 16-bit with prices that vary accordingly. In spite of all 
the seeming diversity of hardware, samplers all employ the same basic 
approach to producing instrumental sounds: A short digital recording, 
called a sample, is used as the basic source material and its pitch is raised or 
lowered by half-step increments when triggered from a MIDI keyboard. 

In theory, you should be able to take a single sample of a piano sound 
and re-create the entire keyboard range by extending it up and down over 
several octaves. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way in the real world. 
Individual samples begin to sound strained and imnatural when they’re 
stretched more than a few half steps in either direaion above or below the 
original pitch. To avoid this problem, samplers use several samples taken at 
strategic points along the range of an instrument. When these multisamples 
are “mapped” across the keyboard, they not only solve the problem of over- 
stretched samples but they better capture the inherent changes in timbre 
that acoustic instruments exhibit as they play from one register to another. 



si SampleCell 

Until recently, samplers were mainly external hardware devices that con- 
nected to a MIDI system, in the usual way, along with the other compo- 
nents in the setup. Digidesign, however, now offers a significant alternative 
to that approach with SampleCell: a hardware/software combination that 
turns your Macintosh into a powerful stereo sample-playback system with 
16-bit resolution, 16-note polyphony, and a maximum 16-voice multitim- 
bral capability. The hardware consists of an add-on NuBus card that works 
in any Macintosh II computer with at least 2 megabytes of RAM and a 
13-inch (or larger) monitor. The back panel of the SampleCell card pro- 
vides eight audio output channels configured as four stereo '/ 4 -inch jacks. 
To expand the system, you can combine up to five SampleCell cards (if you 
have the slots), with each contributing another 16 notes of pol}T)hony and 
another eight audio outputs. 

SampleCell has also been designed to work closely with Audiomedia to 
create a fully integrated sampling system that allows you to record sounds 
onto your hard disk, edit them, and then import them into SampleCell, 
where they can be mapped across the keyboard and further edited for 
performance. If you’re not interested in doing your own sampling, you 
needn’t worry. The SampleCell package includes a CD-ROM library with 
hundreds of high-quality samples ready for performance, and several third- 
party vendors offer CD-ROMs with more excellent sotmds (see “More 
Sounds for SampleCell” later in this chapter). Of course, this means that if 
you don’t already own one, you’ll need to buy a CD-ROM player to effec- 
tively use SampleCell since all of its current libraries come in CD format. 

Aside from this possible hidden expense, there are several additional 
requirements that you must address before you can put SampleCell to good 
use. For starters, although you can get by with only 2 megabytes of RAM 
in your computer, I recommend at least twice that amount to avoid prob- 
lems when running SampleCell with other programs. And speaking of 
RAM, SampleCell uses its own on-board memory— up to 8 megab)^es— to 
configure and play back its samples, but Digidesign ships the NuBus card 
without the RAM installed. Although you can buy the board fully loaded 
with eight 1 -megabyte SIMMs (single in-line memory modules), most 
people prefer to save several himdred dollars by installing their own 

Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous (16-Bit) 


memory; Digidesign encourages this approach. You’ll need Macintosh- 
compatible 1-megabyte SIMMs with no more than an 80-ns (nano- 
second) rating. 

Many of the multisampled instruments in the SampleCell libraries are sur- 
prisingly large— often ranging in size from 1 to 5 megabytes. Some even use 
almost the entire 8 megab 3 ^es for a single instrument. Trying to put 
together a multitimbral setup with a single SampleCell can be frustrating 
since you’ll often find yourself short of memory for the instruments that 
you want. To mitigate this situation, the SampleCell CD-ROM offers 
“Lite” versions of several of its instruments. Nonetheless, many of these 
scaled-down variations still demand 1-3 megabytes of RAM. Although, 
technically speaking, the SampleCell card will work with a minimum of 2 
megabytes of installed RAM, I strongly recommend buying 8 megabytes 
since anything less would severely limit its usefulness. 

You should also have a hard disk with a minimum capacity of 40 mega- 
bytes. If you’ll also be using Audiomedia, the recommended minimum 
increases to 100 megabytes with an average access time of 28 milliseconds 
or less. To use SampleCell for performing music, you’ll need a MIDI 
keyboard controller (or other device) and a MIDI interface. You can use 
SampleCell with most sequencers and other compatible music programs 
by installing Apple’s MIDI Manager software in your system. 

SampleCell Editor 

SampleCell uses a straightforward, logical hierarchy for organizing its data. 
The individual raw samples that it uses as its building blocks are contained 
in a Samples folder. By taking one or more samples and assigning them to 
specific keyboard areas, you can create a multisampled Instrument. The 
Instruments folder contains only the data necessary to re-create the settings 
and sample combinations that are used to build an Instrument, but not the 
sample data itself. 

Similarly, grouping several Instruments together as a performance setup 
forms a Bank. When you save a Bank, you are actually storing the informa- 
tion needed to reconfigure a group of Instruments with their corresponding 
settings, but not the Instruments or samples themselves. Since it’s the 



Figure 12.10 

The SampleCell 
Bank window 
represents each 
Instrument with a 
vertical panel. 

sample data that demands the lion’s share of the memory, you can save 
Instrument and Bank files on your hard drive or even on floppy disks with 
little trouble. 

To begin using SampleCell, you must first open a Bank and fill it with 
the Instruments that you want to use by selecting the Open Instrument 
command from the Edit menu. After waiting for them to load (SampleCell 
is no speed demon), the Instruments that you’ve chosen appear in the Bank 
window, which resembles a mixing console with a vertical panel for each 
Instrument (Figure 12.10). 

SampleCell Dank LUindom 

CwdSIpt J. 


Mute{ Solo 

Chofur BeHf 

MirteH Soto 

Alto Sox 
Mute I; So 


Or<A I 
Motejf Solo 




mChm 1 

to m 

Tff . 



65 F 

^icked E. Bars 
:J Stereo 
Mute t Solo T 










Cttfilsfof 1 n 

; lb An 


; Hi C8 




, LiflPbn , 
' -99|“ 

Pop Dromj 
1 Mute |l Solo |: 








. c»m 


>F 1 

\ MOi Chon 3 

lo F3 
‘ HI’ C8 




1 f^lute 2 

Each Instrument panel has a volume fader and a mute and solo button. 
Monaural Instruments have a single panning control while stereo Instru- 
ments use two slider S“One for left and one for right. In the middle of the 
display, you can set the MIDI channel and the keyboard range that the 
Instrument will respond to as well as the output channel where you want 

Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous (16-Bit) 


the audio signal to appear. At the top of each display, you’ll find four but- 
tons that open the doors into SampleCell’s powerful editing displays, where 
you can modify a variety of Instrument parameters to customize your 

Clicking on the button with the keyboard icon opens the Sample Map win- 
dow (Figure 12.11). This window lets you assign each sample in a multi- 
sample Instrument to a specific range of notes, called a Key Group. You 
can have a Key Group that covers the entire keyboard, or you can have up 
to 20 smaller areas that range in size down to a single note. Samples appear 
by name in the Sample Map window with thin vertical lines indicating the 
boundaries of the assigned Key Groups. You can easily change the range of 
a Key Group by dragging a line to a new position, which automatically 
enlarges one area while shrinking its neighboring area. 

Figure 12.11 

The Sample Map 
window with a 
sample selected for 

SampleCell lets you have as many as three samples per Key Group, with 
each sample responding to a different Velocity Zone. This means that when 
you play a note, any one of the assigned samples will sound depending 
upon how hard you strike the key. Many acoustic instruments have differ- 
ent tonal qualities when they’re played loudly as opposed to quietly or 


] 216 

moderately. By capturing these differences with individual samples and 
assigning them to the appropriate Velocity Zones, you can create an Instru- 
ment that not only gets louder when you play harder but also reflects the 
corresponding tonal character. Of course, there’s nothing that says you have 
to use similar samples in your Instruments. If you like, you can have the 
different velocities trigger entirely different kinds of sounds. 

The horizontal lines in the Sample Map window show the assigned Veloc- 
ity Zone boundaries for each sample, and you can drag the lines to new 
positions just like with the Key Groups. The combination of the vertical 
and horizontal lines encloses each Sample in a square or rectangle that 
delineates its key and velocity range. Clicking in an enclosed area selects 
that sample and lets you delete or change the sample as needed. 

Aside from its funaion as a mapping grid, the Sample Map window also 
acts as a MIDI monitor that highlights incoming notes on the keyboard 
display along the bottom and the velocity scale on the left. The currently 
triggered sample also appears highlighted to help you in analyzing your 
Instruments. Double-clicking a sample opens the Sample Parameters dialog 
box (Figure 12.12), which allows you to make adjustments to such things as 
the pan position of each Key Group, the direction and start point of play- 
back, and the volume and pitch of each sample. 

Figure 12.12 

The Sample Para- 
meters dialog box 

Sample File Noma: Alio Sqk C4 mf Sizie: 37,888 bytts 

Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous (16-Bit) 


Clicking the Misc button in the Bank window opens the Misc window 
(Figure 12.13), where you can set several different kinds of parameters for 
an Instrument. On the left side of the window, the Aux Sends display lets 
you assign any two of SampleCell’s eight outputs to act as auxiliary sends 
for use with outboard processors, such as reverbs and digital delays. The 
controls (one for left and one for right) have faders to adjust the amount of 
signal that feeds the Aiox outputs, but you can bypass each fader by clicking 
the appropriate Pre/Post-Fader check box. 

Figure 12.13 

SampleCell’s Misc 
window lets you set 
several of an Instru- 
ment’s parameters. 

The Misc window also provides three controls for changing the Instru- 
ment’s tuning: Octave and Semitone sliders for coarse settings and Detvme 
for finer adjustments. If you play more notes than SampleCell can respond 
to, the Soimd Priority slider for each Instrument lets you prioritize the 
Instruments in a Bank to determine where the excess notes will be dropped. 
The Overlap Amount slider lets you adjust the length of a note’s release 
stage when the same note is retriggered, such as when a cymbal is repeat- 
edly struck in a rhythm part. The Velocity and Pitch Wheel sliders let you 
adjust how an Instrument will respond to those MIDI messages, and the 
check boxes along the right determine how SampleCell will respond to 
your keyboard controller. 

Back in the Bank window, the Matrix Modulation button (the one with the 
grid icon) opens one of SampleCell’s most powerful features. The Matrix 



Modulation window (Figure 12. 14) allows you to control or influence any 
destination parameter with any available control source. The matrix itself^ 
located in the top-center of the window, can have up to 16 “paths” per Instru- 
ment. Each modulation path (represented horizontally) consists of a source 
control and a destination, along with a gate switch and a modulation-amount 
setting. You can quickly select the source and destination parameters from the 
corresponding pop-up menus, and the Amplitude setting establishes the range 
of the modulation effects. The Gate button lets you determine if each modula- 
tion option will be effeaive continuously or only while a note is held. 

Figure 12.14 

powerful Matrix 
Modulation win- 
dow allows you to 
control any destina- 
tion parameter with 
any available con- 
trol source. 

In the lower-right corner of the window, SampleCell provides controls for 
setting up two LFOs (low-frequency oscillators) that can use any of seven 
different waveforms to affect a destination parameter. For example, you can 
create a vibrato effect by assigning an LFO with a sine wave to control 
pitch. A square wave produces a trill-like effect. The Tracking Generator 
lets you create a graph with five adjustable points to act as a modulation 

Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous (16-Bit) 


source, which can itself be afFeaed by other sources, and the Ramp Genera- 
tor lets you apply a ramplike control signal to a modulation path for addi- 
tional effects. 

In the Bank window, each Instrument also has a fourth editing button, 
which opens the Envelope window (Figure 12.15). An envelope is a com- 
mon modulation source that produces a control signal that changes over 
time. This window displays envelopes in a standard graphlike form, but 
if you prefer, you can have them appear as a group of parameter sliders. 
SampleCell provides up to three envelopes per Instrument with each enve- 
lope consisting of five parts: Attack, Decay, Sustain Level, Sustain Decay, 
and Release. Typically, you use envelopes to control amplitude, but the 
program allows great flexibility for creatively applying envelope effects. 

Figure 12.15 

The Envelope 
window can have 
up to three 
envelopes per 

The Gate Time slider lets you set a minimum time that a note will sound 
before the Release stage. This can prevent very short notes (as in some 
rhythm parts) from being abruptly cut off. The Envelope Amount slider 
lets you adjust the overall output of the envelope, and the Keyboard Track 
button causes the envelope times to shorten as the pitches go up and to 
lengthen as they go down. This feature is especially useful when you work 
with some acoustic instrument sounds. 

Sampling with SampleCell 

Although SampleCell is technically a sample-playback device, you can turn 
it into a full-featured sampler by using Audiomedia or Sound Tools as a 



sample-recording “front-end.” To use Soimd Tools, you record a short 
soimd, edit and loop it as needed, and save it in Sound Designer II format 
within your Samples folder on your hard disk. SampleCell can then load 
your sample, and you can include it in any Sample Map window as long as 
there’s enough RAM available. 

To use Audiomedia instead of Sound Tools, you follow the same procedure 
except that you can’t loop a sound because Audiomedia doesn’t support 
looping. If your sample needs looping, you can use the Sound Designer II 
SC software that’s included with SampleCell. After saving your recording 
to disk with Audiomedia, use Sound Designer to set the loop points and 
import the sample into SampleCell. If you own another Sound Designer- 
compatible sampler, you can also import its samples into SampleCell to 
greatly expand your potential library of sounds. SampleCell supports 
Sound Designer, Soimd Designer II, and Audio IFF file formats. For 
more on Sound Designer II, see Chapter 13. 

SI More Sounds for SampleCell 

A number of companies, recognizing SampleCeH’s potential, have released 
CD-ROMs that complement and greatly expand the original library that 
comes in the package. Here are several excellent collections that offer a 
wide variety of instrumental sounds. Let’s begin with the one that comes 
with SampleCell. 


Digidesign has wisely included this disc as part of the SampleCell package 
to allow owners to begin using SampleCell in a meaningful way right from 
the start. As a first library of sounds, it succeeds quite well in illustrating 
both the variety that’s possible with SampleCell and the complexity of 
some of its Instrument configurations. It is by no means a comprehensive 
library, however, since it lacks several important orchestral instruments. 

A number of the Instruments are quite large, making them difficult if not 
impossible to use in a multitimbral setup. Several “Lite” versions help. 

The library includes various types of acoustic and electronic basses, guitars. 

Digital Audio for the Rich and Famous (16-Bit) 


pianos, organs, and drums. There are brass ensembles, solo trumpets, 
female voices, and some woodwinds, and the library also offers acoustic and 
electronic strings, synthesizers, and sound effects. The disc, produced by 
Prosonus, shows a close attention to detail and has excellent soimd quality 
and very smooth looping. 


The Greytsounds CD-ROM, Volume 1 for SampleCell, offers a good 
assortment of sounds that can be applied to many styles of music and writ- 
ing situations. Greytsounds has chosen to fill its library with Instruments 
that consume far less memory than most of those found in other collections. 
This means that many of the Instruments don’t display the same level of 
complexity in their multisample configurations as some of the others, but 
the lower RAM requirements for each Instrument allow you to assemble 
all kinds of Bank setups, making this collection far more suitable for multi- 
timbral applications. With this library it’s quite possible to put together a 
Bank with eight or nine Instruments in it and still have RAM left over. For 
working on ideas or sketching out an arrangement, this can be very useful. 

The CD has a wide variety of sounds with good representation in the areas 
of brass, keyboards, percussion, woodwinds, and guitars (both acoustic and 
electric). There are also many electronic soimds, several vintage keyboards, 
and miscellaneous synthesizers, including the Fairlight. A large section of 
sound effects completes the list. 

McGill University Master Samples 

If your interests lie in the area of orchestral scoring, you should definitely 
look into this CD-ROM. This library offers no saxes, electric guitars, or 
synthesizers, but rather a xmique and varied collection of symphonic instru- 
ments, including orchestral percussion, classical guitars, harps, pianos, and 
organs. There’s a complete assortment of woodwinds (including flutter- 
tongued flute), with several reeds that are especially clean and sweet sound- 
ing and several solo brass instruments. For you historical types, the library 
also includes a number of Baroque and Renaissance instruments, such as 
archlute, crumhom, recorder, shawm, and harpsichord. To round out the 
list, there are several solo and ensemble string sounds with various effeas. 



The documentation that comes on the disc is exceptional. It gives more 
information than most people could possibly want about the individual 
instruments used in the recordings (where, when, and by whom they were 
made), the recording techniques employed (number, placement, and types 
of mikes), and the production process itself. There are also descriptions of 
the Instruments and Banks and some general advice for beginners. It’s clear 
that this collection represents a lot of dedication and hard work, and its 
combination of high-quality sounds, good orchestral variety, and reasonable 
cost makes it well worth considering. 


This collection (entitled Volume Two) is designed to function as a companion 
to the original SampleCell disc that Prosonus produced for Digidesign. 
Although it offers no additional woodwinds, saxes, orchestral percussion, or 
vocals, it does provide a significant supplement in the area of stringed instru- 
ments, both ensemble and solo. There are also several new brass instruments, 
some piano effects, additional synthesizer sounds, more basses, drum kits, 
harps, and sound effects. 

Clearly this library is intended to appeal to those who do film scoring, 
postproduction, and studio work, especially in conjunction with popular 
music. Over the past few years, Prosonus has maintained a reputation for 
offering high-quality audio products for musicians, and this collection of 
samples is no exception. It’s a clean, well-produced library, which nicely 
complements SampleCell’s abilities. 

MIDI Keyboard 

Pattern '] 



Adagio M.M 

sotto vncc 



sing digital audio technology to capture samples of sound has proven to be 
an invaluable tool for creating effective soundtracks for film, video, and 
multimedia. Aside from SampleCell, there are numerous external, hard- 
ware samplers that work well as part of a MIDI system, allowing you to 
play back sounds at specific points in time. And those sounds don’t have to 
be just musical instrument sounds. Sound effects and short sections of dia- 
log work equally well. By taking a sample and assigning it to a MIDI note 
number, you can use one of several sequencing programs to trigger the 
sound, with single-frame accuracy, at the appropriate time in a presentation. 
Of course, samplers lend themselves extremely well to musical applications, 
but many people don’t realize how extensively samplers are used in 
postproduction for sound designing and dialog editing. 

Nonetheless, in spite of their capabilities, samplers need help in achieving 
their maximum potential. To apply intricate editing functions and sophisti- 
cated digital signal processing (DSP), you’ll have to use an editing program. 
The Macintosh, with its intuitive, graphical interface, provides the perfea 
environment for manipulating and saving sound data for use with a variety 
of hardware devices. In this chapter I’ll examine the two most popular 
sample-editing programs for the Mac to see what they have to offer. 



si Sound Designer II 

Sound Designer II is the new, improved stereo successor to Digidesign’s 
popular Sound Designer software. In faa, it has lately assumed a bit of a 
split personality since it now appears in several incarnations depending on 
how you intend to use it. The Sound Designer II that comes with Sound 
Tools represents the fully implemented parent program, which provides all 
of the features found in the other versions. The Audiomedia application is 
actually a slightly scaled back version of Sound Designer II, which lacks 
only the looping functions, a few additional DSP options, and the ability to 
transfer files between the Mac and external samplers. 

If you have a MIDI sampler and you want to edit its samples with your com- 
puter, Sound Designer II SK provides the necessary tools, and for SampleCell 
users, Digidesign provides a special version— Sound Designer II SC— that’s 
been modified to work with that produa. Sound Designer II SC (included 
with SampleCell) functions as a companion to the SampleCell Editor by 
providing the ability to transfer files between the Macintosh and other sam- 
plers. If you’re using Audiomedia with SampleCell to record new sounds, 
Sotmd Designer II SC also supplies the looping functions missing from the 
Audiomedia program. On the other hand, both the SK and SC versions of 
Sound Designer lack the Tape Deck and Playlist buttons found elsewhere, 
since they are designed to function as sample editors and not as direct-to- 
disk recording programs. And finally, only the Sound Designer that comes 
with Sound Tools supports SMPTE timecode. 

All versions of Sound Designer II center their activities on the Soundfile 
window (Figure 13.1). The SK and SC versions don’t display the Tape 
Deck and Playlist icons found in Audiomedia, but provide instead an addi- 
tional button in the upper-left comer. Clicking on this Mac-to-Sampler icon 
produces a dialog box that lets you transfer the current soundfile (after con- 
figuring the program) to any selected MIDI sampler. The File menu pro- 
vides a Sampler-to-Mac command for importing samples from your MIDI 
sampler to the Macintosh for editing. 

The appearance and stmcture of the Soundfile window is essentially the 
same as described in Chapter 12. The Speaker icon plays the entire sound- 
file, or any selected portion, directly from disk if you’re using Sound Tools. 

Sample-Editing Software 


Figure 13.1 

Sound Designer II 
uses the same kind 
of Soundfile win- 
dow as Audio- 
media. The SC 
version (shown 
here) lacks the Tape 
Deck and Playlist 
icons but adds the 

Otherwise it plays back as much of the soundfile selection as the available 
RAM will hold. The Zoom Box, Pencil, Selection, and Display Scale icons 
all work identically to their counterparts in Audiomedia. 

The Numbered Marker and Text Marker buttons in Audiomedia have been 
consolidated in Sound Designer II into a single icon that incorporates four 
different kinds of markers. The Numbered Marker and Text Marker icons 
work as described in Chapter 12. Below them, two additional icons— the 
Loop Start Marker and the Loop End Marker— let you determine where to 
begin and end a waveform section for looping. 

Once you’ve dragged start and end markers onto the Soundfile display, you 
can listen to your looped sound by using the Speaker icon for playback. At 
this point the odds are extremely high that your loop will need further edit- 
ing to eliminate clicks, pops, or other anomalies that occur at the transition 
point where the looped section repeats itself To handle these problems, 
Sound Designer II provides a Loop window (Figure 13.2) that offers sev- 
eral options for making precise adjustments to your loop’s parameters. The 
window consists of two waveform displays divided by a vertical line. The 



left side shows the loop end and the waveform immediately preceding it, 
while the right side shows the loop start point and the waveform that fol- 
lows. The vertical line represents the actual splice point where playback 
jumps from loop end to loop start. 

Figure 13.2 

The Loop window 
shows the splice 
point between the 
loop end and loop 
start. The arrows at 
the bottom help 
you create a smooth 

To create an effective, natural-sounding loop, you must match the wave- 
form slopes and general shapes on both sides of the display, paying particu- 
lar attention to the transition between the waveforms that occims at the 
splice point. This must have a smooth, continuous appearance to avoid 
unwanted noise or other problems that can result from an abrupt waveform 
change at the splice. 

For help in fine-tuning your start and end points, the Loop window pro- 
vides a set of arrows beneath each half of the display. These arrows let you 
slide either of the waveforms forward or backward to precisely maneuver 
the two displays (and their corresponding markers) into a position for opti- 
mum looping. To increase your speed and efficiency in finding good loop 
points, the Loop window also provides a second set of arrows marked Auto. 
Each of these controls skips the waveform forward or backward to the next 
available point in the sound wave that produces a smooth-looking transition 
with the other display. Although this doesn’t always produce a perfect loop, 
it’s an effective tool for quickly and easily finding useful loop points. 

Clicking the Speaker icon in the upper-left corner of the Loop window lets 
you play back your loop. The Display Scale arrows work the same as the 

Sample-Editing Software 


View Adjustment arrows in the Soundfile window. The third control, the 
Crossfade icon, provides an important option for creating smooth loops, 
especially with difficult soundfiles. Sound Designer’s Crossfade feature 
takes some of the waveform’s characteristics before and after the splice 
point and blends them together in equal amounts to “smooth over” the 
transition area. The Crossfade button produces a dialog box that lets you 
select the type of crossfade (linear or equal power), the type of loop (for- 
ward or backward/forward), and the length of the crossfade region. The 
Information icon rounds out the Loop window’s panel of buttons. Through 
its dialog box, it provides you with relevant information about the current 
loop and soundfile and lets you change some of the parameters direaly. 

Sound Designer II and Audiomedia share the same Graphic EQ feature 
(Figure 12.5) described in the previous chapter. But Soimd Designer also 
provides a Parametric EQ window (Figure 13.3) for more flexibility in 
setting equalization effects. With this window you can select and adjust one 
of five different equalization filters: High Pass, Low Shelf, Peak/Notch, 
High Shelf, and Low Pass. The equalization curve that you create with 
these filters can be saved either with the program or with a specific sound- 
file and can apply to one or two channels. 

Figure 13.3 

Sound Designer II’s 
Parametric EQ 
window offers 
several filter 

Parametric EQ ! 

Soundfile: | Soundfile I 

Channel(s): O Left 

1 O night 

J ® Both 

Filter Type: 


Sample Rate: 32000 Hz 

Center Freq. 


+ HZ Sfa 




l+H. T 



I 5 

Jiun 1 


Ok 4k 8k 12k 

. I . , . H Use for playback 

Preuleui j [ Process j [ Settings j □Bypass 



If you want to try out a soundfile over a range of notes, but you don’t have an 
external MIDI controller handy, you can use Sound Designer’s MIDI Key- 
board window (Figure 13 . 4 ). This on-saeen keyboard lets you play individual 
notes by clicking the appropriate keys. You can record a simple sequence or, if 
you prefer, you can use the Pattern button to play each note sequentially from 
left to right aaoss the keyboard. 

Figure 13.4 
The MIDI Key- 
board window lets 
you play individual 
notes by clicking on 
its keys. 

MIDI Keyboord .. 

[ Record ) [ Play ] [ Pattern ) 

Most of the Audiomedia features described in Chapter 12 also can be found 
in Sound Designer II. The Mix window (Figure 12.4)5 the FFT Window 
(Figure 12.6)5 the Time Compression/Expansion window (Figure 12.7)5 the 
Merge and SR Convert commands5 and the MIDI Preview option all work 
the same. However5 some of the features5 such as Graphic EQ5 SR Con- 
vert5 MIDI Preview5 and the Scrubbing tool5 work only with Audiomedia 
and/or Sound Tools. On the other handj all of the basic editing commands5 
such as Cut5 Copy5 Paste5 Reverse5 Trim5 Invert5 Fade In/Out5 and Normal- 
ize5 are available in all versions of the program. In addition to its own stereo 
format5 Sound Designer II supports Sound Designer (mono)5 Audio IFF5 
and SND Resource file formats. 

si Alchemy 

Passport Designs describes Alchemy as “multimedia sound and sample 
editing software5” which points out the two tasks that this program 
addresses. It is both a sample storage/distribution environment and an 
advanced sound design/editing system. Alchemy can act as a central library 
for storing 16 -bit stereo samples and previewing them direct-from-disk. In 
addition to a long list of supported samplers5 Alchemy is also compatible 
with the Studer Dyaxis digital recording system and the Digidesign NuBus 

Sample-Editing Software 


cards used in Sound Tools and Audiomedia, which provide 16-bit stereo 
playback of Alchemy soundfiles directly from your hard disk. On most 
Macs (other than the Plus, SE, and Classic), Alchemy can also play stereo 
soimdfiles from RAM using 8-bit resolution— without additional hardware. 
Aside from Dyaxis, Sound Designer, and Sound Designer II files. Alchemy 
supports 8-bit and 16-bit Audio IFF, SoundEdit, and SND Resource files. 

The ability to import and export so many dissimilar file formats enables 
Alchemy to funaion as the hub of a versatile storage environment provid- 
ing fast access and editing of audio material. Furthermore, through the use 
of its sophisticated Sample-Rate Conversion algorithm. Alchemy can con- 
vert soundfiles to any desired sample rate (up to 100 kHz) without altering 
the pitch. This allows you to import a file from one sampling device, 
resample the waveform to convert it to another sampler’s specifications, and 
export the file to that sampler. In addition to resampling, you can easily 
convert monophonic samples into stereo and vice versa so that a common 
sound library can be shared by numerous devices, with Alchemy tying all 
branches of the system together into what Passport calls a Distributed 
Audio Network. 

Importing, exporting, and resampling soundfiles is really only the tip of the 
Alchemy iceberg, and for many multimedia producers this will be the least 
exciting aspect of the program. For those who derive their audio material 
from only one or two sources, by far the most important part of this soft- 
ware lies in the realm of editing and digital soimd-processing functions. 

Choosing the Open Special command from the File menu brings up a dia- 
log box (Figure 13.5) with a list of available soundfiles and a Listen button 
that lets you preview any selection direaly from yoim hard disk. If you have 
an Audiomedia card installed, you can audition files in 16-bit stereo. In the 
lower part of the dialog box, an information display provides pertinent data 
about each selected soundfile to help you make a choice. 

When you open a soundfile in Alchemy, it appears as a standard waveform 
display in the Waveform window (Figure 13.6). On the left side of the 
screen, the Alchemy Tool Palette with its myriad icons, buttons, and indica- 
tors provides direct access to most of Alchemy’s editing functions. At the 
bottom of the Palette, four rectangular fields, grouped into a box, supply 



Figure 13.5 
Alchemy’s Open 
Special dialog box 
provides you with 
important data 
about each selected 
soundfile. The 
Listen button lets 
you preview sounds 

Figure 13.6 

Alchemy’s Tool 
Palette and Wave- 
form window 
showing a region 
selected for editing 

D Classic Guitar 


G3 Hard Disk 

D Gated Tom 
D Loop Sine 
D Piuck 
D Slap Bass 



[ tject 1 
[ Desktop ] 

[ Rename ] 
[ Delete ] 


I open J 

[ Listen ] 

D Tine String 
D UoiceOuer 



[ EHit 1 

F1W Type: Audio IFF Sice: 2. 14 sec Key Range: C - 1 -> G 9 

Channels: Mono Rate: 27.778 kHz Unity Key: C 3 

Sampler: Emex Period: 9.21 6 ms SMPTC: 00:00:00.00 

information about the cursor position, seleaion parameters, insertion point, 
and more— depending on the current display. Above this Numeric Display 
box, the View Memory buttons let you save up to eight separate views or 
ranges for each open Waveform window. The memories not only retain the 
selected range or insertion point but also the Zoom level for each view, 
making it easy to navigate your waveform and to rettmi quickly to previous 
editing points with only a single mouse click. 

Sample-Editing Software 


Above the View Memoiy buttons, four Cursor Locator icons let you 
move directly to the beginning or end of the currently selected range or 
loop and automatically center the view in the waveform display at that 
point— without changing the magnification level. The three Waveform 
View icons, above this group, let you zoom in and out or resize any selected 
range to fill the Waveform display. 

The middle of the Palette holds a group of nine Process icons that enable 
you to initiate, with a single mouse click, many of the editing commands 
from the Process and Edit menus. The six Display icons above them allow 
you to change the charaaeristics of the Waveform window and play back 
the current soundfile or any selected part of it. At the top of the Palette, the 
Mode icons let you establish the basic cursor or display mode that you’ll 
use for each editing task. The Tool Palette itself, though not resizable, can 
be moved to any position in the window. Its large seleaion of icons creates 
a graphical interface that makes many of Alchemy’s editing operations both 
direct and intuitive. 

As in Sound Designer, the Waveform window in Alchemy is divided into 
two sections: the Waveform display itself, and the Overview display, which 
shows the entire soundfile in a reduced view. Although you can toggle the 
Overview display off, most of the time you’ll want to use it since it acts as 
an effeaive navigational map to help you locate regions for editing. 

Dragging a seleaion box over a region in the Overview display causes the 
Waveform display to show that region, automatically sized to fill the win- 
dow. Furthermore, whatever part of the soundfile that currently appears in 
the Waveform display is always indicated above in the Overview display 
with a thin, white rectangle that keeps you properly oriented by showing 
you the area that you’re viewing in terms of the total picture. When you 
select a region for editing (by dragging across the waveform), the selected 
region appears with inverse video in the lower display, while the Overview 
display shows the selection with a grayed-out area. 

Alchemy offers all of the standard editing features found in other programs, 
such as Cut, Copy, Paste, Delete, Insert, and Mix. The Blend option, when 
toggled on, automatically crossfades any edit points from the Cut, Paste, 
and Insert commands, while Extract works like Sound Designer’s Trim 



feature by eliminating everything outside of the seleaed area. Both pro- 
grams offer commands to invert and/or reverse a waveform (or any selected 
portion), and they also both provide the same kind of Pencil tool, which 
allows you to draw in waveform alterations. 

To help smooth transitions at edit points. Alchemy provides icons for exe- 
cuting its Fade In, Fade Out, and Crossfade functions. Clicking the appro- 
priate icon accomplishes the fade using one of several “fade slopes” that 
you select ahead of time from a dialog box. All fade t3T3es will continue to 
use the same fade-slope value until you choose another at a later time. 

The Amplitude Scaling funaion increases or decreases the amplitude of a 
waveform (or selected region) by a uniform amount over its duration. This 
is an important tool to help you avoid clipping when you mix two sounds 
together or to ensure a smoother transition when joining soundfiles that 
have different volume levels. Alchemy uses an effective, graphical approach 
to making its amplitude changes. 

Clicking on the Threshold Bars icon in the Tool Palette produces two hori- 
zontal dotted lines, one above and one below the Waveform display. As you 
drag these lines up or down, the Numeric Display indicates the percentage 
of maximum amplitude represented by their positions. When you arrive at 
the desired setting, you simply click the Scale icon to produce the change. 

In addition to its Amplimde Scaling feature. Alchemy offers several power- 
ful and impressive Amplitude Enveloping options. When you click on the 
Amplitude Envelope Mode icon, the waveform becomes grayed out and a 
horizontal “amplitude envelope line” appears at the top of the display. You 
can click anywhere on this line to produce a grab handle, or “knob,” that 
you can drag to any position in the display for creating the desired envelope 
shape (Figure 13.7). This is similar to MacRecorder’s envelope feature in 
its Mfacer window, but Alchemy also offers another option. By clicking the 
Knob/Draw icon, you can toggle off the envelope knobs and toggle on the 
Envelope Draw mode. Then you can use the Pencil tool to hand-draw any 
envelope shape that you like, including one with curved lines. 

Sample-Editing Software 


Figure 13.7 

The Amplitude 
Envelope window 
lets you create an 
envelope in almost 
any shape. 

As if these options weren’t enough, Alchemy offers another, even more 
intriguing, way to change a sound’s envelope. Clicking on the Trace Enve- 
lope icon lets you copy the envelope of any sampled sound and superim- 
pose it on the waveform of another. You might, for instance, capture the 
envelope shape of a plucked instrument, like a guitar, and apply it to the 
sound of a trumpet or clarinet to create an entirely new kind of instrument. 
Recombining envelopes and sounds offers an interesting way to experiment 
with soundfiles and provides a useful tool for quickly capturing the enve- 
lopes of certain kinds of acoustic sounds. 

Once you’ve created your new envelope (by whatever means), you have two 
further options for completing the process. The Amplitude Fit icon auto- 
matically adjusts the waveform to fit the new envelope by increasing or 
decreasing the appropriate parts of the sound. The Amplitude Scale icon 
fits the waveform to the new envelope by making only downward adjust- 
ments to the amplitude, which produces better results with low amplitude 
sounds or those with areas of silence. 

The same kinds of options that Alchemy provides for its Amplitude Envel- 
oping mode are also available for modulating the frequency of a sound. 
Clicking the Frequency Modulation Mode icon causes the waveform to 
appear grayed-out, as in Amplitude Enveloping mode. The vertical axis 
now becomes the frequency scale, which indicates your selected range in 
semitones, and a horizontal “frequency envelope line” appears at the center 



Figure 13.8 

In Frequency 
Modulation mode, 
an adjustable line 
determines how a 
soundfile’s pitch 
will change. 

of the display (Figure 13.8). You can drag this line into any shape you want 
by using as many grab handles as needed, or if you prefer, you can use the 
Pencil tool to draw in a modulation curve that will change your sound’s 
pitch. This “frequency profile” controls the amount of pitch bending that’s 
applied to your soimdfile, with lines sloping above the zero point causing 
the pitch to rise and negative values causing it to drop. 

Frequency Modulation _ Idlj: 









Since Alchemy treats sound data and wave data the same, you can copy the 
waveform from one sound and use it as an envelope to modulate another 
sound’s frequency or amplitude. If, for instance, you copy a simple sine 
wave into the Clipboard and paste it as a frequency envelope over a second 
sound, that sound’s pitch will rise and fall in a regular pattern as described 
by the sine wave’s shape (Figure 13.9). The same sine wave used as an 
amplitude envelope would cause the sound to increase and decrease in vol- 
ume with the same pattern. 

Any waveform can act as an envelope, giving you endless opportunities for 
creating interesting and unusual effects. Since Alchemy doesn’t distinguish 
between waveforms used for envelopes and those used for sound, you can 
establish a large library of natural and artificial envelopes by pasting them 
into windows and saving them in a file. Clearly, the unique enveloping 
features in Alchemy offer great potential for sound designers, musicians, 
and experimenters of all kinds. 

Sample-Editing Software 

237 [ 

Figure 13.9 

Using a sine 
wave to modulate 
the frequency of 
a soundfile 












As you might expect, Alchemy provides a number of useful tools for creat- 
ing efFeaive, smooth-sounding loops. The Loop Cursors icon displays the 
loop beginning and end points with solid vertical lines that you can drag to 
any position in the Waveform display. For fine-tuning your loops, the Loop 
Splice Mode icon changes the Waveform window to a display that, in many 
ways, resembles the Loop window in Sound Designer II (Figure 13.10). 

The dark vertical line down the center of the window represents the loop 
splice point. To the left of this line, you see the loop end and to the right, the 

Figure 13.10 

Alchemy’s Loop 
Splice Mode win- 
dow shows the 
beginning and end 
of a looped section, 
with the splice 
point in the center. 



loop start. A scroU bar beneath each half of the window lets you move the loop 
points slowly in either direction. By clicking in the gray areas of either scroll 
bar you can advance the loop point to the next zero aossing. Since zero cross- 
ings often make good loop points, this feature can save you a lot of time when 
searching for promising splice locations. 

In some cases, you can clean up a loop splice point by choosing the Pencil 
tool and drawing a smooth transition between the two halves of the win- 
dow. You can also achieve an effective loop by using Alchemy’s Crossfade 
Loop command. Before initiating the process, a dialog box lets you specify 
the percentage of the whole loop that you want involved in the crossfade. 
This feature often produces usable results even with otherwise difficult 

Alchemy and Soimd Designer take decidedly different approaches to ana- 
lyzing the harmonic content of waveforms. Although they both use Fast 
Fourier Transforms to generate harmonic spectrum displays, Sound 
Designer uses a 3-D display to show the frequency components of a wave- 
form as they evolve over time. Alchemy, on the other hand, displays its 
harmonic spectrum with a two-dimensional bar graph that shows the har- 
monic content of the entire selected waveform range. 

The Harmonic Spectrum Display window (Figure 13.1 1) indicates ampli- 
tude in decibels along the vertical axis and frequency bands along the hori- 
zontal axis. The scroll bar at the bottom of the window lets you view more 
of the frequency range since it may take quite a few screens to show all of 
the frequency bars. Whereas Sound Designer’s display is perhaps more 
visually interesting and provides some insight into the changing characteris- 
tics of a sound. Alchemy’s display offers one very important and powerful 
advantage: editing. 

In Alchemy’s Harmonic Spectrum display, you can selea any of the fre- 
quency bands by clicking on them, producing a small grab handle at the 
tip of each selected bar. Dragging across a range in the window selects a 
group of frequencies, and using the Shift key lets you selea noncontiguous 
bands. Once you have seleaed one or more frequency bars, you can apply 
the familiar Cut, Copy, Paste, Clear, and Mix commands to perform very 
precise and sophisticated editing. 

Sample-Editing Software 


Figure 13.11 

The Harmonic 
Spectrum Display 
window shows the 
frequency compo- 
nents of a selected 
waveform range. 
Several frequency 
bars on the left 
show the small grab 
handles, which 
indicate they’re 
selected for editing. 

For starters, you can drag the tip of any selected bar up or down to change 
that frequency’s amplitude. You can also choose one or more frequencies 
and cut or clear them, in effect, creating a versatile and highly accurate 
notch filter. Cutting more bands produces a filter with a wider notch, while 
cutting a single frequency allows you to edit your waveform’s harmonic 
content with surgical precision. Additionally, the Clear Above command 
removes frequencies above the selected band, and the Clear Below com- 
mand does the opposite. With these two commands, you can create a vari- 
ety of razor-sharp low-pass and high-pass filters to further shape your 

In some situations, the exacting nature of the Harmonic Spectrum display 
may not make it the best choice for creating digital-filtering effects. As an 
alternative, therefore. Alchemy offers a digital EQ option that provides a 
more gentle-walled cutoff to produce a smoother equalization curve. 
Although the Digital EQ dialog box (Figure 13.12) lacks the high-pass and 
low-pass options found in Sound Designer’s EQ window, the Harmonic 
Spectrum display handles these two filter types well enough. 

Of particular interest to sound designers and postproduaion engineers. 
Alchemy’s sophisticated time-scaling algorithms let you change the dura- 
tion of a selected waveform range— without altering its pitch. With the 
Time Scale dialog box (Figure 13.13), you can type in a desired end time, 
duration, or scale faaor describing the relationship between the scaled and 
the original versions of the file. 



Figure 13.12 

Alchemy*s Digital 
EQ dialog box 

Figure 13.13 
Alchemy’s Time 
Scale feature lets 
you change the 
duration of a sound- 
file region without 
altering its pitch. 

Digital EQ 

Center Freq: 









I )J 

[ Cancel ) 

Filter Type: 

O Loui Shelf 
OHigh Shelf 
(i) Peak/Notch 

Time Scale 

IL ]| 

[ Cancel ] 

Time Scale Factor: 


[ Calculate ] 

End Point: 3.9647 



Duration: 3.2361 



You can also change the pitch of any selected range, with or without chang- 
ing its duration. When you choose the Pitch Shift command, a keyboard 
dialog box appears with a dark gray key representing the sound’s current 
pitch (Figure 13.14). Clicking on a new key transposes the soundflle to a 
different pitch, while the Preserve Duration box lets you specify whether or 
not the shifted soimd’s duration will match the original. 

Alchemy’s documentation is exceptionally fine, marred only by the inexcus- 
able absence of an index. Several excellent tutorials get you working with 
the program right away, and there are a great many pages devoted to ex- 
plaining the basic concepts of sound production, digital audio, and looping. 

Sample-Editing Software 


Figure 13.14 
The Pitch Shift 
dialog box lets you 
transpose a sound- 
file, with or with- 
out changing its 

Pitch Shift 


[ Cancel ] 

si Final Thoughts 

Sound Designer II and Alchemy both provide enough high-powered editing 
features to handle nearly any task that might cross your path. Although they 
overlap each other in many ways, there are other areas in which they part 
company. Alchemy for example, supports only one loop per soimdfile, while 
Sound Designer II lets you create several. Soimd Designer’s harmonic display 
appears in 3-D but only allows viewing, while Alchemy’s 2-D display is fully 
adjustable, allowing a range of precise, harmonic-editing options. While Sound 
Designer offers more kinds of EQ filtering and mixing of up to four soundfiles 
at once. Alchemy provides advanced amplitude and frequency-enveloping 
modes. And Sound Designer II comes in versions that are optimized for Sam- 
pleCell and Audiomedia, while Alchemy stresses its Distributed Audio Net- 
work concept for integrating different samplers into a common editing 
environment. Finally both programs are compatible with Apple’s MIDI 
Manager and provide veiy good documentation. 

nudio Track 


sottn vocc 






r Guitar Shuffle 0:15 

r ^ 1 1 1 

Digital Audio 
Meets MIDI 

t MIDI caught hold among musicians, it quickly evolved into a potent 

tool for composing and performing music in a wide variety of applications. 
By adding samplers and timecode devices to a setup, soimd designers and 
postproduction professionals got in on the act and soon it seemed as if there 
wasn’t anything that MIDI couldn’t do. In fact, MIDI does have a few 
limitations. MIDI instruments are not especially well suited to dealing with 
the human voice, for instance, or with the idiosyncrasies and nuances of 
some solo instruments. 

Many people turned to digital recording to solve these problems. But digi- 
tal audio has its own limitations. Even though you can cut, copy, and paste 
digital soundfiles, you can’t, for example, reorchestrate them or change the 
timing of one instrument relative to another. The complementary nature of 
MIDI and digital audio set the stage for a marriage that has since spawned 
a number of interesting hybrids. The products in this chapter take different 
approaches to combining digital recording with MIDI. One of them might 
be just right for producing your multimedia sovmdtracks. 

si Audio Trax 

Passport Designs introduced its Trax sequencer (see Chapter 6) to fill the 
needs of MIDI composers and multimedia producers who didn’t require 
expensive, high-end programs to create and edit their scores. Now with 



Audio Trax, Passport has taken that same sequencer and added the ability 
to record two channels of 8-bit digital audio in combination with up to 
64 MIDI tracks. 

Audio Trax uses MacRecorder, Voice Impact Pro, or the internal sound- 
input capabilities of the newer Macs to record its audio channels. Although 
this won’t produce CD-quality sound, it can serve quite well for many 
kinds of presentations and offers the opportunity to explore the digital 
audio-MIDI connection without investing in expensive, additional hard- 
ware. Furthermore, Audio Trax is as simple and straightforward in its 
design as its MIDI-only predecessor, so it’s intuitive and easy to use. 

The Transport window in Audio Trax is exactly the same as the one used 
in Trax (Figure 14.1). It appears when you first open the program and pro- 
vides the necessary controls for recording and playing back both the MIDI 
and audio parts of a sequence. Audio Trax also uses the same kind of Track 
Sheet as Trax, and it’s nearly identical except for the addition of the audio 
tracks at the top— indicated by two small speaker icons (Figure 14.2). 

Figure 14.1 

The Transport 
window in Audio 
Trax is the same as 
the one in Trax. 

H#4cur’« B«4t Ctock 

i: COOQ 

Transport lilindoui 


1 Punch 






Current Tim* 
0 :00 :00 :00 

I^PausJ I^^SUopJ 

ICount 1 
1 Click 1 


INT 1 


Figure 14.2 

The Track Sheet in 
Audio Trax resem- 
bles its counterpart 
in Trax except that 
it adds two audio 
tracks at the top. 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


You can enable playback of any combination of MIDI and audio tracks by 
clicking on the corresponding triangles in the Play column. During play- 
back you can turn any MIDI tracks on or off to hear different combinations 
of instruments. The audio tracks, however, must be play-enabled when you 
begin the sequence in order to be heard. Once you begin playback, though, 
you can turn the audio tracks on and off as needed. 

The Record, Solo, Name, and Voliune columns function the same in Audio 
Trax as they do in Trax. The Instrument, Channel, and Loop columns are 
also the same for MIDI data, but are treated differently for the top two 
tracks. For these tracks, the Instrument column shows the length and sam- 
ple rate for each recording, and the Channel column allows you to select 
the left or right audio output channel. Because the single internal speaker 
on most Macintoshes receives only the left audio channel, you can assign 
both audio tracks in the Track Sheet to output to the left channel to ensure 
that all of your audio material is heard. To achieve true stereo playback, you 
must attach the output of your computer, using an adapter cable, to a stereo 
amplifier and speakers. Finally, the Loop column applies only to MIDI 
data because you can’t loop the audio tracks in this program. 

To make an audio recording, you simply click on the Record column in 
front of track 1 or 2 in the Track Sheet. A small dot appears, indicating that 
the track is record-enabled. When you click the Record button in the Trans- 
pon window, recording proceeds until you click Stop. Audio Trax saves 
each sequence as a separate MIDI file, along with one or two audio files, 
all sharing a common prefix. 

For setting additional recording parameters, the Audio Setup dialog box 
(Figure 14.3) lets you selea one of two sampling rates and provides infor- 
mation on available recording time. An Input Level meter helps you opti- 
mize recording levels, and two Audio Start columns let you specify where 
in the sequence you want recording to begin for each track. This can elimi- 
nate long stretches of recorded silence at the beginning of a piece, which 
results in added noise and wasted memory. You can also use these settings 
to shift the audio tracks in relation to one another or to their related MIDI 



Figure 14.3 

The Audio Setup 
dialog box provides 
additional param- 
eter settings and 
information for 
recording audio. 

Rudio Setup 

Input Sampling Rate 
® 22K 

Rudio Start Location 
Track I Track 2 


Measure 3 

Input leuel 

Clock [? 


Rudio Recording Time on Hard Disk: 
I minute 25.0 seconds 

II )l 

[ Cancel ) 

Once you have recorded an audio track, you can view and edit the sound- 
file in the Audio window, where it appears as a waveform accompanied by 
several icons (Figure 14.4). In the upper-left comer of the window, the 
Eraser tool allows you to erase audio material by dragging across an area. 
Next to that, the black Speaker icon plays back the entire audio track or any 
selected portion of it, and the Arrow tool lets you select regions to cut, 
copy, and paste. With the white Speaker icon, you can change the display 
from one audio track to another, while the field next to it allows you to 
switch audio channels. 

To help improve the quality of a recorded soundfile. Audio Trax provides 
three options on its Audio menu that you can apply to any waveform or 
selected region. These are all destmctive edits that you can’t undo, so you 
need to approach them with some caution. 

The Normalize command increases the amplitude of a waveform to maxi- 
mize its level without clipping. This can be a valuable tool for improving 
the sound quality of your output system, but you have to be careful when 
using it because Normalize multiplies any recorded noise along with the 
desired sounds. 

The Gain command lets you increase or decrease the amplitude of a wave- 
form by a percentage of the soundfile’s current level. This is especially 
valuable for matching the overall levels of different sections of a waveform 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


Figure 14.4 
The Audio win- 
dow provides a 
waveform display 
and several tools. It 
is shown here with 
measure 5 selected 
for editing. 

and for adjusting entire soundfiles. When using the Gain command, you 
must be careful not to produce too large an increase in amplitude or it 
could result in clipping. 

The Noise Gate command helps you eliminate the unwanted low-level 
noise that frequently occurs between sections of music or dialogue. With 
the Noise Gate dialog box, you can enter a threshold level at which the 
Gate effect becomes aaivated. Audio Trax will then eliminate any audio 
material that falls below that level. This can help to clean up a recording by 
removing distracting background sounds between pauses in a soundfile, but 
you must be careful not to choose a threshold that is too high or the effea 
will be quite noticeable. 

Any sequence data, either audio or MIDI, that you record with Audio Trax 
can appear as one-measure units in the Song Editor window (Figure 14.5). 
This is the same Song Editor that Trax uses except that this display 
includes the two audio tracks at the top. Measures that contain MIDI data 
appear as small black boxes, while the audio data appears in similar boxes 
with a waveform drawn inside them. White boxes represent empty mea- 
sures. You can select sections of the sequence for editing by dragging 
through both of the audio tracks or all of the MIDI tracks. You can also 
select individual tracks from each section, all of the tracks from both sec- 
tions, or groups of MIDI tracks. Once they are selected, you can use com- 
mands such as Cut, Copy, Paste, and Delete to rearrange the structure of 
the sequence. 



Figure 14.5 
The Song Editor 
window shows the 
presence of both 
MIDI and audio 
data in one-measure 


uii; Song Editor 



^ M^rktr 1 , 

^ M*rk#r 3 

1 4 8 

12 1.6 . 20 

.24 28 32 


BB BB D B3 B8 d BB m 

;G9 C2 GS CB C3 ^9 BB ibi qI pci 




EB B9 BSB Ba d d 






BB C3 ^3 Hi BB ^3 C3 BB HI (3 C3 HI IB BB 












Choosing Insert Measures from the Edit menu opens a dialog box that lets 
you add empty measures to any track or combination of tracks (Figure 14.6). 
You can then fill these empty measures with data that you’ve copied to the 
Clipboard. If you paste data onto measures that aren’t empty, the new mate- 
rial replaces the old. Using the Mix Data command, however, lets you 
merge the new with the old, though you can only mbc MIDI with MIDI 
and audio with audio. 

The Paste Audio From command enables you to paste audio files from other 
sources, such as other Audio Trax scores or 8-bit Audio IFF files from pro- 
grams like SoundEdit. If the new material is longer than your sequence, the 
sequence will automatically expand to accommodate it. The Mix Audio From 

Figure 14.6 
The Insen Mea- 
sures dialog box lets 
you add empty 
measures to any 

Insert Measure 

Insert Q meosuretsi before measure 14. 

O Rll MIDI and Rudio tracks 
(§) MIDI Trocks Only 
O Rudio Trocks Only 
O Only on MIDI track 
O Only on Rudio Track 

[ Cancel ] 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


command works the same way except that the new data gets blended with the 
old instead of replacing it. 

The MIDI-sequencer part of Audio Trax functions the same as in Trax and 
provides the same editing options and tools, along with an identical Step 
Editor window (Figure 14.7). Both programs also use the same Conductor 
window, but in Audio Trax if you change the tempo after recording your 
audio, you will lose sync between the MIDI and audio because the tempo 
of the audio tracks can’t be changed. It’s best to record the MIDI sequence 
first and make stue that the tempos are satisfactory before adding the audio 
portions. MIDI files created with Audio Trax are fully compatible with 
Master Tracks Pro 5 and Trax, and the audio files can be imported into 
other programs, such as Alchemy, for further editing. 

Figure 14.7 

Trax and Audio 
Trax use the same 
Step Editor window 
and share the same 
MIDI editing 

m \ Deck 

Digidesign’s Audiomedia card has brought digital, direa-to-disk recording 
within the reach of a great many Macintosh users. But in spite of its sophisti- 
cated editing capabilities and high-quality audio, it can’t, on its own, satisfy the 
needs of a fully integrated audio-production system. To do that you’ll need 
Deck— Digidesign’s multitrack recording and playback program. With Deck 
you can record, process, and mix digital audio and synchronize it with a MIDI 
sequence to create stereo, CD-quality master recordings. 



All of Deck’s primary functions are handled by its main display, which fills 
the screen when you open the program (Figure 14.8). It is designed to look 
and operate like a typical four-track tape recorder, but with several signifi- 
cant advantages, including an automated mixer and two on-board digital 
effects per track. The transport controls, in the lower-right corner, work 
much like the buttons on a standard tape deck. Below these controls, the 
eight Time buttons let you store “autolocate memories,” which enable 
you to return instantly to any specific time within the current recording— 
whether Deck is playing or not. 

Figure 14.8 

Deck’s main win- 
dow looks and 
operates like a four- 
track tape-deck/ 
mixer combination. 
It is shown here in 
Playback mode, 
with a different 
effect selected for 
each track. 

Above the Transport buttons, the Master Counter indicates elapsed time in 
SMPTE format (hours; minutes: seconds; frames), giving a resolution of 
one-thirtieth of a second. The Master Output faders that sit above the 
Coimter let you control the overall output for the current recording, while 
the Master VU meters indicate the output levels. The four smaller VU 
meters display the individual output levels for each of the tracks. 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 

251 [ 

The left half of the main display is devoted to these input/output modules, 
which represent Deck’s four digital tracks. Each of the channels can operate 
in one of two modes: Record or Playback. In Playback mode, each module 
provides a Channel fader (to control playback volume relative to the other 
tracks), a Stereo Pan fader (to adjust the placement of the track within the 
stereo image) and a Solo, Mute, and Record Mode button. 

At the top of each module, two boxed areas house the EQ and effects con- 
trols that you can apply to each independent track. You can elect to have 
two bands of parametric EQ or one band of EQ and one other effect by 
making a selection with the Effects pop-up menu. For each chosen effect, 
the display changes to provide the appropriate control sliders for setting the 
necessary parameters. In all cases (except the ModDelay effect, which has 
no EQ), the audio signal is equalized before it passes through the other 
effect. The Defeat button lets you turn off the effect and equahzation 
on the corresponding track— a useful tool for making before and after 

Deck’s Parametric EQ feature provides three types of filters: low-shelf, 
high-shelf, and notch filter. Sliders allow you to adjust the frequency range 
and amplitude-boost/cut range for each type. The Stereo-ize effect makes a 
pseudostereo image from a monaural source by creating a delayed copy of 
the original and letting you pan the two versions to the left and right. Deck 
also provides a Delay effect and a Chorus effect, as well as a Stereo Modu- 
lated Delay (ModDelay) effect, which you can use to set up a different 
modulated delay on each channel. 

Deck applies its audio-effects processing in a nondestruaive way so that 
the original recording is not altered. If you want the effects to become a 
permanent part of a track, you can “bounce” the track onto another track. 
When you copy a recording from one track to another, the processed sound 
of the first track gets recorded onto the destination track. This allows you to 
take the new recording and apply additional effects if you need them. 

If you don’t have any empty tracks. Deck can bounce a track onto itself 
It can also take four tracks and bounce them down to two, allowing you to 
build up a recording without worrying about leaving empty destination 



tracks. With Deck’s Bounce To Disk dialog box (Figure 14.9), you can mix 
tracks internally, and because everything is handled in the digital domain, 
there is no degradation of sound quality. 

Nondestructive processing makes Deck work like an analog tape recorder/ 
mixer combination, and it gives you the opportunity to try different effects 
without changing your original recording. There are times, however, when 
you’ll want to alter the audio data on a track to improve the recording itself. 
To this end. Deck provides three types of destructive processes that you can 
apply to individual tracks. The Normalize function adjusts a recording to 
achieve the maximum allowable level without clipping. This can help im- 
prove the signal-to-noise ratio. The Hum Removal function filters out the 
60-Hz hum that often appears in analog signals, and the Noise Gate works 
the same as in Audio Trax to eliminate ambient noise below a selected 

Figure 14.9 

The Bounce To 
Disk dialog box 

Bounce To Disk 

1 ox ]| 

[ Cancel ] 

Output Format: 

File Options: 

O Mono 

(S)Lilhole File 

(•) Stereo 

O Region Only 

Destination Tracks: 


Left/Mono: | 4 

Begin: 00:00:03:25 

Right: | 1 

End: 00:00:46:20 

Making a recording with Deck is relatively easy because the procedure 
closely follows the one used with analog equipment. When you click the 
Record Mode button on one of the tracks, the Playback Module changes 
appearance and becomes highlighted, indicating that the track is ready for 
recording (Figure 14.10). The Channel fader and Stereo Pan fader are now 
used for making adjustments while monitoring the recording. In the upper 
half of the Record Module, an Input Level fader and VU meter enable you 
to set the proper recording level, and the Input Selector buttons at the top let 
you choose which input channel or channels will be recorded onto the track. 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


Figure 14.10 

Tracks 2 and 4 
are shown here in 
Record mode. 
Notice that the 
effects controls 
have been replaced 
by the Input Level 

To begin recording, simply click the Record and Play buttons in the 
Transport panel and then click Stop when you’re finished. If the record- 
ing sounds fine, you can add tracks in the same way while listening to 
what you’ve already done. If you plan to combine your digital recording 
with a MIDI sequence later, you must remember to use the MIDI Metro- 
nome option (Figure 14.1 1), so you can maintain sync between the audio 
and MIDI music. This will provide you with the bar and beat frame- 
work that MIDI uses and let you know the MIDI tempo as you perform. 

Aside from its normal Record mode. Deck offers three additional record- 
ing options that you can access by clicking one of the buttons above the 
Transport controls. The Sound-on-Sound (SoS) button lets you record onto 
any track without replacing the original audio track. Instead, the original 
and the new material are mbced together with no loss of fidelity and with- 
out requiring additional hard-disk space. 

With the Loop Mode button, you first designate a beginning and ending point 
in the coimters directly above the button. Deck will then play that seaion over 



Figure 14.11 

dialog box 

MIDI Metronome O On 
(ft) Off 

Doiiinbeat Note 



Beat Note 
(PlaH-> I I 3 T 


^ Modem 
O Printer 

MIDI Channel Time Signature Tempo (BPM) 





)| I 



and over to allow you to rehearse a passage before recording. Combining 
Sound-on-Sound with Loop mode lets you make drum-machine-style record- 
ings where you can add new audio with each pass through the area— without 
losing the previous recording. The third button. Automated Punch In/Out, 
uses the Begin and End counters to enable you to insert new audio into a 
specific area of a previously recorded passage. 

When recording engineers mix down a multitrack recording to stereo, 
they use their fingers and both hands to manipulate the controls. This 
sometimes requires an exceptional sense of timing and coordination, and 
complicated mixes are often difficult to reproduce. To alleviate this prob- 
lem, high-end mixing boards provide automated mixdown capabilities. 
On-screen mixers are even more problematic because you can only operate 
one control at a time with a mouse, so Deck has adopted some of the same 
automation features found on professional mixers. 

Deck’s automation process incorporates three concepts: mixer states, snap- 
shots, and transition times. A tnixer state is a picture of the current position 
of every fader on screen, including EQ, pan, level, and effects. You assign 
each of these mixer states to one of the eight buttons in the lower-left cor- 
ner of the window. From then on, you can instantly recall the complete 
fader configuration of each state by clicking the appropriate button. A snap- 
shot is like a mixer state that only occurs once and is not associated with one 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 




of the mixer-state buttons. Through its snapshot feature, Deck can support 
as many as 200 different mixer states, including the 8 assigned to buttons. 
Transition times are used to create smooth fader motions between any 
snapshots or mixer states. 

To record an automated-mixer session, you first need to set up the most 
important mixer states and assign them to buttons. Then you click the 
Automation Record button and begin playing back your audio recording. 

As the recording proceeds, you can click the different mixer-state buttons at 
the appropriate times to create the desired combinations of fader positions. 
You can also include other configurations and capture them with the snap- 
shot button. When you’re through, you can go back and edit the placement 
of the mixer states so that they occur exactly where you want them. If the 
resulting fader movements seem too abrupt for your recording, you can use 
the Transition feature to create smoother fades between the automation 

Deck’s MIDI-handling capabilities are not at the level of a fiill-featured 
sequencer program, but Deck does offer a substantial number of basic 
MIDI functions, including the ability to import and export Standard MIDI 
Files. In most cases, the best way to use Deck for combining MIDI with 
digital audio is to first develop your MIDI sequence using one of the pro- 
grams described in Chapters 5 and 6. Then you can import the sequence 
into Deck and add the audio tracks. Although Deck can’t directly open 
dedicated MIDI sequences from programs like Vision, Master Tracks 
Pro 5, and Performer, these sequencers can all save their files in Standard 
MIDI File format, making Deck compatible with a wide range of 

If you first compose your MIDI music, import it into Deck, and then add 
the audio tracks, you can be sure that the synchronization between the two 
music sources will be maintained throughout the piece. If you choose to 
work in the other direction— recording audio first and then adding MIDI— 
you’ll likely encounter problems unless you record your audio tracks using 
the MIDI Metronome to provide a tempo and reference source. 

Deck’s MIDI Play/Record area (to the left of the Channel VU meters) 
allows you to record and play back as many as 32 new MIDI tracks. With 
the Track Status indicator, you can choose to record, play, solo, or mute any 



tracks and the Mute button, in the MIDI Play section, lets you mute all of 
the tracks at once. As in its audio section. Deck also offers sound-on-sound 
and punch-in/punch-out recording options for MIDI. Additional editing 
features, such as transposing, channelizing, and filtering MIDI data, are 
available in the Transform MIDI Track dialog box (Figure 14.12). Deck 
also lets you control its faders from an external MIDI device, like a key- 
board controller, by switching to its MIDI Map mode, where you can 
assign individual faders to specific control sources. 

Figure 14.12 

The Transform 
MIDI Track dialog 
box provides addi- 
tional editing 

Transform MIDI Track 

® Copy ^ 

O Merge Track # |j | 

to Track # |2 | 

O Delete 

(S) Transform all MIDI channels 

□ Remoue Control Change 
^ Remoue Pitch Bend 

□ Remoue Mono Rftertouch 
^ Remoue Poly Rftertouch 

O Don't Transform MIDI channel: nj — i 
O Only Transform MIDI channel: 

□ Channelize To: [1 1 

□ Transpose by: |o I [l 

DK ]| [ Cancel ) 

Every time you complete and save a recording project with Deck, it saves it 
as a document called a Session. A Session file contains one MIDI file, one 
Automation file, and a list of the soundfiles for the four digital audio tracks. 
The Session file also retains all of the mixer state and Time button settings 
along with the configuration of all EQ and effects buttons and faders. 

The audio soundfiles themselves reside outside of the Session file and are 
accessed when a Session is opened. Deck allows you to load any mono- 
phonic Sound Designer II files directly onto any of its four tracks. You can 
also use earlier Sound Designer files and Audio IFF files, but these must be 
imported into the program. This process involves making a copy of the file 
in the correct format, which requires additional hard-disk space and takes 
more time. 

If lowering your storage demands is important. Deck provides a real- 
time 2:1 compression algorithm that reduces the amount of audio data 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


needed during recording. Compressed Sessions, however, cannot use 
Deck’s real-time effects and EQ processing features. 

Deck and Audio Trax represent two opposite approaches to combining digital 
audio and MIDI. With Audio Trax, Passport Designs took a popular 
sequencer program and added some basic audio recording and editing capabil- 
ities. Digidesign, on the other hand, created Deck as a powerful multitrack 
recording program that included a number of basic sequencing features 
enabling it to synchronize its digital audio recordings with MIDI music. 

Which of these approaches best suits your needs will depend on how 
much money you can afford to spend, what level of audio quality you 
demand, what method of composition and music production you most 
often employ, and how the music will eventually be distributed. 

The next group of programs all take the approach of starting with a 
professional-level sequencer and adding advanced audio-recording and 
editing features. 

I studio Vision 

Opcode Systems was the first MIDI software company to create a program 
that combined the powerful features of a high-end sequencer with the ability to 
record and edit CD-quality direct-to-disk audio. Developed in conjunction with 
Digidesign, Studio Vision uses the Audiomedia card (or Sound Tools) to per- 
form its digital audio recording, so the sound quality, storage demands, and 
hardware requirements are the same (see Chapter 12). It also provides all of the 
same MIDI-handling capabilities as Vision, Opcode’s highly successful, pro- 
level sequencer. In fact, the two programs are so much alike that Studio Vision 
comes with the Vision owner’s manual and simply adds another seaion to 
cover the audio aspeas of the program. 

When you open Studio Vision, the same three windows appear as in 
Vision: the Control Bar, the Sequence window, and the File window (Fig- 
ure 14.13). Only the telltale Audio heading in the menu bar reveals that 
this sequencer has something extra. This level of similarity between the two 
programs means that if you’re already familiar with Vision, you’ll feel right 



at home with Studio Vision. If you’re starting from scratch, though, be 
prepared to spend some time with the owner’s manual because this pro- 
gram does have a bit of a learning curve. 

The people at Opcode have done an excellent job of integrating audio record- 
ing and editing into Studio Vision. As much as possible, they’ve maintained a 
consistent feel for the way that MIDI data and audio data are handled. Many 
of the editing operations that work on MIDI also apply to audio events, and 
the same editing environments that Vision offers for MIDI are available here 
for audio as well. For a more detailed look at the MIDI-sequencing component 
of Studio Vision, see the section on Vision in Chapter 5. 

Figure 14.13 

Studio Vision uses 
the same Control 
Bar, Sequence 
window, and File 
window as Vision. 








11 • 3*183 
00 : 00 : 21 :06 


lb Sp«ce Return 

IReplacellCountoff' 2 baral 
I □ Queue □LoopRecotd 

^3 COMP 

J -120.00 


Seq. Files 

A > Verse 
B • Chorus 
C « Bridge 
D « strings 
E • brass 
F • Intro 
G • Ostinato 

H • 
I • 
J • 
K • 
L • 

n • 







N « 
0 • 
P • 
0 • 
R • 
S • 
T • 
U • 

V • 

V • 
X • 












Y • Parts List 
Z • The Song 


Seq fl: Uerse 

: 0. 

SVNC Speed OFFSET 00:00:00:00.00 


Meter 4/4 

SeqLen Stirt 

16 II 1 .0 


\ r Tempo 120.00 || 

R»cUuteSo1o Loop Length Instrument 

1 • 



: 2 : 



r"4 : 




: 4 : 


A • 


: 8 : 




: i*"”: 






Audio- 1 


PLAY DAtks K iDDurs b SNR 
QUANTIZE / i / 0 

Studio Vision incorporates audio data into a sequence just as it does with 
MIDI. To begin recording, you first selea a track (in the Sequence win- 
dow) where you want your audio data to appear and then record-enable that 
track by clicking in its Record box. Next you open the Record Monitor 
window (Figure 14.14), which provides two VU-style meters (with clipping 
indicators) to measure your input levels along with a Thru option that lets 
you listen to the audio signal as you record. To designate which audio chan- 
nel to use for recording, you must click the appropriate check box under 
the Record heading— Studio Vision allows mono or stereo recording— 
and name the soundfile that will hold the audio data. 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


Figure 14.14 

The Record Moni- 
tor window lets you 
measure input levels 
and select channels 
for recording. 

Figure 14.15 

In Studio Vision 
each waveform 
display appears in 
the Graphic win- 
dow just above the 
Strip Chart in an 
area called the 
“audio pane.” This 
allows you to view 
and edit MIDI, 
audio, and continu- 
ous controller data 

I Record Monitor 

-21 15 9 3 


Rec Instrument 

Record File 



Q Audio- 1 

Vocals left 

R niuiiiui 


S Audio-2 

Vocals right 

□ Thru El Link 

E}Mc Level: 7 

□Auto Compact 

When you’re ready to start, click the Record button in the Control Bar 
(you can use the same Replace, Punch, and Overdub modes as for MIDI) 
and click Stop when you’re done. While making your recording, you can 
listen to any MIDI tracks already in the sequence, along with the metro- 
nome and any previously recorded audio material. You can also record 
MIDI and audio data simultaneously. If you’re unhappy with your perfor- 
mance, you can undo the recording to reclaim the disk space and try again. 

Each time you complete a recording. Studio Vision creates a waveform 
display that appears at the bottom of the Graphic window in what Opcode 
calls an “audio pane” (Figure 14.15). Since this can take several seconds to 
complete, you have the option to disable the waveform drawing to keep the 
recording session moving along. Later, when you need it for editing, you 
can have the program draw the waveform without any problem. 



Studio Vision’s audio pane is actually just an extension of its Graphic 
window, where you can view one or more “audio instruments”— a term 
used by Opcode to describe how audio data relates to a sequence in Studio 
Vision. Each recorded audio event appears in the Graphic window once 
you assign it a name. There are slots for up to 16 audio instruments, each 
of which has a volume and pan setting associated with it. Audio instru- 
ments function somewhat like separate audio tracks within a sequencer 
track, and each appears in a different vertical layer in the audio pane (Fig- 
ure 14.16). If you record a performance in stereo and check the Link option 
in the Record Monitor window, the waveform display will show both chan- 
nels in a single instrument layer. This indicates that they represent a single 
audio instrument and will therefore respond as a unit to any editing 

Figure 14.16 

Each audio instru- 
ment appears on its 
own layer in the 
audio pane. Linked 
stereo recordings 
occupy a single 

You can use any audio track in as many sequencer tracks as you like, and 
by using the Audio Instrument window, you can mute or solo each one 
individually. If you have a color monitor, you can also assign a different 
color to each audio instrument so that the different waveforms appear in 
different colors in the Graphic window. Continuous data drawn in the 
Strip Chart also reflects the color of the corresponding audio instrument. 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


All of this offers the potential for some impressive data displays, because 
any Studio Vision track can include multiple MIDI channels and audio 
instruments in a single window. 

Once a waveform appears in the audio pane, you can manipulate it in a 
surprising number of ways. Of coiuse, you can select all or part of any 
audio event’s waveform and apply the usual Cut, Copy, and Paste com- 
mands, but that’s only the beginning. You can easily drag any waveform to 
the right or left to change its start time. You can also drag an event up or 
down into a different layer in the window to change the instrument that’s 
assigned to it. Then the new instrument’s volume and pan settings will 
apply to that audio data. Option-dragging a waveform creates a copy of 
the event, which can occupy the same or a different instrument track. 

By creating several copies of an event and overlapping, or “shingling,” 
them on a single instrument track, you can create a stutter effect. That’s 
because Studio Vision will play only the exposed part of each event, cutting 
off playback of the first event when the second event starts and so forth. 

You can change the amount of overlap anytime you want by dragging 
any of the events forward or backward. 

If you want to hear two events simultaneously, you must assign them to 
different audio instruments; they will appear on different layers in the 
Graphic window. Studio Vision is limited, however, to only two playback 
channels, so you can only hear two audio instruments at one time. If more 
than two events occur in the same time range, the program will play the 
first two events until a third event occurs. At that point the event with 
the earliest start time will get cut off by the most recent event. 

Studio Vision offers several ingenious methods for subdividing its wave- 
forms. With the Retain command, you can select an area in the middle of a 
waveform and clear the data on either side of it, leaving only your selection. 
The Separate command provides two ways of splitting up an audio event 
into smaller parts: You can drag across a portion of the audio event and 
separate it from the rest of the waveform, or you can simply click at any 
desired locations in the waveform to create separation points. If you play an 
audio event right after you separate it into smaller segments, it will sound 
unchanged; but on the screen each segment appears in its own box, indica- 



ting that it is now a self-contained audio event that you can move and edit 
independently of the other segments. 

Cutting into a waveform can often cause annoying clicks or pops at the 
edit point if you happen to catch a sound wave at a high-amplitude part of 
its cycle. To help reduce this problem. Studio Vision applies a zero-crossing 
function that nudges your selection point to the nearest zero crossing before 
making the separation. 

The Strip Silence command, one of Studio Vision’s most impressive fea- 
tures, lets you eliminate areas of audio that fall below a specified amplitude. 
It’s actually a sophisticated noise gate that opens a dialog box where you 
enter a threshold level and a signal period. Then, when you choose Strip 
Silence, the program automatically clears any audio material that falls 
below the threshold level and lasts longer than the specified duration. 
Silence that lasts for a shorter time than the signal period (such as a brief 
pause) is left alone to prevent the audio from sounding unnatural. The 
remaining parts of the waveform appear on-screen as separate audio 
events that you can edit further (Figure 14.17). 

Figure 14.17 

A waveform 
shown before and 
after applying the 
Strip Silence 





Sequence R. Tra 

M- ^ 

ick 1 

DR 1 • 1 • 0 FI 
nuiti:An DSd 


M ^ 



Audio- 1 _ 






. ' » Stri 

p Chart. 

:i ■ M . H 

□ Ex« 



You might, for instance, record a section of narration and use the Strip 
Silence command to separate the waveform into the individual words and 
phrases. You could then rearrange the sentences, eliminate or replace cer- 
tain words, and move any phrase forward or backward in time to align it 
with a specific musical event. Or you might record a drum part and use the 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


Strip Silence feature to divide it into separate beats, which you could then 
rearrange or move as needed. In fact, Studio Vision offers the same Quan- 
tize option for audio as it offers for MIDI, so you can align individual audio 
events to your MIDI music with any level of precision that you like. You 
can also combine the Strip Silence command with a zero-crossing option 
to ensure noise-free separation points. 

The ability to separate audio events into segments opens the door to all 
kinds of postproduction possibilities. You can, for example, choose your 
best three or four performances of a musical passage and assign them to 
different audio instruments. Then you can select your favorite parts from 
each and assemble them into a perfect performance (Figure 14.18). Studio 
Vision even lets you audition your choices with its Play Seleaed option so 
that you can hear how they will soimd together before you combine them 
into a single track. 

Figure 14.18 

By selecting the 
best parts from 
different recordings, 
you can assemble a 
perfect performance. 
Studio Vision lets 
you audition your 
selections (shown 
here in white) before 
committing to a 
final mix. 


Sequence n, Track 1 . 

1 ' 



4 .-,.,, 1 -. . t { t 


vjuKaun 1 • 1 • u c-x 1 ivMO i 

MIDI nultirAli CjSciloll 13 || 
7 9 1 i 


S«x Solo 1 _ 

OX» f 

Ux Solo 2 

Sox Solo 3 

1 . y Strip Chart 

□ Exact 


It’s important to note that nearly all of Studio Vision’s editing operations are 
nondestruaive. This means that no matter how often you move your audio 
events back and forth and no matter how many times you cut apart and recom- 
bine your waveforms^ you will not alter the original soundfiles nor consume 
any additional hard-disk space. When you edit wave data in Studio Vision, you 
are not changing the raw audio data on the hard disk; you’re simply providing 
instruaions, or pointers, that tell the program which pan of a sotmdfile to play 



and when to start and stop. Each time you change or add an edit, the program 
just issues a new set of pointers. This allows you to return to the original 
soundfile at any time and stan all over again if you’re unhappy with your 

To change the few editing parameters not available in the Graphic window. 
Studio Vision provides a List window (Figure 14.19) that displays a chrono- 
logical list of all audio, MIDI, and text events in a track. Audio events 
appear with their start and end times indicated in bars, beats, and units (or 
SMPTE time) along with their “velocities.” Studio Vision uses the term 
velocity to maintain the analogy with MIDI data, but obviously audio 
events don’t correspond exactly to the kind of data that originates from a 
keyboard controller. In this case, velocity simply refers to the initial volume 
level at which an audio event is played back. The events all default to the 
maximum value of 127, but you can easily lower this amount if necessary. 
The Volume data, also shown in the List window, affects the audio event 
continuously as it plays and allows you to fade a soimd in or out. The Pan 
setting indicates the audio event’s placement in the stereo field, and you 
can adjust it over time as well. 

Figure 14.19 

The List window 
can display both 
MIDI and 
audio data. 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 

265 [ 

For real-time control of your audio tracks. Studio Vision provides the 
same Faders window that Vision uses (Figure 14.20). In Studio Vision you 
can assign any of the 32 faders to control either volume or panning for any 
of the individual audio instruments. Or you can assign faders to transmit 
continuous controller data to your MIDI devices. 

Figure 14.20 

Studio Vision 
provides 32 faders 
for real-time control 
of MIDI and audio 

□ : ^ Faders 


* P2 * 






Volume (7) 








Volume (7) 


. ...... 



Volume (7) 



> Sax Solo 1 

Volume ^7) 



i 14 

> Vocals 

Volume (^7) 






> Vocals 

Pan (10) 







> Brass 

Volume (7) 





> Brass 

Pan (10) 





Volume (7) 






Pan (10) 



40 - 


OPcv 0Send Q 


After you’ve recorded several soundfiles and edited a niunber of audio 
events, you’ll find it useful to organize your files and, if necessary, to free 
up some disk space. To help you deal with these and other tasks. Studio 
Vision includes the File Management window (Figure 14.21). This window 
displays the data that is stored in each audio file as a gray rectangular bar. 
The white sections represent areas of unused data-in other words, parts of 
the soundfile that are not referenced by the current sequence file. Along the 
top of each bar, a line of text provides additional information about each 
soundfile, such as its file type, sample rate, and size. 

After examining your files, you can choose the Compact command to elimi- 
nate any audio data that is not being used. The Consolidate command takes 
all of the referenced data from various files and splices them together into 
a single audio file, and the Delete File command removes a specified file 
completely. Unlike the editing operations described earlier, these commands 
do change the audio data on your hard disk, so you should use them with 
some caution. 

Studio Vision can impon soundfiles in one of four formats: Sound 
Designer, Soimd Designer II, Audio IFF, and Dyaxis. The program itself 



Figure 14.21 

The File Manage- 
ment window helps 
you organize your 
audio files and free 
up disk space. 

File Sample “of 
Tgpe Rate Chans 

[ OK 

► Bridge 

Sd2f 44100 

Total Events: 1 

Total Events: 5 

Total Events: 3 

Total Events : 2 

Total Events: 3 C 

Sd2f 441Q0 

Total Events: 3 

Sd2f 44100 

0.721Mb 0279Mb 39g 

1.086Mb 0.401Mb 37;; 

stores all of its audio files in Sound Designer II format, and it allows you to 
import either selected regions or playlists— without the playlist crossfades. 
While you’re working with audio events in Studio Vision, you can, at any 
time, apply extensive editing operations to a waveform by using the Edit 
SoundFile option on the Audio menu. This links you directly to Sovmd 
Designer II (assuming that you have it), where the selected waveform 
will appear, ready for editing. 

Unlike Studio Vision, Sound Designer’s edit operations are destructive, so 
it’s important to work with a backup copy or you may lose pans of your 
audio file. Also, Studio Vision records stereo soimds as two separate audio 
files, while Sound Designer II records the left and right channels into a 
single file, interleaving the audio from both sides. Although you can sepa- 
rate the two halves of a Soimd Designer II stereo event, the procedure is 
not as straightforward as with a Studio Vision file. This makes it a bit more 
cumbersome to edit the two channels of a Sound Designer file independently. 

If you need to synchronize your sequence to a tape recorder or VCR, you 
can use SMPTE timecode with Studio Vision along with the Lock Audio 
to Tape option and the Tape Calibration option. These features ensure the 
proper playback of MIDI and audio data in spite of minor variations in 
the tape speed. 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


Studio Vision is impressive in its power and versatility. The MIDI and 
audio sections can each stand alone as complete programs, and in combina- 
tion with Sound Designer II, you have a postproduction environment that 
offers seemingly endless possibilities. The program takes some time to get 
used to, but in the long run you’ll find it well worth the effort. 

I Cubase Audio 

Cubase, from Steinberg/Jones, is a complex, pro-level sequencer with some- 
thing for everybody. Following the maxim that bigger is better, the program 
includes numerous viewing and editing windows, a drum track editor, a 
mixer, a music-generating function, and more. To further enlarge its list of 
features, Cubase has now evolved into a second version, Cubase Audio, that 
also offers digital audio recording and editing. 

Like Studio Vision, Cubase Audio uses the popular Audiomedia card (or 
Sound Tools) from Digidesign. The MIDI sequencer part of the program 
has been somewhat beefed up, but remains largely the same as in Cubase. 
Because the structural and organizational aspeas of this program differ 
from those in other sequencers, it may take a while to get used to Cubase 
Audio if you’ve been using another program. For a more detailed descrip- 
tion of how the program handles MIDI data, see the section on Cubase 
in Chapter 5. 

As much as possible, Cubase Audio strives to handle its audio data the same as 
it handles MIDI. All recording and editing operations begin with the Arrange 
window (Figure 14.22), which closely resembles its counterpart in Cubase. 

The window consists of two halves. On the left, a list of the different tracks 
appears along with pertinent information about MIDI channel, instrument, 
and output assignments. On the far left, the Info column provides a look at the 
current settings for any selected track. Between the Info column and the Track 
column, three narrow columns let you set certain characteristics of each track. 
In the Mute (M) column, you can temporarily stop playback of any Track. 

The Class (C) column lets you select any of Cubase Audio’s six types of Track 
Classes: MIDI, Audio, Drum, Mix, Tape, and Group. Each type of Track 
then appears in the Class column represented by a different icon. The Time 
Lock (T) column lets you lock the start time of a Track to a specific SMPTE 
dmecode location independently of the master tempo. 



Figure 14.22 
The Arrange win- 
dow shows a list 
ofTracks— both 
MIDI and audio 
—and their asso- 
ciated Parts. 

The right side of the Arrange window displays the Parts that correspond 
to each of the Tracks. In Cubase Audio, Parts (represented by rectangular 
segments) can contain either MIDI or audio data, and you can use many of 
the same kinds of editing operations on both. You can drag Audio Parts into 
new locations and onto other Tracks. You can also cut, copy, paste, snip, 
merge, and mix them as if they were MIDI Parts. The resulting graphic 
configuration provides a good overview of the sequence, which scrolls 
along as the music plays. 

To record audio into your sequence, you first create a new Track and use 
the Class column to set the Track type to Audio. Next you create a Part 
into which the recording will go. To adjust and monitor input and playback 
levels, the program provides a Record Monitor (Figure 14.23), which 
includes two peak-hold-style VU meters, two faders, and two controls for 
setting the pan positions. Clicking the NewRec button prompts you to 
name your new soundfile. 

All of Cubase Audio’s recording and playback functions originate from the 
same Transport Bar that the MIDI-only sequencer uses (Figure 14.24). 

Once you’ve named your file and made the necessary adjustments, you 
click the Record button to start recording. Clicking Stop ends the recording 
and the program pauses briefly as it builds the waveform. 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


Figure 14.23 

Cubase Audio’s 
Record Monitor 

Figure 14.24 

Cubase Audio uses 
the same Transport 
Bar as Cubase. 

^ I Solo irOverdubl j^ 

tA I R»o Mod» Left Locator 


I. 1. 0 120. Dll Click 

) § 

S1LM21LJ Punch Right Locator 

Sor.9Posrttw Tempo, 

o: «: «: o 4 / i K — 

I Sync I I 

4/ 4 I 

Time Position Signature 

To view and edit your soundfile, you have to open the Audio Editor win- 
dow (Figure 14.25), which shows the audio data as a waveform display. If 
you’re imponing a soundfile into the Audio Editor window, you simply 
choose the Pencil tool from the Tool Palette and click in the empty display 
area. You can then use a dialog box to select any Sound Designer II or 
Audio IFF files, which can then appear in the window. 

Cubase Audio provides several tools for manipulating its waveform dis- 
plays. The Arrow tool lets you select a waveform and change its position in 
time by dragging it to the left or right. The Scissors tool enables you to cut 
a waveform into segments. With the Snap feature active, the cut-point that 
you select is automatically shifted, before cutting, to the nearest specified 
measure subdivision— sort of like a quantize-on-cut feature. The Eraser tool 
lets you erase a waveform with a single click, and the Mute tool lets you 
mute one or more waveforms by clicking on them. Muted waveforms ap- 
pear grayed out to indicate that they’re temporarily disabled. To quickly 
preview parts of a soundfile, the Magnifying Glass tool allows you to click 



Figure 14.25 

Waveforms can 
appear as stereo or 
mono audio events. 
Each has a set of 
arrows to increase 
or decrease the 
waveform seg- 
ment’s size. 

aii 3 ^here on a waveform and begin playback at that point. Finally^ the 
Kick tool lets you bump a waveform forward or backward by a specific 

Each waveform appears in its own reaangular box with a name label in the 
upper-left comer. When you cut a waveform into smaller segments, each new 
segment also gets its own box and label. Arrows in the upper-left and lower- 
right comers of the display boxes let you expand and contract the view of each 
waveform. Double-headed arrows indicate that some of the display is hidden 
from view. Since you only hear the visible part of each waveform during play- 
back, you can easily adjust the length of each audio section by exposing more 
or less of the display. 

Cubase Audio stresses real-time editing in its design. As a sequence is play- 
ing, you can cut, copy, paste, and manipulate the Parts anywhere in the 
Arrange window. During playback a moving cursor line indicates the cur- 
rent location in the sequence, and the window scrolls to keep up. The Score 
Edit and Key Edit windows (see Chapter 5) along with the Audio Editor 
window work the same way. You can make changes in any window while 
the sequence is playing and hear the results immediately. If you have a 
large-enough monitor, you can have the Arrange window, the Audio Editor 
window, and one of the MIDI editing windows all open and all indicating 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


the current sequence position with synchronized moving cursors while 
simultaneously playing MIDI and audio data. 

Cubase Audio is compatible with, but doesn’t require, Apple’s MIDI Man- 
ager. Its many features and unique approach to working with MIDI make it 
worth considering if you want to add digital audio recordings to your MIDI 

I Digital Performer 

Performer, from Mark of the Unicorn, has long been a favorite of com- 
posers and electronic-music makers of all kinds. It has continued to enjoy a 
high degree of success over the past several years because of its long list of 
features, intuitive user interface, and nice-looking graphics. With the com- 
ing of affordable digital audio hardware and growing competition from 
other companies, it was inevitable that this ever-popular sequencer would 
join the ranks of MIDI programs offering digital-recording capabilities. 

The result of this audio-MIDI coupling is Digital Performer, a sequencing 
program that retains the look and feel of Performer while adding features 
that allow direct-to-disk recording and editing. If you’re already familiar 
with Performer, you’ll have no trouble adjusting to Digital Performer. The 
MIDI aspects of both programs are virtually identical, so experienced Per- 
former users can skip most of the documentation and go directly to the 
additional seaion covering the digital audio features. 

As much as possible, Digital Performer handles audio the same as it han- 
dles MIDI. Most of the editing operations use the same Tracks window. 
Graphic Editing window, and Event List window as before, only now mod- 
ified to accommodate audio data. Additionally, many of the menu items 
apply to both MIDI and audio data. For a detailed description of Per- 
former’s various windows and MIDI editing features, see Chapter 5. 

To use Digital Performer, you’ll first have to install an Audiomedia or 
Sound Tools card in your computer. You’ll also need 5 megab 3 rtes or more 
of RAM and a large hard disk with a 20-millisecond access time or less. The 
program loads and plays Sound Designer, Sound Designer II, and Audio 



IFF file formats, but it always generates monaural Sound Designer II files 
when it records. Digital Performer treats stereo recordings as two mono 
recordings and does not interleave the channels as does Sound Designer II. 

When you first open the program, you’re presented with the same Consoli- 
dated Controls Panel (Figure 14.26) as in the MIDI-only version of Per- 
former— identical except for the small waveform button in the lower-right 
comer. The transport controls and the counter display work the same, and you 
have the same recording options— Regular, Overdub, Punch In, and Auto 
Record— for audio as for MIDI. If you plan to combine MIDI data with an 
audio recording, it’s important that you use the metronome to provide a refer- 
ence tempo before recording the audio or you’ll have a hard time synchroniz- 
ing the two. Remember also, that if you change the tempo after recording 
MIDI and audio, they will no longer play together because tempo changes 
affect only the start times of audio events and not (as with MIDI) the actual 
notes that make up the audio data. 

Figure 14.26 

Performer and 
Digital Performer 
share nearly identi- 
cal Consolidated 
Controls Panels. 

OCXlDOOO k\ ^ 

I File: Untitled 


i1 ^ 11^ B gy E9 ^ y 

Momoru I Slorl : 1 11 lOOO j Stop : 36|1 1000 

D:H I.H3 0 

To begin recording, you first add an audio track to the Tracks window (Fig- 
ure 14.27), assign it an input channel number (1 or 2), and record-enable it by 
clicking in the Record column. The standard recording mode allows you to 
record a single channel onto a single track. With MuItiRecord you can record 
two channels onto two tracks or simultaneously record MIDI data onto any 
number of MIDI tracks along with audio on one or more audio tracks. 

To help you adjust your input levels, Digital Performer provides the Audio 
Monitor window (Figure 14.28), which includes two VU-style meters with 
clipping indicators. Each time you make a recording, the program automat- 
ically opens a new file with the default name, Takefile, followed by a chan- 
nel number and a take number. For example, take 1 of a recording on 
channel 2 would appear as Takefile 2.1. You can change the Takefile name 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


Figure 14.27 
The Tracks win- 
dow lets you view 
and edit both audio 
■ and MIDI data. 

Figure 14.28 

The Audio Moni- 
tor window pro- 
vides VU-style 
meters to indicate 
recording and 
playback levels. 

Figure 14.29 
The Soundbites 
window lets you 
view and organize 
your soundfile 



/^Tracks UJindoui 


Start; 111 1000 

i End:86|l|000 



















i 1 

: 1 


► 1 

Vocals 1 


Vocals 2 






^ M2 








► M3 


► M4 




► M5 




► M6 






► M7 






► MIO 







► mi 



i _ 





i' ' 




Audio Monitor 

“75 ?55«5?H1 ^ ii«lL ZT»" 

1 |Takefile.l.l 

2 |TakofiIe,2.l 

1 1 1 1 
-36 -24 -12 OdB 

at any time^ but in the meantime the automatic naming system provides 
each recorded pass with a separate label to help you stay organized and to 
prevent duplicate names. Once you complete your recording, the audio 
data appears on the appropriate audio track in the Tracks window. 

Digital Performer allows you to import soundfiles, regions, and playlists 
(without crossfades) directly from Sound Designer II or Audiomedia (see 
Chapter 12). When you open the Soundbites window and selea Add Sound- 
bite from the pop-up mini-menu, a dialog box appears that enables you to 
selea from the available soundfiles, regions, and playlists. If you selea a play- 
list to import, all of its corresponding regions appear in the Soundbites window 
(Figure 14.29) along with the soundfile name. 












Snara Hit 








Varsa Maasura 




























Shortanad varsa 







Oh aQatn 




Digital Performer refers to regions as soundbites to avoid confusion with 
its term regions, which describes selected areas used for editing MIDI data. 
Nonetheless, a Sound Designer region and a Digital Performer soundbite 
are the same thing— a subdivision of a soundfile. A soundbite consists of a 
beginning and ending location pointer that delineates a specific part of a 
soundfile for playback. Because it is not the actual audio data itself, you can 
edit a soundbite nondestructively by using many of the same editing com- 
mands that are available for MIDI data, including Cut, Copy, Paste, Erase, 
Repeat, Merge, Snip, Splice, and Shift. 

Each recording that you make also shows up in the Soimdbite window, which 
becomes a kind of catalog of audio data. Every entry in the Soundbite window 
includes a name, duration, sampling rate, resolution, and audio channel. Sev- 
eral file-management options allow you to sort the soundbites by name, size, or 
parent soundfile and let you select unused soundbites to delete. The Compact 
command removes (permanently) the portions of a soundfile that are not part 
of a soundbite and closes up the gaps between parts to form a single file. This 
is important if you need to reclaim storage space on your hard disk to continue 
making recordings. 

By clicking on the Play button in the Controls Panel, you can play 
through all of the soundbites in a playlist. You can also click the Audible 
Mode button (the small speaker icon) in the Soimdbites window. This lets 
you preview any individual soundbite by simply clicking on its name. 

Digital Performer uses the same kind of Event List window (Figure 14.30) for 
audio data that it uses for MIDI data. Each soundbite appears in the list with 
its attack (start) time indicated on the left in measures, beats, and ticks. If you 
prefer, you can change the numbers to read in SMPTE timecode. To the right 
of the soimdbite name, the soundbite velocity and duration appear. As in 
Smdio Vision, “velocity” does not refer to the same parameter that you nor- 
mally associate with MIDI data. In this case it is the initial volume level that 
the soundbite will use for playback. 

The Event List lets you edit the velocity directly by clicking on the value 
and typing a new number. To change the duration, on the other hand, you 
must use Sound Designer II to readjust the region boundaries. You can also 
assign volume and pan data to each soimdbite. Unlike velocity, which only 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


Figure 14.30 

Digital Performer 
uses the same kind 
of Event List win- 
dow for audio data 
that it uses for 
MIDI data. 


audio 1 (Seq-1) 

3i3 180 

Verse Meas^ 

A Volume ' 1 4 

Verse Measure 

it 27 41423 

il27 41423 




A Volume i i 
A Pan i 52 

4 127 31165 

5)31340 A Volume 1 1 






A Volume ; i 2 

A Panlss 

A VoKirie i sb 

127 .2)233 

6) 2)317 

7) 2ji58 


A VoTume : 52 

"" Sna7 eHiil 

Snare Hit 

i 1 27 2)233 

i127 0)424 

“Vi 27 "““oirYf “ 
' Vl27 0)i'47 ■ 

affects the beginning of the soundbite, volume and pan events function like 
MIDI continuous-controller events (which they aren’t) to affect a soundbite 
while it’s playing. You can also construct a panel of sliders and assign them 
to control the volume and pan parameters for various soimdbites just as 
with MIDI events. 

For a better view of your soundbites, Digital Performer provides an audio 
version of its Graphic Editing window (Figure 14.31). It omits the note 
grid for MIDI events, but provides a display for viewing soundbites along 
with velocity, volume, and pan data. When you assemble a playlist and 
view it in the Graphic Editing window, the waveform appears with the 
names of the different soundbites under the corresponding places in the 
display. Although the playlist will usually sound like a continuous record- 
ing, the soundbites that form it are contained in separate boxes that you 
can drag to new locations or delete entirely. 

Both the Event List window and the Graphic Editing window share the 
same Audible Mode button that the Soundbites window has. When in 
Audible Mode, you can click on any soundbite in the display to audition it 
separately. The Insert button (I), also in both windows, lets you insert a 
soundbite wherever you want and also allows you to add volume and pan 
events individually. If you prefer that your soundbites “snap” to a grid 
location when you drag them, you must set and activate the Edit Resolu- 
tion button in the upper-right corner. Otherwise, any audio event that 
you drag will move smoothly to any location along the display. 



Figure 14.31 
The Graphic 
Editing window 
shows audio data 
in a waveform 
display with the 
names of the indi- 
vidual soundbites 
beneath it. Volume 
and pan events 
appear in a graph- 
like display below. 



Audio 1 (Seq-I) 

II Unit ■ J llOOO b«ats Q 

• I • • ■ I ' ■ ^ I ' • ' I ' ’ ' I ’ ■ ' I ■ ' • I ‘ • I • ■ ■ I ' • ■ I • ^ ' I ' ' ' I ’ ■ I • ’ ■ I ■ 
4 5 6 




i ! i j ! 

kL k.iL ALlyli iLiLiLilLlyii iLLLiLlkLi^iLLikikik 

Measure Verse Measure Verse Measure Bridge Saxes Saxes 

If you select a portion of a soundbite, you can separate it from the sur- 
rounding waveform with the Split command, or you can choose Trim to 
eliminate pans outside of the selected area. In either case. Digital Performer 
automatically finds the nearest zero crossing before making the edit to reduce 
the possibility of clicks and pops. By option-clicking before you drag a soimd- 
bite, you can drag a copy of the soundbite to a new location without chan^g 
the position of the original. 

As with Studio Vision, Digital Performer offers a Strip Silence funaion that 
aas like a noise gate to eliminate low-amplitude sections from a waveform. 

The Strip Silence dialog box offers parameters for setting the threshold level, 
attack time, and release time along with an option to aaivate the zero-crossing 
function. When you apply Strip Silence to a waveform. Digital Performer 
labels each of the resulting soundbites with a name that refleas their origins 
(Figure 14.32). The Soundbites window lets you assign another name to 
them at any time. 

You can use most of Digital Performer’s MIDI editing commands with 
selected audio regions as well. Commands such as Quantize, Change Veloc- 
ity, Reverse Time, Retrograde, and Scale Time are available for use with 
soundbites, but you must keep in mind that they apply only to the place- 
ment of each audio event as a whole. When you use Quantize with a num- 
ber of soundbites, only the attack times are affected, not the data within the 

Digital Audio Meets MIDI 


Figure 14.32 

After applying 
the Strip Silence 
command, Digital 
Performer labels the 
resulting soundbites. 

silence (Seq-1) 

4| 11460 Id II Unit » J 1|000 b»ats 




' ' ' 1 ' " 1 ....... 1 ...... . 

! 3 






S*x Riff. 1.1 

Sax Riff.1 2 

Sax Riff .1 .3 



waveform. Reverse, for instance, will change the order of a group of sound- 
bites, but the audio data within each soimdbite will still sound the same. 

The program also provides a Mix command that allows you to combine 
two or more soundbites onto a new track. To prevent the combined wave- 
forms from clipping, the Mix dialog box offers a Normalize option that 
automatically keeps the amplitude within the optimum range. To apply 
more extensive editing operations to your waveforms. Digital Performer 
provides a direa link to Sound Designer II or Audiomedia. When you 
selea a soundbite and choose the Edit in Sound Designer II command, 
the editing program opens with the soundbite highlighted and ready for 

Digital Performer has the ability to synchronize to external devices— such 
as tape decks and VCRs— that output SMPTE timecode. Combining 
MIDI with digital audio, however, poses unique synchronization problems 
because the two types of data respond differently to slight variations in tape 
speed. To overcome these problems. Digital Performer incorporates a real- 
time tracking function, which ensures that both audio and MIDI data are 
continuously synchronized with the incoming timecode— without requiring 
a tape calibration process or additional external hardware. 

Speaking of hardware, Mark of the Unicorn offers its own alternative to 
Digidesign’s Audiomedia and Sound Tools cards. The Digital Waveboard is 
designed specifically to work with Digital Performer and provides the same 



CD-quality sound as the Digidesign products. The Waveboard uses only 
digital circuits and connections for its inputs and outputs, so you’ll need to 
use the analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog converters in a pro-level DAT 
recorder, or other external converters, to record and play back your audio. 

If it’s important to you to keep your recordings in the digital domain, this 
audio NuBus card is worth looking into. 

The appearance of Digital Performer in the MIDI marketplace will make 
many longtime Performer users very happy. It retains the best features of 
Performer while integrating direct-to-disk recording into an audio-MIDI 
package with considerable appeal. For a good number of musicians and 
postproduction professionals, this should provide the inmitive yet effective 
work environment that they want. 

B Final Thoughts 

The products covered in this chapter all approach the task of combining 
MIDI with digital audio from different perspectives. This is good news for 
multimedia producers because it means that you can choose a program with 
the right balance of MIDI and audio features. 

Audio Trax is the least expensive of this chapter’s products, and it’s also the 
only one that doesn’t require additional hardware to use. Deck is the only 
one that combines true multitrack digital recording, mixing, and process- 
ing, but it emphasizes digital audio at the expense of its MIDI capabilities. 
Studio Vision, Cubase Audio, and Digital Performer all start with sophisti- 
cated high-end sequencers and add two-channel direct-to-disk recording to 
the package. Each of these products has a definite niche in the audio mar- 
ketplace, and each should appeal to users with the right combination of 


Atlagio M.M 

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VC. t 




Adding Sound 
to Desktop 

i f you’re inlerested in producing mtrltimedia presentations on the Macintosh, 
you should spend some time seriously cx)nsidering the role that music and 
sound will play in your productions. Since music and soimd always take place 
in time, they have the magical ability to imbue a program with a sense of 
immediacy and presence that more static elements lack. And since movies and 
other forms of animation also take place in time, the natural combination of the 
two can produce the proverbial marriage-made-in-heaven. 

But getting this couple to the altar is another story altogether. Producing a 
finished product that appears organic and seamless can be a frustrating 
experience if you find yourself working with a program that doesn’t allow 
for the kind of sound implementation that you need. 

This chapter discusses most of the current crop of System 7-compatible anima- 
tion and multimedia programs, with regard to how they incorporate music and 
sound into their presentations. The list is long and the range is wide, so it’s 
likely that somewhere in this burgeoning field there’s a program that’s right 
for you. 



si HyperCard 

It’s hard to imagine a Macintosh user who hasn’t spent at least some time 
exploring this multifaceted program. Certainly one of the reasons for its 
widespread, lasting popularity is that HyperCard (Claris Corp.) is a truly 
universal vehicle for capturing, storing, finding, and presenting information 
of any kind. In other words, it’s multimedia for the man on the street- 
accessible and adaptable. But HyperCard’s power and versatility have also 
propelled it into the realm of professional artists and presenters, giving it a 
range of applications unparalleled by other products. The success of Hyper- 
Card can be largely attributed to its three main features: a structure based 
on a common, intuitive metaphor, a full-featured, integrated paint program 
for graphics, and a built-in, comprehensible programming language. 

HyperCard stores and presents its information on cardsy the electronic 
equivalent of the paper index cards in a library card catalog. Cards are 
grouped into stacks, which are usually, but not always, based on a common 
theme. Each stack is a separate file that appears in the Finder as a Hyper- 
Card icon. Stacks function much like index drawers or boxes filled with 
cards that cover a particular subject. When you reach the last card in a file, 
you automatically retmo to the first card, so a closer analogy might be that 
of a rotary card file where an endless loop of information is available and 
you can move in either direction to explore it. 

HyperCard, however, does not limit you to only moving in two directions. 
Most cards have buttons that provide a link to other cards or other stacks, so 
the structure of a stack can be as simple or as complex as necessary to interac- 
tively supply you with the information that you seek. You might for example 
create an address-book stack and an appointment-book stack like the samples 
included with the program (Figure 15.1). With buttons to link the two, you 
can look up a person’s name and address and with the click of a button, see 
yoiu next appointment with that person. Or you can look up an appointment 
and see where you have to be that day. This is only a very simple example. 
More elaborate stacks can take you in many different directions, creating an 
interaaive environment of text, graphics, animation, and sound. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


Figure 15.1 

These two cards 
from difTerent 
stacks have buttons 
that link the stacks 
together, allowing 
you to jump from 
one type of infor- 
mation to another. 

HyperTalk and Sound 

To control all its features and interactions, HyperCard provides its own 
programming language, HyperTalk, which uses common English words to 
create short command sequences called scripts. HyperCard scripts contain 
the instructions that tell the different parts of a stack what to do and how to 
do it. Calculations, message displays, button actions, animation events, and 
sound are all controlled by their corresponding scripts. 

HyperCard can produce two types of sounds directly from the computer. 
The first is the familiar Macintosh system beep, used mainly to call atten- 
tion to something like a dialog box or an alert message. Although you can 
specify the number of times it sounds, the beep tone (or whatever Control 
Panel sound is assigned to replace it) only plays at one pitch and you can’t 
change its length. If you’re trying to add a tune to your HyperCard stack, 
the Beep command is not the way to do it. The second type of sound is 



much more exciting. HyperCard can play back digitized soundfiles through 
the Macintosh speaker (or audio output jack) at any specified pitch and 

To get these sounds, you must first record them with an audio digitizer, 
such as MacRecorder or Voice Impact Pro (see Chapter 1 1). The products 
include software that converts the recording into a Macintosh resource file 
that you can add to any HyperCard stack with a resource mover utility. By 
using the Play command, you can play back the sound at any tempo, pitch, 
and rhythm, making it possible to compose a simple melody that appears at 
specific places in your stack. It’s helpful if you have some basic understand- 
ing of musical notation because the sound parameters that you set in 
HyperTalk are expressed in common musical terms. 

HyperCard comes with three sounds already installed: Harpsichord, Boing, 
and Flute. You can use the Play command with any other sounds installed 
as resources so long as the name attached to the resource file matches 
exactly the name that you use for your H 5 rperTalk script. If you choose not 
to specify a tempo value, HyperCard will default to a tempo of 200 or will 
retain the last tempo entry until the next Play command or specified tempo. 

Next you indicate the pitches that you want by specifying the names of the 
notes using letters: a, b, c, d, etc., and r for rest. To add chromatic scale 
degrees, you follow a letter with a sharp ( 0 ) or flat (b). Additionally, you need to 
indicate the octave that the notes will occur in. If you don’t include an octave 
value in the Play command script, HyperCard defaults to an oaave value of 4— 
the octave starting at middle C. When you include an octave number with a 
note, that octave applies to all subsequent notes in the command line until 
another value appears. If you prefer, you can use note numbers to indicate 
pitches. In that case, middle C equals note number 60, C# equals 61, D 
equals 62, etc. This eliminates the need for including accidental and octave 

Finally, you must specify the durations of the notes by using single letters. 
HyperTalk allows any of the following durations: whole note (w), half note (h), 
quarter note (q), eighth note (e), sixteenth note (s), thirty-second note (t), and 
sixty-fourth note (x). To indicate a dotted note, type a period after the note’s 
duration value (e.g., dotted quarter = q.). To indicate a triplet, add a 3 after the 
duration. A typical HyperTalk note entry would look like a#5e or eb4q. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


To create a melody, simply type in a script that begins with the Play com- 
mand followed by the name of the sound, then the tempo, and finally a 
string of note letters with the appropriate octave and duration values. As 
with octave numbers, duration values apply to all subsequent notes until a 
new value appears. In some cases you may want to play a sound only at its 
original pitch, such as when you’re using sound effects or a person’s voice. 
In these cases, simply enter the Play command and the name of the sound 
without any other parameters. 

For HyperCard to play a melody (or any other kind of sound for that mat- 
ter), it must first load the resource sound into memory. This means that 
there must be enough available RAM to load the soimd completely before 
playback or you may lose part of it. Also, large resource soimds take time 
to load, so there may be a brief delay before playback starts the first time 
you load the sound into HyperCard. If you have enough RAM, HyperCard 
can retain the sound in memory and subsequent playback will begin with- 
out a pause. In some cases you might want to have a very large sound 
resource load when the stack first opens so it will be available in RAM 
when needed. Because it’s the sound itself that demands the memory and 
loading time, once it’s in RAM the computer can trigger different notes 
with very little effort. 


If you don’t want the music to continue after a person leaves the current 
card, you can include the Play Stop command in your HyperTalk script. If, 
on the other hand, you want the music to finish before the rest of the script 
continues, you can use a special version of the Wait command. 

External Commands and Functions 

HyperTalk consists of a large vocabulary designed to meet the needs of 
most users under most circumstances. But there are times when special 
needs arise that require HyperTalk to perform tasks that exceed its usual 
capabilities. For these situations, HyperCard includes the ability to attach 
external commands pCCMDs) and external functions (XFCNs) to its stacks 
by using a resource editor like ResEdit. XCMDs and XFCNs are execut- 
able code resources written in one of several Macintosh programming lan- 
guages, such as Pascal, C, or 68000 assembly language. They aa as 
special-purpose code modules that allow HyperTalk to extend its range of 



influence to include such things as serial port input and output routines, 
and the ability to control external devices, such as videodisc players, MIDI 
instruments, and CD-ROM drives. XCMDs and XFCNs are available 
from a number of user groups, online services, and commercial developers. 

With its external commands, HyperCard provides the opportunity to pro- 
duce interactive multimedia presentations that include large amounts of 
CD-quality audio without the need to include massive storage within the 
computer. Combining MIDI with HyperCard also offers great potential for 
adding high-fidelity sound to presentations, again without heavy storage 
demands. For more on HyperCard and MIDI, see Chapter 8. 

si MacroMind Director 

MacroMind Director is unquestionably one of the most powerful, versatile, 
and fully implemented products currently available for creating animations, 
presentations, and interaaive multimedia on the Macintosh. Its animated 
sequences have appeared in films and on television, and in corporate 
offices, schools, and retail outlets. They have also made frequent appear- 
ances in other programs, like HyperCard. 

Director’s popularity results mainly from its integration of three important 
elements: its sophisticated graphics program, its effective animation fea- 
tures, and its ability to incorporate a variety of different kinds of soimds 
into its presentations. To further extend its capabilities. Director includes 
its own HyperTalk-like programming language. Lingo, that enables you to 
create fully interactive multimedia presentations. 

MacroMind Director consists of two distinct but interrelated pans: Over- 
view and Studio. In the Studio part, you can produce high-quality animated 
scenes called movies. These movies can consist of not only animation but 
text, imported graphics, and sound as well. In the Overview part, you can 
create multimedia slide shows, which can include graphics, animated text, 
visual transitions, Direaor movies, and sound. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 



To create an Overview presentation, you first open the Overview win- 
dow (Figure 15.2), which includes an icon bar across the top. The icons 
represent the different kinds of documents and effeas that you can use to 
compose your presentation. The document types are (from left to right) 
MacPaint, PICT, Glue, MacroMind Director movie, MacroMind 
Accelerator movie. Auto Animate, sound, timer, transition, and Over- 
view document. 

Figure 15.2 

The Overview 
window lets you 
create presentations 
by linking together 
different kinds of 

You produce an Overview presentation by dragging document and effeas 
icons into the working area of the window, where they become linked auto- 
matically into a sequence. Each element in the sequence, called a slide^ 
plays in order from left to right, creating an animated “slide show.” It’s 
important to remember that slides are not simply single-image documents. 
They can include sounds, movies from the Studio part of Director, and 
graphics from other programs, all tied together in the Overview window by 
a variety of special transitions (wipes, dissolves, reveals, etc.) and timer 

By dragging an icon below another icon in the Overview window, you can 
create a compound slidcy which plays two or more elements at the same time. 



In this way you can have sound play when a visual element appears in the 
sequence. Compound slides offer great potential for creating complex 
events. You might, for instance, have a graphic background appear with an 
animated sequence superimposed on it while a musical passage plays along. 

Overview documents don’t actually contain all of the pictures and sounds 
that make up a presentation. The Overview document is simply a list of 
other documents along with information concerning such things as their 
order, timing, and transitions. For this reason. Overview documents don’t 
require much disk space, but they must know the locations of the other, 
related documents to find them when needed. 

Sound in Overview 

MacroMind Director includes a large selection of sounds in its Sounds file. 
To add sound to an Overview presentation, you just drag a sound icon from 
the icon bar and position it under one of the slides in the window. You then 
assign it one of the sounds from the pull-down Sound menu (Figure 15.3) 
by dragging through the list imtil you find a suitable choice. The name 
tmder the sound icon then changes to reflect your selection. 

The amount of time that a slide remains on screen depends on the setting 
of the timer effect, which is represented by the stopwatch icon. If you dis- 
play a sfide for less time than it takes for the assigned sound to play, the 
sound will be cut off To solve this, you need to include a timer that’s set to 
a time long enough to accommodate the sound effects or music. 

MacroMind Director movies created in the Studio can include their own 
sounds. If you use one of these movies as a slide in the Overview window, 
you won’t see a separate sound icon. The Overview window allows you to 
play only one sound in each slide column. If you add a sound to a column 
that includes a Director movie with its own sound. Overview will play only 
the topmost sound in the column. 

You can record your own soundfiles with MacRecorder or Voice Impaa 
Pro to extend your range of choices, and you can add sounds to the Sound 
menu by using the Sounds Utility that comes with Director. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


Figure 15.3 

The Sound menu 
offers a good selec- 
tion of sound effects 
and music for your 




1 - Basics 

2 - Euplosions 

3 - LDeapons 

4 - Instruments 

5 - Nature 

6 - Space 

7 - Old Music 

8 - Neui Music 

9 - Business 

I F - Macintalk 











□j 9-1 Intro! 

^ 9-2 lntro2 

9-3 lntro3 
9-4 I’m Here 
9-5 Mini Fanfare 
9-6 Bad Times 
9-7 Ending 
9-8 Transition 1 
9-9 Transition 2 
9-fl Transition 3 
9-B Transition 4 
9-C Transition 5 
9-0 Transition 6 


The Studio part of MacroMind Director is where you create your anima- 
tion. You can show these movies directly from Studio, or you can add them 
to any Overview document as part of a presentation. You can also distribute 
your animations by using the MacroMind Player that comes with Director. 

Although there are 1 1 different windows in Studio to produce your anima- 
tion, you only need 4 of them to create simple animated sequences. The 
Paint window provides the tools for drawing and editing your artwork. Its 
list of features rivals many standalone programs. You can create your art- 
work from scratch using the Paint window, or you can impon your art 
from a variety of other sources, such as paint programs, draw programs, 

3-D modeling applications, digitizers, and Scrapbook files. 

When you create or import artwork, Studio automatically stores it in the 
Cast window (Figure 15.4). The Cast window holds your collection of art, 
sound, and color with each castmember appearing in a small numbered box. 



To produce an animated sequence, you drag the castmembers onto the Stage 
window, which lets you view the animation one frame at a time. Studio also 
provides a feature that automatically places a series of castmembers into a 
sequence of movie frames. 

Figure 15.4 

The Cast window 
holds the collection 
of castmembers that 
you use to create 
your animated 

It’s important to keep in mind that Director uses essentially the same ani- 
mation techniques that traditional animators have used for years. A number 
of images, each with a slightly different shape or position, are assigned to 
individual frames and played back in succession, flip-book style. The 
images in each frame can be composed of several different bits of artwork, 
with each overlaying the other to form a composite image— for example, 
foreground, moving figure, moving background, and static background. 

To gain a better perspeaive on your movie and to keep track of which cast- 
members appear in which frames. Studio provides the Score window (Fig- 
ure 15.5). The Score helps you visualize the interrelationships of these 
components by displaying them on a grid that shows elapsed time in frames 
along the top. Each individual element, called a cell appears in a small box 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


in one of the 24 horizontal rows called channels. A vertical column of cells 
represents one frame, or in other words, everything you see on the Stage 
when you stop or pause a movie. 

At the top of the Score window, above the 24 numbered animation chan- 
nels, there are 5 channels dedicated to special effeas. These are, from top 
to bottom, tempo, color palette, visual transitions, and two channels for 
sound. The sixth channel stores scripts created using Lingo. 

Figure 15.5 

The Score window 
provides an over- 
view of your pre- 
sentation showing 
how the different 

Sound in Studio 

You can add sounds to Studio in two ways. One way is to import soimds 
directly to the Cast window by using the Import command on the File 
menu. These are called internal sounds, and they always remain with the 
movie that they were imported to. You can also add sounds from the 
MacroMind Director Sounds file. If the available sounds aren’t appropriate 
to your needs, you can always add others with the Sounds Utility. Sounds 
drawn from the Sounds file are called external soimds, and the file that 



contains them must reside in the same folder as Director or the current 
movie to appear on the Soimd menu. 

You can only use an internal sound in one movie. If you need to use that 
sound again somewhere else, you’ll have to copy it and import it to the 
other movie’s Cast window. In contrast, you can use external sounds in any 
of your movies as long as the file is in the right folder. Because digitized 
soundfiles are frequently large, using external sounds in a number of mov- 
ies can save you considerable disk space. 

To add sound to your movie, you first open the Score window and select 
one or more cells, in sound channel 1 or 2, by dragging across them. The 
highlighted cells correspond to the sequence of frames that your music or 
sound effects will appear with. When you choose a sound from the Sound 
menu, it is automatically pasted into the selected cells along with an identi- 
fication number that corresponds to the sound’s number in the menu. 

In most cases, you’ll need to assign several cells to a sound in order for it to 
play all the way through. If you find that part of your music, for instance, is 
getting cut off, you’ll have to add more cells or change the tempo setting in 
the Tempo channel. Tempos can help you synchronize the sounds with the 
animation by changing the animation speed. This doesn’t directly affect the 
sound, but it can make a specific number of frames take longer to run. A 
ten-frame soimd that doesn’t work at one tempo might work fine at another. 

With its two sound channels. Director allows you to play two different 
sounds simultaneously. This enables you to combine sound effects with 
music or add background music to narration. To use the second sound 
channel, however, you must have a Macintosh that can output two-channel 
soimd. You’ll also need System 6.0.7 or higher or the second sound channel 
will appear grayed out in the Score window. 

For some sound effects (such as the sound of a bouncing ball), you might 
want to have a sound repeat several times. To accomplish this, you must 
retrigger the sound by adding a blank cell before the beginning of each 
repetition. Be sure to allow enough cells for the sound to finish each time. 
You can cut, copy, paste, and clear sounds the same as with all other Score 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


window notations. You can also use Lingo to control the volume of a sound 
with fade-in, fade-out, and set-volume commands. 

Music with MIDI 

If you have a MIDI system hooked up to your computer, you can trig- 
ger MIDI events or sequences at specific places in your animation. Choos- 
ing MIDI from the Sound menu opens a submenu with six commands that 
you can use to control a sequencer. You can set a beat, song pointer, and 
song-select number or choose to start, continue, or stop a sequence. 

There are several possible configurations for using MIDI with Director. 
Drum machines and some synthesizers have on-board sequencers that, 
although seriously limited, will work with Director as long as you can set 
them to wait for an external signal. A better choice would be to use one of 
the sequencing programs described in Chapters 5 and 6. In this case you’ll 
have to use MultiFinder and Apple’s MIDI Manager so you can nm both 
programs at once. The most expensive solution, although perhaps the best 
in terms of data processing, is to add a second computer and MIDI inter- 
face to the system. Then the second computer can handle all of the MIDI 
responsibilities, while the main computer deals with the animation. 

To add external MIDI control to an animation, you first select an appropri- 
ate cell in one of the sound channels in the Score window. From the MIDI 
category in the Sound menu, choose Set Beat and use the dialog box to 
assign a tempo to your sequence. Then select a cell immediately to the right 
of the beat cell and choose Start from the MIDI submenu. Finally, deter- 
mine where you want the sequence to end, select a cell, and choose Stop. 

For the music to play correctly, you must load the sequence into your 
sequencer and set it to receive an external trigger. When you return to 
Director and play the movie, the sequence should begin at the appropriate 
frame and continue until the animation reaches the Stop command. To play 
back a sequence from a place other than the beginning, you use the Song 
Pointer command to assign a measure and beat for the music to begin on. 

In this case, you use the Continue command instead of Stan to indicate that 
you’re beginning in the middle of the sequence. You can also use the Song 
Select command with drum machines and external sequencers that allow 
you to specify a sequence by number. 




In some cases, you might want to generate speech using MacinTalk rather 
than digitized soundfiles. MacinTalk, which must be in the System folder 
to work, synthesizes speech based on what you type phonetically into the 
Text window. Each line in the Text window has a corresponding number 
that appears in the MacinTalk submenu. You can assign a statement to any 
frame by selecting a cell and choosing the desired text. Because MacinTalk 
uses a lot of processing to synthesize its speech, it may interfere with the 
playback of your movie when the computer speaks. It’s therefore best to 
add MacinTalk speech where the animation has paused momentarily. 

HyperCard and Lingo 

If you’re working with HyperCard, you may decide to use a sound from a 
HyperCard stack in one of your movies. With MacroMind Director you 
can import SND sound resource files. Unlike soundfiles in other formats, 
however, sound resources don’t appear with an icon on the desktop. To see 
the sound, you must click Resource in the Import dialog box, where it will 
appear in a list so that you can import it for use in a movie. You can also 
add a sound from Director to a HyperCard Home card or stack. Once 
installed, HyperCard doesn’t need the Sounds file from Director to play 
the sound. 

MacroMind Director includes its own versatile scripting language called 
Lingo, which can use compiled code modules called XObjects (external 
objects) to control external hardware devices. Director comes with several 
ready-to-use XObjeas, including one— the AppleAudioCD XObject— 
that lets you play audio CD music from an Apple (or Apple-compatible) 
CD-ROM player. 

Playing music from a CD player has an important advantage beyond the 
higher audio quality. Since the external device is independent of the Macin- 
tosh’s normal processing, you can play continuous sound even while mov- 
ies are loading into memory— something not possible with sounds played 
from the Sound channels. In faa, you can play back sampled sounds from 
the two Sound channels and from the CD-ROM player simultaneously if 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


you want. With Lingo you can also use a large number of available Hyper- 
Card XCMDs and XFCNs to further extend Director’s capabilities. 

I MediaMaker 

MediaMaker grew out of a collaborative effort between the BBC in London 
and Apple Computer. In 1988^ two teams that were exploring the common 
ground between television and computers joined forces to develop a soft- 
ware tool that would allow people to harness the impact and effectiveness of 
television in a direct, creative way that anyone could apply. The result of 
the effort was a program called the Sequence Editor. A few years later, 
MacroMind entered into a partnership with the group that developed the 
Sequence Editor and MediaMaker was born. 

With MediaMaker you can choose from a variety of media elements and 
quickly assemble them into presentations incorporating many different 
kinds of images and sounds. MediaMaker lets you create presentations from 
graphic and audio files stored on your Macintosh, or you can use external 
devices such as videotape recorders, compact disc players, and videodisc 
players to create elaborate multimedia productions that you can show on 
your computer or transfer to videotape. 

Overall Structure 

MediaMaker refers to a piece of media information as an element To create 
a presentation, you can combine any of six types of elements: animated 
sequences (such as MacroMind Director movies), videotape segments, clips 
from videodiscs, graphic files (such as PICT images), compact disc selec- 
tions, and digitized sounds. To keep track of all these multimedia elements, 
MediaMaker uses visual objects called picons (picture icons). You can move 
picons around the screen as if they were documents in the Finder. You can 
also arrange and organize picons by selecting them individually or in 
groups and dragging them to other windows to make copies. You create 
picons in a Collection window (Figure 15.6)— a sort of multimedia library 
for organizing and saving picons for use in your presentations. Each picon 



has a micon (miniature icon) in its upper-left corner to identify the type of 
file that it represents. 

To begin producing your presentation, you must first assemble a collection 
that contains all of the elements that you’ll need to use. If you want, you 
can arrange the picons in the Collection window and play them back one 
after another by clicking on them. In most cases, however, you’ll want to 
assemble the picons into a self-running, audiovisual presentation called a 

Figure 15.6 

Collection window 
acts as a library for 
organizing and 
saving media 

P Collection UJindoin 


•<2>9) Eclipse 


^NewBoerd V/( 

it 1 -A Jl..i 
rfr* tTTTWTrrl 

•©Moon still 

Firebird Pin 


|;<i>7) Any Colour] 

rfrnlT Tttttti 

The Sequence window (Figure 15.7) contains separate tracks where you can 
arrange your multimedia elements along a horizontal timeline so that more 
than one picon can play at once and all of the elements can exist in proper 
relationship to one another. The width of each picon along the timeline 
represents the duration of that element. You can drag a picon to the right or 
left to change its start time, and you can extend and contract its borders to 
change its duration. 

All of the picons that make up a sequence are dragged into the Sequence win- 
dow from a Collection window. After first opening a new Collection wdndow, 
you use the Elements menu to choose an appropriate element type, such as 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


Figure 15.7 

The Sequence 
window contains 
separate tracks for 
arranging multime- 
dia elements along 
a timeline. 

the Mac-based elements— Graphic, Animation, and Mac Sound. For 
Graphic and Animation, this produces a dialog box that offers a list of the 
available files. When you select a file, an editor window opens that provides 
information specific to that picon and lets you name it and set its time- 
related parameters. Transport controls at the bottom of the window allow 
you to play back the picon to preview it. 

Sound picons are all assigned the same waveform image as an icon. For 
graphic-based picons, you can capture any frame or seleaed area from an 
element’s file to represent it. If at a later time you want to change a picon’s 
parameters (or picture), you can double-click on the picon’s title bar to 
reopen its editor window. 

Mac-Based Sounds 

If you choose Mac Sound from the Elements menu, the Mac Sound Editor 
window (Figure 15.8) opens immediately, providing you with the opportu- 
nity to record a new sound. If you choose not to, clicking the Source field 
lets you open any soundfile or sound resource on your hard disk from the 
dialog box that appears. The Editor window for the seleaed soundfile 
shows the name of the file at the top, next to the Mac Sound picon image. 

In the center of the window, two fields display the end time and duration of 
the sound along with arrows for adjusting them. 

Mac Sounds always start from the beginning of the soundfile^ the start 
point cannot be changed. You can make the end time earlier, which will 



Figure 15.8 

The Mac Sound 
Editor window lets 
you record new 
sounds or import 
soundfiles from 
your hard disk. 

produce a corresponding change in the duration field. In the Sequence 
window, you can stretch or contract a Mac Sound picon to change its dura- 
tion, but you can’t stretch it past the actual duration as set in the Mac 
Sound Editor window. 

The best way to adjust the end point and duration of a soundfile is by play- 
ing the sound and clicking the Stop button when you reach the appropriate 
place. Then you can use the Set End button to transfer the current setting 
(as shown in the counter next to the scroll bar) to the End field. The Time 
field will change automatically to reflect the new setting. Clicking the Pre- 
view button lets you hear your settings, and the up/down arrows enable 
you to fine-tune the numbers. 

The Mac Sound Editor includes a looping function that lets you loop a sound 
fi'om its assigned end point back to its beginning as many times as you want. 
By clicking the Preview button with the Loop box checked, a sound will play 
from beginning to end, looping continually tmtil you reach the specified dura- 
tion time. MediaMaker can use sounds stored as SoimdEdit files, AIFF, and 
AIFF-C soimdfiles. %u can also import SND sound resources from Hyper- 
Card stacks, games, and other applications. 

Additionally, the Mac Sound Editor lets you record your own sovmds directly 
from the window if you have an external digitizer, like MacRecorder, or one of 
the Macintosh models with its own microphone, like the LC or Ilsi. When 
you click the Record button, it opens the recording and playback dialog box 
appropriate to the driver that you’re using. After you finish and save your 
recording, MediaMaker loads it into the Mac Sound Editor, where you can 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


view and edit its parameters. You can also launch the sound-editing applica- 
tion of your choice from the Editor window by assigning it ahead of time in 
the Preferences dialog box. This enables you to do extensive editing of your 
soundfiles, at any time^ by clicking the Launch button on the right side of 
the window. After returning from the editing program with your edited 
soundfile, you can click the Preview button to remove the old version of 
the sound from RAM and replace it with the new version. 

External Sounds 

In addition to the three Mac-based elements listed on the Elements menu, 
MediaMaker offers three additional elements derived from external devices: 
Videotape, Videodisc, and CD Audio. The program controls these devices 
with software modules called XObjects (external objects). In the Prefer- 
ences dialog box (Figure 15.9), you must first specify which hardware 
devices you have and where they’re connected. MediaMaker allows you 
to connect a CD-ROM drive to the SCSI port. After installing the proper 
drivers and XObjects in the System folder, you can create picons from 
external sources just as with Mac-based sources. 

Figure 15.9 
The Preferences 
dialog box lets you 
specify which 
external devices you 
have connected to 
your Macintosh. 


0 I Pioneer Laseruision ▼[ (8) Q 

; 0 I Sony SLU-676UC ^1 0 Print to UIdeo 

( Cancel ) 1 


o 0 I nppleCDSC~^ 

Uideo Input Card l| 

-Frame Rate 


I CoiorBoard 364 ▼ 

p Uideotape 

□ fluto Calibrate 
0 Time Code Display 

O Sequence 
(8) Deuices 
O Stage 
O Other 

The CD Audio Editor window (Figure 15.10) differs in several ways from 
the Mac Sound Editor window, although they share a number of features. 
The two speaker icons on the right let you select either or both of the two 
output channels on the CD player. The Loop function is essentially the 


J 300 

same as described above except that with CD audio you can specify both a 
start time and an end time for the looped section. In some cases^ there may 
be a slight gap when the CD jumps from loop end to loop start, so it’s impor- 
tant to preview the sound first to see if it will work in a given situation. 

Figure 15.10 

The CD Audio 
Editor window 
provides a full set 
of transport con- 
trols and several 
fields for setting 

The CD Audio Editor window also provides a complete set of transport 
controls to help you locate and define segments of sound. On the far left of 
the scroll bar, the current track is displayed in the Track Counter box. Next 
to that the Frame Counter shows you the current location in minutes, sec- 
onds, and CD frames (75 CD frames per second). Once you’ve set all the 
parameters for a CD audio picon, you can save it in a Colleaion window, 
where it appears with a small disc icon in its title bar. 

From there you can copy it into a Sequence window and drag it along the 
timeline to the appropriate point in the presentation. Moving the left or 
right edge of the picon adjusts its start or end time, but you must be careful 
not to lose track of your original settings in case you change your mind. If 
you choose the Separate CD option in the Preferences dialog box, you can 
display Mac-based audio and CD audio on separate tracks in the Sequence 
window. This allows you to synchronize Macintosh digitized sounds with a 
CD recording if, for example, you want to combine sound effects and 
music or music and narration. 

Since videodiscs also include audio tracks, the Videodisc Editor includes 
two speaker icons so that you can mute one or both audio channels depend- 
ing on your needs. Animation from sources such as MacroMind Director 
movies may also include their own sound. The Animation Editor window 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


provides a speaker button to toggle the audio on or off. With the audio 
turned on, the sound attached to the animation will take precedence over 
the audio from a Mac Sound picon. If you turn off the animation’s soimd, 
you can play the Mac Sound audio file while the animation runs. 

Getting in Sync 

Although the Sequence window allows you to place picons in precise loca- 
tions along its timeline, the process of synchronizing audio and visuals is 
not an exact science. Sounds always play at the same speed, but animation 
can vary in speed depending on the processing power of your computer and 
how busy it is at the moment. If you play an animation alone, the sequence 
will play as fast as your computer’s processor will allow. But if you play an 
animation along with a Macintosh soundfile, the animation may go slower 
because of the additional work being done. If you begin a sound after an 
animation has started, the animation may slow down during the audio 

The best way to arrive at the proper synchronization is to apply what 
MacroMind describes as the process of “successive approximation.” In 
other words, you should place the picons in their approximate locations, 
replay the sequence, and fine-tune the positions of the picons relative to one 
another. Playing longer sections of the sequence each time you make your 
adjustments will yield more accurate results. 

File loading times are another possible source of synchronization problems. 
If you produce a sequence built entirely on Macintosh-based elements, 
there may be occasional pauses when the computer tries to load one picon 
while playing another. Load times vary according to the processing power 
of your Macintosh, the size of the file involved, and the access speed of 
your hard disk. Combining visuals with audio can become tricky because 
MediaMaker will continue to play the audio tracks while it searches for and 
loads the corresponding visual picon. To avoid losing the synchronization 
of sound and visuals, you can activate the Pause for Search function in the 
Preferences dialog box. This causes all of the picons to wait momentarily 
while MediaMaker finds and loads the next picons in the sequence. The 
best approach is to experiment with different picon locations to arrive at a 
sequence configuration that works in a fluid and cohesive manner. 



si Adobe Premiere 

Adobe Premiere is part of the vanguard of new multimedia programs that 
are designed to work with Apple’s QuickTime software. By using the 32-bit 
addressing capability of System 7, it allows you to access more than 8 mega- 
b 3 ^es of RAM, so you can manipulate large files in the computer’s memorj' 
without having to continually transfer data to and from your hard disk. You 
can play your finished digital movie from Adobe Premiere or from within 
any application that supports the QuickTime format. If you prefer, you can 
also transfer your presentation to videotape for a more universal format. 

With Adobe Premiere you assemble your movie from a variety of source 
material called clips, which can include captured video from VCRs or cam- 
eras, animations, scanned images or slides, QuickTime movies, and digi- 
tized soundfiles. The program accepts source material in seven different file 
formats; movies in QuickTime format, animation in PICS format, still 
images in the PICT and Adobe Photoshop formats, and audio in the 
SoundEdit, Audio IFF, and SND sound resource formats. 

You can use sounds saved in the SND resource format as long as the file’s 
creator type is “sfil.” Some programs, like MacRecorder’s SoundEdit, 
save SND resource soimds with different creator types. You can use these 
sounds with Adobe Premiere, but you must first change the creator type 
by using a program such as DiskTop. Additionally, Adobe Premiere sup- 
ports only 3:1 and 6:1 compression ratios. 

The first step in creating a movie is to gather together your source material 
by importing the various files into a Project window (Figure 15.11). The 
Project window acts as a reservoir of available clips for use in assembling 
your movie. Within the window, each clip is identified with a thumbnail— 
a rough indication of the contents of a clip using one or more frames. In the 
case of audio clips, the thiunbnail consists of a miniature representation of a 
part of the soundfile’s waveform. 

Next to the thumbnail, each clip includes a description that provides such 
information as the type of clip (Movie, Still image. Background Matte, Anima- 
tion, or Audio) and its duration. Audio clips include the sampling rate (5, 1 1, 
or 22 kHz), the resolution, and whether the soundfile is stereo or mono. In the 
third column, there are spaces to add comments for each clip. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


Figure 15.11 

The Project win- 
dow shows each 
clip with a thumb- 
nail picture and a 

Classical RudiO 12] in to action 
Audio sequence 

Duration : 0 :00 ;08 . 1 I 

22KHZ - 8 Bit - Mono ^ 



Duration : 0 :00 .01.02 

160 X 120 



Duration ; 0 :00 02.05 

160 X 120 

( 1 1 Comments 


Ml Clip from Summer 

•Mouing Images 

111 start before cut 
22KHZ - 8 Bit - Mono ^ 

Classical Rtidio 


Duration:0:00 10,22 



Duration 0 00:01.20 
160x 120 

111' Comments 


Jump dancer 


Duration: 0:00 05.04 

1 60 X 1 20 

Ml Cross dissolve 


When you import movie and audio clips into the Project window, they 
play, by default, from beginning to end as they were originally recorded. 
Before you use each clip, therefore, you must edit its beginning (In) and 
ending (Out) points to designate the part of the clip that you want to use 
and to establish its duration. Double-clicking the thumbnail area of a clip 
opens its Clip window (Figure 15.12), which contains transport controls for 
playing the file, a counter display for locating specific frames, a duration 
display, and a viewing area for previewing the edited clip. 

In the case of audio clips, the viewing area shows the soundfile waveform. 
Just above the counter display, a frame indicator uses two short vertical 
lines to show the length of a single frame (Vso second) as a reference guide. 
To set the In and Out points for your audio clip, you can scroll through the 
waveform by using the slider in the lower-left corner, or you can simply 
play the soundfile until you reach the appropriate place and click the In 
button. This places a flag at the specified point in the waveform, and you 
can then use the same procedure for setting the Out marker. If the positions 
are a little off, you can fine-tune them at any time. 



Figure 15.12 

The Clip window 
provides controls 
and buttons for 
viewing and editing 
each clip. 


o rjo ub .i 1 ni icggB 

^ 00 ' 00 . 2*4 ESrcnKB 

Once you’ve organized your clips in the Project window and edited them 
with their Clip windows, you can begin to assemble your movie in the 
Construction window (Figure 15.13). The Construction window displays 
the clips in seven tracks along a horizontal time ruler. The tracks include 
two Video tracks for movie and still image clips, one Special Effects track 
for transitions, one Superimpose track for overlaying movie and still 
images, and three Audio tracks for playing digitized soundfiles. 

To assemble your movie, you simply drag each clip from the Project win- 
dow into the Construction window and place it in the proper track at the 
appropriate location along the time ruler. The program will then play all of 

Figure 15.13 

The Construction 
window displays 
the clips in differ- 
ent tracks along a 
time ruler. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


the clips in order from left to right. You can move clips around to change 
their start times and relationships to one another. You can also lengthen or 
shorten each clip’s playing time by dragging on its border. This produces 
the same effect as changing the In and Out points in the Clip window. 

Adobe Premiere lets you have up to three audio tracks playing simultane- 
ously, and you can mbc the tracks by independently adjusting the volume 
level of each clip. When you drag an Audio clip into the Construaion win- 
dow, its waveform appears in a long narrow box over a second box contain- 
ing a horizontal line. This second box is called the Audio Fade control, and 
the line represents the volume level of the waveform. 

The volume defaults to a straight, midlevel setting, but you can change the 
setting anywhere along the waveform. When you move the cursor into the 
Audio Fade control, it turns into a finger pointer. Clicking on the line adds 
a handle that you can use to drag the line up or down. When a handle is at 
the bottom of the Audio Fade control, the clip is inaudible. When it’s at the 
top, the volume is doubled. You can add as many handles as you want to 
create ascending and descending lines that act like amplitude envelopes to 
shape and blend your audio tracks. 

To add some variety to your soundtrack, Adobe Premiere provides two 
“filters” that you can apply to your Audio clips. These are actually not 
filters but would more appropriately be called effects. The Backwards filter 
plays the soundfile backward, and the Echo filter lets you create a number 
of echo effects. 

The clips in Adobe Premiere are not the actual source files stored on your 
hard drive. They simply contain pointers to the original files. When you 
combine and edit your clips, you are working exclusively with these 
pointers and the source files are left intact. To turn your project into a 
QuickTime movie, you must choose Make Movie from the Project menu. 
The program then compiles the clips into a new file that Adobe Premiere 
and other QuickTime-compatible applications can play. At this point you 
can print your movie to video for presenting it away from the computer. 
The new movie file can also become a clip in another Adobe Premiere 
project, allowing you to assemble a larger work by first creating smaller 



si Animation Works 

Animation Works, from Gold Disk Inc., is designed to bring the power and 
impact of animation within the reach of a wide group of users who may or 
may not have previous experience with this art form. Although the pro- 
gram takes a traditional approach to creating animations, it includes a num- 
ber of features that allow the computer to handle many of the more tedious 
aspects of animating. This provides a direct, interactive quality that makes 
the creative process more fun and less time-consuming. 

Animation Works uses the same three-step process that noncomputer ani- 
mators have used for years. First you create the characters, or actors, which 
are drawn as a series of incremental images called cels. Then you create the 
backgrounds that form the backdrop for the different scenes in your movie. 
The final stage involves combining the actors and the backgrounds into a 
completed animation consisting of a series of frames. 

To develop each of these three stages. Animation Works provides three editing 
environments. The Background Editor offers a full-featured color paint pro- 
gram that can import Scrapbook and PICT files and export Scrapbook, PICT, 
and PICS files. The Cel Editor enables you to create cels and group them into 
actors. The Movie Editor, the heart of the program, allows you to view and 
edit your actors and establish their movements and interrelationships. 

Each frame in Animation Works consists of one or more actors in front of a 
background. The actors move along paths, which are straight or cmwed 
lines representing the position of each actor through a series of frames. An 
actor walking across the screen from left to right, for instance, would have a 
path consisting of a straight line. 

The program lets you specify how many frames the completed action will 
take. If the sequence takes 20 frames, the path line will appear on screen 
with 20 points on it representing the actor’s position in each frame. Using 
fewer frames produces faster movement; to slow down an actor, you simply 
add more frames. The Movie Editor automatically creates the assigned 
number of frames, adds the background, and cycles through the character’s 
cels, placing each in a slightly different position along the path to simulate 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


The Movie Editor actually consists of four different movable windows 
(Figure 15.14). On the left, the Tool palette provides the tools for creating 
and editing paths. On the right, the Aaor window lets you view the indi- 
vidual actors and preview their motions. At the bottom, the Player window 
provides transport controls that let you navigate through your movie as a 
scrolling frame counter indicates your present prasition. You view your ani- 
mation in the Movie Editor window, where you also create and modify the 
paths that establish the movements of each actor. 

Figure 15.14 

The Movie Editor, 
with its four mov- 
able windows 

Whereas a path occurs over a number of frames, an event initiates an action 
at a specific frame. Animation Works lets you place an unlimited number of 
events within a movie. Events include such things as background changes, 
transitions, frame rate changes, and sound. The sound capabilities in Ani- 
mation Works are easy to use though rather limited. You can use any sound- 
files in MacRecorder’s SoundEdit format or SND sound resource format, 
but there are no editing options provided within the program. All soimds 
will play from beginning to end unless they’re interrupted by another 



sound or unless you place the Kill Sound option in a frame to cut off 
the sound. 

Adding sound to an Animation Works movie is easy. First, you locate the 
frame where you want to add sound by using the controls in the Player 
window. Next, you choose Sound from the Events menu to open a dialog 
box (Figure 15.15) that lets you select any sound in memory or lets you 
import sounds from your hard disk. To audition a sound, just click on its 
name. When you select a sound, its waveform appears on the right along 
with information about its duration and sample rate. Clicking the Select 
button installs the sound at the current frame location. 

Figure 15.15 

The Sound dialog 
box displays the 
waveform of a 
seleaed sound and 
lets you audition 
it by clicking on 
its name. 

Select Sample: 

Sound Info 

...Kill Sound... 
Music Intro, 

Hirplone Sound 


7 ^ 

Length : 6K 
Rite ; 7t<Hr 

^ 1 ' 

1 1 

\[ Select ]| [ Disk j 



) ( 

Done ] 

To give you an overview of your movie and to help you locate specific 
frames. Animation Works provides a Storyboard feature. The Storyboard 
window (Figure 15.16) displays miniature versions of the frames that make 
up your movie. Clicking on a frame makes it the current frame in the 
Movie Editor window. The Storyboard Settings window allows you to 
display only frames that meet certain criteria. This lets you view, for ex- 
ample, only the frames that have sound events attached to them. Or you 
might choose to view only frames with sounds or transitions. 

If you want to incorporate your movies into HyperCard stacks. Animation 
Works comes with an XCMD that allows you to play your animated 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


Figure 15.16 

The Storyboard 
window gives you 
an overview of your 
movie and helps 
you locate specific 

sequences from within H5T3erCard. The XCMD comes with documenta- 
tion in the form of a HyperCard stack along with several examples. 

si SuperCard 

SuperCard, from Aldus Corp., provides an extensive and versatile set of 
tools for creating custom programs ranging from simple organizers and 
databases to complex, sophisticated multimedia presentations. It combines 
the familiar Macintosh concept of windows and pull-down menus with 
HjqierCard’s highly effective metaphor of cards and stacks. In fact, you can 
easily import HyperCard stacks directly into SuperCard, where you can 
jazz them up by adding multiple windows, color, and animation. 

Although SuperCard has much in common with HyperCard, it is actually 
a much more powerful program that allows you to have several different 
kinds of windows open at once along with a number of customized menus. 
It also provides numerous tools for creating and using a variety of buttons, 
text fields, and graphic images in both color and black and white. When 



you’ve completed your program, SuperCard lets you turn it into a stand- 
alone application that will run on any Macintosh without the presence of 
the SuperCard application itself. 

In SuperCard a document or application is called a Projea. Each Projea 
can consist of several windows, and each window contains several cards that 
you see by looking through the window. The SuperCard tool kit actually 
consists of two separate programs: SuperEdit and SuperCard. The Super- 
Edit application enables you to assemble and change Projects, add windows 
and cards, and create graphics, text fields, and buttons. The SuperCard 
application runs the Projects that you produce in SuperEdit. 

Any object that you create in SuperEdit can have a script that tells the com- 
puter how to respond when you click on the object. Scripts take you from 
one card to another, open or close windows, start animations, or play digi- 
tized sounds. SuperCard provides a scripting language called SuperTalk, 
which is based on HyperTalk, the language used in HyperCard. The two 
languages are so similar that anyone familiar with HyperTalk should have 
no trouble working with SuperTalk. You might think of SuperTalk as a 
superset of HyperTalk because SuperTalk can do almost anything that 
HyperTalk can do, plus a lot more. With SuperTalk commands you can 
manipulate Paint and Draw graphics, windows, and menus. You can cycle 
colors, play SND resource soxmds, and display scanned images and 3-D 
animations created in other programs. 

From the standpoint of adding soimds to your presentation, SuperCard 
and HyperCard are nearly identical. In fact, SuperEdit can convert a 
HyperCard stack into a SuperCard Project while retaining all of its original 
fimctions. If a HyperCard stack has sound resources placed in its resource 
file, SuperEdit will convert the sounds unaltered and immediately playable 
by SuperTalk’s Play command. SuperEdit can also import sound resources 
from HyperCard stacks without necessarily converting the entire stack. 

And it can import sound resources from other documents and applications 
as well. 

SuperTalk’s Play command works the same as HyperTalk’s, and you can 
construa melodies from digitized sounds by using essentially the same 
scripting procedures that I described earlier in the chapter. Because sounds 
take up a lot of RAM, it’s important to check your memory requirements if 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


you plan to distribute your completed SuperCard Project. If a computer 
has insufficient memory to play a sound completely, the sound won’t play 
at all. Once the Play command triggers a sound, however, the script can go 
on to do other things, making it possible to have actions occur on screen 
while a long sound plays. 

SuperEdit also makes use of XCMDs (external commands) and XFCNs 
(external functions), just as HyperCard does, to extend its capabilities. For 
audiovisual applications, XCMDs provide the opportunity to control exter- 
nal devices, such as compact disc players and MIDI instruments. Most of 
HyperCard’s XCMDs and XFCNs should work with SuperCard, and you 
can import additional resources from other applications that use them. Fur- 
thermore, SuperCard has many of its own external commands, which are 
specific to its capabilities. 

I Voyager CD AudioStack 

If you’re interested in adding CD-quality sound to your HyperCard pre- 
sentations, it’s not likely that you’ll find a faster or easier way to do it than 
with the Voyager Company’s CD AudioStack. This versatile set of Hyper- 
Card stacks forms a tool kit that lets you control and play audio compact 
discs (and the audio portions of mixed-mode CDs) from your own Hyper- 
Card stacks by using your CD-ROM drive as the playback device. In fact, 
you can control up to six CD-ROM drives by using different SCSI ID 

CD AudioStack provides you with automatic installation of the necessary CD 
audio resources, a large collection of ready-made buttons to copy and paste 
into your stacks, ideas and suggestions for creating your own scripts, a 
ready-to-use remote control, and much more. Before you begin, however, 
you must be sure that the following files are in your System folder: Audio 
CD Access, Foreign File Access, and the system extension (INIT) that 
applies to your specific CD-ROM drive. 

The first step in using CD AudioStack involves the installation of the CD 
audio resources: the 29 CD XCMDs and XFCNs that work behind the 
scenes to control your CD-ROM drive. With AudioStack’s CD Resource 



Installer^ the process is simple and automatic, involving a couple of mouse 
clicks and a pop-up menu. If you install the resources into your Home 
stack, any other stack using that Home stack can issue CD commands if 
they’re configured to do so. If you install the resources into a specific stack, 
the CD commands will follow that stack no matter where it’s moved and 
will alwa}TS work. 

Once you’ve installed the necessary resources, you can easily add control 
fimctions to any HyperCard stack with the Ready-Made Button cards pro- 
vided with CD AudioStack. These cards contain over 40 buttons of various 
types that you can copy and paste onto your own cards. The buttons let 
you quickly design custom transport panels with controls that let you 
play, scan, pause, skip to the next track, eject, and more. 

If you’re not interested in creating a custom arrangement of buttons, you 
can use the CD Audio Controller (Figure 15.17), which looks and works 
like the remote-control unit for a CD player. To add this set of controls to 
your stack, just click the Copy CD Controller button on the card and paste 
it into your stack. The controller provides buttons for Play, Scan (forward 
and reverse), Next/Previous Track, Pause, and Eject. Below the transport 
buttons, two displays indicate the current track and elapsed time, and 
additional buttons provide even more fiinaions. 

At the heart of CD AudioStack, the Audio Event Maker (Figiure 15.18) 
enables you to define and control specific seaions of audio data. Audio 
compact discs can have up to 74 minutes of soimd divided into minutes, 
seconds, and blocks. A block is V75 second, and CD AudioStack and its Audio 
Event Maker can control a CD down to that level. The Audio Event Maker 
lets you specify events by indicating tracks (there can be up to 99 tracks on a 
compaa disc) and absolute time in minutes, seconds, and blocks. 

To define a passage of sound as an event, you enter the appropriate address 
locations in the Start and End boxes. The transpon controls at the bottom 
of the card let you navigate the CD to find the appropriate area. By clicking 
the pointing hands, you can automatically select the current location as the 
start or end point, and the plus and minus buttons let you adjust each set- 
ting. To hear your event, you can click the Play Event button. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


Figure 15.17 
The CD Audio 
Controller lets you 
play compact discs 
from any Hyper- 
Card stack. 

Uoyager CD fludioStack 1.2 

CD Audio Conti'oller 

Add this controller card to your 
own HyperCard stack and use 
this space to customize the 
controller for your application. 

lust copy the controller by clicking 
the button below, then paste it 
into your stack. Be sure you have 
also used the Script Installer so 
that your stack can use the audio 

Copy CD Controller 



Figure 15.18 

With the Audio 
Event Maker, you 
can create buttons 
that play specific 
segments of sound. 

Link TITIE: J.he Movies 
To CD Opera 

O Disc Time Time: Track .0.7. of V6. . 

(i) Track Time | 00:27 [ Track Length: 06:20:0.5 

SHOW: I Check Euent Option ~| 

13 Check for i 2 I secs before start/end 
3 Check for i 2 I secs after start/end 



07 00 ' 12 * 25 


07 00 ' 36 ‘ 62 




PMkEyes.:. Jh^. Barber of . . 
^.ville--. Rossini 




— ♦ - — ♦ - 



00 . 24 . 37 






1 Index II Track Search 

1 Clear All Entries 

1 New Event | 

1 Event List | 

jpind Eventlj 

Time Search 

1 Delete Event 

1 Insert Event | 

1 Button Card | 



When you’re satisfied with how your event sounds, you simply click on 
Make a Button to create a button that plays your event. The new button 
is pasted into the Button card, which serves as your scrapbook of buttons. 
Here you can customize the button by modifying and setting its font, icon, 
and style. Once you have a button that looks and acts the way you want it 
to, you can paste it into any HyperCard stack. You can also create an Event 
List that shows all of the events that you’ve described with the Audio Event 
Maker card. Finally, the Copy to Clipboard button lets you copy the Hyper- 
Talk script for any event to the Macintosh’s clipboard so that you can add 
it to your own scripts. 

Voyager CD AudioStack holds great potential for adding all kinds of high- 
fidelity recordings of music, speech, and sound effects to your HyperCard 
stacks. With the tools that it provides, you can easily produce elaborate 
interactive presentations that combine the accessibility of HyperCard 
with CD-quality audio. 

SI interFACE 

InterFACE, from Bright Star Technology, is an unusual product that holds 
great potential for enhancing many presentations and other kinds of appli- 
cations. It’s designed primarily to create animated talking heads that convey 
information in a more effective and compelling way than by using plain 
dialog boxes and text fields. Having someone greet you with synchronized 
speech and facial movements is not only entertaining but it also adds a 
friendly quality to programs, improving their user interfaces and making 
them seem more accessible. 

Each character that you see on screen consists of a group of facial images 
that, when combined in a series, create the appearance of movement. These 
collections of images are stored as files called actors. By animating an actor, 
s)mchronizing it with soimd, and presenting it on saeen, you aeate an agent. 
The technique of creating movement from a series of images is hardly 
a new one, but interFACE approaches the process of animation from a 
completely different angle than the traditional method. Rather than using 
a preset linear sequence of images, interFACE uses a type of random-access 
animation that Bright Star calls HyperAnimation. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


To create a talking agent with this type of animation, you begin with a 
collection of predefined images that form an inventory of different mouth 
positions and facial expressions. The computer then displays each image as 
needed and includes it in a series that creates the appropriate movements. 
Random-access animation allows you to call up any image in any order for 
any amount of time. And because the images can be recombined and reused 
over and over, random-access animation reduces not only the size of the 
animation files but also the amount of time it takes to create them. This 
nonlinear approach to animation impans an almost spontaneous quality to 
interFACE’s agents, and it allows you to generate a seemingly endless num- 
ber of variations in movement from a relatively small number of individual 
frames. By creating different mouth positions to represent the basic units of 
speech, called phonemes, you can have a talking agent that is capable of 
saying virtually anything. 

Creating Actors 

InterFACE allows you to create three different types of actors that range 
from simple to complex. A Standard actor uses 8 Speaking Images^ an 
Extended actor uses 1 5 images^ and a Coarticulated actor uses 32. Using 
actors with more speaking positions produces smoother animation and 
more lifelike agents, but requires more memory. Aside from the Speaking 
Images, actors can also have Expression Images, which are added during 
pauses or when the actor isn’t speaking. You can add as many Expression 
Images as you want to an aaor until the total number of images reaches 120. 

To begin creating an actor, you first enter the Dressing Room (Figure 15.19). 
This part of the program provides a complete set of paint tools, along with 
import and export capabilities, actor resizing and conversion commands, 
and several animation tools. The Dressing Room window houses the Easel, 
which appears as a blank, shadowed field when you first open the program. 
This is where you draw or paste the images that make up your actor. 

Images can range from the simplest line drawings and cartoons to more 
sophisticated artwork. For even greater realism, you can use digitized 
pictures of actual people, who can pose with different mouth positions 
representing the different phonemes. Even people with little artistic skill 
can achieve surprisingly good results. To help you even more, interFACE 



Figure 15.19 

The Dressing 
Room provides a 
number of drawing 
and painting tools, 
an Easel, and a 
Control window to 
use as a guide. 

provides a generous assortment of clip art, which includes all of the basic 
mouth positions along with other body parts and accessories (Figure 15.20). 

To help you draw your mouth positions correctly, interFACE provides 
the Control window, which displays the name and number of each Speak- 
ing Image along with a pair of lips to use as a guide. The lips display the 
Key Image, which you can change by cycling through the different mouth 
positions with the scroll bar in the window. As each Key Image changes, 
the actor image in the Easel changes with it, allowing you to view and com- 
pare your drawings. If you want, you can also add some Expression Images, 
like blinks and smiles, to enhance the actor’s appeal. 

When you’re finished in the Dressing Room, you next move on to the 
Stage to test the speaking animation of your actor. In the Stage window 
(Figure 15.21), you can type (phonetically) anything you want your aaor to 
say. When you choose Talk, interFACE automatically generates the appro- 
priate speech— using MacinTalk— and simultaneously accesses the corre- 
sponding Speaking Images to create a fully synchronized talking head. You can 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


test your Expression Images in the Express window by typing in the appropri- 
ate commands in interFACE’s scripting language. If the aaor’s speech 

is too slow or the pitch is too low, you can change both parameters in the 
MacinTalk window and the actor will stay synchronized. 

Figure 15.20 

InterFACE sup- 
plies a good assort- 
ment of clip art to 
help you create 
your actors. 

Figure 15.21 

The Stage lets you 
test your actors 
with MacinTalk. 
The digitized actor 
shown here is one 
of several that come 
with interFACE. 



At this point in the process, you could just stop and still have a perfectly 
usable agent that could talk your ear off about anything, whenever you 
type the corresponding text into the program. But anyone who has heard 
MacinTalk knows that it does not produce the most elegant or mellifluous- 
sounding speech. In fact, by today’s standards, it sotmds too much like a 
robot and not enough like a real person. So, in most cases, most people 
will want to proceed to the next step, which takes place in the Speech 
Sync seaion of interFACE. 

Speech Sync 

Speech Sync lets you synchronize your actors to digitized recordings 
of actual people. This not only allows an agent to speak with a natural- 
sounding voice but you can derive your recordings from a variety of 
sources^ such as the head of a company, a famous actor, or your best 
friend. In fact you can have your agent sing a song or speak with several 
different voices, or in different languages if you want. 

The process of synchronizing animation and sound in interFACE involves 
four steps. The first step is to acquire the necessary sound. You can import 
sounds from a variety of applications, or you can make your own recordings 
from within Sound Sync. InterFACE includes its own MacRecorder win- 
dow (Figure 15.22), which lets you make recordings without leaving the 
program. After plugging in your MacRecorder, you simply select a sam- 
pling rate, set the recording time, and click the Record button. As you 
speak, a thermometer-style Record Time Bar indicates the elapsed time 
until you click the mouse to end the recording. When you stop, the new 
recording becomes the current sound and interFACE automatically saves 
it for you. 

Once you have a voice recording that you like, you can proceed to the next 
step in the synchronization process. This involves entering text into Speech 
Sync that represents the words that are spoken in the sound that you’ve just 
recorded or imported. The words that you type into the Text window are 
used as a guide to the spoken words in your recording. 

You initiate the third step in the process by clicking the Convert button 
in the Text window. InterFACE then breaks the text into its phonetic ele- 
ments and displays them as a RECITE command in the Recite window 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


(Figure 15.23). RECITE is a special R/WE command that plays a sound 
along with a sequence of images. 

The RECITE command represents speech as a series of phoneme labels 
and numeric values called a Phonetic/Timing Value String. The word wel- 
come would be broken down into the following phonemes: EH, L, K, 

AH, M. These correspond to the Speaking Images that you created for the 

Figure 15.22 

With the MacRe- 
corder window, you 
can make record- 
ings without leav- 
ing the program. 


From Ftrftilor^ Computing, Inc. 

- Sampling Rate - 
^ 22 kHz 
II kHz 
7 kHz 
5 kHz 
4:1 comp 

Sound Name 


^ % 





Figure 15.23 
In Speech Sync 
you break down the 
spoken text into its 
phonetic elements. 



current actor in the Dressing Room. Between each phoneme, a number (repre- 
senting one-sixtieth of a second) indicates how long each image appears on 
screen. The RECITE command causes the soimd to play while simultane- 
ously starting the animation specified by the Phonetic/Timing Value String. 

Although your actor may be perfectly synchronized when speaking 
with MacinTalk, it’s unlikely that it will still be in sync when you switch to 
a recorded soimd. Because people have different idiomatic speaking styles 
and use different cadences when they talk, you’ll have to adjust the anima- 
tion to fit the recorded voice. The final step, therefore, in synchronizing 
your images to sound involves increasing or decreasing the timing values 
in the RECITE command to accommodate the recording. You can also 
change the phoneme labels, if necessary, and add Expression Images where 
appropriate. Since this step involves a fair amount of trial and error, it will 
likely be the most time-consuming. 

Once your agent is complete, you can import it into HyperCard or a 
number of other applications to use in things like online help systems, 
advertising, telecommunications, education, and entertainment. You’re also 
not limited to using interFACE for only animating talking heads. You can 
use the same animation tools to produce a wide variety of animated se- 
quences. Agents aren’t limited to just talking either. They can play musical 
instruments and use sound effects as well. The interFACE package includes 
a large assortment of ready-made actors both drawn and digitized, in color 
and black and white. The online help, easy tutorial, and thorough docu- 
mentation make the program enjoyable to use. 

At Your Service 

At Your Service (also from Bright Star) offers an excellent glimpse into 
the potential for using interFACE agents as part of your daily routine. This 
standalone desk accessory uses an actor named Phil to greet you when you 
start up or shut down your computer. But Phil can do much more than 
that. If you’re using Microsoft Mail 3.0 or CE QuickMail, Phil can come 
on screen to announce the arrival of electronic mail and offer you the 
option of reading it now or later. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


Phil also keeps an eye on your health. The Health Watch Service Panel 
lets you specify how long you want to work before taking a break. Phil then 
monitors your activity level and if you exceed the Activity Limit, he pops 
up to remind you of the dangers of repetitive strain injury and offers advice 
on treatment and prevention. 

One of Phil’s most useful jobs is to remind you of appointments, birthdays, 
meetings, deadlines, and things to do. The Reminder Service Panel (Fig- 
ure 15.24) offers to alen you to a number of different types of occasions and 
lets you specify how often they occur. At the appropriate time, Phil politely 
interrupts to call your attention to each important event. 

Figure 15.24 

By using the 
Reminder Service 
Panel, you can have 
Phil alert you to a 
variety of important 

Rt Vour Seruice 


3 On 

[i^ Anniversary 

m Deadline 

[3 Phone 

[B] Appointment 

[ffil Holiday 

[31 Reminder 

H Birthday 

0TO Do 

@ Break 


@ Travel 

1 I :35 AM 1 1 2/19/92 | 

>/0nce Only 

Enter tent here. 


! ri-i 


X El 





[ OK ] [ Cancel ) [ Demo ] 

At Your Service provides four versions of Phil, each requiring a different 
amount of memory. You can choose either a drawn or digitized version in 
black and white or color. If you get tired of Phil or just want a change of 
gender. Bright Star sells additional actors in a variety of types. My current 
favorite is Gabrielle, who greets me in the morning with a pretty smile 
and a French accent. 



si MediaTracks 

MediaTracks, from Farallon Computing, provides the tools necessary 
to create a variety of interactive presentations that work extremely well as 
training programs, guided tours, desktop help systems, product demonstra- 
tions, and tutorials. It does this by allowing you to record the Macintosh’s 
screen activity and then edit and save the recording for later replay as a 
standalone presentation or from within HyperCard or other applications. 

The MediaTracks package actually consists of three component parts. 
ScreenRecorder is a desk accessory that lets you record the screen activity 
of a Macintosh session, in real time, and save it as a file called a tape. The 
MediaTracks editor allows you to modify and combine tapes and add sound 
to transform them into finished presentations. And the MT Player is a sep- 
arate application that plays the tapes created with ScreenRecorder. 

You begin recording your session by choosing ScreenRecorder from the 
Apple menu, which produces a small control panel with transport-like but- 
tons on it. Clicking Record opens a dialog box that prompts you to name 
the recording. When you type in a name and click Save, the dialog box and 
control panel disappear and recording begins immediately, evidenced by the 
tiny tape-cassette icon in the menu bar. From that point on, all screen activ- 
ity will be recorded (in black and white), including such things as pointer 
and cursor movements, menu choices, window openings, icon selections, 
warning beeps, and specific activities within an application. 

When you have a tape that you like, you can close ScreenRecorder and 
begin refining your recorded session by opening the MediaTracks applica- 
tion, with its MediaTracks Presentation window (Figure 15.25). The Pre- 
sentation window displays your tape as a strip of film across the middle 
of the window, just below a time ruler that indicates elapsed seconds. At 
the bottom of the window, there are several Edit buttons and a scroll bar. 
Above these controls a narrow strip— the Sound track— lets you add 
sounds to your presentation. 

The first step in turning your ScreenRecorder tape into a MediaTracks 
presentation is to subdivide the tape into smaller segments called clips. By 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


using the Mark button on the Playback Control Panel (Figure 15.26), you 
can convert the tape into a series of clips, which you can then cut, copy, 
paste, and delete as needed. Later you can also add sound, graphics, text, 
color, and interactive buttons to the clips. 

Figure 15.25 

The MediaTracks 
Presentation win- 
dow, showing 
several clips with 
sounds attached 

Figure 15.26 
With the Mark 
button on the 
Playback Control 
Panel, you can 
subdivide a tape 
into a series of 

Creating clips is simple: Just play the tape and click the Mark button at 
key locations or transitions. Each clip appears in the Tape track with a min- 
iature screen shot called a stilly followed by a seaion of gray to indicate the 
total length of the clip. To help identify each of the clips, you can add de- 
scriptive labels below them, and if you have a color system, you can 
also assign them different colors. 

When you finish making and editing your clips and you’re satisfied with 
the visuals, you can add sound to enhance the presentation. There are sev- 
eral ways of adding sound to a MediaTracks presentation and a number of 
options that enable you to synchronize the sound to the visuals. If you have 
a MacRecorder digitizer, you can record directly into MediaTracks by using 



the Record Sound dialog box (Figure 15.27). Before recording, you can 
choose one of four sampling rates— 22, 11,7, and 5 kHz— and one of four 
optional compression ratios— 3:1, 4:1, 6:1, and 8:1. The Record Limit pop- 
up menu lets you specify the maximum amount of memory devoted to the 
recording, so the soundfile won’t get too large for some end-users. 

Figure 15.27 

The Record Sound 
dialog box lets you 
record and import 
sounds for your 

Record Sound... 

Record Type: | Best (22KHzI 
Record Limit: | 512K ~ 

MacRecorder: 0[5| 


Best (22KHz) 




5.0 Seconds 

i|i Ol ' B 


[ Cancel ] 

([ Done i) 

The first three buttons in the Record Sound dialog box are for recording, 
playing, and setting input levels. The fourth one— the Get Sound button- 
enables you to import sounds from other sources. MediaTracks lets you use 
any sounds saved in the Audio IFF and SoundEdit file formats as well as 
SND sound resource files, such as those used in HyperCard or other 
MediaTracks presentations. Additionally, you can copy sounds from the 
Clipboard or from MacRecorder’s SoundEdit application directly to 
the Presentation window. 

When you attach a sound to a clip in the Presentation window, a small 
speaker icon appears in the Sound track with a waveform-like line to the 
right of it representing the length of the sound. If you need to, you can 
cut, copy, and paste sounds from clip to clip. In some cases a segment of 
dialogue or music may last longer than the clip it goes with. To keep things 
synchronized, and to prevent sounds from overlapping into the neighboring 
clips, MediaTracks provides two options for adjusting the playback timing 
of individual clips. You can use the Playback Speed dialog box to increase 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


or decrease the playback speed of any clip (or group of clips), or you can 
use the Aaions dialog box to introduce a pause during a clip’s playback. To 
pause playback of a clip, you first open the Actions dialog box (Figure 15.28) 
and then choose For Sound from the Pause menu. MediaTracks will then 
cause that clip to wait until the attached soimd has finished playing before 
it moves on to the next clip. If you prefer, you can specify a number of 
seconds to pause playback instead. 

Figure 15.28 

With the Actions 
dialog box, you can 
make a clip wait for 
its attached sound 
to finish. 


— Start of Clip 

HyperCard Message: 

Pausei P For Seconds | 
P l.5| Seconds 

End of Clip 



For User Rction 
For Seconds 


1 Of Smiml 


( Cancel ) 

To further enhance your projects, MediaTracks provides a Drawing win- 
dow, which offers several common drawing tools, along with the ability to 
add colors, text, boxes, arrows, and other graphics. Of particular impor- 
tance in the use of sound, the Drawing window lets you create buttons and 
assign specific actions to them. By selecting the Button tool, you can quickly 
and easily create a button anywhere in the Drawing window. You then use 
the Button Info dialog box to determine the button’s appearance and to 
assign it an action. If you choose Play Sound from the Action menu, click- 
ing the button will play the soxmd attached to that clip as long as the clip is 
in progress. You can also have Pause and Continue buttons to allow the 
user to set the pace while viewing the presentation. 

Because MediaTracks and HyperCard are a natural combination for multi- 
media, Farallon includes an MTPlay XCMD that lets you play your tapes 
from within HyperCard. By using the MTPlay HyperCard Installer stack, 
you can add buttons to any H 3 T>erCard stacks or write your own Hyper- 
Talk scripts to play your MediaTracks presentations. 



si Paracomp Magic 

Paracomp Magic is part of the gaggle of popular animation and multimedia 
programs currently offered by MacroMind/Paracomp. Unlike Director, 
however. Magic is better suited to users with little prior multimedia experi- 
ence and more modest needs for creating original artwork and animation. 

Its graphic approach to assembling presentations combined with its ability 
to import artwork and animation from other sources will, nonetheless, 
make this program appealing to a great many people of all levels. 

To help you conceptualize its structme, Paracomp Magic uses the meta- 
phor of a theater. Graphic elements and text are called actors and the dis- 
play area, called the stage, presents the actions and artwork in distina scenes. To 
begin forming a presentation, therefore, you must first create or import the 
actors and place them on the stage in the current scene. 

For developing and assembling your scenes, you begin in Draw mode, 
where the program provides a large Stage window and several movable 
palettes (Figure 15.29). The Tool palette in the upper left provides several 
common tools for creating graphics out of shapes, lines, and text. The Cos- 
tume palette, directly beneath the Tool palette, lets you assign each actor 
a fill pattern with a different foreground and background color. You can 
also change the line width, pattern, and color and set the transparency 
level for each actor. 

Clicking the large button at the top of the Tool palette lets you select one 
of several additional modes for developing your visuals. The Shape mode 
enables you to modify an actor’s appearance by altering its outline. In 
the Move mode, you can draw simple paths for animating the different 
actors using the same shapes and lines that you use in Draw mode. The 
Pan and Mask modes apply to imported graphics. 

To view the interactions of the actors on the Stage, you can use the Con- 
trol palette to play through the scene. It provides a frame counter and sev- 
eral buttons to play in forward and reverse, to step through frames one at 
a time, or to skip to the beginning or end of the scene. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


Figure 15.29 
You use Paracomp 
Magic’s Stage 
window to create, 
modify, and ani- 
mate graphic ele- 
ments called actors. 

After you’ve created all of the aaors in a scene and you’ve established their 
positions and movements, you can open the Cue palette to ftuther control 
and synchronize your graphic elements. The Cue palette (Figure 15.30) is 
actually a window that provides a tvnelme along the top showing elapsed 
time in 10-frame increments. At the bottom of the window, all of the actors 
in the current scene are listed opposite their lifespans— ihin rectangular bars 
that show when, and for how long, each actor appears on the Stage. 

You can select any actor by clicking on its lifespan, which turns from white 
to gray, indicating that it is the current selection. Each actor can have one 
or more of six attributes, which consist of animation effects, transitions, and 
sound. When you select an actor, the attributes associated with that actor 
appear as gray bars in the upper half of the Cue palette. The Move attrib- 
ute bar, for instance, shows when the actor begins to move and how many 
frames it takes to complete its motion. The Fill In/Out attribute refers to 
how and when one of several transitions will affect the appearance or disap- 
pearance of the actor’s filled area. Line In/Out works the same way. When 
you create a new scene, all of the lifespans and attribute bars are given a 



Figure 15.30 

The Cue palette 
shows each actor 
and its correspond- 
ing attributes along 
a timeline marked 
in frames. 

default value of 50 frames, which you can increase or decrease by dragging 
the grab handles on the bars. You can also fade in and fade out attributes 
and move actors and their attributes to new locations along the timeline. 

Sounds are treated as attributes and attached to individual actors in the 
Cue palette. Sound attributes, however, appear as only a single grab handle, 
which indicates the starting point of the sound in relation to the timeline. 
You can import any SND sound resource file with the Import command 
and add the sound to the Sound List. Once the sound appears in the Sound 
List, you simply attach it to the current actor by clicking on the Sound 
attribute icon in the Cue palette and selecting it from the pop-up menu. 

You can also copy sounds to and from the Scrapbook and paste them into 
the Sound List for selection. If you have MacRecorder or a Macintosh with 
built-in recording capability, you can record your own sounds to add to the 
Sound List. Paracomp Magic provides a simple sound-recording dialog box 
that lets you make recordings up to 10 seconds long and add them directly 
to the Sound List. 

Once youVe attached a sound to an aaor, you can move the sound to any 
position along the timeline. The sound will then play from that point until it’s 
finished or until another sound interrupts it. Because Paracomp Magic only 
allows you to play one sound at any given time, a more recent sound, even 
from across scenes, will cut off and replace an earlier sound’s playback. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


One additional feature worth noting is Paracomp Magic’s ability to create 
links between scenes. By using the Link palette, you can create buttons, or 
turn any existing aaors into buttons, that link the current scene to any other 
specified scene in the presentation. This enables you to produce fully inter- 
active presentations that let you navigate from scene to scene in a non- 
sequential order by clicking the appropriate buttons. 

Each link can have a transition like those in the Cue palette. But these 
are full-screen transitions that gradually replace the current scene with the 
destination scene using one of several effects. The Link palette also offers 
an additional transition option called Movie. Choosing the Movie option 
lets you import an animated sequence to use as a transition. 

Paracomp Magic includes an application called QuickPICS that com- 
presses and enhances the playback of animations in the PICS file format. 
QuickPICS works well for use in interactive productions because its unique 
compression scheme improves animation speed and reduces RAM 
requirements by allowing playback directly from your hard disk. Quick- 
PICS enables you to import PICS format animations from a variety of 
sources and use them as transitions between scenes. You can even save 
animated sequences from Paracomp Magic itself to use as transitions in 
the same presentation or elsewhere. 

QuickPICS lets you include a soundfile with the graphic information 
in a movie (Figure 15.31). You can create the sound with MacRecorder’s 
SoundEdit application or any program that supports the SoundEdit file 
format. The sound that you attach to a QuickPICS movie starts when 
the animation begins and plays until the end of the soundfile or until the 
animation finishes— whichever comes first. 

To resolve the problem of mismatched soimd and animation lengths, 
QuickPICS provides a feature that adjusts the playback of the animation 
to accommodate the sound. Choosing the Frame Rate Based on Sound 
option automatically adjusts the animation’s frame rate so that the sound 
and visuals will begin and end together. Without this feature, finding the 
appropriate frame rate could involve much trial and error. 



Figure 15.31 

QuickPICS lets 
you include a 
soundfUe with an 
animation ftle. 

Untitled 1 

PICS file: 

|lock C Key PICS 

1 I'O ! 

i Ticks Per Frame 


Fil« Stte : 1 20K 

Frame Sire 96 x 288 

28 Fr«m«s 

Time 0 05 (300 ticks) 

[ Options... ] 


Sound File: 

1 Music Intro. 


[( Pack to Disk... ] 


File Size 11 OK 

Covers 28 frames 

Time 0 05 (300 ticks) 

0 Frame Rate Based On Sound 

( I'loy-- 1 


Finally, in an effort to make Paracomp Magic immediately usable, 
MacroMind/Paracomp includes several additional disks with tutorial files, 
business presentation templates, and samples of backgrounds, animations, 
sounds, and 3-D models. These extra materials should give you a head 
start in exploring the program’s potential, especially for producing cor- 
porate-style presentations. 

m Hookup! 

HookUp!, from VPL Research, Inc., is a unique and creative piece of 
software. Designed as a programming construction kit, it lets you create 
your own software for animation, music, and sound. The great appeal of 
this product lies in the fact that people with no knowledge of programming 
techniques can produce applications ranging from very simple to quite 

Rather than typing lines of code, you drag graphic icons from a toolbox 
and connect them with software “wires.” The result looks much like a 
schematic flowchart, with graphics and icons representing standard pro- 
gramming operations involving clocks, counters, switches, sequences, 
arithmetic, and logic operators (Figure 15.32). HookUp! is fully interactive 
and functions in real time. Its inputs can be from the mouse (click and/or 
position), MIDI devices, software buttons, and sliders. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


Figure 15.32 

HookUp! uses 
graphic icons and 
software “wires” to 
create real-time 

In its current release, HookUp! is limited to importing documents from 
early versions of MacroMind Director (or Video Works II) as its source of 
animation. To use sounds other than those that come with HookUp!, you 
must use the Sound-to-Video II utility that came with the earlier versions of 
Director. You can then import SND sound resource files into the HookUp! 
directory and include them in your animations. 

Sounds are started by a trigger input to a sound icon, which in turn can be 
controlled by other operations in the schematic. You can use MIDI devices 
to input and generate music, although only note on, note off, and velocity 
messages are recognized. Combining MIDI with graphics in an interactive 
environment provides an opportunity for some very creative programming. 
Animated figures and graphics can change in response to pitch or velocity 
output from a keyboard. Or sounds from a MIDI device can respond to 
animation, which itself is being manipulated in real time by the end user. 
HookUp! includes a library of digitized sounds and some samples of ani- 
mation to get you staned. 

VPL Research has also developed a high-end version of HookUp!, called 
Body Elearic, which includes real-time 3-D animation capabilities and 



allows you to import PICS files. Body Electric comes as part of a virtual- 
reality hardware/software package that also includes enhanced audio 

81 Studio/1 

Studio/ 1, from Electronic Arts, is a full-featured black-and-white graphics 
program with animation capabilities. The animations are created as a se- 
quence of images in the traditional flip-book style, and Studio/ 1 lets you 
place any Type 1 SND resource sound on any frame in the sequence. 

The procedure is very simple: Locate the frame where you want the sound 
to occur, and click the Sound button in the Control Panel (Figure 15.33). 
This opens the Load a Sound dialog box, which lists the available sounds. 
Clicking on the names in the Ust lets you audition them. When you’ve 
made a selection, click the Load Sound button to place that sound in the 
current frame. The Control Panel then displays the sound’s name next to 
the Sound button. The procedure for adding subsequent sounds is very 

Figure 15.33 

Studio/ Ts Control 
Panel provides a 
Sound button that 
lets you attach a 
sound to a specific 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


In Studio/ 1, a sound is linked to a specific frame so that the sound plays 
as the frame plays. You can add sounds to as many frames as you like, but 
only one sound per frame. Studio/ 1 ignores pitch setting and looping 
information and does not play stereo or compressed sounds. 

A sound will play until it ends or imtil the next frame with a sound inter- 
rupts it. For best results, Electronic Ans recommends that you use sound 
effects with quick attacks and releases. They also point out that having too 
many digitized sounds in a single document may slow down the playback 
speed of a Studio/ 1 animation. Studio/ 1 is HyperCard-compatible. 

I PROmotion 

PROmotion, from Motion Works, is a sophisticated and versatile animation 
program that makes the process of animation accessible to the average user 
without sacrificing power or flexibility. With PROmotion you can create 
text, graphics, and animation, and combine them with imported still video, 
full-motion video, 3-D images, and sound to produce fully interactive mul- 
timedia presentations. 

A PROmotion animation consists of a number of elements. The movable 
objects that appear in the foreground are called actors^ and each actor is 
composed of a series of individual images called cels. To cause an actor to 
move, you assign it to an animation path^ a series of points that the aaor 
follows. Each point along the path represents the actor’s position in that 
frame. By displaying the actor’s cels in sequence along the series of points 
in a path, you create the illusion of movement. The speed of an actor 
depends on the number of points in a path and how far apart they are. 
Background objects, called propSy consist of single cels and provide the 
stage settings for the actors. Once they become part of an animation, 
you can assign transitions and visual effects to props. 

When you first open a new animation screen in PROmotion, a large 
window appears, accompanied on the left by a movable palette called the 
Media Controller (Figure 15.34). This acts as the control center for your 
animations by providing a set of transport buttons and several icons that 
enable you to create, edit, and manipulate the actors, props, sounds, 
and other elements that form your animation. 



Figure 15.34 
PROmotion pro- 
vides its Media 
Controller for 
controlling and 
editing animations. 
The Paint palette 
supplies tools for 
creating and modi- 
fying actors and 

For creating and modifying your actors and props, PROmotion provides a 
full-featured 24-bit color paint program, which includes a Paint palette with 
several standard tools and a number of additional icons for producing spe- 
cial effects and transformations. Along the bottom of the palette, a row of 
arrows lets you cycle through an actor’s cels. 

You can add an SND resource sound to any frame in your animation by 
clicking the Add Sound icon (the small loudspeaker) on the Media Control- 
ler. This opens the Selea a Sound dialog box (Figure 15.35), which lists the 
available sounds. On the right the selected sound appears as a waveform 
display with relevant information about the sound below it. If the Preview 
option box is checked, you can hear each sound when you click on it. The 
Import button lets you add sounds from other programs, and the remaining 
buttons let you duplicate, rename, and remove sounds. 

PROmotion also lets you make your own recordings to include in your anima- 
tions. If you have a recording device such as MacRecorder or Voice Impact 
Pro, or you own one of the Macs with built-in recording capabilities, you can 
click on the New button. This opens a standard recording dialog box, like the 
one described in Chapter 16. With the controls in the dialog box, you can 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


Figure 15.35 
The Select a 
Sound dialog box 
lists available 
sounds and shows 
their waveforms. 

Select a sound... 


[ Ncui... ] 











[ Rename ] 
[ Remoue ] 


ll JJ 

Sampling Rate: 1 1 kHz. 

SPreuiem ( None 


[ Cancel ) 

Sira: 8 K 
Langth: 1 sacond 

make a recording and add it to the list of available sounds. Once you have the 
sound that you want— whether by imponing it, recording it, or selecting it 
from the available sounds— you can add it to any frame in the current 

Clicking the Add button opens the Sound Information dialog box (Fig- 
ure 15.36), which lets you adjust any sound that you’ve added to your ani- 
mation. The name of the sound appears at the top of the dialog box next to 
the Sound Selection icon. To change sounds, you can click on the icon, 
which reopens the Select a Sound dialog box enabling you to make a new 
selection. Each sound appears with its playing time shown in seconds and 
in number of frames. 

Using the Start Frame and End Frame fields, you can change where the 
sound occurs and how long it plays. When you first add a sound, the start 
frame defaults to the frame that the animation was on at the time the sound 
was added, and the end frame defaults to the end of the animation. A sound 
will begin playing at the start frame and continue until it’s finished or until 
it reaches the end frame. If a sound is shorter than its assigned animation 
segment, you can select the Repeat Sound option to loop the sound over 
and over until the end frame arrives. You can also fade in and fade out a 
sound and set its overall volume with a pop-up menu. 

With PROmotion you can have as many as 100 sounds in an animation, 
with up to 16 sounds occurring at once. Whether or not your particular 



Figure 15.36 
The Sound Infor- 
mation dialog box 
lets you set a 
sound’s parameters. 

Sound Information... 

Sound: g^UIhlsUe 

Playing Time: 0 seconds, or ^2 frames 
^ Fade In 

Start Frame: 1 46 
End Frame 


□ Fade Out 
^ Repeat Sound 

Priority; | I ▼! Uolume: r 7 

Channel: Ql-eft ® Center O Right 

[ Edit Sound... ] [ Cancel ) OK ]] 

Macintosh will handle 16 sounds simultaneously depends on the model that 
you have and its available memory. Because of this, if you produce an ani- 
mation on one model of computer and play it back on another, you 
may lose some of the sounds. 

To give you more control over this potential problem, PROmotion provides 
a Priority pop-up menu, which lets you assign a priority setting (from 1 to 
16) for each sound that you add to an animation. This ensures that a more 
important sound won’t get cut off by a background sound if the Mac has 
reached its limit. If, for example, you have five sounds assigned to play on a 
particular frame and your Macintosh only supports two channels of sound, 
the two sounds with the highest priority will be heard. The Channel selec- 
tor lets you choose which of the Mac’s audio output channels the sound 
will play through. All Macs can play through the left channel, but only 
Macs with stereo capability can also access the right channel. 

Once you’ve assembled your animation and added sounds, timings, cues 
(see below), and other elements, you can view all of these objects together 
in the TimeLines window (Figure 15.37). This gives you an overview of 
the presentation and lets you perform certain editing ftmetions. Each object 
in the presentation appears on the left with a descriptive icon and a name. 
To the right of each name, a tmeline shows the number of frames used by 
each object and when the object appears in the animation. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


Figure 15.37 
The TitneLines 
window gives you 
an oven’iew of your 

a .1 . I 'I . i 


ntUnvs for Antfoioollon _ 

1, ip ^ zp 40 50 60 61: 

J * I ! I I ■ 

B Banana 1 

Q Shadow 

E] ^ Adam 2 
IS Cindy 

* i 

1 1 I'j 

(S tf£>Adam 

B <]i;^ Splat 
B <J^jump 

, 1 V; 

0 ^ wait 2 seo 
IS ^ wait 1 sae 

Start ; End 

You can drag sounds and other elements to new positions along the time- 
line, and you can stretch or shrink the timelines to change their durations. 
Clicking on a sound opens its Sound Information dialog box, allowing you 
to make changes to the sound’s parameters. The icons along the top of the 
window let you select which elements will appear in the TimeLines win- 
dow, and you can turn objects off and on with the check boxes on the left. 

In addition to its other sound-handling features, PROmotion provides ex- 
tensive editing capabilities from within the program. Clicking on the Edit 
Soimd button in the Sound Information dialog box opens the Edit Wave- 
form dialog box (Figure 15.38). It displays the sound as a waveform that 
you can view and edit in a variety of ways by using the buttons below 
the scroll bar. 

The Zoom In button gives you a closer look at the waveform, while the 
Zoom Out button provides a better overview. The Louder and Softer but- 
tons change the amplitude of the waveform (or a selected portion) in steps. 
The Echo button repeats the waveform or selected area with a decay, and 
the Backward button simply plays the sound in reverse. The Play button 
plays the entire sound or its selected region. 

Option-clicking the first four buttons provides additional functions. The 
Zoom buttons become Lower Hz and Raise Hz buttons, enabling you to 
change the frequency of a sound. The Louder and Softer buttons become 



Figure 15.38 
PROmotion pro- 
vides a number of 
capabilities with its 
Edit Waveform 
dialog box. 

Edit liloueForm for Sound: 

V.-.v'A '{ . f • 



Af 'Vlfl % ^ 

Zoom In Zoom Out Loudor Softer Echo 

M -<>li 

&ackw«rds Ploy 

tpr«ssion / I ? 

~|Ti I [ Cancel ] |^_SaueJ 

Ramp Up and Ramp Down buttons, which let you fade a selected area in 
or out. Finally, the Compression pop-up menu at the bottom of the dialog 
box lets you apply 3:1 or 6:1 compression to a sound when it’s saved. 

To create a fully interactive presentation, PROmotion provides cues to 
trigger additional actions. Using cues, you can make actors and props 
behave like buttons and, by sending Apple Events to other applications, 
PROmotion enables you to control external devices, like CD players, video- 
disc players, and MIDI instruments. In addition to its ability to import and 
export PICT and PICS files, PROmotion can also turn its animations 
into QuickTime movies, or it can play QuickTime movies from within 
a PROmotion presentation. Additionally, PROmotion allows you to print 
your animations to video. 

If you do a lot of work with HyperCard, you might want to consider ADD- 
motion II, another product from Motion Works. ADDmotion II is very 
similar to PROmotion except that it’s fully integrated with HyperCard and 
allows you to create and play your presentations from within your Hyper- 
Card stacks. 

Adding Sound to Desktop Presentations 


I Final Thoughts 

The products covered in this chapter illustrate well the tremendous wealth 
of software that exists for creating desktop presentations on the Macintosh. 
The available choices range from simple animation programs with limited 
soimd capabilities to powerful high-end multimedia packages that can ac- 
cess external devices, MIDI instruments, and multiple internal sound 

All of the animation programs mentioned here can include 8-bit digitized 
sotmds, but how the programs implement sound and how much flexibility 
they provide varies considerably from one product to the next. Many of the 
products are so idiosyncratic in their design that they may appeal to you on 
that basis alone. It’s important, however, to keep in mind the overall audio- 
visual balance when you evaluate a program’s potential. 

You also have to take into account what the final form of your projea will 
be. Some of the low-end programs might work just fine for presentations 
that you’ll distribute on a floppy disk. On the other hand, for full-blown 
multimedia in front of a live audience, there is no question that the ability 
to include audio from CD players, MIDI instruments, and other high- 
fidelity sources will add considerably to the impact and effectiveness of 
your presentations. 


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Sound and 
the Systenn 

Mac users would certainly agree that computers and soimd were meant 
to go together. Sound can be much more than just fun; it can add an im- 
portant new dimension to working with a keyboard and monitor. The origi- 
nal design teams that developed the Macintosh knew this to be true, and 
Apple has wisely continued its support for sound by continually evolving 
the Mac’s system software to accommodate bigger and better audio 

Now that multimedia has burst upon the scene, the magic of sound has 
been thrust from the backgroimd into the limelight. Software developers 
from all over are finding ways to put the Macintosh’s built-in audio skills to 
good use for enhancing presentations. In this chapter I’ll examine how the 
Macintosh system software handles its audio responsibilities and helps pre- 
sentations to come alive with sound. 

Bl Sound Manager 

From the very start, Macs have had the ability to play back digital audio 
without the need for additional hardware. In fact, this is one of the things 
that has distinguished the Macintosh from other, more mtmdane, comput- 
ing platforms. The Sound Manager (which replaces the now obsolete 
Sound Driver) is a collection of routines that allows applications to create, 
modify, and play sounds directly from the Macintosh’s speaker or through 
the output jack on its rear panel. 



The Sound Manager is responsible for providing a long list of important 
audio functions, including playing simple sequences of pitches, playing and 
recording sampled sounds, and producing alert sounds. An enhanced 
Sound Manager that has been in use with system versions 6.0.7 and later 
adds several additional features, including the ability to mix and synchro- 
nize multiple channels of sampled sound, the ability to play sounds stored 
on disk while other processing continues, and the ability to compress and 
decompress sounds. 

Sounding Off 

The Macintosh creates sound when the Sound Manager sends the appro- 
priate data to the on-board digital-to-analog converter, which translates the 
digital data into an analog audio signal for playback (see Chapter 10). The 
Mac II family of computers and the more recent models also have a second 
D/A converter chip to provide stereo output as well as an Apple Soimd 
Chip, which provides enhanced audio output characteristics. 

One of Sound Manager’s capabilities involves designing and controlling 
complex synthesized sounds. With the right application, you can play a 
series of pitches with different durations to create a musical sequence. You 
can change the timbre of the sounds and play them simultaneously on mul- 
tiple channels. You can also speed up or slow down sounds, change their 
volume levels, and pan them to the right or left in real time. 

Multiple Channels 

The ability to produce sampled sound on multiple channels is one of the 
most useful new features in the enhanced version of Sound Manager. In the 
past, Sound Manager could only play a single channel of sampled sound at 
one time. If the software called for a system alert sound while another sam- 
pled soimd was playing, you wouldn’t hear the alert sound. More impor- 
tantly, you couldn’t layer your multimedia soundtracks to produce a more 
professional-sounding mix by combining, for example, narration and music, 
or music and sound effects. 

With the more recent version of Sound Manager, you can have several 
channels of sampled sound output simultaneously to the Mac’s speaker or 

Sound and the System 


audio jack. The number of possible channels and the quality of sound out- 
put depend on the model of Macintosh used and specifically on the internal 
hardware configuration and the processing speed. A Mac Ilex or Ilsi, for 
example, can support several channels without difficulty, while a Mac Plus 
can only support a single channel before having its processing speed 
adversely affected. Furthermore, the current Sound Manager only allows 
you to have multiple channels of sampled sound on models that incorporate 
the Apple Sound Chip. 


Another important feature recently added to Sound Manager is the ability 
to compress and decompress sounds to conserve valuable disk storage space. 
Known as Macintosh Audio Compression and Expansion (MACE), this 
feature provides data compression and expansion capabilities to all models 
of the Macintosh from the Mac Plus on. MACE can perform its services in 
real time with either of two compression ratios: 3:1 and 6:1. Although this 
can save you a considerable amount of disk space, it comes at the cost of 
noticeably lower sound quality. You should therefore reserve the use of 
compression for situations where optimum sound quahty is not essential. 

Recording Sounds 

Since all Macs come with a digital-to-analog converter as standard equip- 
ment, playing back sampled sounds has never been a problem. To record 
your own sounds, however, you’ll also need an analog-to-digital converter. All 
of the recent Macintosh models, such as the LC, the Ilsi, and the Quadra, 
come with a built-in analog-to-digital converter and a small button-shaped 
condenser microphone that plugs into an audio input jack. If you don’t 
have one of the Macs with on-board recording hardware, you can still 
record your own sounds by using an external digitizer like MacRecorder 
or Voice Impact Pro (see Chapter 1 1). 

The enhanced Sound Manager provides a new and improved Soimd con- 
trol panel that lets you record sounds and add them directly to the list of 
alert sounds. With System 7 you just double-click the Sound icon in the 
Control Panels folder. The Sound control panel (Figure 16.1) displays a list 
of available alert sounds and a volume control. When you install a driver 



for a recording device, an icon appears in a separate display below the list of 
alert sounds. If you have one of the newer Macs, you’ll see a button- 
microphone icon labeled Built-in. If you’re using an external digitizer, 
you’ll see an icon for each device driver that is currently installed in the 

To make a recording, you first select your input device and click the Add 
button. This opens a standard record dialog box with a basic set of trans- 
port controls (Figure 16.2). You can monitor your input levels by watching 
the number of simulated sound waves that emanate from the loudspeaker 
icon. If you’re using the built-in microphone, you adjust the volume by 
speaking or playing louder or softer or by repositioning the microphone. 
External digitizers usually have a volume control. 

Figure 16.1 

The Sound control 
panel, with several 
recording device 
drivers installed 

□ Sound 



Alert Sounds 








Simple Beep 


[ Add... ] [ Remoue ] 





Voice Impact 

Figure 16.2 

The standard 
record dialog box 

nsEin oil 

Record Stop Pause Play [ Lancei J 

BggggP— ^ !□ :06 Saue ]) 

0 seconds 10 V -J 

Sound and the System 


A thermometer-style display and a digital readout in the dialog box indicate 
the elapsed time— you can only record for up to 10 seconds. When you’re 
finished, you name the sound and click OK. The Soimd Manager then 
saves the recording as an SND sound resource file and adds it to the list of 
available alert sounds. 

The standard record dialog box is often used from within various kinds of 
applications. When used in this way, the applications often provide the 
opportunity to record for periods of time longer than the 10-second limit. 
They also typically offer the option of recording with a sampling rate lower 
than the Macintosh’s 22-kHz (actually 22.254-kHz) output rate. Addition- 
ally, many programs allow you to take advantage of the Soimd Manager’s 
compression and expansion capabilities to reduce file size. Aside from SND 
sound resources, applications can use the Sound Manager to store sounds 
in Audio IFF and Audio IFF-C file formats. 

I QuickTime 

When Apple introduced QuickDraw and the PICT file format several years 
ago, it ushered in a new era of desktop publishing by enabling Macintosh 
users to paste graphics easily into virtually any text document. With the 
introduction of QuickTime, in January of 1992, Apple has taken another 
quantum leap— this time into the world of multimedia. QuickTime repre- 
sents a major step in the ongoing evolution of the Macintosh system by 
allowing users to integrate time-based data into mainstream applications 
as easily as they now do with still graphics and text. Time-based data, or 
dynamic data as it’s often called, is data that is stored and retrieved as 
values over time, such as video, animation, and sound. 

How It Works 

QuickTime is actually an extension of the Macintosh’s system software that 
lets you store^ exchange, and manipulate this dynamic data in the same 
ways as with other standard elements in the Macintosh environment. It also 
provides a uniform means of connecting applications to a variety of media- 
related hardware, like CD-ROM players, videodisc players, VCRs, and 
audio NuBus cards. 


Figure 16.3 

A QuickTime 
movie typically 
appears in a small 
window with a few 
transport controls 
and a scroll bar. 

The speaker icon 
lets you set the 
volume level. 


The time-based data, drawn from its various sources, is integrated into a single 
file format called a movie. QuickTime movies consist of one or more tracks, 
each containing information that pertains to a specific type of dynamic data. A 
simple movie might have only a video and an audio track, while more complex 
movies (planned for future releases) could have several tracks. 

Although each track handles a particular type of data, it doesn’t actually 
contain the data itself. Instead, it identifies and points to where the data is 
stored and retrieves it for playback at the appropriate time. To accomplish 
this, the track must specify the order in which segments of data are to be 
played, how long each segment will last, what its playback speed will be, 
and other characteristics that relate to the type of media being addressed. 
QuickTime then takes this information and correlates the different time 
scales used by the individual tracks and synchronizes all of the data to 
create the finished movie (Figure 16.3). 

A QuickTime Movie file aas much like a clearinghouse for data that is 
stored in RAM, on hard disks, on CD-ROMs, or elsewhere. As Apple puts 
it, “The movie is not the medium; it is the organizing principle.” This 
modular structure means that the large data files needed for playback can be 
stored separately, in appropriate media, allowing the movie files themselves 
to remain small. This fact, along with QuickTime’s full support by the 
Clipboard and Scrapbook, makes it practical to cut, copy, and paste movies 
between documents the same way you do with still images. 

The QuickTime movie format also specifies two features to help identify 
and organize movies. K poster is a single frame image used as a thumbnail 

Sound and the System 


to identify a movie file visually. A preview is a shon excerpt from a movie, 
typically no more than 3 to 5 seconds long, that provides a glimpse into 
the movie’s contents. 

QuickTime adds three new managers to the Macintosh S 3 rstem. The first of 
these, the Movie Toolbox, provides developers with software routines that 
enable applications to create, store, retrieve, edit, and manipulate Quick- 
Time movies. Using the tools provided with the Movie Toolbox, program- 
mers can add Copy, Paste, Resize, and Play commands to existing 

The Image Compression Manager provides a set of routines that com- 
press and decompress high-resolution color images or sequences of graphic 
images to reduce their storage requirements. QuickTime includes three 
kinds of image compressors; one for photo images, one for video data, and 
another for animation files. Others will be added as future needs arise. 

The third QuickTime manager is called the Component Manager. The 
Component Manager lets programmers define and register the capabilities 
of external resources, such as digitizer cards, VCRs, and system software 
extensions. While a program is running, it can gain access to specific com- 
ponents (software modules) by referring to the Component Manager, which 
acts as an interface between the external resources and the application. This 
makes the hardware transparent to use and allows developers to include 
access to new devices without having to modify their applications. 

QuickTime also adds an important new development for handling graphics. 
The new Movie format extends the PICT file format to handle compressed 
still images. Any program that can now open a standard PICT file can use 
QuickTime to open compressed PICT images. There’s also another PICT 
extension that supports previewing of images with small thumbnail ver- 
sions that you can use for browsing through collections of files. 

Synchronization and Sound 

The problem of synchronizing audio and video has been a gadfly buzzing 
around the heads of multimedia producers for a long time now. The 
trouble comes from two sources. The first problem arises when you create a 



presentation on one model of Macintosh and play it back on a different 
model, or one with a faster or slower hard disk, or a different screen redraw 
rate. If you change the hardware parameters, your presentation will surely 
be played back at a different speed than when it was originally created, and 
the audio that goes with the visuals will almost immediately fall out of sync. 

Second, there is the question of what constitutes real time in a computer 
presentation. In some presentations it’s clear when the playback speed is 
correct because people seem to move in a normal way and the movements 
of physical objeas appear to obey the natural laws of gravity. But what is 
real time for a flying logo, or an animated bar graph, or a horizontal wipe 
transition? And how do you tell if the playback speed has changed and the 
original durations of your video segments are no longer the same? 

QuickTime solves these problems by defining a time coordinate system that 
anchors movies and their tracks to a common reference. Since the tracks in 
a movie derive their timing from the operating system, everything stays 
in sync no matter what computer model you use for playback. When a 
movie contains both audio and video tracks, QuickTime defaults to using 
the sound track as the master timing reference and slaves the video to the 
audio. This ensures that the audio will always be played back correctly 
regardless of the computing environment. If, on a particular computer, the 
video track can’t keep up with the audio playback rate, QuickTime will 
selectively drop occasional video frames to keep the two tracks progressing 
together. The reasoning behind this arrangement comes from the fact that 
when audio playback slows, its pitch drops and it sounds terrible. The 
video, on the other hand, can lose an occasional frame and still work 
reasonably well. 

The sound that QuickTime uses is the same 8-bit digital audio that all 
Macintoshes currently use. Apple plans to add MIDI capabilities in future 
releases through the integration of MIDI Manager (see below) and Quick- 
Time. Opcode Systems has already written a QuickTime driver into 
Max, its real-time, graphic-based MIDI programming environment. 


To use QuickTime you must have a Macintosh with a 68020, 68030, or 
68040 processor, a color display, and a hard disk. Although QuickTime wUl 

Sound and the System 


run in 2MB of RAM, at least 4MB is highly reconunended. In most cases 
you’ll also need a CD-ROM player. Apple reconunends a drive with an 
average seek time of less than 400 milliseconds. 

I MIDI Manager 

If you’ve been using, or exploring the possibility of using, MIDI software 
during the past year or so, you no doubt have encountered Apple’s MIDI 
Manager. Most MIDI programs available today are at least compatible with 
MIDI Manager and many of them require it. Throughout this book, the 
name MIDI Manager pops up in conjunaion with sequencers, universal 
editor/librarians, and other MIDI applications. But many people still don’t 
know what MIDI Manager is and why it exists. 

What It Does 

MIDI Manager allows different MIDI programs and hardware devices to 
coexist peacefully and to communicate with one another without causing 
system conflicts. Although MultiFinder made it possible to run several 
programs at once, it wasn’t much use for MIDI applications until MIDI 
Manager appeared. Before MIDI Manager, if you put your sequencer into 
Play or Record and then tried to switch to a different program or choose a 
desk accessory from the Apple menu, you couldn’t do it. You first had to 
stop the sequencer to open another program. 

This is because MIDI sequencers need to access the built-in high-resolution 
timer that is part of the inner workings of the Macintosh. And sequencers 
also tie up one or both of the serial ports to communicate with your MIDI 
interface. If another program tries to access the timer or the serial ports 
while the sequencer has them busy, a conflia will occur and problems 
will arise. 

To prevent this, MIDI programs in the past were forced to commandeer 
the serial ports and set up the timer for their own needs. If you were run- 
ning two MIDI programs under MultiFinder and you wanted to switch 
between them, the active program would disconnect itself when switched to 
the background and would later have to reconnect when made active again. 



Clearly, this arrangement was not conducive to MIDI multitasking and the 
real-time exchange of data, because only the currently active application 
could send and receive MIDI messages. 

How It Does It 

To resolve this problem, Apple created a single driver that several appli- 
cations could share so that each program wouldn’t have to monopolize the 
hardware with its own driven With the birth of MIDI Manager, multiple 
MIDI programs could send and receive data on the modem and printer 
ports. Furthermore, MIDI Manager allows you to connea the output from 
one program to the input of another through its virtual ports. You can 
have as many as 16 ports (input, output, and timer combined) for each 

MIDI Manager actually consists of three parts: MIDI Manager, the 
Apple MIDI Driver, and PatchBay. The MIDI Manager part is a start-up 
document that goes in the System Folder. The Apple MIDI Driver also 
goes in the System Folder and allows access to the modem and printer ports 
when an application signs in to MIDI Manager. PatchBay is the applica- 
tion that lets you connect MIDI programs graphically with on-screen 
“patch cords” that connea the various MIDI Manager ports (Figure 16.4). 

While most MIDI products are compatible with MIDI Manager, some 
products, like Digidesign’s SampleCell (see Chapter 12), absolutely require 
it. Through MIDI Manager, you can send MIDI messages directly to the 
SampleCell NuBus card without using a MIDI interface or MIDI cables. 

Figure 16.4 

PatchBay lets you 
connect MIDI 
hardware and 
software graphically 
with on-screen 
“patch cords.’* 

Sound and the System 

351 t 

Most of the programs covered in Chapters 5 , 6, and 14 will work with 
MIDI Manager as well. 

How It Affects Performance 

There’s one drawback, however, to using MIDI Manager: It slows down 
your computer. When it’s active, MIDI Manager is very busy handling 
large amounts of data and timing information in an effort to service the 
connected MIDI devices and applications. MIDI Manager gives priority to 
MIDI timing to ensure that recording and playback remain consistent in 
spite of the extra processor load. This results in a sometimes noticeable 
slowing in the speed at which the Macintosh performs certain other tasks. 

If you have a Mac II or faster model, it probably won’t cause much of a 
problem. On the slower models (Plus, SE, Classic), performance speed may 
lag too much to be acceptable. To a great extent, it depends on the pro- 
grams you’re running and the demands you place on them. In any event, 
avoid using versions of MIDI Manager prior to version 2.0. These earlier 
releases were notoriously buggy and problematic. 

One Last Thought 

Perhaps the most amazing thing about MIDI Manager is that it exists 
at all. By creating MIDI Manager, Apple Computer has not only acknowl- 
edged the importance of MIDI music but has supported its inclusion into 
our total computing experience. What a coimtry! 


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I he Macintosh is a terrific computer for multimedia production, but it can’t be 
all things to all people. Each person has to add the necessary hardware that will 
make the system work for him or her. When it comes to sound and music, 
there are many options available for expanding the Macintosh’s capabilities. 

Fve discussed many of these products in detail in the previous chapters. In this 
chapter I’ll explore in greater depth some of the hardware options that I 
touched on briefly in Chapters 2, 3, and 7, 

SI Sound Modules and More 

If you’ve been in almost any large music store lately, you know that the 
world is awash in a sea of sound modules, keyboards, and MIDI devices of 
every type and description. Amazingly enough, most of these products are 
actually quite good. Certainly some instruments sound worse than others, 
but then they generally cost less as well. Some devices may have fewer 
features than others, but then they may be easier to use. 

Overall, most products maintain a good balance between their positive and 
negative qualities and you’ll find avid fans of nearly every MIDI contrap- 
tion ever made. When shopping for MIDI instruments, it’s best to know 
what your particular requirements are and then take into account each 
instrument’s cost, available sounds, and specific features in making a final 

Clearly, it would be impraaical for me to list and describe every sound 
module on the market today. So I’ve chosen several that I consider notewor- 
thy from the standpoint of creating an integrated desktop presentation sys- 
tem. These include a number of components from Roland that are designed 



as computer peripherals, several high-quality sample-playback units from 
E-mu, and a couple of General MIDI-compatible modules from Yamaha 
and Korg. 


Responding to the ever-growing interest in computer-based multimedia, 
Roland Corp. has introduced a line of music peripherals designed specifi- 
cally to interface with desktop computer systems. This is noteworthy 
because it means that one of the world’s largest manufacturers of electronic 
musical instruments has recognized the importance of the growing market 
for multimedia sound production and has committed itself to an extensive 
product line that enables users to create high-fidelity, professional-sounding 
music directly from the desktop. 

Many of the products described below are based on Roland’s highly suc- 
cessful LA s 3 mthesis technology and have existed in previous incarnations 
as some of its most popular general-purpose electronic-music instruments. 
But the components here (with a couple of exceptions) reveal their intended 
use through several unique and telling design characteristics. 

First, they’re all housed in platinum-colored plastic cases that coordinate 
well with the look of the current Macintosh models. Second, the sound 
modules are sized and shaped to fit neatly under a Mac Plus, SE, or Classic 
(much like an external hard drive) to give the appearance of an integrated, 
desktop sound-production system. And finally, the sound modules are 
nearly devoid of front panel controls. Each unit has a power switch, a vol- 
ume control, and nothing else. This design is based on the assumption that 
since these modules are to be part of a computer music system, you’ll 
accomplish all parameter setting operations through yotu software (see 
Chapter 9). Although this design cuts costs and creates a sleek-looking box, 
some users may be somewhat troubled by this lack of direct access. 


To form the core of its computer-music product line, Roland offers a choice 
of several music sound modules that you can interconnect to expand the 



system as needed. One module that makes a good first choice for an inex- 
pensive, basic setup is the CM-32L— a synthesizer module utilizing 
Roland’s proprietary LA (linear/arithmetic) technology. 

Internally similar to the popular MT-32 music module, the CM-32L offers 
improved signal-to-noise ratio and significantly expanded memory, enabling 
it to include numerous additional sound effects that increase its suitability 
for multimedia presentations and postproduction sound. The CM-32L has 
32-voice maximum polyphony and nine-part multitimbral capability con- 
sisting of eight synthesizer parts and one rhythm part. This enables you to 
combine sounds from 128 internal synthesized tones, 30 percussion sounds, 
and 33 sound effects to produce musical arrangements with a fair degree of 
complexity and texture in a good variety of styles. 

Rounding out the list of features, a built-in digital reverb adds a sense of 
realism and spatial placement to the sounds. The CM-32L is currently 
compatible with several popular entertainment software packages that 
incorporate orchestral soundtracks and creative sound effects into their 
adventirre games. 


If you’re seeking to expand your palette of musical sounds, Roland offers a 
sample-playback module— the CM-32E Almost identical to the CM-32L in 
appearance, this module uses resynthesized PCM sampled soimds, stored 
in ROM, as preset tones. It has 31-voice maximum pol 3 TJhony, six-part 
multitimbral capability, and 64 internal preset tones. Since the CM-32P 
represents an improved version of Roland’s earlier U-1 10 PCM sound 
module, it can accept, in its front-panel card slot, the extended library of 
sotmds available on ROM cards for the U-1 10. This expandability, com- 
bined with the on-board digital reverb, makes the CM-32P an ideal module 
to use for adding high-quality, sampled sounds to a musical score. 


The CM-64 looks like a clone of the CM-32P but contains within the same 
housing all of the capabilities of the CM-32P and CM-32L. This unit 
boasts a very impressive 63-voice maximum polyphony (32-1-31) along with 



15-part multitimbral capability, a digital reverb, and a front-panel ROM 
card slot. If you’re looking for a desktop orchestra-in-a-box for your presen- 
tations, this music module is worth considering. 


As the final details of the General MIDI Standard were being hammered 
out, Roland was hard at work preparing for the release of the SC-55 Sound 
Canvas— the first General MIDI-compatible sound module. The SC-55 
(Figure 17.1) incorporates Roland’s GS Standard format, a superset of Gen- 
eral MIDI that follows all of the protocols and sound maps of the General 
MIDI Specification while adding more controllers and sounds. 

Figure 17.1 
The Roland SC-55 
Sound Canvas 

The SC-55 also represents a significant improvement in sound quality, 
synthesis techniques, and editing capabilities over the first-generation 
computer-music modules described above. Roland plans to gradually phase 
out its earlier I. A synthesis modules as the new GS Standard takes hold. 
Many of the producers of sequenced MIDI music mentioned in Chapter 7 
now support General MIDI and a few have sequences specifically arranged 
for the SC-55. These sequences take advantage of the SC-55’s additional 
capabilities, but they should also work fine with other General MIDI sound 

Because there is still a very large installed base of users with MT-32/CM- 
32L-compatible products, Roland wisely included a subset of the SC-55’s 



sounds that re-creates the 128 patches in the MT-32/CM-32L along with 
the corresponding Program Change numbers. This means that games and 
third-party sequences designed to go with the MT-32/CM-32L can still 
work, although the SC-55 won’t recognize system-exclusive messages for 
these earlier instruments. 

Although, technically speaking, the SC-55 is not part of Roland’s 
computer-music peripherals colleaion, its support of General MIDI com- 
bined with its wireless remote control and small, half-rack size make it 
highly appropriate for desktop presentations. 

The SC-55 has a generous 315 sounds along with nine drum sets to cover a 
variety of musical needs. It offers 16-part multitimbral operation with a 
maximum 24-voice polyphony. You can further enhance the soimds with 
the on-board digital reverb and chorus effect. 

The front panel provides an array of buttons that let you assign instru- 
ments, adjust level and pan, apply reverb and chorus, select MIDI chan- 
nels, and more. Settings and other information are clearly shown on a large 
LCD screen that includes a real-time bar-graph display of the output levels 
for each Part. Additionally, two audio-input jacks on the rear panel let you 
mix stereo audio signals from an external source, like a tape deck, mixer, or 
hi-fi, with the SC-55’s internal sounds. 


The SC- 155 Sound Canvas is a tabletop sound module that is largely the 
same as the SC-55 except that it adds some imponant new internal and 
external features. It offers 317 instrument sounds, nine drum sets, and the 
same built-in reverb and chorus effects. It also provides an MT-32 compati- 
bility mode and the same General MIDI and GS Standard characteristics as 
the SC-55. It has 16-part multitimbral capability, 24-voice polyphony, and a 
real-time LCD bar-graph display. 

The big difference between the SC- 155 and the SC-55 is the presence, on 
the SC- 15 5, of nine slider controls (eight Parts plus one master control). By 
using the Part sliders, you can adjust the volume level and pan position of 
up to eight Parts simultaneously. When you play back a sequence, these 
sliders let you control the different instrument sounds as you would with an 



audio mixer. You can assign the sliders to control Parts 1-8 or 9-16, and 
you can store the instrument sound assignments and the corresponding 
level and pan settings in the SC-155’s memory. 

The sliders can also send MIDI data to a sequencer. Using the MIDI Send 
function, you can record level and pan data in real time into your sequencer 
to provide automated mixing capabilities. You can also assign the sliders to 
control other sound parameters, like modulation, vibrato, cutoff frequency, 
resonance, reverb, and chorus. 

The SC-155 has several features that let you create “music-minus-one” 
performances. You can play back any sequence and mute an individual Part 
so you can play it yourself Or you can select a specific Part and listen to it 
alone. The SC-155’s Minus One function makes it easy to include yourself 
in a MIDI performance. You simply connect the sequencer output to MIDI 
In 1 and the keyboard to MIDI In 2. When you selea a Part for muting, 
that Part won’t sound. Instead, the notes that you play will replace it in real 
time without changing the original sequence. The SC- 155 also provides the 
same audio-input jacks for mbdng stereo external sources with the SC-155’s 
on-board sounds. 


The CM-300 (Figure 17.2) represents the second generation of Roland’s 
computer-music sound modules. Internally it is virtually identical to the 
SC-55, but comes housed in the same platinum-colored case that the CM- 
32L uses. It has all of the SC-55’s internal sounds, including the nine drum 
sets and the built-in reverb and chorus effects. It also provides the same 16- 
part multitimbral capability and 24-voice polyphony. With the CM-300, 
you give up the SC-55’s front panel buttons and LCD display in exchange 
for a less expensive, sleek-looking box that matches your other computer 
accessories. The CM-300 is, in essence, the GS Standard/General MIDI 
version of the CM-32L. 

The CM-300 includes 192 sounds that emulate the tone assignments in 
the CM-64, so you can play back sequence data that already exists for the 
MT-32, CM-32L, and CM-64 without modification. The CM-300, how- 
ever, does not respond to system-exclusive messages for these other sound 
modules and may not always provide the same polyphony as the CM-64. 



Figure 17.2 

The Roland 

The CM-300 sports the same audio-input jacks that the other modules 
provide. With these jacks you can connect another sound module to the 
CM-300 and combine the two sound sources without using a mixer. 


For those computer users who want the best of both worlds, Roland offers 
the CM-500— a combination of the CM-32L and the CM-300 in a single 
case. The CM-500 includes 317 GS-compatible sounds and 128 LA- 
synthesis sounds for an impressive 445 available Tones. There are also 64 
user-programmable Tones in the LA section. The LA section has a built-in 
reverb effect, and the GS section offers reverb, digital delay, and chorus. 
With the GS section, you can play with 16-part multitimbral capability and 
24-voice polyphony. In the LA section, you have 8-part multitimbral capa- 
bility and 32-voice polyphony, giving you the ability to play up to 56 notes 
at one time. 

You can configure the CM-500 in four different modes, which allow you to 
play the GS section alone or in combination with the LA section. In CM- 
300 mode, the CM-500 can play any GS-compatible data without modifica- 
tion. In the CM-64 Simulation mode, there are nine channels of LA sounds 
and six channels of simulated PCM sounds. This makes the CM-500 com- 
patible with games and other software that use MT-32 system-exclusive 



With either of these modes, you can play back sequence data created for the 
MT-32, CM-32L, CM-321^ CM-64, and any other GS-compatible sound 
modules. The other modes offer preset or selectable combinations of the 
two sounds. The CM-500 does not provide the audio-input jacks that the 
other modules have; the remaining controls and connections are the same. 


To produce musical sounds from these modules, you’ll first have to connea 
a MIDI input device. This can be any kind of MIDI controller, but the 
most common type is a piano-style keyboard. As I explained in Chapter 3, 
MIDI keyboard controllers look like synthesizers, but do not produce any 
sounds of their own. Instead they transmit MIDI note on/ofF messages to a 
MIDI-equipped sound module or computer. 

As part of its computer music series, Roland offers the PC-200 MIDI Data 
Keyboard. This inexpensive, compact device can be powered by batteries 
or an AC adapter. Although its MIDI implementation is somewhat limited 
and its range (four octaves) is rather small, it may still satisfy the require- 
ments of those who only need an inexpensive, basic MIDI keyboard. 

The PC-200— unlike its predecessor, the PC- 100— sends MIDI velocity 
data, which allows you to add dynamic expression to your music. You can 
also send program changes on all 16 MIDI channels with its MIDI/Select 
button. The PC-200 provides a data-entry slider that you can use to adjust 
volume, stereo panning, and velocity range. The bender/modulation lever 
lets you send continuous controller messages to add such things as pitch 
bend and vibrato to your performances. 

Experienced players and those with more demanding requirements would 
do well to consider some of the professional-level controllers that are cur- 
rently on the market. These keyboards, offered by Roland, Yamaha, Kawai, 
and others, provide (at much greater cost) extensive MIDI implementation, 
better keyboard feel, and a wider range. 


By now you may be thinking, “I want one of those sound modules, but I 
only had two years of piano lessons as a kid and I don’t have a clue about 



how to write a musical arrangement.” Fortunately for you and the many 
other amateur musicians in the world, Roland has created the CA-30 
“Intelligent Arranger.” This unassuming, membrane-paneled rectangle is 
actually a sophisticated music-generating device. 

Styled to match the other components in the Roland computer music 
series, it sits perfectly on top of the sound modules and creates, from the 
simplest input, a full-fledged musical arrangement. A MIDI keyboard plugs 
into the CA-30, which in turn plugs into a sound module (either the CM- 
32L or the CM-64). After that, you simply play chords in the appropriate 
zone of the keyboard so that the unit knows what harmonies you want. If 
your keyboard skills are not up to par, a “chord intelligence” function 
enables you to play one- and two-note reductions of chords, which the 
“arranger” transforms into full harmonies. 

The CA-30 automatically accesses the appropriate instruments from the 
sound module and produces a surprisingly musical combination of sounds, 
rhythms, and textures. There are 32 musical styles built into the unit 
(including rock, reggae. Dixieland, country, polka, samba, and fusion, to 
name a few), and you can expand this list via the ROM-card slot on the rear 
panel and Roland’s “Style Card Library.” 

Each arrangement consists of a drum part, a bass part, and two or three 
accompanying instrumental parts, which all vary according to the style 
selected. Each style has an original version and a variation, as well as a basic 
and advanced arrangement. All of this, combined with breaks, fills, intros, 
and endings, provides enough raw material to create accompaniments that 
sound both interesting and musical. Of course you won’t be putting Henry 
Mancini or Quincy Jones to shame, but you can assemble, quickly and 
easily, a good generic background accompaniment to play against a soloist 
or under narration. 

By entering your chord changes and melody line into a sequencer, which 
then transmits the data to the CA-30, your arrangement can be triggered by 
the appropriate presentation software (see Chapter 1 5). More advanced 
MIDI users may be frustrated by this unit’s need to do things its own way, 
but fortunately you can send the MIDI output of the CA-30 to a sequencer, 
where you can perform more complex editing operations on its musical 



The primary drawback of this product is its infeaious nature. More addic- 
tive than opium, you’ll find this little box so entertaining that once you 
start using it, your family may begin to wonder why they don’t see you so 
much anymore. 

Although the CA-30 is designed to go with the LA synthesis sound mod- 
ules, it can also work with any of the GS-compatible modules. It won’t, 
however, take advantage of the improvements and new features that are 
unique to these instruments. According to Roland, it’s likely that the CA- 
30 will someday be replaced by another unit that is designed to go with the 
GS Standard instruments. 

E-mu Systems 

When E-mu first released its Proteus sound module a few years ago, it was 
an overnight success. Store owners couldn’t keep them in stock and every- 
one was talking about this new MIDI instrument. The reason for all this 
attention was that the Proteus offered, at a reasonable price, a 16-bit, rack- 
mountable, stereo, sample-playback module with excellent sound quality 
and a long list of features. 

The Proteus has since grown into three different models, each with one 
or more variations. All of the Proteus sound modules get their samples 
from the famous Emulator III sound library and store the sounds in ROM 
for instant access. Although these modules are not designed specifically 
for multimedia, their compact size, high fidelity, and flexibility make 
them ideally suited to many kinds of desktop presentations and music 


The Proteus/ 1 provides 192 performance patches, which it calls 
The presets are constructed from its list of internal sounds called instru- 
ments, which are stored in 4 megabytes of ROM (expandable to 8 mega- 
bytes). The instruments are built from 125 waveforms in various types 
consisting of sampled sounds and several smaller waveforms, including 
single-cycle waveforms (sampled and synthesized), multicycle waveforms, 
and harmonic waveforms. 



A preset corresponds to one MIDI channel and can consist of either one or 
two instruments, each with its own key range, tuning, volume, pan posi- 
tion, chorusing, and modulation. If you have two instruments in a preset, 
you can crossfade or switch between them using key ranges, velocity, or 
foot-switch triggers. Presets respond to pitch bend, aftertouch, and up to 
four user-selected MIDI controllers. Additionally, you can combine, or 
“link,” up to four presets to create even more complex sotmds. The 
Proteus/ 1 allows you to choose one of six tuning scales for each preset. 
Aside from the standard equal-tempered scale, there are fom alternate scales 
available internally and one user-defined scale. From the total number of 
available presets, 64 are user-programmable, allowing you to create new 
sounds by combining different waveforms to produce new instruments. 

The Proteus/ 1 has 16-part multitimbral capability and a maximum 32-voice 
polyphony. On its back panel there are three pairs of audio outputs, labeled 
Main, Subl, and Sub2. You can configure these to provide three separate 
stereo outputs (or six mono outputs), and you can also use the Sub jacks as 
sends and returns for external effects devices. 

The front panel of the Proteus is simple and clear in its design. Selecting 
presets and changing most parameters is straightforward and logical. The 
16-bit, 39-kHz sampled sounds are very clean and for the most part quite 
realistic. In the Proteus/ 1, they are primarily oriented toward rock, pop, 
and other commercial styles of music. There is a good assortment of acous- 
tic and electric keyboards, synthesizers, basses, and guitars, along with 
some brass, a few woodwinds, strings, and choirs, and many drum and 
percussion sounds. 

The Proteus/ 1 also comes in a Proteus/ 1 XR version, which provides room 
for 256 user presets but is otherwise the same. Digidesign is currently mar- 
keting a Proteus/ 1 on a NuBus card, called MacProteus. It will work with 
any Mac II and a sequencer that supports Apple’s MIDI Manager (see 
Chapter 16). The MacProteus card provides only one set of stereo outputs 
and it can’t have its ROM expanded. 


The Proteus/2 is virtually identical in appearance to the Proteus/ 1. Inter- 
nally, the two are also very similar. They use the same strucmres involving 



instruments and presets and provide the same editing, modifying, and 
performance setup capabilities. The internal samples and most of the addi- 
tional waveforms, of course, are different in the Proteus/2, which requires 8 
megabytes of ROM to store its soimds. This is an orchestrally oriented 
sound module that nicely complements the Proteus/1. There is little over- 
lap between the two, and the Proteus/2 supplies many of the sounds miss- 
ing in the Proteus/ 1 that are important to composers working in the field of 
film and video scoring. 

The Proteus/2’s list of sounds includes a good assortment of stringed 
instruments— both plucked and bowed— in solo and various ensemble com- 
binations. There is also a collection of orchestral brass— both solo and 
ensemble— and an excellent assortment of very fine woodwind sounds. The 
percussion sounds are primarily symphonic in nature, but the keyboard 
sounds lean heavily toward synthesized timbres and elearonic organ 
soimds. Additionally, there are a few basses and a number of atmospheric 
sound effects. The Proteus/2 also comes in a Proteus/2 XR version, which 
adds more user-preset locations. 


The Proteus/3 is the newest member of the Proteus family. It uses the same 
16-bit stereo technology to store its sounds in 4 megabytes of ROM. As 
with the other units, it provides 32-voice pol 3 qjhony, 16-channel multitim- 
bral capability, and sue audio outputs. The Proteus/3 is filled with interest- 
ing and unique sounds from around the world. In its collection you’ll find 
such unusual sounds as Aboriginal Digeridoo, Arabian Mizmar, French 
Troubadour Harp, and African Udo Drum. Other instruments from the 
British Isles, India, Cuba, Japan, South America, the Middle East, Africa, 
and Europe contribute to an assortment of sampled sounds that is exciting 
in its musical potential. You can use the Proteus/3 to create ethnic composi- 
tions or combine the instruments to form new timbres for sound effects and 
soundtracks. The Proteus/3 also comes in an XR version. 


Yamaha markets an extensive line of electronic musical instruments and 
accessories, including MIDI controllers, effects processors, synthesizers, 
and sound modules too numerous to mention. One of its newest sound 



modules, however, should be of particular interest to desktop multimedia 
producers. The TGIOO (Figure 17.3) is Yamaha’s first General MIDI- 
compatible sound module. This low-cost sample-playback unit comes with 
200 sounds stored in ROM— 192 instrument voices and eight drum kits. 
There are also 64 user-programmable voices in RAM. The TGIOO 
provides 16-part multitimbral capability, a maximum 28-note polyphony, 
and an on-board reverb effect. 

Figure 17.3 

The Yamaha 

As with the Roland sound modules, the TGIOO provides a stereo audio- 
input connection so you can mix the output from an external sound source 
with the TGlOO’s sounds. The Yamaha instrument, however, carries the 
audio-input implementation one step further by also including an input 
level control and an LED to serve as a signal-level peak indicator. The front 
panel also includes several buttons for accessing editing parameters and 
playback settings, a large voltime control, and a small, one-line LCD dis- 

Of particular note, the TGIOO provides a dedicated To Host connection on 
its back panel, which lets you connect the module direaly to your com- 
puter without the need for a MIDI interface. In fact, with the TGIOO con- 
figured in this way, it can act as a MIDI interface itself, allowing you to 
attach other MIDI instruments to it. In addition to this connection, the 
TGIOO also has the usual MIDI In, Out, and Thru ports, so you can use it 
with a standard MIDI interface in the more typical way. If you’re looking 



for an inexpensive General MIDI sound module with front panel controls 
and several unique features, the TGIOO is worth considering. 


Like Roland and Yamaha, Korg also produces a long line of highly 
regarded s)mthesizers, sound modules, effects processors, and MIDI acces- 
sories. With the introduction of its 03R/W Synthesis Module (Figure 
17.4), Korg has embraced the General MIDI Standard with a one-rack- 
space sound module that has a great deal to offer. 

Figure 17.4 

The Korg 03R/W 
S 5 mthesis Module 

The 03R/W borrows many features from Korg’s powerful 01 /W synthe- 
sizer, including the Advanced Integrated Synthesis System, which uses 
PCM sampled sounds for its source material. The 03R/W’s tone generator 
comes with 255 multisampled instrument sounds and 1 14 drum sounds. 
These are used as the starting point of a multistage synthesis process that 
includes oscillators and variable digital filters and amplifiers. 

To further enhance its sounds, the 03R/W provides a dual-system multief- 
fects processor that lets you choose from 47 different effeas, including 
reverb, digital delay, chorusing, flanging, and myriad other options and 
variations. If you want to expand your available palette of soimds, the 03R/ 
W can use PCM cards from the 01/W Series sound library, which plug into 
a slot in the 03R/W’s front panel. 



The 03R/W provides 16-part multitimbral capability and a maximum 32- 
voice polyphony. In addition to its internal RAM area, which can store up 
to 100 programs and 100 combinations, the 03R/W includes a ROM area 
with 128 General MIDI instrument sounds and a drum set configured to 
meet the General MIDI Standard. The front panel includes two card slots 
(PCM Data and Program Data), several buttons and LED indicators, and a 
two-line LCD display. The back panel provides four audio-output jacks and 
a controller jack for the optional REl remote editor unit. 

I MIDI Interfaces 

As I discussed in Chapter 3, you’ll need to get a MIDI interface if you 
want to connea MIDI instruments to your Macintosh. Unlike some com- 
puters, the Mac has no built-in MIDI ports, so the MIDI interface attaches 
to the Mac’s rear panel and provides the missing MIDI In and Out connec- 

MIDI transfers data serially, which means that its data bits are sent and 
received one at a time. MIDI interfaces incorporate a chip called a UART 
(universal asynchronous receiver/transmitter) that can read the incoming 
serial data and send it out. Because the Macintosh modem and printer con- 
nections are serial ports, the MIDI interface has the simple job of reading 
the data, converting it into a form that the Macintosh can handle, and send- 
ing it on its way. 

The only problem that exists in getting a Mac to speak MIDI lies in the 
disparity between the Mac’s data transfer rate and MIDI’s. The Mac’s 
serial ports are controlled by the computer’s internal clock, which operates 
at speeds quite different from that of MIDI. To bring the ports into line 
with MIDI’s transfer rate, therefore, the MIDI interface must include an 
external clock to control the speed of the Macintosh’s serial ports. 

None of this, however, is terribly important to the typical MIDI musician, 
who only wants to plug in an instrument and make music. In fact, using a 
MIDI interface is, for the most part, extremely simple and entirely trans- 
parent to the end user. The only real questions arise when it’s time to pur- 
chase an interface for a desktop studio. Then you’ll have to decide how 



many inputs and outputs youTe likely to need in the future, how much 
money you want to spend, and whether you want the additional features 
(like SMPTE timecode support) and associated complexity of a high-end, 
pro-level unit. Here are some examples of the currently available choices 
for MIDI interfaces. 


The simplest MIDI interface that you can have is a plain box with an input 
and output for MIDI and a serial connection for the Macintosh. This is 
exactly what Apple Computer offers with its Apple MIDI Interface. This 
1-In, 1-Out device comes in a small plastic box about the size of a cigarette 
pack and requires no external power supply. You just plug it into either the 
modem or the printer port and attach your MIDI instruments. 

Many people may find this back-to-basics design a bit limiting for their 
tastes. By adding more outputs to an interface, you can connect several 
MIDI devices directly to the MIDI interface, thereby eliminating the need 
to daisy-chain your sound modules. Several companies, recognizing this 
advantage, offer MIDI interfaces that are still very simple but provide addi- 
tional outputs. 

Opcode’s MIDI Translator is typical of these. It provides one MIDI In 
and three MIDI Outs from a small gray plastic box that requires no exter- 
nal power. Altech Systems offers two similar interfaces. Its MIDIFace LX, 
a 1-In, 3-Out unit, comes in a metal box with an LED to indicate MIDI 
activity. It also offers a more expensive version, the MIDIFace EX, that 
adds LEDs and a serial Thru switch so that you can use your serial port 
without disconneaing the interface. Passport’s MIDI Interface for the 
Mac is another inexpensive 1-In, 3-Out unit, in a plastic case with flashing 
LEDs to indicate the presence of MIDI activity. JLCooper Electronics 
offers yet another variation on the same theme with its MacNexus inter- 
face, a 1-In, 3-Out device. 


All of the interfaces described above allow you to send and receive data on 
MIDI’s 16 available channels. Since the Macintosh has two serial ports, 


369 [ 

you could, if you wanted to, attach an interface to each port and double the 
number of available MIDI channels. A much better solution, however, is to 
buy one of the midlevel interfaces that attach to both the printer and 
modem ports and provide 32 MIDI channels in a single imit with several 
additional benefits. 

The most common configuration is represented by Opcode’s popular Stu- 
dio Plus Two. It connects to both Macintosh ports simultaneously and 
provides two MIDI Ins and six MIDI Outs. With its front-panel switch, 
you can assign three outputs to each input or have all six outputs connected 
to a single port. 

Because the MIDI interface ties up both the modem and printer ports, the 
Studio Plus Two provides connections for these peripherals on its rear 
panel, with bypass switches on the front to disengage the MIDI interface 
when it’s not in use. The front panel also includes LED activity indicators 
that show the presence of MIDI data at the input and output connections 
for each serial port. The entire unit is housed in a metal case that can sit 
under a Mac Plus, SE, or Classic like an external hard drive. 


If you’re planning to work with film or video, you should consider one of 
the professional-level MIDI interfaces. These not only provide inputs to 
and outputs from both serial ports but they also include hardware that lets 
your computer read and write SMPTE timecode (see Chapter 18). 
JLCooper offers a relatively inexpensive pro-level interface called Sync/ 
Link that comes in a compact, half-space rack-mountable case with LED 
indicators. It provides a MIDI In and a MIDI Out for each serial port and 
suppons all SMPTE formats through its Sync/Link software. 

With Opcode’s Studio 3, you get two independent MIDI Ins and six 
MIDI Outs, which are assignable in any combination. To use the Studio 3, 
you first install the Studio 3 Desk Accessory. This lets you set up your out- 
puts in any combination, such as 3 + 3, 4 +2, 5 + 1, etc. The desk accessory 
also lets you choose the SMPTE format that the interface will read, and it 
lets you output timecode to record on tape when necessary. The Studio 3 
comes in a single-space rack-mount case with an AC power cord and two 



12-foot serial cables. The front panel provides numerous LEDs to show 
MIDI activity and includes bypass switches for the printer and modem 

Better Than Best 

Although most multimedia artists will never need a MIDI interface with 
more features than those mentioned above, there may be a few of you who 
like living at the very top of the high end. The top-of-the-line, pro-level 
interfaces offer an even greater number of inputs and outputs, fiill SMPTE 
support, MIDI patchbay/merging capabilities, and additional feamres to 
satisfy the needs of those with elaborate MIDI systems. 

The first of these extended pro-level interfaces is from Mark of the Uni- 
corn. Its MIDI Time Piece provides eight independent MIDI inputs and 
outputs in a single-space rack-mount unit. By treating its conneaions as 
separate “cables,” it lets you assign them any of the 16 MIDI channels, 
which in turn provides you with control of up to 128 discrete channels. For 
a really enormous system, you can network up to four of these boxes for a 
grand total of 512 MIDI channels! 

Because you can route any of the eight MIDI Ins to any of the eight MIDI 
Outs, the MIDI Time Piece can serve as a versatile MIDI patchbay that 
provides the opportunity to merge, mute, or rechannelize any MIDI data. 

It also reads and writes all formats of SMPTE timecode and comes with a 
desk accessory that lets you route MIDI channels and set up synchroniza- 
tion parameters. 

The Studio 5, Opcode’s top-of-the-line MIDI interface, offers an impres- 
sive 15 MIDI Ins and Outs for an amazing 240-channel capability. It too 
combines the functions of a MIDI interface, MIDI patchbay, MIDI pro- 
cessor, and SMPTE S 5 mchronizer into a (somewhat larger) rack-mount imit. 
Its front panel supplies LEDs for MIDI activity as well as a digital display 
for showing the program number of the current setup. The Studio 5 comes 
with OMS (Opcode MIDI System) software, which allows you to configure 
your system in a number of ways using its icon-based graphic displays. 



I Speakers 

The speaker that comes with your Macintosh works fine for system beeps, 
alert messages, and voice-mail annotation. But when it comes to multime- 
dia, using only the built-in speaker for your soundtrack can make your 
presentation seem smaller and less substantial. Many producers spend so 
much time and energy creating dazzling graphics and visual effects that 
they forget how much poor sound quality can undermine the impact of a 
presentation. Now that Macintosh multimedia can include not only 8-bit 
digital audio but also 16-bit audio and direct output from MIDI instru- 
ments, it pays to upgrade your desktop speaker system. 

If you typically present your programs in large auditoriums or lecture halls 
you’ll need a serious amplifier and a powerful loudspeaker system. But 
most presentations are aimed at individuals or relatively small groups in 
conference rooms, classrooms, and retail outlets, and at trade shows. For 
these situations there are several kinds of compact speaker systems that are 
designed specifically to sit on the desktop next to your Macintosh and pro- 
vide it with greater volume and noticeably better sound quality. 

The speakers mentioned in this chapter have several traits in common that 
make them suitable for use with desktop computer systems. For starters, 
they all have magnetic shielding, which prevents stray magnetism from 
distorting the images or colors on your monitor if the speakers are placed 
close by. Second, they all have built-in amplifiers that boost the volume 
level of the Macintosh’s audio output without the need for additional hard- 
ware that clutters the workspace. And third, they are all compact, easily 
mountable, and easy to carry from one location to another. 

Roland CS-10 

As part of its Desktop Music System, Roland offers two compaa speaker 
systems that blend well with its other components. The CS-10 (Figure 
17.5) is a stereo speaker system in a single unit that fits neatly under a com- 
pact Macintosh or one of the sound modules described above. On each side 
of its front panel, there are small forward-facing speakers that handle high- 
and midrange frequencies, while a single downward-firing woofer projects 
low frequencies from beneath the case. 



Between the right and left speakers, there are volume and tone controls and 
a headphone jack that takes a V 4 -inch stereo plug. The back panel provides 
two sets of stereo inputs to accommodate the computer output or any sound 
modules, tape decks, or other devices. 

The CS-10 is compact and simple in design, but it’s also limited in many 
ways. The 5-watt amplifier does not offer enough volume to make it suit- 
able for group listening. The fixed positions of the speakers and the lack of 
a balance control make it hard to establish the correct sense of stereo soimd 
placement. Nonetheless, the CS-10 does improve the Macintosh’s sound by 
allowing stereo playback, and it offers an easy way to hook up a MIDI 
sound module for small-room listening. 

Roland MA-12C 

Roland’s MA-12C speaker system (Figure 17.6) costs a little more than the 
CS-10 but provides much better sound quality and greater power from its 
10-watt amplifier. It comes as two independent 4-inch speakers housed in 
high-quality, compaa cases. Each speaker has a high-boost and low-boost 
EQ control and a volume control on the front panel. 

The rear panel provides three separate inputs: microphone, instrument, 
and line-level. You can use any combination of these inputs to mbc sounds 
simultaneously through the amplifier. The MA-12C is more suitable for 



Figure 17.6 

The Roland MA- 

musical applications than the CS-10 because of its greater carrying power, 
flexibility in speaker placement, and higher-fidelity audio output. 


MacSpeaker, from Monster Design Group, is similar in some ways to 
Roland’s MA-12C. It also incorporates a 10-watt power amplifier into each 
compact speaker housing. But MacSpeaker (Figure 17.7) offers several 
unique features that make it worth looking into. Its two-way ‘‘high- 
resolution” speaker design provides a respectable 75 Hz- 18 kHz frequency 
response, and its lightweight enclosures make it possible to mount the 
speakers directly to the sides of your monitor for proper close-range place- 
ment with zero footprint. 

The side of one speaker provides controls for adjusting volume and bass, 
and a small jack on the back panel lets you bypass the external speaker so 
you can listen on headphones. MacSpeaker also includes a unique Sonic 
Imaging Control, which provides a stereo image even if the audio signal 
coming from your Macintosh is monaural. A control on the side of the 
speaker lets you adjust the amount of stereo separation from close-in for one 



Figure 17.7 

MacSpeaker from 
Monster Design 

or two people to a wide-field effect that can work reasonably well for small 
groups. For extended bass response, Monster Design Group also offers an 
optional subwoofer system that allows you to reproduce frequencies down 
to 40 Hz. 

Powered Partner 570 

The Powered Partner 570 (Figure 17.8) represents a significant step up in 
both sound quality and power over the speaker systems described above. 
Alanufactured by Acousdc Research, it retails for more than twice as much as 
MacSpeaker or Roland’s MA-12C. Acoustic Research has long enjoyed a repu- 
tation for producing excellent-sounding high-quality speaker systems, and the 
Powered Partner carries on the tradition. 



Figure 17.8 

The Powered 
Partner 570 from 
Acoustic Research 

It consists of a two-way acoustic suspension system that provides high-fidelity 
sovmd from its compact, wedge-shaped, aluminum-alloy enclosures. With a 35- 
watt power amplifier in each speaker, it is substantially more powerful than the 
other speaker systems in this chapter. This makes it especially appropriate for 
small- to moderate-sized groups and explains its popularity for trade show 
demonstrations and exhibits. 

The Powered Partner can operate on either AC or DC electricity, and there are 
a number of adapters and optional accessories available. Each cabinet includes 
a single RCA-type input jack and a volume, treble, and bass control. By 
mounting the wedge-shaped speakers in a comer, you can fiuther enhance their 
bass response. 


.sfattn vocc 

Adding Sound after 
Transfer to Video 


1— very producer of multimedia must decide at some point what the final format 
will be for his or her presentation. One very popular approach to creating a 
finished product is to use the Macintosh to develop the animation, graphics, 
titles, text, charts, slides, and other visual elements and then transfer the whole 
shebang onto videotape. This is especially good for product demonstrations, 
even products that run on the Mac itself. That’s why companies like Apple, 
Miaosoft, Adobe, and Digidesign have distributed videotape demos to show- 
case their produas. 

■I Video Pros and Cons 

The advantages of videotape as a final format are clear. For one thing, it’s a 
far more universal format than computer-based media. In recent years, 
VCRs have become as ubiquitous as the common household telephone. In 
fact, even outside the home, in places like trade shows, schools, and retail 
outlets, you’re more likely to find a VCR than a functional computer. Once 
you capture your presentation on tape, you can display it on a much larger 
color monitor than most Macintoshes offer. And by assembling a presenta- 
tion in sections, you can create a program that is considerably longer than 
most computers can hold in memory. 

Of course, there are disadvantages. Videotape cassettes are more difficult 
and expensive to reproduce, package, and ship than floppy disks. And, 
most important, one very significant aspect of multimedia is tmavailable 



from videotape: interactivity. Video presentations don’t allow a user to 
interact with a program, such as a training video for instance, the way the 
Macintosh does. With many animation and presentation applications offer- 
ing more features designed to exploit the potential for interaaive multime- 
dia, you may not be willing to sacrifice this aspect. 

Nevertheless, if you decide to work with videotape, you’ll gain some addi- 
tional benefits with regard to sound. Using a VCR instead of a computer to 
play back a presentation eliminates the audio-visual S5mchronization prob- 
lems that often plague computer-based programs. Since all VCRs play back 
at the same number of frames per second, you can rest assured that your 
animation will progress at the proper speed and the audio track will stay in 
sync no matter what machine it’s played on. Additionally, you can draw 
from a variety of sources for sound effects, music, and dialog, and the final 
audio quality will be better than the internal 8-bit audio that comes from 
the Mac. 

After you transfer your presentation to videotape, you use the same basic 
process for building the soimdtrack that is used in postproduction for televi- 
sion, movies, and commercial videos. I’ll begin by focusing on music— 
where to get it and how it’s synchronized to the visuals. 

SI Production Music Libraries 

The quickest and easiest way to provide music for a video presentation is to 
use one of the many production music libraries. These collections of compact 
discs contain a wide variety of musical styles designed specifically as back- 
ground, main-title, and theme music (see Chapter 19). Although the com- 
positional quality may vary from piece to piece and company to company, 
the recording and overall sound quality are generally very high. 

Libraries are usually arranged according to musical styles. Within each 
style there are frequently a variety of formats, such as 30-second and 60- 
second pieces for commercials, short ‘‘stings” for logos and introductions, 
and longer selections of 2 to 4 minutes. Because these libraries are designed 
for production use, you don’t have to worry about copyright hassles once 
you’ve paid the appropriate usage fee. This makes them easy and conven- 
ient to use for a wide range of situations. 

Adding Sound after Transfer to Video 


The big advantage of prerecorded music is, of course, that it’s prerecorded, 
and this gives you the opportunity to hear several pieces and reflect on the 
suitability of each before committing to one for your project. The big disad- 
vantage of prerecorded music is, of course, that it’s prerecorded and will, 
therefore, never perfectly fit your presentation if you’re adding the music 
after the visuals are completed. This lack of what I call “aesthetic reso- 
nance” often gives a video soundtrack that “canned music” quality, and, in 
the extreme, this can ruin an otherwise fine presentation. 

Almost any piece of prerecorded music will occasionally line up with events 
on screen, just as a broken clock will occasionally show the right time. But 
if you find that the visuals and the music are strolling along their separate 
ways and acting as if they don’t know each other, it’s time to put more 
effort into making your musical seleaions or, perhaps, consider the next 
option: original music. 

I Original Music 

In the hands of a good composer, original music can match your visuals 
precisely. A well-constructed musical score can support, enhance and even 
create a sense of architectural form in your presentation. This alone can 
significantly improve audience involvement by carrying viewers from sec- 
tion to seaion as the program unfolds. Specific events on screen can be 
emphasized musically within the fabric of the ongoing score and thereby 
highlight key points in the presentation. Want a cymbal crash and brass 
fanfare every time your company logo appears on screen? No problem! 
Want a timpani roll and orchestral flourish for each new product an- 
nounced? No problem! The tight bonding of music to visuals grabs the 
viewer’s attention and creates a more absorbing and professional 

Lack of time and money are the two most common concerns about working 
with a composer. Certainly, you should allow a little extra time, and per- 
haps some additional money, to have custom music written for your presen- 
tation. But you may be surprised to find that the time and money issues are 
not the problems that they were just a decade ago. Recent developments in 
the areas of electronic music equipment and computer-integrated postpro- 
duction systems have created a proliferation of small music studios, often 



called project studios, that can ofFer a reasonably priced, high-quality alterna- 
tive to prerecorded music. To make effective use of this new technology, 
you’ll need a general understanding of how a small studio operates and 
what is expected of you as the producer of a video presentation. 

Project studios use many of the products that I’ve described in earlier chap- 
ters of this book. In a Mac-based studio, you’ll typically find an assortment 
of MIDI synthesizers, sound modules, effects processors, and other music 
accessories. There will be a video recorder that uses either V 2 -inch tape 
(VHS) or %-inch tape and a television set or video monitor for playback. 
The computer in this t 3 qDe of audio-for-video studio always runs one of the 
high-end sequencer programs (see Chapter 5) because they provide an 
essential feature for working with video; the ability to read SMPTE time- 

al SMPTE Timecode 

SMPTE (pronounced “simpty’’) stands for the Society of Motion Picture 
and Television Engineers, which adapted the timecode standard (from one 
originated at NASA) in 1969. Unlike film, where each frame is clearly visi- 
ble, videotape doesn’t allow you to see its individual frames directly. But 
video consists of frames just as film does, and just as film identifies each 
frame with an edge number, video uses a time-based code to identify each of 
its frames. The system that SMPTE uses for marking video locations con- 
sists of an eight-digit number based on a 60-minute clock. The timecode 
locations appear as four sets of two numbers representing hours, minutes, 
seconds, and frames. An individual frame indicated by a SMPTE number 
might appear as 06:37:14:25. 

Actually there are two kinds of SMPTE code currently in use: longitudinal 
time code (LTC) and vertical interval time code (VITC, pronounced “vitzy”). 
Longitudinal timecode uses an audio tone to carry its stream of data, which 
you record onto an audiotape or onto one of the audio tracks of a videotape. 
When you play back your video, the channel with the timecode signal gets 
routed to the audio-in jack of your MIDI interface. All pro-level interfaces 
(see Chapter 17) can read and write SMPTE code and provide an audio 
input jack for this purpose. The MIDI interface then translates the code 

Adding Sound after Transfer to Video 


into a form that the computer can handle and the sequencer program can 
follow (Figure 18.1). By setting the sequencer to S 3 mc to an external source, 
the sequencer can “lock to picture,” allowing the composer to work directly 
with the video. 

Figure 18.1 

Master Tracks Pro 
5*s enlarged time- 
code display lets 
you read the 
SMPTE numbers 
from across the 

Vertical interval timecode is integrated into the video signal and recorded 
onto an unused ponion of the videotape. This frees up an audio track and 
allows you to know exact frame numbers even when the tape is paused. But 
VITC reading and writing devices are considerably more expensive and less 
common than LTC devices. In either case, the timecode itself is the same. 

Unfortunately, SMPTE code comes in several frame rates just to keep 
things confusing. Originally, video timecode was based on a rate of 30 fps 
(frames per second). But when the video standard changed from black-and- 
white to color, the 30-fps rate had to be adjusted slightly to 29.97 fps. 

Today most audio-only applications and black-and-white video use 30 fps, 
while all broadcast and cable television and all color video produaions use 
29.97 fps. There are also several other frame rates and variations, but fortu- 
nately all of the pro-level MIDI interfaces and sequencer programs recog- 
nize the major types. 

If you just record timecode onto a videotape, there’s no guarantee that the 
timecode numbers will align perfealy with the actual video frames. To sync 
the code direaly to the frames, you’ll have to use a process called genlock- 
ing. Your video editing facility can do this for you. They can also create a 



work print for you that shows the timecode on screen in a reaangular win- 
dow. This is called a window dub, and it allows you to see the SMPTE 
numbers fly by as you view the tape. 

Before you finish your Macintosh presentation, it’s a good idea to add some 
temporary sound effects and dialogue to use as a reference for the com- 
poser. You can mix these down to mono and record them onto one of the 
audio tracks when you transfer your work to video. The composer can use 
this temporary track as a guide to where the dialogue and sound effects are 
placed, and he or she can then write the music around them to avoid 

At this stage in the process, you should have a window-dub work print with 
temporary sound effects and dialogue on one audio channel and SMPTE 
timecode on the other. Be sure to find out what videotape format your com- 
poser prefers for the work print. In the past, %-inch tape was alwa}^ the 
norm, but these days, as VHS tape decks become more sophisticated and 
acquire more editing features, many small studios are forgoing the expense 
of %-inch equipment and turning to ‘/ 2 -inch instead. 

Working with a Composer 

Once you have your work print in hand and you’ve arranged a schedule 
with the composer, it’s time for the spotting session. This is where you and 
the composer sit down together to view the video and discuss’ the kind of 
music that you have in mind. The window dub enables you to point out 
exact start and stop times for segments, called cuesy as well as points of 
interest to emphasize musically. The composer’s notes, with their timing 
references, form the cue sheets which the composer uses as a guide when he 
is back in the studio. 

Next the composer takes the work print and generates matching timecode, 
which he records onto one of the tracks of his audiotape. This is called 
striping the tape with timecode. It’s important for the composer to ask the 
video editing facihty what track format, tape size, and speed they prefer for 
the final music mix. Is this to be mixed down to a mono or stereo record- 
ing? Can they use V4-inch or Va-inch audiotape for the final master? What 

Adding Sound after Transfer to Video 


tape speed do they prefer: 7 V 2 , 15, or 30 ips (inches per second)? Which 
track should the timecode be on? These questions can be cleared up imme- 
diately with a single phone call by the composer to the video editor or 
recording engineer. 

When the music is finished, the audio master tape with its matching time- 
code is locked to the video master tape by using a device called a synchro- 
nizer. The recording engineer then adds the music to the final video in the 
layback process. 

MIDI studios can create scores that sotmd traditional and orchestral or 
modern and electronic, but it’s important to find a composer who fits your 
particular needs. Request a demo tape or ask for references. A good com- 
poser, once found, is a valuable resource for future projects and can provide 
useful input for improving your presentations. 

I Other Sounds 

To add sound effects to a video presentation, you follow a procedure very 
similar to the one described above. Instead of a composer, you meet with a 
sound-effects editor or a sound designer in a separate spotting session. For 
low-budget productions, you might find a composer who can also provide 
you with sound effects since much of the equipment in an audio-for-video 
project studio can serve dual purposes. To add narration, you’ll need a 
voice-over artist, a script with timing guidelines, and a recording studio. 

For productions with all three sotmd elements, the different master record- 
ings are transferred to a multitrack tape deck, where they can then be 
mixed and adjusted during the layback process. Even with low-budget pro- 
duaions, the final results should sound clean and professional if you pay 
attention to details and don’t underestimate the importance of a good 









Production Music 
and Sound-Effects 

Ithough I often encourage multimedia producers to work with composers 
whenever they can, I also realize that there are times when this may be imprac- 
tical. The symbiotic relationship between composers and producers is usually a 
beneficial one to both parties, but many producers may be imable to establish 
this relationship because of various circumstances. 

Many people naturally turn to recordings by their favorite rock groups 
or jazz ensembles for theme and background music. If you’re one of these 
people, you’re most likely breaking the law. Whereas the copyright laws 
generally tolerate some recording of copyrighted material for personal use, 
adding commercially released music to a corporate presentation or a multi- 
media trade show display is not considered personal use. Generally speak- 
ing, if you’re using someone else’s music in your presentation and the 
copyright holder isn’t receiving royalties from it, you’re guilty of 
copyright infringement. 

When you work with a composer, you can avoid this trouble by arranging 
to acquire the rights to the composition when it’s complete. This arrange- 
ment, called a buyout, gives you the rights to use the music whenever you 
want. If you aren’t hiring a composer, however, there’s another alterna- 
tive: production music libraries. 



Production music libraries are the audio equivalent of film stock footage 
houses. They act as repositories of prescored music composed, produced, and 
edited specifically to provide a range of styles, tempos, moods, and textures for 
productions of all kinds. In previous years, the music was stored on tape or 
records, but these days, compact discs are considered the industry standard. 
Most libraries are continually growing, providing fresh material and current 
styles for ad agencies, editing facilities, and postproduction houses around the 

Aside from offering a wide assortment of musical material, production music 
libraries allow you to use finished recordings without the problem of first 
obtaining copyright clearances. Some libraries have a buyout policy, which lets 
you purchase a CD and then use its contents more or less fi^ly. With other 
libraries, you purchase or lease the rights to use a CD collection, and then pay 
a needk drop, or per-use fee, each time you use a cut in a presentation. 

Because the libraries are aimed primarily at the film and broadcast indus- 
tries, the music comes in various lengths, such as 60, 30, and 10 seconds, to 
reduce editing time. Most pieces also come in full-length versions and often 
include an alternate mix. This typically includes the background tracks 
without the melody to avoid interfering with narration. 

Sound effects are usually handled in a way similar to music. In fact, a large 
number of music libraries also offer sound-effects libraries and, as with music, 
compact discs are considered the norm. The following list of music and sound- 
effects libraries is by no means exhaustive, but it does give a good cross- 
sectional view of what’s out there. 

si Music and Sound Effects on 
Compact Disc 

AirCraft Music Library 
77 N. Washington St. 

Boston, MA 02114 
(800) 343-2514 

Production Music and Sound-Effects Libraries 


AirCraft offers a 50-CD collection covering a range of styles. The music comes 
in full-length versions with alternate mixes, 60-, 30-, 20-, and 10-second cuts, 
and repeating loops and short logos. Each CD focuses on a topic such as 
comedy, action, or instmction. Within each topic there are several appropriate 
musical styles. AirCraft supplements its collection with about ten new 
discs a year. 

Associated Production Music 
6255 Sunset Blvd., Suite 820 
Hollywood, CA 90028 
(800) 5434276 

APM offers four separate libraries with an impressive combined total of 
over 600 CDs and with over 120 new discs released each year. The music 
comes in a wide range of categories, including Americana, children’s music, 
comedy, country and western, drama, holidays, industry, jazz, jingles, eth- 
nic, classical, rock, sports, warfare, and romantic. Many pieces come in 
full-length versions as well as 29- and 59-second cuts. APM also offers 
an extensive sound-effects library, with over 60 CDs covering a wide 
range of sounds. 

Audio Action 

4444 Lakeside Dr. 

Burbank, CA 91505 
(800) 533-1293 

This is a large library with approximately 200 CDs in a variety of cate- 
gories, including pop, jazz, classical, industrial, ethnic, solo, period, com- 
edy, and drama. Each CD contains one category and includes full-length 
versions, jingle versions in 30- and 60-second lengths, alternate versions, 
and stings. Audio Action also offers a ten-CD collection of sound effeas. 

Capitol Production Music 

6922 Hollywood Blvd., Suite 718 
Hollywood, CA 90028 



Capitol offers over 60 CDs in its library called The Professional. It’s 
divided into five color<oded categories grouped by style and extensively 
cross-referenced. The Blue line has high-tech themes and background varia- 
tions. The Red line has contemporary pieces, including rock, new age, 
Latin, and dance. The Purple line has specialized material, including com- 
edy, drama, and travel. The Green line has classical works for large and 
small ensembles. The Golden line has vintage jazz, satirical pieces, and 
country and western. New CDs are issued regularly. 

Creative Support Services 
1950 Riverside Dr. 

Los Angeles, 90039 
(800) 468-6874 

This collection consists of 1 1 libraries on 39 CDs. There are d 5 mamic 
themes, 5-7 minute cuts, historical, period, and patriotic music, classical 
music, motivational pieces, panoramic music, and corporate cheers and 
jingles. CSS also offers a collection of approximately 400 real sound 
effects and 200 electronic effects. 

DeWolfe Music Library 
25 W. 45th St. 

New York, NY 10036 

DeWolf offers approximately 1 50 CDs with around 30 categories of music, 
including classical, opera, corporate, high-tech, pastoral, pop, children’s, 
ethnic, romantic, period, and vocal. These come in full-length versions and 
in some cases shorter cuts, such as 30- and 60-second lengths. DeWolf also 
offers an 1 1-CD sound-effects library providing general-purpose effects 
for a variety of situations. 

Hollywood Film Music Library 
1 1684 Ventura Blvd., Suite 850 
Studio City, CA 91604 
(818) 985-9997 

This 32-CD collection is organized into 22 musical style categories. 

There are full-length cues with multiple endings, stings, and 10-, 29-, and 

Production Music and Sound-Effects Libraries 


59- second formats. Some of the categories are industrial, pop rock, nature, 
romantic, classical, novelty, comedy, mystery, country, and big-band jazz. 

Killer Tracks 
6534 Simset Blvd. 

Hollywood, CA 90028 
(800) 877-0078 

The Killer Tracks Multimedia Library consists of three CDs, entitled 
Sales, Training, and Education. Each CD includes more than 30 seleaions 
of music divided into several categories: rock, urban, semiclassical, high- 
tech, comedy, mellow, industrial, and new age. Aside from the music, each 
CD contains several sound effects and production elements designed for 
desktop presentations. Killer Tracks also offers a complete library of stan- 
dard production music on 48 CDs in full-length versions with alternate 
mixes and 30- and 60-second cuts. Two CDs are devoted to stings, sweeps, 
links, bridges, and other elements. The remaining discs include categories 
such as blues, drama, fantasy, high-tech, new age, orchestral, rock, sports, 
mellow, and holiday. 

Manhattan Production Music 
311 W. 43rd St., Suite 702 
New York, NY 10036 
(800) 227-1954 

Each of the 38 CDs in this collection is broken down into 12 themes 
consisting of underscores, rhythm tracks, and 60-, 30-, 20-, and 10-second 
lengths, in addition to longer lengths of 2 to 15 minutes. The musical cate- 
gories include pop, rock, sports, news, symphonic, industrial, classical, 
marches, new age, comedy, and more. There is also a five-CD collection 
with 495 soimd effects designed for radio, television, and film production. 

Metro Music Productions 
645 West End Ave. 

New York, NY 10025 
(212) 799-7600 

This is a small collection of eight CDs consisting of over 200 titles in 
mixed styles ranging from urban high-tech rock to jazz fusion, new age. 



R&B, jazz, and blues. Titles are offered in full-length versions and 60-, 

30-, and 10-second cuts. 

Network Music 
11021 Via Frontera 
San Diego, CA 92127 
(800) 854-2075 

Network offers several music and sound-effeas libraries. Its Produaion 
Music Library contains over 105 CDs with categories that include busi- 
ness, sports, contemporary, solos, orchestral themes, specialty, seasonal, and 
comedy. Its Primrose Music Library features over 45 CDs with categories 
that include music from the Middle Ages, Renaissance, and Baroque peri- 
ods, children’s music, and slapstick, pop, industrial, and environmental 
music. Both libraries are updated each month. Network also offers a 50- 
volxune soimd-effeas collection containing over 4000 effects of various 
t3T3es. Another seven-CD set includes a variety of production elements 
for presentations of all kinds. 

52 Main St. 

Port Washington, NY 1 1050 
(800) 828-6664 

The Omnimusic Library consists of 56 CDs with full-length musical 
themes. Each CD contains an average of 18 themes with additional under- 
scores and alternate mixes. The categories include technology, sports, 
drama, classical, rock, coimtry, industrial, new age, and specialty. The Pro- 
fessional Broadcast Library of 17 CDs contains contemporary pieces with 
30- and 60-second cuts, along with stings, logos, and other musical effects. 
Omnimusic also offers the Omni-FX Library, a 12-CD collection of sound 
effects of different kinds for video and small studio applications. 

SoperSound Music Library 
P.O. Box 498 
Palo Alto, CA 94301 
(800) 227-9980 

Production Music and Sound-Effects Libraries 


SoperSound offers a sixteen-volume collection of production music, of 
which nine volumes are available on CD. Of these, one is a collection of 
sci-fi sound effects. The other CDs have a variety of musical styles, such as 
orchestral, contemporary, new age, fusion, jazz, exotic, sports, and high- 
tech. These are available in differing formats, such as extended-length, 

30-, and 60-second cuts. 

Sound Ideas 

105 W. Beaver Creek Rd., Suite 4 
Richmond Hill, ON L4B 1C6, Canada 
(800) 387-3030 

Sovmd Ideas is best known for its extensive and popular soimd-effects 
library, which is divided into six collections. The original 1000 and 2000 
series provide a total of over 5000 soimds on 50 CDs. The 3000 series 
offers ambience and background sotmds on 12 CDs. The Hollywood series 
provides 5 CDs of sounds designed for cartoons and movies. The Wheels 
series has 24 CDs with car and truck soimds. The Lucasfilm Sound Effects 
Library contains 6 CDs produced by sound designers at Skywalker Sound 
and by Sound Ideas for use in movies. Sound Ideas also offers a production 
music library designed for a variety of commercial purposes. Full-length 
themes are provided with alternate mixes and 30- and 60-second ver- 
sions where appropriate. 

TRF Production Music Libraries 
1619 Broadway 
New York, NY 10019 
(800) 899-MUSIC 

TRF offers an enormous number of musical selections from its nine differ- 
ent full-sized libraries, which total approximately 400 discs. The selections 
range from full-length pieces to jingle-length versions, including openings, 
transitions, dissolves, stings, and fanfares. Instrumentation ranges from full 
orchestra to small groups and solos. Its numerous libraries offer music in 
many categories, including industrial, new age, period, rock, atmospheric, 
comedy, electronic, jazz, sports, jingles, classical, ethnic, and Americana. 



27th Dimension 
2312 S.E. 29th St. 

Okeechobee, FL 34974 

Dimension offers three libraries of production music totaling 30 CDs 
designed to fill a variety of needs. The music comes in several tempos and 
categories, such as country, industrial, ethnic, rock, high-tech, children’s 
music, classical, sports, new age, and jazz. Some pieces come in full-length 
versions with alternate mixes, as well as 30- and 60-second cuts. Dimension 
also offers its Holophonic Sound Effects library, containing 1001 digitally 
recorded holophonic effects from around the world, and its Tech Effects 
library, containing 241 high-tech audio logos. For MIDI users. Dimension 
offers a collection of MIDI files. Additionally, Dimension’s HyperFEX 
collection offers sound effects for Macintosh applications. 


151 W. 46th St., Suite 803 
New York, NY 10036 
(800) 223-6278 

The Valentino Production Music Library consists of approximately 75 CDs 
designated by tempo and/or category. Some of the categories are contempo- 
rary, easy listening, industrial, specialty, sports, new age, and classical. The 
pieces come in full-length versions and 60- and 30-second cuts. Valentino’s 
Sound Effeas Library contains approximately 50 CDs of general-purpose 
sound effects grouped by category for easy reference. 

B Music and Sound Effects on 

If you want to incorporate production music into a desktop presentation, 
you’ll first have to record the music with a digitizer or sampler and save it 
in an appropriate file format. If the music needs editing, you’ll also need 
to use an editing program to make the necessary adjustments. 

Production Music and Sound-Effects Libraries 


It wasn’t long after multimedia began to take ofT that a number of people 
realized that producers of desktop presentations could benefit substantially 
by having their music and sound effects ready to go in a usable file format. 
Recently, a number of products have appeared that use CD-ROM technol- 
ogy to store sounds in digital form for direct importation into presentations 
or editing applications. The following are a few of this new breed of music 
and sound-effects libraries aimed specifically at Macintosh users. 

Digidesign, Inc. 

1360 Willow Rd., Suite 101 
Menlo Park, CA 94025 

The Clip Times CD-ROM was produced by Digides^ in collaboration with 
Prosonus. It contains 300 megabytes of stereo CD-quality soundfiles stored in 
Sound Designer El format, so you’ll need an Audiomedia card or Sound Tools 
(see Chapter 12) to use this library. The collection contains 22 musical pieces 
in lengths ranging from less than 30 seconds to almost 3 minutes. The selec- 
tions are grouped into folders by musical style, such as jazz, rock, new age, 
country, etc. A sound-effects section contains a variety of general-purpose 
effects and a number of medium-length ambience soiuids for backgrounds. 

The disc also includes a number of audio test signals from the Prosonus Studio 
Reference Disc. These are helpful for testing and calibrating your audio 

Olduvai Corp. 

7520 Red Rd., Suite A 
S. Aliami, FL 33143 
(305) 6654665 

The DTP & Multimedia CD mentioned in Chapter 7 includes a Sound 
Clips section with approximately 8 megabytes of sound effects. These are 
stored as SND sound resources in a number of H 5 T)erCard stacks. Each 
stack displays the sounds as buttons that you can click for previewing. The 
sounds cover a wide range of types and are especially suitable for Hyper- 
Card, SuperCard, and other compatible programs. 



Optical Media International 
180 Knowles Dr. 

Los Gatos, CA 95030 
(408) 376-3511 

Optical Media, a well-known leader in CD-ROM technology, has released 
two collections of sounds for the Macintosh. The Multimedia DeskTop 
Sounds disc offers more than 400 sound effects from around the world. 
These are stored in Apple SND sound resource format and catalogued in 
HyperCard. You can import the sounds into a variety of Macintosh applica- 
tions, as well as HyperCard, SuperCard, and other presentation programs. 
The Digital Sound Series consists of two discs with a total of 2762 sounds. 
These are high-quality soimdfiles stored in Sound Designer format. The 
collection contains mostly sound effects along with percussion and instru- 
ment soimds. 

Passport Designs, Inc. 

625 Miramontes St. 

Half Moon Bay, CA 94019 
(415) 726-0280 

The Sound Magic CD-ROM (produced jointly with Prosonus) offers thou- 
sands of samples and sound effects for use with Alchemy (see Chapter 13). 
Most of the sounds are samples of instruments, both acoustic and electronic, 
that you can edit and export to the sampler of your choice. There are also 
approximately 30 sound effects that you can use for animations or 


Sound Concentration: Uarious Sounds 

I VDiider vhat the 
right an3 ver is I 


mttn vncc 

lust for Fun 


/ Is I’ve mentioned earlier, the great thing about soimd is how it can add 
another level of involvement to what might otherwise be a simple display 
of visuals. Although graphics, text, and animation are themselves quite 
compelling, with the addition of sound, they can blossom into something 
altogether different. It’s true that sound is often used to convey specific 
information, but sound very readily lends itself to another equally impor- 
tant task— it makes things fun! The following programs illustrate how the 
addition of sound effects, speech, and music can raise a piece of software to 
a position above the prosaic. They use sound to draw you into their world 
of pictures and animation and make you smile in the process. 

S After Dark 

Every Mac user needs a screen saver. When you leave your computer 
screen on for an extended period of time, the static image can destroy the 
screen’s phosphor coating, resulting in a permanent ghost image called 
burn-in. The solution is simple: Replace the static image with a changing 
display. This makes screen savers a natural place to apply the art of anima- 
tion in a utilitarian manner that can benefit the computing world at large. 
But this doesn’t mean that screen savers have to be dull— a« contrairel After 
Dark (from Berkeley Systems) has elevated the art of screen saving to a new 
high. It offers over 30 different display modules that you can choose indi- 
vidually or in combination, and a second volume— More After Dark— adds 
another 25 to the list. 

After Dark uses beautiful, sometimes mesmerizing, often whimsical, and 
always entertaining animations that are both colorful and inventive. And 



best of all they use sound. Many of the modules have digitized sound that 
greatly enhances these mini-presentations and boosts the level of whimsy 
accordingly. The famous Flying Toaster module (Figure 20.1) lets you set 
how dark your toast will be and provides the sound of flapping wings as the 
toasters fly by. The much-beloved suboceanic module called Fish! lets you 
choose the kinds of sea creatures that swim across your screen while the 
sound of bubbling water creates just the right ambience. The sounds of 
thunder and lightning, bovmcing balls, munching worms, shooting stars, 
dripping drops, and ticking clocks each contribute to the overall sense of 
fun that these modules bring and help combat boredom at the same time. 

Figure 20.1 

The famous Flying 
Toasters save your 
screen with flapping 
wings and sound 

You can also save your saeen with a company logo, a scrolling message, or a 
random combination of your favorite displays. To choose or modify a module, 
you open the After Dark control panel (Figure 20.2). On the left you’ll find a 
list of the available displays, and on the right there are several controls that 
affect the currently selected module. If a module has sound, you’ll see a 
speaker icon next to the Demo button. By clicking on the speaker’s up and 
down arrows, you can set the volume level or turn off the sound. 

After Dark uses beautiful, sometimes mesmerizing, often whimsical, and 
always entertaining animations that are both colorful and inventive. And 
best of all they use sotmd. Many of the modules have digitized sound that 

Just for Fun 


Figure 20.2 
The After Dark 
control panel 

D J After Dark 

Confetti Factory 



Down tie Cran 



FI; fig Toasters 
GeoB ounce 
Hard Rain 
Life II 




Number O’ Fish; 12 



Speed : Normal 

^ Show Sea Floor 

[ Options... ] 

(DOl [ Demo ] 

Fish! by Ed Fries & 
©1990 To-n&Ed'j 

Tom Saxton. 

( Bogus Software. ^ 

box. Additionally, a System IQ feature monitors disk access and CPU load as 
well as activity levels on the printer and modem ports to determine when it’s 
appropriate to engage the screen saver. Note: Some MIDI programs access the 
serial ports in nonstandard ways, so MIDI activity alone from these programs 
may not stop After Dark from activating. 

After Dark offers numerous ways to customize your displays. The Ran- 
domizer lets you select any combination of After Dark modules and display 
them in random or sequential order. You can set the length of time that 
each module is displayed before it’s replaced by the next one. The Logo 
module lets you use your own graphic, pasted from the clipboard, to create 
a custom screen-saver image. The Picmre Frame module allows you to use 
any color PICT file as a screen sa^er, and the Message module lets you 
create lines of moving text. With the PICS Player, you can use animation 
files created in other applications to produce animated displays. The multi- 
module lets you combine several displays on the screen simultaneously 
in a number of ways. 

The After Dark documentation also includes a thorough programmer’s 
manual that details how to write your own graphics modules. After Dark 
supports SND sotmd resources and lets you specify a Volume value from 0 
to 7. 



Many of the algorithmically generated displays are simply amazing, others 
have a calming effect, and still others bring a smile to your face even after a 
hard day of computing. My biggest complaint about After Dark is that I 
frequently find myself watching my screen saver for long periods of time 
instead of getting back to work. Such are the hazards of combining function 
with fun. 

^1 Kid Pix 

Kid Pix (from Broderbund Software) is an exceptional program that brings the 
joys of creating computer art to kids of all ages. It was designed so that chil- 
dren who aren’t old enough to read can use it with ease and fully explore its 
many hidden treasures. Late at night, when the kids are asleep, the adults can 
sneak over to the computer and do a little doodling of their own. Be sure to 
turn the volume down a bit because Kid Pix comes with a surprising assort- 
ment of sound effects and speech that turns this inventive painting environ- 
ment into a veritable fun house of animated shapes and textures. From its 
crazy sound effects and patterns that burst into color to its wacky brushes and 
mystery tools, the program invites exploration and discovery. 

The Kid Pix Drawing Screen (Figure 20.3) starts out like a blank sheet of 
paper, which is entirely visible when you open the program. This eliminates 
the need for scroll bars and lets you see what you’ll get if you print out your 
picture. The drawing tools appear on a vertical palene to the left of the 
screen— there are no confusing menus or dialog boxes needed to get started. 

Each tool comes with its own set of options that appear along the bottom of 
the screen. To get to work, you just select a tool and start clicking and drag- 
ging around the screen. When you select a new tool, the tool options below 
the screen change to offer a wide assortment of choices that control such 
things as line width and pattern, drawing styles, and eraser effeas. If you’re 
using a color system, a color palette appears on the left beneath the tools. 
The currently selected color appears in a box at the top of the palette and 
indicates the color that the current tool will produce. Some of the tool 
options produce multicolored effects. 

Just for Fun 


Figure 20.3 

The Kid Pix 
Drawing Screen is 
shown here with 
just a few of its 
many creative 

Most of the tool options are available in several banks that you can cycle 
through with the arrow button on the right. The Wacky Brush tool, for 
example, comes with a number of entertaining options. The Leaky Pen 
option creates ink blotches whenever the pen stops moving. The Northern 
Lights option aeates colorful horizontal and vertical aurora borealis patterns. 
The Drippy Paint option creates lines that have paint drips running from 
them, and the Connect-The-Dots option lets you aeate your own dot-to-dot 
pictures— automatically numbered, with or without the lines. 

The list goes on and on. There are bubbles, dots, and zigzags, kaleidoscopes, 
magnifying glasses, and echoes, spray paint, pine needles, and much more. You 
can CTeate Jackson Pollock effeas, generate “fractal” trees, or produce a galaxy 
of stars. When you tire of your picture, you can use the Electric Mixer tool to 
transform the whole display into something entirely different. Or you can use 
the Eraser tool with its hilarious options, or the Rubber Stamps, Text, or 
Moving Van. 



As if the graphics weren’t enough, this whole cavalcade of creativity comes 
complete with a dazzling array of sound effects. Paint gurgles as it pours, 
pens drip, the letters speak their names (in either English or Spanish), fire- 
crackers explode, sliding doors clatter as they open, the eraser makes a rub- 
bing sound, the truck screeches to a halt, and pictures and symbols fall into 
place with a definitive click. Kids find these effects enormously entertain- 
ing, and the sounds further stimulate creativity as they reinforce learning. 

Kid Pix also lets you record your own sound effects, music, or speech if 
you have MacRecorder or a Macintosh with built-in recording capability. 

To record your sounds, choose Record from the Goodies menu. This opens 
a standard recording dialog box like the one described in Chapter 16. 

When you have a recording that you like, you simply click Save and the 
sound is attached to your drawing. If you decide to save your drawing to 
disk, you have the option of saving it with or without the sound. Pictures 
saved with a recorded sound automatically play the sound upon opening. 
After that, you can hear your sound by choosing Play from the Goodies 
menu. To speed up the sound, cUck the Option key. To slow down the 
soimd, press the spacebar. 

Kid Pix rightly captures the true essence of multimedia by combining 
sound, graphics, text, and animation into an inexpensive program that frees 
the artist within us all. With Kid Pix there is no right or wrong; there is no 
better or worse. The creative process is its own reward, and soimd makes it 
all the more memorable. 

^1 Talking Moose 

Are you feeling kind of lonely lately? Need some company while you’re 
chained to that keyboard? Maybe you should consider a talking moose. The 
first Talking Moose began appearing on Macintosh screens in 1986 as a 
shareware desk accessory. It gained widespread popularity through bulletin 
board services and shareware distribution outlets and eventually went 
through several revisions. Now it has been transformed into a full-color 
Control Panel device with improved animation and a complete Cartoon 
Carnival of strange and amusing characters. In its new, commercially 

Just for Fun 


released version from Baseline Publishing, Talking Moose comes with a 
variety of tools and applications that let you customize the program and 
experiment with the characters and what they say. But what exactly is Talk- 
ing Moose? 

Talking Moose and his Cartoon Carnival are an assortment of animated 
characters that pop up on your screen, for various reasons, and talk to you. 
Sometimes what they say is helpful, sometimes it’s fimny, and sometimes 
it’s just annoying. The Talking Moose (Figure 20.4) greets you when you 
start your computer and says good-bye when you shut down. Between 
times he may pop up to remind you to get back to work if the computer has 
been idle too long. Or he may drop by to deliver some sarcastic remark or 

Figure 20,4 

The Talking 

As you work, the Moose (or one of his pals) speaks the names of menu 
options when you choose them or tells you the names of windows when 
they open. He also reads and speaks the messages in dialog boxes and alerts. 
If you get tired of the Moose, you can use the Choose a Picture window 
(Figure 20.5) to select one of the other Cartoon Carnies to replace him— 
only one character at a time can be active. 

Talking Moose uses MacirOalk to generate its speech. The program comes 
with an enhanced version of Macirffalk that is more compatible with Sys- 
tem 7 than earlier versions and offers additional features such as the ability 
to interrupt the speech quickly with a mouse click. Talking Moose also 
comes with a complete utility program that lets you edit and personalize the 
spoken phrases. You can add your own moose jokes or change the greetings 
to suit your taste. With the Preferences dialog box (Figure 20.6), you can 
determine when the Moose will appear and how he will behave. Addition- 
ally, with the optional Cartoon Creator application, you can produce your 
own animated characters and install them into the Talking Moose program. 



Figure 20.5 

The Choose a 
Picture window lets 
you select a replace- 
ment for the Talk- 
ing Moose. 

Figure 20.6 

The Talking 
Moose Preferences 
dialog box 

Preferences i 

r- Pitch 

O Uery Loui 
O Loui 
0 Normal 
O Medium 
O Uery High 

- Rate 

O Hery Sloui 
O Sloui 
(§) Medium 
O Uery Fast 

. ^Uolume- 


Use Control 
Panel Uolume 
O 7 “ Loudest 
® 5 » Loud 
0 3" Softer 
O 1 “ Softest 

- Rbilitles 

E Ruto-Startup 
^ Use Startup Icon 
S Reserue Memory 
^ Interruptable Speech 

^ Speak after Pauses 
^ Speak Menus 
^ Speak liUndouis 
M Shorn Rnimation 

- Delay 

O 1 0 secs 
O 30 secs 
O 1 min 
O 2 mins 
O 5 mins 
0 1 0 mins 
O 15 mins 
O 30 mins 
O 1 hour 
O 2 hours 
O 12 hours 

If you’ve ever wanted to fool around with MaciriTalk, this program is a good 
place to start. It comes with a Phonemes Reference desk accessory that pro- 
vides a quick guide to the phonetic spellings used by A^acMTalk to generate 
speech from text. The Moose Proof desk accessory reads any text that you’ve 
typed into your favorite word processor. Just selea a block of text and copy it 
to the clipboard. Then paste it into Moose Proof and the Moose will read what 
you’ve written. If you want it to sound right, use the Phonemes Reference to 
help you change the text to the appropriate phonetic spellir^. The documen- 
tation includes lots of advice on using MaciriTalk. 

Just for Fun 


If you want to use Talking Moose with other applications, the program 
includes a stack that makes Talking Moose compatible with HyperCard and 
another stack that lets you modify programs to work with Talking Moose. 
The Moose Goes H)T3er stack provides XCMDs that allow you to control 
Talking Moose from within HyperCard stacks, and the Advanced Moose 
stack covers ResEdit and how to use it to customize applications for the 
Talking Moose. 

I Adventures in Musicland 

Certainly one of the most appropriate and worthwhile reasons to combine 
sound, graphics, and text is for the teaching of music. The Macintosh is 
especially well suited for creating entertaining environments that children 
of all ages can use to explore the intricacies of music and its elements. Rec- 
ognizing this fact. Dr. T’s Music Software has released Adventures in 
Musicland— an inexpensive introduaion to music that teaches with anima- 
tion and digitized sounds. Adventures in Musicland is a collection of four 
musical games that anyone can enjoy even if they don’t have any musical 
backgrotmd or previous musical experience. The colorful animations are 
based on the John Tenniel illustrations from Lewis Carroll’s classic story, 
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Most of the games require no spelling or 
typing skills, so even very yoimg children can play, although it helps to 
have a grown-up handy to read the White Rabbit’s comments and to enter 
occasional text. Each game has numerous answers that appear in different 
combinations to provide the right blend of exploration and repetition. The 
games also have different levels of difficulty to maintain the sense of chal- 
lenge and to let adults get in on the act. With the help of the Mad Hatter, 
the White Rabbit, the King and Queen of Hearts, the Cheshire Cat, and 
Alice, you can learn to identify musical instruments and sounds, symbols 
and terminology, and famous composers. 

All foiu’ games have a similar user interface, the same menu items, and a 
similar set of buttons and dialog boxes. The White Rabbit stands to the left 
and issues instructions, makes suggestions, and offers encouragement. You 
can use the Hint and Show Answer buttons if you get stuck, but you’ll lose 
some points. 



In the Picture Perfect game (Figure 20.7), you try to guess the name of 
a composer, an instrument, or a musical symbol that is revealed to you one 
piece at a time. Whenever you click the More Picture button, another piece 
of the puzzle appears. The White Rabbit will give you a clue if you click 
the Hint button. When you’re ready to guess, you can type in the answer 
and click the Check My Answer button. 

Figure 20.7 
The Picture Per- 
fect game teaches 
you about com- 
posers, instruments, 
and musical symbols. 

Picture Perfect: Instruments 

Prokofiev used me 
for the wolf in 
"Peter and the 

[start Neiu Gome] [ Instructions... ] [ Shoiu flnsmer ) [ Check My Rnrmer ] 
[ Options... ] [ Hint ] [ More Picture ] [Shoiu High Scores...] 

The Melody Mixup game (Figure 20.8) develops melody recognition and 
memory skills by asking you to re-create an ever-growing pattern of notes 
played by the on-screen characters. First one of the characters plays a note. 
When you click on that character, he plays back the note. Then the first 
character and a second character play notes that you must duplicate in the 
proper sequence. The melody continues to grow until you reach the length 
set in the Options dialog box (5, 10, 15 notes or infinite) or until you make 
a mistake. 

You can choose one of three groups of characters, each of which have differ- 
ent numbers of performers that play different scales. The trumpeters play 
the notes in a major chord, the bell ringers play a pentatonic scale, and the 
cats meow the notes of a complete major scale. The difficulty setting deter- 
mines the amount of helpful animation that accompanies each performance. 

Just for Fun 


Figure 20.8 
The Melody 
Mixup game 
develops melody 
recognition and 

Melody MiHup: 4 Trumpeters 

[ start Netii Game ][ 


][ Shoui Rnsiiier 


[ Options... ][ 


][ Shoui High Scores... 


The Sound Concentration game (Figure 20.9) is an aural memory builder. 
Each time you click on a top hat, a rabbit pokes its head up and makes a 
sound. You then click a second hat and listen to that rabbit’s soimd. If the 
two sounds match, the rabbits pop out of the hats and you earn points. If 
the sounds don’t match, the rabbits return into their hats and you try again 
to find a matching pair. The sounds can be anything from a tuba or a piano 
to a frog or a bird. Some of the sounds are actually a series of two or more 
notes that fi)rm intervals, triads, or scales. 

The final game. Music Match, is another recognition and memory builder. 
This time the elements are visual, and they can consist of music symbols, notes 
and rests, instruments, notes in treble clef, and notes in bass clef. Several play- 
ing cards are displa)^ facedown. When you click on one, it flips over, reveal- 
ing a symbol or picture. You then click a second card and try to make a match. 
Each time you match a pair, you gain points. If the pictures don’t match, the 
cards flip tock and you can try again. The Options dialog box lets you deter- 
mine the number of cards used in the game and how long the pictures remain 
visible before flipping back. 



Adventures in Musicland turns music education into a lively exploration of 
sounds and symbols. The fim and challenge of solving the puzzles serves to 
maintain your level of interest as you develop new skills. This combination of 
sound effects, music, text, and animation effectively illustrates multimedia’s 
great potential for teaching. 

Figure 20.9 

The Sound Con- 
centration game 
awards points for 
matching sounds. 

[ start New Gome 




Show Answer ] 

[ Options... 




Show High Scores... ] 


Atlnglo M.M 

sntli* voce 


aftertouch A type of MIDI controller data that indicates how hard a key 
is pressed after it is struck and before it is released. 

algorithm A set of digital instructions or a pattern of information used in 
implementing a specific task or fimction. 

aliasing The phenomenon that results when false frequencies (lower 
harmonic multiples of the frequencies above the Nyquist limit) enter 
a digital recording, causing harmonic distortion. 

amplitude The strength of a sound or audio signal— perceived by the 
listener as volume. 

analog An electrical signal that varies continuously in strength and 
frequency in a direct relationship to sound waves or other variable 

analog-to-digital converter A circuit that changes the continuously 
fluctuating voltages from an analog source into digital information for 
processing and storage in a computer or other digital device. 

attack The beginning of a sound. 

Audio IFF Audio Interchange File Format; also abbreviated AIFF. A 
standard audio file format supported by many applications, including 
Alchemy and Sound Designer II. 

compressed sound A digital sound that has been altered so that it 
requires less memory— at the expense of lower sound quality. 



continuous controllers A set of MIDI messages, t5?pically coming 
from a device such as a thumb wheel, lever, slider, or pedal, that represents 
dynamic or continuously varying performance data. These are most often 
used to add expressive content to MIDI music. 

cue A scene or section of a scene from a film or video that requires sound 
effects or music. Cues can range from a few seconds to several minutes, and 
the music can be as little as a single note or as much as a complex orchestral 
score. The specific on-screen event that initiates a cue is sometimes referred 
to as hit point. 

DAT Abbreviation for digital audiotape; a storage medium for digital 
audio data, which uses a small cassette resembling a miniature video 

dB Abbreviation for decibel; a unit of measurement used to indicate 
sound level differences; also used to indicate a signal’s amplitude. 

decay The decrease, over time, of a sound’s volume. Typically used to 
describe the change in amplitude that occurs as a sound progresses from one 
segment of its envelope to a segment with a lower amplitude level. 

digital Using binary operations to acquire, store, retrieve, and modify 
information. The opposite of analog, digital circuits assign discrete values 
to variable events which can then be edited through software. 

digital-to-analog converter A circuit that changes digital information 
into a continuously fluctuating voltage that can be sent to an amplifier 
to produce sound. 

DSP Abbreviation for digital signal processing. A method of manip- 
ulating audio data through the use of algorithms. 

envelope A shape representing the changes in a sound’s overall signal level 
as a function of time. Most envelopes consist of at least four stages: attack, 
decay, sustain, and release. These are commonly referred to as ADSR 



envelope generator A circuit or its software equivalent that changes a 
sound’s parameters over time. Most often used to affea a sound’s volume as 
the soimd progresses from b^inning to end; also called a contour generator. 

equalization The selective alteration of an audio signal’s frequency 
spectrum; abbreviated EQ. 

filter A circuit or its software equivalent that removes or attenuates 
certain elements in the audio frequency spectrum. 

hertz The standard unit of measurement for frequency; abbreviated Hz. 
It is equivalent to cycles per second. 

keyboard controller A piano-like keyboard used to send MIDI data to a 
soimd module or computer. 

layback The process of rerecording the mixed audio tracks back to the 
edited master videotape. 

layering Triggering two or more independent sounds from a single key 

LFO Abbreviation for low-frequency oscillator; a circuit or function that 
generates an alternating subaudio frequency (usually in the 1-15 Hz range) 
for creating effects such as vibrato, tremolo, and wahwah. 

loop A portion of a sound or a section of music that repeats over and over 
when played. In sequences, a loop is typically a musical phrase. With sampled 
sounds, a loop allows a sound of fixed length to last as long as the key that 
triggers it is depressed. 

MACE Abbreviation for Macintosh Audio Compression and Expansion; 
a set of Sound Manager routines that allows an application to compress 
and decompress audio data. 



MIDI Pronounced “middy”; abbreviation for Musical Instrument Digital 
Interface. The standardized language and protocol that enables synthesizers 
and other electronic devices to communicate with one another regardless of 
manufacturer or synthesis system used. MIDI is a serial interface with a 
transmission rate of 31.25 kBaud. 

MIDI channel One of the 16 numerical data designations that allow you 
to independently address several instruments over a single MIDI cable. In a 
MIDI system the different instruments can be set to respond to specific 
channels while ignoring others. 

MIDI interface A hardware device that attaches to one or both of the 
Macintosh’s serial ports and translates MIDI data into a form that the 
computer can imderstand. This allows you to connea MIDI instruments 
to your computer for recording, playing, and editing MIDI performances 
and compositions. 

modulation The process of varying one signal with another. Typically 
this involves introducing a control signal to alter the characteristics of a 

monophonic Capable of plapng only one note at a time. 

multitimbral Pronounced “multy-tambrul”; having the ability to 
produce more than one instrument sound at a time. Synthesizers having 
this capability can generate instrumental ensembles (such as a woodwind 
qitintet or jazz combo) in real time when controlled by a sequencer. 

Nyquist limit The highest frequency— equal to V 2 the sampling 
rate— that you can record digitally without causing aliasing. 

oscillator A circuit or its software equivalent that generates audio 

parameter A variable characteristic, value, or element. 



patch A set of synthesizer parameters that produce a specific sound; 
sometimes referred to as a program. 

PCM Abbreviation for pulse code modulation; a method used for 
encoding and storing sampled sounds. 

pitch bend A type of continuous controller that momentarily raises or 
lowers the frequency of a sound, usually through the movements of a wheel 
or lever. 

polyphony The production of more than one note at a time. A flute or 
clarinet is monophonic, whereas a piano or harp is polyphonic. A 
synthesizer with 8-note polyphony can produce up to 8 notes 
simultaneously in either a chordal or contrapuntal setting. Most modern 
synthesizers are capable of at least 16-note polyphony. 

postproduction The period of development for a film or video that 
occurs between the completion of photography and the acceptance of the 
final release print. 

program change A MIDI message that causes an instrument to change 
from one sound (patch) to another. 

quantization The process of measuring the levels of an analog signal at 
specific points in time and assigning the signal a series of numerical values 
that represent its continuously fluctuating voltages as discrete steps. Also 
referred to as digitization. 

quantize In a MIDI sequencer program, to correa rhythmic inaccuracies 
by aligning notes to specific rhythmic divisions or subdivisions. 

real time The acmal time in which something takes place. With se- 
quencers it refers to a method of recording MIDI data where the notes and 
other events are entered into the computer at a speed roughly proportional 
to the playback speed— the opposite of step time. 



release The final stage of an envelope, following a note-off message, 
during which the signal typically returns to a zero value. 

sample A digitally recorded sound. 

sampler An electronic keyboard instrument that takes short digital 
recordings of sounds and, after editing and processing, uses them as the 
basis for creating its musical tones. A sampler is to music what a scaimer is 
to visual art, in that it relies on preexisting sources for its input. Samplers 
excel at reproducing harmonically rich acoustic timbres. 

sampling rate The number of times per second that an incoming ana- 
log signal is examined during the process of converting it into digital form. 
Typical sample rates range from 1 1 kHz to 48 kHz. The higher the 
sampling rate, the better the sound. 

sawtooth wave A waveform that has a jagged appearance resembling 
the teeth of a saw. It consists of a fundamental and all of its harmonics. 
Sawtooth waves produce a bright, brassy sound. 

semitone A chromatic interval or half step; the difference in pitch 
between two adjacent keys on a piano. 

sequencer A software program that records a musical performance in 
the form of a series of MIDI events and messages, such as note on, note off, 
velocity, aftertouch, etc. Aspects of the performance can then be edited in 
detail or with global commands. 

serial A type of connection that transfers data one bit after another rather 
than several bits at a time. 

sine wave A simple waveform consisting of a single frequency with no 
overtones. Sine waves produce a pure, somewhat muted soimd. 

SMPTE Pronounced “simpty”; abbreviation for Society of Motion 
Picture and Television Engineers. A standard-setting professional 



SMPTE timecode A timing reference based on the concept of hours, 
minutes, seconds, and frames. When timecode is recorded onto the audio 
track of a videotape, each frame is given its own specific identifying num- 
ber. This allows precise location and synchroni2ation anywhere on the tape. 

sound module A synthesizer that lacks its own attached keyboard. It is 
essentially the sound-producing component of a synthesizer or sampler and 
requires input from an external controller via MIDI to produce its sounds. 

sound resource A file format (SND) supported by the Macintosh 
system software and HyperCard. 

soundfile A type of file, such as Audio IFF or Soimd Designer II, that is 
used to store sound data. 

spotting session The meeting between a composer and a film or video 
director where decisions are made— while viewing a work print— about the 
type and placement of music. Also applies to narration and sound effects. 

square wave A waveform that consists of a fundamental and its 
odd-numbered harmonics. Square waves produce a hollow, sometimes 
reedy sound. 

stack A H3q)erCard document consisting of one or more cards. 

step time A method of entering MIDI data one event at a time as 
opposed to recording in real time. 

sting A single musical chord or note used for dramatic effect in a film or 
video scene. 

stripe To record a timecode signal onto a tape track. 

sustain The part of a sound’s envelope where the level remains constant 
for a period of time. 



synchronizer A device that reads timecode from two or more tape 
transports (audio or video) and coordinates their operation with a common 
timing reference. 

synthesizer An electronic musical instrument that generates sounds 
through its audio signal-processing circuitry. Currently there are many 
systems of synthesis in use; additive, subtractive, frequency modulation, 
linear arithmetic, and others. Unlike samplers, synthesizers do not rely on 
outside sources for their sounds. 

system exclusive A type of MIDI message that is specific to one in- 
strument or family of instruments and whose format is defined by the 
instrument’s manufacturer. 

tempo The rate of speed at which a piece of music is played; typically 
indicated in beats per minute. 

timbre Pronounced “tambur”; the quality of a sound, resulting from its 
harmonic content, that distinguishes one instrument or soimd from another 
at the same pitch and volume. Often referred to as tom color. 

timecode See SMPTE timecode. 

transpose To change a piece of music from one pitch or key to another. 

tremolo A common type of amplitude modulation. 

triangle ivave A waveform with a relatively pure sound and a some- 
what muted quality similar to a sine wave, but with some additional weak 

velocity A MIDI message that indicates how fast a note is played or 

vibrato A common type of frequency modulation used for musical 



waveform A visual representation of a sound. 

window dub A video work print with a reaangular window superimposed 
on the video image, which displays the SMPTE timecode numbers as they 
change. This allows the editor and composer to watch the minutes and seconds 
flash by as the video progresses. 

XCMD Abbreviation for external command; a command written in a 
programming language other than HyperTalk that extends HyperCard’s 
built-in command set. 

XFCN Abbreviation for external function; a function written in a 
programming language other than HyperTalk that extends HyperCard’s 
built-in command set. 

zero crossing The point at which a digital waveform crosses the center 
line between its range of possible positive and negative values. 


Stitt (y vocc 

List of Companies 

Acoustic Research 
330 Turnpike St. 

Canton, MA 02021 
(617) 821-2300 

Adobe Systems, Inc. 

1098 Alta Ave. 

Mountain View, CA 94039 
(415) 961-4400 

Aldus Corp. 

411 First Ave. South 
Seattle, WA 98104 
(206) 622-5500 

Altech Systems 
122 Paries Industrial Park Dr. 
Shreveport, LA 71106 
(318) 868-8036 

Apple Computer, Inc. 

20525 Mariani Ave. 

Cupertino, CA 95014 
(408) 996-1010 

Articulate Systems, Inc. 

600 W. Cummings Park, Suite 4500 
Woburn, MA 01801 
(617) 935-5656 

Baseline Publishing, Inc. 

1770 Moriah Woods Blvd., Suite 14 
Memphis, TN 38117 
(901) 682-9676 

Berkeley Systems, Inc. 

2095 Rose St. 

Berkeley, CA 94709 
(510) 540-5535 

Bright Star Technology, Inc. 

1450 114th Ave., SE, Suite 200 
Bellevue, WA 98004 

Broderbund Software, Inc. 

P.O Box 6125 
Novato, CA 94948 
(415) 382-4700 

CD Technology, Inc. 

766 San Aleso Ave. 

Sunn5wale, CA 94086 
(408) 752-8500 

Celestial Wind Carillons 
Route 1, Box 32, Hwy. 23 South 
Eureka Springs, AR 72632 



Claris Corp. 

5201 Patrick Henry Dr., Box 58168 
Santa Clara, CA 95052 
(408) 727-8227 

Digidesign, Inc. 

1360 Willow Rd., Suite 101 
Menlo Park, CA 94025 
(415) 327-8811 

Dr. T’s Music Software 
124 Crescent Rd., Suite 3 
Needham, MA 02194 

Dynaware USA, Inc. 

950 Tower Lane, Suite 1 1 50 
Foster City, CA 94404 
(415) 349-5700 

EarLevel Engineering 
21213-B Hawthorne Blvd., Suite 5305 
Torrance, CA 90509 
(310) 316-2939 

7434 Trade St. 

San Diego, CA 92121 
(619) 536-9999 

Electronic Arts 

1450 Fashion Island Blvd. 

San Mateo, CA 94404 
(415) 571-7171 

E-mu Systems, Inc. 

1600 Green Hills Rd. 

Scotts Valley, CA 95067 

Farallon Computii^, Inc. 

2000 Powell St., Suite 600 
Emeiyville, CA 94608 

(415) 596-9100 

Five Pin Press 
P.O. Box 550363 
Dallas, TX 75355 
(214) 328-2730 

Gold Disk Inc. 

5155 Spectrum Way, Suite 5 
Mississauga, Ontario L4W 5A1 

(416) 602-4000 

Greytsounds Sound Development 
8700 Reseda Blvd., Suite 101 
Northridge, CA 91324 
(818) 773-7327 

International MIDI Association 
5316 W. 57th St. 

Los Angeles, CA 90056 
(310) 649-6434 

JLCooper Electronics 
12500 Beatrice St. 

Los Angeles, CA 90066 

Kawai America Corp. 

2055 E. University Dr. 

Compton, CA 90220 

Korg, Inc. 

89 Frost St. 

Westbury, NY 11590 

List of Companies 


MacroMind/Paracomp, Inc. 

600 Townsend St., Suite 310W 
San Francisco, CA 94103 
(415) 442-0200 

Mark of the Unicom, Inc. 

222 Third St. 

Cambridge, MA 02142 
(617) 576-2760 

McGill University Master Samples 
555 Sherbrooke St. West 
Montreal, Quebec H3A 1E3 
(514) 398-4548 


Box 2362 

Westmont, IL 60559 
(708) 789-2001 

MIDI Manufacturers Association 
5316 W. 57th St. 

Los Angeles, CA 90056 
(310) 649-6434 

Monster Design Group 
274 Wattis Way 

South San Francisco, CA 94080 
(415) 871-6000 

Motion Works 

1020 Mainland St., Suite 130 
Vancouver, B.C. V6B 2T4 
(604) 685-9975 

Mus-Art Productions 
P.O. Box 680664 
Orlando, FL 32868 
(407) 290-MIDI 

New Sound Music 
P.O. Box 37363 
Oak Park, MI 48237 
(313) 355-3643 

Olduvai Corp. 

7520 Red Rd., Suite A 
South Miami, FL 33143 
(305) 665-4665 

Opcode Systems, Inc. 

3641 Haven Dr., Suite A 
Menlo Park, CA 94025 
(415) 369-8131 

Parker Adams Group 
12335 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 124 
Los Angeles, CA 90025 

Passport Designs, Inc. 

100 Stone Pine Rd. 

Half Moon Bay, CA 94019 

(415) 726-0280 

PG Music, Inc. 

1 1 1-266 Elmwood Ave. 

Buffalo, NY 14222 

(416) 528-4897 

Phil Wood Consulting 
3450 Granada Ave., Suite 50 
Santa Clara, CA 95051 
(800) 484-1096 ext. 3525 


11126 Weddington St. 

North Hollywood, CA 91601 
(818) 766-5221 



Roland Corp. 

7200 Dominion Circle 
Los Angeles, CA 90040 

Sound Quest Inc. 

66 Broadway Ave., Suite 1207 
Toronto, Ontario M4P 1T6 
(416) 322-6434 

17700 Ra 3 mier St., Suite 1001 
Nonhridge, CA 91325 
(818) 993-4091 

Tran Tracks 

133 West 72nd St., Suite 601 
New York, NY 10023 
(201) 383-6691 

Trycho Music International 

2166 W. Broadway St., Suite 330 

Anaheim, CA 92804 
(800) 543-8988 

\byager Co. 

1351 Pacific Coast Hwy. 

Santa Monica, CA 90401 

VPL Research, Inc. 

656 Bair Island Rd., 3rd Floor 
Redwood City, CA 94063 
(415) 361-1710 

Works Music Productions, Inc. 
P.O. Box 22681 
Milwaukie, OR 97222 
(503) 659-3964 

Yamaha International Corp. 
6600 Orangethorpe Ave. 

Buena Park, CA 90620 
(714) 522-9011 

sattn vncc 





Anderton, Craig. MIDI for Musicians. New York: Amsco Publi- 
cations, 1986. 

Apple Computer, Inc. Inside Macintosh, Volume VI. Menlo Park, Calif.: 
Addison- Wesley Publishing Company, 1991. 

Bryan, Marvin. Introduction to Macintosh System 7. San Francisco: 

SYBEX, 1991. 

Carlin, Dan, Sr. Music in Film and Video Productions. Boston: Focal 
Press, 1991. 

Casty, Alan. Development of the Film: An Interpretive History. New York: 
Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1973. 

Giannetti, Louis D. Understanding Movies. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: 
Prentice-Hall, 1972. 

Goldberg, Michael. The Ultimate Home Studio. Menlo Park, Calif: Digi- 
design, 1991. 

Goodman, Danny. The Complete HyperCard 2.0 Handbook. New York: 
Bantam Books, 1990. 

Heid, Jim. Macworld Complete Mac Handbook. San Mateo, Calif: IDG 
Books Worldwide, 1991. 

Hubatka, Milton C., Frederick Hull, and Richard W. Sanders. Audio Sweet- 
ening for Film and TV Blue Ridge Summit, Penn.: Tab Books, 1985. 

Huber, David M. Random Access Audio. Menlo Park, Calif: Digi- 
design, 1990. 



McClelland, Deke. Macintosh System 7: Everything You Need to Know. 

San Francisco: SYBEX, 1992. 

Milano, Dominic, ed. Mind Over MIDI. Milwaukee: Hal Leonard 
Books, 1987. 

Mott, Robert L. Sound Effects: Radio, T]^ and Film. Boston: Focal 
Press, 1990. 

Pohlmaim, Ken C. Principles of Digital Audio. Carmel, Ind.: Howard W. 
Sams & Co., 1989. 

Weis, Elisabeth and John Belton, eds. Film Sound- Theory and Practice. 
New York: Columbia University Press, 1985. 

Yelton, Geary. Music and the Macintosh. Atlanta: MIDI America, 1989. 


Computer Pictures. White Plains, N.Y.: Montage Publishing. 

Electronic Musician. Emeryville, Calif.: Act III Publishing. 

Film & Video. Los Angeles: Optic Music. 

Home & Studio Recording. Chatsworth, Calif: Music Maker Publications. 
Keyboard. San Francisco: Miller Freeman Publications. 

MacUser. New York: Ziff-Davis Publishing Co. 

Macworld. San Francisco: Aiacworld Communications. 

New Media Products. Los Altos, Calif: New Media Research. 




Actions dialog box (MediaTracks), 325 

with Animation Works^ 307 
with interFACE, 314-318, 320-321 
with Paracomp Magic, 326-328 
with PROmotion, 333 
ADDmotion II program, 338 
Adobe Premier program, 302-305 
Advanced Integrated Synthesis System 
sound module, 366-367 
Advanced Moose stack, 405 
Adventures in Musicland program, 


After Dark screen saver, 397-400 

aftertouch data, 20-21 

agents in interFACE, 314 

AIFF. See Audio Interchange File Format 

AirCraft Music Library, 386-387 

Alchemy sample-editing software, 230-241 

Algorithm stack (HyperMIDI), 143-144 

aliasing, 172-173 

amplitude, 170-171 

with Alchemy, 234-235 
with Voice Impact Pro, 192 
analog audio, 169 

Analog Interface (Sound Tools), 210 
analog-to-digital (A/D) converters, 171, 343 

with Adobe Premier, 302 
with Animation Works, 306-309 
with interFACE, 314-321 
with MacroMind Director, 286, 289-294 
with MediaMaker, 301-305 
with Paracomp Magic, 329 
with PROmotion, 333-338 
with QuickTime, 346 
with SOUNDtraK, 142 
Animation Works program, 306-309 

anti-aliasing filters, 173 
Apple MIDI Driver, 350 
Apple MIDI Interface, 368 
Arrange window 
with Cubase, 83 

with Cubase Audio, 267-268, 270 
Arrangement window (EZ Vision), 100 
articulation, 69 
assembling sequences, 43 
Associated Production Music library, 387 
At Your Service (interFACE), 320-321 
Attached Patch feature (Galaxy Plus 
Editors), 159 

Audible Feedback option (EZ Vision), 99 

for multimedia presentations (See 
multimedia, sound for) 
sources of, 13-14 (See also libraries) 
for video, 15 

Audio Action library, 387 
Audio Editor window (Cubase Audio), 

Audio Event Maker (CD AudioStack), 

Audio Fade control (Adobe Premier), 305 
Audio Instrument window (Studio Vision), 

Audio Interchange File Format (Audio 
IFF), 186, 196 

Audio Monitor window (Digital 
Performer), 272-273 
audio panes with Studio Vision, 259-261 
Audio Setup dialog box (Audio Trax), 

Audio Trax system, 243-249 
Audio window (Audio Trax), 246-247 
Audioraedia system, 14, 200-210 
with Cubase Audio, 267 
with Digital Performer, 271 


with SampleCell, 212-213, 219-220 
with Studio Vision, 257 
Auto control (Master Tracks Pro 5), 65 
autolocate memories, 250 
automation with Deck, 254-256 
Auto-Return feature (Ballade), 106 


Bach Songbook sequences, 130 
Background Editor (Animation Works), 


Background Rhythm Patterns sequences, 

background sounds, 1 1 
Backwards filter (Adobe Premier), 305 
Ballade sequencing software, 104-109 
Band-in-a-Box program, 122-124 
bandwidth and sampling rate, 172 

with MIDI Quest, 161-162 
with patches, 1 50 

with SampleCell, 213-214, 217-219 
Bargraph display (Cubase), 87 
Barron, Louis and Bebe, 5 
Beep command (HyperCard), 283 
Bender effect (MacRecorder), 182-183 
benshi, 4 

Beyond sequencing software, 73-82 
bidirectional MIDI data flow, 19, 25 
Blend & Mingle command (X-oR), 156 

with CD AudioStack, 312 
with EZ Vision, 100 
Body Electric (HookUp!), 331-332 
Boing sound (HyperCard), 284 
Book of MIDI stack, 145-146 
Bounce To Disk dialog box (Deck), 252 
Bridge display (Beyond), 79 
Bundle window (Galaxy Plus Editors), 

burn-in, screen saver for, 397-400 
Button Info dialog box (MediaTracks), 325 
buttons with HyperCard, 282 
buyouts, 385-386 


cables for MIDI, 18 

Capitol Production Music library, 387-388 
cards with HyperCard, 282 
Cartoon Carnival, 402-403 
Cast window (MacroMind Director), 

CA-30 sound module, 360-362 
CD Audio Controller (CD AudioStack), 

CD Audio Editor window (MediaMaker), 

CD AudioStack program, 311-314 
CD players (MacroMind Director), 294 
CD-ROM libraries, 392-394 
with CD AudioStack, 311-314 
for music, 14 

with SampleCell, 212-213 
for voices, 1 1 

cells in MacroMind Director, 290-291 

in Animation Works, 306 
in PROmotion, 333 
chaining modules, 26-27 
Change Duration dialog box (Performer), 

Change Filter feature (Master Tracks Pro 
5), 72 

Change menu (Master Tracks Pro 5), 72 
Change Velocity dialog box (Performer), 

with DeluxeRecorder, 109 
with MacRecorder, 181 
with MacroMind Director, 291 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 66-67, 70 
for MIDI, 19-20, 127 
with PROmotion, 336 
with Sound Manager, 342-343 
vs. tracks, 37-38 
Chaplin, Charlie, 4 

Choose a Picture window (Talking Moose), 

Choose command (MIDI Quest), 162-163 
Chord display (Cubase), 88 


Chord Embellishment option 
(Band-in-a-Box), 123 
Chorus effect (Deck), 251 
Chromatic harmonizing (Beyond), 81 
Chunks window (Performer), 53 
circuits, sample-and-hold, 170-171, 174 
Clair, Rcn6, 5 

Click button (Master Tracks Pro 5), 65 
Clip Tunes CD-ROM, 393 
clipping, 179-180 

with Adobe Premier, 302-305 
with MediaTracks, 322-324 
clock messages, 21 

CM-32L sound module, 127, 354-355 
CM-32P sound module, 355 
CM-64 sound module, 127, 355-356 
CM-300 sound module, 358-359 
CM-500 sound module, 359-360 
Coarticulated actors (interFACE), 315 
Collection window (MediaMaker), 
295-296, 300 


with Audiomedia, 203 
with EZ Vision, 98 
with Vision, 56 

with Performer, 46 
with SOUNDtraK, 139 
Compact command 

with Digital Performer, 274 
with Studio Vision, 265 
compact discs (CDs) 
libraries on, 386-392 
sampling rates for, 173 
compact speakers, 371-372 
Compare Patches command (X-oR), 156 
Component Manager (QuickTime), 347 
composers, working with, 379-380, 

with MIDI, 24 
with Performer, 52-53 
compound slides, 287-288 


with Adobe Premier, 302 
with Audiomedia, 207-208 
with Deck, 256-257 
with MacRecorder, 178 
with Paracomp Magic, 329 
with PROmotion, 338 
with QuickTime, 347 
with Sound Designer II, 230 
with Sound Manager, 343 
with Voice Impact Pro, 189, 192 
Connect-the-Dots option (Voice Impact 
Pro), 193-194 

connections for MIDI, 18-19 
Console window (DeluxeRecorder), 109 
Consolidate command (Studio Vision), 265 
Consolidated Controls Panel 
with Digital Performer, 272 
with Performer, 49 

Constrained Random option (Galaxy Plus 
Editors), 161 

Construction window (Adobe Premier), 

continuous data, 20-21, 76-77 
control bars and windows, 38 
with DeluxeRecorder, 109 
with interFACE, 316 
with Paracomp Magic, 326 
with Performer, 47, 49 
with Studio Vision, 257 
with Studio/ 1, 332 
with Vision, 57-58 
controller windows 
with Cubase, 89 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 70 
copyright clearances, 385-386 
Costume palette (Paracomp Magic), 326 
Count In button (Master Tracks Pro 5), 65 
counter displays, 38-39 
with Beyond, 80 
with Performer, 48-49 
with SOUNDtraK, 141 
with Vision, 58 

Creative Support Services librar>', 388 


crossfade feature 

with Alchemy, 234, 238 
with Audiomedia, 204 
with Sound Designer II, 229 
CS-10 speakers, 371-372 
Cubase Audio system, 267-271 
Cubase sequencing software, 82-93 
cues and cue sheets 
with Beyond, 79 
for composers, 382 
with Paracomp Magic, 327-329 
with PROmotion, 338 
Cursor Locator icons (Alchemy), 233 


DAT (digital audiotape). See digital audio 
Data Base feature (MIDI Quest), 164 
Deck system, 249-257 
delay effects 
with Deck, 251 
with Voice Impact Pro, 192 
Delete File conunand (Studio Vision), 265 
DeluxeRecorder sequencing software, 

demos for ed/lib programs, 1 5 1 
desktop speakers, 24 
destructive editing, 203-204 
Device menu (Master Tracks Pro 5), 66 
DeWolfe Music Library, 388 
Digidesign library, 220-221, 393 
digital audio, 169-170 
Audiomedia, 200-210 
high resolution, 199 
with MacRecorder, 177-188 
with MIDI systems 
Audio Trax, 243-249 
Cubase Audio, 267-27 1 
Deck, 249-257 
Digital Performer, 271-278 
Studio Vision, 257-267 

Mitshiba StereoRecorder, 196-197 
playing back, 1 74- 1 7 5 
quantization for, 1 7 1 
recording, 171-174 
Sound Tools, 210-21 1 
Voice Impact Pro, 188-196 
Digital EQ dialog box (Alchemy), 239-240 
Digital Interface (Sound Tools), 210 
Digital Performer system, 271-278 
digital signal processing (DSP), 189, 225 
Digital Sound Series library, 394 
Digital Waveboard (Digital Performer), 

digital-io-analog (D/ A) converters, 174, 342 
DIN connectors, 19 
Display List window (Beyond), 77-78 
Display Options command (MacRecorder), 

Display Scale icon 

with Audiomedia, 203 
with Sound Designer II, 227-229 

from clipping, 179-180 
from quantization, 171 
and sampling rate, 172 
Distributed Audio Networks (Alchemy), 

downsampling with MacRecorder, 178 
Drawing window (MediaTracks), 325 
Dressing Room window (interFACE), 


Apple Midi Driver, 350 
for ed/lib programs, 150-151 
with Galaxy Plus Editors, 161 
with MIDI Quest, 161, 164-165 
with X-oR, 156 

drum machines and sequences, 31-32, 
88-89, 124 

DTP & Multimedia CD sequences, 130 
duration of notes, 40 
dynamic data with QuickTime, 345 
dynamic range, 1 7 1 



Easy Configuration feature (Galaxy Plus 
Editors), 157 


with Adobe Premier, 305 
with MacRecorder, 181 
with X-oR, 154 
editing and edit windows 

with Animation Works, 306-307 
with Ballade, 108 
with Beyond, 75, 80 
with Cubase, 86-88, 90 
with Cubase Audio, 269-270 
with DeluxeRecorder, 111-113 
destructive and nondestructive, 203-204 
with Encore, 1 14 
with EZ Vision, 98-99 
with MediaMaker, 297-301 
with Performer, 52 
with PROmotion, 337 
with SampleCell, 213-219 
with sequencers, 40 
with SOUNDtraK, 140-142 
with Voice Impact Pro, 190-191, 196 
editor/librarians, 149-151 

Galaxy Plus Editors, 97, 156-161 
MIDI Quest, 161-165 
X-oR, 152-156 
ed/libs. See editor/librarians 

Adventures in Musicland for, 405-408 
sound effects for, 12 
speech synthesizers for, 1 1 
Effects menu (Deck), 25 1 
elapsed time. See also SMPTE timecode 
with Deck, 250 
with DeluxeRecorder, 1 10 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 65 
with Performer, 47-48 
Electric Mixer tool (Kid Pix), 401 
elements with MediaMaker, 295-299 
E-mu sound modules, 362-364 
Encore sequencing software, 113-115 

envelope effects and windows 
with Alchemy, 235 
with Galaxy Plus Editors, 160 
with MacRecorder, 182 
with SampleCell, 219 
with X-oR, 155 

E-oR Profile Development System, 156 
EQ with Deck, 251, 257 
Eraser tool (Master Tracks Pro 5), 71 
events and event list windows, 41 
with CD AudioStack, 312-314 
with Cubase, 86 

with Digital Performer, 271, 274-275 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 69 
with Performer, 49, 51 
with Studio Vision, 261-262, 264 
with Vision, 62-63 

Expand SubSections function (Beyond), 79 
expanding MIDI systems, 26-30 
Export card (SOUNDtraK), 142 
Expression Images (interFACE), 315-317, 

Extended actors (interFACE), 315 
external commands and functions for 
HyperCard. See XCMDs and 
external sounds 

with MacroMind Director, 291-292 
with MediaMaker, 299-301 
EZ Vision sequencing software, 97-101 


faders and fade effects, 29-30 
with Adobe Premier, 305 
with Alchemy, 234, 238 
with Audiomedia, 204 
with Ballade, 106-107 
with Beyond, 81 
with Cubase, 90 
with Deck, 250-252, 254 
with EZ Vision, 101 
with MacRecorder, 182 


with MacroMind Director, 287-288 
with Performer, 55 
with SampleCell, 217 
with Sound Designer II, 229-230 
with SOUNDtraK, 140-141 
with Studio Vision, 264-265 
with Vision, 62-64 
with Voice Impact Pro, 192 
Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) display 
with Alchemy, 238 
with Audiomedia, 207 
with Sound Designer II, 230 
feedback with Vision, 62 
FFT display. See Fast Fourier Transform 

File Management window (Studio Vision), 

File window 

with Studio Vision, 257 
with Vision, 59 

films. See also animation; movies 
aliasing in, 173 
early, 4-5 

with Adobe Premier, 305 
with Alchemy, 238 
with Deck, 252 
low-pass, 173-174 
with MacRecorder, 182-183 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 69, 72 
with Performer, 50 
with Sound Designer II, 229 
with Voice Impact Pro, 192 
Find command (X-oR), 153-154 
Fish! screen saver module, 398 
Flanger effect (MacRecorder), 181 
Flute sound (HyperCard), 284 
Flying Toaster screen saver module, 398 
FM (frequency modulation) synthesis, 22, 
181, 235 

Forbidden Plarm, 5 

frequency and frequency response, 170, 

frequency modulation (FM) synthesis, 22, 
181, 235 

Frequency profiles (Alchemy), 236 
Functions bar (Cubase), 85 


Gain command (Audio Trax), 246-247 
Galaxy Plus Editors, 97, 156-161 
Gate button (SampleCell), 218 
General Find dialog box (Galaxy Plus 
Editors), 157-158 
General MIDI Standard, 125-129 
generated sequences, 60 
genlocking process, 381 
Ghost Notes window (Master Tracks Pro 
5), 70 

graphic display windows, 41-42 

with Digital Performer, 271, 275-276 
with Performer, 50-52 
with Studio Vision, 259-261, 264 
with Vision, 58, 60-61 
Graphic EQ feature 

with Audiomedia, 206-207 
with Sound Designer II, 229 
Greytsounds library, 221 
Grid Edit window (Cubase), 86-88 
Group Tracks (Cubase), 84 
Guess Durations command (Encore), 115 



for HyperCard, 137-138 
MIDI interfaces, 367-370 
sound modules, 353-367 
speakers, 371-375 
harmonic distortion, 172 
Harmonic Spectrum Display window 
(Alchemy), 238-239 
harmonizing with Beyond, 81 
Harpsichord sound (HyperCard), 284 
Health Watch Service Panel (interFACE), 

Hitchcock, Alfred, 5 


Hollywood Film Music Library, 388-389 
Holophonic Sound Effects library, 392 
HookUp! program, 330-332 
Hum Removal function (Deck), 252 
humanize function, 40 
HyperAnimation (interFACE), 314 
HyperCard stacks 

with ADDmotion II, 338 
with Animation Works, 308-309 
with Audiomedia, 209-210 
Book of MIDI for, 145-146 
with CD AudioStack, 311-312 
hardware and software for, 137-138 
HyperMIDI for, 143-145 
HyperSound, 186-188 
with interFACE, 320 
with MacroMind Director, 294 
with MediaTracks, 325 
for sound, 282-286 
for Sound Clips library, 393 
SOUNDtraK for, 138-142 
and SuperCard, 309-31 1 
with Talking Moose, 405 
with Voice Impact Pro, 196 
for wind chimes, 12-13 
HyperFEX library, 392 
HyperMIDI software, 143-145 
HyperSound stack, 178, 186-188 
HyperTalk language, 283 

I-beam tool 

with EZ Vision, 99 
with Vision, 61 
Image Compression Manager 
(QuickTime), 347 
Import command 

with MacroMind Director, 291 
with Paracomp Magic, 328 
Insert Event button (Vision), 62-63 
Insert Measures command (Audio Trax), 

Instrument format (MacRecorder), 186 

Instrument Patch Map (General MIDI), 

instruments and instrument windows 
with Beyond, 81-82 
with Proteus/ 1, 362 
with SampleCell, 214 
with Studio Vision, 260 
with Vision, 57 

Intelligent Arranger sound module, 

Intelligent harmonizing (Beyond), 81 
Interactive Phrase Synthesizer (Cubase), 91 
interFACE program, 314-321 
interfaces for MIDI, 21, 27-28, 367-370 
internal sounds with MacroMind Director, 

Interpreter module (Cubase), 91 
IPS (Cubase), 91 


Jazz Swing style (Band-in-a-Box), 123 
Jazz Through MIDI sequences, 121 
Jump feature (X-oR), 155 


Key Edit window 
with Cubase, 85-86 
with Cubase Audio, 270 
Key Groups (SampleCell), 215-216 
Key Images (interFACE), 316 
Key Pressure window (Master Tracks Pro 
5), 70 

Key Strummer stack (HyperMIDI), 
keyboards, 22 

with Master Tracks Pro 5, 69 
for MIDI, 25-26 
transposing, with Performer, 54 
Kid Pix program, 400-402 
Killer Tracks Multimedia Library, 389 
Korg sound modules, 366-367 



LA (linear arithmetic) synthesis, 22 
labels with SOUNDtraK, 139 
layback process, 383 
layering, 17 

with CD AudioStack, 311-314 

on CD-ROM, 392-394 

on compaa disc, 386-392 

and copyright clearances, 385-386 

with MIDI Quest, 162 

for music, 14, 129-133, 378-379 

with SampleCell, 212-213, 220-222 

for sound effects, 13, 386, 393-394 

for videotape, 378-379 

for voices, 11 

with X-oR, 153 

lifespans in Paracomp Magic, 327 
line mixers, 28 

linear arithmetic (LA) s)mthesis, 22 
linear-style sequence structuring, 43 
Lingo language, 286, 291, 294-295 

with HyperCard, 282 
with Paracomp Magic, 329 
with Studio Vision, 260 
List windows 

with Studio Vision, 264 
with Vision, 58, 62-63 
Load a Sound dialog box (Studio/ 1), 332 
Lock Audio to Tape option (Studio Vision), 

Logical Edit display (Cubase), 90 
Logo module (After Dark), 399 
longitudinal time code (LTC), 380 

with Alchemy, 237-238 
with Beyond, 81 
with Deck, 253-254 
with MacRecorder, 184 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 66 
with MediaMaker, 298, 300 
with Sound Designer II, 227-229 
with Vision, 58 

low-pass filters, 173-174 

LTC (longitudinal time code), 380 

Lucasfilm Sound Effects library, 391 


Mac Sound Editor window (MediaMaker), 
297-299, 301 

MACE (Macintosh Audio Compression 
and Expansion), 343 

with interFACE, 316-318 
with MacroMind Director, 294 
with Talking Moose, 403-404 
Macintosh Audio Compression and 
Expansion (MACE), 343 
MacNexus MIDI interface, 368 
MacProieus sound module, 13, 363 
MacRecorder, 14, 177-178 
with Audio Trax, 244 
HyperSound stack in, 186-188 
with interFACE, 318-319 
with MacroMind Director, 288 
resolution of, 171, 178 
SoundEdit application in, 179-186 
MacroMind Director, 286 
Overview part of, 286-289 
Studio part of, 289-295 
MacSpeaker, 373-374 
Mac-to-Sampler icon (Sound Designer II), 

Magnifying Glass tool (Cubase Audio), 

Manhattan Production Music librarj', 389 
mapping with samplers, 30 
Marquee tool 

with EZ Vision, 99 
with Vision, 61 

Master Tracks Pro 5 sequencing software, 

Matrix Modulation window (SampleCell), 

MA-12C speakers, 372-373 
McGill University library, 221-222 


Media Controller (PROmolion), 333-334 
MediaMaker program, 295-301 
MediaTracks program, 322-325 

in HyperCard, 285 
in music sequences, 130 
Melody Mixup game (Adventures in 
Musicland), 406-407 


for Audiomedia, 200 
for Digital Performer, 27 1 
for HyperCard, 285 
for MacRecorder, 178 
for music sequences, 1 19 
for SampleCell, 212 
for samplers, 31 
for speech synthesizers, 10 
for SuperCard, 310-311 
and videotape, 377 
Merge command (Audiomedia), 205 
messages with MIDI, 20-21, 29 
Meter display (Beyond), 79 
Metro Music Productions library, 389-390 
metronome options, 39 
with Cubase, 84 
with Deck, 253 
with Performer, 48-49 
micons with MediaMaker, 296 
microphones, 343-345 
MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital 
Interface), 18 
channels for, 19-20, 127 
connections for, 18-19 
with digital audio 
Audio Trax, 243-249 
Cubase Audio, 267-271 
Deck, 249-257 
Digital Performer, 271-278 
Studio Vision, 257-267 
expanding, 26-30 
General MIDI Standard, 125-129 
with HyperCard (See HyperCard stacks) 
interfaces for, 21, 27-28, 367-370 
keyboard controllers for, 25-26 
and Macintosh, 21 

with MacroMind Director, 293 
messages with, 20-21, 29 
mixers with, 28-30 
modes for, 20 

music sequences for (See music and mi 
ports for, 18-19, 350 
and samplers, 30-32 
sound modules for, 14, 22 
speakers for, 23-24 
systems for, 24-25 
with Vision, 56 

MIDI Hits sequences, 130-131 
MIDI Inn sequences, 131 
MIDI Input module (Cubase), 91 
MIDI Interface for the Mac, 368 
MIDI Jukebox sequences, 131 
MIDI keyboards 

with DeluxeRecorder, 110-111 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 69 
with Sound Designer II, 230 
MIDI Manager, 349-351 
MIDI Metronome option (Deck), 253 
MIDI monitors and windows 
with Audiomedia, 205 
with Beyond, 77 
with Cubase, 91-92 
with EZ Vision, 98 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 70 
with MIDI Quest, 163-164 
with Performer, 55-56 
with Sound Designer II, 230 
MIDI 1.0 Specification, 17-18 
MIDI Quest editor/librarian, 161-165 
MIDI System Exclusive (sys/ex) 
commands, 149-150 

MIDI Thru channels and connectors, 18, 

MIDI Time Piece interface, 27, 370 
MIDI Translator interface, 368 
MIDIclips sequences, 131-132, 142 
MIDIFace LX interface, 368 
MIDIFile Tunes sequences, 132 
MIDIKeys feature (Vision), 63-64 
Milestone, Lewis, 5 


Misc window (SampleCell), 217 
Alitshiba StereoRecorder system, 196-197 
mixer states, 254, 256 
mixing and mixer windows 
with Audio Trax, 248-249 
with Audiomedia, 206 
with Ballade, 106-107 
with Deck, 252, 254, 256 
with Digital Performer, 277 
with EZ Vision, 101 
with MacRecorder, 185-186 
with MIDI, 28-30 
with MIDI Quest, 161-163 
with Performer, 55 
with Sound Designer II, 230 
with Voice Impact Pro, 191 
ModDelay effect (Deck), 251 
modes for MIDI, 20 

Modulation window (Master Tracks Pro 5), 

Mogrify button (Vision), 61-62 
Monitor window (X-oR), 152 
Mono mode (MIDI), 20 
Moose Goes Hyper stack, 405 
Moose Proof desk accessory (Talking 
Moose), 404 

More After Dark screen saver, 397 
MouseKeys window (Galaxy Plus Editors), 

MousePlay feature (X-oR), 154 
Movie Editor window (Animation Works), 

Movie Toolbox (QuickTime), 347 
movies. See also animation; films 
aliasing in, 173 
early, 4-5 

MT Player application, 322 
MTPlay stack, 325 
MT-32 sound module, 127, 129, 355 
Multi-Channel Record option (Master 
Tracks Pro 5), 67 

multimedia, sound for, 1,9. See also 
Adobe Premier, 302-305 
Animation Works, 306-309 

CD AudioStack, 311-314 
HookUp!, 330-332 
HyperCard, 282-286 
interFACE, 314-321 
MacroMind Direaor, 286-295 
MediaMaker, 295-301 
MediaTracks, 322-325 
Paracomp Magic, 326-330 
PROmotion, 333-338 
Studio/ 1, 332-333 
SuperCard, 309-311 
Multimedia Artists Sequences, 131 
Multimedia DeskTop Sounds library, 394 
MultiMedia HANDisc sequences, 132 
Multiple Take mode (Beyond), 81 
multiple-track displays in EZ Vision, 

MultiRecord mode (Digital Performer), 

multisamples, 211 
raultitimbral capability, 22-23 
Multitrack page (Beyond), 74 
Multi-Track Record option (Master Tracks 
Pro 5), 67 

Mus-Art Productions sequences, 132 
music and music sequences, 119 
background, 120-122 
Band-in-a-Box, 122-124 
cards for, 13 
drums, 124 

General MIDI, 125-129 
libraries for, 14, 129-133, 378-379 
original, 379-380, 382-383 
in presentations, 13-14 
with sound effects, 2-3 
Music Match game (Adventures in 
Musicland), 407 

Musical Instrument Digital Interface. See 


needle-drop fees, 386 
Network Music library, 390 


noise and noise gates, 171 
with Audio Trax, 247 
with MacRecorder, 180 
with Studio Vision, 262 
nondestructive editing, 203-204 
Normalize commands 
with Audio Trax, 246 
with Deck, 252 

Notation Editing window (Performer), 52 
notation windows, 42-43 
Note Editor window (Beyond), 75, 80 
note events and messages, 20, 41 
note scrubbing with Vision, 62 
note-entry mode (Master Tracks Pro 5), 69 
Numbered Marker feature 
with Audiomedia, 203 
with Sound Designer II, 227 
Nyquist theorem, 172-173 


Olduvai Corporation library, 393 
Omni mode (MIDI), 20 
Omnimusic library, 390 
OMS (Opcode MIDI System), 56, 156-157 
OMS Setup procedure (Galaxy Plus 
Editors), 157 

Opcode MIDI System (OMS), 56, 156-157 
Open Instrument command (SampleCell), 

Open Special command (Alchemy), 

Optical Media International library, 394 
Output module (Cubase), 92 
output sample-and-hold circuits, 174 
Overview display (Audiomedia), 202 
Overview part and window (MacroMind 
Director), 286-289 


Paint Brush tool (Cubase), 86-87 

Paint palette (PROmotion), 334 

Paint window (MacroMind Director), 289 

Paracomp Magic program, 326-330 
Parametric EQ feature (Deck), 251 
Parts (Cubase), 83-85, 88 
Passport Designs, Inc. library, 394 
Paste Audio From command (Audio Trax), 

Patch Talk language, 161 
PatchBay application, 350 
patches and patch windows 
with ed/lib programs, 150 
with Galaxy Plus Editors, 158-159 
with MIDI Quest, 164 
with Vision, 59 
withX-oR, 155-156 

with Animation Works, 306 
with PROmotion, 333 
Pattern button (Sound Designer II), 230 
pattern-song sequence structuring, 43 
PC-200 sound module, 360 
Pencil tools and icons 
with Alchemy, 236 
with Audiomedia, 203 
with Beyond, 75, 80 
with Cubase, 86-87 
with EZ Vision, 100 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 69, 71 
with Sound Designer II, 227 
with Vision, 62 
with Voice Impact Pro, 191 
Percussion Key Map (General MIDI), 127, 

Performance window (X-oR), 152 
Performer sequencing software, 45-56 
Phase Input module (Cubase), 91 

with interFACE, 315, 320 
with Talking Moose, 404 
Phonetic/Timing Value Strings 
(interFACE), 319 
piano-roll display, 41-42 
picons with MediaMaker, 295-297 
PICS Player (After Dark), 399 
Picture Frame module (After Dark), 399 
Picture Perfect game (Adventures in 
Musicland), 406 

Ping Pong effect (MacRecorder), 181 
pitch and pitch bend, 21 
with Alchemy, 240-241 
with Beyond, 76 
with HyperCard, 284 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 70-71 
with SampleCell, 217 
Play command (SuperCard), 310 
Play Selected option (Studio Vision), 263 
Playback Speed dialog box (MediaTracks), 

player pianos, 35-36 
Player window (Animation Works), 307 
Playlist window (Audiomedia), 204-205 
Poly mode (MIDI), 20 
polyphony, 23, 134 
ports, MIDI, 18-19, 350 
Post Record dialog box (DeluxeRecorder), 

posters with QuickTime, 346-347 
Powered Partner 570 speaker, 374-375 
Preferences dialog box 

with MediaMaker, 299-301 
with Talking Moose, 403-404 
prerecorded sounds. See libraries 
Presentation window (MediaTracks), 

presentations, 9. See also multimedia, 
sound for 
music in, 13-14 
sound effects in, 11-13 
voice in, 10-11 

presequenced MIDI music. See music and 
music sequences 


with ed/lib programs, 1 50 
with Proteus/ 1, 362-363 
pressure data, 20-21 

with QuickTime, 347 
with SOUNDtraK, 140 
priorities with PROmotion, 336 
Pro 5. See Master Tracks Pro 5 
Process icons (Alchemy), 233 
production music. See libraries 
Professional, The, 388 

Professional Analog Interface (Sound 
Tools), 210 

Profile Development System, 156 
Profiles (X-oR), 152 
program change messages, 21 
Program Number feature (Master Tracks 
Pro 5), 66-67 

Program setting (Vision), 58-59 
project studios, 380 
projects and project windows 
with Adobe Premier, 302-304 
with SOUNDtraK, 142 
with SuperCard, 310 
PROmotion program, 333-338 
props with PROmotion, 333 
Prosonus library, 222 
Proteus sound modules, 31, 362-364 
protocols, 18 


quantization, 171 
with Ballade, 108 
with Beyond, 81 
with Encore, 1 13 
with EZ Vision, 98 
with Performer, 53-54 
with sequencers, 40 
with Studio Vision, 263 
with Vision, 60, 62 
Queue mode (Vision), 59 
QuickPICS program (Paracomp Magic), 

QuickTime program, 302, 305, 345-349 
QuikTunes sequences, 132-133 


radio, 3 

randomize features 
with After Dark, 399 
with X-oR, 156 

RAVE command (interFACE), 319 


real-time recording, 39 
RECITE command (interFACE), 318-320 
Record Mode button (Master Tracks Pro 
5), 65 

Record Monitors 

with Cubase Audio, 268-269 
with Studio Vision, 258-260 
Record Sound dialog box (MediaTracks), 

Recording Workshop button (Audiomedia), 

Redmon, Nigel, 143 
regions, 274 

Reminder Service Panel (interFACE), 321 
Remote Controls window (Performer), 

Replacement mode (Vision), 58 
Resample command (Voice Impact Pro), 


of Alchemy, 231 
of Audiomedia, 171, 200 
of Ballade, 104, 108 
of Beyond, 80 
of DeluxeRecorder, 109 
of Encore, 114 
of EZ Vision, 97 
of MacRecorder, 171, 178 
of Master Tracks Pro 5, 64 
of MIDI Manager, 349 
of Performer, 48 
of SampleCell, 212 
of sequencers, 38-39 
ofTrax, 102 
of Vision, 56, 60 
of Voice Impact Pro, 189 
Retain command (Studio Vision), 261 
Reverb effect (MacRecorder), 183 
reverse feature 

with Adobe Premier, 305 
with Digital Performer, 277 
with Voice Impact Pro, 192 
Rhythm Track editor (Ballade), 108 

sound modules by, 107, 127, 354-363 
speakers by, 371-373 


sample-and-hold circuits, 170-171, 174 
SampleCell system, 212 
editor for, 213-219 
sampling with, 219-220 
sounds for, 220-222 
sample-editing software, 225 
Alchemy, 230-241 
Sound Designer II, 226-230 
sample-playback modules, 31 
samplers, 21 1 

and MIDI, 30-32 
SampleCell, 212-222 
sampling rates, 171-174 
with Alchemy, 231 
with Audiomedia, 200, 205 
with Voice Impact Pro, 189 
SC-55 Sound Canvas sound module, 127, 
129, 356-357 

SC- 155 Sound Canvas sound module, 

Scale Paste command (DeluxeRecorder), 


scenes in Paracomp Magic, 326-329 
Scissors tool (Cubase), 84 
score viewing and editing 
with Ballade, 105-106, 108 
with Cubase, 88 
with Cubase Audio, 270 
with MacroMind Director, 290, 292 
screen savers, 397-400 
ScreenKeys feature (X-oR), 153-154 
ScreenRecorder (MediaTracks), 322 

with HyperCard, 283-284 
with MacroMind Director, 291, 294-295 
Scroll window (Voice Impaa Pro), 191 
scrubbing features 
with Cubase, 84 
with EZ Vision, 99 
with Sound Designer II, 230 
with Vision, 62 

with Galaxy Plus Editors, 158-159 
with SOUNDtraK, 138-139 


Sections window (Beyond), 77-78 

Select a Sound dialog box (PROmotion), 

Selection icons 

with Audiomedia, 203 
with Sound Designer II, 227 

Separate command (Studio Vision), 

sequencers. See also sequencing software 
editing with, 40 
event list windows for, 41 
graphic display windows for, 41-42 
with MediaMaker, 296 
moving around with, 38-39 
notation windows for, 42-43 
parts of, 37-40 
and player pianos, 35-36 
structuring by, 43 

sequences, viewing and editing. See also 
music and music sequences 
with Galaxy Plus Editors, 160 
with MediaMaker, 295-298, 300-301 
with Studio Vision, 257 
with Vision, 58-60 

sequencing software. See also sequencers 
Ballade, 104-109 
Beyond, 73-82 
Cubase, 82-93 
DeluxeRecorder, 1 09- 1 1 3 
Encore, 113-115 
EZ Vision, 97-101 
Master Tracks Pro 5, 64-73 
Performer, 45-56 
Trax, 101-104 
Vision, 56-64 

Set Colors command (Audiomedia), 203 

Set Pitches command (MacRecorder), 184 

Shade Two option (Galaxy Plus Editors), 

Show Editing option (Voice Impact Pro), 

Show Velocity feature (Master Tracks Pro 
5), 67-68 

ShufRer option (Galaxy Plus Editors), 161 

Shuttle button (EZ Vision), 99-100 

silent movies, 4 

sliders. See faders and fade effects 

Smith, Dave, 17 


with Alchemy, 237 
with Audiomedia, 205 
with MacRecorder, 181 
with Voice Impact Pro, 192 
SMPTE timecode, 15, 27 
with Ballade, 104, 107, 109 
with Beyond, 80 
with Cubase Audio, 267 
with Deck, 250 

with Digital Performer, 274, 277 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 65 
with Performer, 47-48 
with SOUNDtraK, 141-142 
with Studio Vision, 266 
on videotape, 380-382 
Snap feature (Cubase Audio), 269 
snapshots, 254-255 

with Audio Trax, 247-248 
from Band-in-a-Box, 122-123 
with Beyond, 8 1 
with EZ Vision, 100 
with MacroMind Director, 293 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 73 
with Performer, 53 
with Trax, 102-103 

Sonic Imaging Control (MacSpeaker), 373 
Sonogram effect (MacRecorder), 184-185 
SoperSound Music Library, 390-391 

for multimedia presentations {See 
multimedia, sound for) 
sources of, 13-14 {See also libraries) 
for video, 15 

Sound Checker feature (MIDI Quest), 163, 

Sound Clips library, 393 
Sound Concentration game (Adventures in 
Musicland), 407-408 
Sound control panel (Sound Manager), 


Sound Designer II system, 211, 220, 
226-230, 266 

Sound Editing window (Voice Impact Pro), 
sound effects, 2-3 
with Kid Pix, 402 
libraries of, 13, 386, 393-394 
with MacroMind Director, 292 
in presentations, 11-13 
for videotape, 383 
Sound Ideas library, 391 
Sound Information dialog box 
(PROmotion), 335-337 
Sound List (Paracomp Magic), 328 
Sound Magic CD-ROM, 394 
Sound Manager, 341-345 
Sound menu (MacroMind Director), 
288-289, 293 

sound modules, 14, 22, 353 
chaining, 26-27 
E-mu, 362-364 
Korg, 366-367 
Roland, 107, 127, 354-363 
Yamaha, 364-366 

Sound Priority slider (SampleCell), 217 
Sound Sync (interFACE), 318 
Sound Tools system, 210-211 
with Digital Performer, 27 1 
with SampleCell, 219-220 
SoundAccess application (Audiomedia), 

Soundbites window (Digital Performer), 

SoundEdit application (MacRecorder), 

SoundEdit format (MacRecorder), 1 86 
Soundfile window (Audiomedia), 202-203 
SoundMan application, 197 
Sound-on-Sound button (Deck), 253-254, 

Sounds file (MacroMind Director), 288 
Sounds Utility (MacroMind Director), 288 
SOUNDtraK stack, 138-142 
Soundtracks for MIDI sequences, 121-122 
Soundwave application (Voice Impact Pro), 

Soundwave format, 196 
sources of sounds, 13-14. See also libraries 
Speaker icon (Sound Designer II), 226, 228 
speakers, 23-24, 371-375 
Speaking Images (interFACE), 315-316, 

Specific Find dialog box (Galaxy Plus 
Editors), 158-159 
Spectrogram effect (MacRecorder), 

spectrum displays 

with Alchemy, 238-239 
with MacRecorder, 179, 184 
with Voice Impact Pro, 192-193 
Speech Sync (interFACE), 318-319 
speech synthesizers, 10-11 
Speed scroll bar (Voice Impaa Pro), 

Splice Mode icon (Alchemy), 237 
Splice transitions (Audiomedia), 204 
Split Channel command (DeluxeRecorder), 

splitting events (Studio Vision), 261-262 
spotting sessions, 382 
SR Convert command 
with Audiomedia, 205 
with Sound Designer II, 230 
stacks. See HyperCard stacks 
Stage windows 

with interFACE, 316-317 
with Paracomp Magic, 326-327 
Standard actors (interFACE), 315 
Standard MIDI Files, 125-126 
with Galaxy Plus Editors, 160 
with MIDI Quest, 163-164 
Step Editor windows 
with Audio Trax, 249 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 67-68, 70-71 
with Trax, 102-103 
step entry, 39 
step recording 

with Ballade, 105, 108-109 
with DeluxeRecorder, 113 
with Encore, 1 14 

with Deck, 25 1 


digital, 196-197 
with EZ Vision, 101 
stills with MediaTracks, 323 
Storyboard windows (Animation Works), 

Strip Charts 

with EZ Vision, 98, 100-101 
with Studio Vision, 260 
with Vision, 62 
Strip Silence feature 

with Digital Performer, 276 
with Studio Vision, 262-263 
striping videotape, 382 
structuring by sequencers, 43 
Studio 5 MIDI interface, 370 
Studio/ 1 program, 332-333 
Studio part (MacroMind Director), 286, 

Studio Plus Two MIDI interface, 369 
Studio Setup window (Vision), 56-57 
Studio 3 MIDI interface, 369 
Studio Vision system, 257-267 
stutter effea (Studio Vision), 261 
StyleMaker feature (Band-in-a-Box), 123 
Subsections (Beyond), 78-79 
Subsequences (Vision), 59 
successive approximation synchronization, 

SuperCard program, 309-311 
SuperEdit program (SuperCard), 310 
SuperTalk language, 310 
Swap Channels effect (MacRecorder), 181 
synchronization, 11-12 
with interFACE, 318-320 
with MediaMaker, 301 
with QuickTime, 347-348 
and videotape, 378, 383 
Sync/Link MIDI interface, 369 
synthesizers, 17 
sys/ex messages, 2 1 
system extensions in Vision, 56 
System IQ feature (After Dark), 399 
system software 

MIDI Manager, 349-351 
QuickTime, 345-349 

Sound Manager, 341-345 
system-exclusive messages, 21 


Talking Moose program, 402-405 
Tap Tempo feature 
with EZ Vision, 100 
with Performer, 55 

Tape Calibration option (Studio Vision), 

Tape Deck Panel (Audiomedia), 201, 203 
Tech Effects library, 392 
television, 5 

with ed/lib programs, 150-151 
with Galaxy Plus Editors, 160-161 
with X-oR, 155-156 
tempo display and effects 
with Beyond, 79 
with EZ Vision, 100 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 66, 71 
with Performer, 55 
with Voice Impact Pro, 192 
Text Markers 

with Audiomedia, 203 
with Sound Designer II, 227 
Text window (MacroMind Director), 294 
TGI 00 sound module, 365-366 
Threshold Bars icon (Alchemy), 234 
through-composed sequence structuring, 

Thru options and channels, 18, 80 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 65 
with Studio Vision, 258 
with Vision, 58 

thumbnails in Adobe Premier, 302 
Tile Windows command (Voice Impact 
Pro), 193 

Time Compression /Expansion window 
with Audiomedia, 207-208 
with Sound Designer II, 230 
time coordinate systems, 348 


time rulers and scales 

with Adobe Premier, 304 
with Alchemy, 239-240 
with Performer, 47 
timecode. See SMPTE timecode 

with MediaMaker, 296 
with Paracomp Magic, 327 
with PROmotion, 336-337 
timing resolution. See resolution 
tone generators 

with MacRecorder, 181 
with MIDI Quest, 164 
with Voice Impact Pro, 193-194 
tool palettes and menus 
with Alchemy, 231-232 
with Animation Works, 307 
with DeluxeRecorder, 112 
with Paracomp Magic, 326 
Trace Envelope icon (Alchemy), 235 
tracks and track windows, 37-38 
with Audio Trax, 244-245 
with Beyond, 74 
with Cubase, 83 
with Cubase Audio, 267 
with DeluxeRecorder, 109, 111 
with Digital Performer, 271-273 
with EZ Vision, 98-99 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 66-67 
with Performer, 46, 49 
with QuickTime, 346 
with SampleCell, 218-219 
with Trax, 102 
Tran Tracks sequences, 133 
Transform MIDI Track dialog box (Deck), 

transition times, 255 
transport windows and controls 
with Audio Trax, 244 
with Ballade, 106 
with Cubase, 84-85 
with Deck, 253 
with DeluxeRecorder, 1 10 
with Master Tracks Pro 5, 64 
with Trax, 103 

transpose function, 40 

Transpose Map command (Performer), 54 

Trax sequencing software, 101-104 

TRF Production Music Libraries, 39 1 

Truncate button (SOUNDtraK), 142 

Trycho Tunes sequences, 133 

27th Dimension library, 392 

260 Instant Drum Patterns sequences, 124 


UART (universal asynchronous 
receiver/transmitter), 367 
universal editor/librarians. See 

Universal Synthesizer Interface, 17 
Use Select command (MIDI Quest), 162 


Valentino Production Music Library, 392 

with Beyond, 75 

with Master Tracks Pro 5, 67-68, 71 
with MIDI, 20-21 
with Performer, 53-54 
with SampleCell, 215-216 
with sequencers, 40 
with Studio Vision, 264 
vertical interval time code (VITC), 

video and videotape 
audio for, 1 5 
with MediaMaker, 299 
music libraries for, 378-379 
original music for, 379-380, 382-383 
pros and cons of, 377-379 
SMPTE timecode on, 380-382 
Videodisc element with MediaMaker, 

View Filter (Performer), 50 

View Memory buttons (Alchemy), 232 

virtual ports with MIDI Manager, 350 


Vision sequencing software, 56-64 
VITC (vertical interval lime code), 


vocals in music sequences, 130 
Voice Impact Pro system, 188-196 
with Audio Trax, 244 
with MacroMind Director, 288 
Soundwave application in, 190-194 
Voice Record application in, 195-196 
voice in presentations, 10-11 
volume messages, 29 

Voyager CD AudioStack program, 311-314 


wagon-wheel effect, 173 

with Alchemy, 232 
with MacRecorder, 179-181 
Wedding Package sequences, 131 
Welles, Orson, 5 
window dubs, 382 
wires with HookUp!, 330-332 
Works Music Productions sequences, 133 


XCMDs (external commands) and XFCNs 
(external flmctions), 285-286 

with Animation Works, 308-309 
with Audiomedia, 209 
with CD AudioStack, 311-312 
with HyperMIDI, 143 
with HyperSound, 188 
with MediaTracks, 325 
with SuperCard, 311 
with Talking Moose, 405 
with Voice Impact Pro, 196 

with MacroMind Director, 294 
with MediaMaker, 299 
X-oR editor/librarian, 152-156 


Yamaha sound modules, 364-366 


zero crossing with Alchemy, 238 
03R/W Synthesis Module, 366-367 

with Alchemy, 232 
with Audiomedia, 202 
with PROmotion, 337 
with Sound Designer II, 227 
with Vision, 60 
with Voice Impact Pro, 196 

Selections from 
The SYBEX Library 


Desktop Publishing with 
Microsoft Word on the 
(Second Edition) 

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William Finzer 
525pp. Ref. 601-4 

The authors have woven a murder mys- 
tery through the text, using the sample 
publications as clues. Explanations of 
page layout, headings, fonts and styles, 
columnar text, and graphics are interwo- 
ven within the mystery theme of this excit- 
ing teaching method. For Version 4.0. 

Encyclopedia Macintosh 
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Deke McClelland 

650pp. Ref. 628-6 

Just what every Mac user needs— a com- 
plete reference to Macintosh concepts 
and tips on system software, hardware, 
applications, and troubleshooting. In- 
stead of chapters, each section is pre- 
sented in A-Z format with user-friendly 
icons leading the way. 

Encyclopedia Macintosh 
Software Instant Reference 
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Deke McClelland 

243pp. Ref.753-3 

Help yourself to complete keyboard short- 
cut charts, menu maps, and tip lists for all 
popular Macintosh applications. This 
handy reference guide is divided into 
functional software categories, including 
painting, drawing, page layout, spread- 
sheets. word processors, and more. 

Introduction to Macintosh 
System 7 
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250pp; Ref. 868-8 

An engaging, plain-language introduction 
to the exciting new Macintosh system, for 
first-time users and upgraders. Step-by- 
step tutorials feature dozens of screen 
illustrations and helpful examples drawn 
from both business and personal comput- 
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programs, printing, customization, special 
accessories, and sharing Information. 

Mastering Adobe Illustrator 

David A. Hoizgang 

330pp. Ref. 463-1 

This text provides a complete introduction 
to Adobe Illustrator, bringing new sophisti- 
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graphics and page design technology. 
Includes a look at PostScript, the page 
composition language used by Illustrator. 

Mastering Microsoft Word on 
the Macintosh 
Michael J. Young 

447pp. Ref. 541-7 

This comprehensive, step-by-step guide 
shows the reader through WORD’S exten- 
sive capabilities, from basic editing to cus- 
tom formats and desktop publishing. 
Keyboard and mouse Instructions and 
practice exercises are included. For 
Release 4.0. 

Mastering PageMaker 4 on the 


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421pp. Ref.433-X 

A complete introduction to desktop 
publishing— from planning to printing— 
with emphasis on business projects. 
Explore the tools, concepts and tech- 
niques of page design, while learning to 
use PageMaker. Practical examples 
include newsletters, forms, books, man- 
uals, logos, and more. 

Mastering Ready, Set, Go! 

David A. Kater 

482pp. Ref. 536-0 

This hands-on introduction to the popular 
desktop publishing package for the Mac- 
intosh allows readers to produce 
professional-looking reports, brochures, 
and flyers. Written for Version 4. this title 
has been endorsed by Letraset, the 
Ready, Sot, Go! software publisher. 

PageMaker 4.0 Macintosh 
Version Instant Reference 
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120pp. Ref. 788-6 

Here’s a concise, plain-language refer- 
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PageMaker 4.0 features and commands. 
Entries are organized by function- 
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exact keystrokes, options, and cross- 
references, and instructions for all essen- 
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Up & Running with the Mac 

Tom Cuthbertson 

160pp: Ref. 881-5 

A fast, breezy introduction to computing 
with the Mac Classic. In just 20 steps, you 
get the fundamental information you need— 
without the details you don’t. Each step 
takes only 15 minutes to an hour to com- 
plete, making this book a real timesaver. 

Up & Running with Macintosh 
System 7 
Craig Danuioff 

140pp: Ref. 1000-2 

Learn the new Mac System 7 in record 
time. This 20-step tutorial Is perfect for 
computer-literate users who are new to 
System 7. Each concise step takes no 
more than 15 minutes to an hour to com- 
plete, and provides needed skills without 
unnecessary detail. 

Up & Running with PageMaker 
on the Macintosh 
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134pp. Ref. 695-2 

Ideal for computer-literate users who 
need to learn PageMaker fast. In just 
twenty steps, readers learn to import text, 
format characters and paragraphs, create 
graphics, use style sheets, work with 
color, and more. 

Up & Running with Norton 
Utilities on the Macintosh 
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146pp. Ref. 823-8 

In just 20 lessons, you can be up and ajn- 
ning with Norton Utilities for the Macintosh. 
You’ll soon learn to retrieve accidentally 
erased files, reconstruct damaged files, find 
"lost files," unfoimat accidentally formatted 
disks, and make your system work faster. 

Using the Macintosh 
Toolbox with C 
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Jim Takatsuka 
525pp. Ref. 572-7 

Learn to program with the latest versions 
of Macintosh Toolbox using this clear and 
succinct introduction. This popular title 
has been revised and expanded to 
include dozens of new programming 
examples for windows, menus, controls, 
alert boxes, and disk I/O. Includes hier- 
archical file system, Lightspeed C, 
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The ABC's of Microsoft Word 
(Third Edition) 

Alan R. Neibauer 

461pp. Ref. 604-9 

This is for the novice WORD user who 
wants to begin producing documents in 
the shortest time possible. Each chapter 
has short, easy-to-follow lessons for both 
keyboard and mouse, including all the 
basic editing, formatting and printing 
functions. Version 5.0. 

The ABC's of Microsoft Word 
for Windows 
Alan R. Neibauer 

334pp. Ref. 784-6 

Designed for beginning Word for Win- 
dows users, as well as for experienced 
Word users who are changing from DOS 
to the Windows version. Covers every- 
thing from typing, saving, and printing 
your first document, to creating tables, 
equations, and graphics. 

The ABC's of WordPerfect 5 

Alan R. Neibauer 

283pp. Ref. 504-2 

This introduction explains the basics of 
desktop publishing with WordPerfect 5: 
editing, layout, formatting, printing, sort- 
ing. merging, and more. Readers are 
shown how to use WordPerfect 5’s new 
features to produce great-looking reports. 

The ABC's of WordPerfect 5.1 
for Windows 
Alan R. Neibauer 

350pp; Ref. 803-3 

This highly praised beginner's tutorial is 
now In a special new edition for Word- 
Perfect 5.1 for Windows— featuring WYSI- 
WYG graphics, font preview, the button 
bar, and more. It covers all the essentials 
of word processing, from basic editing to 
simple desktop publishing, in short, easy- 
to-follow lessons. Suitable for first-time 
computer users. 

The ABC's of WordPerfect 5.1 

Alan R. Neibauer 

352pp. Ref. 672-3 

Neibauer’s delightful writing style makes 
this clear tutorial an especially effective 
learning tool. Learn all about 5.1’s new 
drop-down menus and mouse capabil- 
ities that reduce the tedious memorization 
of function keys. 

The Complete Guide 
to MultiMate 
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208pp. Ref. 229-9 

This step-by-step tutorial is also an excel- 
lent reference guide to MultiMate features 
and uses. Topics include search/replace, 
library and merge functions, repaglna- 
tion, document defaults and more. 

Encyclopedia WordPerfect 5.1 

Greg Harvey 

Kay Yarborough Nelson 

1100pp. Ref. 676-6 

This comprehensive, up-to-date Word- 
Perfect reference is a must for beginning 
and experienced users alike. With com- 
plete, easy-to-find information on every 
WordPerfect feature and command— and 
it’s organized by practical functions, with 
business users in mind. 

Mastering Microsoft Word 
on the IBM PC 
(Fourth Edition) 

Matthew Holtz 

680pp. Ref. 597-2 

This comprehensive, step-by-step guide 
details all the new desktop publishing 
developments in this versatile word pro- 
cessor. including details on editing, for- 
matting, printing, and laser printing. Holtz 
uses sample business documents to dem- 
onstrate the use of different fonts, graph- 
ics. and complex documents. Includes 
Fast Track speed notes. For Versions 4 
and 5. 



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The m m m 

\udib G 

About the Companion Disk 

The Companion Disk contains music and sounds tliai are especially well suited for desktop 
presentations and multimedia applications. They are provided in a way that lets you play them 
even if you haven’t yet purchased an animation program or a MIDI sequencer. 

Contents and Requirements 

The Companion Disk includes 13 Standard MIDI Files—in a number of lengths and musical 
styles. There are four classical pieces as well as several examples of contemporary production 
music. These professionally performed and edited works represent music libraries from Dr. T’s 
Music Software, Opcode Systems, the Parker Adams Group, and Passport Designs. 

If you have a General MIDI sound module, a MIDI interfece, and HyperCard 2.0 or higher, you can 
play these music hies directly, without additional software, by using the SOUNDtraK Demo stack put 
together by Kord Taylor and provided by Opcode Systems. If you don’t have a General MIDI sound 
module. I’ve included a MIDI setup document so that you can use any multitimbral synthesizer or 
sound module with the SOUNDtraK demo. If you don’t have HyperCard 2.0 or higher, but you do 
have a sequencer program, you can import these files into your sequencer for editing and playback. 

All of Passport’s QuikTunes MIDI files also come in digital audio versions, so I’ve attached a few 
of these to a HyperCard stack. If you have HyperCard 2.0 or higher, you can preview these files 
directly from the stack by clicking the provided buttons. If you don’t have HyperCard 2.0 or 
higher, you can import these resource sounds into a great many applications of all types. For 
instance, if you don’t have an animation program with sound capability, but you do have Micro- 
soft Word 5.0, you can create a new document and use the Voice Annotation command on the 
Insert menu to audition any of the sounds. 

I’ve also included a few musical sound effects from the MultiMedia HANDisc from CD Tech- 
nology. These sounds are also contained in a HyperCard stack, and you can treat them the same 
as the digitized QuikTunes examples mentioned above. 

Please read the documentation that’s included on the disk. It contains important information 
about the examples that appear in this collection. Note: The two Parker Adams MIDI files have 
a few measures of lead-in time before the music begins. 


The contents of this disk were compressed using Compact Pro by Bill Goodman. To uncompress 
the disk, you’ll need a hard drive with about 1.3 megabytes of available space. Just double-click 
the icon labeled Audible Mac Companion, and designate your hard drive as the location for the 
uncompressed folder to appear. The rest is automatic. 




(Double-Sided 800K) 

For installation instructions and information about 
what is included on the disk, see the facing page. 

None of the files on this disk are copy-protected. 
However, in all cases, reselling these files without 
authorization is expressly forbidden. 





Book Level 



11 , 

Audible Macintosh 



How-To 1 
Reference 1 

The Audible Macintosh is the complete guide to sound production on the Macintosh— from terms and 
concepts, to software and hardware, to techniques for enhancing desktop presentations using sound. It’s a 
must for anyone curious about the Mac’s audio capabilities: business users interested in effective multi- 
media; artists, animators, and producers seeking the best ways to integrate audio with visuals; profes- 
sional musicians exploring Mac-based composition and recording; or any Mac user who wants to 
understand and have fun with the infinite possibilities of sound. 

The Audible Macintosh offers dozens of product 
reviews, along with information, resources, and 
practical advice for everyone from audio beginners 
to high-end professionals. You’ll find: 

A comprehensive survey of animation and 
presentation software, detailing and comparing 
the sound capabilities of virtually all packages now 
available for the Macintosh. 

In-depth information on MIDI, sequencers, 
8-bit and 16-bit digital audio technology, and 
more, including explanations and reviews of 
sequencing software, ready-made MIDI files and 
HyperCard stacks, digital recording and editing 

software, sound modules and other hardware, and a 
variety of inexpensive programs that use sound in 
creative ways. 

You’ll also find: detailed coverage of the Mac sys- 
tem’s Sound Manager, MIDI Manager, and Quick- 
Time; a guide to adding soundtracks to videotape; 
and an extensive resource guide. 

Includes an on-disk library of sample sounds — 

I n over a dozen MIDI files and digital audio 
HI clips encompassing classical and contempo- 
rary music and sound effects— suitable for 
use with desktop presentations. 

About the Author 

David M. Rubin owns and operates a small el 
tronic music production studio in the Los Ange 
area, where he composes music for film, video, at 
multimedia. He received his master’s degree in 
music theory and composition from the University 
of Northern Colorado. He is a contributing editor 
for New Media Research, where he specializes in 
audio applications for multimedia. 





ISBN D-7fl21-lDMS-a U.S. $34.95