Cerberus Bass Amplifikation from KAUSSA

Wow.

That is a great way to start off this review. “Wow”, is what continued to go through my head as I twisted knobs, pushed buttons, slid sliders, and tried new microphones and cabinets. Cerberus Bass Amplifikation from KUASSA is the bomb! Like I said in the video, if you are looking for an amazing sounding bass “VI” or virtual instrument, for your music, a bass DI track, or for live playing, this might just be the one you are looking for.

Let me be more precise here. I could not find a not usable tone no matter what I tried. I tried to make the bass sound awful and thin, but I failed. Everything I dialed in just sounded big and fat. I had a cheap bass with very old strings plugged directly in, too, as I made this demo video.

 Let the video “do the talking”, if you catch my drift, the  Cerberus Bass Amplifikation from KUASSA is indeed perfect for the mixing engineer, recording artist, songwriter, or live player in this new digital age. It is loads of fun and a great sounding plugin!

Two bass popping and string pounding thumbs way up! The  Cerberus Bass Amplifikation from KUASSA.

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Episode 68, “G.A.S. my gear addiction, and the truth”

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Welcome to The Home Recording Weekly Podcast. My name is Kern Ramsdell, and we have some important stuff to discuss today.

Inside of todays show, I discuss how I find gear and how I get it at less than full price. I explain why it is that I don’t use a lot of fancy plugins, and I detail how you should think about all of those fancy YouTube “demo style videos” that we all make.

Here is a link over to the 2015 Home Recording Weekly Songwriting Contest, (http://www.homerecordingweekly.com/2015/05/31/episode-61-2015-hrw-songwriting-contest-begins/) the rules for entering and a list of prizes. You have a couple of weeks left to enter, so please finish that song soon and enter!

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The UPLIFTDESK, along with the Dual Monitor Arms,  have been a complete blessing, and the best piece of gear that I have acquired as of late. No buyers remorse here. If you have been thinking about chancing over to a standing workstation, The Human Solution (WWW.thehumansolution.com) is where you should go to get it. My life has become more productive and less painful since I updated my workstation and since “I got down to standing up”! I love it!

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“Mixthru”, Matt Weiss (The Pro Audio Files) mixing tutorial, reviewed

Imagine watching a professional mixing engineer opening up a brand new session to mix and going through it with you, in real time, to mix it down, to a finished mix. How about with Matt Weiss? Well, it is now possible, it is now happening, and it is with Matt Weiss.

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This is a review for the video tutorial series that is supplied with “Mixthru“. With that said, lets check out what is inside the included video mix session.

One thing that struck me was that this is the first time Matt has actually listened to the session that he will soon begin mixing!

After a quick listen, Matt gets down to mixing. It is very eye opening to watch Matt mix along. It is very interesting to watch him open up plugins like EQ’s and compressors, and then work along, explaining as he mixes. It is also cool to learn about the tracks that he decides to leave alone, and why. I am not proficient with mixing rap, or “trap rap” as a genre, just yet, so this is good for me. I couldn’t tell you how each track is supposed to sound, so I am really learning a lot here. I can tell “Mixthru” is going to absolutely rock!

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Matt seems to mix like I do. I don’t use a template, per say, when I mix. I have seen others use mix templates, and I think people can sometimes become trapped by their templates. I like to tackle each mix with a fresh mind, and with a fresh idea about which plugin to reach for. Templates can rob that creativity from me.

Matt shows how he uses creative EQ’ing to carve out space for the vocals to sit in, and he explains this as he does so, here in this part of  “Mixthru“. Matt shows how he forces some “like features” to be more wide, some more narrow, but more importantly he details why this is done. Matt uses terms like “exciting”, “back space”, “life”, “dimension”, “interesting”, “tall”, “thin”, and “connect”, so that you can better understand where he is headed.

I am learning a lot, plus I feel confident that I can not only do a good job mixing the same session files, but I will have some fun mixing it too. I can’t wait to dig in.

Its interesting to see Matt re-adjust the things that he has already fixed, as he brings in more and more tracks. This is something I needed to see. Nothing is ever perfect, and things will need to change as other tracks come into the mix.

As I watch along, I am learning a lot about what tracks are more or less important in rap music. I am also learning a lot about using subtractive EQ practices as I mix, to make/leave room for more important tracks. Subtractive EQ is very important, and learning how to sculpt unwanted frequencies out of some tracks to make room for other frequencies in other, more important tracks is the name of the game. Especially when a lot of pad and layered kicks, snares, strings, and vocals are present. Matt works fast, but precise. It is too easy to turn up unwanted frequencies instead until your mix is loud and way out of control. A lot can be learned here. I am loving “Mixthru“.

But when things get too loud, what do you do? Matt explains what he does as the music becomes louder than the vocals. Instead of introducing volume wars, Matt uses parallel compression to bring attention to the vocals, and to better even things out. I always admire how Matt works with compression. His tips on parallel compression is the best advice I have yet received from a professional mixing engineer. I learned a lot here, and I can’t wait to correct what I have been doing incorrectly. If you want to learn more about Matts understanding of compression, and how he uses it to deliver killer mixes, check out Matts’ “Mixing with Compression” training video series. That series gave me a lot of understanding and confidence when applying compression.

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Matt continues to blow minds as he explains and then sets up a vocal exciter track. I had not ever seen anything like that before. If you are lucky enough to watch this installment of “Mixthru” then you, too, have just unlocked one more secret that the pros use to obtain amazing vocals in amazing mixes! Boom!

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Matt goes into how he gets vocals to be way more in tune, but rather quickly. For a slowed down look (and deep lesson) on the different EQ filter types that Matt is selecting to use, and why he is using them, you might want to check out “Mixing with EQ“, also by Matt Weiss. Matt is not rushed, but he does not want this to become a long series. It is a trade off, really. This is a lot of information at a great price. Keep in mind Matt is an in demand mixing engineer for a lot of genres like rap, hip hop, and the like. This is about as professional as I have ever been in the “Virtual mixing” side of things.

I love how he makes sure to use a good assortment of EQ’s and Compressors as he works, too. We get a broad spectrum and we learn more about each tool and how to better yield it.

Look, watching a professional mix a song from start to finish is great for a lot of reasons. You get a lot of information dealing with all aspects of a mix. You learn a lot about the techniques that professional mixing engineers use to get such great sounding mixes. You get to learn a lot about how to better use tools like EQ and compression. You learn a lot about how to use tricks like parallel compression to reinforce your tracks. You also get to learn more about applying effects like reverb and delay, too name a couple. Watching a professional work through this stuff is just so important for your mixes, your confidence, and perhaps for your career. Plus, you have the same exact tracks to mix, time and time again.

One more thing. We emulate who it is that we learn from. For example, if I take guitar lessons from Eddie Van Halen guess who I am going to sound like? Yep, EVH himself. Why wouldn’t you want to take mixing lessons from one of the hippest, coolest, amazingly talented mixing engineers available today? Truth is, you would, right? Well, here it is. “Mixthru“.

OK, hold on. Since you are reading through this review that tells me that you are looking to improve your mixing skills, so let me “sweeten the pot” just a tad. Let me toss in some special gifts, just for you.

If you use any of the links supplied in this review to join “Mixthru“, I will receive a small piece of the sale. I want to give you something for using these links to make your purchases. As my way of saying thank you, if you use any of these links to purchase, I will give you some very special, very detailed gifts, aimed right at you, the person that is willing to learn more about recording, mixing, and mastering.

Let me tell you about the new Home Recording Weekly “Home Studio eBundle that is ready and waiting for you. Inside the Home Recording Weekly “Home Studio eBundle” you will find not one, not two, but three amazingly helpful video training products that will transform how you approach recording, mixing, and mastering in your home studio. They are titled, “Midi Transformation”, “Perfect V.I. Bass and Guitars”, and “The Pro Mixers Playbook“.

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Each individual training product, found inside the Home Recording Weekly “Home Studio eBundle“, contains multiple “How to” style videos that are made up of both “screen capture” style videos and some videos that were shot right inside my very own home studio. Each training product packed inside the Home Recording Weekly “Home Studio eBundle” has been recorded, edited, and mixed down with a few main things in mind.

First, I know that “Content is king”. Each video contains quality, unique content that I, personally, just could not find anywhere else. Next, the quality of the audio and of the picture is the best I have ever produced. The lighting and the audio has to be right in order for you to see and hear what I am explaining in the videos, in order for you to get the most out of the videos. I worked very hard to create video training that is helpful in nature, unique in content, and killer in features like audio and lighting. These are the best production tips and techniques that I have learned that have taken my mixing over the top, and rocketed my skills to the best they have ever been.

Let me break down, quickly, what is covered in each training series:

Midi Trans

MIDI Transformation” is my version of how to get the most realistic sounding, human-like MIDI in your productions. MIDI can be one of the most confusing things to learn when it comes to making music in your home studio. But, it does not have to be! Let me explain to you some of the best ideas for dealing with MIDI, and some of the best tips that helped me obtain believable MIDI parts for recordings that I have helped to produce. Plus, I toss in a whole section dealing with how to write, work, and then export your MIDI drums into common, studio like “Drum Stems”. Since were all used to working with drum stems (stereo over heads, snare top, snare bottom, kick, tom mics, room mics, hi hat, and rides) why shouldn’t we export our MIDI into real world drum stems? This is how we then mix our MIDI drums into believable, human sounding drums for our mixes. There is years of hard work and years of tough learning boiled down and crammed inside this awesome training video series.

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Perfect V.I. Bass and Guitars” is your ticket to realistic sounding bass and guitars, via your favorite “Virtual Instrument” plugins/guitar and bass simulation software. These “V.I.’s have often times gotten a bad rap, but that is simply because folks are not using the features to the best of their ability. But not using the VI feature sets to their fullest isn’t the only reason they are getting “less than” sounding bass and guitars. There is also a whole host of things that we can all do in order to make our “V.I. bass and guitars” fit better in our music, and put them over the top when it comes to “listener believability”. These techniques and workflows have taken me years to develop, but you can have then today!

Watch along as I track a session, from start to finish, detailing each import step as I go. I start with the bass and work it to perfection using a host of tools like Amplitube Ampeg, Audio bending/time shifting, Melodyne, EQ, compression, and so much more. Each video continues the journey from “DI” bass, to an amazing, “in the pocket”, believable bass. The information found inside “Perfect V.I. Bass and Guitars” has taken me an incredibly long time to discover, via an endless amount of “trial and error”, which you will not find anywhere else, period. If you like using todays best “amp sim/V.I.’s” to enhance your bass and/or guitars, or if you want to learn way more than you currently know about the whole process, then “Perfect V.I. Bass and Guitars” is for you.

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The Pro Mixers Playbook

Learning how to mix like the pros can be the most rewarding thing we ever do. It can also be the most frustrating thing we ever do. Why does learning how to mix have to be so difficult?

The truth is there is a lot of information out there, broken up into quick little video chunks, some over here, and some over there, and, well, in a lot of different places. Learning just one brand new mixing technique can take you to many different places that all seem to have somewhat competing information.

For this very reason, I have been hard at work, putting something rather special together that I call “The Pro Mixers Playbook”. I have made over 4.5 hours of training videos together, in one easy to download PDF file. I have listed, and then made corresponding videos for the most powerful, the most “mix-shaping” 15 Pro mixing plays that have had the most impact (hands down) with my own mixes. This is a mixing foundation just waiting to happen. There is something new and rewarding, for new mixers and pros alike, inside in “The Pro Mixers Playbook”.

The entire Home Recording Weekly “Home Studio eBundle” is just my way of saying “THANK YOU!!!” for using any one of my links to purchase any one of the training videos that I have reviewed for you, right here, on Home Recording Weekly.

If you are interested in learning the best of the best techniques for creating and then exporting realistic sounding MIDI parts, learning more about using software like Amplitube in order to get believable bass and guitars in your productions, or learn the most impactful mixing techniques, that will totally transform your mixes, all in video form, then get your own copy of Home Recording Weekly “Home Studio eBundle” today.

Here is how:

When you use any of the links that I have provided to join “Mixthru” , I will allow you a download code for the Home Recording Weekly “Home Studio eBundle“. Before you purchase any training, come to Home Recording Weekly and use any of the links that I have provided in any of my reviews. That way I can view the sale and send you your free “Home Studio eBundle“.

All you need to do is send me an email (kern@homerecordingweekly.com) with the words “Home Studio eBundle” in the subject line. Tell me the product that you have purchased, using my link, and I will send you your free copy.

If you are thinking about purchasing “Mixthru“, then right now is the time to make that purchase! Get you own Home Recording Weekly “Home Studio eBundle”  today!

Episode 67, Winner number two of the HRW Songwriting Contest.

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Congratulations to Eric, his friends and family, on a song well done! Eric has taken home a long list of awesome prizes, here is the list, which is always a great way to say “Job well done”! Wow, talk about a catchy track, eh?

If you are a songwriter and you have a song that you would love to enter, here are the rules for entering the 2015 Home Recording Weekly Songwriting Contest. Listen to the audio podcast that the link takes you over too, and simply listen. Once you enter, sit back and wait to hear if you have won. It is that easy!

BTW, are you having trouble wrapping your head around compression? Are you struggling to figure out what compression is and why we need it in the first place? If so, you are not alone. Tools like Compression take time to learn about. If you are having a hard time figuring out how it works, or you are ready to take your understanding of compression to the next level, I have some helpful links for you.

Helpful compression link number one“. Start your journey here.

Helpful compression link number two“. Get more direction here.

Helpful compression link number three“, a mixing video that demonstrates compression as well as many basic, foundational techniques that you must learn to obtain a great mix.

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A free eBundle that explains the acoustical problems with your room, and how to make it better for recording, mixing, and mastering, can be yours for free. The eBundle contains plans, links to the required building materials, and a video that shows the finished panels that you can put together, “D.I.Y” style, for cheap! Here is a link over to “Acoustic room treatment made easy“, let your recordings, mixes, and masters get better starting now!

The U73b “Mastering” compressor/limiter from Audified, demo

Here we are with another great tool from the good folks over at Audified, the U73b compressor and limiter.

The U73b compressor and limiter is a great tool to work with on account of a few reasons. First, I love the whole “less knobs is more” approach. There is less to get confused about, with the U73b, and more to love. The U73b is quick and easy to set up. This means you can quickly and easily get better mixes using the U73b compressor and limiter.

I absolutely love the U73b compressor and limiter on a master, of course, and on such tracks as vocals and stringed instruments. I love what it does in the high end of the frequency spectrum. This emulation of an all analogue mastering compressor/limiter sounds warm to me, and just adds “that something” that we all look for when reaching for a “warm sounding” compressor/limiter.

The U73b compressor and limiter of course shines when used as a mastering compressor, mastering limiter, but do not call this unit a “one trick pony”. Put the U73b compressor and limiter on strings, acoustic guitars, dirty electric guitars, vocals, bass, anything, and get ready for a smile to take over your face. That is what seems to happen to me. Plus, my ears become happy.

Episode 66, Welcome “TroubleShot”

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Winner number one, of the 2015 Home Recording Weekly Songwriting Contest, Mike S. of the band “TroubleShot” are on todays show. Mike has put in some hard work here, and we are very lucky to have this clip. Listen in and learn what it took to make the winning song, “Some days”, as they go through each instrument, EQ, and compressor. Great stuff guys!

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Episode 65, “The First Gig” is also mentioned in todays show. Thank you for all of the fun comments and the sharing of such cool links. I listened to them all BTW.

Grab your free copy of “Acoustic room treatment made easy” eBundle today. Follow the link provided and drop the email that you wish it delivered to into the box in the upper right hand side.

Episode 65, “The first gig”

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Inside of todays show I mention a few things that you need images for, ands a few products. Here are the things that I mention in Episode 65…

The brand new Home Studio eBundle

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Here are some images of “The first gig” with the new band that I “work the sound” for. The ship is named “Casablanca” and it was a booze cruise that we supplied entertainment for.

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Please check out the UPLIFT DESK from The Human Solution, as it has made all the difference in my working life.

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Please send in, and enter your songs, into the Home Recording Weekly Song Writing Contest. Please, send in your questions, comments, and or concerns along with images of your home studio!

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Sigmund delay demo/review

The name of the plugin is Sigmund High Quality Flexible Delay Unit and it is from the D16 Group. That is a long name, but this delay has a long list of features. Lets see, the Sigmund has cool and useful features like overdrive style saturation, LFO’s, peak followers, high pass, low pass and band pass filters, limiters, customizable (serial/parallel) delay operations for four stereo/mono delay units, envelope filter/transient designer, left/right or mid/side delays with added stereo/mono knob (see video), and so much more. Yes, this is one bad ass delay unit.

It is funny how I was looking for a new delay unit as I was asked to do this demo video. I thought “Now is the time” to choose a delay unit, and I chose well. But the Sigmund has a lot going on under the hood and it needs some time to get to know what is happening. Here is a video that explains what I have been able to learn about the Sigmund delay unit in the short time that I have owned it.

Let me close with saying that the Sigmund has a long list of features that will prove to be very handy, once I let them sink in. The Sigmund delay unit demands some play time, just to wrap your mind around it. The more you learn about it, and its incredible list of features, the more I can see myself doing with it. The Sigmund delay can perform in all genres of music, but I suppose it excel at getting glitch like delay effects found in EDM and techno style music applications. I hate to “dumb down” the Sigmund delay unit and use it on vocals for rock and roll, but I will be doing that often. The truth is the Sigmund delay unit can handle easy to insane delay duties, and so much more too!

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