I was checking stats for Harmony Central’s YouTube channel and was shocked to see that our 2012 Winter NAMM video on Mixcraft 6 had 53,000 views, making it the second most-watched video in the last year—bested only by a gear interview with Rush’s Alex Lifeson. What’s so special about inexpensive DAW software from a relatively small company for it to garner that level of attention and curiosity? Let's find out.
The Akai EWI USB wind controller transmits MIDI data over a USB cable. There's no standard 5 pin MIDI DIN output port, nor is there any audio output, and the EWI doesn't make any sound of its own - it's strictly a controller that connects to a computer via a standard USB port, and then controls virtual instruments or soft synths. Even wanted to play synth sounds from a familiar wind-based interface? Keep reading.
I was never a fan of analog wireless, because it could sometimes turn from “wireless” into “w1reL3 ss,” if you catch my drift. I also didn’t like the companding that was usually employed. But between sound quality and predictable operation, digital wireless made me a believer - and now Sony has entered the affordable digital wireless arena with their DWZ line. We’ll look at the DWZ-B30GB for guitar/bass first, and then proceed to the DWZ-M50 handheld wireless mic for vocals.
Molten Voltage has been making a popular accessory pedal for the Whammy 4 called the Molten MIDI 2, and now they've updated it to work with the Whammy 5. The Molten MIDI 5 is a control pedal, and makes no sounds of its own - but it allows you to make sounds with your Whammy 5 that would be very difficult, if not impossible, to do without it.
For years, many audio interface aficionados considered the Mbox line as basically a “dongle” for Pro Tools users who couldn’t afford the HD systems - so you can probably understand why, when Avid announced the third generation Mbox series, I wasn’t exactly tingling with excitement. But to my surprise, the specs weren’t just great; they were stunning—so let's find out what makes the new generation something truly special.
The AT-200 is based on Antares’ Auto-Tune—yes, the same vilified/praised technology used on vocalists to do everything from turn their voices into machine-like gimmicky to fixing a vocal line transparently and subtly. With the AT-200, Auto-Tune uses DSP-based pitch transposition to correct each string’s audio output so it sounds in tune. So does it really work? Yes, and it has several other tricks up its sleeve . . .