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Music Engineering

Book Description

Music Engineering is a hands-on guide to the practical aspects of electric and electronic music. It is both a compelling read and an essential reference guide for anyone using, choosing, designing or studying the technology of modern music. The technology and underpinning science are introduced through the real life demands of playing and recording, and illustrated with references to well known classic recordings to show how a particular effect is obtained thanks to the ingenuity of the engineer as well as the musician. In addition, an accompanying companion website containing over 50 specially chosen tracks for download, provides practical demonstrations of the effects and techniques described in the book.

Written by a music enthusiast and electronic engineer, this book covers the electronics and physics of the subject as well as the more subjective aspects. The second edition includes an updated Digital section including MPEG3 and fact sheets at the end of each chapter to summarise the key electronics and science. In addition to instruments and recording technology, this book covers essential kit such as microphones, sequencers, amplifiers and loudspeakers.

Discover the potential of electronics and computers to transform your performances and recordings
Develop an understanding of the engineering behind state of the art instruments, amplifiers and recording equipment
An accompanying companion website completes the package with over 50 tracks providing practical demonstrations of the effects and techniques described in the book

Table of Contents

  1. Cover image
  2. Title page
  3. Table of Contents
  4. Copyright
  5. Preface to the second edition
  6. Preface to the first edition
  7. Chapter 1: Jilted Generation – Science and sensibility
    1. Who this book is for
    2. Music and the twentieth century
    3. Electronics
    4. The messenger and the message
    5. New threats … new opportunities
    6.  
  8. Chapter 2: Good Vibrations – The nature of sound
    1. The physics of sound
    2. Fourier
    3. The Fourier transform
    4. Transients
    5. Musical ranges
    6. Musical scales and temperaments
    7. The harmonic series
    8. Measuring sound
    9. Radiation of sound
    10. The near and far field
    11. The physiology of hearing
    12. The psychology of hearing
    13. Frequency masking
    14.  
  9. Chapter 3: Stand By Me – Microphones and their applications
    1. Principles
    2. Pressure microphones
    3. Pressure gradient or velocity microphones
    4. Transduction method
    5. Practical cardioid microphones
    6. Pressure zone microphone (PZM)
    7. Electret microphones
    8. Microphone usage – basic issues
    9. Proximity effect or bass tip-up
    10. Microphone technique
    11.  
  10. Chapter 4: Message in a Bottle – Valve technology
    1. What is ‘valve sound’?
    2. Harmonic distortion
    3. Intermodulation distortion
    4. Headroom
    5. Interaction with loudspeakers
    6. Reduction in loudspeaker distortion
    7. Valve theory
    8. Practical valve circuits
    9.  
  11. Chapter 5: Roll Over Beethoven – Electric instruments
    1. Introduction
    2. Electric guitars
    3. Electric organs
    4. Theremin
    5. The Univox
    6. The Hohner Clavinet
    7. Electric pianos
    8. Electronic pianos
    9. Martenot
    10. Mellotron
    11. Tape-bow violin
    12.  
  12. Chapter 6: Wild Thing – Electronic effects
    1. Echo and reverberation
    2. Tremelo
    3. Fuzz
    4. Wah-wah
    5. Pitch shifting
    6. Flanging, phasing and chorus
    7. Ring modulation
    8. Dynamics processors
    9. Feed-forward and feedback compressors
    10. Two practical compressors
    11. Noise reduction
    12. Audio enhancers
    13. De-essers
    14. Vocoder
    15. Talk-box guitar effect
    16.  
  13. Chapter 7: Pet Sounds – Electronic synthesis
    1. Introduction
    2. Voltage controlled oscillator (VCO)
    3. Voltage controlled filter (VCF)
    4. Envelope generation
    5. Attack–sustain–release (ASR) generator
    6. Low-frequency oscillator (LFO)
    7. Analogue noise generators
    8. Colours of noise
    9. Analogue synthesisers
    10. FM sound synthesis
    11. Perceived fundamental
    12. Complex FM and feedback
    13. Sampling
    14. Wavetable synthesis and other proprietary synthesis algorithms
    15. Modern trends in synthesiser design
    16. Physical modelling
    17. Functional physical modelling
    18. Re-circulating wavetable approach
    19. Waveguide filtering
    20. Granular synthesis
    21. Xennakis
    22. Waveshape distortion synthesis
  14. Chapter 8: Silver Machine – Sequencers and MIDI
    1. Analogue sequencers
    2. MIDI
    3. The MIDI specification
    4. MIDI sequencing
  15. Chapter 9: Got to Get You into My Life – Sound recording
    1. Introduction
    2. Magnetic theory
    3. The physics of magnetic recording
    4. Bias
    5. Equalisation
    6. Tape speed
    7. Speed stability
    8. Recording formats – analogue machines
    9. Digital tape machines
    10. Creative uses of tape
    11. Hard disk recording
    12. Compact disc
    13. The CD rainbow
    14. DVD
    15. MiniDisc (MD)
    16.  
  16. Chapter 10: Bits ‘n’ Pieces – Digital Audio
    1. Why digital?
    2. Sampling theory and conversion
    3. Digital audio interfaces
    4. MADI (AES10–1991) serial multi-channel audio digital interface
    5. Digital tape recorders
    6. Digital audio stationary head (DASH) format
    7. Data compression techniques
    8. Digital audio production
    9. Audio data files
    10. Sound cards
    11. PCI bus versus ISA bus
    12. Disks and other peripheral hardware
    13. Hard drive interface standards
    14. Digital noise generation – chain-code generators
    15.  
  17. Chapter 11: Space Odyssey – Stereo and spatial sound
    1. Stereo
    2. Spatial hearing
    3. Binaural techniques
    4. Two-loudspeaker stereophony
    5. FRANCINSTIEN stereophonic image enhancement technique
    6. 3D sound fields
    7.  
  18. Chapter 12: Let’s Stick Together – Recording consoles
    1. Introduction
    2. Standard levels and level meters
    3. Standard operating levels and line-up tones
    4. Digital line-up
    5. Sound mixer architecture and circuit blocks
    6. Audio mixer circuitry
    7. Mixer automation
    8. Digital consoles
    9.  
  19. Chapter 13: Unchained Melody – Amplifiers
    1. Two different philosophies
    2. Amplifiers for high quality monitoring
    3. Pre-amplifiers
    4. Instrument amplifiers
    5. DSP and amplification
  20. Chapter 14: Shout – Loudspeakers
    1. Moving-coil loudspeaker theory
    2. Enclosures
    3. Crossover networks
    4. Active crossovers
    5. Slots
    6. Leslie loudspeaker
    7. Horn loudspeakers
    8. Electrostatic loudspeakers
    9.  
  21. Chapter 15: Synchronicity – Video and synchronisation
    1. Introduction
    2. Persistence of vision
    3. Cathode ray tube and raster scanning
    4. Television signal
    5. Colour perception
    6. Colour television
    7. Analogue video interfaces
    8. Digital video
    9. Embedded digital audio in the digital video interface
    10. Timecode
    11. Note
  22. Music Engineering CD
  23. Index