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Sound Engineering Explained, 2nd Edition

Book Description

This straightforward introduction to audio techniques guides the beginner through principles such as sound waves and basic acoustics and offers practical advice for using recording and reproduction equipment. Previously known as Audio Explained, this latest edition includes new material on: reverberation and its use in recording; principles of digital mixing; digital recording; including MiniDisc and MP3; digital artificial reverberation.

Designed with the student in mind, information is organised according to level of difficulty. An understanding of the basic principles is essential to anyone wishing to make successful recordings and so chapters are split into two parts: the first introducing the basic theories in a non-technical way; the second dealing with the subject in more depth. Key facts are clearly identified in separate boxes and further information for the more advanced reader is indicated in shaded boxes. In addition, questions are provided (with answers supplied at the end of the book) as a teaching and learning aid.

Sound Engineering Explained is ideal for both serious audio amateurs any student studying audio for the first time, in particular those preparing for Part One exams of the City & Guilds Sound Engineering (1820) course.

Table of Contents

  1. Front Cover
  2. Half Title
  3. Title Page
  4. Copyright
  5. Contents
  6. Preface
  7. Acknowledgements
  8. About this book
  9. 1 Sound waves
    1. Part 1
    2. What are sound waves?
    3. Frequency
    4. Wavelength
    5. Amplitude
    6. The velocity of sound waves
    7. Velocity, frequency and wavelength
    8. Sound waves and obstacles
    9. The bending of sound waves (diffraction)
    10. Units used in sound
    11. Sound intensity and the effect of distance
    12. Decibels
    13. Part 2
    14. The velocity of sound waves
    15. Units
    16. Decibels
  10. 2 Hearing and the nature of sound
    1. Part 1
    2. The response of the ear
    3. Loudness. The dB(A)
    4. Musical pitch
    5. Musical quality (‘timbre’)
    6. The brain's perception of sound
    7. Part 2
    8. Pitch
    9. Frequency ranges in music
    10. ‘False bass’
  11. 3 Basic acoustics
    1. Part 1
    2. Sound isolation
    3. Internal acoustics
    4. Part 2
    5. Sound isolation
    6. Sound absorption
  12. 4 Microphones
    1. Part 1
    2. Microphone transducers
    3. Polar responses
    4. ‘Boundary’ microphones
    5. Personal microphones
    6. Radio microphones (‘wireless microphones’)
    7. Part 2
    8. Electrostatic microphones
    9. Production of the different polar responses
    10. Sensitivities of microphones
    11. Phantom power
    12. Balanced wiring
    13. Radio microphone data
  13. 5 Using microphones
    1. Objectives and problems in recording
    2. Specific applications of microphones
  14. 6 Monitoring
    1. Part 1
    2. Technical monitoring
    3. Aural monitoring
    4. Listening tests
    5. Part 2
    6. Reference voltages in audio signals
    7. PPMs and VU meter readings
    8. Helmholtz resonators
    9. Loudspeaker power
    10. Loudspeaker cables
    11. Professional and domestic standards
  15. 7 Stereo
    1. Part 1
    2. How stereo works
    3. Methods of producing inter-channel differences
    4. Terminology
    5. Stereo listening
    6. Stereo loudspeaker matching
    7. Phase
    8. Part 2
    9. Microphone techniques for stereo
    10. Headphones for stereo monitoring
  16. 8 Sound mixers
    1. Part 1
    2. Terminology
    3. The basic channel
    4. Important features of any mixer
    5. Output stage
    6. Part 2
    7. Inputs and connections
    8. Equalization
    9. Public Address and Foldback (PA and FB)
    10. Talkback
  17. 9 Controlling levels
    1. Manual control of levels
    2. Electronic level control
    3. Noise gates
  18. 10 Digital audio
    1. Part 1
    2. Historical
    3. Basic principles
    4. Other applications of digital audio
    5. MIDI
    6. Data compression
    7. Additional terminology
    8. Part 2
    9. Compact discs
    10. Error correction
    11. Cleaning CDs
    12. Cost of CD players
    13. NICAM
    14. A little more about error correction
  19. 11 Recording
    1. Part 1 – Recording devices and systems
    2. Analogue recording
    3. The fundamentals of magnetic recording
    4. Cassette quality
    5. Noise reduction
    6. Head and tape cleanliness
    7. Digital recording
    8. DAT
    9. MiniDisc®
    10. Solid state recording
    11. MP3
    12. Part 2 – Editing
    13. Why edit?
    14. Practicalities
    15. Editing tape
    16. Digital tape editing
    17. MiniDisc editing
  20. 12 Public address
    1. Part 1
    2. Outdoor PA
    3. Indoor PA
    4. Part 2
    5. Howl-rounds
    6. 100-volt systems
  21. 13 Music and sound effects
    1. Music
    2. Sound effects
  22. 14 Safety
    1. Electrical safety
    2. Noise and hearing
    3. ‘Mechanical’ safety
    4. Fire
  23. Copyright
  24. Miscellaneous data
  25. Further reading
  26. Answers
  27. Index