Designing Sexy Signal Flow
The General Rule of Thumb
When using analog equipment, you want to maintain the cleanest
signal path possible. When using digital equipment, you want to
convert your signal as early as possible; and you should do it with
the highest quality converter that you have access to. If the sound
needs work, start from the beginning. Start by listening to your audio
in its rawest form. That means that if a singer is in your tracking
room, it is time to leave the control room. A good acoustic sound is
the key. Then, you design the best signal path you can, to capture it
true. This kind of thinking will open creative doors for you.
Suppose the signal does not begin with an acoustic sound. Say you
are recording a sampler or synthesizer with digital outputs. In this
case, you can do whatever you want. All digital media is recorded in
binary code. Binary is the language of computers, which only
contains two characters. They are 1 and 0 (or “ON” and “OFF”).
This is why there is no loss in sound quality, because magnetic
charge is no longer a factor. There simply is the presence of
electricity, or there is not. Binary does not leave any margin for error.
I have come to teach and support digital recording in my business.
It is the choice of the consumer, for one fundamental reason:
convenience. Online music libraries are the way of the future. They
have become accessible; just about anywhere you happen to be.
The way I see it; if this is how it will be received, why not record it
like this in the first place?