There have always been good- and bad-sounding recordings, and advances in technology haven't really tilted the balance all that much, but they've changed the playing field. Musicians and bands no longer have to go into a high-priced studio to make a decent recording. If you fancy yourself as any kind of recording engineer here's your chance to strut your stuff.
The Audiophillie Music Awards For Excellence In Recorded Sound contest is hosted by The Audiophiliac and my friends Jeff Bakalar, Wilson Tang, and Justin Yu over at The 404 podcast. Winners will receive either a Monster Turbine Pro Gold or Pro Copper in-ear headphone, a review on this blog, and we'll play the winning songs on The 404. There will be six winners in all.
This isn't "American Idol"; we're not looking for the next Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood, it's all about the recordings' sound quality.
I like natural-sounding recordings, ones that sound as realistic as possible. Voices should sound like voices, guitars like guitars, etc. You could record your tunes in your bedroom or basement; low-tech, uncompressed, unprocessed sound quality is a plus. Or make yours in a great-sounding space like a church, concert hall, or club.
I wouldn't rule out recordings made on an analog cassette deck (but the entry must be on CD). Or use a portable digital recorder like the Zoom H2. Or your laptop.
Point is, you don't need a lot of expensive gear to make a credible entry, just skill and knowledge of what good sound sounds like.
But I also love recordings that don't bear any relationship to reality. The creative use of effects and processing that take the sound to another level are just as welcome. Go nuts and push the boundaries. Make a sound I've never heard before.
Music categories range from rock, blues, folk, soul, jazz, acoustic, and world music.
The Audiophillie Awards, selected solely by the Audiophiliac, will be reviewed in the Audiophilac blog, and winners will receive (1) set of Monster Turbine Pro Gold or Pro Copper in-ear headphones. Approximate retail value is $399 for the Turbine Pro Copper, and $299 for the Turbine Pro Gold in-ear headphones. I'll review the winners here, and we'll play the winning songs on The 404.
To enter this contest you need to (PDF link) download, print, and complete the contest entry form, which you can also get it from The 404 .
Read the full contest rules to enter after the jump.… Read more
It seems like only two weeks ago when we last heard from J.D. Power and Associates (Oh look, it was). Now the organization that just can't stop giving out awards has done it again with Verizon Wireless, ranking the carrier the highest among wireless providers in five regions across the United States. According to the J.D. Power and Associates 2009 Wireless Call Quality Performance Study, Verizon did particularly well in limiting dropped calls, failed connections, and late or failed messages.
More accurately, Verizon scored highest in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, and the Southwest. In the West region, … Read more
There are a lot of video file converters out there, and most of them are quite similar, letting users convert videos between different file formats. Unfortunately, the only thing that sets Free Convert MP4 to AVI FLV MPEG WMV MOV Converter apart from the competition is that it doesn't work very well.
We had high hopes when we first opened the program. The interface is clean and intuitive, with large graphical buttons. We were excited to see that the program also includes a YouTube downloader, and we decided to try that first. We were disappointed to find that no … Read more
MP3 Quality Modifier provides a simple set of tools for improve the sound or shrink the size of MP3 files. With fast results and easy-to-use controls that appeal to all skill levels, this program constantly pleases.
MP3 Quality Modifier's interface is impressively simple to operate, and we never felt confused by its commands. Its intuitive design and a selection of command icons make it a snap for users of any skill level to construct the perfect file size. You can select an individual MP3 or several MP3s at once. The onscreen options let you perfectly adjust the quality of … Read more
Google and Microsoft have joined a group devoted to creating a way that cell phone buyers can easily comprehend the quality of their camera phones.
The International Imaging Industry Association said the tech titans signed up to help with the third phase of the Camera Phone Image Quality Initiative, in which a variety of companies try to create measurements to capture various test results.
Mobile phones that can take photos are ubiquitous today, but with tiny image sensors and lenses and severe budget constraints, they vary widely in their ability to take good photos. Mostly all that buyers have to … Read more
QuuxPlayer Standard Edition is a sleek audio player that allows users to import and organize music already on their computers as well as access a multitude of online radio stations. The program combines an intuitive interface with useful features, making it a nice alternative to other popular audio players.
The program's interface is well-organized and attractive, with the typical audio controls as well as buttons that allow users to switch between music stored on their computer and a variety of Internet radio stations. The radio stations were particularly well-organized by genre, and we liked that the program makes it … Read more
Honda talks about bigger hybrids, Cash for Clunkers might have been a huge boondoggle, Infiniti will get an electric car, should DWT be punished harder than DUI? And we take you for a ride in the frustratingly fun Scion xB.Subscribe with iTunes (audio) Subscribe with iTunes (video) Subscribe with RSS (audio) Subscribe with RSS (video) EPISODE 142 SHOW NOTES
With Jasmine out on vacation, Donald brings CNET Labs' Eric Franklin into the studio for an epic nerd session on audio quality measurements, including recent test data from the Zune HD and iPod Touch. We've got charts, folks!
Given the vast and growing number of open-source projects, one would assume its quality had gone down as quantity went up. In fact, the inverse is true, suggests a new report from Coverity, which spent the past three years analyzing more than 11 billion lines lines of code from 280 open-source projects. This is crucial given open source's increased importance to the software industry as a whole, and not merely self-styled "open-source companies."