Happy Birthday To Us! 8 Years On Top
Welcome to the first ever 'self-defence special' anniversary issue of Sound On Sound — at our new increased size, a rolled-up copy of SOS can now be used as an effective substitute for a standard issue Metropolitan Police truncheon, and is therefore, technically speaking, an offensive weapon. So keep your copy soft and floppy; you have been warned...
Yes, it's our birthday, so we thought we'd kick off our eighth year with our biggest ever issue — 192 pages! Our esteemed editorial director Ian Gilby nearly passed out when he realised that this would mean printing over 15 tons of magazines to fulfill demand.
Since its launch in 1985, Sound On Sound has established itself as the leading magazine for hi-tech music and recording. We've consistently brought our readers — from beginners and serious amateurs through to top studio professionals — the information and advice that you want and need. We've always stayed on top of developments at the cutting edge of technology, and I'm particularly glad, therefore, that this month we've been able to bring you definitive reviews of several significant products.
The Akai S01 is a dream come true for a good many musicians — a 16-bit Akai sampler that'll leave you change from £700. Breaking price barriers in this way is important, because relatively few of us — certainly not this writer — can go ahead and buy equipment just because we like it, or even feel we need it. We must also be able to afford it.
The Atari Falcon will bring 16-bit digital audio to the desktop, much as the Atari ST did with MIDI; expect to see plenty of reviews of Falcon software as and when it becomes available. The TG500 is the first 64-note polyphonic synth module — that may sound like an awful lot of notes, but we seem to have a bad habit of accepting what's currently available, and then wanting twice as much of, well, everything really. 64 notes should keep us happy — for a while, at least.
The Yamaha CBX-D5, of which we have a sneak preview, is another facet of affordable digital recording — see the Falcon, and news of Tascam's digital 8-track, for two more. Controlled by an entry-level ST or Mac, the CBX-D5 promises to bring us digital recording integrated with MIDI sequencing at a very reasonable price. And speaking of digital recording plus MIDI, after you've finished reading about the CBX-D5 you can read our verdict on Cubase Audio for the Mac.
The Fostex DCM100 is another breakthrough, an elegant, integrated MIDI controlled mixing system that works with your sequencer to offer full dynamic control of eight stereo channels of audio — 24 stereo channels if you chain three DCM100s. (Actually, since it's our birthday dear manufacturers, you don't really want all this lovely review gear back, do you?)
There's much more to life than new toys, however; still more important than knowing about the latest gadgets is learning how to use the ones you already own, and through features and regular series such as Hands On and Drum Programming, we'll continue to help with that throughout the next 12 months and beyond. Other birthday presents from us to you include 10 pages of Buyers' Guides to current gear, our biggest ever competition to win over £10,000-worth of dream MIDI studio, a look at the basics of using multi-timbrality in a MIDI setup, plus a new live sound column (Live End), a new series looking at musicians and their personal workspaces (A Room Of My Own), and... well, just go ahead and read it for yourselves — I'll sneak off and see if I can get my hands on the TG500 before Yamaha want it back.
Editorial by Paul Ireson
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