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Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
#3042653 05/08/20 12:57 PM
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I'm hoping to use this as sort of a fact checker thread or at least a place to challenge things that are so often repeated that we may take them as facts. Anything OT goes and I'm hoping folks will add to this as things come up that we may otherwise dismiss to ourselves as BS. I'll start with a few that have resurfaced recently in no particular order:

- Keep unbalanced cables to 10 feet maximum. This came up recently in regard to studio application. I have yet to see any difference between a 1 foot cable and a 20-25 foot cable. If you use decent shielded cable it makes no difference in practice under most "normal circumstances". Yes, RFI can bleed in and balanced certainly helps when it does, but does everyone really have a problem with RFI? I say try it first. I won't speak to live applications where hostile environments prevail.

- Speaking of cables...building your own is way cheaper or "I saved so much money". Maybe if you're using the crapiest connectors and cabling. I build all my own cables because I like the neatness of custom lengths. But its not cheap, especially if you add in the expense of soldering iron and other tools needed not to mention the time involved. Good mono connectors are maybe $4 each and balanced $5 each. Midi connectors are priced about the same. Last year I paid $0.72 per foot for balanced cable. Surprisingly unbalanced is more these days IIRC. Midi cable is about the same price as audio. So that's about $25 for a 20' cable. Like I said you can do it cheaper but still.

- The Andromeda has the worst digital effects ever (or something like that). Never understood this one. I suspect often repeated by people that never programmed an effect in their entire life. These aren't top quality like dedicated units or even better VSTs but certainly on par with other synths (hard and soft) and very usable.

- The less devices connected to USB the better performance I get from my computer or ...use standard midi connectors through an interface when possible. No details ever provided on drivers or that maybe the individuals PC just sucks. I've found no difference in using USB and I've got at least 10 devices all working real time. But seems people love to chant this mantra.

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Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042661 05/08/20 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Markyboard
- The Andromeda has the worst digital effects ever (or something like that). Never understood this one. I suspect often repeated by people that never programmed an effect in their entire life. These aren't top quality like dedicated units or even better VSTs but certainly on par with other synths (hard and soft) and very usable.
Wait - lemme see if I can take this one. grin

Hi -
My name's Dave Bryce, and I was Alesis' marketing manager for their synth division when Andromeda was designed and built. I actually named her... idea wave

The Andromeda's effects are essentially an Alesis Wedge - one of the best sounding effects processors Alesis founder Keith Barr ever made, and one that was quite close to his heart - and an analog distortion circuit which I believe resembles a Pro Co Rat in many ways. cool

I still use a Wedge in my studio. It's the only orther hardware reverb I still use besides my Bricasti M7, so it's probably no surprise that I'm of the opinion that Andy actually has better onboard effects than many other synths. idk

dB

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042669 05/08/20 02:41 PM
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A couple of more untrue myths.

On the subject of cables: Monster type cables are better than anything that costs less. Conversely the 'el cheapo' cables are just as good as the mid priced ones.

MIDI sounds bad, and GeneralMIDI sounds even worse.

This one very controversial: Tone wood sounds better in a solid body electric guitar that is set up the same and has identical pickups.


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Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042670 05/08/20 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Markyboard
- Keep unbalanced cables to 10 feet maximum. This came up recently in regard to studio application. I have yet to see any difference between a 1 foot cable and a 20-25 foot cable. If you use decent shielded cable it makes no difference in practice under most "normal circumstances". Yes, RFI can bleed in and balanced certainly helps when it does, but does everyone really have a problem with RFI? I say try it first. I won't speak to live applications where hostile environments prevail.
.

I guess your qualifier “I have yet to see any difference” determines how you think about this. It is quite easily measured, but if you don’t hear it then I guess for you it doesn’t matter.

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042673 05/08/20 03:10 PM
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Couple more that just popped in my head, and this first one always kills me:

- "I cant justify the purchase being that I'm just a hobbyist". idk Isn't that what hobbies are about? Granted this one gets complicated but I also often hear this from people with decent paying "real jobs"; as opposed to you know, "fake jobs", like pro-musicians facepalm. Now I'm not telling anyone how to spend their money but why do so many people in this category think they can only buy equipment from proceeds earned from their weekend warrior work? Isn't it the full time touring musicians or a pro studio owner that can directly attribute more income to having product X that NEED to justify a purchase ? IMO they're making most of these fun toys for us hobbyist. idea And we'll often buy them as long as somewhere in the manual it says "for pro use". Btw I know all about the wife and kids and all that. Of course Pros don't have any of this rolleyes.

- Comments regarding home studio setups:
"Isn't that keyboard placed too low (or too high) to play it comfortably?"
"Why are your monitors so close together? Or so close to the wall, or corners? Why is your ceiling so low?" (my favorite)
etc.
Fact: It's my FRIGG'N HOME DUMMY! Other people actually live here! mad saber wacko
puff guinness Ahhhhhh.

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Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
dboomer #3042674 05/08/20 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by dboomer
Originally Posted by Markyboard
- Keep unbalanced cables to 10 feet maximum. This came up recently in regard to studio application. I have yet to see any difference between a 1 foot cable and a 20-25 foot cable. If you use decent shielded cable it makes no difference in practice under most "normal circumstances". Yes, RFI can bleed in and balanced certainly helps when it does, but does everyone really have a problem with RFI? I say try it first. I won't speak to live applications where hostile environments prevail.
.

I guess your qualifier “I have yet to see any difference” determines how you think about this. It is quite easily measured, but if you don’t hear it then I guess for you it doesn’t matter.

I assume you mean measuring S/N. Are you claiming that a 10' shielded cable automatically gives you a better S/N over 25'? Because I'm pretty sure if no RFI or low frequency coupling is present or penetrating the shield then whatever difference you see will be true for a 10' vs 25' balanced cable as well.

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042684 05/08/20 04:54 PM
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LOVE this thread. I am sure I will think of more - 40+ years as a guitar tech will do that to you. Meanwhile...

Absurd statement - "Active pickups sound harsh and nasty."

OK, EMG is largely responsible for creating this myth. The original installation instructions from EMG for many of their pickups contains a fatal flaw. Since the magnets in EMG pickups are not strong, it is possible to adjust the pickups very close to the strings and improve the signal to noise ratio. This is exactly what the installation instructions advised

True, as far as it goes. First, the signal to noise ratio with EMG pickups has never been a problem. They are very quiet. Second, the balance between strings is compromised when you set the pickups too close. Third, MOST pickups (active AND passive) sound harsher and nastier the closer you get them to the strings, period. Pickups with strong magnetic fields will even cause intonation and sustain problems.

The solution is super simple but apparently nobody pays any attention to the obvious. LOWER the pickups!!!!! Repeat - LOWER the pickups.

I've been using EMG pickups in all my electric guitars since the 1980's. I followed their instructions at first and my workaround at that time was to - "Adjust the tone controls on my amp."
Ummm... duh?

I could be wrong but time and again I've found that guitarists don't seem to have a grasp of what tone controls on amps do. They are there so you can adjust the sound of the amp to the sound of your guitar. Still unhappy? Try changing the speaker!!!! That can be a miracle all it's own.

Then the lightbulb went off in my tiny brain, almost blew a fuse but it wasn't connected to anything anyway. I lowered my pickups and turned the amp up a bit. Much better!!!!
More even response and much better tone.

In the end, there is a universal answer to most questions like this. "LISTEN!!!! Consider. Adjust."


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Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042697 05/08/20 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Markyboard
- Keep unbalanced cables to 10 feet maximum. This came up recently in regard to studio application. I have yet to see any difference between a 1 foot cable and a 20-25 foot cable.

Whether it matters depends on the signal source's output impedance, and the amount of cable capacitance. A passive guitar pickup will be subjected to 25 times more cable capacitance with a 25 foot cable than a 1 foot cable. This acts like a secondary tone control that reduces high-frequency response if the guitar is feeding a high-impedance input. Some guitarists actually use long cables as a "feature" because the high-frequency dulling can sound better with distortion.

Quote
- Speaking of cables...building your own is way cheaper or "I saved so much money". Maybe if you're using the crapiest connectors and cabling. I build all my own cables because I like the neatness of custom lengths. But its not cheap, especially if you add in the expense of soldering iron and other tools needed not to mention the time involved.

It's certainly not way cheaper, but if someone wants the neatness of custom lengths, the Planet Waves cable kits don't require a soldering iron, and come with an insulation stripper that saves a lot of time. It's what I use for cables because I can put together a custom-length cable in literally under 3 minutes The cost ends up being about $16 for an 8' cable.

Quote
- The less devices connected to USB the better performance I get from my computer or ...use standard midi connectors through an interface when possible. No details ever provided on drivers or that maybe the individuals PC just sucks. I've found no difference in using USB and I've got at least 10 devices all working real time. But seems people love to chant this mantra.

This is an "it depends" situation. USB devices share the bandwidth on a hub, so if you're connecting lots of MIDI devices, it's not an issue because they're low bandwidth. But bandwidth available to each device will be reduced if you have lots of high-bandwidth devices. Also, adding 1.1 devices to 2.0, or 2.0 devices to 3.0, is different. With 1.1 plugged into 2.0, a transaction translator translates the 1.1 data to 2.0 signals (it doesn't improve the speed, it allows compatibility). However the standard design uses a single transaction translator to handle all the data streams, which produces a bandwidth bottleneck. More advanced designs use multi transaction translators to avoid this limitation. Finally, unpowered hubs may or may not be able to provide enough power for multiple USB devices.

And regarding this one from Notes: "The 'el cheapo' cables are just as good as the mid priced ones." This depends on whether you're talking about sound or durability. The best-sounding 1/4" cables I have in my studio for passive guitar pickups are incredibly flimsy cheapo cables that were made by Mattel, that I picked up surplus for 50 cents each. They wouldn't last for two minutes on stage, but the shielding is so crappy and minimal there's hardly any cable capacitance. So even with really high-impedance pickups, there's no hit on the treble response.

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Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042699 05/08/20 05:28 PM
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True cable story: Many years ago in a Chicago studio, two musicians were arguing vehemently about whether cables affected your sound or not. One was adamant that it made a big difference, the other that it made no difference at all.

I pointed to the guy who said it made a big difference and said "you play guitar, and the other guy plays keyboards. Right?" They were totally taken aback. "How did you know?!?" smile

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Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042705 05/08/20 06:01 PM
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My favorite cable story happened many years ago at NAMM. Visiting the Monster cable booth I noticed they had cables marked Guitar, Bass and Keyboard. I asked their rep in the booth ( to be fair likely some junior marketing guy) what was the difference between them. He told me Keyboard players played different notes than guitar players. I asked, “You mean like H &I?”

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042708 05/08/20 06:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Markyboard
I assume you mean measuring S/N. Are you claiming that a 10' shielded cable automatically gives you a better S/N over 25'? Because I'm pretty sure if no RFI or low frequency coupling is present or penetrating the shield then whatever difference you see will be true for a 10' vs 25' balanced cable as well.

That would be the case. However I was mainly referring to the fact that the longer the cable the more high frequency response will be lost. This ALWAYS happens. Whether you can hear it or not or whether it bothers you or not is subjective

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
dboomer #3042716 05/08/20 06:52 PM
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Originally Posted by dboomer
I asked, “You mean like H &I?”

Ha!!!

My favorite questionable cable claim is that they have to be patched in a particular direction. I had no idea it was possible to make cables where all those little electrons have to work their way down a one-way street.

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Anderton #3042718 05/08/20 07:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Anderton
Originally Posted by dboomer
I asked, “You mean like H &I?”

Ha!!!

My favorite questionable cable claim is that they have to be patched in a particular direction. I had no idea it was possible to make cables where all those little electrons have to work their way down a one-way street.

I read an article in Tape Op magazine, an interview with the engineer who ran David Gilmour's studio - which is on a houseboat on the Thames.
One of the things he discussed was the (I am paraphrasing a bit here, strictly from memory) $10,000 speaker cables and how they sounded better when installed in one direction as opposed to the other direction.

Seems unlikely, to say the least. Ha!!! indeed...


There is never enough time to be in a hurry...
Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042722 05/08/20 07:17 PM
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Regarding the cable discussion above, my bad forgetting I'm posting in a world where people pluck wires, rubber bands or strings across strange elongated wooden stick with pregnant/bulbous end. The comment came up on KC recently regarding synths in a home studio environment where you're dealing with low impedance outputs and plenty of signal - even for those lower level output devices.


Originally Posted by Anderton
Quote
- The less devices connected to USB the better performance I get from my computer or ...use standard midi connectors through an interface when possible. No details ever provided on drivers or that maybe the individuals PC just sucks. I've found no difference in using USB and I've got at least 10 devices all working real time. But seems people love to chant this mantra.

This is an "it depends" situation. USB devices share the bandwidth on a hub, so if you're connecting lots of MIDI devices, it's not an issue because they're low bandwidth. But bandwidth available to each device will be reduced if you have lots of high-bandwidth devices. Also, adding 1.1 devices to 2.0, or 2.0 devices to 3.0, is different. With 1.1 plugged into 2.0, a transaction translator translates the 1.1 data to 2.0 signals (it doesn't improve the speed, it allows compatibility). However the standard design uses a single transaction translator to handle all the data streams, which produces a bandwidth bottleneck. More advanced designs use multi transaction translators to avoid this limitation. Finally, unpowered hubs may or may not be able to provide enough power for multiple USB devices.

Regarding the USB discussion I believe I've seen this numerous times for what I assumed was midi devices only on USB; not audio or anything else of higher bandwidth. But point taken and thanks for enlightening me on this 2thu.

My comments regarding cables were for high quality build your own using a soldering iron vs high quality store bought. I buy solder type components in bulk to reduce cost but failed to consider other options. I assume people making these cost claims are comparing apples to apples/// err.... pc to pc, but maybe not.

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042733 05/08/20 08:07 PM
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As a reminder this thread is aimed towards forums (here or elsewhere) where "questionable" information is often repeated as fact. I expect manufacturers, marketers, advertisers to promote unsubstantiated claims.

OK try this one: Keyboard dust covers to protect sensitive electronic components from damage. I know, here comes the thermal/heat build up argument blah blah blah . Again I'm thinking studio. If you have to leave your stuff set up in a bar, oasys or sawmill then maybe? I'm sorry, these things are stupid, more of a hassle to get going each day and they are a frigg'n WASTE OF MONEY!

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042743 05/08/20 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Markyboard
Regarding the cable discussion above, my bad forgetting I'm posting in a world where people pluck wires, rubber bands or strings across strange elongated wooden stick with pregnant/bulbous end.

All this time, I thought it was six monophonic oscillators on a plank of wood, with a 6 dB/octave low pass filter smile

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Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042744 05/08/20 09:39 PM
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I think it would be people who go all adamant over filters. Its probably far worse with modular players. I can certainly appreciate having notch or high-pass filters on a whim, as I remember struggling with only low-pass in that certain era of synths. That's part of why I still praise the Juno-1/2. Its main filter was low-pass, but there was a non-resonant high-pass as well. That made it ideal for bridging certain clarity gaps in a stacked sound.

However, I've heard that cable argument run through the, um, Filter filter and I always end up saying "What are you, a dolphin? How does that minimal shading make the music itself any better?" As above, they always turn and stare.

George Carlin said "Life is a series of dogs." Synthesis is like that: a series of synths, odd pianos, interfaces, cables, stands and software in a slow but still tornadic funnel cloud. KB-Mag is part of how I came to learn what was valid & what was mostly a sales pitch. Most importantly, I bought crap keys (or underdeveloped too-soon items like Kawai's K5) until I got pissed and bought a proper Korg workstation. That's where all I'd learned started to click. Many of the elements of false canon fall away once you dig into the reality. I always tell newbies "Buy the mid-range or better. The low end gear usually sounds good, but the limitations & budget builds will get under your skin. Start more upscale & branching out will take care of itself."


Scotch whiskey is made from barley & the morning dew on angels' nipples. ~ Warren Ellis

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Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Anderton #3042747 05/08/20 09:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Anderton
Originally Posted by Markyboard
Regarding the cable discussion above, my bad forgetting I'm posting in a world where people pluck wires, rubber bands or strings across strange elongated wooden stick with pregnant/bulbous end.

All this time, I thought it was six monophonic oscillators on a plank of wood, with a 6 dB/octave low pass filter smile

If only they had included a Fastpass filter for those electrons that don’t want to wait in line. stooges

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042751 05/08/20 10:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Markyboard
Originally Posted by Anderton
Originally Posted by Markyboard
Regarding the cable discussion above, my bad forgetting I'm posting in a world where people pluck wires, rubber bands or strings across strange elongated wooden stick with pregnant/bulbous end.

All this time, I thought it was six monophonic oscillators on a plank of wood, with a 6 dB/octave low pass filter smile

If only they had included a Fastpass filter for those electrons that don’t want to wait in line. stooges

But that really matters only on unidirectional cables that you must patch in a certain direction. Then again, the point is moot for now. The electrons have to stand six feet apart, that's why the internet is so slow.

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042753 05/08/20 10:51 PM
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BUT!!!!

I realized that I actually created a cable where it DID matter which end connected to the guitar, and which to the amp.

I made a guitar interface for Maschine so you could plug the guitar into the dynamic mic input, and use all of Maschine's processing to create insanely cool parallel effects. But, the mic input had too much gain, and too low an impedance. So I soldered a resistor into the plug that goes into Maschine. You don't want to attenuate the signal at the guitar end, because now you have a lower-level signal traveling along your cable, making it more susceptible to picking up interference. As a result the plug without a resistor goes into the guitar, and the plug with a resistor plugs into Maschine...where it belongs smile

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042758 05/09/20 12:47 AM
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I'm intrigued by synth folks who talk about "listening to a raw oscillator", since I'm not certain if such a thing is practically possible. I mean, sure - you can measure one on an oscilloscope...but, without that darn VCA, ain't nobody listening to nothing as far as I can tell...unless you count routing different types of oscillators through the same system on a modular rig. confused

...and that's another thing - everybody loves to talk about different VCOs and VCFs, but why do VCAs never get any love? idk

dB

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Dave Bryce #3042759 05/09/20 02:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Dave Bryce
I'm intrigued by synth folks who talk about "listening to a raw oscillator", since I'm not certain if such a thing is practically possible. I mean, sure - you can measure one on an oscilloscope...but, without that darn VCA, ain't nobody listening to nothing as far as I can tell...unless you count routing different types of oscillators through the same system on a modular rig. confused

...and that's another thing - everybody loves to talk about different VCOs and VCFs, but why do VCAs never get any love? idk

dB

You’re right and I agree this is often overblown without consideration for other influences in the signal path. You can’t listen to an oscillator without at least the VCA and often a filter in the path as well. But with modular and many semi-modulars you can easily compare the sound influence of different oscillators leaving the filter and VCA unchanged. I’ll sometimes connect a modular oscillator output to the external input of a non-modular synth. Sometimes the difference between it an the on-board oscillators are quite different even with the same wave shape. Modular “complex” oscillators tend to be more interesting than most on-board oscillators. But then some of these are really more than just oscillators.

Just like with certain preamps and amps certain VCAs can impart a unique character on the overall synth sound. It mostly has to do with how they respond to saturation. Admittedly I haven’t personally confirmed the VCA responsible for a particular sound character so perhaps I’m just further spreading gospel nono. But I do strongly suspect this to be the case with the Memorymoog.

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042760 05/09/20 02:15 AM
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There are different ways to do VCAs. There was the RCA 3080 transconductance amp, discrete versions, photo-resistors, ICs like those made by SSM, the Signetics 570...the list goes on. And I listen to "raw" waveforms all the time, Studio One has a tone generator.

But it really doesn't make any difference in terms of the emotional impact of the music smile

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What about speaker or headphone "burn-in"? Is that a myth or not?

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Originally Posted by Markyboard
As a reminder this thread is aimed towards forums (here or elsewhere) where "questionable" information is often repeated as fact. I expect manufacturers, marketers, advertisers to promote unsubstantiated claims.

OK try this one: Keyboard dust covers to protect sensitive electronic components from damage. I know, here comes the thermal/heat build up argument blah blah blah . Again I'm thinking studio. If you have to leave your stuff set up in a bar, oasys or sawmill then maybe? I'm sorry, these things are stupid, more of a hassle to get going each day and they are a frigg'n WASTE OF MONEY!

Not sure about actual damage to the electronic components, since one would hope those would already be encased or shielded. I use dust covers because there is, in fact, dust that can get in-between the keys and in the faders and whatnot. Ever lived in a house with tongue and groove flooring? If someone walks on the 2nd floor above the music area, dust rains down on everything (lightly, but still, over time you really notice). We use lens covers, eyeglass cloths/cases, and raincoats, so why not keyboard covers? I mean if you're playing every single board every day and live alone, there might not be as much of a need. But otherwise? Just keeps things cleaner.

By the way, if you're good at sewing, you can make custom covers that look way better than the flat black stretchy ones.


Yamaha: Motif XF8/YS200/CVP-305/CLP-130/YPG-235/PSR-295/PSS-470
Korg: Krome 61
Kurzweil: PC3
Roland: JV-1000
Casio: CT-370
Kimball Valencia/Broadway/Conn 465/WCOC Reed Organ/Allen ADC-220/Accordions
Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Groove On #3042787 05/09/20 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Groove On
What about speaker or headphone "burn-in"? Is that a myth or not?

I did it with my AKG K240 Studio headphones, but listened before and afterward. I think it did a little in terms of evening out the frequency response so it wasn't as harsh, and a lot of places online say it does something. Maybe not the largest difference, but I don't think it's a myth exactly.


Yamaha: Motif XF8/YS200/CVP-305/CLP-130/YPG-235/PSR-295/PSS-470
Korg: Krome 61
Kurzweil: PC3
Roland: JV-1000
Casio: CT-370
Kimball Valencia/Broadway/Conn 465/WCOC Reed Organ/Allen ADC-220/Accordions
Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Groove On #3042788 05/09/20 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Groove On
What about speaker or headphone "burn-in"? Is that a myth or not?

I've broken-in guitar speakers in before, by playing them at gigs. It isn't a dramatic change, the attack is a bit less "barky" and the low end is smoother but not a great deal.

https://celestion.com/speakerworld/guitartech/3/104/How_to_break-in_a_guitar_speaker/

https://www.klipsch.com/blog/how-and-why-to-break-in-your-new-speakers

Headphones may be a different animal. I have a new pair right now and they sound perfectly fine. Eventually I might notice a difference, I doubt they change significantly.

I do have an old Austrian made pair of AKG K240 with the 1/4" stereo phone plug that sound great but I have no idea how they sounded when they were new decades ago.

So the answer is "Not a myth for some speakers but nothing to worry about."

If a speaker doesn't sound great when it's new it seems unlikey that it will sound great after breaking it in. So choose a different one that you like.


There is never enough time to be in a hurry...
Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Markyboard #3042796 05/09/20 11:02 AM
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2 more for modular synths - first one mostly aimed at my fellow KC-ers who are predominantly trained musicians:

- Modular Synths are for "bleeps and blips" and doing sequencer stuff. While this can be and is often true the sentiment is that they are made exclusively for this purpose. Modulars can be anything you want them them to be; They can be "conventional synths" with many unique features and SOUND that you won't typically find in fixed architecture/conventional synths. I use mine almost exclusively as a tool box similar to how audio guys use 500 series modules. I like adding way more interesting modulations to my conventional synths than what's provided on-board. And I "play" those modulations in real time with foot pedals, AT, wheels etc. along with all those strange white and black switches. I almost never use a sequencer except on rare occasion where I'm exploring something from that angle. And it's frigg'n hardware for you die-hard-ware folks who hate VSTs.

- Modular will suck you down an endless money pit. Doesn't have to and it depends on what you're planning to use modular for; do you know? Do some research and do some more before buying anything. It took me more than a few weeks. I went through it a second time almost 2 years later building a second skiff with all different modules to enhance a stack of synths on the other side of my room. But that's it - I haven't updated, added or regretted anything after completing each skiff. Actually I did make a few adjustments for each build early on but both have been good for a couple of years now with no desire to change anything. Space limitations can be a good thing.

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
Mighty Motif Max #3042798 05/09/20 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Mighty Motif Max
Not sure about actual damage to the electronic components, since one would hope those would already be encased or shielded. I use dust covers because there is, in fact, dust that can get in-between the keys and in the faders and whatnot. Ever lived in a house with tongue and groove flooring? If someone walks on the 2nd floor above the music area, dust rains down on everything (lightly, but still, over time you really notice). We use lens covers, eyeglass cloths/cases, and raincoats, so why not keyboard covers? I mean if you're playing every single board every day and live alone, there might not be as much of a need. But otherwise? Just keeps things cleaner.

Ah...you reminded me of my POS house in Buena Park, CA with t&g ceiling; no insulation, just asphalt shingles on top. I would find these piles of sawdust/wood shavings on equipment infrequently not knowing where it came from for several months. Until one day I got up on a step ladder and examined the ceiling above a recently formed pile and saw this little "leg" flicking back and forth. Termites! It took tenting the place 3 times and finally a new roof to solve the problem.

So yeah, I see your point. Same way I wouldn't tell someone not to buy a few pails because their pipes are leaking. poke grin

Re: Fact Checker: Dispelling Forum "Gospel"
dboomer #3042808 05/09/20 12:52 PM
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Originally Posted by dboomer
Originally Posted by Markyboard
- Keep unbalanced cables to 10 feet maximum. This came up recently in regard to studio application. I have yet to see any difference between a 1 foot cable and a 20-25 foot cable. If you use decent shielded cable it makes no difference in practice under most "normal circumstanYes,
.

I guess your qualifier “I have yet to see any difference” determines how you think about this. It is quite easily measured, but if you don’t hear it then I guess for you it doesn’t matter.

There are a number of things in a cable that could possibly affect sound such as resistance, inductance, capacitance between conductors and conductor and shield, and, for high frequency (higher than audio, but maybe applicable to MIDI or digital audio connections), velocity factor of the dielectric material. However, the actual affect on sound, for many characteristics, is very difficult to measure.

If you find a cable that you think makes what goes through it sound better, then by all means, use it if you can afford it. But it's a long path between the mic cable and the end listener's loudspeaker or headphones. Nobody will ever say "this would have sounded a lot better if he used a better mic cable."

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