DAC and MIDI

A little busy prepping for the move to my new place on Tuesday, so I haven’t been able to get any progress done on that track. I have however found some affordable hardware that will increase your productivity, even through Android.

USB Digital to Analog Converter

The first is a device called a USB DAC (Digital to Analog Converter). As I mentioned in a previous post the headphones jacks found on android devices, PC’s and other media devices just barely deliver what is considered acceptable sound quality . These devices are superior stand alone sound cards/amplifiers that connect to your device via USB (who would have guessed). They supply much better sound quality and can be very beneficial for production, especially if you are restricted to using headphones. I may shortly invest in a VERY budget one since I have noticed that Bass comes through much stronger on my PC than it does through my Kindle Fire, and I would at least like some more continuity.

Here is a nice little guide with more information on the devices: http://lifehacker.com/5903575/unleash-your-headphones-full-potential-with-a-usb-dac-and-amplifier

USB DAC

Muse HiFi PCM2047 USB DAC

Midi Controller

Midi controllers can come in many different forms: mixing boards, keyboards, drumpads etc. They hook up to your Digital Audio Work station and immensely help streamline music production. Instead of clicking where you want to sequence notes, they allow you record in real time. There are plenty of resources out there on how they work and why you want them. I specifically would like to get an Akai MPK Mini. It’s an affordable midi keyboard with drum pads. Midi keyboards work with Caustic 2, but I understand that Drum Pad mapping will be available in future updates. Don’t know what drum pads are? Check out the Su-Preme MPA app in my Apps page.

Note that Midi controllers are not viable unless you have a low audio latency device. Right now with my Kindle Fire it is at 160ms, which will not work for live recording. You want closer to <20ms.

Akai MPC Midi

 Akai MPK Mini: http://www.akaipro.com/mpkmini

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