Friday, January 14, 2005

Active Listening/Using your Ears

In transferring from recording to another, "the worker should be actively listening from beginning to the end." [i.e. take bathroom breaks before you start, don't talk to other workers while they're in the middle of something unless it's important].

I'm supposed to be listening for:
1) Correct playback speed, tracking configuration (for discs), and direction of sound.
2) Changes in speed. Does speed and pitch gradually rise? Does speed change drastically and abruptly in the middle of a tape?
3) Significant changes in level/volume. Are these level changes because of a performer? Or adjustments made by the collector because they realized their volume levels were too low?
4) Changes in high frequency content as time plays. Does tape become progressive more muffled?
5) Distortion, hum, and other problems with sonic content.
6) Preservation problems: squeeling from the ape, significant dropping out of content.
7) The content itself--Music or speaking, etc. Gather information for sheets or for "dropping" (placing) markers.

When good tape goes bad...or potential preservation problems that would cause me to stop the transfer:

1) Squealing sounds from an open reel or cassette tape.
2) Jerking, sticking and releasing, stopping and starting, or coming to a stop by itself. [I think the tape's trying to tell us something.]
3) Extensive shedding of oxide and/or backing.
4) Tracking problems on a disc. The needle skips, jumps, or fails to stay in the grooves.
5) Problems with the sound on a tape or disc. Unusual noises, unusually low levels.
6) Anything that strikes you as unusual or that you do not understand [caveat: he probably means something related to this process, and not my imperfect understanding of the world such that it is].

More fun later, transduction, input monitors, output buses, patch bays, and psychoacoustics.


Post a Comment

<< Home