Ask the Doctors

UA's Art and Science of Modeling UAD Plug-Ins, Part 2

Posted by James Douglas on August 21, 2012 11:55:48 AM PDT

Get deep with UA’s Chief Scientist and Consulting Professor at Stanford University's CCRMA, Dr. Dave Berners, and Software Product Manager Will Shanks about the mathematical processes and methods used to create Universal Audio’s industry-leading plug-ins, renowned for imparting the same rich vintage warmth of the analog hardware they emulate.

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To The Limit — 'Dynamic Range' and the Loudness War

Posted by Emmanuel Deruty (Sound on Sound) on July 20, 2012 3:31:52 PM PDT

We all know music is getting louder. But is it less dynamic? Read on as Sound on Sound’s Emmanuel Deruty argues that ground-breaking research proves beyond any doubt that the answer is no — and that popular beliefs about the ‘loudness war’ need a radical rethink.

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Psychoacoustics: Where Sound Meets Your Brain

Posted by Emmanuel Deruty (Sound on Sound) on June 19, 2012 10:37:16 AM PDT

The most important pieces of hardware in any studio are the ones on the sides of your head. In this article from Sound on Sound magazine, we'll take a close look at the ear — how it converts physical sound waves into sonic information in the brain, and how this process has numerous practical consequences for music production.

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UA's Art and Science of Modeling UAD Plug-Ins, Part 1 of 2

Posted by James Douglas on July 25, 2010 11:15:24 AM PDT

For anyone observing music recording over the past 20 years, audio technology has evolved at a mind-boggling pace. Giant tape machines, consoles, and racks filled with gear have quickly given way to sleek desktops, laptops and even tablets. Yet while workstation technology has made some older audio equipment obsolete, the lure of certain vintage analog hardware endures.

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The Inner Workings of the Moog Multimode Filter

Posted by Dr. David Berners on May 26, 2010 7:33:00 AM PDT

The Moog four-pole resonant filter is a classic design with a distinctive, characteristic sound. Structurally, the filter is formed by placing four identical one-pole filters in cascade (see Figure 1) and creating a feedback loop around them. As the amount of feedback is increased from zero, the (initially coincident) closed-loop poles of the system diverge, with two poles becoming increasingly resonant.

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Capturing Distinctive Compressors in a Digital Emulation

Posted by Dr. Dave Berners & Dr. Jonathan Abel on August 26, 2009 4:11:11 AM PDT

Q: What is it about the 1176LN and LA-2A compressors that makes them distinctive sounding? How can these distinctive properties be captured in a digital emulation?


A: To answer that, let’s give a brief overview of what compression is, and then focus on the special properties of these two compressors that give them their unique flavors.


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Answers to All Your Signal Processing Questions

Posted by Dr. Dave Berners & Dr. Jonathan Abel on July 22, 2009 4:11:11 AM PDT

Q: How are digital mastering EQs different from digital tracking/mixing EQs?

A: Historically, in terms of application, the mastering EQ is required to achieve high fidelity, offer a wide range of center frequencies for EQ features, provide good agreement between left and right channels, and allow for easy recall of exact settings. The particular curves picked for the EQ should be designed to work well for program material.

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Oversampled Peak Detection

Posted by Dr. Dave Berners on June 24, 2009 4:11:11 AM PDT

Q: How does oversampled peak detection work?

A: Oversampling is sometimes used in order to improve the accuracy of peak level estimates for sampled signals. The idea is that when a signal is sampled, there may be no samples taken at or near the peak values of the signal. When this happens, the maximum sample-values will not be equal (or close) to the peak values of the signal.

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Wiggly Frequency Response and the Cooper Time Cube

Posted by Dr. Dave Berners on May 27, 2009 4:11:11 AM PDT

The Cooper Time Cube is famous for its spectacular short delay and doubling effects, and its uncanny ability to always sit perfectly in the mix. The Cooper Time Cube plug-in’s delay element has a rather “wiggly” frequency response. The high-frequency and large-scale, low-frequency variations are modeling hardware frequency responses that are largely due to the characteristics of the transducers and the cavities in which they sit.

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