Universal Audio WebZine
Volume 4, Number 6, August 2006
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UA Universe
By Marsha Vdovin, Joseph Lemmer, Sean Lamb, and Tom Freeman

Employee Feature: Production Trainer/Assembler, Louisa Torres

Production Trainer/Assembler, Louisa Torres
What's your official job title at UA?
Production Trainer/Assembler.

What do you do at UA?
Training production employees with an emphasis on quality; including but not limited to hardware subassemblies and final assemblies. I also inspect the subassemblies and final assemblies to make sure they meet UA's quality standards. I work on products such as the 6176, 2-610, LA-610, 2-1176, 1176 and 8110/4110 units.

So where are you from?
I am from Guadalajara, Mexico.

How long have you worked at Universal Audio?
I have been working here for three years.

What type of work did you do before UA?
I previously worked as a mechanical assembler at Emu, doing work like prepping a chassis with a power supply, main board, etc. I built modules like the Proteus, Orbit, Carnival and Planet Phatt as well as samplers such as the E64.

What do you like about your job?
I like my manager, supervisor, and my co-workers.

What kind of music do you like?
I like cumbias, salsa, rap, oldies, pop music and rock, whether it is in English or Spanish.

What are your hobbies?
My main hobbies have been playing basketball (we have a biweekly game here at UA!) and spending time with my husband and kids, doing things like going to the park.

Do you have a favorite "Santa Cruz" moment?
I like going to the Santa Cruz Beach and Boardwalk with my family.

Will you tell us about your family?
My whole family is the most important thing in my life, but especially my husband Jose, my daughter Vanessa, and my son Jose Angel.


Upcoming Events . . .

Moscone Convention Center Entrance
121st AES Convention
AES returns to San Francisco's Moscone Convention Center this year from Friday, October 6 to Sunday, October 8. Watch this space for more information.

UA Cosponsors Recording Magazine Great Gear Giveaway
Please check out Recording Magazine's Great Gear Giveaway! The grand-prize winner will take home a UAD-1 Ultra PAK, a SOLO/610, and a lot of great stuff from Shure, Yamaha, Disc Makers, and Berkleemusic.

Young Film Composers Competition Finals August 4, 2006
The second round of judging with Hans Zimmer as Judging Chair has taken place and five finalists have been chosen. These finalists were given a new 90-second clip from the 1927 film The Show to score. The final round of judging will take place on August 4, and the grand-prize winner will receive $10,000 and will compose the entire score for the The Show.

The top five finalists are:

  • John King - Fort Wayne, IN
  • Darrell Raby - Los Angeles, CA (who won first place last year)
  • Miles Hankins - New York, NY
  • Jeffrey Kryka - Madison, WI
  • David Henry - Santa Barbara, CA


News & Schmooze . . .

SOLOs Now Shipping en Masse to Fantastic Public Response
One customer said, "If I had to sum up the performance of my SOLO/610 in one word, it would be WOWTHISTHINGISFRICKINAWESOMESOUNDING!"

Masses of SOLO/110s in burn-in before packing and shipping to a UA dealer near you.

UAD-1e PCI Express DSP Card ships
Joe Bryan and the rest of Universal Audio were understandably ecstatic as the first batch of UAD-1e cards left the building, on Friday July 21st. The UAD-1e offers the same award winning, five star reviewed, jaw dropping DSP platform as the UAD-1, in a PCIe package for the latest generation of computers.
UA's hand model joined fun as the UAD-1e shipped

UA Employee Does a Great Deed
UA's Elisa Alameda deserves big props for her recent trip to Mexico to help build houses. This is what she had to say about the trip: "From June 20th to June 25th a group of people and I, called Club Dust, went down to Tecate, Mexico, to build houses for families that have little or no money at all. This year we built seven houses total and donated thousands of pounds of food and clothing. Each team started out with just a concrete slab and from there built each family a house that had two very small rooms and a loft. The family that we were building for went from living in the grandmother's house, which was made out of scrap wood, garage doors and various other materials, to a house that they could feel safe in and call their own."
UA's Elisa Alameda and her husband Ryan (shown at right, pulling a nail out of his foot) helped build seven homes in Mexico with Club Dust from Santa Cruz

Team UA Golf Outing

Universal Audio's golf team played in their first-ever scramble event Saturday, July 22, 2006, at the Paso Robles Golf Club. The event was sponsored by one of our vendors and included lunch, a raffle and heat stroke.

We knew it was going to be hot, but we didn't know just how hot 115 degrees was. After all, we are from Santa Cruz, where 80 degrees is sweltering. We watched the temperature climb during our two-plus-hour drive down to Hell's furnace. When we arrived at 6:45 a.m. it was already 74 degrees. After practicing some putting and hitting a few balls at the driving range we knew we were in for a sweaty day.

The tournament started at 8:30 a.m. with carts racing across the course to their designated starting holes. I am not sure if Dana thought that we would get extra points if she beat everyone to the hole, but she weaved in and out of the carts like it was rush hour traffic.

Team UA: Rich, Paul, Sean, and Dana. "It was like playing inside a 2192!"
With one ball on the green on the first hole, it looked as if we should easily par, but our putters were a little cold and we bogeyed. The second hole was a wide open with a lone tree on the left side of the fairway. I have a theory about trees: they are 90 percent air. Unfortunately, I hit the 10 percent that was wood. Rich hit a nice drive, and we were able to par the hole. We searched for birdies all day, and only found one. Thanks to a nice chip shot by Paul, we were able to birdie the tenth hole.

As the day wore on, the heat kept rising. We searched for shade wherever we could. The last six holes were the hottest I have ever played. When the wind blew, it felt like some one was pointing a hair dryer at us. The clubs were hard to hold onto because of the sweat. The heat was draining our energy and shots were getting harder to come by. We drank tons of water and Gatorade to try to keep from dehydrating.

At the end of the round, we met the other teams at the clubhouse for a barbecue lunch and prize drawing. The food was good, but the air conditioning was better. Even though 5 over wasn't enough to win (6 under won), we felt as if finishing was a victory in itself. We all did win nice prizes in the raffle for our effort. Dana won a DVD player, Paul won a golf club, Rich got a dozen balls, and I got a gift certificate to Circuit City.

On the ride home, we watched as the temperature dropped back down to something more reasonable. We dipped below 100 about halfway home and got to a pleasant 72 degrees as we pulled into the driveway at my house.

We all had a great time, despite the heat, and know that if we have half the fun at our next outing, it will be a blast.

Tape Op Con 2006
Read the full report on Tape Op Con 2006 in this month's "Analog Obsession," including an audio interview with UA's Will Shanks and Dave Berners.
Joseph Lemmer and Dave Berners share their brilliance at the UA stand during Tape Op Con 2006.

Precision Multiband up for Tec Award
UA has been nominated for an industry TEC Award for the Precision Multiband plug-in for UAD-1. Keep an eye out for the ballot in Mix magazine and vote for UA early and often!

The final results will be revealed at Fall AES in San Francisco in October.


Tech Talk . . .

UA Phone System Outage
Please accept our apologies if you tried to call UA on Friday, July 21. Our phone system was down due to a citywide outage at our phone service provider's hub.

Sonar Error 21 Fix in Beta
We are pleased to announce that the close collaboration between Universal Audio and Cakewalk has resulted in a fix in the Sonar VST wrapper that is doing well in the beta stage of testing. If you are experiencing this error (21) with the software, please contact UA customer service.

UAD-1 Macintosh OS Support Change for UAD-1 Version 4.3
With UAD-1 software version 4.3, Universal Audio supports OS X Panther version 10.3.9 and OS X Tiger version 10.4.x operating systems. Earlier versions of Panther will no longer be supported. The latest version of Panther, 10.3.9, offers performance superior to that of its predecessors. Apple offers 10.3.9 as a free upgrade for existing Panther users. Simply select Software Update from the Apple pull-down menu in the Finder.

Also, as reported in the January WebZine, Universal Audio no longer supports Mac OS X Jaguar 10.2.x as of the release of UAD-1 software version 4.2. This will free up valuable engineering resources so they can focus on critical MacIntel support for UAD-1.


Press • Artist • Engineer • Producer Gossip . . .

Pandora's Music Box Inspires Fans
Westergren, the founder of seven-month-old music-discovery-engine Pandora, travels from town to town, sharing his time and story with fans who, because of his service, say they've rediscovered a love of newfound music.

Pandora is deceptively simple. For free, members can create any number of radio stations based on the sounds of a favorite song or artist, such as "Blackbird" by the Beatles or just the music of "Prince." Once the artist or song is found in the system, the station streams from the Web, within seconds, music that is rhythmically or artistically similar. Because of licensing restrictions, Pandora does not play any one song on demand.

Modern audio playback systems like those from Slim Devices already support Pandora.
(From C-NET, read more)

Engineers Reach Out to the Uninitiated on Field Trip
Some members of UA's Marketing Department took a field trip to Stanford's Center for Computer Research in Music and Audio (CCRMA).

MarCom Manager Joseph Lemmer, Marketing Assistant Kendra Boardman and Media Maven Marsha Vdovin were treated to a tour by one of UA's DSP Doctors, Jonathan Abel.

The controller for the first FM Synthesis machine. FM Synthesis was developed at Stanford by John Chowning
CCRMA has some specific instructions on the LA-2A
Some secret controller projects at CCRMA


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