We support teachers of music and music technology.
We can advise on what equipment and facilities you will require to deliver a course or qualification effectively, and in many instances provide on-site training to teachers, technicians and other support staff in the use of modern technology for music and music tech.
We can also provide delivery advice on a whole range of units in vocational music and music technology qualifications at levels 1, 2 & 3.
Check out our series of equipment and software reviews
With over 20 years experience in music and music technology education, and much, much longer in the music industry as a whole we may have the answers you need - try us...
-The Music Ed Team
(reviewed by John Verity)
Street price in the UK at time of review £370.00
Sturdily built into a compact (514mm wide/ 340mm front to back) package powered by a small wall-wart type power supply the unit is impressive straight out of the box.
The ability to record 24 tracks at a useful range of bitrates to an SD card makes the unit's potential in the education sector obvious.
Well known in the world of portastudios, Tascam have vast experience in this area and have come up with a package which looks to be much simpler in layout than many predecessors. This making for an attractive proposition for the classroom and performance space, whilst still having a good range of facilities to appeal to more experienced recordists.
8 tracks can be recorded simultaneously, making the recording of full ensemble/band performances a possibility, with the ability to mix/sweeten the recordings at a later date, and add further tracks up to a total of 24 where required. There are 24 channel faders - 12 mono and 6 stereo faders plus the master fader in typical fashion, with a master control for monitor level at the far right of the front panel. There are 8 mic/line inputs on the rear of the unit accessed via XLR/Jack combi connectors with one input selectable to a high impedance jack input for guitar or bass.
The socket for the included PSU is located at the far left looking from behind the unit, close to the facility to security-lock the unit, however there doesn't appear to be the ability to secure the power lead into the socket which could be a problem - Students beware!
TRS jacks for monitor outputs, a pair of mono effects sends and the main stereo outputs (phono) are clearly labelled, and finally the SD card slot, micro USB and power switch are located in the raised section behind the display housing.
The front panel above each of the first eight channels houses the input trim, phantom power switching (arranged in 2 banks of four).
Finally these 8 channels have buttons for source, record arm and select. The selected channel has it's current settings displayed, and allows access to the eq, pan and effects section.
As indicated earlier in this piece, the uncomplicated layout makes it possible to concentrate on the creative aspects of recording. With this in mind it is important to stress that everything a learner is likely to need to produce technically competent recordings is right here in this unit. A choice of Reverb, Delay, and Chorus effects via effect send 1 plus assignable multi-effects including the control of dynamics make stand-alone use of the unit a viable option, though the ability to transfer raw recorded tracks to a favourite DAW using the SD card means learners are not limited to the effects contained in the unit.
Recordings made by this reviewer in the course of preparing this piece are technically sound and were made with the minimum of fuss.
There is much more to this unit than time has allowed me to explore, and I feel sure that it will be a valuable tool for many in the creation of technical and performance work. Composers will be able to prepare examples of their work to a high standard and collaborate where required, again with the minimum of fuss.
In terms of level, the Tascam DP-24SD is simple enough to operate for learners at lower levels, but has enough potential to be useful to the learner creating work at the highest level, to the standard expected.
The build quality is to the high standard to be expected from this manufacturer, with results to match. Highly recommended.
IZOTOPE OZONE 8 Update
(Reviewed by John Verity)
Ozone 8 Standard Education: £216.58
Ozone 8 Advanced Education: £433.98
Well developed mastering skills are essential for learners focusing on music technology at all levels, and Ozone software has been at the forefront of technology in this area for some considerable time.
Operationally, Ozone version 8 is very similar to its predecessor Ozone 7 and for this reason I have simply focussed on the newest elements available, and included my earlier Ozone 7 review below this update for reference...
Ozone 8 introduces us to Master Assistant, a plugin designed to intelligently assist with eq and dynamics settings to create a starting point for the piece being worked on.
The process is simple, giving the learner option to load presets or a reference track of their choice, then play back a short (preferably at its loudest point) section of their own project. Master Assistant will compare the two, and set up/ load recommended EQ & Dynamics modules to suit.
In the process of writing this review I utilised Master Assistant across a number of genre with mixed success. Whilst appropriate modules were generally loaded automatically I didn't always feel that settings were particularly successful, though with a little tweaking acceptable results were pretty much always reachable. Certainly Master Assistant can create useful starting points but could lead to problems for the inexperienced learner.
HOFA SYSTEM Plug-in modules. (reviewed by John Verity)
20 modules which can be combined or used separately.
Reverb, delay, EQ, compression, distortion, pitch, expander, gate, gain, pan, metering, pink noise, modulation, and more....
HOFA System provides most of what we have come to consider our essential plug-ins for day-to-day studio work, all at a current introductory price of €59.90.
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