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Designing Web Audio & CD-ROM by Dylan Thede, Josh Beggs

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Chapter 3. Capturing Original Source Material

The challenge to good recording is reproducing as accurately as possible a sound source without introducing system noise, distortion, or other unwanted artifacts. In theory, capturing sound is a relatively simple process: set up a microphone, run it through a microphone pre-amp or a mixing console, connect the output to a sound card or a digital tape machine, adjust the input level, and press record.

In the real world, however, good recording is complicated by elements such as wind, crowd noise, poor room reflections, sudden volume peaks, and the wide tonal range of musical instruments and voices. The tools for preventing or overcoming these obstacles are proper equipment and good recording techniques.

Whether you are adding rollover sound effects, background music loops, or narration to your site, the first step is to gather your source material. Music and sound effects can be collected easily from prerecorded, royalty-free music or sound effects libraries. However, if you are recording voice-over narration, a live concert, or an on-location interview, you will have to record the sound yourself.

Selecting the right equipment

Using the appropriate equipment helps you produce high-quality audio. Resolution is the key difference between low-end and high-end audio gear. Professional-grade audio equipment captures higher fidelity sound and preserves the subtleties and nuances of the original source without adding unwanted system noise or distortion. ...

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