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Effective: Summer 2015

Grade Type: Letter Grade, the student may select Pass/No Pass
Not Repeatable.
FHGE: Non-GE Transferable: CSU
3 hours lecture, 3 hours laboratory. (72 hours total per quarter)

Student Learning Outcomes -
  • A successful student will apply AAX plug ins directly to a track in a multitrack recording.
  • A successful student will explain equalization and compression techniques as standardized in the modern recording industry.
Description -
Creative applications of Pro Tools hardware and software Plug-Ins used in contemporary music production and sound design. Signal processing, equalization, compression, Beat Detective, distortion, reverb, delay, pitch correction, modulation, advanced plug-in automation techniques. Compare plug-ins and processors from different companies including Sonnox, McDSP, Massey, Avid, Antares and Waves. Waves Certification Program textbook provides high-quality, standardized means of mastering Waves plug-ins. Successful completion achieves Waves Certification Level A.

Course Objectives -
The student will be able to:
  1. Apply AAX and RTAS plug ins directly to a track in a multitrack recording.
  2. Apply AAX and RTAS plug ins to multiple tracks via busses and aux tracks in a multitrack recording.
  3. Explain equalization and compression techniques as standardized in the modern recording industry.
  4. Create a master track and apply various styles of mastering compression to the final mix.
  5. Pitch correct a vocal and instrumental track with Antares Auto Tune with no audible artifacts.
Special Facilities and/or Equipment -
  1. When taught on campus:
    1. Classroom with 31 Avid Pro Tools system and appropriate versions of Pro Tools.
    2. 31 Apple iMacs.
    3. Projection system for video and multimedia content.
    4. Waves Level I software bundle.
  2. When taught via Foothill Global Access:
    1. On-going access to computer with Email software and capabilities.
    2. Email address.
    3. Java-script enabled internet browsing software.

Course Content (Body of knowledge) -
  1. Applying AAX and RTAS plug-ins to a Pro Tools Session.
    1. Use and application of all Avid distributed plug-ins. (Lec, Lab)
    2. Use and application of all McDSP distrubuted plug-ins. (Lec, Lab)
    3. Antares Auto-Tune. (Lec, Lab)
  2. Creative application of AAX plug-ins.
    1. Applying pitch correction via Auto-Tune applied to vocals and solo instrumental tracks. (Lec, Lab)
    2. Design and application of groove quantization using Beat Detective to alter rhythmic characteristics of both MIDI, Virtual Instrument, and audio tracks. (Lec, Lab)
    3. Design and application of proper equalization and compression techniques. (Lec, Lab)
    4. Design and application of plug-in automation. (Lec, Lab)
Methods of Evaluation -
  1. Written examinations on plug-in parameters and application.
  2. Preparation and presentation of a recording edited and altered via the use of both AAX and RTAS plug ins.
  3. Lab assignments targeting specific plug in techniques.
  4. In person demonstration of plug in applications.
Representative Text(s) -
Waves. Waves Certification Level 1. Waves. 2014.
Other written materials provided by the instructor and delivered online.

Disciplines -
Music, Commercial  Music
Method of Instruction -
  1. Lecture presentations that demonstrate modern signal processing techniques.
  2. Classroom discussions that address the history and evolution of analog and digital signal processing as applied to music production and sound design for film and television.
  3. Group presentations followed by in-class discussion and evaluation.
Lab Content -
Lab content includes topics such as microphone modeling with DSP (digital signal processing), gain settings, monitor system setup, and amplification calculations based on system requirements. Other items may include subjects such as number of plug-ins per insert track, bus assignments for efficient recording operation, and mastering compression settings.
Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing and Outside of Class Assignments -
  1. Written critiques and analyses of audio production projects including albums, soundtracks, television, video games and Internet multi-media.
  2. Written summaries documenting technical and artistic elements for corresponding submitted assignments and audio projects.
  3. Written proposals, session logs, learning outcomes and reflections supporting submitted musical works and final master recordings.