Audio Fundamentals Tutorial

Managing Gain & Distortion

  4.1   (6)  - log in to review
5 Videos | Length: 11min 19sec
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    Managing Gain & Distortion

    Knowing the terms Unity Gain, Digital Zero, Negative Infinity dB, and what they mean in your production will give you the power to record and mix the best sounding tracks possible.

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    Demystifying Zero

    Zero can mean different things on different gear. Knowing the specifics of gain staging will help you manage a sometimes confusing array of terms and settings on all kinds of pro and consumer audio gear.

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    Being the Master of Your Signal Chain

    A complex signal chain presents a dizzying array of opportunities to manage gain. Using key concepts and settings practiced by successful engineers will put you on the fast track for making the best sounding recordings possible.

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    What Is Distortion?

    While certain types of distortion should be avoided, other types provide valuable sonic tools that can make or break a production. Knowing the difference between “good” and “bad” distortion differentiates the novice from the pro engineer.

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    Time to Evaluate

    A recap of some of the important concepts taught in the Managing Gain & Distortion course.

Product Overview


Recording engineers and music producers encounter many ways to adjust gain along the recording and mixing signal path. Knowing the best practices for setting levels in your DAW, processors, and other gain stages will allow you to avoid distortion and noise in your productions.


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Managing Gain & Distortion is rated 4.1 out of 5 by 6 .
Rated 3.5 out of 5 by from Nice information It was infromative. I wish I could speed up the video, that goes for all of the videos on this course.
Date published: 2020-08-17
Rated 3.0 out of 5 by from very basic I wouldn't buy this tutorial separately. I only watched it because I have the all-inclusive package. It's very basic. Basically on your analog preamps, you want the signal to peak at 0dbVU. It also tells you the difference between dbVU and dBFS. Cool little review.
Date published: 2017-07-30
Rated 4.0 out of 5 by from Good basic overview This is short, but concise and critical information on a subject often misunderstood or overlooked by the novice audio producer. It would be great to build and expand on this base! I would rte it as very useful, mandatory info for the novice producer.
Date published: 2017-01-08
Rated 5.0 out of 5 by from Excellent! Basic understanding of gain structure is so important. My opinion is that improper gain structure is the number one reason that amateur/hobbyist don't consistently get great recordings and mixes.
Date published: 2017-01-06
Rated 1.0 out of 5 by from Too short, too little information, too bad... These tutorials from 'the blackbird academy' are way too short, and doesn't provide more than an overview of something. An utter waste of time, in my opinion.
Date published: 2017-01-06
Rated 5.0 out of 5 by from Good and informative Thanks for providing this info on gain staging and distortion
Date published: 2017-01-02
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