You are currently browsing the monthly archive for March 2011.

Some people have blamed the economic problems of the 1970s and 1980s on competition between foreign goods and American-made goods. How significant is this competition?

Students can start to answer this question by examining the labels in their clothing and on their favorite products at home.

Where Does My Clothing Come From?





Phone/MP3 player

For Homework – Where Do My Family’s “Things” Come From?

Make a list of your families audio and video equipment, cars or kitchen appliances. Try to uncover where each of these things was manufactured.






Video Game

Audio System


Video Camera


Air Conditioner

Other items

Click the image below and answer the questions found on the page.  All answers can be found in Chapter 13 of your Audio in Media textbook.  Click on “Leave a Comment” to submit your work/answers.

Click image below to be taken to the True/False and Vocab form.

Define the following terms:

1) Mixdown
2) Mixer
3) Sweetening
4) Cocktail party effect
5) Layering
6) SFX
7) Donut
8) Compression
9) Backtiming
10) Equalizer
11) Low-frequency enhancement
12) Surround sound
13) Bias
14) Bias current
15) Bandwidth curve

** Most of these words can be found in Ch. 19 or our book, Audio in Media **


Chapter 6


1. Analog recording differs from digital recording in that analog recording is: (p. 102)
a. filtered
b. continuous
c. noncontinuous
d. synchronized

2. Which of the following is not a layer in the makeup of audiotape? (p. 102)
a. plastic base
b. binder
c. magnetic coating
d. magnetic adhesive

3. Analogue recording is still far more widespread than digital recording (p. 101)
a. true
b. false
c. true but digital recording is gaining
d. true in some cases but not for music recordinh

4. Print-through is: (p. 102)
a. the amount of signal stored on a tape after recording
b. how evenly magnetic particles on a tape are aligned after the force field is removed
c. the dB value that indicates when a tape is saturated
d. when an encoded signal from one layer of tape affects the encoded signal of an adjacent layer of tape

5.A recording intended for long-term storage should be: (p. 103)
a. recorded on high-output tape
b. wound and rewound only when required for playback
c. stored “tails out”
d. stored “heads out”

6. In a tape transport system, the capstan: (p. 104)
a. is the rubber wheel that spins only when it pulls the tape across the heads
b. is a precision drive shaft that regulates the tape speed
c. controls the tension (or torque) of the feed and takeup reels
d. is another name for “takeup idler”

7. The faster the tape speed, the poorer the sound quality. (p. 106)
a. true
b. false

8. In professional, three-head analog audiotape recorders, the head arrangement is (from left to right): (p. 107)
a. record, erase, playback
b. record, playback, erase
c. erase, record, playback
d. playback, erase, record

9. Bias current is a: (p. 107)
a. high-frequency current that linearizes the magnetic recording on a tape and, therefore, makes the process of magnetic tape recording possible
b. high-frequency current used to eliminate “flutter” in magnetic recording
c. high-frequency current used to eliminate “wow” in magnetic recording
d. high-frequency current fed through the scrape flutter filter to ensure optimal head-to-tape contact

10. The recorded path a signal makes on tape is called a: (p. 108)
a. track
b. channel
c. headstack
d. guard band

11. Aligning the heads on an analog tape recorder would not include adjusting the: (p. 109)
a. wrap
b. azimuth
c. scrape flutter filter
d. zenith

12. Sel sync (selective synchronization): (p. 110)
a. synchronizes two or more tracks in the transfer of a multitrack recording to stereo
b. synchronizes at the record head sound being recorded and played back at the same time
c. synchronizes two or more tape recorders so that they can run at exactly the same speed
d. synchronizes audiotape recorder speed with film camera speed when shooting double system sound

13. Magnetic film: (p. 112)
a. has an oxide coating down one side and picture covering most of the film
b. has two stripes of oxide on either side of the film stock and picture in the middle
c. is similar to audiotape in that it contains all audio on an optical track and no picture
d. is similar to audiotape in that contains all sound and no picture, and it has similar magnetic characteristics

14. Overdubbing is: (p. 118)
a. using the record head to both playback and record
b. same as sel sync
c. replacing a sound with another sound
d. putting a sound on top of another sound on a track

15. The rate at which the fixed intervals sample the original signal is called the: (p. 113)
a. analog to digital conversion
b. frequency response
c. coding
d. sampling frequency

16. To digitally encode the highest frequency in a signal successfully, it has to be sampled at a rate at least ________ its frequency: (p. 113)
a. twice
b. three times
c. four times
d. none of the above

17. The more quantizing levels there are:(p. 115)
a. the longer the word length or bit depth
b. the shorter the word length or bit depth
c. the higher the SPL will be
d. the less accurate the digital representation


18. In digital recording, very high frequencies (17,000 Hz and higher) need to be attenuated to prevent aliasing. What type of device is used to do this? (p. 117)
a. low-pass filter
b. mic preamp
c. high-pass filter, set low
d. digital compressor

19. _______ has made digital audio networking possible. (p. 131)
a. DVD
b. The Yellow Book Standard

20. The main limitation of Mini discs is: (p. 123)
a. very expensive media
b. non-portability
c. difficult to locate areas of the disc
d. its data compression scheme limits its use for critical recording

Last week we discussed the evolution of technology and audio products.  You were given time to research dates and when products became available.  I would like for you to get artistic and put your data to paper and create a colorful timeline.  I will be taking the best ones from each class and posting on our classroom wall.

Get creative in creating your timeline.  They can be horizontal, vertical or any other way you’d like to make it.  Here is an example, but don’t let the example hinder your creativity.

We’ve come a long way from 8-tracks and albums, cassette tapes and reel to reel recording.  I’d like for you to make an audio timeline similar to the example below.  You can focus on a specific aspect of audio or keep it general, but make sure to go back at least 75 years and go to the present day.  For extra credit, think of what the future has in store for audio.  For example:  MP3’s have been around for nearly 15 years, what will replace the MP3?


1) What record label did Nate Dogg start his career off at?

2) What song introduced both Nate Dogg and Warren G (was included in the Above the Rim soundtrack)?

3) What was the name of the group that consisted of Nate Dogg, Warren G and Snoop Dogg? (also the area code of Long Beach, CA)

4) Who are the members of Tha Dogg Pound?  (DPG)

5) Name a solo album released by Nate Dogg.

6) What age was Nate Dogg when he died?

7) What did he die of?

8) Name 2 songs that Nate Dogg was on.

9) Name a song that features both 2pac and Nate Dogg.  *could also be used for #8

10) Do you want Mr. Cisneros to come back on Friday? 

1.  What is Perceived Obsolescence?

2.  What is Planned Obsolescence?

3.  What fraction of natural resources are gone?

4.  What are the 2 most popular activities for americans during leisure time?

Click the image below and answer the following questions.

1.  What are 2 toxic chemicals found in our electronics?

2.  How many pounds of lead can be found in Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) monitors and TVs?

3.  Name 2 countries that may end up with our “recycled” products.

4.  What does EPR stand for?

5.  How can you be sure your old stuff isn’t getting exported?

6.  How long do most of your electronic devices (i-pod, cell phone, etc.) last?

March 2011

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RSS Mr. Katz

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RSS College of the Desert Radio 1620 AM

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RSS The Makeshift Musician

  • Producing Natural-Sounding MIDI Notes
    When making electronically-produced music, you’ll find yourself often programming notes rather than playing them. People who don’t understand the medium will say that this makes the music cold, mechanical and lifeless, but they simply don’t understand the amount of work and craftsmanship that goes into manually arranging notes. A composer needs to take into […]
  • Weekly Music Writing – Like lifting weights made of creativity
    A while back I wrote about writing music constantly in order to build your skills and flex your creativity. I’ve been making music for several years now and my biggest project had been a 16 track score for a tragically unreleased computer game, which I finished in about 6 months. This was a great exercise, […]
  • Microphones, Cables and Everything Else in Your Studio
    This is the final part of the Makeshift Musician’s Comprehensive Guide to Building Your Own Studio So, you’ve got your room for your studio, you’ve set up your computer, hooked up your audio interface and installed your recording software. What’s next? Actually, a lot of stuff. Microphones Unless you’re an all-software kind of musician, you need […] […]
  • Audio Recording Software for Your Studio
    This is Part 4 of the Makeshift Musician’s Comprehensive Guide to Building Your Own Studio We’re now down to the last big component of your beast of a studio. To add this last piece, we need to dive into the prickly, sometimes confusing realm of software. Luckily for you, though, there are a lot of easy […]
  • Audio Interface, or, How to Get Sound into Your Computer
    This is Part 3 of the Makeshift Musician’s Comprehensive Guide to Building Your Own Studio Now that you’ve got a computer, it’s entirely possible that you’re now standing in front of it with your guitar or piano or whatever, your eyes slowly moving back and forth between the two objects in a confused manner, wondering how […]

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  • Just Blaze on Ghost Production, Musical Styles
    Just Blaze on the evolution of musical styles, the state of New York hip-hop, DJ’ing, and ghot production. “A lot of these guys employ people who do their music for them.” “Some of these DJ’s that are constantly on the road are also constantly putting out new music.  How… because they have guys under them […]
  • Battle Of The Americas Beat Battle f/ Young Guru
    The Beat Academy presents The Battle of The Americas Beat Battle featuring judges Young Guru, Symbolyc One (S1), and Jake One. On Saturday June 21st 24 producers from USA and Canada will go to war in the ultimate team beat battle! Grab tickets or visit Beat Academy for more info. Video of The Road to […]
  • DJ Premier Explains Iconic Gangstarr Logo
    DJ Premier explains how Guru and Big Shug designed the Gangstarr logo and how it’s been used throughout all of their albums.  Primo also talks about how Mass Appeal was created with the intention of being a radio hit.

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