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                                    "Making Quality Recordings From An OAS Instrument"                    March 2014

My old analogue Wersi organ had a dedicated recording output specifically designed to connect to a wide range of analogue recording equipment. Recording was a breeze and good quality was assured.  Whilst we have no such facility on the OAS range of instruments, we do have a number of different ways of making recordings both internally and externally.

Whilst preparing the audio demos for the Wersi Organ Showcase, I tried a number of different recording methods with two objectives in mind. Firstly, since the site is promoting the virtues of the organ and is likely to be visited by potential owners, I wanted the quality of the recordings to be as good as possible. Secondly, I wanted an authentic sound as close possible to what we hear when playing the instrument at home. Achieving both these objectives proved more difficult than I had expected.

Whilst there is a wealth of information out there on the various aspects of the recording process, there is very little on how to record from an electronic organ and nothing that I could find on how to do this from a Wersi. So by a process of trial and error I discovered what worked and what didn't and this series of articles, prompted by an idea from Ken, is the result.

I should like to thank both Colin and Ken for their valuable comments and contributions during the development of the series. If you are considering going into the recording business we hope that this information will be helpful in getting you started and will save you much time and effort in your quest to become an internationally acclaimed Wersi recording artist !!

Enjoy

Jeff

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Below are the links to the PDF articles that can be saved to your computer for easy access.

Also, as a quick reference for viewing the articles on the web the Overview is open below which can allow you to browse the content of the various articles and and activate the PDF files from the article heading.  This has the advantage of being able to return to the Overview after closing the open PDF file and quickly select another point of interest.

 

Links For The PDF Articles

The Series Overview    

Sound Recording Part 1      Sound Recording Part 2     Sound Recording Part 3     Sound Recording Part 4

 Sound Recording Part 5

 

Making Quality Recordings From An OAS Instrument

The Series Overview

 

 

Series Introduction

 

 

        

Have you ever wondered why your Wersi instrument sounds much better on many commercially produced CDs and DVDs than it does on your home recordings?  Well, professional artists have something that we don’t have, custom designed recording studios and a wide range of audio enhancing hardware and software. Whilst we cannot aspire to these sort of facilities in the home environment, there are nevertheless many things that we can do to achieve near studio quality recordings.

 

 

 

This series of articles will take you through the dos and don’ts of making home recordings from your Wersi instrument, explaining the various technologies and equipment available and comparing and contrasting a variety of different recording methods.

 

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Series Content

 

 

 Part 1 – Digital Recording Technology

 

waveform_raw.PNG In this first part of the series we look at the technology used inside digital recording devices and describe how it all fits together to make and play back digital recordings. We make comparisons with the analogue recording process and highlight the essential differences between the two.

 

 

We also explain the concept of digital sampling, take a look at how digital numbers are constructed, and introduce the two most important components in the sampling process namely Bit Depth and Sampling Frequency.

 

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Part 2 – The Digital Recording Process

 

In the second part of the series we explain how the digital sampling process works, we consider the importance of correct recording levels in achieving the best quality recordings, and we describe the various recording formats available for storing digital data. We conclude with a set of guidelines for achieving optimum digital recordings. 

 

 

 

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Part 3 – Using the Internal Digital Recorder

 

 

In the third part of the series we apply the guidelines developed in Part 2 to the use and operation of the internal OAS Digital Recorder. We consider the implications for sound quality of employing a PC based recording system and suggest ways in which recordings

 produced on this system can be further enhanced using

audio processing software. 

 

 

 

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Part 4 – Recording on External Devices

 

In the fourth part of the series we consider making recordings on three types of external devices, PC/Laptops, Stereo Digital Recorders and Multi-Channel Digital Recorders. We look at the cabling requirements for connecting these to the Wersi, explain how to make the recordings and identify any quality issues associated with using each recording device.  

 

 

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Part 5 – Using the Audacity Software

 

In this final part of the series we describe how the Audacity software can be used to perform the audio processing functions referred to throughout the series. Specifically these are Normalisation, MP3 Encoding, and making Stereo Recordings on a PC or Laptop. No previous knowledge of the software is assumed and all relevant operating instructions are provided.  

 

 

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Series Structure

 

At first glance digital recording looks very similar to analogue recording. They share the same recording and playback controls, level indicators etc., but whereas analogue technology is fairly tolerant of misuse, digital technology is not. Get it right and it will sound very good, get it wrong and it can sound very bad. As with all technologies, if we understand something of how it works we can use it more effectively. So the first two parts of the series explain the theory behind the technology which we then apply in the next two parts to the practicalities of recording on internal and external devices. Each part is relatively self-contained but it is recommended that you follow them in part order to acquire a fuller more comprehensive understanding.    

 

Now read on to Part 1 to begin your journey to become a world famous Wersi recording artist !!

 

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Jeff Ormerod

 

March 2014

 

 

 

Site Design and Construction: Ken Belton   

 

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