2015 was a transformative year here at Ask.Audio. We changed from AskAudioMag.com to Ask.Audio. We've now, thanks to our sister site macProVideo, set up the largest audio & music production video learning library online at The Ask.Audio Academy... and we're continuing to grow thanks to your support and the efforts of our 20+ authors!
With so many interesting stories and product releases revealing themselves in 2015 we've decided to take a look at the 8 most popular articles in each category: New, Reviews, Tutorials & Interviews. Each of these is on their own page, so you can quickly and easily navigate between the categories that matter to you most.
Thanks again for your support during 2015. Hope you enjoy 2016 at Ask.Audio even more!
Here's the top 8 news stories published in 2015 (excluding our $33,000 Music Gear Contest & Black Friday Deals news posts).
1. Top 11 Most Popular DAWs (You Voted For)
Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs) are the hub for 99% of all modern musicians and producers. It's where our ideas, feelings and collaborations start to take form. So which is the most popular DAW?
2. Apple Fix El Capitan Audio Issues in OS X 10.11.1 (Beta)
If you were waiting to upgrade to OS X El Capitan due to problems with audio unit plugins and music hardware, Apple have an update round the corner that is going to fix it for us. Good news at last!
3. Watch How Audio Plugins Are Made (Behind the Scenes Video at Waves Audio)
In this fascinating documentary film (debuted on World Plugin Day on October 8th) we get a sneak peek behind the scenes at Wave Audio and the vibe might be different to what you’d expect.
4. Five Ways iPad Pro Could Improve Music Recording & Production
With the new Apple iPad Pro being announced less than 24 hours ago, we take a cursory look at how this bigger and more powerful iPad could change the way we make music forever.
5. An Arduino MIDI Guitar Synth That Plays Great
Curious how you can hack existing instruments and an Arduino to create your own MIDI Synth Guitar? Gr4yhound has done just that and rocks it out in this impressive video demo.
6. Best of 2015: Audio Interfaces
Audio interfaces are one of the most important element in any recording or production studio. Here's five of the best for every budget that made waves in 2015 which we reviewed.
7. 2015 Xmas Gift Guide for Musicians & Producers
The Christmas & Winter Holidays are fast upon us. Whether you’re thinking of a gift for a music making friend/relative or for yourself, here's 15 music gifts bound to improve the festive cheer.
8. Roland Boutique Synthesizers Announced (Officially)
The cat was out of the bag with these synths due to the recent leak, but in early October 2015, Roland officially announced that some of their historic synths were now reborn in limited-edition compact sound modules.
Here's the top 8 reviews published in 2015. #s 8 & 9 were close enough that we considered them to be tied... so both are included.
1. 10 MIDI Controllers Every Electronic Producer Should Consider
MIDI Controllers. Every self-respecting music producer and musician uses MIDI—sometimes unknowingly. But with so many music controllers out there which one is best for your needs? Let's find out.
2. 11 Hardware MIDI Sequencers Every Producer Should Consider
MIDI Sequencers. The more 'veteran' music producer or musician among us probably has at least one. But with hardware sequencers becoming more popular and accessible, which one is best for your needs?
3. Ableton Push 2
Push 2 is the new incarnation of Ableton's Live controller and instrument. There's improvements all round and Noah Pred dives in to discover what's changed and how it'll improve your Live workflow.
4. 27 Music Gear Essentials Under $100
If you want to gear up your music studio setup, or your skills, but are on a budget this list is here to help. From audio interfaces to DAWs, MIDI controllers to synths to mics: all under $100!
5. Output Exhale – Bend & Twist Vocals Like Never Before
Output's REV and Signal, were both huge hits for modern music producers. In this world-first review, we got hands on with Exhale—that's a unique take on vocal production and manipulation.
6. Moog Mother 32
Who doesn't want a Moog synthesizer? Exactly! We all want one... Rishabh Rajan got his hands on the new Moog Mother 32 which captures the imagination even more than we expected and is eurorack ready.
7. Arturia BeatStep Pro
The original BeatStep from Arturia has been a big hit for those wanting to sequence synths and software. So, how does the BeatStep Pro compare with its multiple CV outs and standalone capability?
8. Novation Circuit In-Depth Video Review
The new Novation Circuit has caused a stir since its 1st October release. We decided to spend more days with it, going deeper than most, so you can discover what this groove box is really capable of.
9. T-47 Microphone Kit
Microphone Parts say they've analysed the best vintage microphones and found a way to provide circuits and capsules that deliver the same tone at a fraction of the price. We check out the T-47 here.
Our list articles sometimes span a few pages to help split our high-quality tips and tutorials into more manageable chunks for everyone. So many excellent tips to learn in these tutorials... our authors provide priceless experience and knowledge. And the articles are free! Enjoy.
1. Seven Mistakes To Avoid When Setting Up Studio Monitors
Correctly setting up studio monitors is crucial to ensure your audio productions aren't awash with problems. In this enlightening read, Joe Albano discusses 7 things which can be avoided.
2. Six Mistakes to Avoid When Recording Vocals
Recording vocals is arguably easier than recording a drum kit, but there are still common mistakes to avoid when laying down vocal tracks or recording vocal talent. Here's six things to bear in mind.
3. Eight Mistakes to Avoid When Producing Music
So you're ready to record, mix and master that song/album/soundtrack? Joe Albano is here to ensure you don't succumb to any common pitfalls during the process. These tips should help...
4. 11 Synth Mixing & Programming Mistakes Every Producer Should Avoid
Don't commit cardinal sin after cardinal sin when it comes to mixing / programming your hardware or software synthesizer. The following 11 tips are what every self-respecting producer should know.
5. Five Mistakes To Avoid When Mixing With Reverb
Applying reverb to the mix can help it sound incredible, or if badly done, muddy and mushy. Here's five important mistakes to avoid when mixing with reverb you really need to avoid.
6. What Every Modern Producer Can Learn From Mozart
Often, when society encounters the work of an amazing artist or producer, the word talent gets whipped out quicker than the Amen break at a drum ‘n bass festival. But what is talent really?
7. Analog vs Digital: The Psychology & Science Behind the Most Contentious Debate in Audio, Part 1
It's a question that will probably never go away: Is analog or digital better for musicians and producers? Shane Berry looks at the science and psychology behind this contentious debate.
8. Music Theory: Jordan Rudess Demonstrates Rhythmic Displacement Techniques
In this excellent video tutorial on displacement, from the full music theory rhythm explored course, Jordan Rudess shows how it works and how to use both accents and chords to good effect.
Talking to the Pros about their workflows, setup and/or creative muse is inspiring. We hope you feel as inspired reading these interviews from some of the most influential producers and artists in the business.
1. Sasha Talks Changing Face of Music Production & DJing
DJ and producer, Sasha, (Alexander Paul Coe) has remixed tracks for Madonna, Hot Chip & Chemical Brothers, and produced countless others. He talks music technology, producing and the creative process.
2. Exclusive: Pan-Pot Premiere "Operator" & Reveal Tech Behind It
Listen to Berlin based techno duo Pan-Pot’s premiere of “Operator” from their upcoming EP and album exclusive to Ask.Audio. Plus they explain the story and tech behind the track.
3. Exclusive: Kate Simko “Polyphonica” & Fusing Chicago House With Modern Vibes
Listen to an exclusive track from the album, PolyRhythmic, by Kate Simko and Tevo. There's old-school vintage drum machines, analog synths & plenty of Chicago inside & Kate explains the tech process.
4. Jean-Michel Jarre on Evolution of Music Technology
In this video from Native Instruments, Jean-Michel Jarre talks about the evolution of electronic music technology and how it shaped his recent album. If you only watch one video today, watch this.
5. Icicle on Ableton & Maschine Production and Performance Workflow
During his visit to BPM 2015, Ask.Audio’s Liam O’Mullane aka The Sound Tutor caught up with highly acclaimed d&b producer Icicle to find out more about the tech behind his current live show rig.
6. Ryan Farish Talks Chillout Music Production Tips & Guiding Forces Behind Spectrum
Co-Writer & Co-Publisher of a Grammy Award Nominated Recording, DJ & producer, Ryan Farish chats with us about his epic new chillout album, Spectrum, his production tech, and his creative process.
7. NoiseControllers on Sound Design and HardStyle
Noisecontrollers has been turning heads and ears for 10 years. And his new album All Night Long has received critical acclaim for its use of complex sound design. We chat with him about this and more.
8. David Morales on How Tech Is Changing The Art of DJing
Prolific remixer of some of the biggest names in music, David Morales, talks about the tech he uses when producing, remixing and playing live.
Want to become a better musician, producer or DJ? Of course you do! That's why we created The Ask.Audio Academy : the largest online education resource purely for audio and music production.