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  1. There are several detailed posts on the old forum about the differences between libraries (search engines will find them, but they are so slow to open the links). Albion One has disadvantages in the soloing aspect, but remains one of the best sonic building blocks out there. Albion One is more of a "ready for instant use" library for textures and rapid composition without needing to get overly involved with template setups. Also, it is one of the methods to upgrade to full Kontakt, so saves money from that aspect as well.
  2. There is also a free version of Duplicate Cleaner, which I used for years, but I wanted to post this in case anyone wants the Pro version. First, the Pro 5 upgrade is free to anyone who bought Pro 4 after JAN 2020 (I cannot remember the exact date). Second, they are still offering purchases for Pro 4, which "should" qualify for the free Pro 5 upgrade (no way to check this for sure). Pro 5 is $39, and Pro 4 (link at the bottom of the buy Pro 5 page) is $29.95 (again, this "should" be a free upgrade to Pro 5), so not sure why they still have that posted. https://www.digitalvolcano.co.uk/duplicatecleaner.html The "Buy Now" opens the purchase for Pro 5, at the bottom of that page is the link to purchase Pro 4. If you have purchased Pro 4 after JAN 2020, when downloading 5, there is a link to the registration key page that gives you the free upgrade to Pro 5 (sends the new key to the same email you registered Pro 4 with). Again, each of these has a free version, so the Pro version is not required. They seem to choke the processing speed in the free versions, and even with Pro 4 the "remove empty directories" was flubbed, but in Pro 5 that has all been fixed. For folks who regularly make (multiple) backups like I do, this program has saved a lot of disk space over the years. I have been carrying files forward from machine to machine since 2001.
  3. Another option to reduce weight is to use a laptop for the sounds and simple MIDI controller. I have seen this done more and more in the recent past with great results, but it also throws a lot of focus onto the laptop itself.
  4. Quick update for anyone that may catch this down the road. The ONE RS "Twin" version is pretty much all that is needed (one 360 degree 5.7K lens and one 4K lens)... the other lens (1" wide angle) is a remnant from the old model with lower resolution so the other two cover the bases there. Selfie stick/tripod are optional, but recommended, since they mount perfectly to the camera bracket. Other accessories are more for specific uses (underwater filming, mounts to specific things, etc.). The company makes software that will do some editing and exports, but is very limited. Ironically, VLC player will play an exported 360 video so you can pan/zoom all you want on it. A guy named Hugh Hou has a truckload of videos on using footage from the ONE X2 model (attached to a drone), and editing in DaVinci Resolve. One of the key limitations of the Resolve free version is that it cannot import/export above 4K, the Studio (paid version) can do 32K. He did get a nice dig in on Adobe in one video... basically, Adobe + Mocha is $1000/yr... Resolve Studio is $295 for life (2 computers, free upgrades). I need to delve into Resolve more, but another guy had a nice post on the history of the program (explains why the manual is 3600+ pages), as well as a comparison between the free and Studio versions. That write up is interesting: https://artgrid.io/insights/davinci-resolve-free-vs-studio/
  5. In searching for a convenient camera, I had the GO (2) model in mind for a while, but did some research recently and the ONE R comes up as #3. Since I recognized the brand I checked that out and was sort of shocked... specifically with the 360 lens. Apparently that is capturing a panoramic view every frame, so when you edit, you simply move the focal point around to make linear footage. That particular footage also solved the "where is the selfie stick" I have seen in other videos (you can see the shadow on the ground in the video below, but the camera removes the stick itself). It is modular, and has 3 lenses available, but that 360 lens is my real focus. Has anyone worked with that 360 lens? I haven't jumped into documentation, but seems most information references iPhone being the default interface (no iPhone here). I also do not subscribe to Adobe Premiere (and never will), so need to learn more of the 360 editing needs (I "think" they have proprietary software available for free as well, but still researching). Can see the stick shadow in the skiing clip in this video (41s mark).
  6. Technology has certainly benefited everyone. Back when I switched to guitar, my mom (who was a big proponent of piano) even said, "Yeah, its hard to carry a piano around with you." Keyboards have gotten lighter over the years too, but their size alone makes them too cumbersome for my taste... either proof that I am old, lazy, or a combination of both. For me the guitar maintenance has just become habit, and is only cumbersome on a new setup. I put bass frets in guitars, and my baby was Plek'd a decade ago... just string changes since, and a 1/4 turn on the truss rod if going between 9s and 10s. Latest addition to laziness came this past Christmas. Checking out the Kemper Profiler vs. HELIX Floor there was one very nice review by a guy who had both. The clincher in what he said was that they are both exceptional, but with the Kemper you will need FX pedals and the HELIX won't. My amp-lugging days are done (and I would never move my valve amp anyway), but I will admit that HELIX Floor is bigger/heavier than I anticipated. Stupid aside to that one... there was a crazy sale then (same price as when released with Cubase 11 Elements and Native free), BUT no one carried them... add to cart to get the "back ordered" message, but didn't get that from zZounds so I called them to make sure and was shocked to hear, "Oh yeah, we have them... 220 in stock." Sweetwater rep was rather odd about that one and said something like, "If you are really serious I can look into reserving one for you." I waited the 2 days to reply and said, "Yes, I am serious, but I already have one on the kitchen table."
  7. If you already own any version of SpectraLayers, check the Steinberg site. When you select "Buy Now" there are tabs at the top of the next page. The "Updates and Upgrades" are the second tab. SpectraLayers Pro 7 -> Pro 8 is considered an "update" and was listed at $79.99, but in the cart came up at $51.99. There is some sale there as well going on that isn't obvious. The updates/upgrades vary by what version you already own.
  8. That is sort of an odd introduction, and they spend more time talking about McCarty. What is ironic is that when PRS started out and was pouring over patents, two names always showed up... Leo Fender and Ted McCarty. After some coaxing, PRS reached out to Ted (he was blind by that time), and Ted became his mentor of sorts. Constrained by the patents from Gibson and Fender, McCarty chose hybrid specs in many instances to not only get the ideal specs, but also pick the best features of each company. The PRS McCarty 594 is dedicated to Ted and embodies a culmination of his life's experience in learning the art. Not many realize McCarty's influence in PRS, which ended up being pretty extensive.
  9. LOL, I had the same reaction initially! Even got paranoid and made sure they are the same size. For guitarists, the fret hand also has stronger muscles to spread the fingers, while the other just holds the pick. Not much use on the piano for right-handed players though, since the right hand does more work most often on the keys. Maybe guitarists who play left-handed can put it to use.
  10. I have a skiier's (also called gamekeeper's) thumb injury on my right hand which prevents the bottom knuckle from going straight, but I have always used that hand to gauge 9". Because of this thread I had to check... sure enough, right hand is exactly 9"... I never checked the left hand before and that is 9.5"... fretting hand matters most. Actually that makes more sense because that hand gets spread naturally often (especially the pinky)... the tendons between my pinky and ring finger on my right hand are much tighter than on the left (left spreads 180 degrees from thumb to pinky, right is about 160 degrees). Hand stretching exercises do help, but straight line from thumb to pinky is as far as anyone can get. That video is nicely done!
  11. A quick start to see if it is a CPU-hungry plugin is to hit E (global FX bypass) in CbB and see if things suddenly run smoothly. If they do, you can start disabling plugins, with ones intended for mastering (one instance) being used on tracks (several instances) being a common culprit. Some instruments are CPU-hungry as well, which can be mitigated by bouncing (rendering) to a new track and archiving the original track. Playing back "audio only" is significantly easier on the computer than with truckloads of FX in play. Unfortunately, there is no defined list of what to look for, but watching CPU load as you get into mixing will give you a good indication in your workflow.
  12. I guess that would depend on what you are using it for. The benchmarks for the 9900K versus the 8700K pretty much mirror the 33% increase in cores/threads. I have only ever gotten my 8700K to peg during benchmarks (not really applicable), 3D video rendering (also relies on the video card typically), and offhand encryption tools (which are such short duration you wouldn't care). I have had my 8700K overclocked 29% since day one, and the CPU going over 50% is pretty rare. Depending on how many apps you have installed, you may see computer performance drop simply because many have background processes running that are unnecessary. A lot of startup type listed as "Automatic" in the Windows Services app can be setup to "Manual" or "Manual (Trigger Start)" if they only need to run to support an application, and not Windows itself.
  13. Side comment, since I had a coworker that went hiking for the first time in the dead of winter. Wool is used similarly for staying warm for extended periods and staying comfortable (cold weather, sailing, etc.). Base layer is cotton (remove moisture from skin), middle layer is wool (moisture management and insulation), and the top layer is tight-weave and water repellent (Gore-tex products for windbreakers are most common these days, since the Teflon repels most everything trying to get in).
  14. I had this first reaction as well, but wool is hydroscopic, so went to their site. https://support.woolinsulation.com/knowledge/is-havelock-wool-fire-resistant#:~:text=Is Havelock Wool fire resistant%3F The answer is,is fire resistant. Read below for more information. One video is no longer linked from that article, but the last video is interesting (the 3-5 minute portion is impressive). Took 2 minutes to intentionally start it, then they put it out at 7 minutes because it got boring and inspected the damage. [The second half of that video is the same test on synthetic fibers and quite astonishing.]
  15. Finally... Wilkinson Roller Bridge ($33) and DiMarzio Super Distortion ($74). The high E broke (originally 9s) with all of the cycles playing with bridge/nut, so put 10s on it. After assembly, the fret buzz was worse than I expected, so I had to do the fretwork (16" radius block and crowning file... two more tools needed, but I already had both). I took that opportunity to redo the nut* and set the neck perfectly straight. Plays perfectly; the Super Distortion is a bit more bassy than I prefer but is a nice pickup. I may change that out in the future. The neck has absolutely no relief on it (why I used 10s) and has incredible action now. *For the nut... A set of feeler gauges that can be taken apart is the best way to do this: With the neck strung, measure the gap on the first fret for both the low E and high E (mine were .029" and .032") Loosen the strings and tap the nut free. On a flat surface (counter works great), lay 400 grit sandpaper sanding side up... gently sand off the superglue dabs on the nut (face and bottom). Sit the nut on the counter, and separate the gauges... you want the low E at .020", and the high E at .012"... so you need the delta from the first measurement. My low E needed to be .009" shorter (to be .020" after)... so laid the .009" guage on the counter, and used a pencil to mark that end. My high E needed to be .020" shorter (to be .012" after)... so laid the .020" guage on the counter, and used a pencil to mark that end. Using the sandpaper again, I genlty worked the bottom of the nut until the ends were at the pencil marks (will be tilted so the high E is lower). Gently scraped superglue from the neck, and superglued the nut back in, waited 15 minutes and restrung it.
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