What do I do when I'm not posting to Clicked? Today it involved this 70's drum machine from this cool list. Also this one and wishing I knew how to play with this one. If it worked I'll share the results and other links later.
So on Friday I learned a few lessons worth sharing. The back story is that I pitched that auto-tune the news item to the Maddow show and they decided to do a segment about it as a light Friday night item. Like a fool, I suggested there might be some kind of Audacity plugin that would "auto-tune-ize" an audio file automatically. It turns out there really isn't, but I didn't know that at the time and put myself on the hook to produce something. Part of what threw me was this actually wrong but very right-sounding answer on Yahoo answers.
I went to Audacity first and picked up tons of free plugins and also the vst enabler. (VST = Virtual Studio Technology. There are other formats for virtual studio plugins but VST was the path I was on because of that Yahoo answer.)
I looked for the Antares Autotune plugin but it cost money so I tried the free version called Gsnap.
Gsnap didn't work but that wasn't Gsnap's fault, that was just because it didn't work with Audacity. I thought it was Gsnap's fault and downloaded the trial version of the Antares software.
Of course, that didn't work either and eventually I found a list of compatible hosts and realized I'd gone wrong with Audacity.
So now I needed expensive virtual audio mixing software in order to run an auto-tune plugin. Luckily many of them offer free trial versions. Working down the list on the Antares site, I took the 30-Day trial of Adobe's Audition 3.
Funnily, the trial version of Antares Autotune didn't work with the trial version of Adobe Audition but the free Gsnap I downloaded back in the beginning did. Then it was just a matter of learning how to use (and abuse) the effect.
The one thing I never really worked out was how to make it all more melodious. Some auto-tune software allows you to drag notes or draw a line on a screen that represents the key that the piece is supposed to follow. I probably could have chopped it into clips and assigned each clip a key like chord progressions but time was running out and what really ended up being an insurmountable obstacle was that the audio (taken from a clip of the show) had to match the video. So if I did anything to draw out syllables or change the pace of the audio, I'd have to do the same with the video. I'd already spent the day learning audio, there was no time to play with video software, so I just sent the pieces I'd made upstairs to the video editor and he made the final product.
This is the segment that aired.
This is my scratch pad project for which I used the free Movie Maker on my PC to pair the video with the audio.
Lastly, the basic way this amazing drum machine set-up works is that you set the bpm in the bottom toolbar. That triangle play button is what makes the whole thing go. The way to string it all together is kind of like the Yahoo Pipes interface. You drag from an output to an input and the software automatically draws a connector cable. So just make the noise maker boxes connect to the volume knob boxes and you're good to go.