Ear Training Results: Acoustic Guitar

Here’s my follow-up video to yesterday’s round of ear training. If you haven’t checked out the audio clips there, you might want to do that before watching the video below.


Were you right? Wanna gloat?

Were you wrong? Wanna vent?

Leave a comment!

Ear Training: Acoustic Guitar [Texas Hold ‘Em Edition]

This whole “ear training” thing is pretty fun. Let’s do it again!!

This week we’ll take a look at acoustic guitar.

The Clips

I’ve got three clips for you. The first is the original acoustic guitar, no processing. The second clip has some processing. The third clip has more processing.

So the signal flow goes:

Clip #1 –plug-in–> Clip #2 –plug-in–> Clip #3

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to guess as to what processing I did to the audio. Be as specific as you can. This really helps you hone in your listening skills.

Don’t just guess “EQ.” Guess “a boost at 20 kHz, and a cut at 2 Hz” instead. 🙂


Ear Training Results: Bass EQ

Yesterday I posted two bass audio clips, one dry and one processed. Then I had you guess what I did to the second clip.

Ear training is really important. I always learn something from it. Oftentimes you end up realizing that things are much simpler than they seem.

Check out the video for more:


Ear Training: Bass

You may recall that a little over a week ago we did a little ear training with drums. If you missed it, finish reading this post, then head over there and check that out, too.

Today, let’s have a listen to a bass part. In my opinion, the bass can be the most unruly part of your mix. It can sound amazing, but it sometimes takes a lot of wrangling to get it right.

I’ve written about mixing bass before, but let’s take a listen to an actual bass part.

Ready Your Ears

I’ve got two clips for you. The first is the dry clip of a bass, as it was recorded. On the second clip I did some processing. Here they are:

  • [audio:http://hsc-audio.s3.amazonaws.com/Bass1%20-%20dry.mp3]
  • [audio:http://hsc-audio.s3.amazonaws.com/Bass2%20-%20Processed.mp3]

After listening a couple of times, leave a guess in the comments section as to what exactly you think I did to the signal. Be as specific as you can. Let’s see who gets the closest.

I’ll reveal the answer in a video tomorrow.

Ready? Go!

[Photo by tanakawho]

Ear Training Results: Parallel Compression

Yesterday, I posted a little ear training exercise. Most folks guessed the compression was the main difference between the two clips, but JP nailed it by guessing parallel compression.

You may remember a few articles and videos I posted last summer on parallel processing — Parallel Processing: Bass, Parallel Processing: Drums.

To review, parallel processing is simply processing two copies of the same signal in different ways in order to produce tonal results that would be otherwise impossible with only one copy of the signal.


Ear Training: Drums

Have you ever done ear training? If you studied music theory in college, you probably did.

I remember my Theory II class with Dr. Linton. He would sit at the piano and play an interval, and we would have to accurately guess. He started slow, but that didn’t last long.

Bum…BUM. “Major fourth!!” BUM…bum. “Minor third!!”

He would also play chord progressions, and we had to guess the chord AND the inversion. Pling…pling. “Four. First inversion!” Pling… “Five. Second inversion!”

A lot of folks hated it. I loved it. (Don’t even get me started on fixed-do solfege exams. Whew.)

Ear Training for Engineers

So if music majors in college are so focused on ear training, shouldn’t we as audio engineers focus on ear training just as much…if not more?

Probably so.