Logic Pro 9: Audio and Music Production

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From initial track laying through to mixing, sound design, and mastering Mark Cousins and Russ Hepworth- Sawyer bring you Logic Pro 9. By Highlighting the relevant parts of each application they take you through every step of the music creation and production process giving you all the tips, tutorials and tricks that pros use to create perfect recordings.

The book has full color screen shots illustrating the tools, functions and the new look of Logic Pro 9, and the companion website has audio samples and loops.

Logic Pro 9 covers more than just the software it will help you make the most out of every recording session, and will Illuminate and inspire you creative and sonic endeavors!

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"One thing that set's this book aside from the many others on offer is the layout. Cousins and Hepworth-Sawyer have taken a process-driven approach with each section loosely following the structure and order of the writing, production and mastering of a track.. Its in the closing chapters that things get especially interesting, with useful details on how to set up Logic's Environment. As a bonus there's an accompanying website with useful links and nearly 190MB of free loops. Well laid-out and packing plenty of tips and tricks for beginner and intermediate Logic users. 8 of 10 stars."—MusicTech Magazine

"Logic Pro 9 Audio and Music Production is a complete tutorial that will update existing users of the man new features, additional content (samples) and instruments now integrated into this program.. Essentially a guided tour with many full-color screen shots that (if you want) hold your hand through learning Logic or teach you new tricks if you're an old hand."—Music Connection

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780240521930
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 2/17/2010
  • Pages: 432
  • Sales rank: 811,205
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Mark Cousins works as a composer, programmer and engineer, as well as being senior writer for Music Tech Magazine. His professional work includes composing music for some of the world's largest production music companies - including Universal Publishing Production Music - with broadcaster credits including BBC1, BBC2, ITV, Channel 4, Five, BBC World and Sky One, among others. He has also had works performed by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the East of England Orchestra, City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra and the Brighton Festival Chorus, as well as having mixed several orchestral albums for BMG Zomba.

Russ Hepworth-Sawyer is a sound engineer and producer with extensive experience in all things audio. He is a member of the Association of Professional Recording Services and the Audio Engineering Society; a Fellow of the Institute For Learning (U.K.); and a board member of the Music Producer's Guild. Through MOTTOsound (www.mottosound.co.uk), Russ works freelance in the industry as a mastering engineer, a producer, writer, and consultant. Russ currently lectures part-time for York St John University and Barnsley College Online and has taught extensively in higher education at British institutions including Leeds College of Music, London College of Music, and Rose Bruford College. He currently writes for Pro Sound News Europe, has contributed to Sound On Sound magazine, and has written many titles for Focal Press.

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Read an Excerpt

Logic Pro 9 Audio and Music Production

By Mark Cousins Russ Hepworth-Sawyer

Focal Press

Copyright © 2010 Mark Cousins and Russ Hepworth-Sawyer
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-0-240-52194-7

Chapter One

The Logic Concept

1.1 Introduction

It's hard to imagine a more complete system for music and audio production than Logic Pro 9: multitrack recording and editing, a full suite of virtual instruments and effects, and a seamless workflow that takes you from the beginning of your project right through to the delivery of the final production master. Yet, with such a complete system comes the daunting task of understanding how the elements of Logic Pro 9 knit together to produce a professional-sounding result. For example, where do you begin to start writing music or making a recording in Logic? What are the virtual instruments and plug-ins used by the professionals to create release-quality output? And how can you transform those poorly performed band recordings into a polished CD?

So, let's be clear from the start: this book isn't just another instruction manual for Logic Pro 9. Instead, we've taken a process-driven approach that appraises, understands, and explores the features of Logic Pro 9 in a way that matches the structure and order of the production process. We'll do more than just technically describe the functions of Logic Pro 9; we'll look at how the various elements of Logic Pro 9 relate to the demands of audio and music production. With all but a few exceptions, most of the chapters focus on a specific part of the production process — whether it's initial track laying, sound design, or mastering your finished mixes to produce the final CD — highlighting the relevant parts of the application that guarantee a professional-sounding audio product. We'll also look at techniques that go beyond the scope of the manual — practices like parallel compression, for example, that many engineers use and abuse on a daily basis.

If you're starting off from scratch, it's easy to be overwhelmed by the sheer size and complexity of an application like Logic Pro 9. However, it isn't essential to understand the entirety of the application to start producing music. Get to know the components that are most relevant to your way of working and build from there — use plenty of presets, Apple Loops, and so on to get you kick started — and then enjoy the process of exploring each element that little bit further. Ultimately, Logic Pro 9 is a tool that will grow with your experience — a system that will surprise at every turn and open up new possibilities whenever you want to explore the software further. With this book, you'll at least have a reference to aid you in that process, but don't be afraid to experiment to find out how Logic Pro 9 best fits into your unique creative process!

1.2 A Brief History of Logic Pro 9

Like the other "old-timers" of computer-based audio production — including Cubase and Pro Tools — Logic Pro 9 is an application with a rich and long heritage in the industry. Born from the ashes of C-Lab's Notator and Creator in 1993, Notator Logic (as it was then called) was an attempt to create a visual, region-based production environment for MIDI sequencing. Building blocks, or regions of MIDI data — used to control hardware synthesizers and samplers — could be arranged on the computer screen, with a clear, visual representation of the structure of the arrangement. What was unique about Logic, though, was that the application was completely configurable — users could create virtual presentations of their studio, known as an environment, for example, or combine different editor windows in a completely configurable user interface.

Audio functionality was added to the application in 1994, with the release of version 1.7, allowing Logic users to combine both digital audio and MIDI data all in the same arrangement (although initially, only with expensive Digidesign audio hardware). Virtual instruments followed in 2000, making the system a complete production environment where a track could be composed, mixed, and mastered all in one computer, and arguably, without the need for any extra third-party software. Although revolutionary at the time, this method of production has now become the norm, with many musicians and engineers largely working entirely "in the box."

Apple acquired the company that originally developed Logic — Emagic — in 2002, with its programming team joining Apple's, and Logic Pro becoming part of Apple's prized suite of media-based applications, including Final Cut Studio and Aperture 2. The partnership led to many of Logic Pro's technologies migrating into other Apple applications — most notably with the introduction of GarageBand — as well as Apple making Logic Pro an increasingly more price-competitive option, with both the absorption of previously optional software components into the main application (like Space Designer, the EXS24 Sampler, and the ES2 synthesizer), and, with the release of Logic Studio, a halving of its retail price.

With the introduction of Logic Pro 8 and Logic's current incarnation—Logic Pro 9 — Apple has made some big moves to make the application significantly easier to use and much more in line with the usability of its other media products. As a result, it's never been a better time for new users to join the Logic Pro 9 fold — both with respect to its affordability and the significantly easier learning curve!

1.3 the Logical Advantage

Opinion and debate will always rage as to the "best" digital audio workstation, but there are a number of factors that give Logic Pro 9 the edge over alternative solutions. Certainly, if you're trying to make a decision between different audio applications — all with such a compelling range of features — it's well worth understanding some of their main overriding benefits, as well as seeing whether these align with your intended method of working.

Complete Integration with Apple Hardware and Software

Being part of Apple, you can guarantee that Logic Pro 9 will make optimal use of both Apple's computing hardware and the operating system that ties it all together. For example, where other developers might lag behind certain OS updates, Logic Pro tends to be first off the block supporting major upgrades such as Snow Leopard. On top of this, Logic Pro has always stood out from the crowd in terms of its efficient use of DSP resources, suggesting a well-coded audio engine, as well as plenty of integrated components — for example, the EXS24 sampler or Space Designer reverb — that ensure a completely optimal use of your computer's processor.

Exhaustive Range of Plug-Ins and Instruments

Logic Pro 9's integral range of instruments and effects is easily the most comprehensive set available in any off-the-shelf DAW (Digital Audio Workstation). In addition to standard studio stalwarts such as compression, reverb, and equalization, Logic Pro 9 includes a number of contemporary effects and plenty of software instruments covering everything from vintage Hammond organs to cutting-edge component- modeling synthesizers. Ultimately, with such a diverse collection of tools, you can easily produce a professional, release-quality output without having to resort to additional third-party plug-ins and effects, although of course, there's no reason why you can't add these at a later point should you wish to do so. As the old saying goes, the only limit with Logic Pro 9 is your imagination....

Effective Combination of MIDI and Audio Editing

While some applications have strengths in a particular area (like MIDI or audio), Logic Pro 9 presents an effective hybrid solution for both MIDI-based composition and audio recording and editing, which probably explains why so many working composers operate completely within the realms of Logic Pro 9. Its flexibility also makes it possible to use Logic Pro 9 in a wide range of audio production environments including 5.1 and surround sound mixing, sound for film, and other multimedia applications.

Flexible Audio Hardware

Rather than being tied into one type of audio hardware, Logic Pro 9 users have the opportunity and flexibility to select the audio hardware for the way they want to work. For example, a simple laptop solution could just make use of the internal audio hardware, or simple two-in two-out USB interface, while professional users could use dedicated Apogee audio interfaces, or even use Logic Pro 9 as the front end to a full Pro Tools|HD rig.

Chapter Two

Logic's interface

2.1 introduction

Negotiating the interface of any audio application is vital to understanding how it works and the precise method involved in creating a finished audio recording. Logic's interface is no exception, providing its own unique slant on the production process: with a number of editor windows, mixers, media browsers, and so on, all used to sculpt and refine your audio output. Navigate Logic's interface in an informed way, therefore, and the application will become a seamless and enjoyable part of your audio production workflow, rather than a stumbling block to your creative exploits.

In this chapter, we're going to take a look at both the overarching principles of using Logic, alongside the specific components of the Logic interface and how these integrate into the production process. From this important stepping-stone, we can then begin the process of creating our own projects and taking a more detailed look at Logic's role and input in audio and music production.

2.2 What Logic Can record

Logic principally works with two types of data — audio and MIDI. Physical instruments and external sound sources are recorded directly into Logic as audio sound files. You might, for example, plug your guitar straight into a DI input on your audio interface or set up a number of microphones connected to your interface's mic preamps — all of which will be recorded as audio files directly into Logic's Arrange window. Once recorded, you can edit and mix these files to create your finished track, ready to be burned on to CD.

As an alternative to audio files, you can also record MIDI data directly into Logic using an attached MIDI keyboard, which, in turn, can be used to control Logic's integral virtual instruments (or other third-party Audio Unit instruments), as well as external hardware MIDI synthesizers and samplers. Unlike audio recording, MIDI production provides an unprecedented amount of scope over both the performance and sound of the music, although it can sometimes lack the life and energy of music performed by real musicians.

Of course, it's highly likely that most projects in Logic will use a combination of both audio and MIDI recordings together to create the optimal presentation of your track. In that respect, the combined power and functionality of the Arrange window in handling such projects makes Logic a superb production solution.

2.3 the Arrange window

The Arrange window is the nerve center of your work in Logic, providing a range of different editing and arrangement features to piece your project together. Placed in the middle of the interface, and covering the majority of the screen, is the Arrange area, displaying a list of current tracks and instruments residing in the project (in the track list down the left-hand side of the Arrange area), alongside the various regions that form the structure and development of your song over time. By adding or deleting tracks or moving regions around the screen, we can visually build up the structure and arrangement of the song accordingly.

Springing up from the sides of the Arrange window are a number of other functional "areas." These areas relate to activities involved in the production process and the tools of editing, arranging, and mixing audio and MIDI data. For example, in the initial stages of production, you might need to input the various signals to be recorded, checking their respective recording levels and making a suitable "monitor mix" — in this case, opening up the Mixer tab at the bottom of the Arrange window. Later on, you might want to import some additional audio files — using Logic's Browser — or edit the timing of a MIDI performance using the Piano Roll.

The idea with Logic's Arrangement window, therefore, is that it can provide a dynamic working environment, optimized for the tasks you need to carry out at any point in time. Although it's possible to open and shut many of these extra areas using on-screen tabs, or double-clicking on regions, it's well worth memorizing some of the important keyboard shortcuts so that you open them "on the fly." Importantly though, whatever additional area you decide to open up, you'll still have some overview of the project's arrangement, allowing you to keep a handle on how your edits affect the entirety of the track.

2.4 Editor Areas — Mixer, Sample Editor, Piano Roll, Score, and Hyper Editor

Opening from the bottom of the Arrangement window, the various editor areas within Logic allow you work with and edit your project in a number of different ways.

Mixer (Keyboard Shortcut — X)

The Mixer balances the respective levels of the tracks included in your project, as well as instantiating different signal processing plug-ins (like reverb, compression, or equalization) to process each mixer channel. In addition to audio mixing, the Mixer is also the primary port of call for using virtual instruments (like synthesizers, samplers, and vintage keyboards), allowing us to create music completely within the realms of Logic. Alongside the Arrange area, the Mixer is undoubtedly one of the most important day-to-day production tools used in Logic.

Sample Editor (Keyboard Shortcut — W)

The Sample Editor provides detailed, sample-accurate audio editing of a given region in the Arrange area. Although a large amount of audio editing can be achieved in the Arrange area alone, it is the Sample Editor that really allows us to comfortably work with low-level details of an audio recording — precisely setting edit points, for example, or applying unique "destructive" editing techniques such as reversing, silencing, or time compression/expansion.

Piano Roll (Keyboard Shortcut — P)

The Piano Roll editor is the main MIDI editor in Logic, used to edit MIDI information that in turn controls virtual instruments or external hardware synthesizers and samplers. Using an intuitive display of note information based on the position on the piano keyboard (on the vertical axis) and the horizontal axis displaying both the note's starting point and duration, Piano Roll offers both unparalleled precision and ease-of-use for MIDI editing. Using the extended editing functions of the Piano Roll, you can also transform and edit MIDI information in ways that would be extremely time-consuming (if not impossible) to perform by hand.

Score (Keyboard Shortcut — N)

In addition to providing a useful way of visualizing and editing MIDI information for musically literate users, the Score editor is the vital conduit between your raw MIDI recordings and a finished printed score readable by real musicians! Although not everybody will want to use the Score editor, it does illustrate Logic's intention to be a versatile and competent music production tool in the widest sense.

Hyper Editor (Keyboard Shortcut — Y)

This final form of MIDI editor offers a more specialized solution to working with controller data — like volume or pan — as well as offering an alternative means of programming and creating drum tracks. Information is presented within a unique series of vertical beams, allowing you to quickly draw in controller sweeps, for example, or complicated drum patterns full of sixteenth notes. As with the Score area, the Hyper Editor might not be to everyone's tastes (there are alternative ways of achieving many of its main applications), but it does form an interesting alternative for working with several different lanes of controller data outside the Piano Roll editor.

To change the respective proportion of screen devoted to the main Arrange area and the various editors, click and drag on the thin gray line between the Arrange area and bottom editor area. This allows you to optimize the view based on your current priority — for example, expanding the Mixer when you need full access to its compression and equalization settings or using a minimized Mixer (with just the main fader positions viewable) when you want to quickly rebalance the mix in relation to the arrangement.


Excerpted from Logic Pro 9 Audio and Music Production by Mark Cousins Russ Hepworth-Sawyer Copyright © 2010 by Mark Cousins and Russ Hepworth-Sawyer. Excerpted by permission of Focal Press. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents

1- The Logic Concept, 2- Logics Pages, 3- Getting Connected, 4- Starting a Project, 5- Audio Regions and Editing, 6- MIDI Regions, 7- Creative Techniques in Logic, 8- EQ, 9- Wave Burner, 10- Working with Multimedia, 11- Screen sets, 12- Installation Guide

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