2019 has been a year in which technology has overhauled the studio once again. Much-touted trends such as AI, which Hackernoon predicted would cause an industry shift, have been taken on with aplomb by the likes of Sony and IBM. With the latest technology in hand, producers and performers will be able to produce high quality sounds like never before and in simply unprecedented levels of fidelity.
360 reality audio
One of the biggest innovations coming out of this year’s influential CES conference was Sony’s 360 reality audio. Innovative tech designed to be used with wireless noise cancelling headphones, the software used by Sony renders sound in a 360 degree space – as opposed to the ‘flat’ space used by x.1 setups. For producers, this will allow experimentation to create truly mind-bending and immersive sound on a whole new level to before.
Production joining augmentation
Early September saw legendary producer Mark Ronson posting an interactive Instagram video that has been seen as a bellwether for new, augmented reality music tech. The video deploys technology that, according to experts, will be able to engage with listeners and perceive minute details alongside with submitted preferences. The result will be data and trends that can be brought back into the studio and deployed alongside conventional technology to make bespoke tracks.
Processing power in the studio
According to the Incorporated Society of Museums, an influential UK based union of professionals, the most impressive music tech developments are currently in a time-honored arena – DAWs and sequencers. According to the institute, the incorporation of machine learning and ultra-fast new processors (such as that being deployed by Google Stadia) is making the DAW industry a lot more competitive and open to new innovation. What does this mean for producers? Essentially, and especially for electronic music focused studio professionals, there will be a lot more variation and possibilities at hand for future projects. The expanding of technology behind the scenes can only be a good thing, and will create a situation where new music really is ‘new’, as opposed to being rehashed version of previous projects.
Music technology is experiencing a renaissance, with producers and technologists never shy to marry technology with sound. Whether it’s software that enables new ways of listening, such as 360 reality, or the use of sophisticated machine learning in augmented production, the message is the same. Music production is getting easier, more expansive, and most importantly, more creative.
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