A digital music composing program

A digital music composing program

Decades ago, there was no sign of digital revolution in music. There were musical instruments and there were sweet music played with the real instruments. At that time, all music performers strictly needed to  perform together.  That used to be a tough time for music recording, since record producers had to pay performers extra for over and over retakes. So music production was costly and quality music production was limited to people with heavy pockets.

A Synthesizer

A Synthesizer

Gradually some electronic music equipments were came in notable uses in the mid of 70’s. Music producers took time to adapt these electronic equipments in their studios since the equipments were not as sophisticated as analogue equipments at that time. These equipments, called Synthesizers, are used for recording the sound and some for producing sounds.

Introduction of  electronics gave music production more flexibility and quality. The electronic synthesizers gave producers infinite number of musical sounds. And a number of new kind of music came in light. And quality in music and sound kept going higher and higher.

After revolution of personal computers, Music production got more storms of development. It got a lot of new things in music. Like Digital Work Stations (DAW) and Virtual Instruments which changed the music production’s methods.

You can record vocals and each music instrument separately and then mix all of those on a computer based audio work station with infinite flexibility. Today, almost every studio, big or small, uses a Digital Work Stations. These DAWs give music perfection and a very high sound quality.

Roland Piano Keyboard

Roland Piano Keyboard

Virtual Instruments (Software Synthesizers and Software Samplers) are computer programs or physical equipments, which synthesize sounds or make sound of real instruments. There is a huge number of available software synthesizers. All you need is a good computer, virtual instruments, a good Digital Audio Workstation, a Piano MIDI keyboard (similar or same thing to the Roland, Yamaha, Korg keyboard, which you see a lot in different music concerts or TV etc.) and a creative music mind. You might also need some equipments like mixer controllers, microphone for recording vocals etc.

Usually virtual instruments/synthesizers are used along with recording with real instruments and performers. But there are large amount of music now which are done using only virtual instruments.

These digital things gave birth to types of music which were never possible with classical ways. Now there are some of music for which you will need 4 or 6 hands to play with real instruments. Another advantage of these computer based composing is that composers can compose music with roughly sounding virtual instruments and music sheet based composing programs and later do final recording with real instruments and performers. And of course, you can produce very high quality music without needing to record with real instruments sometimes.

These technologies gave a golden chance to try composing music to people who could never afford going into music composing due to financial issue etc. Now they can write good piece of music just on PC and show their creativity without spending much.

A Virtual Music Studio

A Virtual Music Studio

However many people argue that this type of music is fake music and music made by real instruments is the real music. I would like to say to them that you are talking same like, when a typewriter guy asks a page/ graphics designer that he/she is a fake designer; because typing on typewriter is the real typing and page designing. So don’t be typewriter age person and accept technology. Still you need to use a creative mind to compose music like you needed before and skills on music sheet and piano keyboard. Only thing less is that it’s in reach of so many people who can compose good music but couldn’t  afford music instruments, studios and performers. (Some old fashioned composer have problems with it because they can’t put their steps with technology though). Also those people need to understand that these technologies have given birth to music type which are not possible with real instruments at all. After all, music is piece of sound which you enjoy; music is not a circus which  necessarily needs to be performed live.

Virtual instruments’ quality is going better day by day, but it’s still hard to use these in final music instruments for conventional music types. Making those instruments on computer is harder than hiring a performer with real instruments. So still real instruments are used mostly in professional productions.

Today digital technologies are integral part of music without which, there is no modern music.

PS – I’m also a rookie music composer, using digital methods primarily.

I live at a place where people know that Windows is the everything in the computer operating system world. Few people use Linux distros though, but Macs are very very rare things here. In the world, most of personal computers use Windows, while Mac  computers and Linux based OSs have their little shares too.

Personally, I prefer Microsoft Windows based PCs for the most. For it being easy to use and it supports largest number of softwares and hardwares. Most of people in the world use Windows, so help and support is fantastic always. With windows you have softwares which do stuffs what you can only dream with Mac or Linux. And gaming… gaming means Windows. But also, since windows are most popular, so there is risk of malwares a lot as well. But do not worry, there are numbers of anti-virus programs available for Windows. Windows based PC is the best choice. With Windows you have right to choose what you need.

Apple Mac, is good for people who just want to stick with their works, without doing anything extra (or people who don’t have to do much with the computer).  Mcs are usually more expensive and you don’t have options to choose with Macs. Macs were once known for their good look, but now most of people would find Windows Vista/ Windows 7 looking better than Mac OSX. Apple tries to show that Mac is stylish and zestful and Windows is dull,  while with no much games etc available for Mac and with a dull grey looks, Mac doesn’t seem to stand before shiny and dynamic Windows which suppors most of games and fun stuffs available. There are some malwares seen in Macs these days too. Mac is used by graphic designer, video/audio editors a lot. And you might have a try with it to do something different too, because you must be seeing Windows around you so much.

Linux isn’t an operating system itself. It is actually a technology and there are number of Operating Systems based on Linux. Biggest plus point with Linux Operating Systems is that they are mostly free and have so many free programs. Ubuntu is most famous Operating system of Linux type. And It’s absolutely free. it comes with inbuilt office suite (called Open Office, which is very similar to Microsoft Office) and a graphics/photo retouching suite (similar to Adobe Photoshop). You have a number of other free useful programs available to install for free on Ubuntu.  Ubuntu doesn’t look as shiny as Windows Vista/7… but it can. If you want some shininess in you computer like Vista/7 then try Kubuntu, a shiny version of Ubuntu and still free. (Ubuntu with KDE installed is best option, click here to know how to do this). And usually, Linux is virus free.

In nutshell, I can say, Windows is yet the best option for most of us. As an alternate, there’s Mac, but it really doesn’t stand as good as Windows based PCs. If you want all free and yet useful, have a try with Ubuntu.

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