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Do you use a slower-downer program?
Transcribe 15%  15%  [ 5 ]
The Amazing Slow Downer 35%  35%  [ 12 ]
Other 35%  35%  [ 12 ]
I don't use a slower-downer 15%  15%  [ 5 ]
Total votes : 34
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 Post subject: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 4:31 pm 
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I'm a great fan of Transcribe from Seventh String Software, been using their program as my primary tool when learning tunes for years. How about you?


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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 4:56 pm 
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I use Audacity for this purpouse. Works great.

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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 7:56 pm 
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Location: Kickin' it Braveheart style...
Here's a couple of demo videos I put together a while back showing Transcribe in action:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rY846dfCrv0&fmt=18

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PpuBWeheYA&fmt=18


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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Fri Aug 06, 2010 9:12 pm 
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I have the Amazing Slow Downer and while it does indeed slow things down nicely, I found the exported mp3s a bit lacking; the tempo didn't seem rock steady to me. (And it wasn't a recording of me playing, which explains many tempo problems.)

However, this was a few years ago and maybe they have improved, or maybe I didn't export it right. They do have great customer service; when I upgraded computers in 2008 I discovered my unlock code for my software no longer worked, as I'd bought it in 2006. I emailed them a copy of my receipt and they sent me a new unlock code within 24 hours.

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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 12:26 am 
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I used to use CoolEdit to slow things down. It got the job done, but it sure was tedious. ASD was the 1st commercial slow down software that I tried; I liked it, bought it and haven't looked at anything else. I haven't noticed that it handles mp3 files differently from wav or cd audio. It all seems the same to me.

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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 6:52 am 
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I use Audition, but Audacity does exactly the same thing for free.

I just change the sample rate. This cuts the frequency in half. All the software that maintains pitch does so at the expense of detail. I'd rather hear the details and hear it an octave lower.


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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 5:22 pm 
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I've used Goldwave for years. It's a lot more than a slowdowner; does all kinds of sound editing. You can change the pitch and tempo independently and save a file that way for practice purposes if you like.

Tony

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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2010 8:19 am 
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I just play the record at 45 instead of 78 :P

but srsly, i would use CDP or Pro Tools, but those are the tools i have on hand, i have yet to see any evidence to suggest that one pitch/time strech system is better then another in any aspect other then user friendlyness.


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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2010 9:03 am 
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I just use QuickTime - works great...

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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Mon Aug 09, 2010 5:53 pm 
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What was the portable tape recorder - Marantz? Nagra? Nakamichi? - that used to be popular for fieldwork recording because it had an easy 1/2 speed playback switch?

I've been using an older version of Transcribe for years. For me, it's easy as pie to use and it has a very handy combination of features.

That said, as I was transcribing some tunes this afternoon, it occurred to me to put in a minor contrarian caveat about an underlying premise of this kind of software. Namely, that slowing tunes down is a good thing.

Don't get me wrong ... When I'm doing an close transcription of a recording, I want to dig down to a level of detail sometimes on the order of milliseconds. And for that, running a tune as slow as 10% of normal speed with pitch preservation can't be beat.

But much of the time I'm transcribing at normal speed, simply using 1) the markup features of the software to conveniently identify phrase points and parts for repeated listening, and 2) the waveform display as an additional, visual cue to articulation. Speed and pitch change don't matter, and any audio editor will do the trick. Once an entire tune, or at least a part, is in my head, I write the whole thing down in one go.

Learning tunes in real time is both an admired and acquired skill, and to some degree a part of the skill set of every good trad musician. So like many tools, slow downers have their place. But they shouldn't be used reflexively as a substitute for developing the direct listening ability that can give you tune acquisition without technical aid.

Probably preaching to the choir here ... :-)

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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Sat Aug 14, 2010 10:20 am 
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Hi,
I use Transcribe! because the waveform display makes it easier to find the starting and ending of the phrases etc. I want to loop. I found this to be quite cumbersome and unsatisfactory using AmazingSlowdowner.

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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 2:24 pm 
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Have been using S8Tunes by some japanese guy (forgot his name, sorry) for some time, but after I switched to a mac and didn't want to buy ASD, I got myself Audacity (open source) which does the job just fine.


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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Sat Aug 21, 2010 11:48 am 
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I typically use either Windows Media Player or QuickTime player.

WMP launches a lot more quickly so sometimes I just use that. But QT player is easier to control... I actually cannot remember how to make WMP show me the full set of speed controls. They've buried it under some context menu somewhere. So with WMP I only remember how to play at half speed, and sometimes I prefer 3/4 speed. With QT player it's easier to adjust the speed to settings other than half.


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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Tue Aug 24, 2010 12:14 pm 
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MTGuru wrote:
I've been using an older version of Transcribe for years. For me, it's easy as pie to use and it has a very handy combination of features.
That describes me as well.

I also have used SlowGold from World Wide Woodshed for many years as well. It came as an add-on with another software package and I found myself using it a fair bit.

Feadoggie

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 Post subject: Re: Slower-Downers
PostPosted: Tue Aug 24, 2010 1:13 pm 
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MTGuru wrote:

But much of the time I'm transcribing at normal speed, simply using 1) the markup features of the software to conveniently identify phrase points and parts for repeated listening, and 2) the waveform display as an additional, visual cue to articulation. Speed and pitch change don't matter, and any audio editor will do the trick. Once an entire tune, or at least a part, is in my head, I write the whole thing down in one go.



Recently I discovered how useful the "spectral" view is.

Like any of the images on the first four links on this page:
http://jokerman.org.uk/lb/LosslessBob-what-images.html

If you zoom in (way in) you can easily see both what note is being played, and how long it is played for. What's really cool is you can see the various instruments separately. I've been using it recently for looking at pipe band music. The drum section is in a different part of the audio spectrum than the pipes. The spectrum display sorts them out. In the waveform view you can see the bass drum and the snare drums pretty well, but they visually mask the pipes. If you had two instruments playing in unison it probably wouldn't sort them out, but if they have a substantially different harmonic signature then it might.

I don't know if programs other than the Cool Edit -- Audition family have spectral view, but it's really handy for some things.


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