Golden Eyes: Experiments with Audio..uhm... part 1!

Hello everybody,

I am starting a new series of mini articles/musings under the title: "Golden Eyes". It is derived from "Golden Ears" which is a comprehensive free hearing/listening test by Philips and I strongly recommend you to take it if you record, mix any music or you are an audiophile. As of now, 1798 people completed the last level. It begins simple but becomes incrementally difficult as you approach to the latest sections and I was literally trying to hold on to the fringe of my hearing to finish it :).

Golden Ears Quiz Last Level

I have been tutoring about recording, audio engineering, mixing, and physics of audio for a while. During those sessions I have come up with my version of Golden Ears as a fun quiz for my students. I cut out some sections of instrument tracks from one of my mixing projects and then applied various effects and artifacts/distortions on it and then bounced the results on separate tracks. Then, I asked the students to identify the process involved for each track.

A Fine Selection of Vintage Waveforms!

It was tons of fun to watch their reasoning and descriptions of the effects/artifacts they hear or see. Sometimes they tried to identify the process just by listening, and sometimes by doing A/B comparisons with the original recording. But other times they were identifying the process just by looking at the waveform and/or comparing it without any listening involved. Another approach we have tried is to subtract the original from the altered tracks and listen/see the differences only (that proved to be reeaaally helpful). So that gave me the idea of Golden Eyes and hence this post (the tracks used are copyrighted anyway, so doing this without any sound upload is also highly practical :D).

Let The Games Begin!

I won't be giving out the list of processes applied beforehand since trying to guess is part of the game! Another reason for writing about this is that I am introduced to the captivating glitch art / databending world by a friend of mine and as a start I want to explore applying audio processing on other types of data to create art (or world domination haha!).

Till next time,

Continue with part 2 here!

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