Computer-Music.com contains articles and product reviews related to making music using computers and creating 3D computer animation in sync with music. Computer-Music.com is also the home page of  Donald S. Griffin, an experienced professional composer, sound effects designer and audio consultant with an emphasis on computer games,  video games and internet music and sound effects. For pricing and contract availability send email to: DGriffin (@) Computer-Music (.) com

Computer-Music.com  contains articles and product reviews related to making music using computers and creating 3D computer animation in sync with music.
Computer-Music.com is also the home page of  Donald S. Griffin, an experienced professional composer, sound effects designer and audio consultant with an emphasis on computer games,  video games and internet music and sound effects. For pricing and contract availability send email to: DGriffin (@) Computer-Music (.) com



 

<< to previous page <<

to this article's front page

A Word About Physical Layout

If you are not thinking ahead you can waste as much time moving around gear and furniture as in any other time wasting endeavor. Remember that musical gear is always attached to other stuff with at least one cable and often four or more. If you want to move your mixer to a different rack you may have a real nightmare as you try to find the original sockets for fifty or more cables. Then you have to test each signal path. This is if you are lucky enough not to have to buy a lot of new longer cables because now much of your gear is farther from the mixer than it used to be. Longer cables also mean more noise in the signal. I like to keep everything in front of me and everything in reach. The problem is there is only so much space in front of me and my arms can only reach so far. Compromises have to be made. Make them carefully. Good studio furniture can help a lot if you choose it carefully. I have a large music work station with my computer keyboard on a sliding drawer which leaves my desk top free for all my papers and notes. My video monitor is on a raised shelf straight in front of me. I hate neck and back pain from turning sideways or looking up or down. My audio monitors are on raised shelves to either side of my magnetically shielded video monitor. The old one got distorted by the proximity to the speakers' big magnets. This reduced the number of places where I could put speakers. There is a 4-unit rack space below each audio monitor but I need the CD player in one which takes 3U in that one leaving only space for some papers. The Other has the MIDI interface and two General MIDI synth modules because I need to see monitor the displays on all three. The remaining space is taken by a speaker switch which I need to be able to switch back and forth while listening carefully so I can't put it where I can' reach it easily. I have desktop space left but much of it is used by my power and data switches and modem and telephone. There are big rack bays in right and left body of the desk where drawers should be. Getting to the backs of those devices would mean crawling under the desk then making a u-turn and crawling back into the long tunnel of the desk itself. I suppose I could just use long cords and unscrew the units and slide them out the front to make back panel changes but that is less than ideal and how much gear can you place down by your knees and expect make good use of it? This leaves the areas to my left and right. I have a multi-tiered keyboard rack to my right and a long keyboard desk with hutch to my left. But with my K2000 and disks and fax and such on the right and long controller keyboard, VCR, TV and second computer on the left that space gets used up pretty quickly too. I squeezed in a tall, rolling rack on my left but that has pushed my long keyboard over a foot farther back behind my left shoulder which is not a good place to keep a keyboard to which you will want constant and easy access. Since most of you are probably keyboardists. I am sure you will want your keyboard right next to you if not right in front of you. That is not the whole layout but it is the central core of it.

(Since I wrote this three years ago some things have changed but not much. The general idea is to show the thought process so I left the above paragraph as it was.)

It has taken me about 10 years to arrive at this configuration which is only a few months old. Every new device brought with it a new set of considerations and lots of time was spent incorporating each new element into the whole. Often some new gadget seemed to have an appropriate place but if I moved something else to make room for it I would start a domino effect that would ripple from device to device, each needing to be moved because of some critical consideration which I had not thought about since I installed it. Still, the hours of thinking seem to be worth it when I can walk into my studio and flick a few switches and jump right into what I had started creating in the shower.

[HRule Image]

<< to previous page <<

to this article's front page

 

 

For questions or comments contact the webmaster at
(you will have to remove the parentheses and  spaces; sorry but spam is a problem)
 dgriffin (@) computer-music (.) com
Copyright 1996-2004 Donald S. Griffin - Computer Music Consulting. All rights reserved.
Revised: February 04, 2004.
Privacy Policy