Created by record producer Alan Parsons and designer Stephen Court, the SOUND CHECK CD contains 99 tracks of practical material compiled as result of careful research and investigation into the needs of studio engineers, audio technicians, serious audiophiles, record producers and musicians. The disc has been designed not only to help assess the technical performance of a wide range of sound recording and reproducing equipment, but also to offer the best available musical, vocal and effects sources for experimentation and demonstration.
The disc has been designed not only to help assess the technical performance of a wide range of sound recording and reproducing equipment, but also to offer the best available musical, vocal and effects sources for experimentation and demonstration.
PINK NOISE 1/3 OCTAVE SPECTRUM ANALYSIS:
This section is intended for loudspeaker frequency response analysis. System response can be plotted and graphic equalisers can be set by reading each band on The Sound Check Response Analyser (or a conventional sound level meter). Track 1 is the reference tone and lasts 30 seconds. All other tracks in this section are at the reference level and last 10 seconds.
PINK NOISE TEST TONES:
These tones are intended for equipment alignment and are especially designed for active speaker set-up. Track 33 is a 1kHz reference tone lasting 30 seconds. Monitoring equipment should be set to a useful working volume and measuring equipment set to read 0dB. All other tones in this section are at the reference level. Phase checks are on Index 2, where appropriate, in 5 second bursts.
These are intended for sweep response measurements and are especially useful for checking system resonances. Track 41 is the reference warble and lasts 20 seconds. The sweeps are in one octave sections down from 1kHz and in one octave sections up from 1kHz – for easier frequency identification.
SINE AND SQUARE WAVE SPOT FREQUENCIES
This section is for recording and reproduction equipment line-up, analysis and fault finding. The square wave spot frequencies are also useful for bandwidth assessment and loudspeaker phase and time alignment. Track 45 is the reference tone, lasting 10 seconds. All other tones in this section are 10 seconds. All sine waves are at the reference level, -14dB FS. The square waves are at -20dB FS.
While the sonic complexity of music is widely recognised, the human voice is equally difficult to reproduce accurately and a voice recording that one is familiar with is a useful reference source. Before Sound Check came along, a good, unprocessed voice recording was very difficult to obtain, especially under test conditions. These 4 tracks provide that reference and start with Alan Parsons’ spoken voice. The rarely available dry, uncompressed voice of Luciano Pavarotti recorded live and Soprano Catherine Bott in a natural acoustic together with the dynamic voice of rock singer Steve Oveland complete this section of valuable reference recordings.
Rock and Pop engineers will find track 62 an ideal test source for limiters and compressors.
This section contains closely miked instrumental recordings without electronic processing such as limiting or compression. They contain subtle transients which define true high fidelity and which are often lost in the reverberation and processing of commercial records. These tracks are therefore invaluable for assessing the transient response and fidelity of audio equipment and for experimentation with effects units. These are original studio master recordings and in some cases intrument overspill may be heard.
Extracts from selected master recordings, specially selected to assess the various qualities of loudspeakers and sound equipment. Limelight, for example, has a very even frequency and dynamic balance throughout the audio spectrum and therefore is an ideal reference for overall sound quality. By contrast, Luv 4 Luv contains extremely high bass and sub sonic energy and is an ideal test for low frequency loudspeakers and their power amplifiers.
These sound effects provide extreme tests of dynamic and frequency range. The steam trains, the sub machine gun and the Chieftain tank are historical analogue recordings which have been digitally re-mastered.
A series of useful tools – a left/right channel ident; invaluable for multiple unit hook-ups, digital black for noise assessment, a tuning reference and timecode in all three standard formats for checking timecode-based equipment and striping code onto tapes.