Summer Is Right Around The Corner

As a university professor, the calendar year is broken into two 15-week semesters. My life has been ruled by the academic calendar with its wonderful 3-month summer break for as long as I can remember. It was true while I was attending universities and has remained true since I graduated for the last time and began a rather schizophrenic existence in the professional audio engineering world AND the world of academia. One half of this split gives me the summers off and the other keeps me operating 7 days a week all year. But today, I smell the imminent arrival of summer vacation. Yeah.

It’s a time of making plans, catching up on things that have gone undone for too long, travel to a couple of trade shows and in a month, a trip to Boston celebrate the graduation of the youngest member of the Waldrep clan, my son Michael, from MIT grad school. I’m very proud of him and his perseverance…he hasn’t really enjoyed the city, the school, the program and just about everything else. That’s unfortunate but he managed to finish his thesis and is currently looking for the next thing. He’s smart and something will come along.

Here’s a brief list of things that I want to get accomplished in the next three months. They are not in any particular order.

1. The world needs a “High-Resolution Audio For Dummies” book and I think I’m just the guy to write it. The publisher, John Wiley & Sons, doesn’t accept submissions from anyone but a literary agent. I wrote to one but don’t hold out much hope. If anyone’s got a connection to an agent…I could pound out a “For Dummies” book over the summer. I think the time is right.

2. I’ve also targeted my “High-End Audio: From Production to Playback” book for completion this summer. I’ve made some pretty reasonable progress but the absence of teaching will free up the additional time I need to get it done. I’m finally admitting that I spend more time typing than I do engineering…but I enjoy it.

3. Complete the iTrax.com 2.0 website and begin to populate it with more content, headphones[xi] versions, more label transfers to 192 and 96 kHz/24-bit PCM files for remastering and distribution. We’ll be small operation but I’m striving to be the best.

4. Make some changes to the studio. I’m losing one of my tenants and plan to convert the “Red” isolation booth into a bona fide ADR room. Most of the sessions around here are film mix sessions. Being able to provide a wider array of film support services seems like a reasonable thing to do.

5. Move the current fulfillment room to the front of the building and make available an open space for some young, ambitious audio types to come in and benefit from having access to the equipment and studio. There were a number of mentors that helped me learn this craft and I would like to be able to help those that are just entering the field with practical education and opportunities to work on cutting edge equipment and projects.

6. I’m also committed to finishing my puzzle. In the 1980s, I completed a degree in art from CSUN in with a specialization in 3D art. My area of expertise was woodworking. I can cut a mean dovetail joint and won a big prize for a 1-foot long wooden “Swiss Army Knife”. It was big fun. I designed a 3D puzzle that I’m trying to get ready for a KS crowd sourcing campaign. Think Rubic’s Cube…this one will be Dr. AIX’s Cube.

So as summer approaches, it’s time to get a few things in motion…and this doesn’t even include the continuing search for a new puppy and the dozens of things that need my attention at home. Before I k now it, the fall semester will be here.

Dr. AIX

Mark Waldrep, aka Dr. AIX, has been producing and engineering music for over 40 years. He learned electronics as a teenager from his HAM radio father while learning to play the guitar. Mark received the first doctorate in music composition from UCLA in 1986 for a "binaural" electronic music composition. Other advanced degrees include an MS in computer science, an MFA/MA in music, BM in music and a BA in art. As an engineer and producer, Mark has worked on projects for the Rolling Stones, 311, Tool, KISS, Blink 182, Blues Traveler, Britney Spears, the San Francisco Symphony, The Dover Quartet, Willie Nelson, Paul Williams, The Allman Brothers, Bad Company and many more. Dr. Waldrep has been an innovator when it comes to multimedia and music. He created the first enhanced CDs in the 90s, the first DVD-Videos released in the U.S., the first web-connected DVD, the first DVD-Audio title, the first music Blu-ray disc and the first 3D Music Album. Additionally, he launched the first High Definition Music Download site in 2007 called iTrax.com. A frequency speaker at audio events, author of numerous articles, Dr. Waldrep is currently writing a book on the production and reproduction of high-end music called, "High-End Audio: A Practical Guide to Production and Playback". The book should be completed in the fall of 2013.

13 thoughts on “Summer Is Right Around The Corner

  • May 6, 2014 at 12:57 pm
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    Thanks for your dedication, Mark. You are making a contribution!

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  • May 6, 2014 at 2:09 pm
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    I’m really looking forward to “High-End Audio”.

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  • May 6, 2014 at 2:29 pm
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    Hi Mark,

    For item # 1, Amazon offers self publishing. I don’t know anyone who has used it but heard it’s very good especially if you don’t expect to have the next best seller.

    Regards,

    Brian

    Reply
  • May 6, 2014 at 2:35 pm
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    Ah yes, the halcyon days of post doctoral research; I really miss that. It was like being a student, yet I got paid a half decent salary. I got to travel around Europe for conferences and framework programmes. Now I work for a consultancy, good money but they work me hard and I have to wear a monkey suit (not literally of course).

    Reply
  • May 6, 2014 at 2:55 pm
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    Which trade-shows are you looking at attending over the summer? Congratulations to the graduate!

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    • May 6, 2014 at 3:58 pm
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      THE Newport Beach and the Capitol AudioFest in DC.

      Reply
  • May 6, 2014 at 4:04 pm
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    I’d make the puppy the top priority. Next, I’d have Jonathan Valin write the foreword for the “High-Resolution Audio For Dummies” book. Seriously, something I would like to see you discuss in your posts is Capstan or some other similar technology that might be affordable. I do a lot of transferring of my vinyl collection to digital. It is amazing how many records are off center or suffer from other speed issues. Speed stability is one area of digital audio that is rarely discussed when compared to analog reproduction and for me contributes significantly to overall sound quality.

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    • May 6, 2014 at 6:24 pm
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      I did talk about Capstan and Plangent Technologies…they are expensive.

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      • May 6, 2014 at 6:33 pm
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        My bad. I thought that you were going to do a follow up.

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        • May 7, 2014 at 7:17 am
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          I will add more about Capstan….stay tuned.

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  • May 6, 2014 at 6:22 pm
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    Dr. AIX The World needs to know more about “High-Resolution Audio”. So. “High-Resolution Audio For Dummies” book would just be the correct thing at this stage as people are already starting to talk about downloading “High-Resolution Audio”. Not knowing what is actually involved and what they are getting.
    Cheers
    Alphonso Soosay
    http://www.alphonsosoosay.com

    Reply
  • May 7, 2014 at 8:38 am
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    I will look in on you again Mark at the Capital Audio]fest. I should be able to make that one as it is not too far away.

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  • May 7, 2014 at 10:11 am
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    Look forward to the ‘High End Audio’ book and the High-Resolution Audio for Dummies is a great idea; let’s hope you could get it published. Enjoy your summer.

    Reply

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