Assignments and Exercises

Here is a list of assignments and exercises for the course. Please refer to the syllabus for due dates.

  • Assignment 1: Recording

    Record several types of sound material for use in later assignments. Learn to route audio signals through an analog mixer to speakers and to the computer, optimizing gain along the signal path.

  • Assignment 2: Editing

    Construct phrases using the sounds recorded for the last assignment. Work in a digital audio workstation, chopping up your sound material, shaping dynamics, using effects.

  • Assignment 3: Short Piece

    Compose a 2-3 minute piece using the sounds and phrases developed earlier. Explore pitch-shifting and time-scaling your audio, and try some processing techniques using granulators, resonators, and filter banks, in addition to more standard production tools, such as EQ and reverberation.

  • Assignment 4: MIDI Sequence

    Learn how to record and edit MIDI tracks, using virtual instruments as sound sources. Work with quantization, humanization, velocity and duration changes, tempo changes, and synthesizer parameter automation.

  • Exercise A: Basic Patch

    Using VCV Rack, construct a version of the subtractive synthesis “basic patch” discussed in class.

  • Exercise B: Modulation

    Create a synthesis patch employing modulation of pitch and other parameters.

  • Exercise C: Sequencers

    Experiment with analog-style step sequencers to control pitch, filter frequency, and amplitude.

  • Final Project

    Compose a 4-6 minute fixed-media piece, using the technical resources covered in this course. We will hear your pieces in an informal class concert.