Category Archives: Tools


Pro Tools, Nuendo, Cubase, Logic, or Acid?

Pro Tools, Cubase, Nuendo, SONAR, Acid, Digital Performer, & Logic. These are the most popular digital audio programs for recording and mixing music. With so many choices it can seem difficult to know which one you should choose but once you consider what type of computer you are using and what type of music you want to make you’ll find that many of the choices are eliminated which in turn makes your choice far easier.

There are a lot of things to consider when making this choice. The first is what kind of computer system you are using.

I am not going to tell you whether you should use a PC or a Mac as that argument long ago became tedious. You can create a top quality computer based music studio with a PC or a Mac. But what I am going to tell you is that you need to definitely consider your computer type when making this software decision as some programs only work with one or the other (or work much better with one or the other.)

If you are basing your system on a PC then you first of all want to cross MOTU’s Digital Performer and Apple’s Logic off your list as they are Mac only programs. I would also advise you to not choose Pro Tools if you’re on a PC.

Yes, I know Pro Tools is the “industry standard” but that’s mostly because people love to do what everyone else is doing. There’s nothing special about Pro Tools. Sure it’s a great piece of software, but so is Nuendo.

And the problem is that Pro Tools just isn’t a good choice for PC users. Currently it doesn’t even work with Windows Vista and while the next version is supposed to be Vista compatible we don’t know when that version will be available and even then, it will only be compatible with the “Ultimate” version of Vista (if you currently own the regular version of Vista that will be a $200 upgrade.) On top of that, even on XP Pro Tools doesn’t work nearly as well as it does on the Mac. It’s definitely a good choice for Mac users, but you should avoid it if you are on the PC.

So what’s left for PC users? Steinberg’s Nuendo & Cubase along with Sony’s Acid and Cakewalk’s SONAR. Acid & SONAR are only to be used by Windows based computer but Steinberg’s Nuendo & Cubase are well suited for both Windows PCs and Macs.

If you are looking for the best audio quality you can get (and you’re willing to pay more for it) and you do not use MIDI very much then Nuendo is probably your best choice. It’s also the right choice for those working with audio for use with video and for those interested in working with surround sound.

Cubase & Sonar are great choices for those who use MIDI a lot. But you shouldn’t think that these programs are only about MIDI, they are also great for recording and mixing audio.

Sony’s Acid is for loop based music like electronica and rap. Really, I do not think it is a very good fit for most people. Unless you make loop based music, don’t choose Acid.

Mac users will probably end going with Pro Tools but Digital Performer & Logic are also great choices. I would recommend downloading the demo versions of each of these programs and seeing which one works for you. You may also want to choose Cubase or Nuendo. Remember that software also works well on PCs so it may make you more versatile in a way to learn those programs.

Marvin J Markus


Gardening Tips – Buying the Right Tools for the Job

If you are an amateur hobbyist or just starting off on gardening, consider buying a garden tool set. They tend to be cheap but of lower quality. The advantage is that you will have almost the full range of garden tools needed to start a garden. Once you have gained more experience working on your garden, you can better assess your tool requirement and preference. There may be problems, which you can foresee the tools required until you actually work on the affected areas. Also, every gardener will have a collection of tools in which some tools are constantly used, while other tools neglected and forgotten. You can spend more money on better quality tools once you have a grip on your garden and your gardening requirement.

Maintenance of Garden Tools

When you are buying new gardening tools, you are likely to be faced with a choice between low price and low quality or higher priced and better quality tools. Good quality garden tools are designed to last, but they must be also be properly maintained. If you opt for cheap garden tools, maintaining them is less of an issue. When they break or wear out, you simply throw them away and buy a replacement.

A basic maintenance regiment for garden tools involves cleaning and oiling. Always remove all traces of soil and plants remain from your garden tools after usage. If necessary, dismantle your tool to get at the dirt. Hose down with water to remove mud and scrape off any stubborn dirt with a brush or a screwdriver. Cleanse and rinse thoroughly any tools, which have been used for application of chemicals such as fertilizer. Fertilizer is corrosive to metal. After cleaning, do not store away tools when they are wet. Allow them to air dry completely to prevent rust and wood rot. At least once a year, rub linseed oil into the wooden part of your tools to make them last longer. Before storing, wipe the metal parts of your tools with an oily rag after each use. Or use a spray to apply the oil and wipe with a clean cloth.

If you use your tools often, you can make a convenient shovel cleaner cum oiler by filling a small bucket with sand and a quantity of new engine oil. Push your metal tool into the oily sand several times to clean and oil at the same time. This neat DIY clean/oiler can also be used as a shovel stand.

You may be tempted to buy stainless steel tools, as they are more rust resistant. However, you should know that they are less robust than traditional steel garden tools. For certain functions such as garden fork and rakes, they are not a good buy unless the price is cheap. Be warn though, you may end up buying a replacement more often than you think.

Cindy Heller


Get Rid of Tree Stumps: Cable Puller That Works

We had a tree stump in the front , it’s diameter is about a little bit more than 4 feet, it had bothered us for a few years, we’ve tried chainsaw on it but nothing can go through it, lately we bought a cable puller with 4 ton capacity , together with my truck pulled the stump out without major effort!

Actually cable pullers are heavy duty pulling tools and can be used to do a lot of things, sometimes you even can use it in pace of ATV Winch to save money. The rated capacity of cable puller usually comes in from 1 ton to 4 ton(2200lbs to 8800lbs), the reach of the pullers is usually 6 feet to 12 feet, the higher the capacity, the shorter the reach, 1 ton puller can have 12′ reach while 4 ton puller will only have 6′ reach, but some extra heavy duty 4 ton ones can have 11′ or more. We usually call cable puller “Come Along”, by definition, a come along is a hand operated ratchet lever winch, so cable puller can be called come along, along with chain puller, chain hoist, hand winch, trailer winch. The difference between cable puller and other come alongs is that cable pullers are considered heavy duty tools, pull capacity can be 4 ton(8800lbs), while regular hand winch has 400-4000lbs capacity and mostly used to pull boat out of or lower boat into water from trailer, sometimes also called boat trailer winch.

You have to do your homework before you go out to buy a cable puller, get to know it’s features. A regular cable puller will have a cable guide , which keeps 2 wraps of cable on ratchet wheel, and you can release loads one notch at a time, so you can lower a vehicle or tree safely, ratchet wheel made of laminated steel, plated steel for rust resistance, drop forged steel safety hooks, 4 ton model will feature 5/16” galvanized aircraft cable, and all the cable pullers will have to meet OSHA and ASME specs. The cable pullers usually come with two slip hooks with safety latch, and some extra heavy duty ones have 3 safety hooks for enhanced protection.

For stretching, pulling, lifting and lowering, cable pullers are the best choice. To pull vehicles onto the trailer or release the vehicle off the trailer, to pull or tear down trees, to lift or lower heavy stuff in your house, pull the tree stumps out of somewhere, compare to electric powered winch, such as electric winch, cable pullers are inexpensive handy tools.

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