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Creating Sounds – Equipment Should Not Steal Your Focus

When I first started to create music and sound effects in the late 1980s I only had a very limited amount of equipment. Well actually the only thing I had was an Amiga 500 computer to begin with. I was pretty happy with it and I was quite excited to have a computer where I was able to create music and sound effects.

My first audio equipment

I wanted to improve my skills as a composer and sound designer so I read a lot of books and articles about the subjects. I also listened to the work of others which soon made me realise that in order to sound as good as them I needed more equipment. Being fond of gadgets I happily started to collect gear while enjoying and creating music and sound effects.

This continued for years and I became more and more of a gadget geek (reading about equipment, planning what to buy next, etc.). Slowly I started to see that I had lost my focus and I had made myself believe that I could only make something great if I had a specific piece of equipment. I started to listen to some of old my work where I did not have all this equipment. I realised that my old work had something that my work at that time was missing. I had forgotten to keep it simple and I had forgotten that less is often more.

It made me stop my hunt for new cool equipment. I already had all the equipment I needed to make great stuff it was just up to me to create it.

New cool equipment is still nice to have but there is a big difference between need to have and nice to have.

The art is to know the difference.