Meeting Topic: Reality is Not a Recording A Recording is Not Reality
Moderator Name: Jim McTigue
Speaker Name: Jim Anderson, New York University
Other business or activities at the meeting: Annual meeting: announcement of election results; handover of responsibilities to new officers and committee members
Meeting Location: Dolby Labs, San Francisco, CA, USA
"Reality is Not a Recording/A Recording is Not Reality" The former New York Times film critic, Vincent Canby, wrote 'all of us have different thresholds at which we suspend disbelief, and then gladly follow fictions to conclusions that we find logical'. Any recording is a 'fiction', a falsity, even in its most pure form. It is the responsibility, if not the duty, of the recording engineer, and producer, to create a universe so compelling and transparent that the listener isn't aware of any manipulation. Using basic recording techniques, and standard manipulation of audio, a recording is made, giving the listener an experience that is not merely logical but better than reality. How does this occur? What techniques can be applied? How does an engineer create a convincing loudspeaker illusion that a listener will perceive as a plausible reality?
Jim Anderson touched on these topics, playing excerpts of recordings he made over the years. He also gave background information on the recording sessions and conditions under which these recordings were made; at the same time he asked listeners to observe both their objective and subjective reactions.