Magix Sequoia 13 is a high-end DAW that has secured its position among the world's leading sound studios with features such as multi-synchronous cut, timeshifted broadcasting, spectral cleaning and the avant garde of mastering plug-ins.
Sometimes the most important thing isn't what you hear, but what you don't hear. The powerful Spectral Cleaning feature in Sequoia lets you remove unwanted noise (e.g. ringing cell phones) from your recordings without affecting the rest of the frequency spectrum. Your listeners will be grateful.
Spectral Cleaning is especially useful for post-editing live recordings and interviews containing noises from moving chairs, cell phones and coughing. Using conventional filters and complicated crossfade editing usually takes a lot of time and often results in changes to the useful signal. The spectrogram display (time on the horizontal axis, frequency on the vertical axis and color-coded amplitude) as well as A/B testing options make it possible to accurately restore the desired signal. Audio disturbances can be easily selected for removal with the mouse. Elements that have gone missing from the original frequency spectrum are recalculated into the recording using interpolation or transitions from the surrounding useful signal.
This setting allows you to change the spectrum view from linear to logarithmic. It makes sense to use this option when working in low frequency ranges so that low frequencies are triggered higher up, yet still display the entire frequency spectrum.
With this setting, you can limit interpolation to certain amplitudes in the spectrum. This means certain notes can be removed from the spectrum without influencing background signals. This range determines the volume window in which the set threshold can be interpolated. Quieter or louder signal components outside the area will not be affected.
To highlight special points, quickly jump between or delete markers in the spectrogram, use the so called "click marker" buttons in the Spectral Cleaning interface. You can set and delete new markers. Created click markers are marked with a "C" in the editing window's marker bar. The "Search clicks" button allows you to search the entire project for clicks and have them marked automatically so you can edit them as a group. You can set the sensitivity of the search using the corresponding knob.
Sequoia uses advanced adaptive filter technology to remove noise from recordings. Recordings made in environments with a high level of noise (e.g. air conditioning unit) tend to suffer from constant background noise and are often unusable as a result Using so-called noise prints, the DeNoiser contained in Sequoia can remove disturbing elements with little to no effect on the audio signal itself. For example, you can select the noise print of an air conditioning unit and calculate the noisy signal in your audio material in real time, allowing you to restore one-of-a-kind recordings in no time at all.
The DeHisser is an additional noise removal tool which eliminates regular, low-level "white" noise, typically produced by recordings, microphone pre-amplifiers or transformers. Unlike with the DeNoiser, a sample of the distortion is not required.
The De-clipper is a tool for removing clipping and distortions. Passages with clipping are recalculated, i.e. interpolated, based on the material immediately surrounding them. The DeClipping algorithm is suitable for material with clearly audible clipping, e.g. distorted piano or vocals.
The DeClicker removes crackling and individual clicking noises, which are typical on scratched records. The DeCrackler has been specifically developed to remove crackling noises from old records. The signal display shows you the edited material as a continuous waveform or a spectrogram. In the display, you can see at which position the DeClicker and the DeCrackler have intervened.
The Brilliance Enhancer can be used to compensate for sound leakage in the higher frequencies and restore brilliance to the audio material. In contrast to an equalizer, which only raises existing frequencies, the Brilliance Enhancer recalculates new overtones from the remaining signal and markedly refreshes the sound. The Brilliance Enhancer is particularly effective when used as a mastering effect for pop and rock songs to increase transparency and brilliance.
Sequoia offers direct connection to broadcast databases and automation systems, including DAVID DigaSystem, SCISYS dira! Highlander, TRACT Digispot and d'accord. Sequoia's interface guarantees seamless integration, whether for news, features or multi-track projects. Productions can be imported and exported from any workstation at the press of a button. Depending on the level of integration, audio files and even entire Sequoia projects are supported.
The entirety of the audio material and the Sequoia projects are saved on database servers. Automatic backup and deletion routines maintain data integrity at all times. Incremental and differential saving provide reduced network load and save a lot of time. Only project changes are saved, instead of complete projects.
Auto Ducking is a very useful production feature for coordinating background music and vocal recordings. This dialog-based tool manipulates volume curves and lowers the music level as soon as someone begins talking on another track. Edits are made using the volume of the audio material in the source track and can be applied to multiple target tracks.
Cue mode is a special live playback mode often used for special cue sounds in radio broadcasts and theater. The objects or object groups in this audio track can be played back in sequence while another track is recorded simultaneously. For recording radio dramas, for example, you can record a speaker and seamlessly integrate noises and pre-produced elements as the script calls for them.
When working on productions that rely heavily on the rapid flow of information, Sequoia's "Record independent of playback" feature makes it possible to listen to any part of the material from a live recording, to cut and arrange objects in the project and to export already available material. This makes it possible to delay playback of a live concert recording for radio listeners, as well as skip intermission. Alternatively, you can create an edited recording of a seminar and make it available for participants directly after. You can even export raw material locally or to a database before the recording is over (e.g. to allow an editor to preview the current status and content of a report). Sequoia's audio engine handles all of these tasks like a charm.
Sequoia can be set up for different users using the user administration. Each user can have his or her own settings (e.g. keyboard shortcuts, color settings, toolbars and crossfade presets). The local user administration allows the administrator to grant or deny users access to certain hard drives. Sequoia may also be set up so that users can change program options while they are working, but the software will open with the administrator settings the next time it is launched. All Sequoia system settings can be saved in a container file to make it easy to transfer settings from one computer to another. When you put Sequoia on a new system, you can decide which settings to transfer (e.g. general settings, display settings, window positions, project templates, etc.). These containers can also be used for network login, where they are stored in a network path to serve as user or group profile images. This lets you centrally manage all user profiles on a server. Users can log in on any workstation in the network with their personal settings. It's also possible to start off with the default settings on every new network login or to automatically transfer settings changes to the network profile. All these features make it easy for administrators to set up and manage even a large number of workstations.
Sequoia offers a professional source destination cut feature, which is frequently used for classical productions when combining multiple recordings into a final composition. This method is especially effective and intuitive. Two display areas let you view and play back source and destination tracks simultaneously and independently of each other. Both areas can be navigated, zoomed and played independently. You can navigate to the source material while playback is running in the destination area in order to get the next cut set up. The actual editing takes place via markers.
In and out markers in the source material are used to indicate that the material following the edit command at a marker position should be pasted into the destination track. You can apply 2, 3 or 4-point cuts. Depending on the use, cuts located after the pasted marker are shifted accordingly or (when working with images) are kept where they are. Selecting the source is very easy using the keyboard shortcut for the source list. This method can be used to quickly perform editing processes that would otherwise be very time-consuming.
Multi-synchronous cut makes it possible to minimize the search for similar audio material and accelerate the editing process. MuSyC adds an overview project to the source destination cut by displaying takes according to musical similarity following an analysis of the source material. A multi-track recording take is represented by a single object. If a section of music has been recorded multiple times, the takes are arranged together and displayed in terms of time. This makes it possible to make sound changes and cuts, even between takes recorded with slightly different tempos. Cuts are always made at the correct position, removing the need to search for the beginnings of alternative recordings. Cuts made in the overview project are carried out in a multi-track destination project which can then be further edited.
The crossfade editor offers the option to make exact cut adjustments and to design object transitions. All crossfades are computed in real time, meaning modifications are immediate and can be played without any intermediate calculations or delay. A special advantage of this is that the unused material is visible to the left or right of the crossfade and can be listened to if needed. This also makes extremely precise adjustment of the editing points possible for the transition. Keyboard shortcuts and mouse instructions can be configured freely to offer users customized operation. All fade characteristics can be changed (e.g. length, curve characteristics, position in the audio material), different fade variations can be managed via snapshots for quick comparisons, and different playback commands can be carried out in order to evaluate transitions as a best as possible.
Finding parts of songs that are musically similar to one another takes a lot of time, especially in multi-track projects with lots of individual takes. Sequoia's "Find audio" feature helps you out by searching through entire projects for musically similar material and reporting the results back to you listed according to the rate of similarity. This easy-to-use yet powerful feature makes searching for similar material much easier and is useful for swapping out individual audio objects in a single project.
For the avant gardists among the mastering engineers, Sequoia provides much more than just a familiar working environment. Sequoia's mastering area not only contains excellent plug-ins, such as linear EQ, but also streamlined workflows and data exchange in line with industry standards (e.g. DDP export).
Sequoia lets you burn CD masters directly from a multi-track project or an audio project. This means that the whole process, from recording to master CD, is covered by Sequoia. The CDs produced are 100% Red Book-compatible and can be sent directly for pressing. The CDs can be configured to include copy protection, UPC/EAN, ISRC, pre-emphasis, and CD text. In order to reduce the bit depth to the 16-bit CD-format and preserve the highest level of quality possible, Samplitude includes POW-r dithering. Developed by the POW-r Consortium, this patented algorithm works on a psycho-acoustic basis to permit word length reduction with a very high degree of usable signal dynamics, with or without noise shaping. Audio material with higher sample rates may be burned in stereo or Surround to audio DVDs. Audio files are burned uncompressed (linear PCM) according to the DVD audio standard.
Sequoia supports professional file exchange between mastering studios and pressing plants. DDP masters are mastered CDs that aren't burned to audio CDs. They are digital data provided with a checksum that are sent to the pressing plant to guarantee that the production is absolutely free of errors. It's also possible to import DDP masters for editing or to compare them to the original project.
The Sonoris DDP player is a standalone application contained in Sequoia and can be used to check DDP masters that you have created yourself or received from others. You can playback tracks and track transitions, see all PQ codes, ISRC, MCN and CD text data, and automatically check projects for RedBook compatibility. The DDP player can read DDP 1.0x and 2.00 formats.
Sequoia can read and write to Broadcast Wave files in accordance with EBU Tech 3352 ISRC. This is an important step towards optimally supporting mastering engineers working with modern, file-based workflows.
An important feature in Sequoia is loudness metering, which has become one of the most important topics in the radio world in recent years, and is rapidly taking over from known peak-based metering methods. Up until now, peak control using peak levels (-9 dBFS as a rule) has been the standard in radio production. Peak limiters were often used, which limit an audio signal's dynamics, thus negatively affecting sound quality. Loudness metering takes a different approach. In contrast to peak metering, the loudness measurement is integrated above the time.
In combination with the introduction of open standards for peak control there are reliable ways for engineers and producers to describe subjective loudness in countable terms. In Sequoia, you can switch between EBU R128 and ITU-R BS.1771 loudness measuring on the fly. ITU Recommendation BS.1770-3 is the international standard in loudness measurement.
In addition to loudness normalization, ITU-R BS. 1770-3 also provides a measurement recommendation for digital audio peak levels. Normally, the peak values are determined in accordance with the sample rate by reading individual sample values. However, on account of the system, it's not possible to verify that the samples correspond exactly to the audio peaks, which arise as soon as the signal is processed or the wave form is reconstructed. Due to the inaccuracies of a sample peak meter, it's not possible to avoid clipping or distortion in the analog output if the individual samples in the original aren't at full scale. So, a normal peak meter cannot represent "real" peak values. Inter-sample peaks identified by oversampling by a factor of 4 can now be displayed and allow you to see "true" peaks.
An audio file's loudness parameters are displayed in the file manager and can be calculated there for a limited number of files. When switched on in the Broadcast Wave Editor, loudness parameters can be written to audio files when exporting and bouncing. The loudness parameters are stored in standardized metadata fields for broadcast wave files.
In addition to outstanding recording functionality, Sequoia offers extensive mixing tools, ranging from stereo radio commentary to film mixing in different multi-channel formats, such as 5.1, 7.1 and even 12.0 Surround. Different audio formats up to 32-bit floating point and sample rates up to 384 kHz can be combined without any format conversions. Sequoia takes care of the sample rate conversion and possible decoding of compressed audio files in real time during playback.
Sequoia supports the touch, latch, trim and overwrite automation modes. Automation curves are displayed graphically and can be easily edited. In addition to volume and panorama, you can also automate VST instrument parameters and plug-ins at both the track level and object level.
Highly advanced digital algorithms, outstanding effects plug-ins and continuous use of floating point calculations ensure that the sound retains its nuances, even following extensive digital processing and accumulation of individual signals.
Mixing within a DAW is increasingly important today, especially for uses that entail limited space, such as mobile music recordings or news productions. Working with VCAs (Voltage Controlled Amplifiers) or DCAs (Digital Controlled Amplifiers) makes mixing and finalizing much easier. In Sequoia, you can control the channel levels that are assigned to a VCA group using a VCA fader in the mixer. You can assign as many channel strips as you want to a VCA master fader. Each existing channel strip can also be easily turned into a VCA fader. By displaying "ghost faders", changes resulting from adjustments made in the VCA Master can also be read in the individual channels.
In the Surround Master you can select "Surround downmix" as an output device and use various presets in the Downmix Matrix. Moreover, surround busses can only be routed to stereo busses. You can also set the Downmix Matrix here. The downmix is factored in during a stereo master bounce project, i.e. you can stereo bounce from a surround project when downmix is adjusted.
The audio material can be split into as many objects as you like and moved around on tracks freely. Every object may be edited with custom effects and fades (e.g. equalizer, time stretching, pitch shifting, and various VST plug-ins); even sending to individual AUX channels and the Surround bus is possible at the object level. This makes most time-consuming automation unnecessary. The object editor provides real-time access to every object setting. Settings are calculated at the object level in real time and can be changed at any time.
Being able to use complicated workflows can save you a lot of time during production. Sequoia's macro functionality lets you record, program and run custom command sequences. You can assign up to 128 macros to keyboard shortcuts for quick access. It's also possible to run macros through markers in a project.
Sequoia supports hardware controllers from SSL, PreSonus, JLCooper, Tascam and Yamaha, as well as all controllers based on Mackie Control and Mackie HUI. Sequoia also works with the Artist Mix, Artist Control and Artist Transport Artist Series controllers. These controllers are controlled using the EUCON protocol and require Windows 7.
Sequoia's video features make it possible to edit video material for dubbing and post-production. Multiple videos can be loaded into Sequoia natively. Make sure you use uncompressed (or minimally compressed) formats, since positioning and editing these is much faster. It's also possible to export videos from Sequoia. This is especially useful when video material has been edited or to create a preview copy for clients.
The video recording feature allows you to record audio at the same time as video. Recording can be done on any available recording device present in the system. For example, a reference video track can be recorded in order to document additional stage sound for editing and mixing later. It's possible to connect analog recording devices, such as webcams, video capture sticks and even professional video cards from Blackmagic (e.g. Intensity Pro and DeckLink), as well as DV cameras and DV converters (e.g. Canopus ADVC-110) through the FireWire port.
Independence is the ultimate sampler workstation for professional music production in the studio and for live productions. The first class Premium Sample Library with 70 GB of content and hundreds of instruments, arranger and step sequencer patches make Independence one of the most powerful tools for creating sample-based compositions.
Sequoia offers integrated OMF/AAF support, making it possible to exchange projects between programs and platforms. AAF is the preferred exchange format due to its larger feature set and open documentation. Together with the project export for Video Pro X and compatibility with other products from the Samplitude/Sequoia family, Sequoia can be seamlessly integrated into almost every form of digital audio editing without slowing down the workflow.
Now you can display the SMPTE timecode of a timecode track using the time display in Sequoia. To do so, define the track containing the timecode in the form of an audio file as a timecode track. This is most relevant to post-production projects, so that a recorded timecode can be displayed as a reference when editing in Sequoia