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  • Sound Design Installation

    Posted on July 5th, 2017 Jeremiah Joel Cheah No comments



    “Today all sounds belong to a continuous field of possibilities lying within the comprehensive dominion of music. Behold the new orchestra: the sonic universe! And the musicians: anyone and anything that sounds!”   – R. Murray Schafer

    The elevators are part of our weekday routine. It is safe to say that most people do not pay as much attention to the sounds you hear while you go up to the 9th floor from the ground. Our minds are usually in another place, thinking about university-related work or even the plans we have after our classes.

    This sound installation aims to highlight the buttons you hear in the university elevators. A unique feature the buttons have is that they are tuned and pitched differently. The sound installation was created with the vision of transforming a sound one would deem as irritating noise, into a harmonious blend. Accompanied by the ambience of the rumbling elevator, the button sounds activate from various positions in the room. The main idea is to listen to each button tone with as much detail as possible in the short timeframe it sounds.

    With this installation, I hope to leave you with the idea that anything can be compositional in the sonic universe. As R. Murray Schafer has said, the new musicians of the sonic space are anyone and anything that sounds!


    The sound installation went just as planned, with the major hiccup being the elevator drone file not being prepared beforehand.

    The hard panning  used on the track for the M-Audio speakers was effective in utilising the separate corners of the room. With the unique placement of speakers on the floor as suggested by Professor Matthew, each button beep was able to blend in together with the rest of the elements in the room.

    The overhead section could have been slightly better in terms of mixing. I felt that I should have taken advantage of the subpar quality of the speakers by incorporating a different type of beep sound to highlight the higher frequencies.

    The elevator drone sound could have been louder. In hindsight I did not prepare for the elevator drone file to play back from my phone, thus the quality was not as good as when testing was done on an iPad and another phone of better quality.

    The dwarf speaker produced exactly what I wanted it to sound, a strong button beep sound that is slightly muffled by the hard wood it is placed on.

    Overall, this sound installation project was a very good learning experience for me. Working with a space is definitely much more interesting as each space is different every time. This means decision making is a very unique process during the mixing. There are many things I could have improved but nevertheless I am happy to have been able to carry out this project.

  • Review of session

    Posted on June 19th, 2017 Jeremiah Joel Cheah No comments

    During class, we were introduced to Dwarf Speakers. This piece of technology enabled us to transform any hard surface into a speaker. It expanded our options in terms of how we could further introduce a more creative aspect to our sound installation. Professor Matthew loaded in a Selena Comez song and we proceeded to stick the small little powerhouse on any hard surface we could find. We agreed that the best results were when we stuck the Dwarf speaker onto the door, wooden ledge as well as the round wooden tables. There is a possibility of using multiple Dwarf speakers in the Collaboratory space to play around with sound sources located in various areas of the room.

    We also experimented with the built-in EQ of the Panasonic televisions to explore our options in terms of using them as output sources. We were not very impressed with the quality of the sound produced after playing music through them.

    We tried playing back a few recordings. Professor Matthew advised us to ensure our initial recording was as clean as possible. This was because several of our recordings had low sound.

    The M-Audio studio monitors were also made available to us. With a mixer connected to it we experimented with various sound levels. Professor Matthew played a recording of bees over a recording of children, so we could understand how the different sounds would come together from different output sources. It was interesting to see how the different levels from the TV speakers as well as the Dwarf and M-Audio monitors interact with each other.\

    It was discussed that we would have to pool our resources and use each others Macbooks to realise the sound installation.


  • Themes and Ideas

    Posted on June 19th, 2017 Jeremiah Joel Cheah No comments

    Theme/Idea 1: The nature of conversation that everyone overlooks

    - Several recordings taken to analyze the content of the conversations students were having.
    - Many students talked about various topics ranging from the latest lecture to their respective upcoming tests.
    - Possible to explore the blending of each conversation into the next.
    - Aim to stimulate the listener to pick out small details in conversations of recordings.
    - Possibly mixing in transitional backgrounds to highlight the different areas of the campus. Eg: Walking into a lift, from cafeteria to study area, different spots in the library etc.


    Theme/Idea 2: Natural environment of university

    Several recordings taken to highlight the natural sounds of the usual ‘hangout’ spots in the university
    - To record places like field/sports courts, general ambience of the cafeteria, a rainy day on the rooftop etc.
    - Similar with the first idea, to explore a sound installation that incorporates a smooth transition between each setting.
    - Aim to intrigue the listener with the sounds they can relate to.



  • SGFA Artwork Sound

    Posted on June 19th, 2017 Jeremiah Joel Cheah No comments

    We are family


    In this picture the sound of fighting tigers can be heard. The ferocity of the fighting tigers imply  animalistic growls and roars.

    From a different perspective, the tigers could also be playing with one another, suggesting excitement in their animal calls.

    Assuming the setting is in a grassland, the rustling of the greenery would be heard.

    Wind ambience would also be appropriate for this picture.