143: Make Better Records Faster By Asking Better Questions


There are no dumb questions. Period. And it’s never a problem if you don’t know something. 

But that doesn't mean you can't figure it on your own, or shouldn't try to.


Book a free feedback call with Benedikt, the host of the show!

Think About It That Way:

  • There are things that really matter, when it comes to making great records. And those take experience and/or the help of more experienced people.
  • And then there are things that just need to get done but don’t really move the needle. You have to be able to figure out those “simple” things quickly and on your own, so you can use your opportunities to ask questions for the stuff that really matters.
When you ask more experienced people for a solution to a relatively simple problem that you could easily solve yourself, you’re wasting your time.

Because you won't move on and make progress until you have their answer and you’re missing out on a chance to ask really good questions that you just can’t quickly find an answer to yourself. 

Overall, it will take you much longer to improve your skills and results that way.


Here's a better way:

Let’s First Define What A “Simple Problem” Is. 


  • Understanding what a certain term means -> Google (or use a resource like this)
  • Figuring out a specific function in your DAW -> Read manual or watch your DAWs official documentation/tutorial videos
  • Asking “Should I do this or this?” when there’s only one way that works and a test will tell you immediately.

Ways to figure things out and ask better questions:

  • Believe that you can do it. Trust in yourself and your ability. You are an intelligent, reasonable, talented person. If other people could do it, you can do it, too! 
    Don’t get overwhelmed before you even try. Starting is the hardest part.
  • Read the manual
  • Ask for resources, instead of direct answers
  • Develop general "FITFO" skills (Figure It The Fuck Out) and become a problem solver
  • Run quick tests to get your answer quickly. There's not much that can go really wrong in audio, so don't be afraid to just try. 
  • If you find a great resource, study it and pay attention. Then quickly apply what you’ve learned, even if you don’t fully get it, yet. Many things will come to you as you go and actually practice.
  • Learn and practice the basics first, before you go to the advanced stuff. You’ll be able to ask much better questions, get much better answers and understand those answers better, if the foundation is there.
  • If you can’t figure out something seemingly simple or trivial, don’t get frustrated. Instead, ask yourself why that is. 
    • What is the basic concept behind this that you’re missing? 
    • Have you read the manual? 
    • Have you googled it? 
    • Do you have a resource somewhere that you forgot about or never really looked into? 
    • Have you tried to apply it and done a test?  
  • Having said all of this, be careful not to go down rabbit holes. 

If you look something up or try to figure something out and can’t find it quickly, like in a manual or a quick tutorial, and you can’t figure it out through trying, then maybe it is something you should get help with and ask the right person for advice! 

Automatic Episode Transcript — Please excuse any errors, not reviewed for accuracy (click for full transcript)

TSRB Podcast 143 - Automatic Episode Transcript — Please excuse any errors, not reviewed

Benedikt: Don't get overwhelmed before you even try. Starting is most of the time the hardest part. So sometimes we just get paralyzed when we don't know something and we don't even try to solve it because it seems so overwhelming and, if you just start

and try to solve the problem,

it becomes way easier pretty quickly, most of the time. Hello and welcome to the Self Recording Band podcast. I am your host, Benedictine welcome. If you're new to the show, this is the place where we show you how to record yourselves at your jam space at home, wherever you are, DIY style. thank you for joining us today. If you are already a listener, thanks for hanging out with us. if you've got any value out of the past episodes that you've been listening to, please go to Apple Podcast or Spotify, iTunes, wherever you listen to this podcast and give us a review there. Five Stars would be ideal and a couple of nice sentences about the show. This really helps people like you discover us so that we can help more people record themselves. And if you need any help with your next project, the next record that you're making, um, if you've got some roadblock, some questions. If you're, if you're stuck and you feel like you could need some professional help, You can go to the self recording band.com/call and book first, free one-on-one coaching call with me. So, You can get personal feedback on your music, on your recordings and mixes. You can get a step by step action plan roadmap for you to follow. You can do that on your own or together with me. but you get the plan, you get a strategy, you will see clearer and you will get answers to your most pressing audio questions right away. So if that sounds interesting to you, go to the self recording band.com/call and I can't wait to meet you. Now, today, as always, I'm here, not alone, but with my awesome friend and co-host Malcolm Owen Flood. Hello buddy. How are you?

Malcom: I'm great, man. How are you?

Benedikt: I'm grade two. Thank

you. Different time of the week, but, uh, feels like a Monday and 

this is good. .

Malcom: It does feel like a Monday. You're right. I got great banter this week. I saw Elton John this past weekend.

Benedikt: Holy. Like where did you, How

Malcom: Well, we, I went to Vancouver, um, for, for those that don't know, I live on a place called Vancouver Island, which is like super famous all of a sudden because the show alone has become like just incredibly popular. I dunno if you watched that

Benedikt: No, No, I'm not aware. 

Malcom: Oh, well, you should check it out. It's, Well, that's a, Everybody that has was, it knows what I'm talking about. They do a lot of filming on Vancouver Island, um, and they make it like, seem like the most remote, desolate place in the world. which is hilarious. Um, but yeah, so I went over to Vancouver and saw Elton John play, which was amazing. He's like 75 years old, played for over two and a half hours straight. It was just incredible.

Benedikt: Wow. And so you just went to the show, you bought tickets and got, went to the concert

Malcom: Yeah, I've had, I've had tickets for I think two years, maybe a little less than that actually. Maybe it's only been one year. But, yeah, of all of the concerts I've been holding on through the pandemic, this was the only concert that actually didn't get canceled. So it was really nice to finally go see a big show.

Benedikt: Awesome. And how was 

it like, Uh, I can, 

Malcom: he's, he's amazing. One of the, one of the best ever really. Um, he had, uh, like two drum kits and a percussionist with like a, pretty much a full kit in front of him as well. So that was interesting and sounded actually really cool.

Benedikt: So wait, wait, wait. Did they play together? The two 

Malcom: Yeah. Yeah. Like all three were happening at the same time.

Most of the time they were tight and, and 

really like complimenting their parts, which was kind of cool. and keeping it pretty sparse, which was, Yeah. I, I, I thought it was amazing. His piano skills are just next level. Still sing really well. It's, uh, yeah, really glad I got to see him. Cause I don't think he's coming back.

Benedikt: Yeah. Wow. That's, that's super awesome, man. Uh, yeah, that's something, yeah, memory 


Malcom: very good time. The only catch is that behind us there was like seven guys that were all on Trus and just wouldn't shut up

Benedikt: Oh God. That's the worst.

Malcom: why these guys might have thought this was a good idea, but

Benedikt: yeah, 

Malcom: man, 

Benedikt: Oh God. That's

Malcom: don't be that guy. 

Benedikt: No, that's hilarious. I bet they had a hell of a time though. 

Malcom: I bet They

had a hell of a time. You're right,

Benedikt: Awesome. Okay, cool. That's a really cool banter story. Very, very cool. So what are we talking about today? Actually, I completely forgot the, the topic today. So we we're talking about, how you can actually make better records faster by asking better questions. Uh, this is one of those episodes that some of our audience always loves when we talk sort of the big picture things or like the mindset things. I know that there's also part of the audience who just wants the technical howtos. This is not really a howto, but it will help you get to the howtos faster and make progress faster and solve some of the problems faster that might be holding you back at the moment. So first of all, I wanna, preface this by saying there are no dumb questions because we're gonna talk about questions that people have about audio, about music production. And I wanna say that there are no dumb questions. So it's not a problem if you don't know something. We all have things that we don't know and this will never stop. So it's in some, the things that I don't know and ask people about are pretty simple and basic, but you know, so there's no dumb question. but there are things that really matter when it comes to making great records, and those things take experience and or the help of more experienced people. And there are other things that just need to get done, you know, but they don't really move the needle. And you have to be able to figure out those kind of quote unquote, simple things quickly and on your own. So can, you can then use your opportunities to ask questions for the stuff that really matters. So that's what we're talking about. Like there's no dumb question, but sometimes it's a good idea to just try and figure stuff out yourself because when you get the chance to talk to somebody who's more experienced than you, you can ask really good questions and then get even. Better help because there are things that you just can't figure out yourself quickly. That's not ipo, not impossible, and, uh, not, not possible. So yeah, this is what I wanna say, but please don't get us wrong here. there are no dumb questions and when in doubt, you can always ask and nobody should ever feel, make you feel bad for that.

Malcom: No. No. So what this really boils down to is A, there's no dumb questions, but b. Asking somebody and relying on them for that information is not the best way to get that question answered. should absolutely be asking the question, but how you look for it and, and where you ask the question, uh, and how you try and solve that question is really what we're talking about. That's, that's the important thing. If you're relying on one person. As like, I can't move forward until that person gets back to me about that question. That's when you're running into asking too many questions. Well, the, the illusion of asking too many questions, but it's just, you're, you're just asking in the wrong place where you could go solve that immediately with our friend, the internet or, uh, a manual or. A YouTube channel, like all, all of these crazy things, which are all on the internet, I realize, . But, um, yeah, it's, it's just, I see it all the time in, in forums and I've definitely been, been this person too, where I just ask a question that I, I could solve immediately if I really wanted to, into a forum, and then I sit back and wait for somebody to, to write up an answer back and, you know, an incorrect one at that.


Benedikt: exactly. Yeah. Yeah, that's exactly the reason. If you ask more experienced people, For a solution to a relatively simple problem, you are wasting time waiting for them to get back to you, waiting for their answer, and you're missing out on a chance to ask a really good questions that you just can't quickly find an answer to yourself. And you could use the time waiting to just do it and move on. So overall, it will take you longer to improve your skills and results that way. And I'm gonna give you an example for that. so when I was when I, when I first started to make videos for my first video course that I've, I've. I was avoiding video before that. I never had a YouTube channel. I never had, I did some things that dabbled with it, but not really, and I avoided it because I have no idea about video. I was an audio person and video didn't interest me lighting and all of that. And, but then I wanted to make this course so I had to do it. So I got a camera and I, I started filming and I had no idea how the camera works, like the, per the, the proper settings. I didn't even know the terms, like whatever, um, shutter speed exposure, you know, the ISO and all that sort of things. I had no idea about those things. So what did I do? I knew I had a photographer, a friend, and she knew all of these things, so I asked her, how do I set the camera up? So, you know, and what, what, what does this mean? What does this button do? What's the iso? What is this and what, what shutter speed and all of those things that I just said. And then I waited for her answer and she explained to me what those things are and how I could use and like what I could do with them. And it took forever because she's also busy, of course, and she's other things to do than help me understand my camera. So it took me kind of forever to figure all of this out, but it helped and I could get it done. Could figure it out at some point. But then later I got a course on, video making and I was looking into YouTube channels and did my own research, and I found out that these things are like, they are everywhere. I could have just looked at the manual, I could have Googled it and found the YouTube video. The first lesson in this course that I bought was about all these things. It was like, Three minutes and they explained everything, you know. so this was me wasting time relying on somebody else to explain to me these basic functions when I could have just looked it up. And it's very simple to understand in, in the manual and everywhere basically. And, um, a better question in that example would've been if I would've looked up these things so I knew what there were and what you can do with them. And then I could have. in my situation with this light here and the window and whatever, and like, what would be a good position or an angle and how could I use this so I get this sharp and this not, you know, like specific things for my situation that I couldn't easily Google. That's where the experience of a person like that comes in and if she could help, could have helped me with that, that would've been really, really valuable because what followed after I knew. Basic things was a lot of trial and error until I found an angle and the right composition and all of that. That would be the stuff that I would really need help with from an experienced person. But I was asking the basic things that would've taken three minutes to do to research.

Malcom: I did literally the same thing just last week. I, I also have a camera now and, uh, yeah, learning to use it and having a blast, but I, yeah, what I learned in one video that was 20 minutes long, I spent a lot of two. Just like asking my, my, I've had a lot of videographer friends because I work in television, so I annoyed way too many of them for what I, at what a 20 minute YouTube video told me really concisely. and then actually when that happened, though, a great lesson and reminder kind of like was, you know, instilled in me, is that, I shouldn't be asking questions that I haven't tried to, uh, to do experiment first. Um, so, in the case of a camera, trying to figure out how to set the correct white balance, and all I had to do was just film a different clip at a couple different white balances, I realized that's technical for non camera people right now to understand what that means. but Then I just had two, I had a couple files. I could look at them and see what the difference was. It was as simple as that. It's, it's much better than even watching a YouTube video on it because I'm actually experimenting and getting hands on with it and seeing the difference. and why I bring this up is because in audio, I think more than anything, There's this option paralysis where people are worried about making the wrong step, so they don't make any step at all. So, I don't know if I meant to stick the guitar mic in the center of the speaker cone or off to the side, or if I'm meant to angle it. So I'm gonna just like research that for four hours instead of just quickly, recording three clips with the mic in different positions and seeing which one sounds best, right? It's, it's so much quicker, and you actually get to hear the difference. On your own equipment and well, I guess in that situation, none of 'em are wrong. They're just different. And you're gonna learn that as well. it's so important that you just try with failure being allowed.

Benedikt: Yes, absolutely. So while, while we're at this, let's quickly define what a simple problem is because some people might be like, Yeah, but what? What is then a simple problem that I could research and what should I ask? And by the way, we don't want to make you afraid of asking now, like if you have access to people or if you wanna ask us that, just send us an email podcast at the surf recording bent.com. Uh, and send me any question you have or put it in the Facebook group. And I'm always trying to help but do the same thing with my coaching students and everybody else. I'm just saying, it might be worth trying some things yourself and asking other questions that you really can't find an answer to. But if you ask me a basic question, I of course won't be, won't be mad and I will still, uh, answer it. so in case you, you're not really sure what I mean with a simple question. For example, understanding what a certain term means. So if it's just like you see something somewhere, a function in the door or something, or an audio term that you don't know, this is something where I would give you basically the same answer than like the manual would or a definition on the internet would. if it's just the, a term, you know what that means, what that does, that can be easily Googled or figuring out a specific function in your doll if you know that for example, I don't know how to set, a loop or whatever. It's things that every dog can do, but they do differently. Or if you search for a certain button in your dog, you know what you want, but you don't know where it is, that's something that you can just look up in the manual or quickly Google because you already know what you wanna do. You just need to find the button to do it. And, you know, it's your, a specific function in your doll, chances are if you ask somebody, they don't even know the do you're using or whatever. These type of things. Yes. Sometimes it's a little bit of a pain in yes to figure that out, but it should be Googleable Google level. Is that a word? I don't know. Now it is. 

Malcom: Total. Totally a 


Benedikt: Exactly. And uh, and then the third thing is what you just said, Malcolm, when you do, when you can do a test, especially I think when it's not about which one sounds better, because that can be tricky. I mean, it, you obviously should try that too, because some, oftentimes it's pretty clear what you like better. But that can be tricky if, if you haven't developed your ear and you kind of not sure what's better or what's better in the context. So I can, I can understand that people are like not confident enough to make a decision. But sometimes you can test things where there's only one way that works and the test will tell you immediately. So if you have two options and your question is, which one is noisier, or, you know, something like that, just try the two and then see which one gives you less noise, problem solved. or, you know, things where there's a clear right or wrong AB test thing that you can do. Uh, I've seen that happen sometimes and uh, but like that's something you can just easily do and try. this is sort of what, what I would call the basic questions. Everything that takes experience, where you would have to practice it a lot until you can hear a difference or where it's just some abstract concept or where you don't get the concept overall and you've maybe tried and read something or Google something you shouldn't spend a lot of time, or you shouldn't waste a lot of time going down rabbit holes. That that's, that's, that's also wasting time and that instead you should ask, You should be able to tell pretty quickly what you can solve yourself and what you need help. So let's go to some ways to figure things out and ask better questions. Some, some actionables. 

Malcom: because like that's really important is that learning how to answer your questions quickly. The questions that you have is problem solving, which is obviously a skill and obviously like a lead indicator in how well people don't generally do in life is the problem solving skills and ability to, figure things out. So that's, again, that's like, I feel like this, uh, this podcast episode keeps boiling down into. Things, and really it's about problem solving

Benedikt: Yes, ab absolutely, Absolutely it is, and it's a, it's valuable in, in life in general, I think, and we all should listen to, to that advice, or should, should remind ourselves of that at, at times because. If you, if you are applying for a job or if you are, whatever, whatever you do, people will be, will be testing you and see if, if you are able to solve problems. And in audio especially, I, I can tell you for a fact that like anybody who ever got good at audio or like professional or started working at a studio or got offered an internship or whatever, these were always people who are good problem solvers. It's, it's never so much about the actual talent or the audio skills and stuff. Obviously heon is also important, but. the people who did, who do well are the ones who can just solve problems themselves and save everybody in the, on the project, like time and energy. And because they just, you can just trust that they will figure out a way.

These are always the best people. When I bring on people to the team, that's some one of the first things I, I do. I just give them, you know, sort of, things I want to get done without telling them every single step. Just because I might later give them a process that's sort of perfect, but I wanna figure out in the beginning if they are able to figure it out, the missing pieces and do it anyways, basically. So that's some something that a lot of people do, and in audio it's like so important because believe it or not, I've been doing this. 10, 15 years, but professionally, more than 10 years and or like about 10 years. And still almost every day I come across something that I need to figure out. It's like something, you know, some small thing, something I haven't done before. It's like very often this happens. So you need to constantly problem solve and you need to constantly address a new issue that is in a track that somebody sent you and you have to find a way to make it work, you know? So it all starts, I think. You believing that you can do it? Because I think a lot of people who don't try to figure things out themselves, don't believe that they can actually do it. So I think you have to trust in yourself and in your ability and your intelligence. You are an intelligent, reasonable, talented person, and if other people could do it, you can do it too. So, Don't get overwhelmed before you even try. Starting is most of the time the hardest part. So sometimes we just get paralyzed when we don't know something and we don't even try to solve it because it seems so overwhelming and, and if you just start and try to solve the problem, it becomes way easier pretty quickly, most of the time. What was the same for me with the camera, it completely overwhelmed me. And once I started looking into it half an hour later, I was like, This is not so hard. Like, of course I will never be a pro videographer, but it's, it's not at all as hard as I thought it would be. You know, the 

Malcom: Yeah, totally. Yeah. Tying your shoes wasn't possible until you figured it out, right? Like it's just seems so complicated.

Benedikt: that's a good one. Yeah, for sure. Absolutely. I mean, and then there's the basic advice sort of. read the manual. Uh, how often Malcolm, when you download a new plugin, um, you get a new tool for the studio or something like, do, do you read the manual? Do you do that? How 

Malcom: These days I skim the manual every time cuz it's like so helpful in me, both learning how to like, make it do what I want it to do, but also discovering all the things that they don't really tell you about and that I end up using the plugin for. You know, like the amount of delay plugins I use as distortion instead of as a delay like, I mean, there's only two, but that's still crazy

Benedikt: Yeah. Yeah.

Malcom: you know, that's not what they're, that's not what I bought them for. And it's like, oh, they're just such great tools to me now. so, so yeah, there's, reading the manual, obviously it's there to teach you how to use it.

Benedikt: Yes. Yes. And the crazy thing. Yeah. And the crazy thing is I haven't done it for a long time, like I have to be honest, I thought. I'm mixed with my ears anyways, not with my eyes. So I can figure out what this knob does. And even if I don't know exactly what it does, I can hear what it does, you know? So I, I, for whatever reason I want, I didn't wanna read manuals. And once I, like, thought about it again and like, thought like it would actually be a good idea to read the manuals. And once I started doing that, I discovered so many functions and hidden things and plugins that I had no idea exist. That was like, how dumb was that? Like, I should have read this a long time ago. It would've saved me so much time, and it would've been, it would've made so much more sense. Some of the concepts on some plugins I got completely wrong because they are called the same, but work differently than on others. And it was things like that where I was completely wrong. and, you know, so I absolutely reap manuals. just today I had an example where I, I actually absolutely had to read the manual in this case because what's on that plugin doesn't make sense without a manual, because I got the. the oven, plugin by plugin lines. I dunno if you know that 

Malcom: I haven't checked it out, no. 

Benedikt: that's by Mayor Applebaum, the, mastering 

engineer. He has a hardware unit with handy amps. I think he has three. One is called the oven. One is called the Stove, and one is called the Toaster, I think. And, and all of them have, like, they don't have. Parameters that are familiar. They have things like you can switch between gas and electric and then you can set the temperature and then you can cook or broil or whatever. You know, all these things. And so I had to read the manual because otherwise what am I doing here? 

Malcom: Yeah. Yeah. totally.

Benedikt: Yeah. 

And yeah, totally, totally. So in these cases, for sure, but there was a time when I wouldn't even have read that kind of manual because I was, I would be like, Well, I would just figure out what it does. So, no, the manual. Absolutely.

Malcom: I, I will say audio manuals are generally really good too. I don't, I find the plugin companies do a really good job in making it kind of fun even, um, the graphics and, and it's like, is a good thing. It's not like a, a Sony, like Blueray machine where you're just like looking at like, you have to skip through eight languages to find yours, and then it's in 

small print and 

Benedikt: yeah. 

Malcom: tells you that it's 

gonna give you cancer. It's, it's totally better than that.

Benedikt: Absolutely. It's actually, it's actually a tutorial sometimes even because they oftentimes include like examples what certain settings are starting points for and whatever. It's sometimes this, Yeah, it's, I think there's a lot of value in doing that. Absolutely. Cool. The next one is something I, uh, I wanna talk about too. It's like, Sometimes it's better to ask for resources than for direct answers. So some I do that with my, like I, I have a coach, a business coach who helps me, run my, my multiple things that I do and, and not go crazy while I'm, I'm doing it. And sometimes he will just give me, instead of answering all my questions, he will give me a resource so I can look it up myself. And at the beginning I was like, Why do I have you as a coach if I have to look it up myself? But the truth is, I wouldn't have found those resources. And sometimes the resources he gave me are like, they're complex and it would take, have taken an insane amount of time for him to explain that to me. And it's, I even understood it better when I could read it myself. So sometimes, if you just ask somebody where to. Ask for the resource and then find your direct answers yourself. Once you have a good, reliable resource, um, that's better than asking the direct questions oftentimes. 

sometimes it's just about curating information because there's so much out there and you're confused and you don't know where to look. So it's absolutely okay to ask, but maybe ask someone to help you look in the right places and then figure it out yourself. So then you have, you can skip the step of going on rabbit holes and, and getting wrong information, but the actual answers you can read yourself.

Malcom: Yeah. If you're a repeat listener of this podcast, you have kind of curated us as something you trust and, and think is answering the questions that you have. and do the same with your YouTube channels. You know, subscribe to just the ones that actually consistently are. In a learning style that works for you and on topics that are helpful to you, kind of like you can curate what information you're getting. 

Benedikt: Then the next one is just on my list. Here is just the, the general thing that we already touched on. So develop fit FO skills and FIT FO stands for. Figure it the Fuck Out. this is just general skills where that you have to develop, as we said in the beginning, this is, this is something you have to train. and, and I, everybody has to practice that basically, and we all need to get better at that. But there's always, almost always, for the basic things, a way to figure it out. And we, we've talked about that. So just develop these skills in your life and always ask yourself like, is it, would it be faster if I just tried it instead of waiting for someone to give me the answer? 

Malcom: Yeah, there's a way to figure it out. You just have to have to do that, right? and yeah, I, I think like with go, going back to resources, That's actually more valuable, finding a good resource rather than getting the answer. One of the best things this podcast has ever done for me is our, our episode with Yes, Go Lohan. where we talked about room acoustics and, and gave some examples on how they influence the room and stuff like that as well. that episode has just been incredibly valuable because that is one of the most common things I have to coach people that are sending me tracks is, Okay, we need your vocals not to sound like they're in an empty room with a condenser microphone, and go listen to this, and you'll figure out not only how to solve that, like the answer which they want. You know, I could just be. Put some panels in there, you know, but they actually learn why and understand how and what kind of panels they should be getting or making. and, and like it all, they learn the whole thing they need, not just the, not just the answer. They learn the context as well. So getting a resource rather than an answer is actually way better in the long run.

Benedikt: 100%. Yeah, I, absolutely agree. talking about resources, by the way, I almost forgot a thing. resources and audio terms I, I told you about, like understanding certain, like basic terms and what, what they mean is would be a basic, um, sort of simple question that you could solve. And then, about the resources. I have a resource for you that explains almost all the common, I hope so, at least all the common audio terms if you go to the self recording band.com/audio terms, you'll find. It's a series of blog articles that are connected together. So one, there's one post, and at the bottom of this post there are different categories, different links that lead to other posts. And each of those has, sort of, each of those has all of them clickable. So they all go together, they work together like one resource, It's like a glossary or something you could say. And it's called What does the Damn Thing actually do? And how does this all work? this is the, the, the theme of the article, and you find it if you go to the self recording band.com/audio terms, and yeah, you find everything there. I've broken it down into general audio terms, the production process, describing all the steps of the process and what, everything's called and, and what you're doing at each step. Then there's routing and processing microphones, micro accessories, PREMs converters, interfaces, cables and connectors, computer software, audio files, like everything, and Every term that you could possibly come across when you research something can be found there. And it's searchable, it's sorted, like it's really a good research. I think there's quick navigation to find stuff. so again, the self recording ben.com/audio terms, this is a great resource where you find everything you need 

that might 

Malcom: There you 

go. I get asked those questions too, so Ha. 

Benedikt: Exactly. 

Malcom: the, The podcast was,

actually started because we wanted to just be able to point people to resources instead of answering the questions over and over again.

Benedikt: Yeah. I mean, this whole podcast is a resource, right? When somebody asks something complex, then we can just say like, something that's, that's, that takes time to explain. We can just say, listen to episode, whatever. but we, as I said, we are always happy to answer I, I just have to say that building this resource, by the way that I just mentioned, was. Real pain. it took forever because I put, you'll see if you do it, I put so much work into this, like I've explained every single thing, um, that I could come up with, and made it so that it all works together and stuff. So just check that out and I really hope people do and appreciate it because it's, it's been a lot of work and I think it's 

really, really, 


Malcom: awesome.

Benedikt: Cool. alright. Now again about resources. If you find a great resource, Study it and pay attention. I'm saying this because it, like, sometimes people read something or you, you give them something in hopes that it will solve their problem and then they just skim over it and like, not really pay attention or not really study it or, you know, skip part or whatever. Like if you get a resource, a good one, study it, pay attention, and then quickly apply what you've just learned. That's something I need to get better at. When I, for example, when I read a book and I, I read a lot of books. I like to read through the whole thing or read through big chunks of it, and I might make notes and and stuff, but then I will put the book away and then whatever, two months later, I wanna implement the stuff that I've learned. But by the time I will have forgotten half of it. So I have to go back and read stuff again, find stuff again, or I will just ignore what I just learned. So it's oftentimes much better to be a slower reader or learner. To stop whenever you found something valuable that you could use right now to stop and just implement it right away and then move on. It will take you longer to get through a book or to less through a lesson or video, whatever, but that way you will actually apply and take action because otherwise, what's the point of of like consuming all this information if you're not gonna do anything about it anyways? And that's the reality for a lot of people, myself included. I think you should study the resource carefully, quickly apply what you've learned. And even if you don't fully get it yet, you should still try because many things will come to you as you go and actually practice. So sometimes it seems a little vague or you don't really know what to do with this information, but then you should just try and apply it anyways. And then oftentimes through doing it, it will make sense. That's at least often the case, for me. I would like, I would just encourage you to do that because I know for a fact that we can sometimes read something, think we don't understand it, put it away and never think about it again. And then have, we haven't made progress, but sometimes we just let to let it, uh, have to let it sink in and, um, try it and then it clicks. And don't wait forever before you apply, because otherwise you'll have forgotten.

Malcom: Right? Yeah. studying resources. The only thing I would add to that is for some reason, when we all graduated high school, if anybody is listening that's still in high school, remember this too. We stopped taking notes while we. Study things, and I don't know why. , if you're watching a YouTube video, write notes. You can write 'em on your computer in an app or on a little notepad, whatever. It doesn't really matter if you ever look at 'em again. You just retain information better if you put it into your own words. and it can be bullet pointed, like it honestly doesn't seem to matter that much, but it helps so much. Just make some notes. It, I think it's worthwhile if you do it in a place that you can go reference it again, but, yeah, make notes that that's really what it boils down.

Benedikt: 100%. Yeah.

Malcom: Make notes while you listen to this podcast unless you're driving

Benedikt: Yeah, then don't make notes. Yeah. . so, that's one thing, Malcolm, I'm sure we, we both are guilty of that too. Uh, which. Learn and practice the basics first, when you learn something new before you go to the advanced stuff. I know that it's so much more fun sometimes to dive into more advanced things or some trick that we just discovered, before we even ready for that. I, I do that so often and I did that, when I started audio. I did that when I was starting with video. I still do that sometimes with things so. I think you'll be able to ask much better questions and get better answers and understand those answers better if the foundation is there. So, When you learn new concept, you learn a new skill, a new thing. Try to get the basics out of the way. First stuff that you can solve yourself, and then go to the advanced stuff and then ask questions and because you could be asking the right questions, but maybe you're lacking some of the fundamental basics knowledge so that the answers you will, you're getting don't really. So you might be asking the right question. You might be asking something that really takes experience and that you can't figure out yourself, but the answer will maybe not be as valuable and helpful to you because you're, you're still lacking some of the basics. So still, again, do those things first. Figure them out, and then it will be easier for you, of course, to understand the advanced stuff. And I just know that this is a, a thing. We all do this. Everybody in in audio does this. Everybody, um, wants to know about things that they are not ready yet, basically, before they get the, the basic stuff.

Malcom: Yes, I, Oh man. Me and camera land right now preaching the amount of toys I wanna buy that I have no business owning.

Benedikt: Oh yeah. Oh yeah, for sure. That's another way of procrastinating that I love to do myself, where I, I think like, I can't start, I can't start making my first video that nobody's gonna see anyways before I have all these tools and all these perfect things and the perfect setup and all of that. And yeah. Yeah, I know that.

so, yeah. also, Again, this should be encouraging and we, we don't wanna, discourage you from asking questions or we don't wanna make you feel stupid. So if you can't figure out something seemingly simple or trivial, don't get frustrated or mad at yourself. Like, instead ask yourself why that is. so ask yourself, what is the basic concept behind this that you might be missing? Um, have you read the manual? Have you Googled it? Do you have a resource somewhere that you forgot about or never really looked into? Do you have a resource? Have you tried applying it and, and maybe done a test or something? Just ask yourself why it doesn't click. And if it doesn't click, then it's totally okay. Then ask a question and, and don't get frustrated and, and think you can't do it. 

Malcom: Move up the ladder to, uh, to finding somebody that you think would know and, and ask them in that situation. A hundred percent. it, it's never, Yeah. This. Isn't meant to make you not ask questions. We, we keep saying that, but I feel like some people really need to understand that that is not the point of this at all. Um, we're, we're trying to make it so that you can get more from the questions that you have. Um, it's totally okay to ask questions, and choose those people that you ask, you know, wisely as well. You wanna make sure you have good mentors in your life and, in different areas. People are specialists at different things. You know, make sure you're asking somebody that actually knows as well.

Benedikt: Oh yeah, that's a good one too. So easy, especially nowadays on the internet, so easy to follow. People who just constantly give bad advice and um, or the wrong advice for your situation might not even be bad advice, but maybe something that works for somebody but not for you. I can't tell you how many. Business books, for example, that I've read that are a perfect resource and a perfect thing for like a big corporation with tons of employees, but completely the wrong thing for what I'm doing here. but you know

Malcom: that's why the podcast is so great. Cause we have time. It's long format, so we have time to give context. There's so many, like YouTube videos, for example, where they're, they're meant to be short, so people watch the whole thing consumed. It's all about just getting views and because they've trimmed it down so much, the context is just removed. So you're like, Oh. You should use a large diaphragm instead of a condenser microphone, something we talk about on this all the time, but it doesn't tell you why, and then you end up doing it for the wrong reason, on the wrong instrument. Even like it. All of that context is, is the most important part,

Benedikt: Yeah, I so much, I, I can tell you how often, again, like when, um, for example, how often metal bands or somebody in a, in a rather extreme sub genre, that has like pretty strict, you know, a pretty strict, like not boundaries, but there's a frame sort of that you, a ballpark that things need to be in, in order to sound right. And certain things you can and can't do, in, in these genres. And I, there's, it's been so often where people from genres like that come to me. Thinking they need to do something like they saw somebody do on, on YouTube who does, I don't know, jazz or classical recordings or something completely different. You know, they just think the mic technique is the mic technique no matter what. And they come with, they use completely different things. So classic example is a lot of metal bands wanting to do modern. I had this quite often where metal bands wanting to do modern, precise technical metal. asked me if it would be a good idea to try like the, the Glen John's sort of Bonham method on drums and stuff, you know? I mean, that is a great technique and for some stuff it's, it's awesome. But if you want really Yeah, exactly. If you want precise, technical, fast metal music that's polished and modern, that's not what I would start with. And, but they see somebody that they trust on the internet and he shows the technique and it sounds awesome, and they don't get the context. And that's where that, where that comes from. So,

Malcom: Yeah, perfect example,

Benedikt: Yeah, and, and it, you know, it's not your fault if that happens to you again. It's like you don't know better. So of course you hear advice, you think it's good, but you have to, always keep the context and the genre and stuff like that in mind. And again, get goes back to a trusted resource in your field, um, and you listen to those people. All right, So, I and I, yeah, about the frustrated, getting frustrated thing. I just wanted to say that I've seen so many people. Beat themselves up because they don't understand a simple concept, and then they don't make any music at all anymore. Or they, they stop for a while because they're so frustrated and they feel like they can't make progress because they've been at it for so long and still can't seem to, to get better. And I just think, don't, don't forget that this is about music and art and it shouldn't be frustrating. It shouldn't be a pain. It should be fun. As we said last time, no one's gonna die if you make a mistake or do something wrong in audio, right? It's not the end of the world. And I know these projects are important to you and you wanna make progress, but it's. it's, it's, yeah, It's not the end of the world if you don't know something. If it takes you a while to figure things out, you should still try. And before you know it, you'll, you'll have overcome this, this roadblock, and it happens to all of us. So don't beat yourself up. Don't feel stupid because you don't know something. still try to figure it out. Still do your tests and if you really can't, then just ask somebody. but don't, Yeah, it's, it's not that as, as bad. yeah. Okay. Now having set off, There's the other extreme tooth that I want to talk about real quick. So, We told you to do your own research to figure things out, to try things before you ask so you can ask better questions and make progress faster. But I would, I also have to say, please be careful to not go down rabbit hole, so don't do the exact opposite and not ask anymore, but just do your own research and figure things out on your own. That's a recipe for a disaster as well. That's exactly why we offer this podcast and the coaching and the courses because we know that we can help you make progress faster. So, there is value in other people giving you advice and there is value in asking questions. We do it all the time, and as Malcolm said, you need a mentor, if you wanna get better at something and get good at something. So please don't go down rabbit holes and waste time on your own. there's a balance, so if you look something up and try to figure something out and you can't find it quickly, like in a manual or a quick tutorial, a single video, a couple of minutes and, and you can't figure it out through trying. Then maybe it is something you should get help with and ask the right person for advice. So don't think that you have to figure out everything on your own now, and, and please don't make that mistake because there are a lot of people like that too. And I am also one of those people sometimes where I just like to figure out things myself because I think because I'm sometimes too proud to ask questions because I think I'm supposed to be an expert in this, so I, I will be able to figure this out, right? And then I sit down and, and Google for two hours and instead. You know, sending Malcolm on a message and asking him if he knows a solution to, for that, you.

Malcom: Totally. Another point would be that there's often more than one way to get something done. Right. So yeah, you might figure it out on your own, which is awesome. That's super good. but there might be a better way to do it. There might be a quicker way to do it. You might be getting one step along the way that is affecting something else you haven't noticed yet. You know, there's, there's all these different situations. Bouncing off how you solved a problem with a community and being like, Hey, like I did this to, this is how I'm tuning my vocals these days with this tool, using these, these different tools and that's working for me. What do you do? And people can be like, Oh yeah, I do something similar except for, uh, I notice that, you know, The, the like. Things got a little weird if I cranked them up too high in the pitch unless I changed this setting. You know, there's all of these different ways to improve and refine a process as well that you can only get through community and learning from others.

Benedikt: Yes, 100%. yeah, so. Don't, don't waste time either way. There is a balance. if you can't figure out quickly, obviously ask, but try first. See if you can do something yourself. It will be quicker for you. You will be able to ask better questions, and ultimately, if you find the right balance there, you'll make progress so much faster because you'll find solutions for the easy stuff quickly. You'll know where to look. You have your curated resources. I would highly recommend, by the way, creating, like having a system for that, for example. Folders on my computer, on my Dropbox so that I can not only access it from the computer, but from the phone as well. I have folders there with things I've downloaded, Checklists, resources that I've downloaded. It's an education folder or like in an resources folder. Different things for different things that I can access from anywhere, and I don't have to search for a long time. It's just there. I know where it is. I can quickly access it. Look something up I have on my browser. I have folders with bookmarks. Um, that's, I have a lot of bookmarks and like website websites that I bookmarked, and I have them organized in folders up there. So there's one called Education, and if I click that, there are all my online courses that I have, and if I click on one, I can access this course. And there's like, Other free resources, videos and things, it's all sorted. So if I wanna know something real quick, I don't have to remember where it was or look it up, I have my curated list of resources and I can quickly click on one and find what I need. So I would highly recommend you do something like that. yeah, and if you do that, then you will make, again, so much progress, so much faster. You'll have your created resources, you'll have the ability to figure things out, you will. You will remind yourself of just trying something in certain situations. And if you quickly go through these things and can't find the answer, then you hopefully know some, somebody you can ask like the two of us or the community, and then you ask, and that's how you, how this all will be so much faster for you.

Malcom: absolutely.

Benedikt: to add to this Malcolm?

Malcom: I don't think so. It like, again, there's, there's a couple key takeaways. It's like, fail as fast as you can. So number one, just trying things and experimenting is the best thing you can do. you know, in a, in a situation where, The, the result isn't gonna have to get shown to the world. Maybe, you know,

Benedikt: Yeah.

Malcom: and then ask questions of course, but asking the right places, you know, um, you know, your, your expert friend isn't always the fastest resource. so, kind of work your way through what you think is gonna get you those answers and get you, again, being able to experiment as, as quickly as possible. Um, and then use your results and share them with within your community so that you can get refinement and feedback, as well.

Benedikt: Yes, absolutely. Um, the community by the way, is if you go to the self recording band.com/community, that's where you find that.

Malcom: Absolut.

Benedikt: So, to sum it up, because we mentioned a couple of resources actually on this podcast, so. The first one was the self recording band.com/audio terms. This is where you find definitions, explanations of all kinds of audio terms that might confuse you. then there is the self recording band.com/community where you find out community. And then there is the self recording band.com/call where you can jump on a free one-on-one call with me and ask me questions directly, and we can, talk about a strategy and a way for you to make progress super fast and make the record you've always wanted to make. So yeah, these are some resource resources that I want you. I want to leave you with . It's time to end this podcast and then . And then of course, I hope you discovered a new resource by discovering this podcast if you're new to the show, 

if you like it. Yeah, welcome. And if you liked it, please leave us a review.

Malcom: Okay, thank you very much everyone.

Benedikt: you. Talk to you next week. Bye.

Malcom: Bye.

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