Now looking at definitions starting with letter "s"
SAP : Second Audio Program. A sub-channel used in multichannel television sound, often for second language programming.
SAS (Serial-Attached SCSI) a fundamental change to the seemingly evergreen SCSI standard that defines a shielded serial connection in place of the unshielded parallel connection of prior versions. As with SATA, another protocol originally a parallel approach, SAS provides higher throughput and higher reliability with reduced form factor and a lower overall cost when compared to the parallel version.
SASBF (Structured Audio Sample Together with SAOL these describe Wavetable syntheses. This is used in MPEG-4. A computer downloads and decodes structured Audio files containing samples, instrument definitions, and performance information. The decoded data is then used to re-create the music on the userís system.
SATA Serial ATA. See ATA
SATB : Soprano, Alto, Tenor and Bass.
saturation : In analog magnetic tape recording, saturation is the maximum magnetization that a tape can attain. Actual recorded levels are less than saturation because saturation distortion is introduced if saturation is approached, especially at low frequencies. At high frequencies, it is not possible to reach tape saturation because the signal itself acts to partially erase itself as it is being recorded because the high-frequency signal causes the record head to act like a tape degausser. This is called self-erasure, and limits the maximum level attainable in a tape recorder at high frequencies. Distortion occurs in an analog tape recording caused by input levels set in excess of 0VU. Setting a record input level too high on an analog medium is more forgiving than on a digital medium, and levels up to +3VU can sometimes be tolerated, but with a corresponding loss of high frequencies. See overs, headroom, retentivity.
saturation distortion : The distortion that results on magnetic recording tape when the applied audio signal is greater than its retentivity.
saturation point : The input signal level to a tape recorder that will cause the record head to produce saturation on the magnetic tape.
sawtooth wave : A geometrical waveform, typically generated by an oscillator, resembling a series of ramps. Sawtooth waves sound the same whether they rise left to right or fall left to right or a are series of alternating patterns (where the wave is sometimes called a ramp wave.) The sawtooth waveform contains all possible harmonics, both odd and even, giving a powerful and brassy timbre. The magnitude of each harmonic is the reciprocal of its number in the series, e.g., the fifth harmonic is 1/5 the amplitude of the first. See Appendix C.
SBM : Super Bit-Mapping. See dither.
scale : Music is made up of sounds pitched at relative intervals. The spacing of these intervals makes a scale. There are several principal modes each of which can be found by starting on the notes A-G and playing up the white notes (only) on a piano to the corresponding note an octave higher. They are Aeolian (A-A), Locrian (B-B, rare), Ionian (C-C), Dorian (D-D), Phrygian (E-E), Lydian (F-F), and Mixolydian (G-G). These can be transposed to start on different pitches as the interval pattern between notes is the essential feature.
The modern major and minor scales correspond to the Ionian and Aeolian modes, respectively, and form the basis of most western music: (F=full-step, H=half-step, T=three half-steps)
Within a scale, there is an ascending or descending series of notes that subdivide an octave into various and usually unequal pitch steps. The scales were collectively known as modes, and before about 1600 all were in common use. Between about 1600-1900 western music was centered on just two of the above scale patterns, the major and minor scales, which form the basis of diatonic harmony. Major and minor scales can begin on any note: those starting on C comprise the following notes:
scale construction : See tonic and whole-step. For example, the relative minor of a major scale starts at either a sixth up or a third down on the major scale. To find the third, fourth, fifth, etc. of a tonic, count up that number of scale steps. For example, to find the sixth of a tonic, the major sixth would be nine half-steps above the tonic; the minor is diminished, i.e., it is eight half-steps above the tonic. The fifth is seven half-steps above the tonic or below it. A fourth is five half-steps above or below the tonic. The seventh is ten half-steps (minor) or eleven half-steps (major) above or below the tonic.
scale distortion : Because the human ear has a sensitivity which varies with frequency and with loudness level, a musical ensemble must be reproduced at the same loudness as the listener would experience at the actual event if frequency distortion is not to occur. This happens because of the apparent amplitudes of the different frequencies will differ, with accentuation of the extreme high and low frequencies. Also called volume distortion. See equal loudness curves.
scaling : In a synthesizer or sampler, a method of relating a parameter to a control so that the degree to which the control effects the parameter can be adjusted. For example, a pitch-bend wheel might be scaled to produce a half-step bend for a given amount of movement, or it might be scaled tot give a whole octave. Nonlinear scaling between control and parameter will produce an output corresponding to some sort of curve. If there is a point on the curve where the output changes radically in response to input, this is often called a breakpoint. The scaling of keyboard parameters is called keyboard tracking.
scan : The way melody and lyrics are phrased together. A good scan means words and music fit well together and are easily sung and understood. Bad scan may occur when words such as "a" or "the" are sung on high notes or emphasized notes of the melody, sounding awkward or misphrased.
Scheiber matrix encoding/decod : The algorithm used in Dolby Stereo optical process to produce quadraphonic LCRS(left/center/right/surround) sound from two channels. In this process, common in-phase information would bleed into the center channel, while the surround channel would receive out-of-phase material. See SVA.
Schroeder diffusers : Used to construct ESS-type acoustic environments, aA structure comprising a number of wells of different, carefully-chosen depths. As a ray of sound strikes the irregular surface, instead of bounding off it like a mirror, it bounces out of each well at a slightly different time, resulting in many small reflections, spread out in both time and space. The operating range of a single diffuser is limited to about four octaves because, if the deepest well is deeper than about fifteen times its width, it begins to behave as a diaphragmatic absorber. The well depths are most commonly given by: where d is the depth of the diffuser, h is the well number, N is the prime number on which the sequence is based, and L is the wavelength of the lowest operating frequency. This is called the quadratic residue sequence.
SCMS : Serial Copy Management System. A DAT format subcode which prevents direct digital copies by inserting a copy-protect message when a digital-to-digital copy of a recording is made. Once the flag is in the subcode of a tape, no subsequent copies can be made from that tape. SCMS is designed into most home digital recorders, and is a problem when transferring material from a consumer-type deck to a digital workstation or when trying to make safety copies of recording sessions. SCMS does not, however, prevent copies made using analog inputs. Some pro-level DAT decks include an SCMS defeat switch or use AES/EBU digital interfaces which are unaffected by the SCMS flags. Pronounced "scams" or "scums."
scope : See anamorphic. Originally an abbreviation for CinemaScopeô.
score : (1) (noun) The original-music composition for a motion picture or television production, recorded after the picture has been edited. (2) The conductorís chart, containing all band parts of a musical arrangement, and the individual band parts. (3) (verb) To write the music for a motion picture or television production soundtrack.
scoring paper : Music paper with several (usually five) lines printed above each staff for other information needed by the composer while writing a score or jingle. These lines may contain elapsed time counts or SMPTE timecode addresses, summaries of on-screen action, dialogue and/or narration, required effects, etc.
scoring stage : A large recording studio equipped with synchronous multitrack or other recording equipment, interlocked film and video playback, and large-screen projection in the studio itself. Motion pictures and video productions are scored here, the conductor watching the image and footage or SMPTE timecode data, and conducting performers so that the finished recording aligns properly with the footage.
scoring wild : The recording of a motion picture or television score using non-synchronous recorders. The conductor defines timings for each part of the score from footage counts of the edited film, and seeks a performance that approximates the required timing to a close tolerance, perhaps one-half of a second. The wild score can be made to fit exactly if its playback speed can be adjusted during transfer, by editing in/out short pauses, etc. See also wild sound.
scrape-flutter filter : In tape transports, a smooth or low-friction, non-magnetic, low-mass flywheel installed in the tape path in the order to minimize the pressure with which the tape meets guides, rollers, or other potential sources of scrape-flutter.
scratch demo : A quick and inexpensive demo, usually done in a home studio, to give a client a rough idea of what type of music is being composed or produced under contract.
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