Thursday, April 28, 2011

Music Editing for Language Lessons

music editing softwareWe recently found a series of videos made by a WavePad user as a guide for people just getting started with audio editing, and for using sound editing software to support use of music in language lessons. While many of the basics are covered in our WavePad video tutorials as well, if there is one thing I have learned, it is that sometimes hearing the same thing in a slightly different way can really help you pick it up. If you are looking for another source to help you ease into audio editing, you should check out this series of 7 videos covering some WavePad audio editing basics:
  1. Select and cut
  2. Splitting and trimming
  3. Saving files in different sound formats
  4. Changing audio track speed
  5. Changing audio track pitch
  6. Using slower speeds and looping to teach sections of a song
  7. Copying edited clips to a new file
So whether you are teaching or learning songs in another language, or you have any other audio projects, be sure that you have WavePad Audio Editor on hand. You never know when it might come in handy.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

New Orion File Recovery Software

New file data recovery softwareThe newest software program to join the NCH Software lineup is Orion File Recovery Software. Attempt to recover any files that you accidentally deleted from your hard drive or a connected external drive or portable device with this easy-to-use data recovery application. Use the wizard to guide you through the search process, narrowing results based on location, file type, or name, then recover any files that are found. You can also choose to permanently overwrite files to prevent future recovery.

Also be sure to check out Doxillion Document Converter, FileFort Backup Software and MEO Data Encryption Software for more file management solutions.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Express Invoice Super Options: New Invoice Customization

Our goal in developing an invoicing program has always been to produce professional documents that any business can use. To obtain a professional looking invoice we know it's important to do the following:
  • keep the clutter to a minimum
  • line up edges and blocks of text to keep the invoice looking clean
  • be organized
  • above all, value simplicity over flashy elements
One of the most requested features for Express Invoice is for complete customization of the final look of the invoice. One way to go about this would be to let the customer drag and drop the various pieces they need onto a template and generate the invoice from their vision, but we strongly feel that by giving more options we would violate the criteria laid out above. So, we compromised. While we want your business's invoices to stand out from the crowd, we don't want you to get carried away with colors, clip art, borders, fonts and kittens (you'd be surprised at what we've seen out there). Express Invoice Software Invoice Customization

On the Invoice tab of the program Options, you will now find a button for more invoice options, giving you the choice to add certain design elements and invoice options such as including a remittance slip, shading every other line behind the items list, or whether to show the discount column on the invoice. The options make Express Invoice even more versatile than before, making it a perfect fit for an small business, freelancer, or contractor needing an invoicing solution.

Need more small business solutions, such as accounting software, employee management software, or an automatic telephone attendant? Be sure to check out our other business software, all of which comes with a full, free 14-day trial.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Add New Dimension to your VideoPad Projects

Stereoscopic 3D viewing from VideoPad video editorTwo dimensions got you down? Wishing you could add a little something extra to your videos to make them stand out? In addition to new chroma key options, VideoPad now lets you export your finished movie for stereoscopic 3D viewing, yet another example that big things do come in small packages. Simply select the "Stereoscopic 3D" icon at the far right of the "Save Movie" window and set your options below - it's that easy. You'll have several options for stereoscopic output depending on your preference, although the default anaglyph imagery selection is the often the most effective way to produce a stereoscopic 3D.

While you won’t need a fancy new television to view your eye-popping creations, you will need two things: one is a set of 3D glasses with red and blue lenses and the other is a suitable way to view your content. For desktop viewing, I recommend Steroscopic Player. It’s both free and is well suited to view any 3D content you export out of VideoPad.

For more information about VideoPad or any other of our acclaimed video software products, visit www.nchsoftware.com/software/video.html

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

High Performance Document Conversion Software

4.5 Star CNet review for Doxillion document converter softwareIt is always nice to get compliments, and we love hearing from both customers and reviewers alike about what they think about our software programs. The editors at CNET recently gave us another compliment to add to our tally in a recent review of Doxillion document converter, saying, "We've tried many of NCH's tools and always found them to be good performers." Talking more specifically about Doxillion they went on to say:

"Doxillion is very easy to use, with a big green plus sign for adding files to the main list view. Highlighting entries in this list displayed their properties in the right-hand sidebar. We browsed to an output folder in the entry field beneath the main view, and then selected an output format and encoder options. All that was left to do was press Convert. Doxillion quickly processed our batch and saved the output to our selected directory."

CNET

You can read the complete review of Doxillion document converter from CNET on download.com. The next time you need to convert type of file, whether a document, audio, video, or image file, be prepared with our suite of converting software, and make file incompatibility a thing of the past.

Monday, April 18, 2011

New Mac Point of Sale Software

New Mac version of Copper free point of sale softwareOur business team has been working to bring our popular business software to the Mac in addition to Windows, so that businesses have more quality and economical software solutions available to them. The Mac release of Copper Point of Sale Software is just one more step in that direction, providing an easy streamlined retail checkout software application to make the checkout process quicker and more accurate for both your customers and your records, no matter which platform you prefer.

The Copper POS system works a like a cash register. You enter in the products you carry as well as any coupons or promotions that can easily be selected and applied to a purchase by the cashier at the time of check out. Using Copper will help eliminate errors in product pricing and tax calculation, and will generate customizable receipts for your customers. So if you run a retail store and you are a Mac user (or even a Windows user), you will want to take a look at how Copper Point of Sale Software can help you record your sales transactions.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Now In 3D

xkcd 3DOne of the favorite comics here in the office is xkcd, a somewhat geeky webcomic with math, science and technology themes.

For April Fool’s Day the site went 3D (XK3D). Since this foray into the third dimension lined up so closely with NCH Software's own 3D addition, with the new stereoscopic 3D video content support that was added in the most recent release of VideoPad (version 2.30), I thought it was the perfect opportunity to introduce any of our readers who are not familiar with xkcd to its wonders.

Note: if you're new to xkcd, make sure you don't to miss the hover over text on each comic as you surf through their archives.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Video Tutorial: Simple Slideshow Software in Action

See how easy it is to bring your digital photos to life and share your favorite memories with family and friends with PhotoStage slideshow creation software. Our recently finished PhotoStage video tutorial walks you through the process so you can see how easy it is to combine images, video clips, music and narration into a truly memorable slideshow movie.



Download PhotoStage slideshow software today to start making your own custom multimedia presentation to share with friends and family and preserve your memories.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Mac Video Capture Software

I am thrilled to announce that Debut video capture software is now available for Mac as well as for Windows. I have long appreciated the features of Debut for recording video from a webcam or video screen capture, even capturing video from an external video capture device. We use Debut in our office on a regular basis to record video clips for the developers to show them bugs when testing products and recording video clips for our tutorial videos.

While I have used the Windows version of Debut numerous time, and even turned several friends and family members on to Debut (Ask Dad: Debut is a Simple Solution ), since I have a Mac at home I too have anxiously awaiting the release of the Mac version for those numerous occasions when it would be the perfect solution for grabbing a video clip. Now that my wait is finally over I hope that other Mac users out there will be as excited as I am about this addition to our Mac software line-up. Download Debut video capture software today and let us know what you think.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Home Business: More Software to Help Business Run Smoother

Software for Getting Your Home Office Running (Part 5 of 5)

More software for small and home businessesOnce you have your accounting software in place and your telephone system set up, it is time to think about the other types of software that might help with your specific type of business.

For instance, if charging by the hour, you might benefit from HourGuard timesheet software to log the time you spend on projects for each customer for easier billing.

Use Reflect customer database to save, organize, and cross-reference information about your clients, and set reminders for yourself on events you should follow up on.

Another work-from-home profession is transcription, where Express Scribe digital transcription playback software, FastFox text expansion software and TexTally word counter can all be extremely useful in improving your efficiency.

Those examples are just the beginning of possible business applications that can help you run your home office more efficiently. Your time is a valuable commodity when you are getting a business off the ground, so it makes sense to find ways to streamline as many processes as you can. Some other software programs you may want to consider are:

Monday, April 4, 2011

Do More with Audio - Blog Carnival April 4, 2011


Here are this edition's entries to Do More with Audio:


Erik presents How Transcribing One Solo Can Entirely Change Your Approach To Improvising posted at Jazz Advice.

Stephen Fortune presents Making Automatic Music With The Audio Environment.

Cory Doctorow presents Measuring radio's penetration in 1936 posted at BoingBoing.

Bryan Keithley presents Guitar, Meet iPad posted at Finally Fast, saying, "Review of Apogee's new JAM plug in and play interface for the iPad. A great little interface device for folks looking to use their iPad as a portable studio."

Mr Audio Books presents The Essential Guide to Downloadable Audio Books posted at Audio Book Downloads.

U2TOURFANS presents On the road with U2 - U2 360 Tour News, U2 Videos, U2 Music, U2 Concerts, U2 Lyrics, Twitter, Facebook, Youtube posted at U2TOURFANS, saying, "On the road with U2 is dedicated to providing the best U2 experience from around the world. U2 Fans can follow via twitter, facebook, youtube channels and more."


You might also be interested in:That concludes this edition of Do More with Audio. Be sure to Submit your audio articles for the next edition.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Use What Works: Why a Podcaster Uses Switch Audio Converter Every Day

Guest post by podcaster Kole Ross www.koleross.com

We take it for granted that our tools do what we ask them to. If they didn't, we probably wouldn't use them anymore. What makes a piece of software great, however, is how easy it is to tell it what to do. For me, Switch Audio Converter is one of those great programs, and I rely on it daily.

I'm an underemployed podcaster, a part the digital serf caste. You see us around, the overweight or underweight bearded dudes with laptops, blogs, and opinions about why Facebook sucks.

I graduated from an Electronic Media program where I was surrounded by these digital serfs, and learned how to use lots of different pieces of media software. Final Cut Pro, Adobe Creative Suite, Pro Tools, the list goes on. If you have more than a passing acquaintance with these software suites, you probably have an opinion about which one works best.

I get them, I understand how to use them, and I know how powerful they can be. When I was starting out, though, I could never shake the feeling that they were "too much." If you're cutting a steak, you don't whip out a Swiss army knife. You use a steak knife, like a normal person.

I started podcasting in 2007, wanting to turn my internet radio show into a packaged, persistent product. This first podcast eventually turned into Stand Under the Don't Tree and Riddle Me This, a video game talk show with a bewildering name. Three years later, I started a second podcast, Those Damn Ross Kids, a NSFW comedy podcast that I do with my brother, Kris.

When you're a poor student (or even a poor graduate—feed me please) it's difficult to afford fancy software to fuel your hobbies. So, you use what works. To this day, I edit my shows in Garageband because it's free and simple. A friend of mine once criticized me for using "kiddie gloves," but my response remains: "It doesn't get in the way when I sit down to make things." I like a program that does one thing well. Every button and lever I don't use is just wasting my time.

The same goes for Switch, which simply does what I ask it to without putting up a fuss.

The end product of a podcast is always an MP3 file, but it goes through lots of different phases in its life cycle. The shows are recorded over Skype as high-sample rate stereo AIFF files. My voice is always on the right channel, while the incoming audio from Skype is on the left channel. I drop this file into Garageband to separate the tracks, and re-export them so that I'm able to do multitrack editing, making editing out overtalk a breeze.

The separated files are still in stereo, though, so I pop those back into Switch to squash them into mono AIFF files. These are easier to edit, and take up half as much space. I then put these files onto separate tracks in Garageband and go to town, making what we say clever and insightful.

When I'm done with that, I apply the Levelator to the AIFF. The Levelator's motto should be "Crummy thing go in, pretty thing come out." It doesn't work all the time, but it's better than spending an hour trying to configure a compressor.

The final step comes when I drop the finished file into Switch again, compressing it to a 96kbps mono MP3 file for distribution. This is the best compromise between sound quality and size. It's a quick download, and it doesn't waste all of that time I spent equalizing it to sound good. Switch made this easy to figure out. All I had to do was mess with the encoder options and re-convert until I got something good.

Voila, that's a podcast. Spank it on the bottom, FTP it, and let the world know that it's ready.

There have been other times in my professional and academic career where Switch has bailed me out... For example with how finicky Final Cut Pro is vis-รก-vis what kind of audio files it will play nice with.

The moral of the story is this: Even though the aforementioned $1000+ media suites can probably spit out the kinds of files you want, I don't need all of the excess functionality that comes with it. Switch just exists. It's a box on my desktop that takes one thing and makes it into another thing, without complaint.

I don't need a Jaws of Life to open my beer, thanks. Just let me make something and get on with my day. My job is to be funny in front of a microphone, not fiddle with software.
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