How to celebrate Chinese New Year in a technical way?

With the Chinese New Year (CNY) around the corner, many of us are preparing ourselves for this festive season. To reap the most out of this coming lunar new year, here are some recommendations for you to get yourself ready for CNY, the technical way.

Too lazy to decorate your house?

Like many of us who are in the event industry, the CNY period would have already started weeks before the actual festivity. With a magnitude of CNY related events to be involved in, how does one find the time to source and decorate your house to welcome the God of Fortune? Here’s an idea for you!

Instead of buying physical decorations, why not invest in a few state of the art projectors or TV panels? With these equipment in your arsenal, you are ready for any occasion, not just CNY alone. Mount / place these babies at desired location and simply project your decorations onto the wall. How savvy is that? You might even save some extra time in keeping the “decorations”, or it can be reused for other occasions when necessary!

Special thanks to Samantha Ngau

Feeling the needs to be the loudest with your festive greeting?

It’s a common tradition to exchange auspicious greetings when you visit your friends or relatives during CNY (e.g. 恭喜发财, gong xi fa cai). However, do you know that there’s an “urban myth” where the value of the respective red packet received after every greeting will increase with respect to loudness? Here’s how to tackle this problem to get the maximum value!

Invest in a set of public announcement (PA) system and if you’re feeling rich why not buy one with a built-in battery? Hook the system up with a microphone and amplify away! To show more sincerity to your loved ones, you can always showcase your skills by coupling the vocal with some effects (e.g. a long delay of 200ms to get a dynamic greeting!). Good luck in pursuing the road to riches ☺.

Special Thanks to Samantha Ngau

Trying hard to impress others?

In Chinese culture, one of the most common ways to leave an impression on someone is to flaunt that you have a bright future waiting for you. A bright future refers to a possible future with many good prospects waiting. If you are having doubts about your capabilities, why not give them a literal bright future to experience?

To aid yourself with the convenience of setting up, prepare some blinding LED pars with built in battery. Utilise your friends and family to get them to set up and focus the light in a blinding manner for you. Pro tip, make sure you leave the centre spot empty so that you can stand in position for the most impact. Have a difficult in-laws to please? Why not pair this set up with some additional industrial fans placed behind you to blow them away literally?

Special Thanks to Samantha Ngau

I hope by now you would have realised that this is a special post for this festive season. The suggestions above are obviously written for a good laugh, so please take it with a pinch of salt. Here at YWFUProject wishing you a Happy Lunar New Year.

YWFU

 

Daiso items that are surprisingly useful for audio engineers

Ah Daiso... a marketplace that furnished itself with a multitude of products—from stationery to dining ware to even handy tools. This powerhouse store has packed its arsenals to ensure that there is something for everybody to purchase in store. On top of the array of products it sells, the most attractive reason for any consumer to spend their time in the store would be the $2 SGD price tag on every single item.

Daiso Storefront @ Citysquare mall, Credits Daiso

In this post, we will take a look at some of the items bought from Daiso that is surprisingly useful for audio engineers or technical production crews. The products featured here are not sponsored and I have been using it for a respectable amount of time (min. 6 months). Some have even survived the years on the road, working on the countless number of shows we have participated in. These items were all bought from Daiso and it was not necessarily meant for production work but with a little bit of creativity, they turn out to be exceptionally applicable.

Daiso Modular Doorstopper

One might ask what else can a doorstopper do? In my own experience, the Daiso modular doorstopper is very well designed to be integrated with front fields speakers. This is more aesthetically pleasing than using gaff or electrical (insulation) tapes to alleviate the speaker. The modular doorstopper provides more "control" in the tilt degree of your speaker. Unlike any generic doorstopper, the modular characteristic allows the user to "customise" the height of the doorstopper to suit the speaker dispersion towards the designated area. The rubberised locking mechanism on the doorstopper has proven itself to be rugged enough for heavy weight load (the max. I have tried was 29kg). The modular doorstopper comes in a pack of 2 and can be found in the home section of the store.

Daiso Modular Doorstopper (Grey)

Modular Doorstopper in action

Daiso white label stickers

Although this is a very common item that many of my friends / colleagues use, I still get asked a lot about where I get them. Before I found out that Daiso sells this label sticker in smaller quantities, I used to purchase something similar from Alibaba with a minimum order of 2000 sheets (35 stickers per sheet) and that will probably last you years to come (please don't judge me). The good thing about this is that these labelling stickers come in different sizes and you can use it for anything you desire. Depending on the sizes, the stickers will come in a pack of 800 pieces (small size) to 350 pieces (medium size) to 25 pieces (large size) and can be found in the stationery section of the store.

Daiso Label Sticker (Tack Seal)

Labelling mic, clean and neat.

Labelling stick at inconspicuous area

Daiso Magnetic Sheet (A4 size)

Not every live mixing console comes with an onboard LCD screen to display information such as channel names. Labelling the console with electrical tapes was a common task for any engineer to do. However, that might stain the console with sticky residue if the tapes were left for too long. In some cases, such practices were not practical, for example, in a festival situation where numerous bands are performing. This would require different sets of labelling to accommodate the changes in the audio patch. Using magnetic strips as a labelling medium can be a feasible way to counter this problem. This allows the labelling to be prepared on the strips. All you need to do is switch the magnetic strips as required. To make things even simpler, different bands can be colour coded to a set of magnetic strips. Daiso sells these magnetic sheets in different sizes and I have managed to purchase the A4 size pack (the most economical in my opinion). These magnetic sheets can be found in the stationery section of the store.

Daiso Magentic Sheet of various sizes

Using the magnetic strips for console labelling

Example of an onboard LCD display

Daiso Filter Bag for tea

For this product, it does not work alone with just the filter bag purchased from Daiso. The filter bags are to be filled with silica gels (not bought from Daiso) and be used anywhere to generally control the humidity in the environment. Humidity is one of the worst enemies for any microphone windshield / pop filter as they tend to disintegrate easily after long exposure in a high humidity space. As a general practice, I would couple these silica bags in pouches, cases or bags that store porous materials. Although Daiso does sell pre-packaged silica gel (laundry section), I would favour filling the filter bags myself as that is a cheaper option (but time-consuming). These filter bags can be found in the dining section of the store.

Daiso Tea Filter Bag with Silica Gel

Left: Pre-packed silica case, Right: "Selfmade" silica pouch

The great (maybe addictive) thing about Daiso is that the products are cheaply priced and does not cost you much to start experimenting around for other purposes. These items are some of the past purchases that I find extremely useful and would not mind buying again. If you have a specific Daiso item that is useful in this field of work, why not share it with the community in the comment section?

YWFU

Hello everyone

One of my goals in 2016 is to create a website that would help me archive the past projects that I was involved in (e.g. music production projects) and hopefully share it with like-minded people who can appreciate them and at the same time, provide comments or criticism. I am also hoping that through this website, I will explore topics that are related to engineering, technology and the music that I loved.

I am based in Singapore and have been working in the technical production industry for quite a while. There are numerous perks in working in this industry, such as the opportunities to be exposed to new topics while working in conferences / exhibitions. Another example, which is also one that is often brought up by friends and family, is the access to free concerts or festivals! Despite all the examples mentioned above, there are also many “drawbacks” that would cause one to reconsider and sometimes leave the industry. I hope to cover this in one of the future post.

This website is still in the developing stage, hence, the structure of the website might sometimes change. Thank you for your time. 

YWFU