Calling The Brightest New Stars In Canada

Do the stars really shine brighter in the north? We think so. That’s why OurStage and Intel are teaming up for the Intel® “Canadian Superstars” Competition. From now until August 25, we’re offering Canadian artists the chance to win some amazing prize packages featuring gear from Fender, Avid, Shure, and more! Canadian artists can enter their songs into one of seven channels, including country, electronic, pop, rock, singer-songwriter, urban, and Francophone (for entries exclusively in French). The OurStage community will then judge the best undiscovered Canadian talent and pick out the brightest stars from the bunch. Don’t get left in the dark! Enter your music now and get your shine on.

Intel Seeks Superstar Canadian Talent

Intel’s “Superstars” Competition is back, only this time they’re seeking the best talent Canada has to offer.

From now until August 25, you can submit your best material to the Intel® Canadian Superstars Competition through one of seven channels, including electronic, singer-songwriter, urban, pop, rock, country and Francophone (exclusively for tracks sung in French). Our community of music fans will listen and rate your track against other channel submissions until one song rises to the top of the heap and an artist is crowned the victor. If selected, you will receive a ton of awesome prizes including gear from AvidCasioMonster®Shure, and Fender®, not to mention Best Buy gift cards.

So what are you waiting for? Click here and let the games begin.

Canadian Artists – Win The Ultimate Prize Package From Intel

The “Superstars” Competition is back. Only this time, we’re turning the spotlight on our northern neighbors. We’ve got seven channels for all you aspiring Canadian superstars, including Electronic, Singer-Songwriter, Urban, Pop, Rock, Country and Franí§ais (exclusively for tracks sung in French). Enter your track in one of these Intel® “Canadian Superstars” Competition channels by August 25, and you could win awesome prizes including gear from Avid, Casio, Monster®, Shure, and Fender®, not to mention Best Buy gift cards. Let the games begin.


Tune Up: Wireless Systems

Stage presence while performing is almost as important as the music that you’re playing. Crafting a live show involves movement, passion and even choreography. It can be tough to maneuver when plugged into an amplifier or clutching a microphone with a bulky cable attached. So, this week we thought we’d highlight a couple of wireless systems designed by Shure® to help you move without restriction on stage.

Shure® PGX14

” automatic frequency selection

” 90 possible frequencies within 18 MHz band

” XLR and ¼” outputs

” automatic transmitter setup

” 10dB pad on transmitter

This is a great example of an instrument wireless system made by Shure®. This one, in particular, has a lot of versatility, because it has a wide range of frequencies within which to operate wirelessly. This is important because of the way a wireless system works: you can use a system that operates at a certain frequency, but if you are simultaneously using another one that works at the same frequency, they will interfere with each other. Because the PGX14 has 90 possible channels within its bandwidth, you would theoretically need 90 other systems operating at all possible frequencies in order to prevent it from working. Beyond that, this particular model has ¼” and XLR outputs and a large range (allowing you to perform further away from the receiver); it’s also quite rugged. This is a fabulous system for your guitar.

Shure® PGX24

The specs on this system are pretty much the same as those of the PGX14. The difference here is the fact that within the package is a wireless microphone. The microphone is comparable to the PG58 wired microphone and is very reliable for live performance. This model offers 8 hours of battery life and also operates in the 18MHz range. The benefit, again, of the 90 selectable frequencies allows you to operate this system and the guitar system simultaneously without interference.

Overall, these models are affordable, rugged and reliable. Shure® offers a huge line of wireless systems, with many styles of receivers, transmitters and microphones. We recommend you start here though, as these models are middle-of-the-road for most musicians and live performers.

Tune Up: Shure KSM44A And KSM42 Condenser Microphones

I’ve covered a lot of studio tips and equipment reviews in this column over the past few weeks. However, when a company I know and trust comes out with a new gadget, I always tend to obsess over it. Such is the case this week. Just a month or two ago, Shure came out with some new great, professional-level studio microphones. The KSM series added two new members to its family: The KSM42 and the KSM44A.

While, companies come out with new gear all the time and it’s sometimes tough to fight through the noise, I find these microphones particularly interesting. I’ve used many of the KSM models throughout my years of vocal recording and I’ve had some great results. Sure, there were plenty of applications where I didn’t think the KSM’s fit, but the new additions introduce some very enticing specs. A quick visit to the Shure Website will give you point-by-point information on the new features on these mics. Here are the highlights:


-Multiple polar patterns: cardioid, omnidirectional and bidirectional

-Gold plated connectors and 24-karat gold diaphragm

-Low-frequency filter (can be altered to customize what is cancelled)

-Pop filtering integrated into metal grille

For me, this mic stands out the most because of the construction and pop-filter technology.  Most impressive, though, is the ability to change the polar pattern to suit whatever recording application you need (standard vocal, acoustic sessions, etc.).


-Polar pattern with a large sweet spot

-Pop-filter technology in the grille (as well as an including, small pop filter on shock mount)

-Internal shock mount on the actual chassis

While this model doesn’t have the ability to change polar patterns, it does offer a cardioid pattern with a very large sweet spot (making mic positioning easier and the ability to have sound sources slightly off-center). The other interesting fact is the pop filter/shock mount technology contained within the actual microphone, giving added breath/transport noise prevention beyond external shock mounts and pop filters.

These mics are quite new so there is not much in the way of active feature reviews. But, I can say that the KSM series is very reliable (having used them in both studio and live settings). So, the standard specs of KSM’s hold true for these new mic’s in addition to the new features mentioned. While they might be out of the price-range for many home studios, their features are well worth the price if you’re looking to purchase new studio mics.