ChaoticCanineCulture [CK9C] is the nom-de-plume of our friend Jorge, who's been making music, animation, VR content, videos and other creative endeavors for various uses for over a decade.
I’ve been streaming various types of content such as gaming and music production since 2010 on all sorts of platforms back before YouTube and Twitch streaming were a thing. Through the past 11 years of streaming, I have been able to experiment a lot with my setups and streaming style. Nowadays I prefer Twitch as my favorite streaming platform due to the audience interactivity that the platform offers. For years I built up my audio, camera and lighting gear collection for streaming but as of this year I have started to combine virtual reality streaming with face cam streaming in a mixed reality setup. It has really been an exciting adventure to try a whole new medium of interacting with my audience through mixed reality. Some days I just prefer to talk and chill with my viewers, answering various questions and chatting about all sorts of topics, while other days I work in the studio and let my audience participate in the creation of my songs as well as my mixes. Having people to talk with while I work in the recording studio has also made my creative process a lot more dynamic than sitting alone in the studio and I absolutely enjoy the input that the audience offers as well as answering the technical questions they might ask.
Working with both a team of animators and cinematographers, every video is always a new adventure. The teams and I pour everything we have into the creation of each video and thus they can certainly take some time to make. I would have to say my favorite animated video I’ve done is “Do You Even?” - an original song and video dedicated to the horror game “Five Nights at Freddy’s.” It was the first major 3D animated music video that my team and I did and I adore how it turned out. The visuals fit the story of the song so well, even after a few years it still holds a special place in my favorite projects. As for my live action videos, I have been working on a rotoscoping project that combines 2D hand-drawn animation interacting with live action footage for my next song called “Incomplete” - an original song dedicated to the horror game “Bendy and the Ink Machine.” It is combining a lot of firsts for both the animation and cinematography team and myself and we have been having a blast experimenting with both elements! I can’t wait to finish it and share it with my audience!
I have three spaces that I stream in; two are a mix of virtual reality and gaming spaces while the other is a music studio with a mixed reality streaming setup. All of the setups use a two-computer layout for both redundancy as well as easing the CPU/GPU load that streaming virtual reality and mixed reality puts on the PC systems. My Apple computers run Logic Pro as well as all audio inputs such as microphones, synthesizers and virtual instruments, while the PC’s run the VR and facial capture software called VSeeFace. While in VR, I use a full body system consisting of three sensors, four base stations and my Valve Knuckles controllers and headset but I would like to use a more accurate live tracking suit system one day soon that is more industry standard.
I use multiple audio interfaces such as the multiple SSL 2+, DigiGrid iOS and Allen&Heath Qu-16 to bridge the computers’ audio together and avoid latency. In the music studio, the audio is run from a Mac Pro tower, aka the cheesegrater as I like to call it. It's a beast of a tower that has been able to effortlessly run every plugin that I throw at it for heavy projects that can range up to 200+ tracks. In the recording studio, The Digigrid iOS outputs the audio from the Mac Pro to a SSL 2+ interface that is plugged into a PC Laptop that runs the stream as well as the Facial Capture software for a mixed reality setup. The VR music studios also use macs to run the audio, one utilizes an iMac and the other running on a new M1 Max Macbook Pro. Each space uses two audio interfaces; one setup using two SSL 2+ to link the PC and Macbook Pro and the other using the Allen&Heath Qu-16 to bridge the iMac and PC. Working in multiple studios requires all of my projects to update through both the cloud and local NAS storage to keep all the systems always up to date when moving between the studios. Whether I'm performing live or writing and mixing a new song, I'm always on one of these three Apple systems. While streaming and performing in virtual reality, I prefer to use the Audeze LCD-i4 IEM’s to monitor all audio from both computers, the Apple and PC in either space, summed together via a Sennheiser wireless headphone system. I absolutely love the portability and the spatial audio clarity that the LCD-i4 brings to the table when in virtual reality and with the size of them, they fit perfectly between my Valve Index headphones and my ears. While in desktop streaming in the music studio, I prefer to use the LCD-MX4 as my main headphones for the accuracy they have while I produce and mix music on stream.
I’m always on the hunt for the next piece of audio and video gear to add to the setups. For audio, I have my eyes on the Audeze LCD-5 as a reference pair for mixing in the studio and a pair of 64 Audio IEM’s for performing in-person concerts with. Since my introduction into working with spatial audio in VR and Apple Music, I’m really eager to continue delving further into spatial audio mixing and learning to mix with Dolby Atmos software. As far as video gear, I’m dreaming of the day my cinematography team and I use RED cameras for the sheer color accuracy those monstrous cameras bring to the projects. The animation teams and I are also looking to use more mixed reality gear for music videos and using full-body and facial capture rigs for live animation capture. With production always evolving here at the CK9C space, there is always new gear on the horizon to expand our capabilities!
Since starting to use Audeze headphones, specifically the LCD-i4 and LCD-MX4, my workflow in both my music making and mixing as well as virtual streaming have changed immensely. Before I found both pairs, I was using standard mixing tools like studio monitors and the ever-popular closed back Audio Technica M50x headphones. While those tools served me wonderfully throughout my years of producing music and streaming, my rooms were always lacking in professional acoustical treatment and my sound staging was not as accurate as I would have liked. Using the LCD-MX4, my sense of what a true open-back soundstage is has profoundly changed and I have been using them as a daily driver ever since. My audio team, who I met while working at Atlantic Records as a vocal engineer intern, has also been enjoying using the LCD-MX4 as a reference when they are in the studio with me since we all have been using the M50x for so many years and not experiencing what a true high quality open-back soundstage is like. For VR performances, I had been using a pair of closed back Sennheiser IE 40 Pro to monitor my streams until I found the LCD-i4. The difference between them has been night and day, with my ears not only feeling much less fatigue after prolonged periods with the LCD-i4 but also being able to hear the much larger and more accurate soundstage that the open back design of the i4’s have. They have become my favorite audio listening devices for both virtual reality as well as referencing my mixes when moving about the studio spaces.
As any streamer can relate, my biggest pet peeve is when a system does not want to work or breaks down during the stream. At first I would get really nervous trying to troubleshoot and repair the audio, video and streaming software while everyone is watching on stream but after so many years of doing it, I’ve gotten a lot better with my preparedness and my audience seems to enjoy a bit of chaos every now and then when things break and they watch me scramble to fix it.
My favorite color is definitely the best color in the world, cyan!
Oh, I'm sorry I only know the airspeed velocity of an unladen European swallow. Sorry about that.