Tech Support

We are sorry if you have a problem and will do our absolute best to resolve it as fast as possible.
Check the FAQ below, and if you do not find an answer: Please EMAIL ME

Be aware we are based in New Zealand, so check the clock below for our local time and that will give you an indicator of how soon you will get a response to a support issue. Other than when recording in very remote locations with no cell signal, we aim to be very responsive… so if you email me with a problem, stay nearby as I will usually respond immediately.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What the hell is a RAR file?

RAR is a compression format – like ZIP files but more efficient, so your downloads are smaller.
If you’ve never used a RAR file before, you may need to install a free RAR decompressor.
For OSX: Unarchiver is a free, small, and easy to use program
For PC: WinZIP is one easy option.

2. My download keeps stopping

Firstly, sorry for the hassle – it should be fast & easy and 99.9% of the time it is! The files are stored on Amazon S3 which is 100% reliable and I can download most libraries in under an hour (from NZ which is as far from the servers as is possible) but I am on very fast, reliable fibre connection.

A couple of times (out of many thousands) people have been unable to reliably download from Amazon S3, and I can only presume it is some kind of filter or speed throttling by their ISP… which I can’t fix, but a few things to try at your end:

2a. Don’t use wifi, use direct ethernet connection to modem
If any noise occurs on wifi channel eg garage door remote etc, wifi will change frequency to try & reduce the noise… which disconnects long downloads.

2b. Try a different browser and/or computer
This shouldn’t make any difference but we have had at least one occurrence where Safaris web browser cache was corrupted and it made downloads very slow until they eventually stopped. So if you change browsers and performance is much better, consider going to your original browser preferences and reset the cache.

2c. Try a different ISP
Unfortunately some ISPs throttle large downloads, which quite frankly is a pretty shit business model. The only way to eliminate that as a possibility is to try downloading by accessing the internet from a different ISP. Also note if you can access internet via a fibre or cable connection it may be more reliable than ADSL…

2d. If all of this fails, please email TIM
Out of many many thousands of successful downloads, a couple of times the only solution has been to download directly from my Google drive. So as a last resort I can manually send you a direct link to the files.

3. My download is corrupted or maybe missing files?

There are two quick ways to check if your download is complete. First is to compare the size of your downloaded file with the original file via the download link. If necessary start a new download and note the size of the original file, and compare it with your completed download. They should be very similar in size, if not identical (a small amount of variation occurs due to the sector size of your hard drive versus that of the server) If there is a significant difference, please re-download the file.

If you have decompressed the files and suspect you are missing something, please open the metadata file included in archive A of each library (in the INFO folder) – open either the Excel spreadsheet or the text file – they contain a file list with filenames that will exactly match your downloads.
A first quick check is the number of files, and if there is something missing a second check is to skip through comparing your download with the file list. If necessary redownload the archive.

4. Will you sell my sounds at HISSandaROAR?

No, sorry. We do not sell other peoples sounds, for a whole bunch of reasons. We own 100% of the IP on HISSandaROAR and that is exactly how we prefer to operate.

My best advice depends on whether you are in for the short term or long term.

If short term: there are many websites that will resell your sounds for you but just be aware what such a scenario costs you ie apart from paying a commission, you also do not get access to your most valuable business asset & that is the customers email address & permission to join your mail list. This is critical for long term business of any kind, so your short term shortcut will cost you in the long term. Much like having a Youtube channel, you are basically renting your relationship, and have no control over your data. And if/when you set up your own site, you will be back to the start with building your customer database.
But if you do go down this road I would advise you to put your sounds on every legit sound library website you can find. That way you will at least get real data as to which sites do promote and actually sell your sounds. Fish where the fish are.

If you are in it for the long term, I advise you to set up your own eccomerce website. You will have to do a lot more research, but so did everyone else. Long term it is the only way – there are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going!

5. Why do you use multiple microphones?

When recording, the first challenge can often be accessing the location or prop. Once that is achieved we figure it is wise to make the best of the opportunity by recording multiple perspectives at once.
Depending on the location some people prefer to record ambiences with spaced omni mics, others prefer a tight stereo image… Our goal is to provide you options, simply because we do not know what context you will use the sounds and neither do you: on one project spaced omni perspective might suit best, on another a tight stereo image might be better, and on another a mono point source might be the best approach.

While some people prefer to record with single point ‘surround’ microphones we do not believe it often the best use of record channels. In nature many ambiences do not occur in an ‘ideal’ state, for example you might presume cave ambiences are ideal for 5.0 capture but if you actually spend much time underground listening, you soon realise the best mic configuration is completely dependent on where the sounds are originating from, and the space they exist in…. Rarely does that match a standard 5.0 or ambisonics configuration, and discrete microphones provide far more options for careful application. After all the aim is to capture sounds in a form that allows them to be manipulated and used in as wide a range of situations and contexts as possible.

A guide to our microphone choices:

– MKH8040 ORTF
a matched stereo pair of Sennheiser MKH8040 mics, very low self noise, tight stereo image
and wide frequency response 30Hz – 50kHz
– MKH8050
mono Sennheiser MKH8050 mic, often used for a detail or as a spot mic, very low self noise
and wide frequency response 30Hz – 50kHz
– MKH8020 omni
a pair of Sennheiser MKH8020 mics, used as spaced omni – very low self noise
and very wide frequency response 10Hz-60kHz!
– DPA 4060 omni
Miniature DPA 4060 omni mics, fairly low self noise and good frequency response 20 Hz – 20 kHz,
amazing for such a tiny mic… mainly used as spaced omni
– MKH70
a pair of Sennheiser MKH70 long shotgun mics -very directional with frequency response 50Hz – 20kHz,
check the PDF spec sheet for polar response, these mics are great at side rejection thereby providing an
almost pointillistic perspective and great for targeting discrete details.
– Sanken CSS5
The Sanken CSS5 was my first pro mic – a single point stereo mic, mine got ruined by a studio flood…
used insurance to help replace with the 8040 pair. Retired now, but appears in some of the early HISSandaROAR libraries.
– Contact Mics
Barcus Berry Planar Wave – mic + preamp x2
Trance Audio Inducer – stereo/2 mics + preamp
Leafcutter John contact mics x 4

6. Let me know if there is anything else I can add here?

Email TIM