Contributing to the Database
Registered users can contribute new database listings, including information, product images and pdf files for useful items such as User Manuals. It is also possible to add or correct information about an existing database entry.
If you want to start a brand new entry then please follow these steps;
- Check carefully that the database entry you want to create does not already exist in the database.
- Log into Audio Gear using your user name and password.
- Under the ‘My Audio Gear’ menu, click either the Add Audio Gear Listing or Add MI Gear Listing
Select Add Audio Gear Listing to add a piece of audio equipment which is primarily used to support the recording, production and reproduction of music.
Select Add MI Gear Listing to add a Musical Instrument or MI accessory e.g. a guitar amp.
This will bring up the new listing entry screen which contains all the compulsory fields for a new database product listing, as follows;
- Manufacturer : this is the company which manufactured the item you wish to list.
Click Add New if the manufacturing company does not yet exist in the database. Click here for help on adding a new company to the database.
- Listing Categories : every item you wish to list must sit under one primary category and one secondary category so that it’s easier for all of us to search the database. Always select the primary category first and then you will be presented with the appropriate secondary categories. Here is an example of category use:
The famous Shure SM58 is a dynamic microphone, so it is listed under the main category ‘Microphones’ and the sub category ‘Dynamic Microphones’
- Model : This is the unique model number by which the item is known. This may or not be the same as the manufacturer’s part number. Have a look at these two examples which will help to explain:
Studer Revox manufactured an analogue tape machine with the general model name ‘B77’. After a number of years it introduced an improved MKII version. In our database we list these as two separate entries with the model numbers ‘B77 MK I’ and ‘B77 MK II’
Just to complicate matters, both MK I and MK II versions were available with a number of different options. We can list these different options using the Manufacturer’s Part Number (see ‘MPN’ below) and the Version description (see ‘Version’ below).
- Function : Every piece of audio hardware and software has a basic function so we describe that with this field. In the case of the Studer Revox B77 we describe it as a ‘Stereo Tape Recorder’. It is probably best to use the functional description from the manufacturer’s literature about the item.
- Main Image : Every database entry should have a minimum of one image of the item you are listing. Our preference is that you include a high quality image of the actual item you own but failing that it is okay to use an image from the manufacturer’s product page, BUT we have one simple rule. The image must be of the exact model you wish to list.
If the item is a piece of software, then use the manufacturer’s advertising image for the software.
The system automatically reduces the size of the image when uploaded to suit the database screen layout and to limit the image file size so we can make sensible use of the available storage space. For best quality, do not reduce the image size or resolution prior to uploading. The Audio Gear upload system will take care of that automatically.
- Description : This is the published description of the item you are listing. Where possible try to use the original description from the manufacturer’s web site or user manual. If that is lost in history, then it’s up to you to give an accurate description of the item from your own knowledge of using the item.
When you have entered all of the compulsory information, press the Save Draft Listing button.
The new Listing will now be presented in Listing Preview Edit form. You now have four options;
- Press Delete Listing if you do not want to proceed with the new entry and do not want to save the draft.
- Press Save Draft if you wish to return to the new entry at a later time for further editing.
- Press Publish Listing if you wish to submit the new database entry to the live Audio Gear database.
- Make additions and changes to the entry. Click on any field to edit.
Optional database fields;
- Additional Images : Very useful to show other views of the item but please don’t include hundreds of images and clog up the database. Three or four additional images is usually sufficient.
- Manufactured (Start Year) : The year when the item was first available for sale anywhere in the world.
- Manufactured (End Year) : The year when the item was removed from the manufacturer’s catalogue or website (not to be confused with when your local dealer stopped selling it, which may be different). If the item is still being manufactured then leave this field blank.
- Version : If you are listing a particular variant of an item and you want to be very specific about its specification, then you can added a short list of features which make this particular variant special. Again have a look at this entry for the Studer Revox B77 MK I Stereo Tape Machine. You will find a version with the following information:
High Speed 19/38cm/s
This is everything which makes up that unique variant of the model. If you are going into this level of detail then it’s worth making the effort to find out the manufacturer’s part number for that variant of the model. See below under ‘MPN’
- MPN : It’s only necessary to add the Manufacturer’s Part Number when it directly impacts on identifying a unique variant of a model and when it is listed by the manufacturer in their published information. For the Studer Revox B77 MK I example above, the MPN is ‘CS14108’
- Specification : the original technical specification for the item from the manufacturer’s website or from the User Manual. Make sure it is the correct specification for the item you are listing.
- User Review : you can write your own review of the product here.
- Magazine Reviews : you can add published reviews about the item you are listing. In general we would prefer that you only list professional reviews in recognised publications. For each review you need to add:
- The review date
- The title of the magazine
- A hyperlink to the review on-line.
If the review exists only as a pdf or image file, then you have the option to upload these.
- Resources : Typically used to upload copies of the User Manual or Service Manual in PDF format but you can also link to other useful web based information about the product or upload images or advertisements for vintage gear.
- History : a mini ‘wiki’ to tell the history of the item: maybe who designed it, any known manufacturing issues and anything else which will help make its unique place in history!
Q1 What kind of audio equipment can I list on the Audio Gear database?
A1 Any piece of hardware or software which is used in recording, broadcast, live performance and reproduction.
Q2 Can I include musical instruments?
A2 Yes you can. Please use the ‘Add MI Gear Listing’ form for this.
Q3 Can I only list ‘professional’ gear?
A3 It is fine to list all audio equipment whether it be considered professional or for home use, e.g. home hi-fi, cassette recorders, mini-disk recorders are all fine to list.
Q4 What happens if I publish a new listing accidentally and want to remove it?
A4 Just e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org explain what happened, and we’ll take care of it. This might happen if you realise that you have accidentally published a listing which is identical to an already published listing.