As you probably know the first book was a huge success, receiving a number of awards and also masses of critical acclaim most of which you can read right here on Amazon. I'm not going to repeat that praise here because you can look it up yourself instead I'm going to concentrate on the differences for those of us who already own the first.
Having already have most of the pages fall out through the bad binding on the first book I decided to take the leap and purchase this one instead.
The good news is the binding has been considerably improved and after owning it and flicking through it for a couple of months it seems to be holding itself together very well.
Some of the chapters have been changed around and there's a new chapter on recording instruments alongside two new chapters in the genre section; drum n bass and UK Garage. While UK Garage is old I do appreciate the authors honesty in his approach. He admits he doesn't like bassline and since this genre developed from UK Garage, he approaches that instead and leaves tips in the text to develop into bassline.
This is where perhaps the biggest different between the editions lie. All the demo software and the crappy mixes that haunted the CD of the first edition have been replaced with a number of very professional sounding mixes. After a few minutes of playing, the author comes in with narrative on each of these tracks explaining the tools and methods he used to produce them. I found this particularly interesting, being able to relate the information in the book with the audio on the CD.
The few mistakes from first edition (particularly the music theory chapters) have been ironed out but in their place are a couple of new minor mistakes such as date and year mix-ups. These are minor issues and certainly don't detract from the books wealth of information.
I've come across the odd naysayers on forums, and there's one right here on Amazon, but they are few and far between and you need to ignore that noise. On visiting the authors page, some of the tracks from the CD have been released commercially so while the music itself may not suit everyone's tastes, especially those who consider themselves "underground", the theory contained within the pages proves itself to be sound advice.
The first edition was my go to reference book and this has replaced it (mostly due to bad binding on the first). It quite simply is the best book available for anyone looking to produce dance music.
I've given this book five stars because if you don't own either edition and you're looking to make the type of music you typically hear from the Ministry of Sound you need this book. But if you already own the first edition and its still in one piece you may need to consider whether the few new chapters and the narrative on the CD are worth it and on that score I'd give it 4 stars.