hoping to record soon, little help!

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by kirbywrx, Oct 23, 2003.

  1. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    After i pay off my bass, then get a car, im going to start putting my own little studio together. Ive got a rought idea of what i need, bt a little help would be more than helpful.

    Im not going to be recording an orchestra or anything, it would just be the band (no more than 6 pieces) all playing at the same time. mabye go back and do the vocals or another instrument afterwards. No more than a 16 track. Im looking at mackie or behringer.

    Id need a new computer, so what kind of hardware and software would i need for that? Id more than likley use Cubase SX to record. Would i need pre-amps ect, or would they come in the mixer? Monitors aswell, and a whole lot of leads.

    I think im in way over my head, i know what i need basically, but what else do i need to get a decent recording? Any help at all is greatly appreciated
  2. Oysterman


    Mar 30, 2000
    Read here:


    Depending on how often/much you are going to record, I'd say do the drums in a "real" studio, and do the rest at home. Drums don't only require quite a bit of gear and patience, but also facilities. If you don't have a good room to put them in, chances are likely that it will sound yuck. Low ceilings and concrete floors & walls are perhaps your worst enemy.

    But if you're going to record every month or so, and can provide with a spacey, acoustically treated room, it could be worth the investment.

    Use Cubase SX if you like it (and can get it to work), for after all, software is not half as important as MICROPHONES and how you PLACE them. That does more for the final result than you probably can imagine. I'd dare to say that software is actually the LEAST important thing in a home studio (but is probably given the most attention!).
  3. Droog


    Aug 14, 2003
    Exactly. Concentrate on good Pre's, mics and placement. If it sounds good going into the compy then it will sound good coming out. Definately find a good space for your drums, everything else (well almost) you can either DI or close mic. Bugger Behringer, please don't be one of those guys. Save your money and get something that sounds nice, well at least passable. Have fun.
  4. Oysterman


    Mar 30, 2000
    And also remember, if you're going to record drums, you'd need as many inputs on the sound card as you're having microphones for the kit. I know there are affordable 4- & 8-channel solutions, but any more than that gets kinda expensive I believe.

    You do NOT want to mix the drums BEFORE recording them (i.e. feeding a stereo out from a mixer to the sound card). Any mistake done at that stage will be virtually impossible to remedy later!
  5. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    OK heres what i plan to do. Ill record everything at the same time, and if anyone wants to go back and do their track again, they can. (i say this so you can possibly advise me about what i can do with headphones, ect. Id want headphones as monitors BTW if possbile)

    Mackie 1402-VLZ PRO compact Mixer
    Spirit Absolute Zero Pro Monitors
    A Multicore
    Whatever mics & headphones i can get my hands on
    Cubase SX
    Appropriate leads
    And computer setup of some sort

    Is this enough to get me buy? With that sort of mackie mixer do i need to buy a preamp to record, or are they already in there? It really doesnt seem alot, do i have everything i need, or am i missing something completly? What else do i have to add on to get a good sound?

    Thanks guys, im really out in the open, and i have no idea what im looking at :D thanks again
  6. Oysterman


    Mar 30, 2000
    To mic a drum kit, you'll need at least 4 microphones for a decent result - one for kick drum, one for snare & two overheads. Depending on the drummer and what parts the kit consists of, there is a risk that the toms will get lost in the mix with this setup, since they aren't mic'ed individually. If you mic the toms too, you may or may not have enough channels left for bass & guitar (two or three toms? one or two guitars?).

    Let's just say all you need is 8 inputs:

    1 Bass drum
    2 Snare drum
    3 Overhead left
    4 Overhead right
    5 Tom 1 (or another instrument)
    6 Tom 2 (or another instrument)
    7 Guitar
    8 Bass

    Then you need microphones for everything except bass, and preferably a dedicated vocal mic as well. There are plenty of affordable large diaphragm condensator mics nowadays (Studio Projects, ADK, ...), so get one if vocals are of any importance.

    So that's 7 or 8 microphones, with stands and cables. This could cost you anywhere from, say, US $500 (if you find deals on used gear or just borrow stuff) and up.

    Further, you'll need an audio interface (Such as the ST Audio C-Port, Aardvark Q10 or Delta 1010) to allow your computer to record these eight tracks simultaneously. If the interface doesn't provide with preamplification (e.g. the Q10 does, the 1010 doesn't), you will need that as well. A cheap mixer with 8 preamps could suffice. The 1402 only has 6, though? The C-port has 2 half-assed (but working) ones, you could pair it with the Mackie to have 8 preamps.
    This would cost you from $300 and up? I have no idea what that 1402 goes for.

    Decent headphones for tracking, decent monitors (the Absolute Zeroes are OK) for mixing. $400?
    Mixing with headphones only isn't recommended, but if you know what you're doing it can give decent results. Though as a beginner, you don't really know what you're doing. I know from experience. ;)

    This would add up to $1200 minimum, and that's taking into account that you get good to great deals on used gear for just about everything. Seeing as you don't live in the USA, your market is smaller, and consequently prices are higher. Perhaps you should add $200-$300 to the minimum cost? (This all in USD, mind you.)

    You need more inputs? Buy another audio interface, and keep your fingers crossed two of them will work together. You never know with computers...

    As has been said before, a good-sounding room for the drums. If the room doesn't sound good, try to make it not sound at all (i.e. dampen the reflections as much as you can). Then all you need is knowledge. And experience. And patience.

    What's a "Multicore", BTW?
  7. Oysterman


    Mar 30, 2000
    I just remembered that I've heard a home recordist do drums with only one kick drum mic and one omnidirectional overhead (the cheap Behringer ECM8000). It sounded like drums, all right.
  8. Droog


    Aug 14, 2003
    What kind of music are you doing? If it fits a lo-fi approach might work well. Kick, Snare and an Omni at about head hight four feet in front of kick. Limit the shi* out of the omni blend in the kick and snare and you got yourself a hip sound. Thats 3 tracks. Leaves you 5 for bass, guitar and vocals and b/u vocals. Cheers.
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