How to record good quality sound with a low-budget?

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by r6mile, Mar 5, 2006.

  1. I need to record a song with my band, but we don't want to spend much money (we don't have any) so I thought about this solution: we can use the sound input on a computer, and record each one of us separately (even the vocalist). For the drums, we can do the same thing but using a microphone. Then, with Audacity we can put everything together. What do you think about this solution? Do you have any other that doesn't involve spending a lot of money?
  2. the sound wont be great quality but it will work, you might just end up with a nice lo fi sound... D.I.Y... cool!
  3. Josh Ryan

    Josh Ryan - that dog won't hunt, Monsignor. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2001
    I think you would be better off trying to borrow a mixer and mics from someone and recording everyone at once.
  4. Juniorkimbrough


    Mar 22, 2005
    Mississippi / Memphis, TN
    Endorsing Artist: Lakland Basses
  5. The biggest problem you are going to have is syncing everyone together. If you record each person individually, then you're going to end up with someone being off beat, or late, or whatever.

    Get a good quality omni-directional mic, and record everyone all at once. That way you can have a play back that everyone can listen too as they play, so you won't have that off-beat problem. You're only problem will be recording over and over again, which can make you pretty tired of a song.:D

    Rock on
  6. jamesblue

    jamesblue Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2005
    Central Maryland
    Get a good quality omni-directional mic, and record everyone all at once.

    Great advice.

    I'd spend $200 bones and get something like (you'll need someones computer/doesn't have to be
    a fast/new one but it helps with mixing):

    PreSonus Inspire 1394 (fireWire) 24/96 bit rates
    Edirol UA25 USB interface
    Line6 (the 2 mic interface) 24/44 bit rate

    Each of the above come with software, 2 XLR/Insturment
    inputs, out puts to speakers or HeadPones.

    It's good to have two inputs do do stereo.

    By recording your band together (try a few takes and pick the best) and use that as a scratch track to follow when recording the other tracks.

    With two decent mics you'll get a good recording.
  7. Thank you very much for your answers. The problem is that we are just teenagers and we don't want to spend any money, so that's what we are going to have to do. What we were planning to do was to record the chords and the voice and the same time (using the sound input AND the mic input), and then record the rest of the instruments using the sound input BUT playing along with the rest of the recordings at the same time, so no one gets confused. I bought the jack-minijack adapter, and the minijack-minijack cable. I plugged the adapter into the headphone output of my bass amp, and the cable into the input of the sound card (it's the motherboard's sound card). I used HDD Ogg (I will download Audacity the moment I get home) to record what I played on my bass. When I heard it, I could hear a pretty loud buzz, and the low notes weren't very clear. I think it's the sound card, because it's the crappy motherboard sound card of a very old (it's got a P3 450 in it) computer, so I was thinking of buying a new one. Does anyone know a good STEREO sound card (I don't want any surround cards, I only need stereo) that's cheap and good?
  8. I bought yesterday a new 4.1 sound card for 10 $. It has 2 speaker outputs (front AND rear), a mic input and a sound input. It's this one: Z-cyber Nightingale Value. I think it's pretty good for what I have to do right now. The quality is WAY better than what I got with the motherboard sound card and it works perfectly with Audacity. I just have one two questions:
    - When I select stero recording on Audacity, I only get sound on the left channel. Is that normal (my bass is passive, and it's connected to the computer sound input through the headphone output of my practice amp)?
    - Would it be possible to record an instrument through the sound input and at the same time a microphone through the mic input getting the bass and the voice on separate tracks, or would I get it on the same track?
  9. ehque


    Jan 8, 2006
    basses are naturally mono, so you'll only have a left channel, even in stereo mode. if you want it in stereo, record first, then duplicate the track, panning one left and the other right.

    IMHO, you cant record both from the mic input and the line input at the same time, not in audacity. you can however use a Y cable into your mic/line in, and each end of the Y goes into your bass/voice. then you'll have bass on left, and voice on right, or vice versa.

    you can split the stereo track into 2 mono tracks later. read the help file of audacity.
  10. Oh ok thanks. Will a double minijack adapter (something like THIS) work?