What is the easiest way to record my bass on my computer??

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by brink22, Feb 1, 2004.

  1. brink22


    Oct 5, 2003
    So I want to record some songs on my computer... what would be the easiest way to do this? After I record it to my computer, I'll be able to use programs to add effects and such.

    So what is the cheapest and easiest way to record my bass on my computer?
  2. Sound Recorder + Microphone :D
  3. rubo


    Aug 25, 2003
    Buy a soundcard which has build in preamp.
  4. munkyboy


    Feb 1, 2004
    Any suggestions for a good one (for the money) in the $200 range?
  5. rubo


    Aug 25, 2003
    It will depend on the software you use, then you should pick the one with the best drivers for that software and your OS version. But for $200 it's hard to find soemthing with pre and AD, best option is to get something like LynxOne or RME Digi 96/8 PST then a cheap D.I pre.

  6. adman654


    Feb 1, 2004
    the way i do it; i just hook my multi effect thing to my pc via usb add some drums and stuff and im all set. works well considering youve got a multi-effect already
  7. FaBu-


    Jan 16, 2004
    I didn't understand even half of that :confused:
  8. rubo


    Aug 25, 2003
    FaBu, a driver (software written program) is a like a road map between your soundcard and your audio software, so if you have a good quality soundcard but the programmer wrote very unstable or buggy drivers then the sound quality of your recording will suffer dramatically. Also you will have tons of latency and possibly software or even computer crashes in the middle of your recording/ playback if that driver is unstable. now if you're going to spend a lot of time on the computer find a software sequencer (Logic, Cubase, Pro Tools....) which you like beast and which suits your needs best. Then you would simply look at which soundcards work best with that piece of software - meaning they have very stable drivers. Also some soundcards only have stable drivers for Win 2000 but not fro XP, so all this has to be taken into consideration.

    Another two most important features you should look for in your search for a soundcard are:

    1) Full Duplex Playback, this allows you to playback while you're recording, so if you don't have this feature, then you would have to record your bass first, only then you can play it back and hear what you recorded. Now with full duplex, you can actually hear it while recording, or monitoring.

    2) Multiclient drivers, this allows you to use the same soundcard simultaneously with more then one audio program.

  9. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    Hm, drivers usually are the same for 2k and XP...

    I recommend a M-Audio Audiophile or Delta 44 (around 200$), connect the line out of your (pre)amp with the line in, fire up your recording program and have fun.
  10. Don W

    Don W

    Jan 30, 2004
    East Bay, CA.
  11. rubo


    Aug 25, 2003
    JMX - Not necessarily, some companies try to get away from writing newer drivers for XP and there for suggest using 2K drivers, because XP & 2K are very similar. So in some cases 2K drivers work well on XP in some you'll need only XP drivers.

    Fiendish - Your problem could be latency which causes distortion, meaning increase your buffer size to something like 512 samples or even 1024 and see if things clear up. Also it could be because it's a USB unit, which is not really suited well for any kind of audio recording, best option is always to use a PCI card type soundcard. Also could be simply that you're overloading the input of your soundcard which can't handle such a hot signal therefore you get distortion, so a pre or a compressor in the chain would be a good solution as well.

  12. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
  13. Brink22,

    Have a look through the FAQ (this question has come up frequently... :) ) and if you still have some questions, then post back. It will help a lot if you are specific about what kind of computer and soundcard you have currently.

    Have a good one!
  14. Hi all,

    Here's a brief rundown on an easy and extremely cheap way to record. It works, costs less than $100 (not including the cost of audio recording software like Cool Edit, Pro Tools, Cakewalk, etc - I'm assuming you'll already have something), and sounds decent.

    First, I have a basic Behringer Eurorack four channel mixer (any kind of mixer will work as long as it has an output that you can use to hook up to the direct input of your sound card). I have the mixer I bought for $59 and use the tape out to hook a "stereo to mini plug" cord into my sound card.

    Basically, I take my bass (or guitar, etc - whatever you want to record) and hook it into the mixing board. If I'm using effects, I'll run a direct out or microphone setup with my amp into the board. Then I open up the sound recorder program (in my case, Cool Edit Pro) and away I go! That simple! Cool Edit is multitrack capable, so I can record one track, then play it back while recording the second track, etc.


    Sound Card: The better the sound card the better it'll be. BUT - mine is a $20 Hurricane sound card I got at Circuit City. The important thing is that it's full duplex (which it'll say on the box somewhere). Also, make sure the full duplex sound card doesn't downconvert the signal in full duplex mode (aka - record in 16 bit but play back simultaneously in 8 bit, which will make it sound like a scratchy AM radio). The $20 sound card I bought is full duplex in 16-bit 96 khz, which makes it an easy and extremely cheap way to get what you want. If you wish to spend more, It'll probably have better things like direct stereo inputs, some even have microphone-style inputs, etc - but they're really not needed for basic recording provided you can use a mixer or whatever to plug your instrument into.

    Software: You want a basic multitrack software audio recorder if you want to play more than one instrument on the track. If its just an acoustic guitar-voice thing, you probably don't even need a multitrack-capable audio recorder.

    That's it! With a little hard work on your part, you can actually get a recording to sound pretty good!

  15. i got an input that i use from one of my firends microphones that you can plug it into a computer microphone input, hey, it'll prolly mess up my comp. someday or not, but i dun care it works. Before that i used to just use this crappy microphone and hang it down infront of my amp. :bassist:
  16. dave_clark69

    dave_clark69 Guest

    Jan 17, 2003
    If you are in a band you might be able to go round to a friends dwelling and hope they have a really good soundcard. If not you can record on the line in on an mp3 player. I did it with a xclef hd500 (which i took back) with a corvette 4 string. Sounded amaizing. but i then plugged my guitar into my amp, then into the mp3 player, and it was all fuzzy because it was too loud, so keep the volume low-ish.
  17. unrealrocks


    Jan 8, 2004
    I just take a line level from my amp, into the line in and off we go :)