Need recording help and suggestions..

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by Fretmaster, Nov 20, 2005.

  1. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    I quit actively gigging and recording years ago and have REALLY lost touch with the latest in recording technologies. I’m hearing some great clips from several guys here and thought what better place to ask for help than here! What I need is advice and or recommendations on what equipment I need to get the best and simplest digital recordings possible. All I have now is an old Tascam 4 track recorder I’ve had for years. I want to go digital now so I can do some editing on my computer. So help me out guys!! What do I need or which way should I go:

    Sound cards?
    Mics?
    Mic preamps?
    Software?
    Should I get a digital multitrack recorder!?

    I’m loving the amps, guitars and cabs / speakers I have presently so I figure it’s time to quit blowing money on playing gear and focus on some serious recording gear and honing my chops so I can share with you guys in hopes someone will dig what I’m doing these days.

    FWIW…I currently own a fairly up to date desk top and a new laptop computer. Both have firewire capabilities. I don’t know if this helps but thought I would mention it. Thanks in advance for any and all suggestions and help.
     
  2. melondaoust

    melondaoust Member

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    Look at the Digidesign MBox - two-channel recording interface with Pro Tools software. Runs off of USB.
     
  3. onemind

    onemind Member

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    Fretmaster, If you tell use what operating system you run it would help with suggestions. The old adage about choosing the software and then buying the computer to run it applies here in this sense. The platform/DAW software you choose will probably determine what interface to get.

    (s)
     
  4. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    I currently have XP Pro. And I have firewire capability also.

    Thanks
     
  5. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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  6. Antero

    Antero Member

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    What's your budget?
     
  7. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    ~$1500 but could go either way if need be.
     
  8. Antero

    Antero Member

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    How many tracks are you going to want to be able to record at once, and what sources?
     
  9. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    probably not more than 4 at the most. Most likely one or two at a time the majority of the time.
     
  10. captain_rusty

    captain_rusty Member

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    Hi :)

    One choice to make is PC vs standalone box. The PC route is what I personally would recommend, because of a) the big graphic interface on your computer screen, b) the availability of software, updates, plugins, etc... and c) the possibility to change to a totally different system without junking the hardware.

    If you've got a decent laptop, then a firewire interface box like the M-Audio Firewire 410 is a great choice, because you can use it with your desktop PC and also be portable, via the laptop.
    I think it's generally considered that you should go Firewire, and not USB, which isn't powerful enough for lots of real-time audio data transfer.

    As for software, you're spoilt for choice - often there's a decent starter version of Cubase or Cakewalk, for example, bundled with the soundcard/interface box - basically you decide how much you want to pay and take it from there :D
     
  11. thesedaze

    thesedaze Member

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    I can't recommend the Presonus Firebox enough. I've worked with the M-audio stuff, Digidesign MBox, etc. The MBox's downfall is the converters and USB. The M-Audio stuff is okay, but the drivers are always troublesome.

    Presonus has fairly decent pre's, wonderful converters, and great reliability. Not to mention the price just dropped $100 on these, so you can snag them for $299.
     
  12. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    This sounds like the way I want to go at this point. I wanted a to use firewire interface and the last thing I want it problematic drivers. Ok, I buy the Firebox. Now what all else should I go ahead and pickup to have all I need to get started.

    Mic or mics? I was thinking AKG C1000?

    Cables? I have firewire cables but what other cables will I need?

    Software? I know some startup software come with the unit but is there any other software I really should go ahead and get while I'm ordering.

    Lastly... I would like to be able to generate backing tracks from my computer. What software is the best for this?

    Thanks to all for the great suggestions and help. Help me put my final list together so I can get this stuff and start recording and sharing some of my ideas.
     
  13. thesedaze

    thesedaze Member

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    It's always good to have a sm57 lying around. You'll need to get a mic cable, and stand as well...I recommend looking into Sweetwater for your goods. The Pro Co cables are perfectly suitable for home recording. I just got a 10' one for quite cheap. I really like the QuikLok boom stands, too. Not the Microlite versions, just the regular. Every single shaft is split in 2 for micro adjustments. You can just as easily record vocals as you can a small Fender Champ combo.

    Are you looking to record vocals and guitars? Simultaneously?
     
  14. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    primarily guitar using both 2x12 and 4x12 cabinets and various heads from 10 watts to 100.
     
  15. retro

    retro Member

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    Presonus has a new FW box also. And it's $100.00 less then the Firebox.
    For what you seem to be doing it should work well for you also.
    The Presonus interface comes with Cubase LE and other software. Many interfaces come with bundled software to get you up and running.
    If you are PC based and haven't been, the KVR forum is a good place to hang out for info. As is Pro Sound Web.

    The Shure 57 is the classic mic to have in anyone's mic collection.
    If you are doing vocals also, you may want to look at adding a large diaphragm Condenser mic.


    http://presonus.com/inspire1394.html

    http://www.kvraudio.com/forum/index.php

    http://www.prosoundweb.com/

    And it's always fun to look at this stuff too..
    http://www.mercenary.com/
     
  16. thesedaze

    thesedaze Member

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    For any vocals, the Studio Projects C1 is a fantastic deal at $199. Beyond that price, but below $500, I'd say the Audio Technica 4040 @ $299. In the $500 range I'd look into the Rode mics.

    The Presonus Inspire is a great little unit (atleast on paper) as someone mentioned. Different Pre's and different converters than the firebox or firepod, so I'm not sure how it holds up....Presonus's cheaper products are often 'too good to be true' (ie. the single channel Tube Pre). The Firebox is definately tried and tested with great results.
     

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