What is the easiest way for a non-tech guy to record?

dougb415

Member
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9,828
One of my oldest friends is also an excellent drummer.... and completely non-tech (even email confuses him at times). We live in opposite ends of the country but would like to do some recording. What would be the *easiest* way for him to record some good quality drum tracks and send them to me? I'm thinking a simple 3-mic setup into a standalone recorder, burn tracks to CD, drop in the mail. Anything simpler out there?
 

Shiny McShine

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9,490
Depends on how he plays. A simple stereo mic setup from about 5' could work but most drummers get really weird about not having their snare miked close. You have to have a descent room to pull of ambient miking also. The drummer would have to have a lot of finesse to pull this off too.

I'm thinking that he should go to a studio and just pay a good engineer to do his kit. In the long run, he'll have less frustration and you'll get more usable tracks.
 

rob2001

Member
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16,927
Depends on how he plays. A simple stereo mic setup from about 5' could work but most drummers get really weird about not having their snare miked close. You have to have a descent room to pull of ambient miking also. The drummer would have to have a lot of finesse to pull this off too.

I'm thinking that he should go to a studio and just pay a good engineer to do his kit. In the long run, he'll have less frustration and you'll get more usable tracks.

Not to derail, but I have a funny story about snare mics. My band does alot of writing and recording and I usually do a kick, snare and 2 overs. I found I was getting great snare with just the overs so I wired up to record without a snare mic. My drummer freaked out and even though I rarely used the close-mic'd snare in the recordings he insisted I put one on it. So I did, but I never assigned it to a track and we recorded. He gloated on how he was right about the close snare!!


To the OP, i'd think you would want compatable systems, whatever you may choose. With a computer rig you could actually send raw tracks back and forth but if he's not to good with tech stuff maybe a stand alone would be good. Either way it's gonna take some effort on his part to figure out whatever medium you choose. I'm not sayin anything about your guy, but my drummer has a hard time setting up a DVD player!! But I get great sounding drum tracks with a kick, 2 LDC overheads, and of coarse the close snare!! I do use the close snare at times.
 

kselbee

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,604
I have a technically challenged friend that lives 500 miles away and we collaborate using the Boss BR600. I record and mix my parts and send him the flash card in the mail and then he records his parts and sends them back on the flash card and I mix and burn to CD. I tried to get him started using a variety of software but found that a standalone unit was much easier for him to grasp.
 

Orren

Member
Messages
1,142
Well, if he's not tech enough to plug microphones into XLR jacks, get a good level, hit record before he starts playing, and stop when he's done, you're out of luck. Split the cost of an hour of studio time, and have a pro record him.

If he's tech enough to do that, then he can get a standalone recorder from BOSS, ZOOM, etc. If he can't figure out how to transfer the files to his computer, he can always send you the entire recorder, and you can do it.

If he's tech enough to transfer audio via USB into his computer and send you the files via email, he's probably savvy enough for a program like GarageBand. If he doesn't have a Mac, tell him that it is a less scary computer than a PC, and if he's got problems navigating around Windows he'll have a bit of an easier time on a Mac anyway. If you're not a Mac user yourself, GarageBand is free with recent (2004+) Macs, so there's nothing to buy. He'll just need an audio interface with XLR jacks.

Orren
 

dougb415

Member
Messages
9,828
Well, if he's not tech enough to plug microphones into XLR jacks, get a good level, hit record before he starts playing, and stop when he's done, you're out of luck. Split the cost of an hour of studio time, and have a pro record him.

If he's tech enough to do that, then he can get a standalone recorder from BOSS, ZOOM, etc. If he can't figure out how to transfer the files to his computer, he can always send you the entire recorder, and you can do it.
Studios are not an option where he lives, and his free time is so sporadic that he wouldn't be able to schedule time in advance. He has enough know-how to plug mics in, check levels, etc. It's when it moves to a computer that throws him. I think I am going to recomend a standalone recorder.

Thanks for all your suggestions folks!
 




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