Recommendations for home recording

CapnCrunch

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Help a total newb out. I didn't title this thread "recommendations for a home studio", because it is more of a man cave, and rehearsal space. I recently bought a Presonus 16.4.2AI to go with some powered Yamaha powered speakers and a handful of mics that I've had for awhile. It's a decent small PA for practice and playing with my kids, and for them to play with their friends.

The Presonus board is also a recording interface and acts as a DAW controller, so I'm thinking of picking of their Studio One 5 DAW software. I am really looking for advice on how others might go about setting up a home studio and whether I should be approaching the idea differently than I am. All of the recording hardware and the software seems to be pretty pricey for good stuff and I'd rather not make too many first time errors. I realize I already bought the Presonus board (it was used for a great price on the local CL), but I could move it on and go in a different direction if it makes sense. I'm currently looking for a decent lap top or computer for recording.

Anyway, advice, pointers, and recommendation for listening/watching/reading would be much appreciated.
 

Wulf

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i use a tascam 788 8 track..mix down onto PC
then use audio cleaning to tweak it.
i just use the tascam like you would a tape machine....all in real time...its a doddle but you need to mic up to get best sounds tried using amp sims and wotnot straight into it...they just dont sound right.
i use 2 mics to record a guitar part...one close and an ambient mic ...works well
 

CapnCrunch

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Do you have a Mac?

You can do a lot with GarageBand or upgrade to Logic if you really want to. Use your board as the Audio Interface.

I have an old Mac that I doubt even turns on anymore. It's about a 2011 mac book pro. I was looking at used Mac books today. Probably will cost me $500-$700 for a 2015-2016 mac book pro. Would you go with logic over Studio One?
 

CapnCrunch

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i use a tascam 788 8 track..mix down onto PC
then use audio cleaning to tweak it.
i just use the tascam like you would a tape machine....all in real time...its a doddle but you need to mic up to get best sounds tried using amp sims and wotnot straight into it...they just dont sound right.
i use 2 mics to record a guitar part...one close and an ambient mic ...works well

I want to make things as streamlined and straight forward as I can. It's already going to be a steep learning curve. Pretty sure of that.
 

stressdoubt

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I have an old Mac that I doubt even turns on anymore. It's about a 2011 mac book pro. I was looking at used Mac books today. Probably will cost me $500-$700 for a 2015-2016 mac book pro. Would you go with logic over Studio One?
I have an old 2009 iMac that is still going. I run Logic Pro X on it and have a Behringer interface hooked up to it for recording. Boot up the MacBook and give it a whirl!
 

Dismalhead

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i use a tascam 788 8 track..mix down onto PC
then use audio cleaning to tweak it.
i just use the tascam like you would a tape machine....all in real time...its a doddle but you need to mic up to get best sounds tried using amp sims and wotnot straight into it...they just dont sound right.
i use 2 mics to record a guitar part...one close and an ambient mic ...works well

This is pretty much identical to my setup, except I have a Zoom R16 as the capture device.
 

Wulf

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that was my first attempt with tascam
its not an uphill struggle...but you quickly improve...i know i did....thats the fun
the listening to the song over and over as you tweak every channels eq and so on gets a bit monotonous after a bit....you will never be totally happy with it either...and after you finish a song you wont want to hear it again for a week or 3
 

xtelesquirex

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I have an old Mac that I doubt even turns on anymore. It's about a 2011 mac book pro. I was looking at used Mac books today. Probably will cost me $500-$700 for a 2015-2016 mac book pro. Would you go with logic over Studio One?
Honestly, I don't know. My Mac is getting to the age where it's slow and will need to be replaced soon. The price alone for a new Mac is staggering. I know there are people here who get great recordings on Windows and I hope they chime in.

I tried Cubase before I started using GarageBand and shortly after upgraded to Logic - which I was think was around $200.

I haven't used PreSonus DAW so I can't offer an opinion on that, but I do have one of their audio interfaces and I think it's fine. I'd say try it out, and you can upgrade/modify things as you discover what does and doesn't work for you.
 

CapnCrunch

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So two questions. Did that feature the white Jazzmaster and did you play it naked as in your avatar. :lol::lol: Seriously, that was sick. Mucho respect for the playing, and recording for that matter.
 

Wulf

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So two questions. Did that feature the white Jazzmaster and did you play it naked as in your avatar. :lol::lol: Seriously, that was sick. Mucho respect for the playing, and recording for that matter.
same jazzmaster...no i was clothed at the time...it was cold enough to store meat in here on that day!
and thankyou!
 

Wulf

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Another thing to be wary of is over modulation...i thought that might have been a problem here...but it worked out ok...thats a micd up carlsbro super stingray.120 watts...1978 solid state amp..guitar straight to amp the old fashioned way...had to get it loud for that tone...and i used same amp for bass

not the jazzmaster on that one
 

CapnCrunch

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Now that I read some more, it does not look like the Presonus SL board can be used as a DAW controller. It is a recording interface however.
 

Middleman

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Studio gear is like a boat. You pour your cash into it until you get something you're proud of. It's then you notice your wife left you, your kids left for college and hey...is that a new dog? All I can say is what started out as a hobby 20 years ago for me ended up in 10s of thousands of dollars in gear. That said, if you are up for the adventure....

Find out the names of the guys who make the kind of music you like. They will likely be a part of one of the online mixer subscription services i.e. Puremix, Mix with the Masters, etc. that provide a quick route to understanding recording and things to learn. There are literally thousands of online YouTube videos as well but a word of caution, make sure the person you are getting advice from has actually recorded for a living otherwise you can run into a lot of wrong information or worse, wannabees that will take up an hour of your time and really not provide much useful information.

I think one of the best ground up recording videos I've ever watched is the Greg Wells series on Puremix. He takes your from setting up mics, to tracking, to mixing and mastering. Almost everything you need to know is in that video.

The biggest stumbling block is knowing which mic to buy. Difficult to add clarity to this, it depends on your voice because every mic will emphasize or de-emphasize a persons vocal differently depending on their voice. Safe to say, an SM58 or SM7 is a good starting point.

Most people you find on forums will recommend software that the commercial recording industry does not use. That's not to say it's not good, it's just not the norm. It will more than work however. The only downside is that most of the videos and learning tools out there will be based on Protools or Logic Pro. These are expensive. If you have the budget however, knock yourself out.

Most people start out on non standard software to learn the ropes and advance later to the high end DAWs. Studio One is a really good DAW to start with. There are also some good videos out there on that one. Actually one of the better choices you can make starting out.

Know now that Plugins will suck the life out of your wallet. Many people buy massive amounts in frustration in the pursuit of a better sounding recordings. Truthfully, I own a lot of plugins and can say that most of the quality of a recording is found in tracking good sounds (playing with mic position), using compression lightly when recording, but really, the arrangement and understanding song structure is a fundamental of any music. Over time I've come to use very few plugins except for convenience. I probably only use about 10% of hundreds of plugins because once you understand what is required, you just don't need that many. When you feel compelled to buy another plugin, reel in the impulse. Just trying to save you a buck. Most DAWs come with all the plugins you need. Not all but most.

That's all from me. Enjoy the ride. It's a very fun hobby.
 
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Wulf

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Now that I read some more, it does not look like the Presonus SL board can be used as a DAW controller. It is a recording interface however.
a DAW converter???...im not madly tech minded when it comes to computertaters...i like my old necktop one
 

CapnCrunch

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Honestly, I don't know. My Mac is getting to the age where it's slow and will need to be replaced soon. The price alone for a new Mac is staggering. I know there are people here who get great recordings on Windows and I hope they chime in.

I tried Cubase before I started using GarageBand and shortly after upgraded to Logic - which I was think was around $200.

I haven't used PreSonus DAW so I can't offer an opinion on that, but I do have one of their audio interfaces and I think it's fine. I'd say try it out, and you can upgrade/modify things as you discover what does and doesn't work for you.

I'm mostly worried about compatibility issues I guess. Logic is pretty much industry standard and its price is similar to Studio One.
 

CapnCrunch

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Have you heard of Reaper? I've heard good things about that.

I also just found this Free PreSonus software:

https://shop.presonus.com/Studio-One-5-Prime


Maybe worth researching.

Thanks! I was thinking of downloading the free version and giving it a go. The artist version is $99 and the full pro version is $299 or $399, don't remember which. Just used the link you so kindly provided and it is $399 for the pro version.
 

xtelesquirex

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Thanks! I was thinking of downloading the free version and giving it a go. The artist version is $99 and the full pro version is $299 or $399, don't remember which.
My philosophy is use what you've got. My dabbling in Cubase was solely because I got a free copy with a synth I bought.

It's far too easy to get paralysis by analysis - sometimes it's good to start with something and adjust later. Even better when you can dabble without a financial commitment.
 

CapnCrunch

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Studio gear is like a boat. You poor your cash into it until you get something you're proud of. It's then you notice your wife left you, your kids left for college and hey...is that a new dog? All I can say is what started out as a hobby 20 years ago for me ended up in 10s of thousands of dollars in gear. That said, if you are up for the adventure....

Find out the names of the guys who make the kind of music you like. They will likely be a part of one of the online mixer subscription services i.e. Puremix, Mix with the Masters, etc. that provide a quick route to understanding recording and things to learn. There are literally thousands of online YouTube videos as well but a word of caution, make sure the person you are getting advice from has actually recorded for a living otherwise you can run into a lot of wrong information or worse, wannabees that will take up an hour of your time and really not provide much useful information.

I think one of the best ground up recording videos I've ever watched is the Greg Wells series on Puremix. He takes your from setting up mics, to tracking, to mixing and mastering. Almost everything you need to know is in that video.

The biggest stumbling block is knowing which mic to buy. Difficult to add clarity to this, it depends on your voice because every mic will emphasize or de-emphasize a persons vocal differently depending on their voice. Safe to say, an SM58 or SM7 is a good starting point.

Most people you find on forums will recommend software that the commercial recording industry does not use. That's not to say it's not good, it's just not the norm. It will more than work however. The only downside is that most of the videos and learning tools out there will be based on Protools or Logic Pro. These are expensive. If you have the budget however, knock yourself out.

Most people start out on non standard software to learn the ropes and advance later to the high end DAWs. Studio One is a really good DAW to start with. There are also some good videos out there on that one. Actually one of the better choices you can make starting out.

Know now that Plugins will suck the life out of your wallet. Many people buy massive amounts in frustration in the pursuit of a better sounding recordings. Truthfully, I own a lot of plugins and can say that most of the quality of a recording is found in tracking good sounds (playing with mic position), using compression lightly when recording, but really, the arrangement and understanding song structure is a fundamental of any music. Over time I've come to use very few plugins except for convenience. I probably only use about 10% of hundreds of plugins because once you understand what is required, you just don't need that many. When you feel compelled to buy another plugin, reel in the impulse. Just trying to save you a buck. Most DAWs come with all the plugins you need. Not all but most.

That's all from me. Enjoy the ride. It's a very fun hobby.

Thanks for great advice. I knew it was expensive, but thanks for describing the rabbit hole. Forewarned is forearmed.
 




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