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Versatile Hobbyist PC Setup on the Cheap

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Hockey Rocker, Feb 7, 2009.

  1. Hockey Rocker

    Hockey Rocker Former Member

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    I've had a Line 6 Toneport UX1 for a couple of years now, I guess. It's proven to be a nice USB interface to my PC for home recording and goofing around with the headphones on. The Gearbox software that came with it has a bunch of cool amp/effect models and free artist presets available online. I even hooked it up to my studio monitors for those times when my Blues Jr. wasn't getting the sound in my head.

    Recently Line 6 emailed me and prompted me to download the POD Farm software, no charge. Cool. I like it. It's a sort of "new look" Gearbox that captured all my presets, no problems. So, this prompted me to run down the basement and find my cheesey little Ibanez Bass amp with RCA jack inputs. It's really not a bad little amp, the Soundwave 20 Watt 8" speaker.

    So here's the versatile setup that I'm working with, a nice setup on the cheap for me.

    Telecaster > Line 6 Toneport UX1 > Dell PC > POD Farm software > Toneport > Ibanez amp.

    It is amazing the variety of sound I'm getting at loud (at home) volume. Sick really.

    This is no revelation for the experts, I'm sure. But for a doofus like me goofing around at home I'm in awe of the possibilities. Fun stuff that would've cost tens of thousands to acheive back in the 70's and 80's. This setup is a couple of hundred clams without the guitar of choice or computer.

    If you have any kind of functional PC this setup could work for you, I'm sure. The UX1 has it's own soundcard. Just a thought.
     
  2. tele salivas

    tele salivas Poster Extraordinaire

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    Thanks Hockey Rocker, I am a bit of a doofus on the computer and have never played or recorded on the one at home, mostly cause I don't want to get into some situation awhere I have to spend a bunch of bucks to get something usable going, but your suggestion seems very workable, thanks again
     
  3. beep.click

    beep.click Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yeah, the stuff you can do at home these days is incredible.

    I remember reading about overdubs, when I was a kid. And all I had at the time was 1 tape recorder.

    Getting multi-track recording software on my PC was like growing WINGS. The first time I turned my voice into a choir, I just cracked up.

    Still crackes me up, actually...
     
  4. tele salivas

    tele salivas Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yeah, I can't wait to try some twisted versions of Louvin Brothers style vocal harmonies, especially since i'm pretty much in the baritone area...easy multitracking is what i'm looking for, I'm an old tapehead at heart, but for home and demo, man, I'm ready to grow some "wings" as well:lol:
     
  5. beep.click

    beep.click Poster Extraordinaire

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    Salivas, a lot of folks like that "Reaper" software, which you can download and try. It USED to be cheap; now I notice it's $225 for the full license. IMO, that's obscene.

    When you buy an "audio interface," they generally throw in free multitrack software. That might be all you need.

    I like Cakewalk products (like Music Creator or Sonar). If you ask me, those are about as easy as it gets. I also like Cakewalk's upgrade system: I have actually bought their cheap stuff on sale for $20, then upgraded to Sonar for maybe 1/4 - 1/3 of retail. But realistically, even the $20 package is MORE than you need, for many, many projects.
     
  6. Hockey Rocker

    Hockey Rocker Former Member

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    Yup, I started with Cakewalk Music Creator. I think it was on sale for $20.00 at Best Buy. I've since upgraded to Cakewalk's Guitar Tracks Pro 3, but even that was cheap. Works well for me.
     
  7. Frontier9

    Frontier9 Friend of Leo's

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    But the full story is that a personal use license (which entitles you to the full program) is $50 - far from being obscene considering that it is a full featured piece of quality software. For the hobbyist I think that is pretty reasonable. If at some point you start making some money from your recorded music, throw Cockos Inc an extra $175.00 - how is that obscene?
     
  8. beep.click

    beep.click Poster Extraordinaire

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    It's obscene because in my opinion it's obscene.

    If I buy a Fender or a Squier guitar and I suddenly start making money with it, I'm not compelled by either ethics or a software license "agreement" to send additional money to FMIC. I don't know where the software people are coming from.

    And I WORK on computers for a living, alongside the programmers, network guys, etc. I AM an I.T. guy.

    And don't no one EVEN get me started on the whole topic of software "agreements..."

    :rolleyes:
     
  9. jhundt

    jhundt Doctor of Teleocity

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    oh, go on Mr. beep.click - do tell us about software "agreements". We really want to know!
     
  10. Frontier9

    Frontier9 Friend of Leo's

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    Ok.

    Their license agreement works for me, though... I just want folks to know that the software is available for much less than the $225 that you stated in your post, under certain conditions that they may or may not be able to live with...

    :rolleyes:
     
  11. beep.click

    beep.click Poster Extraordinaire

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    Read one. Try not to retch...
     
  12. brgminicooper

    brgminicooper Tele-Meister

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    You can even add a netbook computer for roughly $300 (more if you want to spend it) and get a decent, small recording interface with free and/or cheap software. Since I have a Toneport, I don't even "need" my amp.

    In fact, I'll go out on a limb and say that a new musician who wanted to get a decent guitar (say, a CV Tele) a computer (netbook), an amp simulation program, and some recording software could get it all for under $1000.
     
  13. Strat62

    Strat62 Friend of Leo's

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    I agree on the great home systems out there. I'm computer-challenged and I've got the Echo Audiofire 2 setup that comes with Tracktion2.2 software. I just amazed at what I can do with this; IT sure as hell beats the old Akai M-8 sound on sound reel to reel I had in the 70's!:D
     
  14. Capel

    Capel Tele-Holic

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    For anyone who cares - the email I got from Line 6 this morning now allows you to buy an iLok licence for podfarm - no more having to plug in my toneport (or podxtlive) any time I want to tweak a mix
     
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