I'm trying to figure out if I can get a home recording setup within the christmas budget. I've looked through the past equipment postings, and checked some other home recording sites (they seem to focus on electric/drums/midi stuff and I get lost in the lingo). I'll be recording a trio consisting of clawhammer banjo, finger-style guitar, and mandolin/mandola, perhaps with an acoustic bass added. We have various pickups and Shure SM57 and 58 mikes, but I think it will be cheaper to get one mike than to get an interface that takes so many inputs (and I'd like to try the one mike setting anyway). I'd also use it lay down rhythm and/or harmony tracks for playing by myself. Can anyone advise if the following setup will suffice? -
AT 2020 cardiod condenser mike and Presonus Inspire audio interface.
The mike is less than $100 but seems to have received good reviews. Will one be sufficient for the lot of us?
The Inspire ($200)is about $100 less than the Presonus Firebox, and as best I can figure the main difference is that it the Inspire is less suited for keyboards, midi, and effects, none of which matter to me.
Most available interfaces advertise "zero latency monitoring" or something similar. Does this mean it delays the sound to your headphones so that if you record an overdub track you don't get the signal processing time lag between the original track you listen to and the new track you are recording?
Finally, the Inspire is a Firewire connection. The Tascam US 122 is same cost, similar features, same packaged recording software (Cubase LE, but is USB connection. Any reason to prefer one over the other (other than the existence of USB and Firewire ports on my computer)? I've read that Firewire connections are, in practice, faster than USB connections, but I don't know if this matters in this application.
Thanks for any advice.