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Thread: Any recommendations for home recording gear?

  1. #1
    Registered User Mike Rodbell's Avatar
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    Default Any recommendations for home recording gear?

    I'm looking for something that would work well with both acoustic & electric (guitar, bass, synth) instruments & my laptop. The following looked interesting: http://www.musiciansfriend.com/pro-a...LAID=972620800

    Has anyone out there used this setup? Anything else you'd recommend? The price looks reasonable (~$250).

    Mike

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    Registered User almeriastrings's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any recommendations for home recording gear?

    That's a very good little package to start on, and is superb value. The interface is fine. Basically similar to other USB interfaces in the same price range, with better than average preamps and stable drivers. I have not used the included mic or 'phones, but they are certainly great value in this package. The mic looks very similar to the Samson CO1 (non-USB version) design.. and several others...... Presonus do not actually make mics (or headphones) so it may well be the same thing, re-branded. What I can comment on based on personal experience, is the Studio One DAW software. This is absolutely excellent. I had been using Logic Studio 9 for several years, and before that, Pro Tools, but a few months ago, tried out their 'trial' version for 30 days. The workflow and logical () layout is so fast and easy to use, and the general facilities so good that I ended up springing for the whole 'Pro 2.05' package. Now.. this is really exactly the same as the 'Artist' version included with this outfit, but with significant extras: namely, ability to run additional, non-native plugins, a mastering (red book) section, and ability to run hardware sends and returns with automatic latency compensation (allowing you to use external rack compressors, FX, etc.), plus integrated Melodyne pitch-correction software. There is a comparison chart here:

    http://studioone.presonus.com/what-are-the-versions/

    You can also download a trial version..or even a (rather cut down, naturally) totally FREE version.

    There is an upgrade path...however, you may find the 'Artist' version does everything you need if you are only doing basic tracking. The included plugins (EQ, compression, reverb, etc.) are all very, very acceptable quality. Much on a par with anything in Cubase, Sonar or Logic to my ears. There will be almost no setup involved in that outfit, as it will automatically recognise the interface and you can be up and running in no time. I very much doubt you could put together a significantly better sounding/performing kit than that for anything like the price. It is a very good deal indeed.
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    Registered User Mike Rodbell's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any recommendations for home recording gear?

    That's very helpful! I think I'll start with the Presonus rig & take it from there. It looks like the features of the Artist SW are quite good, and should I need / want to cut mp3s, I can always either upgrade or just use some of the other conversion programs out there.

    I checked out a few other chat boards (there are a few out there for home recording enthusiasts) and they seem to generally concur with your recommendations.

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    Registered User almeriastrings's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any recommendations for home recording gear?

    I think you'll be happy with it. Just found this fairly comprehensive video review of it:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k2Gjq0DKonA

    Only bad part there is the music used to demo it!!!
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    Registered User Mike Rodbell's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any recommendations for home recording gear?

    Haha! Everyone's taste in music can be a bit different. Thanks for the pointer to the demo. That helps in walking through the general product & software package. It definitely beats the old Sony Tascam 4-track cassette studio I'd purchased in 1983 (which I suspect no longer works, but for some inexplicable reason is still in my basement).

    For what I'm likely to start with, I suspect that this package will suit me just fine.

    Thanks again for the tips!

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    Registered User Justus True Waldron's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any recommendations for home recording gear?

    I run one of the 8 channel presonous interfaces in my studio, as well as the Studio One software, and I have to say I love both. I've used a number of different interfaces over the years, and software from audition to cubase to DP and Pro Tools. The ease of use and stability here is hard to beat... and it sounds good too!
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    Default Re: Any recommendations for home recording gear?

    I started a similar thread a while back. I have a presonus firestudio project. I have never been happy with the depth or clarity of the presonus on my acoustic recordings of my mandolin and guitar... especially my mando. I had many suggestions of adding pre amps and mics. I added a neuman mic and a Grace M101, and a GAP Pre 73 preamp. These did not help much. I finally broke down and ordered an RME Babyface which arrives friday. If anyone is intrested I'll post and let you know if it makes any difference.

  8. #8
    Registered Mandolin User mandopete's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any recommendations for home recording gear?

    Nice videos, thanks for posting that link!
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    Registered User almeriastrings's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any recommendations for home recording gear?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandosummers View Post
    I started a similar thread a while back. I have a presonus firestudio project. I have never been happy with the depth or clarity of the presonus on my acoustic recordings of my mandolin and guitar... especially my mando. I had many suggestions of adding pre amps and mics. I added a neuman mic and a Grace M101, and a GAP Pre 73 preamp. These did not help much. I finally broke down and ordered an RME Babyface which arrives friday. If anyone is intrested I'll post and let you know if it makes any difference.
    To be perfectly honest, if you were not getting "depth or clarity" with any of the gear mentioned above, I would be surprised if the equipment was primarily responsible, unless there is a fault with the A/D converters in the Firestudio. You should be able to get extremely clean, well-defined recordings with that. The GAP Pre 73 is pretty colored, while the Grace is very clean.... but both sound very nice indeed in their own way, and coupled with a Neumann, you should be good to go! Differences between converters as such (once you get in to the medium-higher price ranges) are very, very subtle. Less to do with clarity as such, more 'spatial focus' ....it is rarely night and day. You need a seriously good monitoring setup and accurate environment to hear it. What is your recording acoustic environment like? Monitoring environment? Room treatments?

    Regardless, I am sure you will enjoy the Baybyface. I have not used one myself, but have used other RME stuff and it is up there with the best.
    Gibson F5 'Harvey' Fern, Gibson F5 'Derrington' Fern
    Distressed Silverangel F 'Esmerelda' aka 'Maxx'
    Northfield Big Mon #127
    Ellis F5 Special #288
    '39 & '45 D-18's, 1950 D-28.

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