Essential Audio Equipment For a Decent Recording Studio
Many musicians or singers end up wanting their own recording studio so they have a place to put down all their music. Instead of paying someone hundreds of dollars to record your songs, why not set up your own recording studio. While it sounds like it costs a lot of money and can get very complicated, it isn’t. All you need is the right audio equipment and you’re good to go.
Most people would categorize computer, DAW and microphones under audio gear (we’ll go over these in depth a bit later), but professionals know that protecting your equipment to and from gigs is equally important. Therefore, if you perform and tour often, flight cases are a must-have audio equipment. They provide protection from various hazards such as scrapes, bumps, loading and unloading, dust and dirt. They are usually made of plastic, wood or plywood and feature a heavy-duty PE foam interior and lining, steel ball corners and sturdy construction resistant to wear and tear.
So now, let’s go over the other essential pieces of audio equipment you should have if you want to put together a decent recording studio.
The first thing you need is a decent computer and most of us already have one. If you do not already have one or would rather have a personal computer and a separate one for recording, then you should go out and buy one. You shouldn’t think too much about what computer is best for recording but rather choose something you are familiar with. The only thing you should really pay for is the RAM, try getting as much as you can afford to buy.
Once you have your computer, the next thing you will need is a digital audio workstation or DAW for short. According to to our friends at Dulcis Domus, this is the program you need to actually record and edit your music; sometimes you can also mix and master your music depending on how good the program is. A few good suggestions would be Studio One, Sonar, Reason, Audition, Cubase, Live and Pro Tools, now you just have to choose one that is in your price range or one that you think you can navigate best. Make sure to check to see that it is compatible with your computer before you purchase anything.
The next thing that you will need is a solid audio interface, this is what takes the sounds you make and turns them into a digital signal; this is where the audio interface can work its magic. The great thing is that almost any digital audio workstation will work with any audio interface so you don’t need to find one that is compatible. The best rule of thumb is to stick to two of these because you really don’t need to waste money on any more than that.
You will also need a decent microphone. Don’t get carried though – either you will only need one or eventually two. You really don’t need any more than this since you are working by yourself or doing the instruments one at a time. There are so many great microphones available these days you can pick up a pretty decent one for 100 dollars. Of course, if you are looking for something a little more specific or a certain brand, then the choice is yours.
The last thing you will need is a good pair of studio headphones so you can hear what you’re recording properly. Once you have a mix that you made, try listening to it on other people’s systems or speakers just so you can hear how your headphones might be making your mix sound. This is a great way to get a reference on how your mix will sound in other places. Of course, once you want something a little bigger, you can always invest in a monitor.