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Gear Overrated, Skill Underrated?
Old 5th April 2016
  #1
Lives for gear
 
boombapdame's Avatar
Gear Overrated, Skill Underrated?

How many feel gear is overrated and skill is underrated? I'm more about developing skill for music making based on certain aspects of the genre(s) that interest me more than obsessing over gear.
Old 5th April 2016
  #2
Gear Head
 

Overall, you're correct.
For instance, I love my UAD plugins, but I can still make my DAW's basic plugins sing just as well with slightly more effort.

On the other hand, you're the best swordsman in the world.
I have a greatsword.
Here's a stick.
EN GARDE!
Old 6th April 2016
  #3
Lives for gear
 
raggedman's Avatar
 

Instantly pokes you in the eye, and takes your greatsword.
Old 6th April 2016
  #4
There is a lot of jumping around on tables and bouncing up and down stairs when it comes to sword fighting…so its worth spending time on your general fitness too…rather than just having a well honed wrist.
Old 6th April 2016
  #5
Lives for gear
 
Theo Stobbe's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by boombapdame View Post
. . . certain aspects of the genre(s) that interest me more than obsessing over gear.
Often gear can be THE aspect of the genre!
Old 6th April 2016
  #6
Gear Addict
 

Skills way under rated.. I wish I had more. I find myself at times taking what I know is the long road because of bad habit or because of comfort.. like maybe I should have ducked that when I'm half way through automating something.

That said, would you ever book time at a studio with **** gear but a bold statement on their website talking about how great they are?

:D
Old 18th April 2016
  #7
Gear Guru
 

Underrated? All you ever hear on this site is people saying (about expensive gear they can't afford) "well all you need is a good song"

and the second thing you always hear is "a great engineer with an SM57 beats..."

you can hardly say skill is 'underrated' when every third post reminds us that "skill beats gear". It's a truism. I don't see anybody saying the opposite. How many posts can you find and link to here that are specifically saying "gear beats skill"? Can you link to even one that isn't joshing? So how can it be "underrated"?

The way I see it, I have plenty of skills, and all things being equal, I would like to have some great gear to go along with those great skills. Maybe I could make a better record with an SM57 than some poser with a well-stocked mic locker.

But luckily for me, I don't have to. And I know that I will make a better recording with the good gear than the same me would make with the lousy gear. It's only logical.


The site is called Gearslutz because we like to talk about gear here. Gear is something that is more fun to talk about than skill. Everybody has has a different style and a different skill set but they might all be looking at the same speakers. Gear is something that you actually can discuss "in isolation". A U87 is a U87 whether you are recording a good singer or a bad guitarist with it. Bluegrass fiddle or techno vocals.

It's not that gear is 'more important' than skill. It's that talking about gear is more fun.

If you don't like it, you can start a site called Skillslutz and only talk about skill there. I will bet that your site never gets the readership this site gets.
Old 18th April 2016
  #8
Lives for gear
 
boombapdame's Avatar
@ joeq I dig this site and see nothing wrong with it apart from trolls and/or spammers who sign up to spam their wares and not contribute anything to the forum. I just figure the acquisition of skill relevant to what is personally interesting to anyone who is an artist should be talked about more as opposed to various questions of whether or not a certain piece of gear is needed for a specific genre though I know and accept that certain gear made popular by artists in various genres are linked.
Old 18th April 2016
  #9
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeq View Post
Underrated? All you ever hear on this site is people saying (about expensive gear they can't afford) "well all you need is a good song"

and the second thing you always hear is "a great engineer with an SM57 beats..."

you can hardly say skill is 'underrated' when every third post reminds us that "skill beats gear". It's a truism. I don't see anybody saying the opposite. How many posts can you find and link to here that are specifically saying "gear beats skill"? Can you link to even one that isn't joshing? So how can it be "underrated"?

The way I see it, I have plenty of skills, and all things being equal, I would like to have some great gear to go along with those great skills. Maybe I could make a better record with an SM57 than some poser with a well-stocked mic locker.

But luckily for me, I don't have to. And I know that I will make a better recording with the good gear than the same me would make with the lousy gear. It's only logical.


The site is called Gearslutz because we like to talk about gear here. Gear is something that is more fun to talk about than skill. Everybody has has a different style and a different skill set but they might all be looking at the same speakers. Gear is something that you actually can discuss "in isolation". A U87 is a U87 whether you are recording a good singer or a bad guitarist with it. Bluegrass fiddle or techno vocals.

It's not that gear is 'more important' than skill. It's that talking about gear is more fun.

If you don't like it, you can start a site called Skillslutz and only talk about skill there. I will bet that your site never gets the readership this site gets.
This.

Spot on.
Old 18th April 2016
  #10
For me, it's the following hierarchy>

Song > Performance > Engineering > Everything else.

Without a great song played well, it's dead in the water. But, a bad engineering job can definitely handicap a great song performed well. It's why I think pop punk got so polished about 15 years ago.
Old 19th April 2016
  #11
I've yet to hear an album tracked on mediocre gear that didn't sound mediocre from a sound quality standpoint.
Old 19th April 2016
  #12
Gear Nut
 
chip's Avatar
 

I sometimes like to mix with stock plugins (my own songs) just to know where my guts are. No fancy saturation,classic reverb emulations, outboard gear..None of that. Just the very basics. The better i get, i know i'v learned something along the way.
Old 7th July 2019
  #13
Lives for gear
 
soundmodel's Avatar
 

I'd say this is a "moving target". Based on personal experience.

I tend to go through phases when I think:

"Oh this piece of gear will make my music better."

Then there are phases, when I think:

"I can make music using about any gear, so the gear doesn't matter from the perspective of _being able_ to make music."

Lately I've been very long in the "skill trumps gear" view. This is motivated by the "fact" that I think that there's more gear on the market than is necessary to make good music. Thus I believe that "gear > skill" is a sign of an amateur.

I can extend this a bit:

Good gear will not "replace" bad skill.
Good gear _can_ lead to better results, if the utilizer is skilled.
Bad gear doesn't have to hinder someone skilled.
Bad gear and bad skill is just bad.
No gear is a limitation for producing something that someone finds interesting. Because "interesting" is a matter of perception.
Old 8th July 2019
  #14
all craftsmen have the same tools, yet very few of them master the craft....
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