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Best and cheapest gear you're not ashamed to have?
Old 8th August 2011
  #1
Here for the gear
 

Best and cheapest gear you're not ashamed to have?

I have a limited budget these days but as always i want to buy more gear so i thought i would ask the low end theory guys out there, what gear do you have that is dirt cheap, usable but very reasonable quality. I come across recommendations every once in awhile and love hearing what cheap gear is worth having around.
Old 8th August 2011
  #2
Moderator
 
matt thomas's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Macfunky View Post
I have a limited budget these days but as always i want to buy more gear so i thought i would ask the low end theory guys out there, what gear do you have that is dirt cheap, usable but very reasonable quality. I come across recommendations every once in awhile and love hearing what cheap gear is worth having around.
for what purpose?

matt
Old 8th August 2011
  #3
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by matt thomas View Post
for what purpose?

matt
Excellent question.

To that I add a classic, found through the search function of course

Low End Gold Awards

Searching for individual pieces (mics, interfaces, monitors, etc.) should give you a good idea of what people like in the low-end category.


Good luck.
Old 8th August 2011
  #4
Lives for gear
 

price has always taken a second seat for me to quality. I'm not ashamed of anything I bought because it was good, regardless of the price.

I am usually ashamed of and get rid of cheap answers that I bought just because they were cheap, because they usually aren't really answers, they were just cheap enough that I was willing to try to fool myself.

Like, I'm not going to buy a LatchLake $800 mic stand, but the budget $10 mic stands fell apart, and the Atlas and on Stage stands and accessories have survived. The $6 guitar stands are gone, but the ones that I paid $42 for in 1974 are still working. (I've had to replace all the gum rubber with clear plastic aquarium hose....) In the 1970s, $40 bucks was a lot of dough. But amortize that cost over more than 35 years, countless gigs and moves, and they've been cheap.

Same with most of my mics, guitars, etc. Bought the majority in the 70s and 80s, some in the 90s. None were cheap when I bought them but they've never needed to be replaced because they were good quality when I bought them, even if they were used. I bought Mytek converters maybe 11 years ago and they were a mid-priced solution at the time, but how many converters and/or new setups has the average guy bought in that period of time? So who saved money? Cheap is a relative term.

In may opinion, on any given day it is better to buy one good thing, used or new, than 10 cheap things.
Old 8th August 2011
  #5
Gear Maniac
 

When I first started recording (it hasn't been that long), I bought a Behringer MIC200 preamp for $40. Can't get much cheaper than that for a mic pre. And it actually sounded it ok! If it weren't for cheap, usable gear like that, I might never have gotten into home recording the way I have (and I would have missed out on some really cool projects!).

People can bag Behringer all they want, I owe a lot to that little pre
Old 8th August 2011
  #6
Lives for gear
 

home made speaker isolation
foam, metal plate, neoprene rubber
Old 8th August 2011
  #7
Lives for gear
 
Jimbo's Avatar
EV RE-10/11 mics are a steal -- usually ~$70 on feeBay.
Old 8th August 2011
  #8
Lives for gear
I'm with Bill in that if you buy cheap you buy twice. So I don't have too much cheap stuff, but there are always exceptions. Some of mine are:

SM Pro Mpatch 2 passive monitor controller - does its job perfectly.

ART My monitor - another passive device so no noticeable loss in quality, eliminates DAW latency in recording, flawless. It allows me to whack my latency up to the max. It takes a second or so to stop and start, but the stability and extra cpu oomph you get from high latency is well worth it.

Heil PR35 - blows away many an LDC for a fraction of the cost, particularly in less than stellar rooms. Cheaper than an SM7B too (and I prefer it to the mighty Shure)
Old 8th August 2011
  #9
Lives for gear
 
ksandvik's Avatar
 

Electro Voice mics, not that they are in high regard in Europe but here in USA they are considered sub-par with Shure (????)
Old 8th August 2011
  #10
Gear Maniac
 
Earthling's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaolin View Post
I'm with Bill in that if you buy cheap you buy twice. So I don't have too much cheap stuff, but there are always exceptions. Some of mine are:

SM Pro Mpatch 2 passive monitor controller - does its job perfectly.

ART MT monitor - another passive device so no noticeable loss in quality, eliminates DAW latency in recording, flawless. It allows me to whack my latency up to the max. It takes a second or so to stop and start, but the stability and extra cpu oomph you get from high latency is well worth it.

Heil PR35 - blows away many an LDC for a fraction of the cost, particularly in less than stellar rooms. Cheaper than an SM7B too (and I prefer it to the mighty Shure)
Hhhhmmmmm? How exactly would one use the ART MT monitor to avoid latency? I have a verrrrrry humble home studio with a total **** Behringer 8 (i so wish I would have just bought the Mackie!) channel board? How would it help someone like me I wonder?

Thanks for the tip!
Old 9th August 2011
  #11
I have a digitech whammy 2 that I grabbed for 40$ at guitar center.

Love it.
Old 9th August 2011
  #12
Gear Head
 

MXL V69ME w/ NOS Mullard

A lot of people hate on it, but I like it.
Old 9th August 2011
  #13
Lives for gear
 
Insomniaclown's Avatar
 

Apex 435. Great sounding mic for $80. I have used it on guitar cabs, vocals, acoustics. Not harsh with a thick tone. Well, I like it.
Old 9th August 2011
  #14
Lives for gear
 
frans's Avatar
Palmer guitar split /w transformer isolated output and phase reverse switch.
Palmer | PGA03

High quality, low price.

Any cable tester - you will ask yourself why you didn't get one earlier.
Old 9th August 2011
  #15
Lives for gear
Earthling, that should read Art My Monitor, sorry for the typo. Here's the spiel from ART

Problem: A performer needs to hear him/herself through headphones exclusively or mixed with the output of a mixer, CD player, tape deck, or other stereo line level source. Only the mic signal, however, should be going to the main mixer.
Solution: Connect MyMONITOR between the mic and line source, and the mixer. The Mic and line Monitor levels can then be adjusted for mix and volume through the headphones. Only the mic signal will go to the board. And since MyMONITOR can be AC or battery powered, the unit can be used on a large stage or wherever there is no AC outlet nearby. Dynamic or condenser mics can be used since phantom power would come through the Mic Thru jack from the mixer or other source.
Old 9th August 2011
  #16
Lives for gear
 
krushing's Avatar
I've got an EV-RE50 that I got off an ex girlfriend for free! Not that it's that amazing a mic, but it's nice to have.
Old 9th August 2011
  #17
Lives for gear
 
The Elf's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by JinMaikeul View Post
MXL V69ME w/ NOS Mullard

A lot of people hate on it, but I like it.
I like it too. Try to bag an MXL V6 Silicon Valve. It's ridiculously good and suits some vocalists better than any other mic I've tried - and I'm including some of the great and good in that list!

I love it when GS has a downer on certain pieces of gear - more bargains for me!!
Old 9th August 2011
  #18
Gear Nut
 

Behri HA4700 off Cragslist for $50.
Old 9th August 2011
  #19
Gear Maniac
 
Earthling's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaolin View Post
Earthling, that should read Art My Monitor, sorry for the typo. Here's the spiel from ART

Problem: A performer needs to hear him/herself through headphones exclusively or mixed with the output of a mixer, CD player, tape deck, or other stereo line level source. Only the mic signal, however, should be going to the main mixer.
Solution: Connect MyMONITOR between the mic and line source, and the mixer. The Mic and line Monitor levels can then be adjusted for mix and volume through the headphones. Only the mic signal will go to the board. And since MyMONITOR can be AC or battery powered, the unit can be used on a large stage or wherever there is no AC outlet nearby. Dynamic or condenser mics can be used since phantom power would come through the Mic Thru jack from the mixer or other source.
Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions Shaolin.

However, I still don't understand how and why it would improve CPU & latency?

"ART MT monitor - another passive device so no noticeable loss in quality, eliminates DAW latency in recording, flawless. It allows me to whack my latency up to the max. It takes a second or so to stop and start, but the stability and extra cpu oomph you get from high latency is well worth it."
Old 9th August 2011
  #20
Gear Addict
Art pro vla
sm57 & sm58
Old 9th August 2011
  #21
Moderator
 
matt thomas's Avatar
well the OP hasn't returned to this thread.

Without a doubt my favorite cheap item is the dbx163 or 163x. They are fantastic to run loops through. I remember reading that Fat Boy Slim says it is his favorite piece in his studio, he runs all his loops through it too. I hadn't really tried mine before that, since I got them free. Now I love them.

There are a few in the classifieds at the moment.

I take a 10% commission heh

matt
Old 9th August 2011
  #22
Gear Maniac
 
Earthling's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by matt thomas View Post
well the OP hasn't returned to this thread.

Without a doubt my favorite cheap item is the dbx163 or 163x. They are fantastic to run loops through. I remember reading that Fat Boy Slim says it is his favorite piece in his studio, he runs all his loops through it too. I hadn't really tried mine before that, since I got them free. Now I love them.

There are a few in the classifieds at the moment.

I take a 10% commission heh

matt
Cool! these treads are gold-to me at least. Lotza good info
Old 9th August 2011
  #23
Gear Addict
 
Continental's Avatar
 

studio project c1
behringer ada8000
Old 9th August 2011
  #24
Gear Nut
 

Alesis 3630 comp/limiter. Got it in the ninetys, still use it.

But it all depends on what you are doing with your music/recording.

I recognize I spent money in worthless HW in the past, and that was because I did not set goals first. A month ago a friend of mine asked me some directions to get into digital recording. I made him spend a little less than 500 (he already has a PC) and now he has a terrific starting setup that will serve him for years. Nothing Pro, but enough to produce very serious recording. Cheap HW that he wont regret have if we make him this question in 5 years from now. And it could be even cheaper without loosing too much quality.

Regards,
Martin
Old 9th August 2011
  #25
Lives for gear
Casio CZ1000
Old 9th August 2011
  #26
Here for the gear
 

Mackie Blackjack - not the cheapest 2 pre audio interface out there, but it's pretty clean and quiet. After shipping it came out to $75/pre which isn't too bad.

I'm with a lot of the people on here that "cheap" isn't the way to go. Looking for a good value is a much better way to approach gear acquisition, IMO.
Old 9th August 2011
  #27
Gear Nut
 

Everything I own falls into this category except for my macbook.
1. Oktava mk219 used for $100. Love it!
2. Epiphone valve jr guitar amp. I had this modded, and it might be necessary, but modded it sounds incredible. Also picked it up used.
3. The little Behringer a/d converter you can get for $30. I use this all the time.
4. m-audio fastrack interface. Preamps on this sound fine.
5. Mackie Vlz the smallest one. Two smooth clean sounding preamps, tons of gain. I get a ton of use out of this.
6. EV676 "Jim Morrison" mic. Got this for around $70 on ebay, I'm getting back into using it recently.
7. Behringer V-verb, excellent Plate setting and the compressors sound good as well.
8. A cheap sm57 clone for $30. With this you can take it apart and mod it more easily than the regular 57.
- Some cheap things that didn't work out.
1. Various tape machines, none of them work.
2. EHX 12ay7 mic pre. Makes too much hum to be of any use. There's a mod to fix that but I don't know how to do it.
Old 9th August 2011
  #28
Here for the gear
 
AnalogSoul's Avatar
The Behringer HA8000 headphone distribution amp has saved my butt many times... Not ashamed to say it. Its a noisy little bastard, but it works when I need it too
Old 9th August 2011
  #29
Gear Maniac
 
KenHR's Avatar
 

Zoom Studio 1201. Funky vocoder, distortion and ring modulation effects.
Old 9th August 2011
  #30
Lives for gear
 
wwjd's Avatar
CHEAPEST, but very useful not just a toy thing in my studio is a HONEY TONE AMP. It was $20 and is a battery operated guitar amp. I use it for the following:

- hooking up to portable toy keyboard for quick idea formulation
- hook to a accoustic guitar and amp it or make it sound electric, also has a level of drive/distortion
- hooked up to drum machine for jamming out
- hooked up as crappy mono mix monitor for reference - like a cheap clock radio
- hooked up to expensive synths for alternate sound
- vocals + distortion = nuff said
- add funnel and plastic tubing and it is a super cheap "TALK BOX"

LOT of uses for $20 plus batteries!!!

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