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basic home setup to record a band Test Equipment
Old 1 week ago
  #1
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basic home setup to record a band

Hi all!

so, i have a band, and we want to start making a few decente recordings to show and promote. Doesn't have to be studio quality and anyway we don't have the budget for that.

So i've been figuring out ways to home-record us and have some measure of control in post. The band is 4 instruments: Piano, Voice, Guitar, and Percussion (light, a Flamenco cajón, basically a wooden box).

Do you think this setup would work?:

1 - digital Piano connects connects to DAW through MIDI cable
2 - Acoustic amplified guitar to amplifier and from amp to DAW (with some cable... possible?)
3 - the voice recorded with a Cardioid mic through sound interface to DAW
4 - percussion recorded with dynamic mic, through sound interface to DAW.

All 4 musicians would have headphones, so they get the 4 instruments in real time.

Although i think i can isolate the sound captured from the cardioid mic, i don't know if a couple of acoustic improvised barriers (maybe placing the percussion in a separate adjoining room) would allow me to get 4 clean independent tracks that i could post process a bit... or if this whole system i'm proposing would work at all...

people who have had similar experiences, could you please be so kind to drop a comment on this possible set-up? I'm a well rounded musician, but have close to zero experience with recording, so i'd really appreciate some input here! thanks!!
Old 1 week ago
  #2
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What DAW do you have? What recording software are you using?
Also, for the acoustic amplified guitar, name the guitar and amp. Many amps do not have an output for recording. Even if they do, the output of the amplifier straight to the DAW will usually sound very different than the amplifier sounds through a guitar speaker. If you like the sound of the amplified guitar, you might do better to buy or borrow another dynamic mic to mic the amp.
Old 1 week ago
  #3
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Hi Bushman! Thanks for the answer.

I use Audacity and Garageband as DAW. I could use either of them, i know both of them well enough. I usually record directly into one of them, but i've always only recorded individual tracks, either playing than over myself, or recording directly the band to a single mic, so i don't use specific recording software, just the DAW for everything.

Just after i posted here i showed my band mates my text, and we discussed doing the guitar exactly as you told us... either to mic the amp or to mic directly the acoustic guitar, using an extra dynamic mic, which we can get. Getting that out of the way, do you think the setup would work?

thanks a lot!
Old 1 week ago
  #4
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CJ Mastering's Avatar
Quote:
so i don't use specific recording software, just the DAW for everything.
That is what Bushman meant. He meant what DAW are you using. DAW = Recording Software
Quote:
Just after i posted here i showed my band mates my text, and we discussed doing the guitar exactly as you told us... either to mic the amp or to mic directly the acoustic guitar, using an extra dynamic mic, which we can get. Getting that out of the way, do you think the setup would work?
Of course it will work. The other way would work also.

It just all depends on How good it will work depends on your recording technique skills, your room, mic placement, the position in the room ware you set up and play, the performance of each sound source, the type of acoustic guitars you have and other variables
Old 1 week ago
  #5
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One of the reasons I asked about your interface is to find out how many inputs you have. If you want to record the whole band together (simultaneously) and have separate tracks to mix, you have to have enough separate inputs to do that. I’m not familiar with either Audacity or GarageBand, so I have no opinion on which is better.
In any case, record something! You get better by doing it and you document the band’s progress, or maybe your progress through various bands.
This week I have been working on audio from a tape (yes, tape!) of the last bar band I was in before I went to LA and started work at a studio, many decades ago. It is two tracks from two unmatched mics at stage right and stage left. One of the two mics is the mic in a Radio Shack sound level meter, and the other mic was some extra vocal mic, probably a Shure. It’s a little light on vocals, but it is otherwise just lucky/good. I am enjoying the crap out of hearing it and working on it. Good luck!
Old 1 week ago
  #6
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Thanks guys!

I will along with it, and yes, probably the best is to start recording something and be disappointed, in order to start improving :D

So far i've only recording with the zoom H1 "pointing at everybody", just to record the band and use the recordings to improve the music, but i'm kind of falling into the idea of recording good sound in a home-made context.

Bushman, that must be some feeling... hearing yourself back a few decades, i mean.. enjoy it! and thanks for the support!!
Old 1 week ago
  #7
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Integrating a small mixer would probably make things much easier. Most inexpensive mixers pass audio just fine and the pres are about as good as most inexpensive interfaces. It would really help in giving the players that headphone mix you want without latency. Inserts would give you the ability to patch in a compressor before hitting the DAW, handy in live situations.
Old 1 week ago
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilRoy View Post
Integrating a small mixer would probably make things much easier. Most inexpensive mixers pass audio just fine and the pres are about as good as most inexpensive interfaces. It would really help in giving the players that headphone mix you want without latency. Inserts would give you the ability to patch in a compressor before hitting the DAW, handy in live situations.
Yes! I didn’t think of that. Do you have a mixer?
Old 1 week ago
  #9
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Yes, i do have a mixer (access to one anyway...), a very cheap one! do you think it would do the job easier than the sound interface?
Old 1 week ago
  #10
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A mixer gives you additional inputs if you have a small number of interface inputs. You can mix (for example) several drum/percussion and maybe bass onto a mono or two-channel stereo track. It also might be a way to get latency-free monitoring while you are recording. Some interfaces give you some sort of “direct monitoring” option which allows you to monitor while recording, with no delay in your headphones. Other interfaces can only monitor from the “loopback” through the computer. That delay can make it impossible to play in time and stay together as a band. So, a lot of decisions will have to be made based on exactly what interface you have and what mixer you have.
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