Studio recordings are usually very expensive and a lot of hassle if you need to record music frequently. However, a lot of equipment available in the market can help you setup a home studio for yourself with a small investment. If you have the correct equipment, you will soon be able to record your music in your own professional home studio.
A recording device is the first essential equipment required for your home studio. Your computer will be the perfect recording device if it has a built-in sound card. If you want to enhance the quality of your recording, consider investing in a new sound card that is made specifically for recording.
Computers are a highly versatile device and perfect equipment for home recording which is why most people give it greater preference over other recording devices.
Good Quality Microphone
If you are thinking of saving money, do not try to cut corners and save when buying a microphone. It is very important to have a good quality microphone as it is the source of the recording. You may be able to perform digital editing and add effects to your recording however, if the recording source is not good, the output will not be good either.
To record vocals and solo acoustic instruments, the best bet would be to get a condenser microphone. If you are recording vocals with your music, it is advisable to get a pop filter. This is a low cost patch of material that protects your microphone from sharp “s” sounds and hard “p” sounds while recording. If you intend to record a full rock band, you might need to attach a small dynamic microphone to all your instruments individually for best sound quality. Condenser mics are available in the market for under $200 while dynamic ones can be purchased under $100.
Different from the regular stereo speakers, monitor speakers are essential equipment for recording. This is because they record every sound as it is and do not color or sweeten it. This will ensure that your music is recorded just the way they sounded when it was being produced.
Most professional recordings are recorded using a multi-track format. This means that every track like drums, bass, keyboards, etc. are recorded individually. For best results, use good quality headphones to listen to the last track while you record the new one. That will keep the sound in your headphones and cut off any environmental distractions.
Synthesizer and MIDI controller
A synthesizer is basically a keyboard that will play a variety of different sounds depending on how it is programmed. They come in a range of sizes and shapes such as wind instrument synths, guitar synths or drum machines.
Similar to a synthesizer, a MIDI controller does not produce any sound on its own. It is a controller in the literal sense and resembles a video game joystick. MIDI controllers produce MIDI data that can be utilized to play other software or hardware based synthesizers. For instance, you can use one MIDI controller to play an entire set of drum machines and synthesizers interconnected with each other.
This acts as an external sound card. Rather than plugging all the equipment like digital instruments and your microphones into your computer, you plug everything on to an audio interface. This external box is connected to your computer using a single cable which can either be a Firewire or a USB.
The function of the audio interface is to convert the analog signals into digital signals. This takes the work load off of your computer system. These are mostly beneficial for laptops that have a slower processors and no space to insert external PCI cards.
Also called breakout boxes, these audio interfaces are available in the market in a huge variety. The interfaces have different quantities of microphone pre-amps which may range from 2-12. The number of knobs also varies. These knobs are used to manage the recording level of every microphone. Buy an interface that best suits your pre-amp needs.
After understanding the basic requirements of setting up a home recording studio, you can now go and purchase the equipment and start recording at home.