Home/workshop recording studio setup help

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lamanoditrento
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Home/workshop recording studio setup help

Post by lamanoditrento » Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:28 pm

So I have been thinking about recording samples of guitars on something a bit more professional than my iphone and setting up a recording setup. It would be just to record samples of my guitars so I don't think I need much but I really don't have much of a clue.

I don't mind investing in a good setup but it is really just going to be this single type of use so I am not sure what I need and what I can skip. What would everyone suggest I look into?
Trent

scripsit
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Re: Home/workshop recording studio setup help

Post by scripsit » Fri Oct 05, 2018 7:40 pm

Trent

I'd suggest this device if you want to improve the quality of acoustic guitar recording:
https://www.storedj.com.au/zoom-h5-handy-recorder

It works surprisingly well just using the built in X-Y configuration microphones.

You can record directly to the device, then transfer the file to a PC for editing and so on (it does have built in editing features, but they are tricky to use on the small screen) in a proper DAW. If you are just starting out the free Audacity program works well for topping and tailing and doing basic EQ and reverb and so on.

If you prefer, you can use the device with a USB cord into the computer and record directly through the built in mics into your DAW.

If you get serious about recording, you can plug more specialised mics, like your favourite condensors, into the Zoom, and either record to the device or use it as a preamp into the computer. The preamps seem to be very high quality.

I've got a 'proper' recording setup in a dedicated room, with reasonably expensive mics, preamp and purpose built computer and DAW, but find the Zoom works well for quick and dirty sketches anywhere in the house, or when I'm away from home. I mount it on a cheap camera tripod, starting usually about 400mm from the 12th fret, pointing at the bridge.

You'll find with all recording that the most important ingredient is the room that you're recording in, and next is where the microphone is located. The Zoom is capable of doing a remarkably accurate job.

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Steve.Toscano
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Re: Home/workshop recording studio setup help

Post by Steve.Toscano » Fri Oct 05, 2018 10:10 pm

Hey Trent.
I have-
Mic: https://www.musoscorner.com.au/akg-p170 ... microphone
Interface: https://www.storedj.com.au/native-instr ... e-elements

Connected to my laptop.

This setup is used to record all my audio, eg: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eyScnnLXFH0
(If doing video as well, make sure you think to have a clean background, unlike me :oops: :oops: )
In that clip the video is filmed separately on a Samsung phone. I then mash the audio and video together useing: https://www.openshot.org/

I have Cubase 6, although i typically don't use it when recording just a single guitar, instead i just go with Audacity as it does everything needed without all the 'extras' getting in the way.

My interface is overkill for a single guitar, you could get away with any cheap one. I got a more advanced unit as at the time I was recording live duo's with it.

I don't see the need to splurge on fancier mics (then what i have), as mostly the listener isn't using good enough headphones or speakers to be able to pick up the difference anyway.

I've been looking at a mic/software setup for android to record in the workshop on the fly, but am yet to find something suitable.

blackalex1952
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Re: Home/workshop recording studio setup help

Post by blackalex1952 » Sat Oct 06, 2018 12:46 am

I have done my fair share of recording...the zooms are good but the important things to remember are consistency in the microphone placement,the room acoustics and the ratio between direct and indirect sound. A dry sound is best for a guitar when simply recording its qualities. The term "dry" here refers to little reverberation. Rooms colour the sound, and create a reverberation of some sort along with frequency effects on the recording. So the ratio of room sound to the instrument is the critical thing to get consistency with. Remember also that most people are not listening to an instrument on a consistent speaker set up. It is probably more important for the average punter to hear some reverb and flashy playing. Having said that, the basic characteristics of the guitar will shine through. Try listening to guitars as recorded on you tube or other websites....hard to compare as the recording techniques and the playback media at the consumers end vary. Listen to your recording on a range of crappy speakers and get some kind of consistency. The zoom and audacity are a good cheap recommendation. DAW stands for Digital Audio Workstation. Did you hear about the musos who were trapped in the studio? They couldn't operate the DAW! :lol:
cheers! Ross
"Everything I say on the topic is based solely upon inexperience and assumption!"

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WJ Guitars
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Re: Home/workshop recording studio setup help

Post by WJ Guitars » Sat Oct 06, 2018 1:16 pm

Hi Trent

I have an older version of Pro tools, some 'waves' software and record in my upstairs loft studio room. I record in an acoustic controlled environment in stereo, dry no eq or effects. Less is more. On some recordings I use X - Y microphone format with a matched pair of condenser microphones and more recently use 3 pointed microphone setup (Left Centre Right). Spending time positioning the microphones is important to minimise phase cancellation issues. I like using a matched pair of ribbon microphones (Left Right) and condenser microphone blend for the centre. The ribbon microphones give a more natural warm sounds and the condenser gives the high end sparkle.

Wayne
https://wjguitars.wixsite.com/mysite-1
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blackalex1952
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Re: Home/workshop recording studio setup help

Post by blackalex1952 » Sat Oct 06, 2018 4:52 pm

Hey Trent...also beware of built in obsolescence with computers and software.
The zoom suggestion is all you need really, as long as you can record from it to the computer. I use Dropbox for large WAV samples which are the best quality, but take time to upload to websites or emails in many cases. Some websites and most emails are limited in file size, high speed internet helps. Audacity I believe will also load some good free plug ins, eg mastering compressors, equalisers etc.but changing things too much is fraught with danger for the inexperienced. Bear in mind that Mp3's modify the sound although they give smaller file sizes. Audacity will compress WAV files to Mp3... Best wishes, looking forward to hearing some recordings from you. You can beg borrow or steal some good mics to try when you get the hang of things. Also perhaps a small el cheapo mixing desk if you want to use more than two mics to pick up the instruments sound well. The mixer will plug in to the Zoom which has stereo input, the mixer having stereo output. Mic position with multiple mics is important make sure all mics measure the same distance from the instrument to avoid phase cancellations. Aim to get some decent monitor speakers or headphones....both are preferable. Then check your recording on computer speakers, laptop speakers and in the car! Zooms record at CD quality, have a solid reputation in the industry and are not limited by software changes.
Kind regards, Ross
"Everything I say on the topic is based solely upon inexperience and assumption!"

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lamanoditrento
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Re: Home/workshop recording studio setup help

Post by lamanoditrento » Mon Oct 08, 2018 9:17 am

Ok great. Thanks everyone! That is just the start I needed
Trent

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