Currently Being ModeratedMay 20, 2011 12:08 PM (in response to juanvegam)Re: HD 500 / WHAT DO I NEED TO CREATE A SIMPLE HOME STUDIO USING MY HD 500
Hey Juan, I have a small studio myself. A lot of how you decide to set up your studio will depend on what projects you plan to do. How many channels you need to record at the same time, your gerenal goal for recording and budget. If your looking for bare bones get by the Pod HD 500 will work for your audio interface though its not ideal. Heres the components you will need.
-Audio interface: Usb 2.0 or Firewire (firewire is more stable) USB is usually cheaper. Good cheap(ish) brands are Focusrite, Motu, M-Audio, Presonus. Or just use your Pod
-Decent computer at least a solid dual core if your planning on doing big sessions. I recommend an i7, mobo with intel chipset (most reliable). 4 gigs of ram min. You will need this when you start inserting a lot of plugins in your Daw. Macs are also great. When setting up your computer its good to have it on a fresh install and dedicated for recording to avoid conflicts. However if your poor like me just try to keep the clutter to a minimal and use msconfig to disable all applications on startup.
-Daw (Recording Program) All of them are pretty good these days. I would suggest making sure you get one that is compatible with VST plugins. Personally if you got the cash Pro tools 9 is a beast of a program, (9.02 is very stable too).
-Studio monitors: M-Audio makes excellent monitors, for the price vs quality on their low end stuff you cant beat them.
-Studio grade headphones, (flattest response possible) Good and cheap ones are Sennheiser and Shure <-- Personal Favorite (Shure SRH440)
-External Harddrive or Second Internal Harddrive (7200RPM for recording applications) 16meg cache or more recommended. I would go external Sata if you can that way you can take your sessions with you or use other computers. If you have Cash The Western Digital Caviar Blacks are well known in recording to be fast and rock solid.
-Midi Controller: Not completely necessary but you will want to use one eventually. Most cheap keyboards these days double as a Midi controller so you have a ton of options. I like Yamaha stuff, I find their drivers have very little issues.
-Mics: Can get by without them if your not recording acoustic instruments, micing amps or singing. This is a touchy subject for some so Ill just mention the most popular. Shure Mics: Sm57 (recording instruments) Sm58 & Sm58Beta (Singing).
Thats pretty much the basics of a home studio. That should get you started and rocking!
Currently Being ModeratedMay 22, 2011 2:56 PM (in response to irishpriest)Re: HD 500 / WHAT DO I NEED TO CREATE A SIMPLE HOME STUDIO USING MY HD 500
IrishPriest has a pretty good list. I just want to add my take on things.
Firewire may be more stable, but from my experience, unless you're using a Mac, it's more difficult to get set up and running well on a PC (especially laptops). Some of the firewire chipsets don't always play well together. I had a hell of a time trying to get a Presonus Firepod to work well with my laptop. I finally gave up, and decided to just use my Pod XT as a USB interface instead. It worked much better. Part of my problem may have been that I was using a PCI card Firewire interface, I did some research and found that if you're going to do that, you need a Texas Instruments Firewire chipset (they tend to have the least problems - my singer had to find a firewire card with a TI chipset to get his Presonus Firepod to work).
The following are my recommendations for a BARE BONES minimum setup for a home studio...
There are a lot of DAWs out there... My personal recommendation is Reaper. It's easy to use, powerful, and has a great user's guide that will get you up and running. You can download the FULL program for FREE to try it out. There are no restrictions on the program, it is the FULL program and you can download it to a flash drive (5MB). The Reaper forums are full of good people that will help you answer any questions you have as well. If you like it, it's $40-$60 or so to register (well worth the price). That registration will keep you registered for numerous updates. (If you're lazy, or cheap, no one will come get you if you don't register it, but registration helps the good stuff keep coming).
I would say studio monitors are NOT necessary. If you have a dedicated studio, and want to pour lots of money into one, then you might want to go the monitor route. But, to really set things up right, you need to treat your room acoustically (expensive) and spend a lot of time getting set up for great sound. On the bare bones side, a good set of monitor headphones can work just fine and can save you a lot of money. My recommendation would be a set of Sennheiser HD 280 Pros. You can pick them up for about $100. I've also read good things about the Audio Technica M50s (never used them though). The trick is that you have to really get to know the headphones and how what you're mixing up translates into the real world (ipod headphones, car stereos, home systems, etc.). But, that's a part of mixing on any system... you need to listen to your mixes on multiple systems to understand how the decisions you made while mixing affect the mix.
The first mics I'd buy too would be an SM57 and an SM58... Good call on those. You can probably record any type of music with those.
The hardest thing IMO to record is drums... It's hard to get a good acoustic setup for drums unless you have a dedicated studio. I'd recommend learning how to program drums via MIDI... Again, a MIDI keyboard or some type of interface will help with this (I use a line 6 KB-37) but, it's not necessary. You can program MIDI drums with just your PC. But, you'll probably want a decent plug-in for your DAW... I recommend EZ Drummer ($100 or so if you can catch a special) for a bare bones set up or Superior Drummer 2.0 for a mild step up.
Obviously, the rest is up to you (instruments, voice, playing, etc.). Expect to spend a lot of time fiddling around with things before you get some good mixes. Mixing is fun, but you have to be patient with it.
I'm posting links to a couple of tracks my band recorded with a home studio setup. The equipment we used isn't much different that what I listed above. We used a Pod XT to record clean guitar and bass tracks via Reaper. My singer recorded his acoustic guitar and vocals at his house using a Presonus Firepod and a Blue condenser mic, also with Reaper. We used plug-ins (Amplitube and SVX) for the guitar and bass amp simulations. The drums were programmed within Reaper and simulated with SD2.0. We probably have less than $1000 in equipment and software (besides the computers), much less than we'd have spent getting a few songs recorded in a studio. We used the guitar and bass plug-ins, just so we could mess around with trying different tones (that's why we recorded a clean signal, and didn't use the onboard Pod XT amp sims). I'm waiting for the Pod HD Desktop to come out. We will likely not use the plug-ins the next time around, and just use the pod sims (at least for the guitar) and will likely save a lot of time tweaking things. I'll probably still need to use my XT for the bass stuff, which is no big deal (I really hope the next updates will bring a couple bass sims to the HD pod stuff). I mixed everything myself using the headphones mentioned above, and in Reaper. These were the first tunes I ever attempted to mix, so I'm still learning... That being said, I'm always looking for constructive feedback.
Here are the songs we recorded... Keep in mind, these songs were the first we had ever recorded and mixed. They're not "perfect" but I don't think they're crappy either. There's room for improvement, but it gives you a good idea as to what you can do at home, without a dedicated studio that costs a lot of cash.
Exit Wonderworld - Sleep With the Light On: http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=9963552
Exit Wonderworld - Sunshine Gone: http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=9793663 (FWIW, I'm not in love with the guitar tone on this one, but it's not too bad).
There's a lot of good forums out there to get help with home recording. The one I got the most help from was recordingreview.com. Again, the guys there may recommend higher level equipment, but I recommend starting with some bare bones setup like I mentioned above. See if you even ENJOY the recording process before you go out spending lots of your hard earned cash on a full studio.
Currently Being ModeratedMay 22, 2011 3:25 PM (in response to juanvegam)Re: HD 500 / WHAT DO I NEED TO CREATE A SIMPLE HOME STUDIO USING MY HD 500
i just want to thank you to both answers, i have a good idea to what to do , thanks
Currently Being ModeratedMay 24, 2011 6:09 PM (in response to juanvegam)Re: HD 500 / WHAT DO I NEED TO CREATE A SIMPLE HOME STUDIO USING MY HD 500
Both great answers. Another option for headphones are the KRK 8400's. 190 ish and excellent sound keeping the bass level even and timbre high to catch the 60-400hz range without getting muddy as I find with other headphones in that range (HD280 included).
I run my POD as an interface ($550), everything is 48k and 24 bit. Drums are Alesis DM10 ($1175 plus pedals $450) with mesh head upgrade ($300) into Steven Slate Drums ( a drum VST for DAW's). My DAW software is Sonar X1 Producer ($399). KRK headphones ($190). Guitars are Ibanez H R Giger RG ($1600) and a Dean 7 String Razorback ($600 mwuhahaha).
Bass I use a VST, or transpose the Dean down -12.
Vocals, I can't sing worth **** so I'll wait to invest in mic/preamp/DI (probably go with m-audio firewire)
My computer is a 3 year old Dell XPS laptop 2 gig dual-core 3 gig ram ($600).
I've purchased all but my Ibanez and laptop in the last 2 months, so I'm fresh to all the information I have to learn about recording. However it's fairly easy to get a good sound out of this equipment.