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Back in the Game

All about the tools and techniques involved in capturing sound, in the studio or on location.

Back in the Game

Postby MuzoHub » Sun Oct 18, 2020 7:32 am

Hi All

It’s been 14 years since I had to close my studio. My landlord wouldn’t extend my lease after me moving the studio only 12 months earlier and having been very fortunate to have had a very informative visit by Paul and Hugh on one of their studio SOS visits back in (ooooh - 2003 ??)

So, I’m looking to set up again but I am very much out of touch. So, let’s have a free for all. Let’s say you’ve got a budget of £30,000 to spend on just the studio gear (forget drums and acoustic treatment for now). What would you go for ?

Software (I have a Mac Pro from 2012 with ProTools on it)
Mix console / Controller
Pre Amps
Converters
Monitors
DAW
Drum mics (the SM57 and Audix will defo already be in there)
Vocal mic

Any advice would be massively appreciated.

Al
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Re: Back in the Game

Postby blinddrew » Sun Oct 18, 2020 9:42 am

So the £30k doesn't include the cost of the room or treating it? We're just talking about what goes in the room?
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Re: Back in the Game

Postby MuzoHub » Sun Oct 18, 2020 12:49 pm

Hi.

Yes, just the equipment. I do have budget for the acoustic treatment, it’s just not included in the £30K.

Thank you in advance.
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Re: Back in the Game

Postby Martin Walker » Sun Oct 18, 2020 1:42 pm

Hi MuzoHub, and welcome to the SOS Forums! 8-)

One major decision with a new build is whether or not you actually need a Mix console. Many of us have abandoned them, instead preferring to use multi-channel audio interfaces to get more direct (and potentially cleaner-sounding) signals into the computer.


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Re: Back in the Game

Postby Sam Spoons » Sun Oct 18, 2020 4:01 pm

What is the studio going to be used for, how big is the room and will you have a separate control room or just a single recording and mixing space?
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Re: Back in the Game

Postby Arpangel » Sun Oct 18, 2020 4:30 pm

Martin Walker wrote:One major decision with a new build is whether or not you actually need a Mix console. Many of us have abandoned them, instead preferring to use multi-channel audio interfaces

Martin

What is this world you talk of? and who are these people?

:D :D :D

Yes, is this a commercial set-up? or is it going to be your personal studio?
My way of approaching this would be to figure out what, and how, I want to record, and my preferred work flow, that’s the most important bit, work flow, and then try and figure out how little I have to spend to achieve these things, £30,000 is a lot of cash, so you must be pretty serious about this, and that amount of money spent wisely will get you a hell of a lot.
As for recommending specific gear, it’s almost impossible without knowing you, and what you want to achieve.
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Re: Back in the Game

Postby CS70 » Mon Oct 19, 2020 8:55 am

MuzoHub wrote:Hi All

It’s been 14 years since I had to close my studio. My landlord wouldn’t extend my lease after me moving the studio only 12 months earlier and having been very fortunate to have had a very informative visit by Paul and Hugh on one of their studio SOS visits back in (ooooh - 2003 ??)

So, I’m looking to set up again but I am very much out of touch. So, let’s have a free for all. Let’s say you’ve got a budget of £30,000 to spend on just the studio gear (forget drums and acoustic treatment for now). What would you go for ?

Software (I have a Mac Pro from 2012 with ProTools on it)
Mix console / Controller
Pre Amps
Converters
Monitors
DAW
Drum mics (the SM57 and Audix will defo already be in there)
Vocal mic

Any advice would be massively appreciated.

Al

Nowadays a studio is more about the acoustics of the room than anything else - that being the one thing that cannot be found easily elsewhere. But you know that already :)

Room sound aside, assuming a studio for yourself, but where you can also occasionally record other people or your band...

- As computer, I'd go for a PC with Cakewalk - max bang for the buck and money saved to invest where it matters.
- A really top end multi channel interface and one or more external good converter boxes to give you the channels number you need: RME, Antelope, UAD Apollo. Consider Dante or similar if you're going multi-room.
- Then the mic selection - it's where most of the money should go. After performance and room, mics are the most important bit so worth to put money there.
- If you mix, a range of good effect plugins
- A physical controller surface if that's important to you
- A good set of DIs
- A good monitor controller with talkback and flexible cue mixes to be able to handle both the single-person recording and the band situation (i.e. when you're both the performer and the engineer and when you are recording others).
- Preamps.. if you like to work the signal on the way in, two or three channel strips (one very clean - say a Grace or Millennia, others potentially more colored, something tubey and the inescapable 1073 clone with EQ) can help. Of course the more the merrier but in general you can use the interface preamps with zero problems.
- For the effects you use most, you could consider outboard hardware because of the way you can use your fingers instead of the mouse. For me that's a 1176, a LA2A, a Pultec and a good parmetric EQ (gee, I'm describing my own setup here). But it's all optional. Plugins are great.
- good monitors
- as many tracking headphones as you plan to need (I use AKG M50x and DT 770, but there's plenty models, so long they isolate is fine) and great mix headphones.. I heartily recommend the Audeze LCD-X as they allow you to work like you would with monitors.

That's pretty much it I guess. :D
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