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First post (Hi), and vocal recording

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First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby mb_r » Wed Jul 24, 2019 2:56 pm

Hi all,
I am a singer and would love to set up a starter home studio to record some ideas.
All that I have so far is a MacBook Air and my two dynamic mics ( a Shure Beta 58A, and a Sennheiser E 945).

Considering that I have absolutely no experience with home recording, any advice (especially on audio interfaces) would be appreciated!

Cheers
Amber
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby MOF » Wed Jul 24, 2019 3:57 pm

Hi Amber, it all depends on your budget and which version of MB Air you’ve got.
The latest version has USB C type connectors so you can use a Thunderbolt type interface, earlier versions had USB 2 connectors.
I would think that Focusrite will have a suitable interface for you at a reasonable price https://focusrite.com/
You will need closed back headphones to monitor your recording while preventing spillage from the backing track getting into the microphone/s.
Obviously you will need xlr cables for the mic’s and stands for them too.
A separate windshield that attaches to the stand might be useful if you get very close to the mic when singing.
Try Garage Band, which is free on the Mac’, and then consider Logic X for more versatility, sounds, plugins etc.
For speakers, not vital but useful for mixing, you could use an existing hi-fi with suitable cables but keep levels moderate as they’re not designed for music recording.
If you get into recording then I suggest you get some active monitors instead.
I hope that’s of some help.
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby ConcertinaChap » Wed Jul 24, 2019 4:02 pm

Hi and welcome.

There's been a recent thread called "Best audio interface around 100€" which can be found here and which covers a lot of ground around audio interfaces for someone starting up. It's probably worth a read.

Cheers,

CC
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby hobbyist » Wed Jul 24, 2019 4:44 pm

mb_r wrote:Hi all,
I am a singer and would love to set up a starter home studio to record some ideas.
All that I have so far is a MacBook Air and my two dynamic mics ( a Shure Beta 58A, and a Sennheiser E 945).

Considering that I have absolutely no experience with home recording, any advice (especially on audio interfaces) would be appreciated!

Cheers
Amber

Suggest you read a couple or more books on home recording and home studios before buying anything. They are mostly dated but will generally cover the topics you need to know about even if their gear suggestions are obsolete.

Since you have the macbook and some mikes first look at an audio interface. Check reviews and read lists of suggested ones on line.

You do not need to spend a bundle to get one that is plenty good enough. I would suggest considering something with 4 mike preamps so you could grow when that time comes. But if cost is an object you could get by with just one pre.

You may want to consider a mike stand. And you will need various cables and possibly a power supply too.

Then you need a DAW in the macbook. I guess there is a version of garbageband for that device. Audacity may have a mac version. Cakewalk nee sonar is windoze only. There are others if you want to pay for a fancier DAW.
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby Dr Huge Longjohns » Wed Jul 24, 2019 4:47 pm

Yes, get an interface and some headphones and you're good to go. One of the biggest decisions to make is how future-proof do you want your interface to be? If you can only imagine using it to record instruments or vocals one track at a time, you only need something very simple with one or two inputs. But if you think you might get into more complex scenarios where you're recording lots of musicians all at once and even drums, you'll need a lot more inputs.

If it were me, I'd go for a simple interface and the best headphones you can afford. Garageband that comes with the mac is fantastic and you can make pro, release-quality recordings with it.
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby hobbyist » Wed Jul 24, 2019 5:40 pm

mb_r wrote:
Considering that I have absolutely no experience with home recording, any advice (especially on audio interfaces) would be appreciated!

Amber


Check out this list of top interfaces for 2019
Read the specs and compare to your needs
Read the reviews and verify its the one you would be happy with


https://www.sustainpunch.com/best-audio ... beginners/

Audio Interfaces for Beginners – Top 7 [FOR 2019]

PreSonus AudioBox USB – $ – Buy on Amazon
Focusrite Scarlett Solo [2nd Gen] – $ – Buy on Amazon
Behringer UMC 404HD Audiophile – $ – Buy on Amazon
M-Audio M-Track 2X2 C-Series – $$ – Buy on Amazon
Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 [2nd Gen] – $$ – Buy on Amazon
Focusrite Scarlett 2i4 [2nd Gen] – $$$ – Buy on Amazon [Editor’s Recommendation]
Apogee ONE Audio Interface – $$$$ – Buy on Amazon

I have the 404 and am happy with it.
I have two other bigger ones.


More info to help you decide at;

https://ehomerecordingstudio.com/home-r ... ssentials/

https://www.gearank.com/articles/recording-gear
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby blinddrew » Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:14 pm

Personally I'd back up Hobbyist's suggestion for doing a bit of reading first. Mike Senior is a regular contributor to SOS (and this forum) and he's done a couple of books called 'Recording Secrets for the Small Studio' and its companion 'Mixing Secrets'.
They're excellent introductory texts but they're also far more than that and will remain useful reference books for plenty of time.
Well worth the cost and time investment. :)

N.B. I have no connection to Mike or his publishers, I just really rate the books. :)
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby hobbyist » Thu Jul 25, 2019 12:51 am

blinddrew wrote:Personally I'd back up Hobbyist's suggestion for doing a bit of reading first. Mike Senior is a regular contributor to SOS (and this forum) and he's done a couple of books called 'Recording Secrets for the Small Studio' and its companion 'Mixing Secrets'.
They're excellent introductory texts but they're also far more than that and will remain useful reference books for plenty of time.
Well worth the cost and time investment. :)

N.B. I have no connection to Mike or his publishers, I just really rate the books. :)

I have some of his books. I would definitely read the one on small studio before buying stuff. Mixing info can come later.
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby MOF » Thu Jul 25, 2019 5:57 pm

Just wondering if our replies were of any use Amber?
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby mb_r » Fri Aug 02, 2019 3:22 pm

So sorry for the late reply, I ‘be been lost in the reading about vocal recording and audio interfaces.
Thank you very much for your advices.
Will let you know what I will end up buying! :mrgreen:
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby Guest » Sun Aug 04, 2019 12:23 am

mb_r wrote:Hi all,
I am a singer and would love to set up a starter home studio to record some ideas.
All that I have so far is a MacBook Air and my two dynamic mics ( a Shure Beta 58A, and a Sennheiser E 945).

Do you own a mixer?
Guest

Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby Mike Stranks » Sun Aug 04, 2019 8:37 am

night ans day wrote:
mb_r wrote:Hi all,
I am a singer and would love to set up a starter home studio to record some ideas.
All that I have so far is a MacBook Air and my two dynamic mics ( a Shure Beta 58A, and a Sennheiser E 945).

Do you own a mixer?

If you don't own a mixer then stick with the audio interface approach... don't adopt the mixer one.
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby The Elf » Sun Aug 04, 2019 8:59 am

Mike Stranks wrote:
night ans day wrote:
mb_r wrote:Hi all,
I am a singer and would love to set up a starter home studio to record some ideas.
All that I have so far is a MacBook Air and my two dynamic mics ( a Shure Beta 58A, and a Sennheiser E 945).
Do you own a mixer?
If you don't own a mixer then stick with the audio interface approach... don't adopt the mixer one.
+1!
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby Zukan » Sun Aug 04, 2019 11:23 am

Amber, if you're really stuck, message me and I will call you and guide you through this beginner mayhem.
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby ef37a » Sun Aug 04, 2019 11:46 am

Hi Amber and welcome,

All great advice to be sure. Now one of the things that tends to throw (WTGR) "noobs" when they first hook up a mic to an AI and get the meters in the computer working is the low level they seem to get. This is especially the case if they have ever use a tape based recording system .

I don't know Garage Band (but will look it up soon) but I am betting the signal meters are much the same as most recording software? (called a Digital Audio Workstation) . You have a scale, vertical or horizontal and numbered top to bottom 0 to usually around -60.
That scale is "Decibels Full Scale" or dB fs, When you start recording you want those meters hovering around -20dB fs and the loudest peaks no higher than -8 or -6 at the very most.

This all assumes you set to record at 24 bits (and 44.1kHz). Sorry about the technicals but there is ome stuff you really HAVE to know.

Dave.
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby Guest » Sun Aug 04, 2019 2:04 pm

Mike Stranks wrote:
If you don't own a mixer then stick with the audio interface approach... don't adopt the mixer one.
How is he going to amplify his dynamic mic with an audio interface?
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby Kwackman » Sun Aug 04, 2019 2:33 pm

night ans day wrote:
Mike Stranks wrote:
If you don't own a mixer then stick with the audio interface approach... don't adopt the mixer one.
How is he going to amplify his dynamic mic with an audio interface?

Most interfaces have mic preamps built in. You can get ones with a single mic-amp as well as ones with multiple mic preamps.
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby Mike Stranks » Sun Aug 04, 2019 3:48 pm

night ans day wrote:
Mike Stranks wrote:
If you don't own a mixer then stick with the audio interface approach... don't adopt the mixer one.
How is he going to amplify his dynamic mic with an audio interface?

The same way as you'd 'amplify' any other mic in an audio interface.

Eg:

Image



And BTW... with the name 'Amber' this could well not be a 'he'.
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby ef37a » Sun Aug 04, 2019 4:04 pm

Aw Mike!

Did you HAVE to put up the cheapest, one lunged interface, bog standard interface there is?

Them's for podders only.

Dave.
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Re: First post (Hi), and vocal recording

Postby blinddrew » Sun Aug 04, 2019 4:33 pm

ef37a wrote:Aw Mike!

Did you HAVE to put up the cheapest, one lunged interface, bog standard interface there is?

Them's for podders only.

Dave.
Think we might be missing the point there Dave! :D
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