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Thread: Need advice on getting set up to record (500-600 USD budget)

  1. #17


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    Quote Originally Posted by sgjackson View Post
    I could probably swing a 2i2/2i4 or similar. My thinking with the Solo was that it has an instrument input and a mic input, and that does everything I was thinking about doing (vox, laying down guitar/bass tracks into a VST). What're the advantages to more I/O?
    Depends what you want to do and how you want to do it.

    1 mic, 1 Hi-Z = You can record a guitar or bass with either input. If you have a pedal with two outputs, or something with a tuner out you may be able to take a modest quality DI after that pedal at the same time as micing an amp or acoustic.

    2 mic, 1 hiz - You can dual mic. That's a good thing, but it's also not really something to be messing with as a neophyte. You can also record a mic and a DI via the second pre with a proper DI box (good DI's plug into line level inputs or mic preamps).

    4 mic, however many Hi-zs: all bottlenecks are pretty much off at this point. If all you want to do is record guitars at home, this is three mics and a DI box. I have 13 pres I can use at once and I've never more than triple miced a guitar, and never used more than two in a mix.

    I'd recommend two mic inputs as it's the minimum you need to get to an early, obvious expansion of a decent DI. That said a decent DI going into a poor mic pre is only as good as the mic pre. But focusrite pres are solid even on their cheap stuff.

  2. #18


    Join Date: Sep 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cassidy View Post
    There's some free version of something called Get Good Drums. I grabbed it, but it wouldn't work with the free version of Kontakt that you needed to run it in. I did find a thread on another forum that said it was being fixed in a couple of weeks, which has probably happened already.

    I'd also skip paying for amp VSTs. All the free ones sound awesome. Unless they lack some functionality you really need, I'd stick with the free shit all the way.
    This has already been fixed. I also may be off base here, but wasn't it done by Nolly Getgood of Periphery?

    I'd recommend two basic changes to your plan, and they're both what Cassidy is suggesting:

    If, at least for now, you can get a free drum VST program, do that and give it a try. Even if ultimately you don't love it, it'll hold you for a while, and typically Toontrack does really good end-of-year sales; I've grabbed a couple kits here and there for like $15-20 or so at year end. You can also likely get EzDrummer or EzDrummer 2 at a hefty discount then, as well.

    Also, the free stuff IS really good - through a decent SM57/Mesa 4x12 with V30s cab impulse, I got depressingly close to "my" tone that I get out of a Roadster head. If down the road you decide something might work out better for you then you can upgrade then, but to get the ball rolling, free stuff is pretty hard to beat, considering it really IS that good.

    I'll second MDV on the benefit of more channels - the 2i4 might be the way to go, especially if you can save money elsewhere on drums and VSTs.

    Final suggestion, and I'll defer to the crowd on this one if anyone feels strongly against, but the only difference between a SM57 and a SM58 is the dust cover, with the smaller/flatter 57 cover allowing you to get the mic closer to a cab for close-mounting, which is the reason the 57 and not the 58 is the de facto go-to cab mic choice. You can sing into a SM57 just as easily as you can a 58, just stay a hair farther back from the capsule than you might on a 58 (or, best practive anyway is just to experiment and get a sense for what distance sounds best anyway and do that, of course). The SM57 is one of those mics you'd never NOT want to have lying around - indestructible, sounds great on guitars, snares/toms, and servicable on a whole bunch of other stuff. Neither the SM57/58 are super common in a recording studio, but the 58 is a very popular live sound vocal mic, and again the only difference between the 57 and the 58 is the shape of the dust cover, so the 57 will be a tad more versatile in the studio and will work well enough for growled vocals.
    "They can kill you, but the legalities of eating you are a bit dicier." - David Foster Wallace

  3. #19


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    Quote Originally Posted by Drew View Post
    Neither the SM57/58 are super common in a recording studio.
    This has 100% not been my experience. Every studio I've been in has a ton of 57s, and is used at least once somewhere. Snares and amps are my favorite.

    The 58 not so much, because its normally a vocal mic and in the studio you'll have access to a variety of better mics. But regardless, the SM57 is killer, I recommend owning at least 5.
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  4. #20


    Join Date: Nov 2010
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    True, actually. Many/Most studios and lots of people have enough 57s to mic up snare and toms, as they work very well on those. Generally there will be at least 2, so that mic pair techniques on guitar in particular (but lots of other things as well) can be done with 57s.

    The pop filter and shape of the ball end should affect the sound of a 58 very slightly, even at the same distance from the source, but, theory aside, it's an impossible difference to be sure you're hearing because the difference between a 58 and 57 is smaller than the difference between two 58s or two 57s. I have 2 57s and a 58 and they all sound pretty damned different. I have a favourite of the three for guitar cabs and I recommend everyone, especially new people, don't regard them as carbon copies of each other, and keep an ear out for a favourite as well.

  5. #21


    Join Date: Sep 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by thrashinbatman View Post
    This has 100% not been my experience. Every studio I've been in has a ton of 57s, and is used at least once somewhere. Snares and amps are my favorite.

    The 58 not so much, because its normally a vocal mic and in the studio you'll have access to a variety of better mics. But regardless, the SM57 is killer, I recommend owning at least 5.
    I TOTALLY said that wrong.

    Neither is common in a studio setting as a vocal mic. SM57s however are ubiquitous. Sorry if that wasn't clear from the context!

  6. #22


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    Do yourself a favor, ditch the Focusrite and get a Zoom UAC2. The preamps have less noise and the latency is darn low.

  7. #23


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    Quote Originally Posted by Drew View Post
    I TOTALLY said that wrong.

    Neither is common in a studio setting as a vocal mic. SM57s however are ubiquitous. Sorry if that wasn't clear from the context!
    Oh! Yeah that definitely makes sense. I would never use one in the studio except in very special circumstances. There are a whole host of vocal mics you would expect a studio to have (U87, SM7B, RE20, etc. etc.) that are leagues better than the 57/58. In a pinch, the 58 will suffice.

  8. #24


    Join Date: Sep 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by thrashinbatman View Post
    Oh! Yeah that definitely makes sense. I would never use one in the studio except in very special circumstances. There are a whole host of vocal mics you would expect a studio to have (U87, SM7B, RE20, etc. etc.) that are leagues better than the 57/58. In a pinch, the 58 will suffice.
    Yeah, sorry. Decent live mic since it's damned near indestructible and has pretty good rejection, and since no one can hear shit at that kind of volume anyway, but it wouldn't be the first I'd reach to while recording.

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