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So it's time to buy recording equipment...

Instruments and Gear
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JustJeff  
8 May 2011 12:04 | Quote
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I feel like it's time to step my game up a bit. I'm going to splurge and drop anywhere from $250-$400 on some recording equipment. Whole 9 yards here.

Key components:
1) Must be able to plug into my computer... so preferably something USB since I'm on a laptop.
2) Hardware > Software... I don't want to have to have a certain computer to do my work... I'd rather most of the mixing occur on hardware than the software doing it.
3) Needs to be durable and able to last me so I can build off of it in a few years when I make more money.
4) Would like multipurpose mics that aren't just for acoustic guitar, but can record a wide range of things.

Any suggestions? This is what I've picked out so far:

Alesis MultiMix8 USB Fx $142
http://pro-audio.musiciansfriend.com/product/Alesis-MultiMix-8-USB-FX?sku=486142&src=3WFRWXX&ZYXSEM=0&CAWELAID=614233028

MXL 990/MXL991 Recording Mic Package $100
http://www.amazon.com/MXL-990-991-Recording-Microphone/dp/B0002GJI3C/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1304874223&sr=8-2
gshredder2112  
8 May 2011 12:59 | Quote
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I am the last person to give advice on recording,but i can recommend a good mic,A shure sm57.

http://www.zzounds.com/item--SHUSM57LC

^^^ this link will explain that its everything your lookin for in a mic.
RA  
8 May 2011 13:17 | Quote
Joined: 24 Sep 2008
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check out

http://www.tweakheadz.com/guide.htm

everything you need to know is there.

with usb make sure it's at lest 2.0!!!

http://www.tweakheadz.com/choosing_a_mixer_p4.htm
AlexB  
8 May 2011 13:56 | Quote
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The mixer you posted is nice,BUT its usb,and thats sloooow,better get a firewire,also the one you posted only has L/R outs,that would be my meh about the mixer,but is really cool for the price

I suggest to you the "new" akg perception series
Ozzfan486  
8 May 2011 14:33 | Quote
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I honestly have no idea, but make sure you check what comp. systems it's compatible with before you buy it. I just had to send back a $200 dollar 4-track recorder because I neglected to notice that it won't run on Win7, but only Vista. :P

Rant over.
JustJeff  
8 May 2011 14:41 | Quote
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After going thru some of those links, found a different mixer. I'm sorta settled on the USB thing... my laptop doesn't have any firewire stuff so o_0

Behringer XENYX 1204USB 12 Channel Mixer $164
http://www.zzounds.com/item--BEH1204USB
AlexB  
8 May 2011 14:54 | Quote
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Behringer preamps suck,but if you are not after "HD" quality,sounds good,but again,only the main mix can be sent to the computer
JustJeff  
8 May 2011 15:45 | Quote
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@AlexB

I've heard the Behringer is ***. Their low end *** breaks and is unreliable... but it is cheap.

What I'm trying to do is get the best bang for my $300-$400. Since I'm a hardware designer, I'd like to see as much hardware as possible with the least amount of software interference. >.
gshredder2112  
8 May 2011 16:19 | Quote
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did you look at the mic?
JustJeff  
8 May 2011 16:31 | Quote
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Yeah. It seems to be quite the workhorse... I might get that instead of the MXL's... wish I could invest in two :-P
gshredder2112  
8 May 2011 16:44 | Quote
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they are a bit high $$$,but when you you said multipurpose,those immediately came too mind.
AlexB  
8 May 2011 17:16 | Quote
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Lol the SM57 is one of the cheapest yet best mics ever,get 1 and a large diafragm condenser
gshredder2112  
8 May 2011 17:24 | Quote
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I know that alex,i was just sayin that cuz jeff said he couldnt afford 2.
JustJeff  
8 May 2011 23:37 | Quote
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Some people aren't made of money, Alex. I can't just drop $100 like it's nothing!! I have a college education to pay for >.
gshredder2112  
8 May 2011 23:43 | Quote
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^^^agreed
DanielM  
9 May 2011 01:24 | Quote
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Jeff I have this Alesis multimix you can usually get one off ebay for £80 which is quite a bit cheaper than they sell new for: http://en.audiofanzine.com/firewire-usb-mlan-mixer/alesis/Multimix-8-USB/medias/a.play,m.35430.html

I can also confirm that it is good for the money.
JustJeff  
9 May 2011 08:14 | Quote
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I was looking at the MultiMix8 for a bit, but I heard that when you plug in via USB and you're on a laptop, there is an audible high pitched hiss in all the recordings... I don't know if it's true or not but ai read it in a few reviews.
jcb3000  
9 May 2011 08:38 | Quote
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umm to save a bit of bob, you could torrent nuendo. It's a fairly lightweight recording program, but it is slightly illegal to torrent... What happened when I bought my audio interface (a cakewalk UA-25, which is a damn good one may I add) I got a disc with all the software on anyway so maybe you may get something like that with it. Most software is compatible with the hardware so there's no need to worry about that, just make sure the drivers are installed and you should be fine! As for the hissing, the problem usually is (well for me) that a button is armed that shouldn't be. Then again I tend not to use mini mixing desks all that often.
JustJeff  
9 May 2011 08:48 | Quote
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Yeah the easy approach would be to just get an audio interface and record straight from software. To be honest, I work better with physical stuff then I do with digital stuff, so I would probably enjoy having all the buttons and knobs :)

And I feel like working with an analog signal like most of these mixers should produce a higher quality result since you're not mixing a compressed digital signal :/
AlexB  
9 May 2011 08:51 | Quote
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jeff,wile transforming analog to digital,there are some steps to follow,i wont enter into much physics,the thing is,before entering into a computer the signal is processed with a low pass filter,if the fliter/converter is bad quality,you will get that typeof problems,among others.

Also,when you record it in your computer,even if you have the best analog mix,you will transferit to (most likely) 44.1/16 Bits,wich is CD quality but still inferior to "HD". digital is not bad when you know how to use it.
JustJeff  
9 May 2011 08:53 | Quote
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^^
Alex... I'm a Computer Engineer... I build DACs and ADCs... I know the process ^.^

You always will lose quality going from analog to digital... I just don't know how different it will sound because it's what you do with the signal that matters. And I don't think that I will be able to find a good mixer with an ADC that is worthy in a less than $150 product.

I know the electronics behind everything... just I don't know what happens physically when you try to play it/listen to it :/
AlexB  
9 May 2011 08:59 | Quote
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Nowadays companies focus more on interfaces with 2/4 ins and great converters rather than standar mixers,since most of the stuff today is done " in the box " of course they are not that cheap and dont have the physical pleasures of a real mixer (The Mackyes do tho..)

Again,if you really really want a physical mixer,there are options,i dont know many that are cheap tho.
JustJeff  
9 May 2011 09:00 | Quote
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What would you suggest in an audio interface/software package?
AlexB  
9 May 2011 09:42 | Quote
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You can try these

-Line6 Ux2
-Focusrite Saffire 6 USB (Ableton Live included)
-TC Electronic ImpactTwin (Ableton Live included)
-Presonus AudioBox USB (Cubase LE included)

Or even the standar M-Audio with protools ( i hate that one tho )

Phip  
9 May 2011 11:29 | Quote
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Jeff,
I have the alesis multimix 8 usb mixer.
If you would like to try it I can ship it to you. try if for a week or two and return it to me.
this might help you to decide what you do and don't like.
I won't be recording anything for a while yet so I'd be happy to send it to you if you think it would help you in your decision making process.
I can also send my sure sm58 mic and a CAD GXL3000 mic (good vocal mic) that you can try along with one mic cable. No freaking way i'm sending a mic stand though! IMPROVISE!
Let me know.
Phip

P.S. you have to promise not to spill beer on the thing! LOL
OH and you have to promise to make us a recording using this stuff so we can all hear how it sounds! (non negotiable)
gshredder2112  
9 May 2011 12:22 | Quote
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^^^ wow phip,how bout sendn me that tele to try out for a while,no promises about the beer thing though 0-
JustJeff  
9 May 2011 12:39 | Quote
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Do you think you could safely ship something like that? How much would it cost to ship it >.< I'm in DC. I'd probably just go buy a mic stand cause I'm gonna need one sooner or later :-P
AlexB  
9 May 2011 13:15 | Quote
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Yes! When i bought my first mics,i couldnt use them because i didnt have the stands!
gshredder2112  
9 May 2011 14:08 | Quote
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pyle PMKS3 E Pro Tripod Mic Stand with Boom Pyle
gshredder2112  
9 May 2011 14:17 | Quote
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look that up°^^^i saw one for about $11
Phip  
9 May 2011 17:40 | Quote
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Jeff,
Yeah, I can ship it no prob. I'll include a prepaid return label so you can box it up and slap the label on it when you're done. Why don't you PM me your email address so I can send you the pdf files on these goodies. You can read up on them before they arrive. Also send me your shipping address.
Phip
Phip  
9 May 2011 17:42 | Quote
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gshredder2112 says:
^^^ wow phip,how bout sendn me that tele to try out for a while,no promises about the beer thing though 0-


Hahahahahaha in your dreams GS!!!!!!!!!!!
I have some nice fender picks i can send to you though! (it's almost the same thing..........NOT)They have a cool little palm tree on them and come in dayglo colors! wheeeeeee
LOL
Phipster
gshredder2112  
9 May 2011 18:04 | Quote
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zHAHA! PHIP,way to smash a kids dreams,and here i thought She-hulks were supposed to be kind hearted,guess not *).

-gs2112
DanielM  
10 May 2011 01:31 | Quote
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Oh Jeff I just thought some products like mixers or multifx pedals come with free copies of Cubase LE, it's pretty solid to start recording with very easy to use.

Only problem is you can't buy cubase LE on it's own so I don't know if they'll be free trials available for you to try out.
Doz  
10 May 2011 20:10 | Quote
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If the main thing you're recording is acoustic guitar (or if it's your primary concern), then get a condenser first.

Whilst the 57 is great, versatile, and usually a good first microphone to buy - if you can only afford one then you really have to choose what will suit you best right now. It'll be easier to get a good sound out of a condenser, if you're recording acoustic guitar.
JustJeff  
16 May 2011 21:36 | Quote
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Pulled the trigger, bought some stuff. Will have a recording up Wednesday :)
BodomBeachTerror  
16 May 2011 21:42 | Quote
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Sweet! this fall I will probably rent/buy some recording stuff and start fooling around
JustJeff  
16 May 2011 21:44 | Quote
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Yeah, i got raped by final exams. So I bought a bunch of equipment to make me feel better :)
btimm  
16 May 2011 21:44 | Quote
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That's great news Jeff, looking forward to hearing your music Wednesday!
gshredder2112  
16 May 2011 22:16 | Quote
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Poor jeff,my finals assaulted me too,glad to hear you made some choices! good job!

\M/(*-+)
gs2112
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