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#1 2009-06-05 16:27:07

anastasiak112
Member
Registered: 2008-03-14
Posts: 60

Recording advice

Hey all.

I would like to get some of your opinions on this.

I'm looking to buy a recording device. My question is, should I buy a portable recorder that connects to my computer, where I can transfer recordings, or should I just invest directly in a microphone and record directly to the computer?

(I think I'd prefer a portable device, that way I can just carry around the handheld, rather than having to sit in front of the computer with the mic... not so portable.  However, I don't want to compromise the sound quality toooo much.)

I'd like your thoughts on this, and which recorders or mics you all would recommend.

(As for software, I have Audacity or Magix... but need the recording device first).

Thanks all.  I appreciate it!

Anastasia

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#2 2009-06-05 17:48:48

Russell_Harding
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From: A black hole in deep space
Registered: 2007-10-29
Posts: 6416
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Re: Recording advice

anastasiak this is from a topic in this forum a micro recorder made by boss it sells for around 100 or so and there are mic's you can purchase for under 50 dollars,as far as portable check this out smile
http://www.bossus.com/gear/productdetai … ductId=818


"Growing old is not for sissies"

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#3 2009-06-05 18:43:54

anastasiak112
Member
Registered: 2008-03-14
Posts: 60

Re: Recording advice

Thanks for the info.

Of course, more questions.. smile

I only intend to record acoustic guitar and voice, then put into a computer and mix (?) arrange (?) that way. (Sorry, I do not know the proper lingo).

Is this a good unit for my purpose? 

(I've got one foot out the door... ready to go buy it!!)

Thanks.
a.

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#4 2009-06-05 18:54:30

jerome.oneil
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From: Bellevue, WA
Registered: 2006-06-15
Posts: 3004
Website

Re: Recording advice

Buy both.  For around $250 you can get an Fostek MR8 and a completely awe inspiring transducer mic that will pick up gnat flatulence across the street.


Someday we'll win this thing...

www.aclosesecond.com

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#5 2009-06-05 22:37:56

geoaguiar
Honoured Member
Registered: 2007-03-24
Posts: 1108

Re: Recording advice

If you have to choose, spend more on the mic. You can always get more storage later but without a decent mic you'll be dissapointed.


I used to be disgusted; now I try to be amused.
Elvis Costello

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#6 2009-06-08 20:44:44

anastasiak112
Member
Registered: 2008-03-14
Posts: 60

Re: Recording advice

Hello again everyone.

After a weekend of shopping around, I have come out even more confused than before. smile

First off, here is what I'm looking for.

I want to record my guitar and my vocals on separate tracks, and then mix them in my computer.

I told this to the sales people that I went to see, and got a lot of lingo that I don't understand.  They said things like overdubbing and multitracks, etc.

Can someone please explain this to me. How does this multitrack work? Can I record my guitar and vocals at the same time, using the mic that comes with the unit (such as the Zoom H2, H4, Boss Micro BR), and get them on separate tracks, or do I need to use separate mics for each?  Could I record the guitar first, then record the vocals, and then put them into a software on two separate tracks? And do I absolutely need a multitrack recorder?

Also, I asked about a mic, and they told me that I have to have a good sound card on my computer if I want to record directly to my computer.

Now, keeping in mind that I don't want to spend oodles of cash on this, and I just want to really play around and see what I can do with my own tunes... can someone guide me further on this?

Thanks all.  I appreciate any advice and explanations.

Anastasia

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#7 2009-06-08 21:37:24

arkady
ambient moderator
From: England
Registered: 2006-11-23
Posts: 1910
Website

Re: Recording advice

Hi anastasiak112
To record a guitar and vocals all you need is
A computer interface this could be a multi track as said but not necessarily just a device you can plug your mic and guitar in. The interface would be plugged into your computer.
I would use Audacity software to to record each track separately though you could record both guitar and vocals together if you wanted.
Most modern computers have a sound card able to record ok.
Russ has some tutorials on Audacity software..
hope this helps
ark

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#8 2009-06-08 21:45:43

jerome.oneil
Moderator
From: Bellevue, WA
Registered: 2006-06-15
Posts: 3004
Website

Re: Recording advice

anastasiak112 wrote:

Hello again everyone.

After a weekend of shopping around, I have come out even more confused than before. smile

First off, here is what I'm looking for.

I want to record my guitar and my vocals on separate tracks, and then mix them in my computer.

http://www.activemusician.com/item--MG. … er+-+Black

That's all this thing does.  Guitar goes in one track, your vocal mic goes in the other.   Import into your favorite editing tools and mix and master until you can't stand it any more.


Someday we'll win this thing...

www.aclosesecond.com

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#9 2009-06-08 23:29:22

Phill Williams
THE MODERATE MODERATOR
From: The Land Of Song
Registered: 2007-12-10
Posts: 2444
Website

Re: Recording advice

hi anastasiak,

there's a lot of good advice above, but at the end of the day it's all down to what you want to do!
if you want good quality recordings that you wont feel embarrassed about when you play them to others [on chordie...hopefully] your best bet is to get a multi-track digital recorder, new one's can be expensive, but there are most likely used one's out there.

multi-tracking means putting different sounds onto separate tracks, without affecting the sound on each, therefore you can mix the tracks when you've finished recording to get a balanced sound, with possibly one guitar in the left channel, another guitar [or keyboard] in the right channel and your vocal track in the middle.
you can also add harmonies, bass, drums etc, all at different times and independently.

overdubbing simply means recording eg a voice over a pre-existing guitar track. with this method you cant remix at a later time, so you have to make sure the mix is correct before starting.

as already mentioned above, you can get a recorder that will interface with your pc, so you may be able to transfer your tracks onto audacity to mix down and add effects, check russels tutorial in the sticky section above.

if you really want to get into recording it can get very expensive and complicated, so beginners kit would be;

a recording device.

a good mic, [i use a beyerdynamic stage mic through an alesis mixer].

i prefer using a guitar pick-up as i always end up knocking the mic or over or under recording, or picking up the sound of people walking out side or cars passing.
some recorders have a built in metrognome, but if yours doesnt, you may want to get a drum machine to keep the beat.

that's it, your basic starter kit, or if you prefer you could down-load audacity [it's free] then get a decent mic [ensure you have a mic interface on your pc before lashing out your hard earned]
and follow russel's instructions.

happy recording, and let's hear them when their done

phill


There are two "L's" in Phill

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#10 2009-06-09 03:25:37

anastasiak112
Member
Registered: 2008-03-14
Posts: 60

Re: Recording advice

I thank you all for your help. And encouragement.

Just a few more clarifications and I'll be on my way.

First off, I play acoustic guitar, so do I understand that I will need a pick-up to attach myself to a portabe digital recorder (if I go with that option?)  And I also understand that I will need a mic AS WELL AS the recorder right?

Also, because I am a complete beginner, I am seriously looking at the Boss Micro BR, but I get the feeling this is more for electric guitarists...

I'm sure that once I have gotten the unit and read up on it, things will fall into place.. but it's just getting there that is the hard part for me. 

As for the software, I have Audacity, been using it to convert files for my boring job, but hey... now I can use it for something more interesting!

And yes, I want to "show off" my music without being embarrassed. smile  Hopefully here on Chordie! big_smile

Thanks.
Anastasia

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#11 2009-06-09 06:29:39

Russell_Harding
Alien moderator
From: A black hole in deep space
Registered: 2007-10-29
Posts: 6416
Website

Re: Recording advice

anastasia the only way to record your guitar and vocal at the same time on separate tracks is to plug into two separate inputs I can do that with my BR-8 because there is a separate input for guitar and vocal all I have to do is enable each track and the recording is automatically panned left and right to create a stereo effect but after the recording I can pan each center and adjust the eq's and add effects for each track and then pan them back and open audacity and send it the mixed recording to further edit out the start and end or fade it out and make a mp3 for uploading I will have a look at the micro and see if it has this capability and get back to you,ok I looked at it and theres only one input there is a way around this,you can mic the acoustic and sing quiet to keep it syncronized and then on another track sing the vocal to your recorded guitar this is called over dubbing and multi tracking and unless you have a electric acoustic that is the only way I can see to do what you discribe without buying something like my boss br-8 smile


"Growing old is not for sissies"

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#12 2009-07-10 15:50:14

mikeshead
Member
From: hastings uk
Registered: 2009-07-04
Posts: 29

Re: Recording advice

Hi Anastasia,
having been through the same process as you I thought it might be useful for me to add my experiences.

I am an acoustic guitarist/vocalist and for the same reasons as you I bought a Boss 900CD digitar recorder just over a year ago. It is sort of similar to your micro Br (though not quite).

As far as I am concern to Boss machines are great (especially the effects)and Im sure the micro Br will suit your needs. I would check out the operation of the unit before you buy it by looking through the instuction manual (which is on line at roland boss). Having said that the weakness of the CD 900 is the manual, it has taken me a year to be able to decifier it (it really is 5 year old dirty PANTS).

If you live in the southeast i would suggest you travel to brighton to the GAK shack (phone them up first and ask for the guy (think he is called brian) who used to work for Boss recorders. He knows everything  but everything led me through everything step by step in a none technical way. You can also ask the people at Boss who i hear are pretty good (check their website for the contact number), there is also a Roland boss forum and there are always loads of questions fromm people on the micro br which are similar to your questions.

I believe that the there is a new dedicted Mic for the micro br. I bought a sure Sm 57 which I use for recording and for performing and can confirm the combination works well.

As for playing and singing at the same time, I think you can do this on the micro Br (not certain though) but you will need to buy a mic (buy the best you can as recording quality probibly depends more on the mic than anything else (er apart from your playing of course). This was origonally my intention but I quickly (well quickly for me that is) learned that you get much better recordings by playing the tracks seperately.... although it was a bit of a learning process but had the added advatage of improving my playing no end. Dont be fooled into thinking just becuase yopur only using guitar and vocal it will be easier, in some ways its actually harder than multi instuments.

I Hope this helps somewhat and gives you a shortcut to the many  (enjoyable) hours it has taken me to get to where I am now....... which is not that far !
mikeshead

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#13 2009-07-10 15:58:04

mikeshead
Member
From: hastings uk
Registered: 2009-07-04
Posts: 29

Re: Recording advice

Ref my previous message, I assumed you were a redcoat but now note that may not be the case. The advice still holds about speaking to someone who knows their stuff but it might not be economically viable to travel from the US to the UK for a 10 minute chat.

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#14 2009-07-22 13:22:41

anastasiak112
Member
Registered: 2008-03-14
Posts: 60

Re: Recording advice

Hello all.

I finally took the plunge and picked up the Zoom H2 digital recorder.

I am blown away by the sound on this little guy. Honestly, this is the best unit I could have bought for myself.  It's simple enough to understand from the get-go, and the sound is awesome (did I say that already?)

mikeshead:  One of the things I really wanted to do was see the unit in action, but unfortunately, no one was willing to open anything up for me (understandable).  And I didn't see your message about the online manual until after I had made my purchase.  But thanks! smile

So, happy recording to everyone... and thanks (once again).

Anastasia

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#15 2009-07-22 16:05:19

Russell_Harding
Alien moderator
From: A black hole in deep space
Registered: 2007-10-29
Posts: 6416
Website

Re: Recording advice

Good luck with your new recorder and if you can let us hear some recordings smile

anastasiak112 wrote:

Hello all.

I finally took the plunge and picked up the Zoom H2 digital recorder.

I am blown away by the sound on this little guy. Honestly, this is the best unit I could have bought for myself.  It's simple enough to understand from the get-go, and the sound is awesome (did I say that already?)

mikeshead:  One of the things I really wanted to do was see the unit in action, but unfortunately, no one was willing to open anything up for me (understandable).  And I didn't see your message about the online manual until after I had made my purchase.  But thanks! smile

So, happy recording to everyone... and thanks (once again).

Anastasia


"Growing old is not for sissies"

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