If, like most home or project studio owners, you’ve opted to use a computer as the center of your studio, then you’ll most likely be hearing a lot about audio interfaces. For the typical home user, the sound card on your computer is just fine. Unfortunately, for a studio owner, you’ll very quickly find that the onboard sound system is inadequate for your needs. They’re typically noisy, they lack inputs and outputs you’ll most likely need and they can be inefficient in the way they translate analog and digital audio. That’s where audio interfaces come into the picture. An audio interface is a piece of dedicated hardware that you connect to your computer. In the most basic sense, the interface is the audio middleman between you (the real world) and the computer.
For the vast majority of home studio owners, the Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) software is the control center of their studio. The DAW is the program that allows you to create, record, edit and arrange audio. Picking one that fits your needs can be a confusing tornado of options, features and opinion. Which one do you chose?
How are you going to be using your studio? The answers to this question will set you on a path to figuring out what you might need to start your journey in recording. There are many, many different configurations of gear that can be assembled into a studio. Which configuration fits your needs best?
Home recording technology seems to get better and cheaper with every passing moment. What you can achieve in your spare room or home studio today was only in the realm of high-priced professional installations a dozen years ago. The problem you’ve probably already encountered is that there is a LOT of information out there. I’m going to try and break things down into manageable chunks. I’ll walk you through some concepts you should be familiar with and touch on some gear that you may or may not want to consider.
If you name any prominent rock guitarist, there’s a pretty good chance that they have played or do play a Gibson guitar. Gibson has a long history as an instrument maker and is celebrating their 120th anniversary this year. To mark the 120th year milestone, Gibson has released their 2014 models with features that help with playability and look great too.
In June of 2013, Roland announced a revamp of their popular CUBE line of guitar amplifiers. The CUBE line has been around since 1978 and has been the bread and butter of many practice and recording sessions. Randy Rhoads, Joe Walsh and Ritchie Kotzen are some of the artists who have used the amplifiers in the studio and on stage. Roland has been a solid brand in the music industry for decades. The CUBE line of amplifiers has a great history and has served many guitarists well. Of all the smaller practice amps out there, I have to admit that the offerings from the CUBE line sure look cool. From what I heard from them at NAMM, they also SOUND great too.
I’m a gear geek. I’ll admit it. When I was asked to cover NAMM for Best Buy Canada, I was on cloud nine. The show was busy and we had a lot of appointments with vendors with a focus to get a first look at the exciting gear that Best Buy will be offering you. Along the way, I HAD to take a look at the gear that I’d love to take home to my studio. Here are some of the products I saw that had me checking my bank account.
The trip to NAMM this year was packed! I thought I’d write a post of some things that personally caught my eye in a head-scratching way. My francophone counterpart, Marc-Andre and I walked dozens of kilometers over the past four days. Here’s a few of the things that made me go hmmm … (including the 24 string bass guitar shown here!)
From what I understand, Best Buy and ESP are negotiating an exclusive model of their guitars that you can only get through Best Buy. Unfortunately, I can’t share any details about that deal at this point in time. However, I took a spin through the ESP booth today and was left speechless by what I saw. There are some beautifully crafted guitars hanging on the walls throughout the booth. The folks at ESP obviously like building guitars and are very creative …. to the extreme! To placate your interest, take a look at the photos of the models we found there…
Gibson showed us some truly beautiful guitars in the Melody Maker and SG lines. They are celebrating their 120th anniversary this year and have added some really tasteful extras to their lines to celebrate. What I really found exciting was the Min-ETune feature hardware that Gibson demonstrated to us. Will this be the end of manual tuning?