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Advice on my current setup

Discussion in 'Recording' started by AndrewNZ, Apr 5, 2009.

  1. AndrewNZ

    AndrewNZ Guest

    Hey everyone, I'd like some advice/critiscism on my current setup and how it can be improved:

    -Toshiba Laptop w/ Intel dual core 2.0gHz, 4gb RAM, running Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 32bit
    -M-Audio Fast Track Pro USB interface
    -Sennheiser HD280 Headphones
    -Ableton Live Lite, which came with the interface ;)

    and here is what I'm trying to achieve:
    1. Write music entirely within the software. In the past I have programmed drums for a whole track using a freeware drum program, then moved the .wav file into my recording program and recorded guitar over top. I'd like to be able to program the drums within the recording software, so I can write/arrange as I go. Is Ableton good for that or should I look elsewhere? I'm writing progressive-ish hard/soft/ambient rock, so the ability to program and record as I go would be great.

    2. Record band practices. It doesn't need to sound great, in the past I have just set up the SM57 as a room mic and positioned it to get good overall coverage. Now that I have two inputs I will buy another mic, was planning on just getting a 58 and continuing the room mic setup as it is adequate for that I need. I can imagine there is a mic that will give a better result, can anyone recommend something within the same price range?

    I'm basically after a practical setup that runs as well as possible. I've installed the latest drivers from M-Audio, but I'm confused about the whole ASIO thing. In Audacity where I choose the device to use, it has about 6 different options. I can't see why I would ever use something other than the M-Audio ASIO driver. Why are there so many?

    Are there any freeware guitar amp simulators, or VST drum machine plugins?

    That's all for now. I'll have a lot more questions when I think of them :)
  2. jg49

    jg49 Distinguished Member

    Oct 16, 2008
    Frozen Tundra of CT
    A quick thought on #2) band recordings, you might want to consider using the same mic in xy, though the SM58/57 is pretty much the same thing. Here is a link to how to set up the mics.
    video from Audix
    You still have to find the sweet spot in the room. I think that placement, stereo imaging has more to do with it than mic choices in this price range. The SM series is hard to beat for price / performance / durability.
  3. casper

    casper Guest

    Your hardware seem fine. #1 software is really a personal preference. As far as the drums you might look at KitCore (video from Audix ) its $99 just came out from the makers of Drumcore. The advantage is high quality drum sounds and beats. The plugins all seem like drum machines to me. If you want to look at other software I would suggest dowload trial versions to see what works for you.

    Check out KVR site for VSTi guitar plug and everything. some that come to mind Freeamp, Guitar Suite, Simulanalog, Boogex, Tube driver, British Valve Custom, juicy77, Tube Baby... A paid one that just came out from Peavey called revalver. It is a really different approach. Worth checking out.

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