Hi, my name is Paul. I am electrical engineering student in the latter half of my BS degree, and happen to be a violinist. I have been recently investing some of my time on the behalf of my girlfriend’s interest to do some small on location recording. This interest of hers is driven by her graduate application (ma and phd) requirements for her degree in music composition. So I just want to get a recording that would be better than average (better than a pocket recorder). I am not looking to create a hobby for myself or to start a microphone closet. If I need a recording that requires professional experience, I will hire somebody that has it. To help pay off the equipment my girl friend intents to make audition recordings of performance majors for hire.
My recording application is all on location probably in a recital hall and will be exclusively acoustic instrumentals. I want to be able to record a number different type of classical ensembles. Some examples include choirs, orchestras, and small ensembles. Some more examples of possible solo recordings with piano accompaniment could be brass, woodwinds, strings, and operatic vocals. Some more examples of possible small ensembles could be woodwind quintets, string quartets, duo, trios, you name it. Some examples of large ensembles full orchestra, brass, choirs, maybe a large ensemble with some type of accompaniment. Fortunately for my sake I get to practice recording on some great musicians most of them are on there way to big name schools or they have already made it.
Here is a run down on my current equipment. I went with the lowest quality on the recording and mixing stage of the process to save money and in anticipation of future upgrade if necessary. And, I plan to go with the higher quality for microphones, cables, studio monitors, studio headsets, and mic stands. To avoid playing lets re-buy everything game. I purchased mics stands that I felt are portable I didn’t stick with the really expensive studio type with a counter weight on the boom arm but they are sturdy. I stuck with a computer interface recording device I know they have ups and downs one of them is low price and convenience that is what I was shooting for. Again if I were to upgrade I would stick with this route and go with some high end connect device. Here is a run down on the equipment I have so far acquired.
1. Tascam US-122 usb audio midi interface
2. Eurorack UB1202 Mixer (I know this is a loved company)
3. Two German made decent quality tripod mic stand with boom ($80)
4. High quality cables
5. Two AkG-c 1000s microphones ($100 a piece)
6. K 240 Studio Headset
I am already fully aware of the limitations of the gear I have, the c1000s was a cheap way to get started. I plan on buying three omni microphones suggestions are more than welcomed. Then I will experiment with different configurations including spaced pairs, Decca tree, Jecklin Disk to get a stereo image.
I have put a considerable amount of research into this project (searching many forums, personal contacts and the internet) I have come up with some projected plans for a more permanent solution and it would be helpful to get some more experienced opinions. It’s worth it to me to buy quality equipment because my girl friend is going to use this to jump off into electronic music and midi gear. Although I think she will fill a more classical excuse the pun compositional role. With that aside education on this topic still can not hurt. Here is my proposed future setup.
1. HD rack mount recording device
2. pre amp’s for classical music
3. omni microphones and more
4. studio monitors (near field)
5. some microphone array positioners / stands
6. various cables
7. control surface (not important right now)
I know every one of these topics have been commented on quite a bit and I already have some direction. I just wanted to lay it all out for somebody with more experience to comment on. I would like some microphone suggestions. I am now looking at Earth Works omni SROs. As price is now a selection factor this may be the next upgrade. Sytek preamp was mentioned to me I have run into a few less affordable classical pre amp solutions. I had also taken a look at the Alesis ADAT HD24. I was thinking about a pair of Mackie hr624 monitors, they adequate for my needs. Audio Engineering Associates make very nice stands and array positions also seen some akg with some nice products. I have run into some worthy retailers I would love to know more places I should buy these products from. Book suggestions would be very helpful to me here is one I may buy in the future. http://www.stereosoundbook.com/
First I was one a computer recording kick then the reliability and portability factors had been pointed out to me. I should have known this on account of all of my computer knowledge. I just think the powerful marketing schemes directed at amateur musicians soaked in a bit. I would have to say it was very difficult to get through all of the hype that this industry presents. To many creative people one place I guess. I sometimes get confused between the engineering world and the music world, but it all works out in the end. LOL The second reason why I wanted to go with this setup is for the advantage (I think it is an advantage in my case) of mixing/processing at home after the recording has been made. Please share you knowledge it will be greatly appreciated. Thank you very much.