Advice buying gear

Discussion in 'Mixing & Song Critique' started by Johntron512, Sep 4, 2005.

  1. Johntron512

    Johntron512 Guest

    I have a $4500 budget (less would be better).

    I own:
    AT4033 mic
    US122 Preamp
    M-Audio Nova Mic
    SM57 Mic
    Alesis 30-band eq
    behringer compressor/limiter
    CS DTT3500 computer speakers
    Audigy Platinum Sound card
    (I also own various guitars and equipment, but I'm only interested in my recording setup being upgraded/completed)

    I want:
    A new preamp
    Studio Monitors
    High-Quality Headphones?
    and more...

    What I want your opinion on is what gear should I purchase with this budget to record acoustic guitar, vocals for singer/songwriter type stuff and on the other hand, hip hop vocals/singing.

    I am looking at Avalon or Portico for a pre and maybe some ebay NS10s...

    Feel free to get specific (down to the mic cords if you like)
  2. Kev

    Kev Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 2001
    Studio Monitors and the Amp to go with them

    High-Quality Headphones and the Amp to go with them

    A device to help monitor and switch your signals

    A device to help VISUALLY monitor your signals

    once that is sorted ... then look to the other stuff
    the NS10's are OK but I think you should have a second option as well
  3. Digger

    Digger Guest

    I would agree on the monitor front. I own a pair of Dynaudio BM6A's ($1400-1500 on Ebay) and I am very happy. Genelec 1031A's ($2000-$2200 on Ebay) are fairly standard in the studio world. Check around the forums and then go out and listen BEFORE buying.

    As far as headphones are concerned I would stick within the realm of Sennheisers or AKG's - try to determine your needs - will you need isolation? If so make sure you buy a close design VS open or Semi open - When I first started I bought a couple of AKG KS240's which are great headphones but not ideal for the applications I needed. As a drummer I ended up buying Remote Audio HN7506's which I love but most people can't stand (very tight fitting). I don't believe you need to spend a lot of money on headphone systems especially if you are recording by yourself - you will have a tonne of options if you budget about $200

    Mic Pres - depends on what you are recording and how much flexibility you might want. If you are recoriding to a DAW and recording a lot of direct Electronic instruments I would take a look at some nice tube amps to 'warm' things up a bit. A Universal 2-610 is great stereo mic pre. Avalon is nice as well. Cucco is a big fan of 2BA-221 by Summit and although I have never used one I like the concept enough that I would be apt to try one in your situation. The unit gives you a choice between Solid State and Tube settings and they are priced right ($400 - $500 on Ebay). You may also want to consider a Brick (Groove Tubes) as well, this is a really high value, tube based mic pre for under $400. In a perfect world starting out I would look for a stereo pair Tube amp (like the 2-610) and a stereo pair of clean pre amp channels (like a Grace 201) but that would outstrip your budget.

    If you are recording vocals I would also consider a good tube based condensor vocal mic. In your price range I would consider; Charter Oak (newer company outstadning mics), Neumann M147 (you can find great deals of these on Ebay) and Rode Classic II (I love this mic - you can find them on Ebay for about $1100 to $1300). You may also want to consider a couple of extra dynamic mics as well, I would be most apt to start with an MD-421, which can be used on anything from Guitars, to bass to drums. Once you have decided on some mics make sure you audition them first.

    Metering - use your ears and your DAW. I think they are unneccesary.

    If they were my ears, which they are not, I would try / buy the following;

    BM6A's - $1600
    Charter Oak SA538 - $1000
    Headphones (depending on your needs) - Open Design KS240, Closed Design Sennheiser HD280 (Budget $89/can)
    Mic Pre's (assuming they were as good as CUCCO says) Summit Audio 2BA-221 x 2 ($1100)
    Sennheiser MD421 ($279)
    That still give you a little dough for some extras, I would reccomend a UAD card which has some great plugs. Hope that helps, Cheers!

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