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GUIDE On Building A
|What is this Guide?|
not talking about a cheap,
hissy, unprofessional sound, like we used to get with old 4 track
cassette studios. Those days are gone. With the
modern recording software (called sequencers), with their full-featured
digital mixers built right into software, you can expect
your sound to rival the big boys in
downtown. Yes. It's true! For a modest investment
microphones, preamps, audio interfaces and software you can be well on
your way. I'm going to tell you all about today's gear, tell
what you need and what you don't need, give you
gear acquisition that are tried and true, and show you where you can
save money and exactly where you should not compromise.
When you see this "King's
Icon, you know important terms are defined or F.A.Q are
What is a Recording Studio?
A Recording Studio
is a number of devices that allow you to capture different "takes" of
performances and assemble them into a finished audio product.
includes microphones, recorders, instruments, a mixer and audio
processors. With the exception of microphones, these may come
software forms as well as hardware.
What is a Sequencer?
A sequencer is a
computer application that allows you to record both digital audio and
MIDI data and blend the sounds together in it's software mixing
console. There are editing tools that let you control every aspect of
the production down to very fine details. Effects and processors of
high quality are increasingly being added to these
The modern sequencer now can fulfill many recording studio functions
that were possible only in expensive studios a decade a
Cubase 5 - Absolute cutting edge in digital audio workstations! Featuring fully integrated tools for working with loops, beats and vocals, such as LoopMash and VariAudio, Cubase 5 combines new composition features and the first VST3 convolution reverb to take musical creativity to new heights. Cubase 5 is an advanced music production system With stunning innovations and additional enhancements that boost productivity and performance.
What is a multi-track recorder
recorder is a recording device that allow you to record audio directly
to separate tracks. Once all the tracks are added, they can
mixed down to a stereo master recording. Today's digital
multi-tracks have built in effects so you can add varying amounts to
each track. The major difference between a hardware
recorder and a computer sequencer is that the sequencer can record and
edit MIDI data and the multi-track cannot.
Boss BR-1600CD 16-Track Digital Studio
The BR-1600CD Digital Recording Studio combines BOSS famous, easy-to-use interface with eight XLR inputs for recording eight tracks simultaneously. This affordable 16-track recorder comes loaded with effects for guitars and vocals; including COSM
What is MIDI?
MIDI is a form of
computer data that keyboards and computers can send back and
forth that turn on notes. You can write musical notes on a
computer screen and the data turns notes on and off on the keyboard or
sound module. Likewise you can play notes on your keyboard
the computer will "record" these commands to turn on and off
When you see this "King's Crown" Icon, you know important terms are defined or F.A.Q are answered.
don't think just because you have
the gear you will sound like a million bucks, automatically.
my friend, it does not work that way. You need to
understand music to write music and you need to know how
to use the gear
or software that you have as tools. Talent is important, and
there are many talents required to make a full production.
that doesn't mean you need to know how to play an instrument, like the
keyboard, with proficiency.
Basically, we consider the studio
itself to be a musical instrument.
Like any instrument, you get good by practicing, trying different
things, experimenting, mimicking, tweaking, mixing.... After
while, it dawns on you that making music is a craft,
is its workbench, and the studio is it's laboratory. You
the creativity, your musicality, your quest for musical
You capture your tracks then
tweak it down to a work of art.
This process is the focus of Kingbeatz studio. The
goal of the studio tweak is to create art in its
highest form of expression.
great masters of the recording
arts learned their techniques by devoting their lives creating,
capturing and tweaking sound. These secrets are hard earned,
used to be passed down from the pros to their apprentices at big
studios. You would set up microphones, sweep the floor, run
coffee and take out the trash, then, one day they let you help them at
the console. Those days are almost gone. Kingbeatz Studio is
modern day equivalent of that apprenticeship. If you read my
articles carefully you will find many secrets of audio
production. Of course, I don't know everything, no
person does. but I do know a lot. Enough to get you on your
In your recording studio, you get to have three roles--musician (as creator and performer), audio engineer, and producer. What stands between you and the masters is simply knowledge and experience. Their knowledge translates directly-- the tools in the modern software studio have the same names and functions as the classic hardware machines in a pro facility and are used in the same way. The big studios downtown have compressors, limiters, vocal processors, delays, reverbs, equalization, multi track recorders, computer automation and massive consoles that hook it all together. If you have a modern software package or hardware digital multitrack, you have all these tools too. They know exactly when and how to use EQ to clean up a track, when to use compression, the precise place to put reverb in the mix, how to record vocals, guitars, drums and how to level everything to make a stunning audio image. I am going to be your guide to acquiring all these skills.
tell you the things that you
absolutely must know for music production in a clear, simple, even
entertaining way. While much of this knowledge is technical,
avoid bogging you down with unnecessary technical details. We
not flying to Mars here (except maybe musically), so we can have a
little fun. After all, our music is something we want people
you may be running your studio
on a computer, we'll cover that too. You need to know how to
tweak your computer as well as you know how to tweak your musical
score. Then there is the matter of Understanding MIDI
and digital audio and how these work together (yes
they ARE different). This is a core concept
underpinning how the contemporary computer-based home studio works, so
we'll get to that first.
While knowledge is technical, results can be
artistic. Think of it this way, in your hands is the most powerful musical instrument human
beings ever invented.
It is so powerful
that human beings have only begun to tap into its
You can do 100 track scores with hundreds of instruments playing
together if you want. Its as vast as your musical mind and
the capability of sounding better than your store bought CDs.
you have musical inspiration and technical know-how, you have the
boundless universe of musical form at your fingertips. A
dream? Yes, but with effort and a good guide, it's a dream
Well, I have been
asked questions on building home studios for over 15 years. I have
answered thousands of emails and wrote these so I could direct people
to these answers rather than write everything out again.
That's me! I have studied music, philosophy and sociology and have a graduate degree in the latter. I've spent much of my life teaching by day and learning the recording arts by night. I've been doing recordings on computers since the first sequencers came out and as you see by the list, I have a lot to show you.
Tommy's Studio Oct 2009
Real Newbies with No Experience will want to
check out the "Fast Overview"
Best of luck in your studio enterprise!
"Music … can name the unnamable and communicate the unknowable." Leonard Bernstein (1918-90) American Composer in The Unanswered Question