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Tutorial: Tips For Making The Most of Your Home Studio

By moosers on 12/21/2009 - (Anyone)

Introduction

While those of you with smaller home studio and don't have access to larger spaces, this tutorial aims to give you some tips on how to utilize what you do have to its full potential...

Step 1

Although it might not be possible to replicate a huge studio sound without actually being in one, there are definitely a variety of ways that us as home studio owners can keep in mind to help us make the most of what we have to work with.  While I do believe that it is necessary to use larger studios to get a truly 'commercial' sounding record, this doesn't mean that you can't get great sounds with what you have.  If it isn't possible to switch between your home studio and a professional one, hopefully these tips will help you get a bigger sound with less.

Step 2

The main thing that I would tell home studio owners who are working with a limited amount of equipment would be to always get the best possible sound at the source.  This means doing everything possible to get the sound that you want before you even set up any microphones.  While I would recommend this to all engineers and studio owners, it is especially important for those with a limited amount of gear because you have less of a means of making up for it later on.  If you don't have the best mic pres or microphones to work with, getting your instruments to sound the best that they can on their own will take you a long long way...

Step 3

Since most home studio owners are on a tight budget, having versatile gear is something also that will help you out a great deal.  This means getting gear that will work in a variety of different settings and won't be limited to only being capable of being used in certain situations. For example, you should build your microphone cabinet knowing that you will most likely only be able to have a few on hand.  If you can only have two microphones I would recommend having a condenser and a dynamic on hand because each will have its own set of applications and therefore you will be able to properly record more instruments rather than just having two similar microphones...

Step 4

Being that most home studios are now based around a digital audio workspace (DAW), home studio owners can use this to their advantage by taking advantage of what the world of computers has to offer.  Now more than ever it is so easy to record music with your computer, even for those working on extremely tight budgets.  There are tons and tons of free and shareware plug-ins and software out there that are quite good.  I would recommend researching these all that you can to both save money and make your DAW as versatile as it can be.  Setting up your home studio around a computer is undoubtedly one of the best ways that you can maximize the utility of your home studio.

Step 5

Lastly, another way to maximize the equipment in your home studio is to choose quality of quantity.  Most home studio owners will not need to have equipment to record a full orchestra, so make sure that you have equipment that suits you best.  If you know that you generally only need to record one or two tracks simultaneously, I would recommend getting a top end preamp that you know you can use over and over again.  The same goes with microphones and so on and so forth.  Use your best judgment to determine what will work best for you and your situation...

Conclusion

I hope that these tips will help you to maximize your home studio, even if just a little bit.  Feel free to contact me if you have any questions...