Starting a Home Studio

Lately I’ve been reading a lot of discussions online about where to start when it comes to creatingproduction music on your own. These days, it’s much easier and quite affordable to set up your own home studio. Here I’ll discuss a few basic concepts you’ll need to consider if you’re going to put together your own studio. Let’s start with the first requirement:

Space – You’re going to need a dedicated space to record and mix your projects, and whether it’s your garage, den, or bedroom it will need to be sufficiently large enough to set up your equipment and instruments. Consider how you are going to work with your space. Do you have the room and resources to establish a control room and studio proper? You’ll also need to experiment with your space to see how it responds acoustically and consider treatments such as diffusers, panels, and bass traps. Work with what you’ve got.

Computer – Assuming you’re not an analog purist, you’ll need a decent machine to work with if you want to set up a home studio. You’ll need a computer with good processor speed, extra RAM, and plenty of hard drive space. Most DAWs can be very resource intensive when you’re mixing and recording, so you’ll need something that can handle the workload. I won’t get into the PC vs Mac debate, but there are some DAW programs that are platform specific so you’ll need to figure out what works best for you. Along with the computer, you’ll need to acquire some kind of interface to work with your hardware. There are many affordable options on the marketplace, such as USB pre-amps and other similar products. Again, you’ll need to see what works best for you.

Microphones – Microphones are arguably the most important element in the process of recording. They can also be the most expensive. While it is easy to go overboard and spend a fortune on a microphone collection, there is a wide selection of affordable microphones available on the market. If you’re just starting out, it’s a good idea to pick up a few mics with multiple applications. Invest in a pair of large diaphragm condensers and several dynamic mics to cover the basics. As you go on, you can always flesh out your collection with unique microphones.

Monitors – You’ll need an accurate set of studio monitors if you plan on producing quality recordings. There are many brands and sizes, so again you need to look at what you can afford and what will work best in your studio. When you obtain a nice set of speakers, it is important to properly mount them and place them in an acoustically desirable location.

Accessories – On top of all the other equipment, you’ll need many accessories to run a decent studio. You’re going to need mic stands, cables, cables, and more cables. Don’t skimp on cables.