Monday, April 26, 2010

How to Record Your Band for Under $300

What you need!

You are going to first need a band.

Location: You are going to need someplace to record it. A house or an apartment will do just fine. If you are in a house don’t do it in the unfinished basement or the garage. These two places normally have way to much natural reverb. If you can, record in a carpeted living room.

Interface: First you will need a digital interface to connect to your computer . If you don’t have a computer, welcome t the 20th century… and how are you reading this? You should buy a used interface with 4 inputs.

Audio Program: If you have a computer the next step is to download Audacity. It is the best free multi track recorder for your computer. You can find the download at

Mics: Next you will need a few mic. Get one USED Shure sm57s and two NEW MXL 990s. This set up will allow you to record your drums and all vocals and guitars/bass.


Order: You will need to record each instrument sepertely. Start with Drums, then bass, then guitar, last vocals. The guitar/bass order can be changed if needed but if at all possible drumds should be done first.

Mic Placement:
Drums: put one sm57 under the snare drum pointing up This mics only real purpose is to record the snare. The other two MXLs will be spread out over the set. Place one over the high hat about 2 feet over the high hat pointing down to between the high hat an dfirst cymbal. Place the other MXL almost right on top of the floor tom pointing up ever so slightly toward the other toms.

Guitar: use the sm57 up super close/ touching the amp. Place it on the corner of the speaker but angle it towards the center of the amp.

Bass: Use the SM57 as described above. Also run a direct line from your bass amp to the recording.

Voclas: Use the MXL 990. make sure you have a pop filer placed in front of the mic. If you don’t have one; a worn out sock, cut in half can be a nice do it yourself… but wash it first.

When mixing put the vocals panned to the center. Pan the snare drum slightly off to the right or left. Pan one MXL mic on the drums 70% left, the other 70% right. Bass, panned left or right a little; opposite of the snare. Guitar, copy the track twice in Audacity, move the track off time by Hundreths of a second. Pan one hard left one hard right.

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