I'm planning to build a basement studio in the long run, but since I won't have a basement for the next 1.5 years, there's no way I will be able to track a band. There may be some mixing contests coming along here at HR but I can improve in mixing only, and still won't have any experience in tracking when I start with the basement studio. So I was thinking, I could visit bands in their rehearsal rooms where they feel at home and comfortable, do some on-the-fly / makeshift acoustic improvements, listen to a few songs, decide on how to record and track happily away.
I have the Recording Engineer's Handbook and the Mixing Engineer's Handbook for reference (along with a few other Books like Mastering Audio: The Art and the Science, Master Handbook of Acoustics, Home Recording Studio: Build it like the Pros and the Tape Op books for the "vibe"). The ME's handbook helped me improve my mixing skills already so I guess the RE's handbook will help me get a grip on tracking, mic positioning and stuff. I read Harvey Gerst's big mic thread, and follow almost every thread that deals with some aspects of tracking and mixing here at HR. I have done some hands on tracking a few years ago with much lesser knowledge than I have now and I feel I really need to get my hands dirty now.
Now, there's some gear I already have, and some which I plan on buying next month and I'd like to know what you think of all this and if I might be missing something (gear or possible issues or whatever).
I'll record digitally and I planned on buying an M-Audio Profire 2626 which would allow me to record 8 channels simultaneously. I can connect my ancient M-Audio Octane 8 channel preamp via ADAT to it and then record 16 channels at 24bit/48kHz which is enough for me. I like the Delta 1010 I have for my desktop and I don't want to improve the mobile rig and go with a much pricier interface. A better interface will be on my list for my desktop DAW when the basement studio takes off. The Profire then goes via Firewire into my 13" MacBook Pro. The 2.53 GHz Core 2 Duo / 4GB RAM should be enough for Reaper, I think. Outputs go into the Behringer Headphone Amp for distribution and direct to my tracking headphones. The MacBook has a 240GB harddisk which I will save the projects to and then move them to a USB drive for safe storage and transfer to my mixing desktop at home. Of course I need mics and mic stands and cabling.
What I Have:
- MacBook Pro + Reaper
- M-Audio Octane 8-channel preamp
- Behringer Headphone Amp
- AKG C3000 (from the 90s I think)
- EV RE-20
- Shure SM7B
- Shure SM57
- 2x Oktava MK012 (cardioid and omni capsules)
What I (think I) need and plan on buying next month:
- M-Audio Profire 2626 (8-channel preamp/interface)
- Blue Baby Bottle
- AKG D-112
- cheap t.bone DC-1000 mic set (1 BD, 4 Tom clipons)
The bands I'll be recording will supposedly consist of acoustic drums, vocals, acoustic and electric guitar, electric bass, maybe acoustic bass, the odd synth/keyboard. I want to keep an open mind and be prepared in case I'll need to capture some brass instruments, too. Basically I want to start out somewhat metal/rock/country focused and wander into the blues/jazz territory and anything else that may be called music in the widest sense later on. Where I live, it will be easiest to find some pop rock / alternative rock group to talk to.
I don't have a giant portfolio or something so I guess my rates will be quite low or money-back if it doesn't work out. Maybe there is not much interest but maybe I can just get some practise out of it.
So, what am I missing? What didn't I think of?