All right gentlemen, as a long time lurker I have deduced that this is probably the best place to seek advice for my upcoming project. It will be a very piecemeal thing, since I want to create the most professional sounding, quasi-vintage studio possible for around 3000 dollars (which I dont actually have right now, but I digress. . ). Digital will come into play as well, since I like the versatility of working with audio in the digital domain, but I want the core of the studio to be analog. Basically what this boils down to is:

-the best reel to reel 8 track for around 600 dollars (ebay price) -- I am thinking either Otari or an older Tascam/Teac (ie the model 38), but i am not sure as i am rather inexperienced with this right now. Another option is the Tascam 388 'Studio 8' which is a reel to reel with a built in mixer, like a reel to reel portastudio. . I know it is 1/4" 7 1/2ips and not the most professional thing, but I have seen good reviews of it and it seems like it may be ideal in the price range on ebay (usually around 600 dollars), and indeed, it is my understanding that smaller width tracks allow for more bleed and whatnot, and I am going for a somewhat dirty rock sound (altho not so dirty as a cassette portastudio, heh). .

-pre-amps, compressors, goldchannels, whatnot -- for a while I have been considering the dbx Silver series, the 5x6 models (not the lower end ones), either a single 576 or a 566 and a 586 in conjunction which should give me two good channels of preamp and compression. . keep in mind here i am talking ebay prices, this is where i get my estimates, in used gear, I know i would have broken the 3000 dollar barrier long ago if not. . at any rate, my mind is now turning to getting some older more authentic gear. . i see interesting pre-amp cards and whatnot that are not racked on ebay all the time, i dont really have the expertise to rack these. . the basic sound I am trying to get is an early 0s british sound, if anyone is familiar with T-Rex and Tony Visconti productions, that sound in particular. . I really want at least a little 'authentic' gear from that era (that would be usable in a modern project studio, with XLRs and whatnot(how many times have i said 'whatnot' now, hehe)). . but I want to keep the price at around 5-600 dollars max (per piece of gear).

-microphones -- I already have a nice CAD E-350 that is a good multipurpose thing, I am thinking of augmenting with an AKG Solidtube, perhaps. . and of course getting a couple of SM-58s. . I think more of the money would be better spent in the pre-amp stage for the coloration and character I'm seeking (see above), as long as I have a few good all around mics. .

-other - I already have a nice solid-state echoplex I plan to integrate, I am thinking about some other nice tape echos too, lots of exotic german things and Binsons, etc, pop up on ebay now and then for not too bad prices (as long as it isnt a space echo, which usually get way overpriced and arent that great anyways). .

-digital - I plan to augment this with a good computer setup with a digital 8 track interface (I am thinking the Aardvark 8 channel interface right now), I have digital experience (albeit with a low end gadget labs 4 channel thing), my ultimate idea is to be able to record the basic tracks through the outboard gear onto the analog 8 track, and then dump the tracks into PC for further manipulation

So anyways. . Im really just looking to get the analog portion up and running as fast as possible. . these are my ideas. . but i am on a very tight budget, and this will take a while, i want to limit myself to 2000 dollars for the analog portion, but am not averse to used gear (I am an avid e-bayer). .

Thanks,
Justin

-and of course, nice cables, power conditioning (the power around here is fairly stable, I just want to eliminate hum and the such. . )