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  1. #1

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    My first attempt as using Digital Work Stations (DAW) was rough. I learned a lot but wasted much valuable time. I wanted to start a list for you guys that are older like me, so you can start out right. Maybe you folks can add to it.

    1) Make sure your computer meets the minimum storage requirements. I tried to use Ableton Live to record a song and it kept crashing. Turns out it needed minimum 4.00 GB RAM and my computer is just under that.

    2) Make sure you choose the correct inputs and outputs for the DAW. Usually, this can be done by clicking on "Options" and then going to "Preferences" and then you choose where the signal is coming from.

    3) With the recording programs (again, called DAW) I am using (Ableton Live 9 and Reaper) and most others, you will need to buy an Audio Interface Unit. You plug your guitar into it, and then it sends a usable signal to your DAW so you can record.

    4) You will have to have a good internet signal because you will be downloading this programs directly into your computer (Unless you go out and buy it in Disk form if it is available in the medium). I spent 3 hours downloading the different programs, and I had to create accounts with four different companies to do it.

    5) You must know the difference between a program that you use to record, such as Pro Tools, Ableton Live, and Reaper, and a program that you use to create effects, such as EZMix 2, Guitar Rig, and I-Rig. I bought EZMix 2 thinking I could record with it (silly me).

    Maybe you can add some other follies to this list?
    Last edited by AlsoRan; 11-27-2016 at 08:07 PM. Reason: changed 400 to 4.00

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  3. #2

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    i currently use a laptop's built in mic. to record my playing - and i use the same laptop to play the backing tracks i'm using

    so i need advice and help - so thanks for this ar!

    (but i don't want to put any valuable time into it - which is why i'm still using this method)

  4. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Groyniad View Post
    i currently use a laptop's built in mic. to record my playing - and i use the same laptop to play the backing tracks i'm using

    so i need advice and help - so thanks for this ar!

    (but i don't want to put any valuable time into it - which is why i'm still using this method)
    You are welcome.

    There is one heck of a learning curve to this home recording stuff. I learned so much in the last few days but still have a ways to go.

    The internet is a big help, especially Youtube but for an older dog like me, it is so painful going it alone - but also rewarding.

    We will see what others might add.

  5. #4

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    Here is another little tidbit.

    6) Ableton Live, and some of these other recording programs require so much RAM memory that I cannot use them. I have found that for $60.00, Reaper works with my computer's RAM limitations.

    7) RAM is basically working memory. Kind of like what a computer can keep in its head all at one time. While ROM is memory that is stored away and has to be recalled.

    8) Your DAWs can have their own built in effects (reverb, types of distortion, delay, etc...) or it can use some effects you create from programs like EZmix2 and I-Rig.

    9) With Reaper, you will download a bunch of stuff that will be contained in a folder called "Reaper." Same with Ableton and others. Within that folder, are many other little folders, half of which I don't know what they are.

    10) The various effects all seem to have the suffix ".dll" in their name. For example, you might find one that is calle "reverb1.dll" or "ambient room.dll" These are called "PlugIns" and for your DAW to be able to utilize them, they have to be copied and pasted into a little folder. I put my effects, including the EZMix 2, into a folder called "VST Plugins." After much reading, I was able to do this and Reaper was able to use the effects that I put in there.

    11) Options>Preferences>Inputs, for most programs takes you to the choice of inputs and channels. I choice the focusrite Scarlet 2i4, but I did not realized that I had needed to choose channel 2 instead of leaving it in channel 1. This was because plugged my guitar into channel 2 of the Scarlett Audio Interface Units inputs (I have two plug in holes available, channel 1 and channel 2).

    12) Finally, at least with my Audio Interface Unit, I needed to go to focusrite and download the "ASIO" driver because I have Windows running on my computer. You also have to choose this driver as part of your "preferences." Mac computers have some other driver.

    13) The reason I had to download the ASIO driver first, BEFORE I plugged in the USB cable from my audio interface unit (the focusrite Scarlet 2i4) was because when I plugged in the unit first, the computer analyzed it and ASSIGNED its own driver, which of course was wrong. So download the driver first, and when you plug your unit it, the computer will find it and assign it. I had hell getting the computer to reassign the correct driver (ASIO) after the fact.

  6. #5
    I did all of my experimenting about 10 or 15 years ago and have really slacked off, in more recent years. I'm mainly doing some basic stuff with Reaper now and with some video software. I'm using Sony Vegas and it's built in fx. Really don't want to get into multiple pieces of software to do one thing if I can help it.

    Anyway, my main problems back in my beginning days were with the multiple layers of software and hardware. Back then, I called customer support for one thing and they would say "it's the hardware". Called the hardware company and... "it's the software". Then, once the software was old enough, you worldn't have tech-support anymore.

    Things are a little different now, in mostly good ways. Rather than technical reading, you can get the answer to most things with a YouTube video. Much more straightforward than digging into technical reading.

    I guess the one thing I would point out to anyone who's not very tech savvy in the first place is this: It might be well worth doing a little research on YouTube videos , support , online forums etc. to find software platforms and hardware device combinations which are the most supported.

    I would assume that something like a simple Scarlet interface running into Reaper, for example, would be a common enough set-up to provide a lot of online instruction/videos etc. Once you get into multiple software/hardware combinations , it gets much more complicated to solve simple problems. Sometimes there's great benefit to finding one piece of software that will do the job which would otherwise require two separate ones. Not always but sometimes.

    I think this is the appeal to using things like iPads. You sacrifice a little on certain things, but it's one piece of hardware and all the software is integrated. I don't have one , but I wonder if that's more of the thing nowadays anyway?

    My two cents.
    Last edited by matt.guitarteacher; 11-27-2016 at 04:01 PM.

  7. #6

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    Matt, you make some very good points, again.

    I want to add that many see Reaper as a good entry into the world of home recording using DAWs. Many of the features in Reaper are also in the more expensive DAWs.

    I think the home version of Reaper is $60.00 or so. I think there is a professional version in which they want more but I am not sure.

    Also, you get a 60-day free trial before you buy it. I would say to go ahead and purchase your guitar's audio interface unit first so you can start experimenting from day 1.

  8. #7

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    Don't add so much effing reverb/delay. EVERYBODY adds way too much effing reverb/delay. Always. Do you ever hear that much on a professional recording? Never.

  9. #8

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    The list continued:

    14) You can use these effects programs, like EZMix 2 (which I believe has a 7-day free trial), with your handheld audio recorders like the Boss BR-600, the Tascom products, and the Boss MicroBR. This takes multiple pieces of equipment, but it might get you a nice sound. I love the Jazz presets and choices in the EZMix 2.

    15) Now is the time to buy. I have seen these computer programs go at great discounts. One rather complicated (at least in my opinion) drumming program called Superior Drummer 2 from Toontrack, is 70% off right now. ($105.00). I might graduate to it next year but for now, I have EZdrummer 2 already. Deals are everywhere.

    16) I have not tried it yet, but once I create a drum track, I can bring it (import it) into my Reaper program for use.

    17) MIDI is hard for me to describe but I have learned that is has its own input and output cables and can be used to control the features in a music software program. For example, Ableton makes a little keyboard that you use to create music in an associated computer program. For example, you press a key on the keyboard, and the computer sees it as playing a kickdrum, or maybe the middle C pitch.

  10. #9

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    400GB RAM? I haven't seen a computer with that much. Perhaps you meant MB instead?

  11. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    1) Make sure your computer meets the minimum storage requirements. I tried to use Ableton Live to record a song and it kept crashing. Turns out it needed minimum 400 GB RAM and my computer is just under that.
    I'm pretty sure there is no such computer motherboard that can support that much RAM. Maybe you meant 4gb? 400mb? 4gb of RAM is sufficient for most programs out there on the market unless maybe your doing video editing. I have 16gb on my system and that is more than enough for everything I've ever run.

    Here is a random beginner home recording mistake that I made which gave me a massive headache --- record at the same frequency that your soundcard is set to. For example by default, my soundcard is set to 48000hz. I once tried to record at 44000hz or something like that, and each track in the recording was completely out of synch with one another...it took me quite a while to figure it out.

  12. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Guitarzen View Post
    I'm pretty sure there is no such computer motherboard that can support that much RAM. Maybe you meant 4gb? 400mb? 4gb of RAM is sufficient for most programs out there on the market unless maybe your doing video editing. I have 16gb on my system and that is more than enough for everything I've ever run.

    Here is a random beginner home recording mistake that I made which gave me a massive headache --- record at the same frequency that your soundcard is set to. For example by default, my soundcard is set to 48000hz. I once tried to record at 44000hz or something like that, and each track in the recording was completely out of synch with one another...it took me quite a while to figure it out.

    Thanks for pointing out the mistake. I have corrected it accordingly! Is should have read 4.00 GB, and I think mine said "3.63 Usable." So I did not even have the necessary RAM to begin with.

    In Ableton, the lack of RAM made the CPU Overload message come on. The CPU, or Central Processing Unit, to my understanding is the work the computer is doing. Ableton overloaded my little 3.63 of RAM. When you are recording a guitar and using the computer's effects program, apparently it is a big drain.

    Please point out any other mistakes I might have made so no one gets mislead.
    Last edited by AlsoRan; 11-27-2016 at 09:31 PM.

  13. #12

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    Mistake #1 to consider is .. going the DAW way if your goal is just to record your practicing.

    Using a DAW definitely requires a non negligible learning process, time and money investment, specially if you want to make good quality recording. And a lot more if you wish to create your own backtracks.

    Small mobile recorders like Zoom ones make it simpler, costing less than a laptop and an audio interface. Audio quality is good enough for practicing, and they can also be used to record band rehearsals or live events.

    Backtrack can be played to appropriate external speakers, or into your amp speaker. Then you record it while playing guitar plugged in into your amp. You loose the ability to adjust levels later on, but with a bit of practice you quickly know what is OK.

    Some loopers can also be used the same way, backtracks loaded into them before hand.
    Perfection is in the Details, but Perfection isn't a Detail (Leonardo da Vinci)

  14. #13

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    I just record into an iPad - you need a guitar interface (I use the Line6 sonic port) but it allows easy multitracking, and Garageband lets you do a lot of things. I can't really record acoustic guitar to the iPad though, I would probably need another interface for a mic.

    Or I record direct into a little KORG SOS recorder, it allows limited multitracking i.e. 2 or 3 tracks is simple to do. I can take a line out from my amp into it, if I want. The Korg also does a reasonable job recording acoustic guitar via its onboard mic. It also records off the amp speaker ok, though I haven't done this much.

    In both cases I can pre-load it with a WAV file from BIAB or similar to create a backing track if I need it.

    For final mixing/editing, adding reverb etc. I just export all the files into Audacity on my PC (each track is kept separate).

  15. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop View Post
    I just record into an iPad - you need a guitar interface (I use the Line6 sonic port) but it allows easy multitracking, and Garageband lets you do a lot of things. I can't really record acoustic guitar to the iPad though, I would probably need another interface for a mic.

    Or I record direct into a little KORG SOS recorder, it allows limited multitracking i.e. 2 or 3 tracks is simple to do. I can take a line out from my amp into it, if I want. The Korg also does a reasonable job recording acoustic guitar via its onboard mic. It also records off the amp speaker ok, though I haven't done this much.

    In both cases I can pre-load it with a WAV file from BIAB or similar to create a backing track if I need it.

    For final mixing/editing, adding reverb etc. I just export all the files into Audacity on my PC (each track is kept separate).
    Grahambop,
    Do you use the Audicity program that came with BIAB?

  16. #15

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    I went on Amazon and looked at the cost of laptops that have 6GB of RAM. All but one was well over $300.00. I was considering buying a new laptop just for music. I cannot justify the expense.
    Last edited by AlsoRan; 11-28-2016 at 12:09 PM. Reason: Found some cheaper ones

  17. #16

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    Zoom H2 recorders are around $ 150 ... They even have a line input to which you can connect the line out of your amp if it's got one.
    Perfection is in the Details, but Perfection isn't a Detail (Leonardo da Vinci)

  18. #17

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    The first step to avoid regrets in putting a recording system together is to list all the objectives you have for recording and from that derive some minimal requirements for equipment and software. If you just want to capture rehearsals keep something like a Zoom H2N in your gear bag and you're set. Portability, rapid setup, and ease of use are critical requirement for me, so a PC setup wouldn't be useful. PCs or laptops also seem like a lot of trouble to set up and troubleshoot, especially if they are used for other things and not dedicated to the studio.
    But I'm also interested in a more portable setup for recording up to 4 tracks. I'm considering something like the Zoom H6 for that.
    Last edited by KirkP; 11-28-2016 at 01:09 PM.

  19. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    Grahambop,
    Do you use the Audicity program that came with BIAB?
    No, my BIAB is several years old, I don't think it came with anything. I just downloaded Audacity from the web and have kept it reasonably up to date since. For reverb I use a VST plugin from Kjaerhuis. There are loads of things like that available for it on the web.

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by KirkP View Post
    The first step to avoid regrets in putting a recording system together is to list all the objectives you have for recording and from that derive some minimal requirements for equipment and software. If you just want to capture rehearsals keep something like a Zoom H2N in your gear bag and you're set. Portability, rapid setup, and ease of use are critical requirement for me, so a PC setup wouldn't be useful. PCs or laptops also seem like a lot of trouble to set up and troubleshoot, especially if they are used for other things and not dedicated to the studio.
    But I'm also interested in a more portable setup for recording up to 4 tracks. I'm considering something like the Zoom H6 for that.
    Assessing one's needs, as you and Matt said, is probably the most important part of the process. I used the Boss MicroBR and the Boss BR600 to record for years. But I wanted to be able to create good custom drum tracks and I also wanted better sound. These devices could only give me so much but are handy for most of my recording needs.

    For the short term, I am recording my drum track on the Boss BR-600. I will then connect my computer to the BR-600 and will use the effects from that set up.

    I can also use the effects from the EZ Mix 2 program on my computer for vocals and bass, and I can record keyboards directly into the BR-600. The BR-600 has six tracks to work with and you can combine tracks to free yourself up for adding more tracks.

    As far as using the computer recording programs, the geeky nerd in me is driving that quest as much as need - maybe more.

  21. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    I went on Amazon and looked at the cost of laptops that have 6GB of RAM. All but one was well over $300.00. I was considering buying a new laptop just for music. I cannot justify the expense.
    RAM is fairly easily upgraded (on desktop, maybe not as easy on laptop). You just need to find out what type of RAM and how much of it your motherboard supports. The annoying thing about RAM is it may or may not be additive to what you already have. For example, if you have 4 RAM slots filled with 1gig RAM sticks, you might have to throw those away and purchase say 2 x 4gig sticks (or 4 x 2gig) in order to double your RAM. RAM can be a little finicky as well...like putting 2 different types of RAM can cause problems. I had a PC one time and if I used 2 sticks of RAM (instead of 4) I had to put them in slots 1 & 3, or my computer would crash in any other configuration, i.e. slots 1 & 2, or 2 & 4 would crash my system! The other thing that is critical with RAM is make sure you get the right speed. I put together a brand new system a few years back and accidentally purchased some RAM with a speed that my CPU did not support. My brand new system was getting the blue screen of death 10x a day (it still ran for an hour or two at a time) for 2 months before I finally figured out I had the wrong speed of RAM.

    Anyways, don't let me scare you, as long as you look up your motherboard & cpu and what RAM they support, it should be easy. However, if your using a laptop it might not be. My cousin was running out of memory on his laptop and I suggested to him he should get some more RAM. But then we watched a YT video on how to change RAM on a laptop...and it was ridiculous...you had to dismantle the entire thing into about a dozen pieces in order to get to the RAM (with a desktop you may literally be able to just reach in, yank out the old and pop in the new in about 30 seconds, just make sure you pop the release lever first ;o)

  22. #21

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    Creating good drum tracks is a lot of work, I just spent the whole day creating one and I probably need another day to polish it. Ended up with a headache !

    Things are relatively quick for relatively simple tunes when one can use existing loops, audio or MIDI (That can be found, but that implies some more expenses). Unfortunately this drum track of today is for the Mr Kenyatta tune, a mix of Latin and Swing feel, plus lots of awkward fillins ...
    Perfection is in the Details, but Perfection isn't a Detail (Leonardo da Vinci)

  23. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Guitarzen View Post
    RAM is fairly easily upgraded (on desktop, maybe not as easy on laptop). You just need to find out what type of RAM and how much of it your motherboard supports. The annoying thing about RAM is it may or may not be additive to what you already have. For example, if you have 4 RAM slots filled with 1gig RAM sticks, you might have to throw those away and purchase say 2 x 4gig sticks (or 4 x 2gig) in order to double your RAM. RAM can be a little finicky as well...like putting 2 different types of RAM can cause problems. I had a PC one time and if I used 2 sticks of RAM (instead of 4) I had to put them in slots 1 & 3, or my computer would crash in any other configuration, i.e. slots 1 & 2, or 2 & 4 would crash my system! The other thing that is critical with RAM is make sure you get the right speed. I put together a brand new system a few years back and accidentally purchased some RAM with a speed that my CPU did not support. My brand new system was getting the blue screen of death 10x a day (it still ran for an hour or two at a time) for 2 months before I finally figured out I had the wrong speed of RAM.

    Anyways, don't let me scare you, as long as you look up your motherboard & cpu and what RAM they support, it should be easy. However, if your using a laptop it might not be. My cousin was running out of memory on his laptop and I suggested to him he should get some more RAM. But then we watched a YT video on how to change RAM on a laptop...and it was ridiculous...you had to dismantle the entire thing into about a dozen pieces in order to get to the RAM (with a desktop you may literally be able to just reach in, yank out the old and pop in the new in about 30 seconds, just make sure you pop the release lever first ;o)
    Good information!

    By the way, I have a computer geek buddy who agrees fully with your second paragraph. He built a couple of nice desktops for me a couple of years ago. He said with respect to RAM, laptops are so much harder to work with.

    I will eventually bite the bullet and just spend more to get the necessary system requirements, should I have that need.

  24. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by mhch View Post
    Creating good drum tracks is a lot of work, I just spent the whole day creating one and I probably need another day to polish it. Ended up with a headache !

    Things are relatively quick for relatively simple tunes when one can use existing loops, audio or MIDI (That can be found, but that implies some more expenses). Unfortunately this drum track of today is for the Mr Kenyatta tune, a mix of Latin and Swing feel, plus lots of awkward fillins ...
    You are NOT kidding about the work it takes!

    That's why I went with drumming software that was a little on the easier side to work with. I have some nice drum tracks that I have created in only an hour or so of work. I use EZDrummer 2. I am sure there are other similar ones.

    The only thing I have not figured out yet is how to create my own custom grooves to cut and paste into my original songs. This is on my to-do list for the near future.
    Last edited by AlsoRan; 11-29-2016 at 09:06 AM. Reason: inserted "NOT" to correct my error

  25. #24

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    Regarding RAM, I've always used the Crucial system scanner to select the correct RAM, and have never had a problem with their products. The price is right too. As a rule of thumb, I try to have at least double the RAM that my apps list as a minimum.
    Also, try to minimize the number of processes running in the background when you are recording since they take memory and can add to latency.
    Crucial.com
    Last edited by KirkP; 11-28-2016 at 09:47 PM.

  26. #25

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    Here is an example of a help video for a DAW, in this case, the Ableton Live 9 program. He even uses the same audio interface that I have.

    I followed this, and the other related videos step-by-step. But sound would come and go, and after awhile I finally figured out the problem with the lack of RAM (after a couple of hours of screwing with it! ).

    Anyway, enough self-pity and hand-wringing about what could have been, here is part 3 of the Abelton video series:




    Here is a video about the CPU indicator that perplexed me:


  27. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlsoRan View Post
    You are kidding about the work it takes!

    That's why I went with drumming software that was a little on the easier side to work with. I have some nice drum tracks that I have created in only an hour or so of work. I use EZDrummer 2. I am sure there are other similar ones.

    The only thing I have not figured out yet is how to create my own custom grooves to cut and paste into my original songs. This is on my to-do list for the near future.
    I also use EZDrummer 2, Addictive Drums 2, StraightAhead Jazz Drums/Brushes/Mallets. Each has a set of available grooves, which are OK for simple music pieces (e.g. same style all along). I created many drums track this way, but Mr Kenyatta is a good example of a tune which is hard to deal with this way. Also brush sweep samples aren't always available or even good if available (Addictive Drums and Straight Ahead are the best ones in my opinion)

    Creating custom grooves requires a good MIDI editor combined with a notation editor: I've been using Ableton for years, but its MIDI editor isn't the best in this respect. Reaper is. I didn't use other DAW, except a short attempt at Cubase which I quickly dropped in favor of Reaper. Notation editors are constrainted at entering hits on typical bar subdivisions, MIDI editors, specially Ableton, can do that too but in a very akward manner, and it's too easy to inadvertently move or modify a hit. plus they also lack several useful notation features like section repeat, metric modulation (straight, swing, etc ..). The best way is to create groove sections using a notation editor, and later slightly adjust MIDI parameters using the MIDI view of the hits, here and there.
    Perfection is in the Details, but Perfection isn't a Detail (Leonardo da Vinci)

  28. #27

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    Search forum for Fep's posts on subject, also on one other forum he had a thread Why Your Recordings Suck, or similar, Google will place it near the top.

    Re RAM, to utilize more than 3gb you must have 64 bit OS. If you have 64 bit OS chances are old hardware won't have drivers. I see you are in a buying mode, so old hardware is probably not an issue, but anyway.
    Ammount of RAM should not have influence on CPU overload. It's likely your latency settings are too low. Give your CPU some more time. Make sure power saving options in OS are turned off. If CPU is regularly switching from 50% to 75% to 100%, you will get glitches and it will signal overload.

    Couple of days ago I made this with Iphone4, freeware 4 track and analog iRig. All the rest hardware you see is either not essential, or not used at all. I'm showing signal path, from guitar to headphones ...





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    Last edited by Vladan; 11-29-2016 at 04:06 AM.
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  29. #28
    The biggest beginner mistake that I did was trying to mix/master myself when the final thing had to be "ok for public".
    Record, give the tracks to someone who actually does this for a living. Well, unless the whole thing is a hobby I guess..

  30. #29

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    Hmm my contribution would be to learn a DAW as economically as you can before spending the big bucks on the full packages. Seek out the free or intro editions and try to make a complete recording or complete song first. It doesn't really matter what DAW, they are all more or less the same. Before I get scolded for saying that, what I mean is that they're the same like different types of motorcycles are the same. Going from a scooter to a dirt bike requires some work, but if you know how to ride a 2-wheeled vehicle you're already WAY ahead of the game

    My other bit of advice is more when you get down in the weeds of recording, and have laid down some tracks. During the mixing process, EQ EQ EQ! There are so many frequencies that you can cut that will muddy up your mix. This has made the biggest difference for me in producing quality recordings. There are entire books on the subject, but I would say that you can cut way more off the top and/or bottom than you think, and the integrity of your individual sounds will remain intact.

  31. #30

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    Yeah some info on how to begin would be great. Eg have Garage band, think I have a guitar input thingy somewhere. How do I get a jazz drum loop or 3 that can be edited eg Maybe SessionBand as you can insert fills etc, can it be input into garage band and bass and horns without big bucks?


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  32. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by gggomez View Post
    Yeah some info on how to begin would be great. Eg have Garage band, think I have a guitar input thingy somewhere. How do I get a jazz drum loop or 3 that can be edited eg Maybe SessionBand as you can insert fills etc, can it be input into garage band and bass and horns without big bucks?
    I have managed to import Sessionband loops into Garageband on my iPad.

    The only thing that was a bit fiddly was that the Sessionband audio export left a tiny bit of blank audio at the beginning of the loop, which made the Garageband loop sound a little bit lop-sided so to speak. So I magnified the audio sample inside Garageband to the maximum size (by dragging it left and right simultaneously) and then chopped the front off it.

    Bear in mind if you quantise the loop by setting bar length in Garageband first e.g. 32 bars, then for this scenario it is better to set to 33 bars, import the Sessionband, trim it, then reset to 32 bars. Otherwise you will lose a bit of audio off the end of the Sessionband loop when you import it! (because you need a bit of trailing space to allow for the unwanted bit of audio at the beginning.)

    Nothing is simple!

  33. #32

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    Some other software tools have similar audio export problems as exposed by Grahambop, Sibelius for instance, i.e. the exported audio isn't well adjusted with the music, which makes it difficult to properly import into a DAW and synchronise with the other tracks (possibly exported from other tools as well). This may have been fixed in most recent versions of Sibelius (?).

    I ended up always creating two bars of count-in with played notes or hits at 1-2-1234 (in 4/4) at the beginning of every software created tracks, whatever the tool is, as well as an extra bar at its end, with a note or hit at beat 1 of it. This way one can perfectly align all exported then imported tracks (assuming the export tool is correct with respect with the tempo. Surprisingly there might be small differences, may be due to rounding effects. The extra notes can then help with warping the tracks to the DAW tempo in this case).
    Perfection is in the Details, but Perfection isn't a Detail (Leonardo da Vinci)

  34. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by mhch View Post
    Creating good drum tracks is a lot of work, I just spent the whole day creating one and I probably need another day to polish it. Ended up with a headache !

    Things are relatively quick for relatively simple tunes when one can use existing loops, audio or MIDI (That can be found, but that implies some more expenses). Unfortunately this drum track of today is for the Mr Kenyatta tune, a mix of Latin and Swing feel, plus lots of awkward fillins ...
    Are you actually creating drum tracks or trying to copy the recording? I always ask myself "what's actually necessary to get this across?" when I'm creating tracks for public use. The groove is first, any fills are based on the structure, and about 100% of the gigs one might use tracks on have nobody listening critically. But I'm not familiar with that tune, so I may be entirely irrelevant.

  35. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by ronjazz View Post
    Are you actually creating drum tracks or trying to copy the recording? I always ask myself "what's actually necessary to get this across?" when I'm creating tracks for public use. The groove is first, any fills are based on the structure, and about 100% of the gigs one might use tracks on have nobody listening critically. But I'm not familiar with that tune, so I may be entirely irrelevant.
    Didn't try to copy the recording drum track, that would be an impossible challenge



    Just tried to create something to help me practicing (the bass in that case, including a solo) and come up with a couple of appropriate bass and drum pattern templates in the same spirit as those you can hear on almost every other bar.
    Perfection is in the Details, but Perfection isn't a Detail (Leonardo da Vinci)

  36. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by mhch View Post
    Didn't try to copy the recording drum track, that would be an impossible challenge



    Just tried to create something to help me practicing (the bass in that case, including a solo) and come up with a couple of appropriate bass and drum pattern templates in the same spirit as those you can hear on almost every other bar.
    Man, I liked that playing. Nice use of repetition, and I really like the way you matched the song's intensity. Surely you did not create that drum backing track yourself ?

  37. #36

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    I'm not the one playing Just put that video so you could get an idea of the song and its drum track complexity.
    Perfection is in the Details, but Perfection isn't a Detail (Leonardo da Vinci)

  38. #37

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    If you plan to use microphones, listen to your room before proceeding. Noise is everywhere.

  39. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonzo View Post
    If you plan to use microphones, listen to your room before proceeding. Noise is everywhere.
    I bought a nice little mic/mic stand set-up a few years ago. I used it once and it was pretty good.

    I found our that is also a science in and of itself. By that, I mean the position of the microphone in relation to the speaker cone can have dramatic effect, in addition to extraneous noise.

  40. #39

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    Mic'ing is critical to get the sound you want. Take some time and make test recordings moving the mic around. When you find the spot(s) you like make notes with measurements (distance from top & side of cab and distance to grill cloth), this will help you refine mic placement or quickly find that magic spot next time you record.

  41. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by MaxTwang View Post
    Mic'ing is critical to get the sound you want. Take some time and make test recordings moving the mic around. When you find the spot(s) you like make notes with measurements (distance from top & side of cab and distance to grill cloth), this will help you refine mic placement or quickly find that magic spot next time you record.
    Duly noted. Thanks!

  42. #41
    On my first-time home recording, I made the worst recordings ever. The biggest mistake for this is that I have no proper guide track. I've hit the record button without even having a proper guide track ready. I should have set everything in place early on. Though it needs extra time but it can do a lot to make a better performance.
    Last edited by audlegend; 12-04-2016 at 04:06 AM.

  43. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by audlegend View Post
    On my first-time home recording, I made the worst recordings ever. The biggest mistake for this is that I have no proper guide track. I've hit the record button without even having a proper guide track ready. I should have set everything in place early on. Though it needs extra time but it can do a lot to make a better performance.
    You remind me of my first time using Reaper. I discovered it had a metronome in the top left corner of the string. But I had to do some research to figure out how to change the setting. It was a pain because you could not just right click on it and have the option appear.

    It was not intuitive in my opinion. I will watch out for this with other programs.

  44. #43

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    I found out my wife's computer has 8GB RAM so I installed Ableton Live 9 on it. When I get a chance to play with it, I will probably add more tips.

  45. #44

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    I wish there was a Company who sets up a few different cheap Laptop/ Interface/ Software Packages that as long as you use Computer 1 /with Interface A or B you can INSTANTLY and with stability run Software AA or RR etc. and it's guaranteed to run all the Drivers and Updates and ZY- 2795 Mystery Cables are there...so you can just Record and Play Back and Overdub.

    Because it seems like People start out trying to play the Guitar and Record it.....
    but end up playing the Computer and the Software and wondering why it does not just work.....

    When I last did serious Recording in 2000 I went to great lengths to avoid Protools and Computers until I was in the Studio with an Engineer...but that was MIDI keyboards and Modules and a Singer ...no Guitar so I used a Sampler to cut all the backups and Lead Vocals then dropped the individual Tracks onto a Masterlink and transferred those into Protools in the (pro) Studio in Sync and recut just the leads in the Pro Studio ..

    Not sure I will be able to do that with a Guitar intensive Project....
    But it was cost effective and I was able to concentrate on the Music ..not Computers/ Pro Tools etc etc etc

    I've been told that a Mac (most types ) and Garageband/Logic(most versions provided system requirements are met ) are probably the best plug and play reliable low headache solutions.
    Last edited by Robertkoa; 02-21-2017 at 12:30 PM.

  46. #45

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    I just lost a lot more moments in my life trying to figure this stuff out. Using the Reaper recording program and the EZ Mix 2 for effects, I once again tried to record through my focusrite Scarlett 2i4.

    I spent 3 nights in my hotel surfing the web trying to figure out why I could not hear the guitar's recorded tone while recording. On the fourth night, I gave up and sent a message to the technical support people at focusrite. I then sat down again with my setup and just started clicking on everything that seemed to be a button in the Reaper program. I accidentally saw a momentary message when my cursor passed over this little button-looking thingy, and it said something about monitoring.

    I moused over the item again and clicked and it turned into a little headset-looking icon - and I could hear sound with the focusrite monitor knob on "playback"! And I could also hear and vary the effects that were being recorded.

    So my tip here is that as you are learning your DAW, which in this case is Reaper, just point your mouse over things and see if a description or some other message comes up.

    I missed out on a lot of guitar playing this trip....

  47. #46

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    Biggest Beginner and even some Pros who should know better is :

    Guitar mixed WAYY too loud in the mix so it sounds like a Karaoke Recording making the Rhythm Tracks sound small and not hearing the interaction....

  48. #47

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    Quote Originally Posted by Robertkoa View Post
    Biggest Beginner and even some Pros who should know better is :

    Guitar mixed WAYY too loud in the mix so it sounds like a Karaoke Recording making the Rhythm Tracks sound small and not hearing the interaction....
    So hard to judge. Different people have different tastes. I was recording and mixing a R&R CD for a client. They kept telling me the guitars weren't loud enough. So I made them ridiculously loud to make a point about how wrong they were. Still wasn't loud enough. Everything else sounded tiny. Drums and bass and vocals seemed in the background. Still wasn't loud enough. Either I just didn't get it or they were wack. Needless to say I lost the job.

    I've some of my own music, my last CD and never did get the lead guitar to sit right on one song. I was convinced it was finally right. I did so many mixes of that song! It makes me cringe every time I hear it. Too far back and tone is wrong!!

    I worked with a producer many years ago who used to produce hit vocal pop records. Air Supply. He said whenever he'd ask the singer about the vocal level and he said it was just a little too loud, he knew it was just right. But turns out he was a total asshole so take that for what it's worth


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Last edited by henryrobinett; 06-08-2017 at 11:33 PM.

  49. #48

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    Well yeah ..When I was young long ago I wrote and Produced Jingles...not National Ones but Regional and this was Magnetic Tape and that Rule was...

    The Client wants to hear their Tag Line Loud...obviously.

    And I remember seeing some of your Posts before on other Forums ..you are one Pro Jazzer who pays total attention to your Signal Chain with great Converters , Axe Fx and you own a State of the Art Studio..so yeah gotta please the Client...

    I' ll give you an example though...

  50. #49

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    THANK YOU!

    There's this great Adam Rogers CD. The guitar is, for me too loud. And as you know, we love our jazz guitar very dark. You can tell the engineer was frustrated. The guitar had all the low end. The upright bass was back behind the guitar. Rogers took up all that frequency. Almost everyone buying the CD would be jazz guitar players and all they wanted to hear was Adam, so it was all good.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  51. #50

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    Another CLASSIC mistake a lot of Musicians make is
    trying to do a Commercial Quality Recording in a Home Studio even a good one.

    I am a fan of doing all the Preproduction at Home or in the' small' studio getting nearly ' Perfect Takes '
    on your Instrument or Vocals ...

    Doing Mixes at Home ... try it sure ..

    BUT if you have 3 or 4 Tunes fully preproduced at high fidelity and really want Commercial Quality ..

    Spending a few hundred dollars on even a mid level Pro Studio with an Engineer and 3 or 4 Sets of Monitors and popping your best Mix on there then mix the Levels .EQ even EFX ..but maybe let the Engineer do the Compression and Mastering...

    Also once you have your 'best' mix Up it's only 5 or 10 minutes each to do ....
    1) A dry type mix with less EFX...
    2)A wilder mix more EFX
    3) Slightly bottom heavy - slightly
    4) Slightly Brighter
    5)Engineer Choice Mix
    Mark each one decide over the next week which one makes it to the CD play it in Cars , Boomboxes etc.

    Do the above( not exactly but you get it.) With each Tune.

    IF you can really get Commercial Quality at home and it plays well on a lot of Systems ( the Public - remember them ?) then you are good without the Pro Studio...but few can do this it seems.

    The Karaoke thing I mentioned is usually Youtube People...and Semi Pro Albums sometimes even semi famous Guitarists.
    On Jazz Guitar albums I usually want more Bass Guitar...but I am R&B oriented so not qualified to say.

    Metheny is never too loud..Benson never..Norman Brown is a bit louder than Benson but never too loud...
    Seems like they used to mix Wes louder but he sounded great that way ...

    I usually like the Jazz Guitar Pro Albums mixes...the Semi Pro and Youtube ones are often way loud on the Guitar ..
    Last edited by Robertkoa; 06-09-2017 at 02:27 PM.