WARNING: A pretty long post, but to summarize it up, I'm mainly looking for help in making gear purchasing decisions, and a little bit on mixing/drum tips.

So although I am still relatively novice in the world of recording, I am looking into saving up for a considerably better set-up that I currently have now. I don't want to get too ahead of myself here, but I can't help but be curious about the investment part of this.

Anyways, this is my current set-up, which I have found fun to learn things with.

PreSonus Inspire 1394
Cubase LE 4
Shure SM57
Studio Projects B1
KRK RoKit 6 monitor pair
Seinheiser HD 280 Pro headphones

From what I've found so far, this has been a useful set-up for learning the basics, and I've made some okay sounding guitar and bass recordings with it. But unfortunately, I find I've been having a b*tch of a time getting things to sound the way I want them to in my recordings, and I think it is largely due to the drums. I'm using various samples I've acquired through people/links on here, and arranging them into drum tracks with Modplug tracker (And exporting a separate wav. file for the kick, snare, toms, etc.).

I'm sure there's a good chance it may not be the tools "fault" here, but at the same time, I'm looking to eventually upgrade my gear anyway because I want to be able to record a drummer, and just improve the overall quality of my rig in general.

Basically, over the next several months, possibly into fall, I'd like to save up a nice chunk of money to get myself started with this, possibly somewhere between $3 and $5K. We'll see how things play out, but let's just work with that ballpark range. What is some gear I should eventually consider? Good interfaces? new monitors? nice drum mics/other mics? anything else you guys would recommend, or any advice on improving my recordings with my current gear will greatly help me out! (I'll try and upload a clip of something later or tomorrow)

EDIT: If it helps, I'm primarily recording metal, but am interested in recording other genres as well.
- Gibson Flying V 120 #1 (White)
- Gibson Flying V 120 #2 (Cherry)
- Gibson SG Standard ('61 style)
- Jackson DK2M

- ENGL Fireball 60
- Avatar 4x12

- Many pedals, plus other stuff
things for you to get:
1) An interface with a minimum of 8 inputs. more is better here
2) Full version of your DAW
3) As many mics as you can get. (a drum mic kit, a few condeser mics, a few dynamic)
4) Better Quality Monitors
5) A midi controller (not necessary but useful)

If you are looking for specifics just let us know.
Yeah, specifics would be awesome. I have questions on the following..

- I was looking at some of the Tube-based interfaces by PreSonus. Are these good units? Would it be wiser to spend a bit closer to $900-$1K? (The PreSonus being around $650-$700 I tihnk)
- Cubase 4. The way to go with Cubase? Or is there a different version that's better?
- Mic recommendations for each type of drum? or a good kit to go with?
- For better monitors, the KRK VXT series? or an old pair of Yamaha NS-10's?
- Elaborate a bit more of MIDI controllers? (Keyboard?)
- Is a mixing board necessary?
- Gibson Flying V 120 #1 (White)
- Gibson Flying V 120 #2 (Cherry)
- Gibson SG Standard ('61 style)
- Jackson DK2M

- ENGL Fireball 60
- Avatar 4x12

- Many pedals, plus other stuff
ok, so i'll be honest, I don't know all that much about the high end stuff.
my suggestion is read. . . everything you can get your eyes a lookin at. (no not the pron)

As for cubase, I vote no. Simply because I don't really care for the way it works. though it does work and if you like the le version then you should like the full.

I would highly suggest a midi keyboard, anyone will do, its just based on how many keys/knobs/faders/blah blah blah that you want. It will be alot easier to write in midi parts this way for vsti and you can use knobs to program controlls and transport keys are awsome.

mixing board = not necessary. Your DAW does that for you.

Hope that helps you out a bit, and that someone else will come by and help out on everything else.

Thanks dude

But, about the MIDI controller...Although I've wanted to learn for a while, I'm not exactly good at piano/keyboard. Do I need to know how to play one well to make use of it in the recording environment? Do I need to shell out a lot of money for a decent one too?

What DAW do you use? What do you dislike about Cubase? I personally find it to be fine, so far at least.

Thanks again
**** that noise, all you really need is from aside what you have is,

8 channel preamp. (profire 2626) do it...

your monitors are good enough,

A few home made bass traps

2 overhead mics. rode nt5s are stellar for that ****

and a few more mics of your choice per say vocals i really sugest going with the audio technica at3035 great for vocal. and the 57 is boss on guitar

cubase le 4 is legit, but go ahoead and buy cubase 4, cubase is a ****ing sick daw, with unlimited macro abilitys and amazing at editing,. do what you like.