Hi Everyone,

I'm a beginner at this sort of stuff, and I'm after some advice from one of you knowledgeable gentlemen (or ladies! ) out there!

My setup:

Blackstar HT-5, Boss ME-25 in the effects loop. A laptop ( Windows XP) with the Sonar LE software which came with the ME-25. I prefer the sound from the laptop to output to a generic hifi.


Before I bought the Blackstar, I was briefly using the ME-25 as Midi to record to the laptop. Now I only use the ME-25 for delay/reverb/chorus etc as I like the sound of the HT-5 with no other amp models. I want to record what comes out of the HT-5 speaker instead of what comes out of the ME-25.


1. Obviously this will need a microphone, but what sort of interface will I need between the Mic and the Laptop?

2. Also, will the Mic pick up sounds from the Hifi speakers if I'm playing along to a backing track? If so, how do I combat this problem?

3. Sonar LE. Is it any good?, or would you recommend easier/better software?

An idea of my typical usage:

I basically want to use recording to make me a better player so I can hear what others would hear, and check my timing and how clean I play. When I get more confident, I'd like to write some of my own stuff and record it.

I can spend some cash on this, but I wouldn't want to go much over £200 for everything, though I would if it would make my life easier and the results would be significantly better.

Thanks for reading my pretty long post, and if it's been covered elsewhere then I'm sorry!!

Okay well I'm not exactly sure what you're getting at here. BUT, I do understand you want better recordings. So I can tell you if you're looking to connect a mic to you computer your best off going with a pre amp that hooks into the computer then a mic that goes into that. But you'll be hard pressed to find those 2 things under your budget. Hope that helps.
Originally Posted by JAHellraiser
Go into Guitar Center and tell them you are willing to spend $3000 on as many Spider and MG half stacks as they can give you.
Here is my suggestion:
1) Mic: go for Shure SM57. It's the best mic you will find for about US$99 new. Used everywhere for professional recordings.

2) The mic can go into your computer two ways:
a) any USB/Firewire XLR interface (recording station, XLR2USB) will do. You don't need phantom power;
b) a cable with XLR in one end and 3.5mm connector in the other. This way you can plug your mic directly into your computer using the mic port on your sound board. This *might* be prone to interference, since you're loosing the protection of a XLR cable, but I haven't experienced any while recording.

3) If you want to play along a backing track you could either play it on your hifi, or use a headphone. The SM57 is VERY directional, so little to no external sound should leak into it. Just use your hifi at moderate volumes.

4) The software I use for multi-track recording is Ardour. I really enjoy it and after following their how-to I feel really comfortable with it. Best of all, it's free.

Don't forget to try different mic positioning: off-axis/on-axis, centered/on edge, etc. Take a look here .

Wow, thanks for the great replies.

I've found the Shure and EMU 0404 with free Mic boom and Xlr cable for £258. I'll look into Reaper and Ardour to see what the crack is!!

I'll have a look on Ebay to see if I can get the stuff cheaper, but it sounds pretty good.

I'm sure I'll be back with more questions when the stuff arrives.

Thanks again,

You're not gonna get a good sound out of micing a Blackstar HT-5. You're better off getting something like a Pod Studio GX and going direct with your guitar. You'll save tons of money that way and be a little more pleased with the sound.
Derpy Derp Derp Herp Derp