#1
Hey

I play in a garage rock band (think early black keys and white stripes) and I'm wanting to ask a question about recording interfaces and different methods of going about recording.

We have tried recording one track at a time and the recording came out alright and was sounded pretty decent but the energy just wasn't there in the track as we like to do alot of improv and jam off each other.

So how would I go about recording a full band at once in a home studio sort of situation where I need to record guitars, bass and drums. i will overdub the vocals later. We have been contemplating the idea of just setting down a mic in the room that is of good quality and just going for it but would it be a better idea to get a audio interface that will meet our needs.

the drummer uses an electric kit for recording so plugging the drummer into the interface is no problem. So if anyone can answer the question or point to an interface which is relatively cheap and perfect for our needs i will be grateful
#2
Just setting a mic in the middle of the room isn't going to work all that well. Think about all those camcorder videos people submit to Youtube of their favorite band, or from their practice session. Granted the mics on camcorders aren't all that great, but you'll achieve similar quality.

Ideally, you want to mic the guitar cabs and DI the bass. The drummer's kit can also be DId or run directly into the interface. Only problem with an electronic kit and recording it that way, is that you'll have no chance of changing the level of the snare, or kick, later on. It's one level and that's it.

You don't say what your budget is, but you need something with at least 5 or 6 channels. If you have a computer with USB2, you could consider the Tascam US-2000. For the price, it's a decent unit. You could also look at the Tascam US-1800, if I'm remembering the model right. This one has 8 XLR/TRS inputs and also records out to USB. I know the US-2000 comes with Cubase and the 1800 probably does too. Buy enough mics to track what you need and your good. There might be some other options I'm not aware of, but that's my suggestion.
#3
That pretty nicely sits in our budget i think the drummer was on about getting some drum mics so would the drummer be able to record what he needs off 8 xlr inputs i have no experience with drums so i have no clue in that respect
#4
Quote by KG6_Steven
You don't say what your budget is, but you need something with at least 5 or 6 channels. If you have a computer with USB2, you could consider the Tascam US-2000. For the price, it's a decent unit. You could also look at the Tascam US-1800, if I'm remembering the model right. This one has 8 XLR/TRS inputs and also records out to USB. I know the US-2000 comes with Cubase and the 1800 probably does too. Buy enough mics to track what you need and your good. There might be some other options I'm not aware of, but that's my suggestion.


There are some problems with the US-1800 when it comes to the quality of the unit. Kyle62 mentioned in another post that he bought one and it started to fall apart very quickly. Not to say all of them are bad but I'd say quality control on them is kinda meh since they cut the price of pretty much every 8 XLR interface in half.

If you're looking for something with a lot more quality, look into the Focusrite Scarlett 18i20. Great little units, USB 2.0 and probably the best interface under $500. If you're using a Macbook or have a desktop PC where you can add a FireWire card, look into the Focusrite Saffire Pro 40. Same thing as the Scarlett but closer in price to the US-1800 (There are 2 on eBay for $320 & $350, best place to find cheaper gear). Quality wise, the Focusrite stuff will kick the shit out of the Tascam.
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#5
Easier still....I'm assuming at the moment you have some kind of basic interface with two inputs, right?

What you want to do is mic the guitar into one input, and DI the bass into the other. Then take a feed from the electric drums using a USB > MIDI interface (they cost about a fiver). Then you'd get a drum VST intstrument to turn the MIDI file into real sounding drums; Analogue Drums' 'Big Mono' kit is free and would suit your sound perfectly.

That's only a stopgap though, you'll be much happier with drum mics and a bigger interface.


Don't buy a full set of drum mics - you don't really need em.

Four mics would be ideal; kick, snare and two overheads. Check out the 'Glyn Johns' and 'Recorderman' techniques for minimal miking.


I've recently started using Recorderman-style overheads, even on large multimiked projects; they sound really dry and punchy and can help cover for a bad sounding room.

The US-1800 is built to a price and I'm very unhappy about mine failing, but there really is nothing else that gives you that many inputs for the kind of price.

Even the more expensive ones don't offer the extra line inputs on the back, and require you to buy an ADAT preamp to get the advertised 16 inputs.

In fact, the other day I started putting together a little comparison table of audio interfaces. It's not finished and only shows the bare essentials (physical inputs), but someone might find it handy: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AirQZy1DAac3dEotWEh4SDd0cGZuVjRpdkFTcFZIMmc&usp=sharing
#6
Quote by kyle62
In fact, the other day I started putting together a little comparison table of audio interfaces. It's not finished and only shows the bare essentials (physical inputs), but someone might find it handy: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AirQZy1DAac3dEotWEh4SDd0cGZuVjRpdkFTcFZIMmc&usp=sharing


Too bad you didn't make that editable, I'd help expand/edit it (Especially prices. The Profire 2626 is $400 in the US which is a lot better than £430 which converts to $667).

Edit: Wait, found a way to make a copy and edit it myself :p
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Last edited by lockwolf at Jun 4, 2013,
#8
Quote by lockwolf
Too bad you didn't make that editable, I'd help expand/edit it (Especially prices. The Profire 2626 is $400 in the US which is a lot better than £430 which converts to $667).

Edit: Wait, found a way to make a copy and edit it myself :p


Awesomesauce! Go nuts and maybe it'll become a fully-fledged buyer's guide.

(Ignore my pathetic attempts at trying to remember spreadsheet formulae, btw )
#9
Quote by lockwolf
There are some problems with the US-1800 when it comes to the quality of the unit. Kyle62 mentioned in another post that he bought one and it started to fall apart very quickly. Not to say all of them are bad but I'd say quality control on them is kinda meh since they cut the price of pretty much every 8 XLR interface in half.

If you're looking for something with a lot more quality, look into the Focusrite Scarlett 18i20. Great little units, USB 2.0 and probably the best interface under $500. If you're using a Macbook or have a desktop PC where you can add a FireWire card, look into the Focusrite Saffire Pro 40. Same thing as the Scarlett but closer in price to the US-1800 (There are 2 on eBay for $320 & $350, best place to find cheaper gear). Quality wise, the Focusrite stuff will kick the shit out of the Tascam.



Okay, so one guy had a problem with his falling apart. The experience I've had with my US-2000 and my friend's US-1800 has been good. Same for the reviews I read prior to buying mine. I used mine for a couple of years, before moving up to a Presonus 16.4.2. I can't speak for the Focusrite stuff. There seems to be a lot of fanboys out there, though.
#10
I still have recordings of my old punk band from 2001 doing full-band recordings with 1 mic in the middle of the room, with a 4-track recorder (tape). They are great (in an awful way).

I ended up getting a TASCAM 8-track recorder and recording drums separately, then taking everything else separately. Worked great for demos and songwriting.
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#11
Quote by KG6_Steven
I can't speak for the Focusrite stuff. There seems to be a lot of fanboys out there, though.


There is a bit of fanboyism but there really isn't much comparable in its price range when it comes to quality. When it comes to the 2i4, the only things in its price range that have similar specs are the Presonus Audiobox 22VSL & the Steinberg UR22. I'm not a huge Presonus fan due to all the driver issues they had in the past and I haven't messed with the UR22 to say whether its good or not.

Sure, there are fanboys of everything but there is a huge reason why the Focusrite stuff gets pushed everywhere. Even viewing other message boards & Reddit, the 2i4 is brought up all the time as the best under $200.
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