Hey there UG

I decided recently that I wanted to begin learning how to record music starting very soon and I wanted to ask about some starting gear. (mostly rock/metal but I'm definitely open to learning more!!!)

For starters I'm sure I will need a new computer. I hear high end macs are the most commonly used when it comes to this stuff but I would like to know. And if there's an alternative, can I have any suggestions? I heard from someone that newer PCs made for windows 8 do a great job as well for running DAWs.

I did a little bit of research and I think as far as an interface and mic go, I may start with a focusrite scarlett 2i2 interface and possibly an sm57. I don't know too much about recording interfaces but if anyone can recommend me a better one to start with or tell me what this thing does better or worse than other interfaces, please tell me!

Unfortunately, I do not play drums nor do I own a kit so I was considering just downloading EZ or Superior drummer for now (I can write drums on guitar pro so hopefully that helps haha)

When it comes to studio monitors, I know absolutely nothing. there's a package where i can buy the scarlett interface along with a set of Alesis elevate 3 studio monitors and MXL 990 for vocals. Again if anyone can tell me anything I may need to know about these or if I should just spend more for the vocal mic and monitors, please throw some recommendations my way.
For a starter interface, you cant really get better than the scarlet. I'd get a vocal mic instead of the sm57, since you can use amp sims for recording guitars, and some of them sound absolutely amazing. I use addictive drums for drum sequencing, but i'd recommend superior drummer. I only use AD since i didnt have enough hard drive space when i was installing them. As for monitors, i dont know really, i went to the store and the guy sold me some cheap entry level active monitors. They sound pretty good.

If i were you, i would get a PC. There is literaly no advantage to having a mac these days, unless you are dead set on using Logic or any other mac only DAW. They just cost way more. Make sure your pc has a bunch of RAM and a good cpu if you are going to buy a new one. And post the specs of the current one, maybe you can still use that. Mine is a win7 machine with 4gb of ram and a Intel Dualcore 2GHz, its around 6 years old, and pretty much everything still works on it well enough to record and mix tracks. I use Reaper as my DAW since it used to be free, and its still really cheap nowdays, and im used to it. You can really go with any other one you choose, Cubase, ProTools, Ableton... Those are the main one that seem to get used. Its mostly personal prefrence. Just make sure that the one you are gonna use supports VST plugins.
Joža je kul. On ma sirove z dodatki pa hambije.
I would say to shell out a bit more money and get the Scarlett 6i6, you get ALOT more routing options and you can grow with it alot more. If things go well when you start you will QUICKLY outgrow the 2i2.

and let me be first to suggest grabbing yourself a Shure SM7b vocal mic, its amazing for bedroom studios and is one of the cheaper pro mics you can buy.

I use both that mic and interface everyday and love them.

As for monitors, dont get anything smaller than 6" speakers. You cant really hear enough Low End from a 5" speaker, I would recommend Craigslist to find a good deal.

I found my Gen2 KRK Rokit 6's for 150$ FOR THE PAIR!! thats super low for great moniotrs!!

And Also, Reaper for your startuing DAW all the way. I still use it to this day and i see 0 reason to switch.


produced with the 6i6 in reaper.
Just another idea to throw out there - Acoustica Mixcraft 6.
Hear me out.
I've been using it since Mixcraft 4 and the main draw was the similar workflow to Logic/Garageband, but it just generally a fairly good DAW, it's very cheap and includes a load of good plugins (loads more if you go for the 'Studio' version)
Personally, instead of just going for Reaper, get the demos for a bunch of DAWs and try them all out. See what suits your style.


Try out at least some of those (including Mixcraft and Reaper)

EDIT: Just seen this (BitWig) . It seems like a properly Modern DAW, so it might be worth checking out. I'm just about to get the demo and have a look for myself.
Last edited by CorrosionMedia at Sep 22, 2014,
I dunno about hightension01's recommendation about going all the way to the 6i6, I've been using my 2i4 for years and I've never longed for more inputs. The only time I could think of needing them would be a live or drum recording, neither of which I have a good enough sounding room to do. That said, I would recommend going a little higher than the 2i2, namely the 2i4 because it has the pad. The focusrite preamps run pretty high, and will often clip on direct input without a pad.

For computers it's not anywhere near as big a deal if you're half smart about how you use it. Any dual core with 4GB+ of ram and a 7200RPM hard drive will do just fine. The trick is to render/freeze any virtual instruments to stems, as these are real resource hogs.

For DAWs the standard recommendation here is REAPER, it's cheap and just as powerful as everything else. We don't condone piracy here so instead of 'downloading' EZD/Superior look up Sennheiser DrumMic'A! (in a translate-enabled browser). It's a free drum program like superior, only downside is that you have to navigate through the german Sennheiser site to get to it.

I don't know much about monitors so I won't comment on them. Never been a huge fan of the 990, but it's probably still better than a 57 for vocals so it can't hurt.