Hey guys, I recently read the stickied thread by Pink Queen about the recording FAQ. It was really useful, and I learned a lot of information from it.

However, I'm a bit confused about some hardware still, as I am indeed, a newb. I want to begin recording some stuff, such as my guitar playing (electric and acoustic) and some singing.

I have some PC software that he mentioned in his FAQ, such as the Cubase, and Audacity, as well as a few others, like Sony Acid pro.

Now what I want to know is, what are these "studio workstations" that I keep seeing in websites and guitar magazines? Such as this one below:


Where would they fit in his stages of the FAQ? (for those who read it) I understand the bit he explained about how to capture sound using a microphone, and then the audio/recording interfaces, such as the Toneport or the M-Audio Fasttrack, but those are just small devices you plug into the computer, right? To be able to transfer captured sound from your microphone into your PC?

So basically I'm thinking about buying one of those (Toneport), but I keep seeing those studio workstations like in that link, and was wondering what those are and what they do. Do they still require a computer to use? Or what? Lol, sorry I'm such a newb and have a lot of questions, but I figured you guys are the recording gurus so I wanted to ask.

Anyway, thanks for reading, and any help is appreciated.

These "studio workstations" are actually MTRs (multi track recorders) which have amp and FX modeling for instruments. When you get a "digital workstation' it means you can hook up any type of mic or instrument and record without any guitar amp on hand.
When you get a "multi track recorder", generally you need amps and such as the device will only record.

If you have a workstation or MTR, you should not need any interface or computer to work even though you will be limited...

The best way to go IMO is with a destkop or powerful laptop and audio interface. Get an interface that will have the # of inputs you need as well as features you will need (such as XLR and TRS inputs, Preamps, MIDI...)
Working on a computer (or DAW ...Digital audio workstation) is a lot easier since you can do a lot more and have a large screen. Generally you can get a better setup for your price when setting up a studio with a DAW compared to an MTR or workstation.

Info on MTRs:


The toneport audio interfaces are fair and they are low in price now but I find the preamps to be noisy and GearBox to be a letdown when it comes to tone...

Read though Tweaks guide (linked in my post and sig) and then read though this chart to see what setup fits you best.


I'm not sure if you have seen my recording videos yet but im working on a 3rd one now about MTRs and digital workstations. (just need to find my miniDV camera...)
I will be sure to go into detail between these two pieces of ahardware. After reading your post it sounds like a good thing to add to the script.
Thanks a lot for your informative post!

Wow, those links you provided has a ton of info. Valuable and intensive info at that! I will definitely take the time and read through them.

So now I think I'm a lot more clear on what those products are and what I need. I think I will go the Audio Interface route and use my desktop PC. I'll do some more research on the specific models to see which one I can afford and will work best.

I'll also check out your recording videos, thanks again for replying!

If anybody wants to chime in with their opinions or are just in here harvesting info like me, feel free to post!