I've recently decided to get set up a basic recording studio. I'm going to be buying a mic in a few days, and for the next purchase I want to get a decent external soundcard/recording interface.

Right now I'm using a Compaq Presario purchased in 1999, that runs on Win98 with Audacity. I was just wondering if alot of these newer recording interfaces generally work on win98, or will I have to wait until I buy a new computer to buy a recording interface?
In general, yes, you should either upgrade to Windows 2000/XP or wait for your next computer, as most require at least Windows 2000. At the very least, their latest and most efficient drivers require that operating system.
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thank you sooooooo much for the advice Fast_Fingers...i would hug you if i could...i looooove you!

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Make a tentative choice in whichever soundcard you want to get, and go to the company website. Check to see if there are drivers for it for that OS. If there are, then it will work.

You may find that the driver that will work for Win98 will also work for ME, 2000, XP also. In which case, it should be a relatively new driver.

My concern is this: Your system if 9 years old. Does it have the horsepower to do an adquate job of recording?

Don't worry too much about having an octo-core 3.5ghz processor with hyperthreading and blah, blah, blah. A modest system will do fine - but I'm just wondering HOW modest your system is.

Make sure, more than anything else, your hard drive is at least 7200 rpm. Some older machines, and most laptops even nowadays have hard drives running at 5400rpm, which will take a big serious dent out of the number of audio tracks you'll be able run simultaneously.

As a point of reference, we did our album on my computer, which when I think about it, probably isn't *that* much newer... though in computer terms, three years is a long time.... Anyway... each song was upwards to 36 tracks of 24 bit audio, and we had enough horsepower for any insert/send fx that were used.

I'm running:

Celeron 1.7 Ghz
512 MB RAM
Win XP
(2x) 7200 rpm hard drives.

Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
For now I'm just recording a single mic at 16bit 44.1 sampling (CD Quality) with audacity. And I'll rarely be going beyond 3 tracks at a time. I realize my system is pretty outdated, but as I said I will upgrading. And it doesn't seem to be struggling to much. So I want to get a Recording Interface first, since my system seems to be able to hold up to my basic recording needs for now.