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  #1  
Old 05-28-2016, 11:12 AM
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Default Recording my drumming

Hi Guys

Don't ask me why but I have a hankering to attempt to record my drumming using a better setup than my iPhone camera and mic. I've never used a mixer or sound editing software in my life.

So here's the thing:

I'm considering buying a XENIX Q802USB mixer at about £65, a few cheap mics (possibly four Pyle-Pro PDMIC78 at a total of about £56) and some mic stands at a total of about £40.

This all adds up to about £160, plus a bit of shipping.

I'd use GarageBand on my MacBook to do the recording/editing.

Yes I know that this isn't gonna be even close to a pro set-up but do you guys think this would be OK? Surely it has to be better than the iPhone?

If there's a better way for a similar budget I'd appreciate anyone's input.

Many thanks.
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Last edited by Mart61; 05-28-2016 at 12:11 PM.
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Old 05-28-2016, 12:56 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

The mic's are the weak link in your proposal. They will be your limiting factor, but still way better than your iPhone mic setup. All depends on what you're trying to achieve, but you can carry out quite considerable audio modification in Garageband if you wish. In most cases, the more "impressive" you want the sound to be, the less critical the mic's & source are. If you want good quality naturalistic recordings however, it all gets a bit more involved.

For the money you're proposing, I'd say go for it. You'll soon find where the pinch points are, & there's no better way of finding out where to go next than jumping in feet first :)
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Old 05-28-2016, 03:55 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Thanks Andy. I may well give it a go.

As you say the mics are a bit pants but hey, for about £14 each, what should I expect eh? They seem to be even cheaper in the USA - I read of a guy that paid $27 for four!

If only one could get stuff that cheap in the UK...
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Old 05-29-2016, 11:27 AM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

If all you're trying to do is listen back to yourself for the sake of improvement, then going a cheap option like that will definitely be better than an iPhone + microphone :).

But if the time ever comes when you want to make a serious effort at recording your drums for real, expect to take time saving and purchasing good quality microphones over time. You'll also want to invest in a good multi-track mixer (that supports i/o with ALL channels via USB or Firewire). Once you're serious about recording there is no point in buying cheap mics. You can get sets from brands like AKG and Audix (I prefer Audix, personally) that will include say, 1x snare, 3x toms, 1x kick and 2x overhead mics - or a similar variation. This is probably the cheapest and easiest way to get quality mics. But do your research first.

That all said - until you're really serious about quality, go as cheap as you like!
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Old 05-29-2016, 11:32 AM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Many thanks for the suggestions.
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  #6  
Old 05-29-2016, 01:45 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Personally, I'd invest in one or two inexpensive condensers(like Behringer) and then just start saving for a bass drum mic. That's all you really need unless you're doing special processing or have to fix inner dynamics post recording.

The rest of the stuff needed can be expensice, but really, there's so much cheap second hand stuff available.
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  #7  
Old 05-29-2016, 06:09 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Mart,

If this is your first attempt at recording, I tend to recommend that people start simple. One or two LDCs into an interface + Garageband. Here's a good example of a guy using a TCHAD config.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5o8weyzNUCA
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Old 05-29-2016, 06:27 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

I would start off with a set of condenser overheads. You can make a pretty good recording with them if you place them well. A good set can be had for about $150 USD.
Add a good bass drum mic and eventually obtain snare and tom mics that are comparable to Shure SM57.
You should also get a large interface that can handle at least 14 tracks.
Don't waste your money on super inexpensive gear.
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  #9  
Old 05-29-2016, 06:36 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Look at Digital Reference mics. Very low cost and surprisingly good sound. Behringer isn't my fave but it will do what you ask. GL
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  #10  
Old 05-30-2016, 01:02 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Thanks again for all your replies and suggestions - much appreciated.
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Old 05-31-2016, 07:15 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

I would suggest getting a couple cheap dynamic mics, those have given me consistently the best quality for price, and they're great for drums.

I've gotten really good results from using a two mic setup. I've got two decent dynamic mics, an SM58 and another more expensive one, whose name escapes me (when I get back in the practice room I can add this, haha!). I position the better one up on a stand in front of me and above my crashes, essentially (I have an offset tom setup with two crashes in front of me). This mic captures almost everything with perfect definition, with surprisingly little wash from the cymbals. I use the SM58 low to the floor next to my floor toms, as the higher mic's main issue is that, with the cymbals, the kick and lower tones of the toms can be lost in the audio ether. The SM58 grabs great definition from my kick and helps bring body to my toms. I've never needed anything else. I've heard this described as 'letting the drums breathe', which I'm all about. Less is more!

If you are planning on getting four mics, however, I'd recommend using one above you and your snare as I described above, with another over your floor tom/ride area. The other two would serve you well by your kick(s) or for an extra snare/hat mic. This just comes from my experience helping my buddies mic things, and experimenting with my own rig during practice.

In the end, what matters is what works for what you need. Your mic choices sound very reasonable and cost-effective. Just ensure that, if you need phantom power, you get the appropriate gear for that too. There are USB dynamic mics that wouldn't need phantom power, but I haven't had the opportunity to pick one up yet, so I can't speak for their ability.

As for programs, I've never had the need for a mixer, I use a program called Audacity (free and cross-platform) which has lots of FX to work with, including things like EQ and wacky stuff like phasers and custom works. It's also really easy to use, and supports direct recording into the program, with a largely unlimited capacity for added tracks.

I hope your purchase goes well, and that you're satisfied with your new sound.

Cheers!
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  #12  
Old 05-31-2016, 08:25 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Has anyone tried the Sabian Sound Kit?

http://sabiansoundkit.com
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  #13  
Old 10-23-2016, 02:35 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Resurrecting an old thread, I find myself in Bangkok as I type and I'm wondering if any of the necessary equipment may be cheaper in these parts.

Just to be clear, am I right in thinking that, with a USB mixer, even if I have four or more mics, the signal into my MacBook will only be two channels from the USB, or would it transfer each mic as an individual track?
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  #14  
Old 10-23-2016, 03:24 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

It depends on the mixer.

I use a Behringer XR-18 Air, which has 18 in/18 out via USB.

But other mixers will definitely only have stereo in/stereo out.

Read the specs for the product carefully!
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  #15  
Old 10-23-2016, 03:28 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Thanks for the reply. I downloaded the manual for the Behringer Q802 USB I've been considering but can't see where that detail is shown. I'll have another look.
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  #16  
Old 10-23-2016, 03:58 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

I would use only overheads to record yourself. It will make/force you to be a balanced drummer and have all your limbs at the right level: most drummers have their right hand (hats, ride) too loud because it is their dominant hand. Using multiple mics will allow you to bring each drum up and down in the mix but will not make you a better drummer

1 or 2 overheads/room mics will make you a more balNced drummer. Just listen back and adjust accordingly.
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  #17  
Old 10-23-2016, 05:07 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

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Originally Posted by drum4fun27302 View Post
I would use only overheads to record yourself. It will make/force you to be a balanced drummer and have all your limbs at the right level: most drummers have their right hand (hats, ride) too loud because it is their dominant hand. Using multiple mics will allow you to bring each drum up and down in the mix but will not make you a better drummer

1 or 2 overheads/room mics will make you a more balNced drummer. Just listen back and adjust accordingly.
Thanks - that makes a lot of sense.
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Old 10-24-2016, 12:24 AM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mart61 View Post
Thanks for the reply. I downloaded the manual for the Behringer Q802 USB I've been considering but can't see where that detail is shown. I'll have another look.
I am fairly certain the Xenyx mixers only have stereo in/out. Certainly the old Xenyx I have only has stereo in and out, which was a surprise to me as there was nowhere in the spec sheet that stated what it had.

Compare that to the Features page for the XR-18 mixer I have:
http://www.music-group.com/Categorie...s/XR18/p/P0BI8

Quote:
18 x 18 channel, bidirectional USB interface for direct recording on iPad etc.
So that's really what you're looking for, and it should be advertised on the page for the device. Failing that, you can always contact Behringer and find out.
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Old 10-24-2016, 01:58 AM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Nothing useful to add, but nice to see you back Mart61.
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  #20  
Old 10-24-2016, 12:50 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

A couple of PZM mics in the room will be absolutely fine.

One just in front of the kick and then on on the ceiling above.

Buy a cheap interface into your garageband and you#re well away.

My only concern would be disk space on your iPad, especially without connection to the cloud
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Old 02-02-2017, 10:36 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Hi guys

Thanks for the input thus far. I found this and have a question regarding the 1 mic set up that starts about the 1:00 mark:

https://youtu.be/GPPhmyBIi6k

This to me sound great!

So here's my question: could I buy a USB condenser mic and go straight into my MacBook, thus avoiding needing to buy an interface etc? Also I'm not sure which mic he's using - it may be a $1000 dollar mic. It seems to be switching between omni and cardioid.

Your thoughts?
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Old 02-02-2017, 10:42 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mart61 View Post
So here's my question: could I buy a USB condenser mic and go straight into my MacBook, thus avoiding needing to buy an interface etc?
Your thoughts?
Yes. Grab a USB version of the AT2020/2035 and set it up in the TCHAD position.

It will sound like this.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=unkJV5ion04
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  #23  
Old 02-02-2017, 11:13 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

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Originally Posted by KamaK View Post
Yes. Grab a USB version of the AT2020/2035 and set it up in the TCHAD position.

It will sound like this.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=unkJV5ion04
Thanks for that. What is the TCHAD position?
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Old 02-02-2017, 11:20 PM
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Thanks for that. What is the TCHAD position?
T-Chad Blake is right about here.....

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Old 02-02-2017, 11:22 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Ah yes - that's pretty much where the video I posted had it. Which direction do you have the cardiod facing?
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Old 02-02-2017, 11:23 PM
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Ah yes - that's pretty much where the video I posted had it. Which direction do you have the cardiod facing?
Pointing toward the snare.
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Old 02-02-2017, 11:25 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Cool. Many thanks - I may well give that a try.
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Old 02-02-2017, 11:34 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

AT2020's are GREAT condenser mics for the $$$. In fact, I use them as my overheads. Prior to expanding my setup, I recorded using only two AT2020's and an AudioBox two channel interface.

If you could swing for 2 of those mics, the small interface and two cheap stands, that's really all you'll need, possibly forever and will get very, very good recordings. I know since I've been there - done that using this identical setup.

Plus with the AudioBox, Studio One Artist DAW is included free.

Good Luck!
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Old 02-02-2017, 11:38 PM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Yes I've been reading your posts about the setup you used. I've got an Audiobox USB on watch on eBay. If I can get this for a song I may bite the bullet and go for the setup you suggest.

Fingers crossed. I'll keep you posted. :)

I might try GarageBand on my Mac.
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Old 02-03-2017, 03:56 AM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mart61 View Post
Hi guys

Thanks for the input thus far. I found this and have a question regarding the 1 mic set up that starts about the 1:00 mark:

https://youtu.be/GPPhmyBIi6k

This to me sound great!

So here's my question: could I buy a USB condenser mic and go straight into my MacBook, thus avoiding needing to buy an interface etc? Also I'm not sure which mic he's using - it may be a $1000 dollar mic. It seems to be switching between omni and cardioid.

Your thoughts?
It aught to sound great. With that room and those mics. The room mic he was using is like $4000 US.

You'll be more than happy with a set of drum mics for a few hundred if it's not for serious studio work. Check out the Audix kits.
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Old 02-03-2017, 05:32 AM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mart61 View Post
Hi guys

Thanks for the input thus far. I found this and have a question regarding the 1 mic set up that starts about the 1:00 mark:

https://youtu.be/GPPhmyBIi6k

This to me sound great!

So here's my question: could I buy a USB condenser mic and go straight into my MacBook, thus avoiding needing to buy an interface etc? Also I'm not sure which mic he's using - it may be a $1000 dollar mic. It seems to be switching between omni and cardioid.

Your thoughts?
It's an AKG C414 TLII, about $800, but it's the cheapest mic that will do different pickup patterns. Omni mode gives a nice balanced sound in the one mic set up, but it's not absolutely necessary.

You'd be better off with the two-mic set up, into the mixer/interface. You can still experiment with the one mic set up. Just wait until you find out how to use EQ and compression...
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Old 02-03-2017, 10:39 AM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

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It's an AKG C414 TLII, about $800, but it's the cheapest mic that will do different pickup patterns. Omni mode gives a nice balanced sound in the one mic set up, but it's not absolutely necessary.

You'd be better off with the two-mic set up, into the mixer/interface. You can still experiment with the one mic set up. Just wait until you find out how to use EQ and compression...
I found this too. I guess this is in a lower league tho.

http://www.samsontech.com/samson/pro...rophones/c03u/
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Old 02-03-2017, 04:45 PM
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I found this too. I guess this is in a lower league tho.

http://www.samsontech.com/samson/pro...rophones/c03u/
Samson's are okay for the $$$. However, if needing to go low budget and would like to buy just one mic and nothing else, look into the Samson G-Track USB Condenser Microphone with Audio Interface. It's actually a large diaphragm condenser mic with a built-interface. About $90 USD on Amazon.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0015MJE22..._t3_B000QDF3G2
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Old 02-03-2017, 06:58 PM
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I found this too. I guess this is in a lower league tho.

http://www.samsontech.com/samson/pro...rophones/c03u/
That mic looks very interesting! The omni mode is your friend when doing one mic. When using two mics, you can experiment with cardioid and figure 8 (with this mic in the overhead position).

If you ever decide to get a bunch of drum mics and close mic everything, this mic (in omni or figure 8) can step in as your room mic.

For $99 each you should get two.
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Old 02-07-2017, 12:23 AM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

After much research and machination I think I'm going to pick up a Presonus iTwo Studio and give the one mic option a go.

http://www.presonus.com/products/AudioBox-iTwo-Studio

If this turns out to be pants I can always buy another mic and try the two mic option.

The studio can be had for £149 from Amazon.
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Old 02-07-2017, 12:29 AM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Presonus make good gear. As a 'complete solution' it's quite compelling.

I'd still be tempted to go with something that had more I/O, for more options later on if you could. Even if you only got something with two mic pres that could take an ADAT from a separate mic pre then that would be a good solution.

Just throwing some ideas about. Take them for what they are.
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Old 02-07-2017, 12:32 AM
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Presonus make good gear. As a 'complete solution' it's quite compelling.

I'd still be tempted to go with something that had more I/O, for more options later on if you could. Even if you only got something with two mic pres that could take an ADAT from a separate mic pre then that would be a good solution.

Just throwing some ideas about. Take them for what they are.
All input gratefully received. I just don't wanna throw too much cash at the gear at this stage. This whole idea may be a flash in the pan.

I've found that going for four mic pres at least doubles my outlay which, whilst this makes sense, it doesn't if I hardly use it.
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Old 02-07-2017, 12:40 AM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

Fair enough. I'm constantly amazed at how good some of this gear is.

I'm looking at interfaces at the moment. Tempted by something small and high-end that I can add to later on with a separate preamp but the cash is tight!

The only reason I suggested more I/O in general is that you can get a number of interfaces with only a couple of built-in pres that have an ADAT input at the back. Later down the line you could buy a separate (for instance) 8-input preamp that can expand your original interface. In effect, you're not replacing, you're adding on - so it's a cheaper long-term solution.
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Old 02-07-2017, 12:57 AM
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Default Re: Recording my drumming

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Fair enough. I'm constantly amazed at how good some of this gear is.

I'm looking at interfaces at the moment. Tempted by something small and high-end that I can add to later on with a separate preamp but the cash is tight!

The only reason I suggested more I/O in general is that you can get a number of interfaces with only a couple of built-in pres that have an ADAT input at the back. Later down the line you could buy a separate (for instance) 8-input preamp that can expand your original interface. In effect, you're not replacing, you're adding on - so it's a cheaper long-term solution.
Do you have any examples?
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Old 02-07-2017, 01:05 AM
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After much research and machination I think I'm going to pick up a Presonus iTwo Studio and give the one mic option a go.

http://www.presonus.com/products/AudioBox-iTwo-Studio

If this turns out to be pants I can always buy another mic and try the two mic option.

The studio can be had for £149 from Amazon.
Do you realize the 149 price is for the interface alone and nothing else....right? Unless there's some miraculous deal on your side of the pond which I'm not aware of? No mic, cable, headphones, etc. Add another 100 for the package which includes the other items.

So for the same price, one could buy an AudioBox USB, 2 condenser mics. a few cheap stands and cables. I would imagine you already own a set of headphones.
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