Sunday, May 13, 2007

What inspired me to start this...?

Frankly, I'd been answering all the same questions over and over again and thought if they were all in one easy to find location, I could just point people there. I didn't get around to starting it until I came across this great post by Rick Barr on the CrunchGear site.

As I wrote a comment I thought, 'here I go typing the same stuff all over again'. So I decided to start this blog. Still, Rick did such a wonderful job outlining a lot of equipment similar to mine, I thought it only fair I give him a nod here.

Here's my reply to his article (am I allowed to quote myself?)...
Great article.
I couldn’t agree more about BOSS Digital recorders. I have the BR-1180-CD ( and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
I already had an Shure SM-58 (who doesn’t?) but I also sprung for an Audio Technica Studio Condenser Mic which, honestly, is a difference of night and day in terms of dynamics ( Mind you, I built myself a sound-proofed studio which helps a lot. If you’re in an area where there is any kind of ambiant noise, don’t bother with this condenser mic. It’ll pick up *and amplify* the pics I fiddle with in my pocket as I stand there singing. It’s that sensitive.
You say “The 4-track and microphone are pretty much all the hardware you will need…” but I think a cheap old second hand stereo (the kind with the big floor speakers) plugged straight into your digital board is a great (cheap) way of getting a feel for the sound quality and level you’re aiming for. Most of us (I think) grew up on those big monsters, so we know what they should sound like. Saves you having to burn a CD or transfer your stuff out onto some other media in order to really have a listen.
The kicker (pun intended) here is that the BR-1180-CD version comes with its own integrated drum machine that does everything described above. But if you can’t go that route, you might as well check out the open source option posted in a comment above. I like open source… here’s why:
Once you’ve transferred your files onto your computer, I recommend Audacity ( It does everything those other (co$tly) options do. No question. I’ve done it. As an example… a few years back I hired a recording engineer to digitally remaster some old songs that I had on cassette from many moons ago. It cost me $400 for one tape and the resulting CD is nowhere near the quality required for resale (or radio for that matter). With Audacity, I spent $0 and was able to digitally remaster the same songs to the point that I’m actually considering not re-recording some of them. It’s that good.
The money you save on not buying any software will make the cost of the BR-1180CD more attainable.
Good luck!

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