Hey guys and gals! Hope it's going fine. As the title suggests, i will be giving some tips on "quality recording" with your ordinary home PC equippments and an acoustic guitar. I am doing it because I got atleast a dozen of PM asking how to record better. So i thought about making a thread and tell how to . I request the mods, FLs, or Admins to make this thread sticky so that everyone can use the informations later. I would also like you people to contribute in this thread. So, here we go..
BASIC REQUIREMENTS :-
1. A good quality computer Microphone- It generally costs about 200 to 400 INR in India. If you can afford to buy a outdoor microphone, that would be the best but it's not nessessory for home recording. This can cost from 850 to 5000 INR or even more. So, the choice is yours.
2. Sound card- A built in sound card will do for an ordinary recording. If you want to use advanced features like MIDI inputs etc, you need to buy a good sound card for that. I suggest Creative Sound Blaster sound cards because they are cheap and yet, they can deliver the quality you need. These approximately costs 2000 INR or more.
3. Recording software- Do not use windows default recorders because they suck. You have a better option than using that sucking thing, use Audacity. It is a freeware and it's much much better than windows sound recorder. It gives you better editing features and also, unlimited recording time. Visit http://audacity.sourceforge.net/ for the latest version. But, if you really want to get the punch, you should use multi track recorders. For example, i use Guitar tracks pro. Unfortunately, these are not freewares. Now, don't give replies asking for the links to these softwares. But, you can always PM me if you want any help on this issue .
4. Creativity-Yes you need it. It's the most important thing to do anything!!
HOW TO RECORD :-
There are few things to keep in mind when you are recording..
1. The vocals and the guitar and etc should be clear enough.
2. There should not be any humming or Hiss or any type of unwanted noise. Though it can be very tough to do this, but you can do better if you follow what I tell you to.
3. Some basic effects such as reverb or echo(Don't use it if you can not control it, because if it is used wrongly, your whole recording will go in vain.) should be used.
When you are recording, keep one thing in mind, your recording should be as clear as possible.
There are 2 ways of recording:-
1. One shot recording
2. Multi track recording
1. One shot recording
For this type of recording, Audacity is enough. It means that you just record what you want in a track and then add the effects and make the song. The problem with this way of recording is that you can not undo anything such as, you can not make the voice a little louder or you cannot re-record a verse again etc. If you are using this way, be sure that your guitaring or voice do not suppress each other because you cannot edit it later and also give your best shot when you are recording. Keep the Microphone in almost same distance from your guitar and mouth and try to sing loud. Don't keep it too close to your Mouth or to your guitar or one will suppress another.
2. Multitrack recording
It's the most convinient way to record your songs. With this kind of recording, you get better control over the recording such as, you can re-record, add chorus, add effects with better output, increase or decrease the volume of your vocals or your instruments etc. This is why, this process is used in studios. Only problem is that, you need better equippments to record and also better softwares. Anyways, you can also record in this way with your ordinary equippments, this is how you do it:-
I suggest you to use Cakewalk Guitar Tracks Pro to record( see the basic requirements section). To start recording, first open the software and a screen with some box kind of tracks will come. Those have many functions, but don't worry, you don't need any of those except the (M, S, R) and the Volume Slider. To start a recording,you need to at first Arm a track(Haha, it's a war!! ). press (R) to do that. Now, if you are recording the guitar part of the song, keep the mic as close to the guitar as possible (But don't keep it inside the guitar or the sound will start to crack). Now start the recording by pressing Record button. (P.S.- If you don't want the metronome, go to option >Project >metronome tab> clear the Recording check box.). Now it's time for recording your voice. Before you do that, be sure to switch off the Arm option on that track. Enable it on another track. Now start recording. Let me tell you a secret of getting crystal clear voice without the hiss although it may seem pretty unorthodox. Take a piece of cloth e.g. a handkerchief and wrap it around the mouthpiece(Try experimenting it in order to get the optimum result.). What it will do is that, it will suppress all the external noise and only record your voice. Now, keep the microphone close to your mouth and record what you want. Now comes the editing part. If you want to modify the recording, switch to Waveform view (Press the button below this one"|||")and use the Cut Paste etc options. Now switch to normal view again(Press "|||")add some basic effects such as Verb etc. To apply those effects, right click on the 'screen' of the track and go to Audio Effects > GT :FX and use those effects provided. I only use the verb effect for the vocal part. This is a settings for Verb you can use, but try experimenting:-
Room size- 60, Pre delay - 3.2, Low cut - 550, High cut - 4.6, Decay time - 2, Hf decay- 4, Diffusion- Default, Width-160, Proximity - 38, Level - 6
Your Recording is ready!! Just serve it hot or chilled!!!
Any comments / Suggestions / Corrections /Additions?????