Audio recording

Recording At Home Part 2 Workshop Addendum

This workshop, presented on Wednesday, September 23rd, was the second workshop in a series focused on recording high-quality audio in your own home. Besides providing the basic information about the hardware and software required for recording audio, the motivation behind this workshop was to provide an effective framework for building one's toolkit of audio recording equipment, with financial responsibility in mind.

Those who record their projects at home are most likely doing so out of necessity rather than choice. This is because recording in an untreated home is always less preferable to recording in a professional studio, even if for no other reason than concerns for acoustic quality. This also means that finances are very likely a concern when choosing what resources to buy/use for recording an audio project. The first thing one should consider when deciding which pieces of audio equipment (hardware or software) to invest in is the needs of the artist creating the project (or your own needs, if you are the artist). This will help determine which parts of a recording setup are most important to you, and therefore which pieces to invest the most money into.

For example, if you plan to do a lot of recording with vocals or acoustic instruments, it would be most wise to spend less (or no) money on things like a premium DAW (digital audio workstation) or third-party plugins. These software elements of a recording setup have no effect on the inherent quality of the audio that is being recorded. This would allow you to invest more of your budget into a high quality microphone and preamp combo, to ensure the captured audio is as clean as it can be. However, if you make most of your music using samples, electronic instruments, or recorded sounds to be edited, then the previously suggested scenario doesn't make much sense for you. Instead, you would likely be much happier with a simple and inexpensive USB microphone, which eliminates the need for a preamp. This would allow you to instead invest into a premium DAW like Ableton, along with some third-party samplers, sample packs, MIDI peripherals, or other virtual add-ons to expand your electronic music toolkit.

Hopefully, this workshop as given those who are recording at home a more clear picture of which pieces of equipment are most important for their needs. This should help achieve high quality and also minimal cost for recording audio, regardless of the format or intended outcome.

Check here for info on future workshops:

Digital Media Toolkit: Workshops

Digital Media Design Studio Closing August 21st

The Library’s Digital Media Design Studio (DMDS) closes its doors on August 21st. Beginning on August 26th, most of the Studio’s services will be distributed elsewhere in the library, while construction of an innovative landscape of improved facilities and services gets underway. Here is how we are addressing key services:
  • Basic audio and video recording rooms will be temporarily available on the first floor in while construction for an improved suite of studios are built for spring term. Reservations to use the temporary studios will be available through a new booking system.
  • Multimedia workstations with a full suite of software are available in the Digital Media Commons.
  • Media equipment, such as video and audio recorders, will be available for check-out from the new first floor Help & Information Desk.
  • Instructional sessions, workshops and support for multimedia projects will continue to be available to you and your students, either in your classroom or library location, as appropriate. Learn more about instruction here.
  • We will assist you with media reformatting, duplication and digitization requests, in partnership with Terry Beadle of Academic Technology Services.
  • Unfortunately, we will not be able to assist with off-air recording requests during the fall.
Staff offices are also changing in September. Temporarily, Thomas Bary and Jonathan Iannone will reside in 260 SL, adjacent to the 2d floor Digital Media Commons (DMC). Library and Information Services student staff will continue to provide a wide range of media and printing services from the DMC Information desk. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns. Let’s discuss how we can work together to meet your research and curricular needs in the coming school year. Debra Mandel   Associate Dean (Acting), User Services 320 Snell Library (617) 373-4902 d.mandel@neu.edu