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Old 02-24-2012, 01:06 PM
yoda_soda yoda_soda is offline
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Default mac or pc

What do you guys use to record your songs? Mac or PC? I think i want to get an Imac or macbook pro to record. Is garageband a decent program? I don't think i can afford to buy pro tools. Also, i kind of want to get a mac anyways. Are they worth the cash? thanks
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Old 02-24-2012, 01:14 PM
mchalebk mchalebk is offline
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Garageband is an excellent way to get into computer recording. If you're leaning towards getting a Mac, don't feel you need to buy more expensive recording applications. GB is very easy to use and quite powerful.

Most of us Mac users will tell you that Macs are definitely worth the cost. However, I'm sure you'll find many Windows users who feel otherwise. My recommendation would be to do some serious research on which computer to buy. Regardless of which platform you end up with, there are many affordable (or free choices) for recording.
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Old 02-24-2012, 01:19 PM
yoda_soda yoda_soda is offline
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Originally Posted by mchalebk View Post
Garageband is an excellent way to get into computer recording. If you're leaning towards getting a Mac, don't feel you need to buy more expensive recording applications. GB is very easy to use and quite powerful.

Most of us Mac users will tell you that Macs are definitely worth the cost. However, I'm sure you'll find many Windows users who feel otherwise. My recommendation would be to do some serious research on which computer to buy. Regardless of which platform you end up with, there are many affordable (or free choices) for recording.
I was thinking i could just get a new acoustic- electric or an acoustic with after market pick up... then get either imac or macbook pro... and some sort of mic. Then what else would i need? do i have to buy a mixer too? This is all new to me and overwhelming. Do i need to buy a mixer as well. I only really want to do basic home recordings, but i don't want them to sound generic. Is it really that hard to learn?
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Old 02-24-2012, 01:51 PM
mchalebk mchalebk is offline
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My first suggestion would be to not use the guitar pickup for recording purposes. In almost all circumstances, you will get better results with a mic. This doesn't mean you shouldn't get an acoustic/electric or add a pickup to a guitar, just that it's not a very good way to record acoustic guitar.

There are many ways to interface with a computer for recording purposes. The first question you have to ask yourself is: how many sources will you be recording at one time (as in Guitar, voice, other instruments)? If the answer is "one", you might want to consider getting a decent USB mic like the Blue Snowball. For less than $70, you can turn your computer into a recording studio (no other hardware required)

There are many other choices. USB I/O devices are available in many price ranges and often include phantom powered mic preamps. These are good choices if you plan to record multiple sources at the same time. I recently bought a TASCAM US-600, which works quite well. There are lots of other choices out there, many more affordable than this and some quite a bit more expensive.

In most cases, you will not need a mixer (though there are situations that could call for it).
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Old 02-24-2012, 04:02 PM
sachi sachi is offline
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I use a Mac for the little recording I do.

Unless you have some existing abilities with Windows and are comfortable with it, I'd go with a Mac. If you're comfortable with Windows, though, W7 is a capable enough OS.
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Old 02-24-2012, 05:11 PM
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Linux and the wonderful world of open source is also worth a look. AVLinux is a good place to start if you want a distro dedicated to audio.
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Old 02-24-2012, 05:25 PM
Steve Berger Steve Berger is offline
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Mac and Apogee gear is a winning combination IMO.
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Old 02-24-2012, 05:33 PM
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The only downside of macs is the price, if that's an issue. Personally I'd rather build my own PC, run linux, and put the money I save into better mics.

I do agree though: Mac & Apogee is one of the best options you can get for a home studio (but be aware that there seem to be some Lion driver problems right now although I'm sure that'll get sorted out).
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Old 02-24-2012, 05:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yoda_soda View Post
What do you guys use to record your songs? Mac or PC? I think i want to get an Imac or macbook pro to record. Is garageband a decent program? I don't think i can afford to buy pro tools. Also, i kind of want to get a mac anyways. Are they worth the cash? thanks
Hi YS...
Mac and I've been recording with them since the early 1990s.

Hadn't even launched Garage Band since about 2005 till last week, and Apple has turned it into a wonderful program. Easy to use, and configure.

As to your question are they worth the extra cash - my view is yes. No virus issues, or trojan horses, or pop up windows. My wife uses windows at work and Macs at home, and she prefers the Macs, despite the fact she has a full IT department at her disposal at work (she works for the state).

If you are purchasing it from an Apple Store, I recommend you sign up and take a few basic classes there on how to operate it. It will save you tons-o-time later.

Don't do what a friend of mine did who bought an entire year's tutoring. After 6 weeks he'd learned everything he needed to know, and didn't bother to redeem the rest of his lessons...which he'd paid for.

For the most part, straight forward and intuitive operation…and becoming more so with each system upgrade.

I own a $500 interface (MOTU firewire 8 channel) and a $79 interface (ART USB two channel). The ART would be all anyone would need to get started, and the mixing can be done in the software. I have looked at the Apogee, and I prefer an interface with direct interface of mic cables to the box itself, without having to plug in 'dongles' to hook things up.


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Old 02-24-2012, 05:44 PM
KevWind KevWind is offline
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Having used PC all trough the late 80s and 90's in 2003 when I decided to purchase a Pro Tools LE home system. I bit the bullet an took the recommendation to go with a Mac I have been using Mac's since and honestly, have never looked back . Yes you pay a high dollar . However for that you get a high level of performance. IMO mac is definitely worth the price. I am not sure it it's true currently but in the past it seemed to me that to do any task music related video related and many other tasks that take multiple steps, it seems that it often takes 1 or two less steps on Mac.

Yes garageband is a great program to get started recording
You can go with a USB mic and start with no other interface
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Old 02-24-2012, 06:00 PM
mcoliver77 mcoliver77 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yoda_soda View Post
What do you guys use to record your songs? Mac or PC? I think i want to get an Imac or macbook pro to record. Is garageband a decent program? I don't think i can afford to buy pro tools. Also, i kind of want to get a mac anyways. Are they worth the cash? thanks
In case you decide going PC (laptop), make sure you test out how loud the cpu fan is in the store (load several youtube vids and some flash-heavy websites.) If you can hear it kick in even with the all the noise, it'll be a challenge in a quiet recording room.
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Old 02-24-2012, 06:04 PM
sachi sachi is offline
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The only downside of macs is the price, if that's an issue. Personally I'd rather build my own PC, run linux, and put the money I save into better mics.
I'm a bit of a geekette and I've been running various Linux distros for years, on both PC and Mac equipment. My current favorite is Linux Mint (an offshoot of Ubuntu), which I run on an HP laptop. It works reasonably well, but it is far from easy IMO. You have to do a fair amount of research to find what programs you need and then to get them running the way you want them to. Yes, you can build an inexpensive Linux system but you pay for it in the time you spend on it.
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Old 02-24-2012, 06:13 PM
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In case you decide going PC (laptop), make sure you test out how loud the cpu fan is in the store (load several youtube vids and some flash-heavy websites.) If you can hear it kick in even with the all the noise, it'll be a challenge in a quiet recording room.
Hi McOliver...
It simple to extend the cable from the interface box and put laptops or noisy desk models just outside of the room, or behind a barrier, in a closet, or around a corner depending on how noisy they are. The interface box (which contains volume controls and headphone jack) is left in the room with me (or whom ever is recording overdubs).

We are talking a get-started rig, not a sophisticated rig.

This is not involving reel-to-reel tape (which is expensive) but hard drive space, so if it takes up a few more seconds it's no big deal. When using noisy computers in temporary situations, my process has been to prep my guitar and vocal mics in the recording area, walk out out of the room, and hit record.

Then I take my time and walk back into the room, sit down, pick up the guitar and do a count-in verbally. Then with subsequent/layered tracks I follow the same process.

Yes it means you have to trim 20-30 seconds off each end of the track (instead of trimming 2-5 seconds off the ends). Not painful at all and eliminates fan noise.

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Old 02-24-2012, 06:26 PM
Joseph Hanna Joseph Hanna is offline
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[size=2]Don't do what a friend of mine did who bought an entire year's tutoring. After 6 weeks he'd learned everything he needed to know, and didn't bother to redeem the rest of his lessons...which he'd paid for.

Hey Larry,

I need to qualify this just a bit

Some years back I became an Apple Creative. (those that teach the Apple "lessons" of which you speak). I actually did it as an evening hobby and a way to relieve a little stress from the studio side of things. Apple was kind enough to certify me on both Garage Band and Logic. I am no longer working directly for Apple but I continue to consult for them.

The Apple One to One program is $99.00 for an entire year of help...unlimited. The only requirement is you can't schedule a new lesson until the current lesson is over. One could conceivably take as many as 340 (or more) hour long sessions with some of the absolute best Apple trained folks in the world. I though I was good at Mac's but some of those guys (and gals) were powerhouse users. In the end that's roughly 0.29˘ for each hour lesson if one would be so inclined.

Your friend may have learned "all he needed to know" in 6 weeks but I willing to bet my bottom dollar he didn't learn "all there was to know". I've seen folks take advantage of that program (One to One) and become a pretty formidable force as a Mac user. Logic, Garage Band, iMovie, iDVD, Mac's brilliant power point program Keynote, Pages, Numbers and even Final Cut Pro there's an unbelievable depth of knowledge available for a $99.00 buy in. I mean think about a year of UNLIMITED training on Logic Pro or Final Cut Pro for $99.00. There are guys here in L.A. charging that (and quite frankly much more) for a single one hour lesson. It may in fact represent the absolute highest value in technology training anywhere on Earth. There were actually folks down at the 3rd Street Prom that were buying Mac's just to get the Final Cut Pro lessons from some of the Creatives who were also editing up in Hollywood.

I'm gonna take the opposite tract as you and HIGHLY, HIGHLY recommend the One to One program as a jaw dropping, unparalleled value. Once customers understood the depth of what they were being offered many, many maneuvered to get a second year.
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Old 02-24-2012, 06:27 PM
Sage97 Sage97 is offline
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Quote:
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Mac and Apogee gear is a winning combination IMO.
+1.

Add a couple of nice mics and headphones and you're set.
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