recording guitar

hi,guys
i want to record my self playing guitar, i would like to mic the cab and try and record a true sound of me playing, what audio interface do you guys recommend i use??? I intend to use audacity to record my playing,i am open to suggestion,

thanks for your time guys,
bluesfloyd,

Comments

  • JockoJocko Posts: 7,012Member, Moderator
    I use a Behringer UCG102 USB Guitar Link. Costs about £30 from Amazon.
  • LesterLester Posts: 1,619Member, Moderator
    What's your budget, bluesfloyd?
  • bluesfloydbluesfloyd Posts: 22Member
    Lester said:

    What's your budget, bluesfloyd?

    hi,
    i would say £200 that would get me up and running yes/no ????

    all the best,
    bluesfloyd


  • LesterLester Posts: 1,619Member, Moderator
    If you want to record clean guitar and then add effects, amp and speaker sims in Audacity then Jocko's suggestion is one possibility.

    A more common setup will allow you to record the sound you hear coming from your cab. The Shure SM57 is a great mic for that and is the no. 1 top selling mic. You will require an audio interface such as the Focusrite Scarlet 2i2. Having 2 channels it will leave your options open for the future, should you wish to record a second instrument or a voice at the same time or if you would like to record something in stereo. By the time you buy an XLR cable to connect the mic to the audio interface and a short stand for the mic that is likely to be nearer £250. I have not hesitated to include these products as they have excellent reputations and will keep your options open for the future. To keep it under £200 you could opt for a cheaper, single channel audio interface such as the Alesis Core 1 or choose a cheaper mic such as the t.bone MB 75 (which is a copy of the SM57), or both to really keep the cost down.

    If you have further questions, just ask, as it can feel a bit daunting until you have some experience and a good feel for what is low price and what is just low quality.
  • JockoJocko Posts: 7,012Member, Moderator
    Yes. I forgot that I also have one of these - B-TECH BT26 Phono Stage / Microphone Pre Amp - at £22, plus a mike and stand. My mike was considerably cheaper than the Shure SM57 Lester suggests, but I just record for my own enjoyment, so high quality is not a priority.
  • bluesfloydbluesfloyd Posts: 22Member
    hi,
    thanks for your help so far, I intend to use audacity to record my playing, what other recording software do you guys use/ recommend ?

    bluesfloyd.
  • LesterLester Posts: 1,619Member, Moderator
    edited January 2017
    Reaper would be the main one to consider. It is open source, free to try for 60 days and then only 60 US dollars should you wish to continue with it.

    Audacity, as a raw program, is basically just an audio recorder with some editing options. I hear that there are many plug-ins that can boost its ability to that of a proper DAW, so that would be another possibility.

    I use Apple Logic because I started with it 24 years ago and I am still happy with it. It's great, currently £150 and only runs on Apple computers.

    My opinion is that all DAWs have a lot of features and therefore take some time to learn how to use and so shifting from one to another is not as easy as switching which guitar you play. You would do well to check out reviews of the other DAWs and buy the one you feel would best suit what you want - and then stick with it and get to know it inside out.
  • JockoJocko Posts: 7,012Member, Moderator
    I use Reaper. It is a great piece of kit, and once you pay for your license you get regular updates. I find they update it about once a month. You can also install it on to a USB stick and swap it between computers if you wish/need.
  • Mark PMark P Posts: 2,314Member
    Lester is right - switching between DAWS is not easy, and is often a pain in the ass. Even an upgrade to a new version of a DAW has been known to leave me struggling for weeks to "get" quite the way the new one works.

    As a result I've stuck with a particular DAW, admittedly through 3 versions, over the last 5 years+. Samplitude Music Studio. It was the only one of several DAWs I tried on a Vista laptop I had the misfortune to have to try and use as my music recording computer - most of the software I tried just wouldn't work on it. The previous PC running XP was never a major problem with recording and the same can be said for my current Win7 PC. But I've lost the energy to battle with trying to get something new to work ... if it ain't broke ...... !

    I'm not convinced that unless you go really upmarket you're likely to get much difference in sound quality from different DAWs - it's more a case of finding one that works in a way that feels intuitive to you as an individual and that is properly compatible with your hardware. Unfortunately it's a bit trial and error to find one that meets those two criteria.
  • waylonwaylon Posts: 44Member
    This is my favourite
    https://musicsquare.co.uk/134588_Alesis-iO2-Express-interfejs-audio-USB.html
    If you want something cheaper, try this one
    https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/Alpha
    I don't know why, bt my behringer UCG102 don't work with my PC. I have drivers, but I don't have sound.
  • Mark PMark P Posts: 2,314Member
    It's very frustrating when a piece of hardware refuses to work with your computer, and the time taken in trying to sort it out is a pain and a half. There seems to be so much pot luck in it - either it's likely to work or it isn't and there's no way to tell till you've bought the thing!
  • JockoJocko Posts: 7,012Member, Moderator
    You can only hear the sound through the headphone socket of the UCG102 otherwise you have to save your music as a wav or mp3 to play it via the computer.
  • Kevin PeatKevin Peat Posts: 3,091Member
    I found learning to use my Boss multi-tracker more difficult than learning to play guitar !

    Recording is an art in itself, is it not ?
  • Kevin PeatKevin Peat Posts: 3,091Member
    What I would love is a band-in-a-box type thing for PC. So I can do whole band compositions in a virtual studio. As simple but effective as possible please. I'm quite happy to have just a basic band so long as I can Lord it over them, they don't do drugs and they turn up on time !

    Any recommendations ? (Have I asked this before ? My memory is awful these days.)
  • Kevin PeatKevin Peat Posts: 3,091Member
    ... I listen to drum 'n' bass type music and think, yeah. I could do that. In the shower I'm always doing bass riffs and wish I could get them down. Alas I've forgotten them by the time I've got my socks on.
  • LesterLester Posts: 1,619Member, Moderator
    edited January 2017
    Kevin, I use Band-in-a-Box. It is clearly a Windows program that the company has never managed to port well to the Mac OS but I am still using it after 20-odd years. Its best point is that I can get a song's chords in and have a basic backing track in about 2 minutes. I find it great for practising, great for getting song ideas down. I choose to export MIDI files so that I can adjust and fine-tune arrangements in my DAW but as the years have rolled on the program has more and more capability built-in. You can buy a range of Band-in-a-Box packages, the larger ones use real audio which can sound better. It covers a wide gamut of artistic styles but I am not sure that drum 'n' bass is really one of its strong points. Maybe other, more modern programs cover the DnB, house, rap and other ultra-modern styles better. Maybe.

    As for getting ideas down as they occur, I bought a small, cheap dictaphone and carry that around with me for just that purpose.
  • Kevin PeatKevin Peat Posts: 3,091Member
    Thank you Lester
  • nicholaspaulnicholaspaul Posts: 891Member
    Jocko said:

    I use Reaper. It is a great piece of kit, and once you pay for your license you get regular updates. I find they update it about once a month. You can also install it on to a USB stick and swap it between computers if you wish/need.

    Another vote for Reaper from me. I've tried Cubase (hated it...) and use Garageband for quick comps, but obviously that's just for Apple.

    ... I listen to drum 'n' bass type music and think, yeah. I could do that. In the shower I'm always doing bass riffs and wish I could get them down. Alas I've forgotten them by the time I've got my socks on.

    …stop wasting time with socks! If you have an Android/iPhone there are quite a few apps that do drumming. I like to compose on Figure and iMaschine (both iPhone...). For 'real' rhythms (recording and playing live) I use a Korg drum machine, but that's hardware not software.

    So, as for the original question, bluesfloyd, I can highly recommend Focusrite Scarlett series. I have the 18i8 but they have 2 input models too. They all have fantastic preamps and with an inexpensive mic (or the SM57 that Lester recommended, which should last you a lifetime) you'll be doing just fine.
    For recording I don't mic a cab, I just go direct and use the amp models in Garageband or Amplitube in Reaper. That way you can edit the sounds after recording the dry signal.
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