Recording Computers

It's no secret that computers, much like pretty much every other industry in the universe, have revolutionized the audio recording world. It's also no secret that recording computers will hog up each ounce of power they can.

It seems that every time computers just about conquer the demands of audio recording, a new technology, plugin, or possibility creeps up and forces us all to run out and upgrade to the latest in recording computers.

Not only is hardcore performance an issue, but putting together a reliable, bullet-proof computer recording system requires the selection of recording equipment that spans from the motherboard to the operating system to the audio interface. In short, running out and snagging a nice Dell or HP and buying an audio interface may not exactly deliver the reliability you desire. It may! It may not!

Recording computers have one single performance demand that makes them unique. Speed! Before you role your eyes, let me explain. It's not really going to matter to a hardcore Photoshop graphic designer dude if a process takes 5 milliseconds or 100 milliseconds. He won't notice a difference. However, when your singer hops in front of the vocal mic and hears a 100ms delay on their voice, they will either start laughing or start yelling. You have a problem! This is called latency. Few computer tasks view the issue of latency as critically as music recording.

This issue of latency is the sole cause of most audio recording problems and is why it is so important to select the proper recording computer, operating system, and audio interface. This issue of latency is what causes us to need to specialized soundcards (audio interfaces) with specialized drivers. These specialized drivers are what cause issues with different operating systems running at either 32-bit or 64-bit.

The question often arises whether a person should buy a purpose built recording computer by a manufacturer that specializes in recording. For a person with an adequate budget, this is a great way to go! However, I don't feel this is absolutely required. All that is required is a true understanding of the requirements of computer recording so a person can avoid huge potential pitfalls. I go into great detail on this topic of avoiding computer problems in my premium guide, Killer Home Recording: Put Your Rig Together.

Join Cubase Forum
Recording tips and tricks
Getting Started With Home Recording

Are you new to recording and not exactly sure what gear you need? specializes in helping beginners jump into the world of recording. There are about 2,000 traps that can easily waste thousands of hours of your time. Recording Review focuses on giving you the info you need to make the right decisions for you. This is what the Getting Started With Home Recording Guide is all about.

Getting Started With MIDI Production

MIDI production is not just for techno and dance music anymore. The use of MIDI has become an integral part of the recording process in rock, metal, and even country. In fact the only genre's of music that don't utilize MIDI that often are Folk and Bluegrass!

With that said, MIDI can be confusing at first. MIDI brings up a big, new list of definitions to learn and MIDI just seems to play by a different set of rules than convention computer recording. Luckily, I've created the Getting Started With MIDI Sequencing Guide to help you burst through the learning curve and reap the benefits of synths, samples, and MIDI production.

MIDI Production
Steinberg Cubase 4 Studio
Steinberg Cubase 4 Studio
PreSonus FIREPOD Studio Package
PreSonus FIREPOD Studio Package
Waves SSL 4000 Collection Native
Waves SSL 4000 Collection Native
Toontrack DFH Superior Custom and Vintage
Toontrack DFH Superior Custom and Vintage
Propellerhead REASON 4.0 Music Production Software
Propellerhead REASON 4.0 Music Production Software
Neumann TLM-103 Microphone
Neumann TLM-103 Microphone
My Electric Guitar Secret Weapon

For a rock guitar player, there is something about a killer distorted guitar sound that becomes a passion, or maybe even an addition. Of guitar, many beginners in the home recording world have trouble with recording electric guitars. In this member only guide, I'll talk about my secret weapon for recording huge electric guitars.

Electric Guitar
10 Things Every Band Should Know Before Recording

Before any band walks into a recording studio, they had better prepare themselves. There is a lot to learn about the recording process, but taking a few minutes to read this guy could save you thousands of bucks!!

10 Things Every Band Should Know Before Recording is my attempt to get you up to speed on the process of recording extremely quickly! If we can immediately rule out beginner mistakes and make sure you have a clear idea on how the process REALLY works, the odds of your next recording being successful are improved immensely.

Every Band Should Know
Do I Need A High End Mic Preamp?

Don't let peer pressure convince you that you need to dump thousands of dollars into a high end microphone preamp. Let your ears decide! Maybe after listening to this preamp shootout, you can decide if the subtle change in character offered by a preamps is going to be worth the cash.

Take a listen to my Preamp Shootout. With preamps such as API, Great River, Vintech (Neve 1272 clone), Presonus M80, and Mackie 1604 you can listen to the difference between super expensive and super cheap preamps and decide for yourself if you want to drop the cash on a preamp yet or not.

Mic Preamp
Home Recording Soundcard Wizard

The hardest part to choosing the initial gear to get started recording at home is the audio interface / soundcard (same thing). It used to take hours and hours and hours of research to figure out the features you needed. Then it took hours and hours and hours to figure out which brand of audio interface was most reliable. Of course, then, someone would say that X brand is way better than Y brand (which is usually a total lie!). It was a mess!

Now, choosing an audio interface is much simpler. Just go through the Audio Interface Wizard. It'll ask you 10 questions and spit out the audio interfaces that meet your needs in order of price. You immediately know which audio interfaces work for you. Then it's just an issue of choosing the most reliable audio interface that meets your budget. It's easy!

Electric Guitar Microphone Shootout

Do you really need a super high end microphone to get great sounding electric guitars? Here is a shootout I put together with the Royer R121 ribbon microphone, Shure SM 57, Audio Technica AT4033, Sennheiser MD 421, and Soundelux U99.

electric guitar microphone shootout
Home Recording Soundcard Wizard
Find the audio interface for youChoosing an audio interface just got WAY easier!

Home Recording Soundcard Wizard

Latest Recording Blogs
upper hand corrupted/fixed
By gothic_alt on August 7

I wanted to post this version of my mix for...

Synthmaster 2.6 Receives Brandon's Bulletproof Gear Rating
By brandondrury on June 30

Attachment 33819...

The Ultimate Bass / Kick Cleanup Trick Using Multiband Sidechain Compression
By brandondrury on June 8

Alright sports consumers, This is a fun little...

Voxengo Elephant: The Best Damn Brickwall Limiter Plugin
By brandondrury on June 1

Voxengo Elephant is officially on Brandon's...

The Best Mic For Home Recording? An ADK Vienna MK8 Microphone Review
By brandondrury on May 4

Attachment 33581...

The Thrill Of The Deal - Step 1 To Saving Massive Cash On Recording Gear
By brandondrury on April 20

Since Operation Earthworm...

Making Drums More Interesting With The Kitchen
By brandondrury on March 30

Attachment 33363...

Old Recording Computer: Reclaiming Lost Horsepower
By brandondrury on February 26

Attachment 33142...

Brandon Drury: World Famous Again
By brandondrury on February 11

Attachment 32976...

Recording Reviews

Talking about recording is great. However, one thing the internet world is not so good at when it comes to helping people get better at audio engineering is the overemphasis of words. Without a doubt, the best way to get better at your recordings is have them reviewed by experts, peers, and everyone in between.

So, simply Join Recording Review today and post a new song / mix you are working. We'll give you real world advice to drastically improve your music recordings. I love the Recording Review section because it focuses on EXACTLY what the problems are on your mix. It's common for a beginner to say “I'm not happy with the way my mixes are turning out” and a typical, generic response is “Buy better preamps or better mics!”.

Well, that's a stupid way of solving a problem. There is no use guessing with thousands of dollars in equipment when the problem may be the way you are approaching your mix. Maybe you just need to move your studio monitors? Maybe you are recording substandard musicians? Recording Reviews is the fastest way to improve your recordings!