Want to launch a counterattack against homogenous music? This vocal recording advice can be the place to start, as the lead vocal is usually the lynchpin of the song. Read More.
These simple tips will help you get the best results when you’re recording vocals in your home studio. Read More.
We take a look at the University of the Pacific’s efforts to find a signature vocal mic for the campus recording studio. What they learned might help you choose your next great studio mic. Read More.
Once you have the equipment you need, the next step toward video domination is staging and recording. Part 2 of our Vlogging For Musicians series focuses on setting up for a professional result. Read More.
For music artists looking to build a brand online, videos can factor heavily into a music marketing plan. This is part one of a two-part post with advice on vlogging for musicians. Here, we take a look at the equipment you’ll need to build you video empire. Read More.
A microphone that picks up sound from the front and back is called bi-directional, or a Figure 8 mic, and there are several cool things you can do with them. Read the post.
Microphones are among the most important things in a studio’s arsenal – but don’t get caught up in the “more money equals better quality” syndrome when purchasing a home studio microphone. Like a camera lens, there are microphones that are good for wide angles, others for narrow focus, and there are those that have a vintage feel to them. No mic/pattern combination works for everything. Read more.
Most mics have a fixed pattern — the most common mics used in an audio recording situation are condensers, electret (condenser), ribbon, and dynamic. Read the post.
Before you go microphone shopping for your home recording set up, your first consideration – besides budget – should be, “What will you be recording?” Read more.
Anyone shopping for a new podcasting microphone, or a voiceover microphone, or even a studio vocal microphone should know that the broadcast industry has relied on a very small handful of mics for the past 30 years. Broadcasters know something that you might not: how to get a great vocal sound. Read more…
Many people have a limited budget this year to upgrade their home recording systems. Because of that, it’s helpful to prioritize what is the most important element you need or would benefit from upgrading. If you consider your entire home recording system as 100% of your sound, assuming that you already have a digital audio recording system, then as much as 50% of your sound comes from the quality of the microphone you use. When you purchase your first really nice microphone, you’ll be surprised at what a difference in the overall recording quality it makes. Read more…
There’s been no shortage of products designed to help musicians get their musical ideas into their computers. While at the Winter 2010 NAMM show in Anaheim, I saw the then-new Shure X2u XLR-to-USB signal adapter. It’s a compact, affordable single channel palm-sized adapter that promises to help solve the problem of how to interface a recording mic with your home computer. Read more…
No one was closer to Michael Jackson at the height of his creative powers than Bruce Swedien, the five-time Grammy winner who, with Jackson and producer Quincy Jones, formed the trio responsible for the sound of Jackson’s records. Excerpted from Swedien’s book, In The Studio With Michael Jackson, published by Hal Leonard. Read more.
We took three drum mic packages into the studio for a live showdown.
Although most engineers will tell you they select microphones based on the type of instrument or the tonal quality of a particular instrument, we all have a trusted set of “go to” mics when it comes to recording drums. In the last few years, many microphone manufacturers have grouped sets of drum mics into affordable, easy-to-use packages for both the studio and live performances. This month we put three sets of drum mic packages through their paces to test what kind of performance you can expect. Read more…
Fast Forward’s Pro Studio guru puts four mics through their paces
One of the key elements in any popular song is the vocal performance, and an essential part of capturing a vocal performance accurately is the microphone used in the recording. Top recording engineers know how important it is to match each singer’s particular vocal qualities and timbre to the microphone that will best capture the power and subtleties of that voice. This month, Fast Forward brought four high-quality vocal microphones (i.e. list price of $1,000 or more) into the studio and ran each through its paces, recording male and female vocal tracks and some narration. By the end of the session, you’ll have a good idea of which of these mics may be worth the investment for your home recording studio and what you might want to look for in studios near you. The four contenders include: the Kiwi, from BLUE Microphones; the TLM 103 from Neumann; the Black Hole BH-2 from JZ Mics; and the KSM 44 from Shure. I invited my colleague Jeff Crawford, a local producer and engineer over to provide a second set of ears for the evaluation. Two singers were asked to help with the testing, each one bringing a backing track of a song that they were familiar with to use for the test session. Read more…