Compiling a “studio on the go” has never been so easy or affordable
Being able to easily and quickly record your material at a moment’s notice is one of the key advances technology has provided musicians today. But just how easy is it to take that recording capability with you when you travel? Following is an exploration into the basics of setting up a “studio to go, ” centered around an affordable laptop computer. With the advice of recording engineer Bob Furlong, we’ll find out just what you need to record anywhere and anytime the spirit moves you.
How steep the learning curve is for a musician or songwriter new to recording?
I get that question, “How hard is it to learn?” pretty often. I have to say that from the time I got into analog recording, when you had to wade through hundreds of pages of operation manuals just to figure out how to record, that today it’s exponentially easier to jump right in and start making good recordings almost immediately.
For the studio-to-go concept, I’d suggest a package of gear that’s easy to transport centered around a newer laptop. It would have six main components: recording software, audio interface, a good all-purpose microphone, monitor speakers, an external hard drive, and some kind of gig bag to protect your gear when you’re on the road.
Starting with the software, which will really be the heart of your mobile studio, there are quite a few programs to choose from. But for someone new to recording, I’d suggest Ableton Live, a program I’ve gotten to be a big fan of. One of the advantages is that Ableton offers a wide range of tutorials and “how to” videos, both on their web site and actually included as part of the application, that take the new user step-by-step through set up and recording techniques in an easy-to-understand manner. I’ve used a number of other recording programs myself before I tried Ableton Live, and I found it to be very intuitive, yet powerful enough to do whatever I wanted to do.
Ableton Live comes in three versions: the Live LE version; the Live version, which covers everything I need at my studio; and Ableton Suite, which adds ten virtual instruments and a number of sample libraries to the Live version.” [Editor’s note: the street prices for the three versions are $149 for LE; $499 for Live; and $799 for the Suite.]
Playback Sound - Laptop soundcard
Hi, I want to be able to playback muic on my laptop while using a webcam, like a webcam chatroom I'm hosting. For my desktop computer (pc) it came with creative wave studio and I guess the card and basically I can select to use that instead of a microphone for sound and it comes off as clear sounding as what i'm listening to--I also use it to record music off radio streams, etc and to produce/ edit my music.
So what's good for an hp laptop for the same feature, I'm guessing I need to buy software and a new sound card. All I want to be able to do is play music using the internal playback feature instead of from an outside microphone so that the sound is like I hear it and is transmitted flawlessly
I got this for 2100
Apple MacBook Air 13.3in Display 4GB Memory Laptop A2500S2
Intel Dual Core i5 Processor (1.7GHz)
4GB Memory and 128GB Flash Storage
13.3" Glossy TFT LED-Backlit Widescreen Display
Total Unibody Aluminum Construction
NVIDIA GeForce 320M Graphics Processor
Rechargeable battery; Up to 7 hours of portable battery life; 45W MagSafe Power Adapter; Measures .11 thickness; Weighs 2.9 lbs.
Built-in Stereo Speakers; Omnidirectional Microphone; FaceTime Camera; Multi-Touch Trackpad
Mac OS X Lion Operating System; iLife '11 Software Suite
AirPort Extreme Wi-Fi Wireless; Bluetooth; 2 USB 2