mbliss wrote:Heres a quick beginners list-common things NOT to do
1. Don’t Record At 16bit If You Have 24
We have 24 bits now, and we want all the headroom we can get. Use 24 bit audio and record at lower levels, that way you don’t have to worry about putting your recording into the “red”.
2. Don’t Record In The Red
In the analog days people used to overload their pre-amps a little. Just to get that sweet sound. Well, there is nothing sweet about digital clipping. Don’t record in the red when you are recording digitally; digital clipping sounds horrible and you can’t fix it. As stated above, record at 24 bit and enjoy recording at lower levels.
3. Don’t Record With bad Cables
They might not matter as much as the microphone or type of pre-amp, but effect the overall sound. Try to avoid using the cheapest cable.
4. Don’t Record Wet
More maximum flexibility and best results, consider recording dry. If Needed, add something to the headphone mix from your software to compromise.
5. Use the Right Microphone
If possible, don’t use a cheap dynamic to record vocals and then wonder why the vocal track sounds so bad. Even though dynamic microphones might work for some vocals and styles, chances are you need a decent condenser instead. Use the right microphone for the job, and if you have access to a few, try them out.
6. Position Yourself Correctly
Acoustic treatment and a great sounding room are a big help, as well as positioning the microphone correctly. Standing in the middle of the room holding a cheap dynamic mic wont get you a good sound!
7. Waves of Phase
Are you recording with two microphones? Make sure they are not causing phase problems. Phase cancelations make your signal sound thin and weak. Most DAWs have an “inverse” setting where you can flip one of the tracks 180°. Try that to see if the signal gets stronger. If it does then you were having some phase problems during recording and should work on your mic setup technique.
8. Don’t Record Tracks In A Hurry
Some artists work well under pressure. Most don’t. Don’t expect to be able to get all the vocal tracks for an album in 2 hours. Don’t plan for efficiency, it never works. Things will go wrong, people will show up late and you won’t be able to record everything you wanted. Get used to it and don’t record in a hurry.
9. Don’t Record At The Highest Possible Sample Rate
Higher sample rates mean more space and the difference between 30 tracks at 48kHz or 30 tracks at 192 kHz is a whole lot of hard disk space. The highest sample rate and the most ideal sample rate might not be the same. Being reasonable wont hurt your results in a home or portable studio setting.
10. Don’t Record Bad Instruments
Drums with new heads and guitars with new strings sound much better. Replace them and tune them before you record for better results.
And a tip I feel really helps me from time to time:
Sometimes you need to focus on listening and become too focused on your DAW's screen. Turn off the video monitor or turn away from it and listen to your mix. Quit focusing on the curser and waveform or meters and just listen to your mix. Let your ears tell you the truth.
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