Updated: May 5, 2020

March 2020

25 years ago, you would have needed a professional recording studio to do what you can do at home today.

The technology, since the beginning of multimedia, has reach such a level, you can record music professionally on a small budget. The questions for musicians who would like to produce their ideas are: How to start? What kind of budget? What kind of gears?

To the second question, home studio equipment is coming in all prices, but you do not need to invest in very expensive gears to start.

First, as the name says, the studio is at home and home may be an apartment. Your studio is usually in a small room and If you are like many musicians we know, you may like working late and want to avoid any disturbance with your neighbors.

Place foam modules on your walls to absorb the echo and sound that may be loud at times. You may work with a headset but if you need sound adjustments, nothing’s better than monitors.

Cannot work without a computer. PC or MAC is up to you, MAC seems to have the preference of many musicians. You may use your current computer/laptop, make sure the processor is fast and the memory substantial especially if you use the computer for other purpose.

You need to provide your computer with a workstation software also called DAW (digital audio workstation), allowing to record, mix, sequence, add effects, modify, fade, etc.

As a beginner, Reaper, Logic Pro or Studio One are used by many amateurs but if you have professional ambitions, the industry standard largely used by professionals is Pro Tools. Complete, it could be complex to use but many tutorials are available online.

In most cases you will generate the instrument sounds via a midi controller directly connected to your software but should you want to add the analog recording of a guitar through a microphone, you will need an audio interface that will transfer your analog signal into a digital one. The keyboard controller does not need to be 88 or 73 keys.

The last items are: A pair of loudspeakers specially made for studios also named monitors. Monitors have a wide definition allowing to hear a large spectrum of frequencies. They can be very expensive; their quality will help you do better mixes. Choose monitors function of the size of your studio and budget.

You will as well need sets of cables to connect your gears and a headphones.

Overall, if you start from scratch with a new computer and without breaking the bank, you can start your own studio for less than $5,000.00. Of course, if you add sound banks such as spectrasonic, it can add up pretty fast. It is a lot of money for many but think how much an hour of pro studio renting would cost you…