Want to record your next song, EP, or album from the comfort of your own home? Here’s what you need for your home recording studio setup.
To record your tracks, a computer is essential. I know that seems obvious, but it does need to be said. Here are 3 great options for your home recording studio.
Top of the LineNew Apple MacBook Pro (16-inch, 16GB RAM, 1TB Storage, 2.3GHz Intel Core i9) – Space Gray
You absolutely cannot go wrong with a new Macbook Pro. With a 16-inch retina display and a processor “working at the speed of though,” you can get pretty much anything done without lag-time .
Mid-RangeApple 13in MacBook Pro, Retina, Touch Bar, 3.1GHz Intel Core i5 Dual Core, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, Space Gray, MPXV2LL/A (Renewed)
Save a bit of money and still get that Macbook Pro quality by buying pre-owned and renewed. You get a smaller screen and less storage space with this one, but plenty to get you recording.
AffordableSAMSUNG XE350XBA-K01US Chromebook 4 + Chrome OS 15.6″ Full HD Intel Celeron Processor N4000 4GB RAM 32Gb Emmc Gigabit Wi-Fi, Silver
Samsung makes incredible products…and for this price?? In my opinion, it’s not quite as good for recording as a Macbook Pro, but it will definitely get the job done.
2. DAW – Digital Audio Workstation
This is the software used to record, edit, and mix your audio tracks.
Top of the LineAvid Pro Tools Ultimate – Complete Audio Studio Production Software Suite (Download Card)
Pro Tools is the industry standard DAW. It’s definitely not cheap, but if you want industry standard, this is the one for you.
Logic Pro is the Apple DAW. You can download it in the Apple Store for $199.99 with in-app upgrades.
AffordableAbleton Multitrack Recording Software, Green (Live 10 Intro)
Ableton Live 10 Intro is the best DAW below $100. There are 2 more expensive versions, so it really just depends on what you plan to do with your recording.
There are free options like Garageband and Pro Tools First. They are easy to use, but they don’t have nearly as many tools.
3. Audio Interface
You will need something to connect all of your musical gear to your computer. Here are 3 options for audio interfaces.
Top of the LineUniversal Audio Apollo Twin X QUAD Heritage Edition
There are MUCH cheaper options out there, but the Universal Audio Apollo X4 Heritage produces incredible sound. If it’s in your budget, go for it! One thing to note, this is Thunderbolt 3 compatible only.
Mid-RangeFocusrite Clarett 2Pre USB 10-In/4-Out Audio Interface
Focusrite makes great products for a fraction of the price of the Apollo.
AffordableM-Audio M-Track Solo – USB Audio Interface for Recording, Streaming and Podcasting with XLR, Line and DI Inputs, Plus a Software Suite Included
If you have minimal needs for your home recording studio, M-Audio M-Track Solo is the way to go. At only $49, you can’t beat it.
4. Studio Headphones
You want to hear that mix, right? Get yourself some good studio headphones…
Top of the LineSennheiser HD280PRO Headphone (new model)
For only $99.95, these are the industry standard headphones. No, they don’t look great…but we aren’t shopping for Beats. You want the best sound for your mix, and this is it.
With the industry standard at under $100, I don’t think others are necessary, but I will link a couple more if you want options.Sony MDR7506 Professional Large Diaphragm Headphone (International Model) No Warranty
Beyerdynamic 459038 DT 990 PRO open Studio Headphone
Top of the LineShure SM7B Cardioid Dynamic Microphone
This mic is great for recording vocals and for podcasting or narration. It is a unidirectional cardioid dynamic microphone with a built-in pop filter, so there is no need to purchase one. I have used this mic before and I wish I could afford one right now.
Mid-RangeShure SM58-LC Cardioid Dynamic Vocal Microphone
This is the most popular studio mic, and it has been for a long time. It produces great sound at a great price. $99!
AffordableBlue Yeti Nano Premium USB Mic for Recording and Streaming – Blackout
The Blue Yeti is far from the best mic, but it is affordable and it is a USB mic…so if your setup doesn’t require an audio interface, you can plug this right into your USB port. I’ve used this one before as well. Again, not the best sound quality, but it gets the job done on a budget.
6. Studio Monitors
If you want to hear what your mix is going to sound like outside of your headphones, studio monitors are great. You get to hear what your mix really sounds like. They are also great for rehearsing vocals. Here are some options.
Top of the Line
This set of monitors comes highly recommended for their accurate and clean sound.
Mid-RangeAdam Audio A5X Powered Studio Monitor
For about $10 less, these monitors are great for a larger setup.
AffordablePresonus Eris E3.5-3.5″ Near Field Studio Monitor (Pair) (E3.5)
For a smaller setup, and a very affordable price…these are perfect.
7. Audio Cables
If you want your mic and your monitors to work, you’re going to need audio cables. No need to categorize these into budgets.
8. Midi Controller
These keyboards are portable and work with your DAW to give you the sounds you need.
Top of the LineM-Audio Hammer 88 | Premium 88-Key Hammer-Action USB/MIDI Keyboard Controller Including A Studio Grade Software Suite
88 fully weighted keys give you the closest thing to a piano that you can get!
Mid-RangeArturia Keylab 49 Essential Controller Keyboard
This 49 key controller has everything you need for your home studio at a very reasonable price.
AffordableM Audio Keystation Mini 32 MK3 | Ultra Portable Mini USB MIDI Keyboard Controller With ProTools First | M Audio Edition and Xpand 2 by AIR Music Tech
32 keys and incredibly portable. You can accomplish a lot with this little guy.
9. Microphone Stand
No need to categorize these, and it is obvious what they are for.
10. Pop Filter
To soften those Ps and Bs, you’ll need one of these. That could be a song.
There we have it. If you are looking to put together your own home recording studio during this pandemic, everything you need is right here!
If you have used any of these items, let me know what you think!