Recording Project this Autumn – Need a Digital Recorder, Vocal & Drum Machine

shortlink here:

I want to record a new collection of songs this Autumn beginning around November 1.  I am seeking musicians who would like to help me.  Guitarists, bassists, singers, percussionists, and I am seeking a producer.  If you are any of those please email me @ .

I don’t ask for much but in case the above doesn’t materialize  }:

I am looking for a digital multi-track recorder with at least 4 tracks but probably not more than 8 and it needs to function portably and independently of a computer, but the audio files need to be easily portable to a DAW on a Windows computer.  I will need a drum machine and possibly a vocal harmony processor depending on what I come up with.  I seek your opinion on this.  I need to record a new cd this autumn and the songs are coming.

I am looking at the Boss BR800.

I am also looking at the Tascam eight track DP 008 and the Zoom H4n and the Zoom R8.    I need to stay under $500 for this I am not rich.   I like simplicity and the Tascam seems to be a nice simple 8 track recorder, which is twice as good as 4 tracks.  At my skill level I think more than 8 tracks would be overkill, wasted functionality.

Here’s a review of the Tascam DP-008 EX

And I am also looking at the Zoom R8:

I have been looking at these for a week now and I am leaning towards the zoom R8 because I like the drum pads.  In theory at least I will be able to create human sounding drum tracks with it rather than the deadening mechanical sound that is typical of electronic drum tracks.  Its a real plus.  The Boss has a decent drum editor too but no pads.  The Tascam DP 008 EX seemingly has no drums.

For vocal processors I am interested in harmony not pitch correction but all of these boxes have pitch correction.   I am looking for smart harmonies and I am looking at the TC Helicon GXT and the Electro Harmonix Voicebox.

And since we are talking about electronics, mixers, recorders, signal processors and stomp boxes I am also taking a look at the Zoom A3 acoustic guitar pedal, since I am an acoustic or acoustic/electric performer.   I find myself playing venues now that require amplification and I don’t have a sound man.   These kinds of boxes offer lots of tone control and feedback control as well.  I have discovered that acoustic  electric guitars can have some weird feedback problems.

There are a few other solutions besides lucking onto a producer or recording myself on one of these little boxes.

One thing is I could get a DAW and load it onto a computer and then learn how to use it.  And down load and intstall all the plug ins.  Actually I already have Audacity, and I have actually recorded my guitar and voice (through my laptop  yech ) and also a click track.   I can tell you I don’t think I have five years left JUST to learn some software, and ProTools etc must be just as fascinating.  I could buy a Mac I have heard that the audio processing on Macs is easy and great but I don’t think I can afford a high end Mac, I don’t think I can even afford a high end windows machine with a sound card, my current machine is a $500 laptop and I am skeptical of its audio file horsepower so this solution is out without major $$$.

Also I have wondered about online recording studios.  It turns out that there are some, both free and fee.   This is intriguing but I will have to investigate further.  You can google “online recording studio” and tell me what you think.

An interesting sidenote about this digital era.  Well musicians and engineers are two totally different kinds of people with different minds but technology has now given us the means to be both things at one time.   It is difficult for me to see how this works because I want to spend my time making and creating music, not on the technical aspects of recording it.   So more or less a standalone box is probably best for me, while a pro engineer will find a Boss to be very limiting and will want a full blown DAW.  The thing is some of these products try to triangulate and satisfy both populations but it will be difficult.  That’s why I will prob go with a standalone box.

4 Responses to “Recording Project this Autumn – Need a Digital Recorder, Vocal & Drum Machine”

  1. Zoom estimates that if you record in stereo at 16-bit/44.1kHz, you will get 6 hours of recording time in normal mode and 11 hours of recording time in stamina mode. During our battery life test , we achieved 4.4 hours in normal mode recording at 128kbps mp3 and 7.7 hours in stamina mode recording at 16-bit/44.1kHz. The Zoom H4n sounds good. The built-in mics are relatively quiet. The mic preamps are fairly clean.

  2. Studio Pros is a team of LA-based world-class music professionals ready to record, mix, master and produce your tracks. Its the perfect sound youve been looking for, and its just a click …Studio Pros is a team of LA-based world-class music professionals ready to record, mix, master and produce your tracks. Its the perfect sound youve been looking for, and its just a click away.

  3. Anonymous Says:

    Jessie, you don’t understand, Bill wants this stuff FOR FREE.

  4. I stumbled on your post by accident. I just returned a Boss BR-800 back to Amazon. Weird quirks. I will record four mics at once but only one can be phantom powered. If you want to record two mics at once, neither one can be phantom powered, they have to go in tracks 1 & 2 or in 3 & 4, and they are recorded “stereo” which means that track 1(or 3) is automatically panned hard left and 2(or 4) is hard right. You can fix the pan after the fact, but it’s a pain and if you record the tracks again the pan will go back. Also, the deal breaker for me was that when you are recording a mic, you have no control over it’s volume in the monitoring mix. So you can’t cut it back to control feedback, except by turning the master volume down, which means you can’t hear the other tracks. So you better love your headphones (which I detest). Like I said, I sent it back.

    I have the Tascam DP-008ex and it’s a little basic, but workable. I was hoping the Boss would be a step up.

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