Tag: Mixing

The Top Seven Programs For Recording & Mixing Music


Do you want to create your own computer based home music recording studio? If so then you’ll need a quality program for recording and mixing music. You will be using one of the following seven programs a lot so you will definitely want to make a wise decision and choose the software that best fits your computer, your audio interface, and your needs.

First of all I want to focus on those with Mac computers (and yes whether you have a Mac or a PC will play a huge part in your decision of which music recording software to buy.)

If you own a Mac and do not yet have an audio interface then a Digidesign Pro Tools set up is probably what you’ll opt for. You can get an audio interface of varying sizes (from as few as 2 inputs to many more) and prices. If you plan on just recording yourself then you’ll probably want to get a one of the fewer input systems (an MBox.) If you plan on recording a full band then of course you’ll want to get a high input (and higher price) option.

For the full-on “professional” version of ProTools you’ll spend about $ 15,000. If that’s in your price range and a truly professional studio is what you are interested in building, then this may be the right choice for you but it’s really not necessary for most. You can get a great sound without that big setup.

If you own an MOTU audio interface already then you may want to get MOTU’s Digital Performer which is Mac only software and of course works very well with their audio interfaces. You’ll likely have a very stable system if you choose this option.

If you do not yet own an audio interface you may wish to consider buying an MOTU audio interface and Digital Performer (they do not come together like with Pro Tools, you’ll have to buy Digital Performer separately.) This is alternative to buying the limited version of Pro Tools that comes with their cheaper audio interfaces.

Another option for Mac users is Apple’s Logic. It’s designed to work with Mac computers and is a very strong program for working with audio as well as for working with MIDI. You will need to either already have an audio interface or buy one to work with it.

How about for PC users? Well first of all, Digital Performer and Logic are off the table as they are Mac only programs. But what about Pro Tools? It does work with PCs but it does not yet work with Windows Vista. Also it generally works better with Macs. If you’re on a PC I’d recommend going in a different direction.

Just as with the Mac there are a couple of music production programs that are PC only. These include Cakewalk’s SONAR which is a great choice if you are into working with MIDI (it also does great with audio as well) and Sony’s Acid. Acid is for creating loop based music such as Rap/Hip-Hop and techno. It’s not really suited to other styles of music so you should only consider it if you are into creating loop based music.

There are also programs which work great on PC & Mac: Steinberg’s Nuendo and Cubase. Nuendo is Steinberg’s high end system and it currently costs $ 1800 in stores. It’s great for those who want to work with surround sound and those who work on music with video (it has a video component.) It’s a very high quality piece of software but you should make note that it isn’t particularly suited for working with MIDI, if you are big MIDI lover then you should probably get Cubase instead. Cubase is actually about three times less expensive than Nuendo, so that’s good news for you!

I believe each of these seven programs are available for free in demo form so that you can try them out without buying them. This is probably a good idea because each program has it’s own peculiar quirks and you’ll want to choose the program that “fits” you.

But please be aware that it’s normal for there to be a bit of a learning curve with software such as this. So don’t give up right away. You may even want to read the manual!

Johnny Moon recommends that you buy your music production software online. Shop for MOTU’s Digital Performer , Steinberg’s Nuendo , & Cakewalk’s SONAR online.

A Visit To Windmill Lane In Dublin
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Windmill Lane is covered in graffiti from fans who have paid pilgrimage from all over the world, many attracted by the studio’s historical connection with U2. Initially the graffiti was interesting but is now a terrible mess and the quality of the art is not as good as it was.

Windmill Lane Studios, also known as the "U2 studio", is a three-storey music recording studio located in Dublin, Ireland. It is located on Windmill Lane, a small street just south of City Quay and the River Liffey and a little north of Pearse Station. It was opened in 1978 by Brian Masterson who is a company director and head engineer. It was originally used to record traditional Irish music until U2 came along and began to record there. Prior to this, Irish rock bands such as Thin Lizzy or The Boomtown Rats carried out their recordings outside Ireland.

It is now boarded up, with the actual studios having moved elsewhere. Nevertheless, the studios are still a popular cult symbol and are regularly visited by tourists, particularly those originally from the United States.

Pulse Recording College recently took ownership of the studios. The college has previously sent students to work at Windmill Lane straight after graduation and these students have collaborated with 50 Cent, Bryan Adams, Moya Brennan, Donovan, Jon Bon Jovi and New Order.

The studio is no longer located on Windmill Lane, although it retains the name. Windmill Lane Studios has not been located on Windmill Lane for quite some time and the current facility was originally Ringsend Studios in Ringsend, Dublin 4. Plans to construct a six-storey office block on the old site led to criticism from local resident groups in early September 2008.

The studio remained empty from 2006 onwards, although reports circulated which linked Van Morrison with purchasing the studio for his own personal use that August. Morrison had previously recorded several albums there, including Back on Top, Magic Time and Pay the Devil. In January 2008, the studio was used to record "The Ballad of Ronnie Drew". In 2009, Pulse College took over Windmill Lane painstakingly renovating the studios which are internationally perceived as being at the heart of the Irish recording industry. The renowned multimedia college has now transformed the facilities with state-of-the-art equipment which encompasses not only 3 fully equipped recording studios, but also a creative hub for Digital Media Training in areas of Music Production, Film Production and Game Analysis and Design.

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