Drum & Bass Help me get started

Discussion in 'Production' started by Souled In, Jan 9, 2012.

  1. Souled In

    Souled In New Member

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    I own reason 3.0 from years ago. Never really got into it though, so I wouldn't mind a software switch.

    I want to be able to record while playing a synth in real time as well.

    I'm looking at this http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/651648-REG/M_Audio_9900_53007_00_Oxygen_61_USB.html

    Then I need an interface right? I had the cheapest interface guitar center had before, but I sold it along with my bad ass nord synth :/.. to pay the rent :)

    I have a pair of really nice monitor speakers and headphones from last time I tried this a few years ago, never been used.

    And then a crap load of sounds, because I won't be happy with a sound that isn't exactly what I want. I'm very OCD and I'll probably give up before using a sound I don't want.

    Love Roni Size, would like to make some trancish inspirational dubstep though, since no one else seems to be very good at it :/... :D

    Just let me know if this is an okay way to get started. Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2012
  2. lostnthesound

    lostnthesound Burns Easily in the Sun

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    Woah woah woah slow down mate :)

    Right. For starters, the DAW you work with really depends on the user. There hundreds (thousands) of us producer like folks on this forum...some like the Mac-only Logic (myself included) while others prefer Cubase, Ableton, and/or FL Producer. I would recommend downloading demos from these companies and experimenting with them to determine what you're most comfortable with...with the exception of Logic, which has no downloadable demo. What separates one DAW from the next is the types of "bell and whistles" they come with (i.e. virtual synths, FX, special features, etc.).

    Audio interface. This really depends on your budget, how many inputs/outputs you require, and whether or not you plan on plugging in a real instrument (i.e. guitar, bass). Personally, I'd look for an audio interface that offers balanced 1/4" inputs/outputs as well as XLR outputs. If you want to plug in an instrument, look for an interface that has a "Hi-Z" input. The more $ you want to spend usually translates to better sounding preamps–the preamps ultimate determine the overall quality of audio when going from analogue >digital and vice versa.

    By record while playing a "synth," I'll assume you meant record while playing a "midi keyboard" as that is what you have setup in your link.

    Since you've got a pair of monitors/headphones, that's half the battle in terms of purchasing gear.

    That's a rough draft startup for you. I would urge you to search the forums also as they're many post dealing with the similar topic. :)

    Cheers!
     
  3. Souled In

    Souled In New Member

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    Thanks a lot! Yea that makes sense.

    I just want to plug in a synthesizer with a keyboard.

    Can I use the keyboard to play as well as use it as a controller?

    I just need an interface for that is all. No other instruments.

    The interface really makes music sound better?

    Would I be able to tell the difference as I play it back in my monitors?

    If so, how much should I spend on a interface that sounds good enough that no non music producer regular music listener people would say "wow that sounds sort of like nintentdo or basic or like something is wrong"

    Do the knobs on a syntehsizer match up nicely with cubase 5?

    Is there any benefit to having two PC's?
     
  4. lostnthesound

    lostnthesound Burns Easily in the Sun

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    Most MIDI keyboards come equipped with atleast a mod wheel and pitch wheel and automatically sync to the active virtual instrument in your DAW. More and more MIDI keyboards are coming with knobs as well to adjust the parameters of the virtual instruments. I don't personally own an M-Audio keyboard (I own the Novation MKii SL 25), but I've heard that the M-Audio's do sync rather nicely with DAWs. When in doubt, check the manufacturer's website. They'll list precisely what DAWs the MIDI keyboard is compatible with and to what extent.

    A better interface allows for better sounding playback (output) in terms of monitoring accuracy due to the quality of its A/D-D/A converters (preamps). To add, it also creates better recordings when feeding an analog instrument (guitar, bass, live vocals, etc.) through the input.

    Audio interfaces are priced accordingly based on the number of inputs/outputs, and most importantly, the type of preamps used. The preamps essentially determine the quality of sound in the Analog-to-Digital & Digital-to-Analog realms. I could go into further detail but would develop carpal tunnel from the amount of typing required :)

    The best thing to do is to do some research by searching this forum as well as google to get some opinion and reviews on audio interfaces. Also, go to a local music shop to demo some of their audio interfaces with a proper set of headphones. Personally, I use the Apogee Duet 2, but that's only because my ears have gotten rather snobbish and need to hear every bit of audio as it's intended. It also records guitar sounds brilliantly.

    For you, I'd look into maybe TC Electronics Kontrol 6 or maybe a Focusrite product. Again, search the boards and look for discussions on sound cards/audio interfaces. You'll get a lot of brutally honest discussions about them.

    The only advantage to having 2 PC's is if your DAW offers any kind of CPU-linking or task-syncing that would allow you to essentially double the horsepower of your DAW. I know Logic has this ability, but I'm not sure about PC DAWs, though I'm fairly confident at least one of them would offer this. Again, check out some manufacturer websites (Steinberg for Cubase, etc.) for specs and details.

    Cheers.
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2012