A Beginner's Home Studio Guide

Do you want to follow your dream of producing your own songs but believe it is really expensive? That it will take months to put together? Well, your first recording could be days away.

If you have a dream to record and produce your own music, then, welcome and yes you can! The songs I have produced are a testament to what is possible if you have the passion and the planning. I started out, like you, with a dream and having a home studio was key to my dream being realized.

To get started you only need a few basic essentials which you can add to over time or upgrade depending on your goals and how much of the studiocraft you want to take on. So let's look at what you need to think about.

Your home studio does not have to be complex

Studio Equipment Quality

The first thing I would say is to keep it simple. Though keeping it simple does not mean you can't produce a quality production. There are many topics to learn about so having a simple setup helps to stop you being buried under a mountain of studio recording concepts and technical jargon.

However, keeping it simple doesn't mean keeping it cheap. The industry e.g. digital distribution stores like iTunes, radio stations and mix and mastering services expect a certain standard of quality. To maintain quality in your productions you need to have a decent standard across all your studio equipment.

So when purchasing equipment for your home studio don't go for the cheapest of the cheap unless this is your only option. If you do, recognize that this may limit your options for promotion and/or the commercial viability of your production.

Your home studio design will depend on your
choice of studio space

Home Studio Design

You need to ask yourself a couple of questions before you embark on kitting out your home studio.
  • What will I be recording
  • Where is my home studio going to be?
  • Why am I doing this? Is it long term or temporary, should the studio be permanent or mobile?
Your answers will affect the choices you make for your setup.

What will you record? Compare a singer-songwriter to a 5 piece band. Without even considering space you can probably envisage the need for more microphones, headphones and cables to record the band.

Where you will be recording will decide how much space you have for equipment and musicians. If it is noisy more soundproofing will be needed. Bear in mind that even with soundproofing if you have neighbours they could still be affected by the sound and conversely their noise can affect the quality of your recordings. If you have a choice a bigger space gives you more options.

Why do you want a home studio will decide how easy you want to be able to dismantle and re-assemble your studio. For example, if you want to find a bigger space in the near future you don't want to spend a fortune on soundproofing that may have to be left behind. This can also impact your choice of equipment e.g. desktop or laptop.

Success depends on planning and preparation

Home Studio Planning

You may have heard the mantra 'Fail to prepare, prepare to fail', well, planning and preparation are key to reducing the problems you will come up against. These can be more expensive to resolve the later they emerge.

Create a list of the tasks (a plan) to be carried out and the purchases to be made. This helps to control the budget and decision making. Always keep in mind the what, where and why.

One of the good things about having a plan is that it motivates which is why planning leads to success.

Your First Home Studio Essentials

Now that you have a plan the first task is to clear and prepare the area or room in readiness for your equipment.

Check out this link to the main website article where you will also find the basic studio equipment essentials. They will deliver a simple functioning studio where you can hone your skills and then expand as your skills, experience and requirements grow.

Good luck