I guess I am very lucky I am starting out my Tempe, Arizona Couchsurfing experience with Ira Everett, a young business major at Arizona State University (ASU) who knows a HXLL of a lot about music, and probably knows a lot about many other facets of life as well. Ira's profile came up first on the Couchsurfing search engine--so might as well give it a shot. He and his housemates live in a massive two-story house a couple of miles south of ASU. It turns out that the owner of the house is a drummer for a cover band, and all of Ira's housemates are very musically oriented. Their living room is invaded with top-of-the-line musical equipment--making a very complete set of instrumentation--a multi-grand music studio / band room essentially. The common rooms are downstairs, and the bedrooms are on the top floor.
[BLIP = Just had a Mexican dinner at Riva's about 12 bucks for me and Ira. The least I could do is buy him a burrito!]
After picking into Ira's brain for a little while, I was able to formulate a TO-DO list of items I need to get to expand my music studio kit. I should be able to do this for $500-$1000, given that I rip off Logic Studio from Craigslist. Here are some notes:
**Sam Ash is the best possible walk-in music store. Guitar Center is second rate. Best Buy is converting one of its music sections into a small "Michaels" "music-half-done" component. It's best to buy close to everything used through Craigslist--locally.
**These are recommendations more specifically for MacBookPro (15 inch).
**First of all, to make things run smoothly, update the hardware of the Macbook Pro. Check out how much RAM it has and then upgrade it to 4 GB RAM, 2 GB by 2 GB. DDR2 SODIMM (acronym) the 5400 one. You can purchase this cheap from http://www.newegg.com/.
**For all music studios around the world, you can only hope they have LOGIC STUDIO (2), and then you can always expect for them to have PROTOOLS (.ptls file). Logic Studio has a very user-friendly interface, made exclusively for mac computers. Protools still has problems with it, has advanced to the logic studio interace, but is compatible with PC, MAC, LINUX, etcetera. Logic Studio (pro) is around $500 new and potentially $250 for a pirated-burned version (or via torrents).
**For file backups, consider having a separate external hard drive.
**NEED A MIDI CONTROLLER--Axiom? ($75 two octabes?) The Yamaha Vic has?
**AUDIO INTERFACE--M Audio Fast Track Pro (pro versus fast track is the firewire versus usb port, usb 2.0 goes faster supposedly but firewire is a wider road), should be around $100-200, check out http://www.musiciansfriend.com/, the M-box is an UPPER-END interface
**"plug-ins" are essentially VIRTUAL INSTRUMENTS, Logic Studio comes built in with a series of plug-ins
**consider getting STUDIO HEAD PHONES because you need to be aware of the fine-tuned audio elements; an example is "One More Day" which sounded fine on the computer and a small radio, but when you play it on loud speakers, it sounds off...
**garage-band, built-in musical keyboard....
**the main lines of audio that people hear are vocals-lead melody, high-hat, and the snare... so that is what to consider when making decisions for audio