Getting The Best Quality Without Mixing!
A lot of rappers and singers are under the misconception that you can record a song with the worst equipment and it doesn’t matter cause they will fix it in mixing and mastering. That is the complete opposite of the truth and I don’t want you to fall into that trap.
I have mixed dozens of artist’s tracks and the hardest ones (the ones that won’t come out sounding good anyway) are the one’s that have the worst quality to begin with. The reason is because music is not alchemy, you cannot turn something already bad into a masterpiece. If you were a chef with the worst quality beef you are not going to throw seasonings and the trimmings on it and make a decent hamburger. The starting product must be fresh or else the whole song is ruined.
Of course there are people who cite Soulja Boy’s rise when he was making Crank Dat and it was all distorted. Soulja Boy was a unique case but don’t expect the same results for you. Most likely no one will take you seriously if your quality it bad. To them you will just be another want to-be who spams their page with “NEW HOT MUSIC” and it turns out it just gives them a headache.
Now I know you guys have great material and it’s important that you express it with the world. You must have authority for people to want to listen to you though. That’s why getting the best quality before hand is starting out on the right foot and it will be much easier to gain a fan base like that. It will also be easier to sell more of your music and merchandise.
- Microphone & Cable
These 2 items are crucial in recording audio of any kind. If you want great quality before you mix you need to invest in a great low cost microphone (I have a post on my home site that has a great list from you to choose from) and a great microphone cable. Artist’s usually think of the microphone cable as the least thing they need to worry about but in more ways than one it’s more important than the actual microphone. Do yourself a favor – invest in a Monster cable and make sure people are not stepping on it!
This will connect your microphone to the computer. Your recording tends to be better when there are less connections from the audio source (ex: The microphone to cable) to the recorder (ex: Pro Tools on your computer). That means invest in one that has USB or Firewire capabilities – not only is it fast loading but will give you a powerful edge quality wise.
Don’t overlook the quality of the beat either, if the beat quality is bad it will drag down the whole song. Buy exclusive rights to the beat from the producer and get the mix handled by a professional. If that’s not possible do not use that beat at all!
Before I close this out I just want to mention that if you’re on a tight budget you can get great quality at a low cost. I have a post on my site about the best cheap microphones I advise you to check out. After that, you will need the best microphone cable and preamp you can afford. If you do all those 3 things correctly there should be no issue with the quality of the vocal after that.