I am on a Mac Pro, first of all, with standard line-in and USB inputs.
My knee jerks when I consider a USB mic, which I currently have and which is crap. But it’s just a crap mic, I’m reading things that lead me to believe that perhaps it’s not so simple as it appears.
So I need to keep the cost very low, under $50-60, well under if possible, but I want to be able to record decent quality.
Can usb be as good or better than 3.5 line in?
Any and all recommendations and information are very welcome.
Go to B & H or Musician’s Friend, or Sweetwater and pick something.
Get a condenser mic. It uses power from the USB, and has more low and high frequency response than a standard dynamic stage microphone.
Be careful of p-pops. Get a windscreen so you don’t blast your breath right into the mic.
Get a stand, so you can keep a consistent distance from the mic. Get a pair of headphones, and listen to your voice. It will sound different to you.
You hear your voice with mostly bone conduction from your skull. The mic hears what everyone else hears, the air from your vocal chords and mouth resonating in your skull.
The mic is going to be a cartioid pick-up pattern, which means it will pick up sound in front, not much from the side, and hardly any from the rear. So aim the mic away from the background sounds. Keep windows closed, fans off, and keep others away from your room when you are recording.
The mic will be VERY sensitive to ALL sounds. Experiment with placement.
I’ve been a studio engineer for over 30 years. You used to need a soundproofed studio and $10,000 worth of gear to record.
Now anyone can do it.
That’s why I’ve gotten the first day job I’ve had in 14 years. The studio business has slowed WAY down. People don’t call studios to record demos anymore, they do it at home.
BTW, if you want to do professional studio recording in Chicago, let me know!
I majored in broadcasting and trained in voiceover, so I’m hip to the sound of my voice in my head vs. outside of it. But I’ve never been much good at the technical stuff…thank you for the information, I appreciate it.
(My speech teacher told me to drop the class because I didn’t need it, but I still have to be conscious of popping p’s and sibilant s’ in front of a mic.)