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Level1 Musicians


I'd really like to get good at mastering, it's sort of like a subtle bass riff -you don't think about it when it's there and done right, but it's really noticeable when absent!

Haha, that would be such an honour to theme! Thanks man!


I remember when I wasn't so great at mastering. It's not the easiest thing to figure out, but it feels great when you do finally get it down.


Hello I'm new to this blog and I was hoping for some advice I want to start making my own music and I really don't know where to start. As for a budget I have $1,000 to spend I know that it might not be much but that is the most I can spend right now. I have decided on a laptop because I have seen that they are more useful for someone like me, with a laptop I will be able to go around and jot down idea's that I have as for a desktop I can't, also I have heard that an Intel Core i3 is really all that I need that and at least 8 gigs of ram and a Solid State Drive. Also is a video card necessary would it be as intense as video editing or would I take less. Next what type of software will I need I have seen some but I don't know which are right for me. I have seen some like FL Studio and it looks like something that I could use. Finally what other thing will I need like I said before I don't know where to start what to buy and I was hoping to build up in the future. Thank you for all your help in this and I'm looking forward to what you have to say.


Welcome, friend.

So, you would like to put together a rig for music production, yes? Well, for starters, I'd go with an i5 over an i3, as some plugins can be quite demanding (I'll go over this a little more when talking about software), and you're gonna want some headroom. As far as RAM goes, 8GB may be enough, but I myself would go with at least 16GB just to be on the safe side. I do recommend going with an SSD (from what I've seen the Samsung 850 EVO's are really reliable, so I'd look into getting one or two those). Assuming you don't intend to game on this rig, pretty much any video card will do (though if you plan on doing video editing on this rig I recommend going with a professional video card (AMD FirePro, or Nvidia equivalent), as well as at least 32GB of RAM and an i7, but let's not turn this into a Build a PC thread, shall we?).

As far as software goes, I myself use FL Studio, so of course, I recommend that. It comes with some really good plugins and is very flexible (though some of the plugins can be a bit hard on the CPU, which is why I recommend at least an i5).

I do recommend picking up a sound card or audio interface as well (both serve the same purpose so there's no need to get both). You'll get better sound and you will need one if you plan to record lives instruments or vocals.

I hope this helps. If you need pointers for specific hardware, or if you have more questions in general, feel free to ask. I, or someone else, will point you in the right direction.


I'm currently running a i3 in mine, but with time I'll be able to get a i5 or i7. I'm still trying to grab FL Studio before I leave to the east coast at the end of the month.


Not done, I'm going to add in an organ track (with solo). But in the mean time, whudaya think?


Sounds groovy man! I like the feel and rhythm of it. Me being an old drummer I have a question though, how did you record it? Sounds like you stuck a mic at the hi-hat, snare and kick. This is normally only done to accentuate an accent to the kit sound. The sorta feel of the kit is best obtained by overhead mics, which should be the default mic, and then accent mics come in as additions. This will also help to even out the quite noticeable volume gap between the closed and open hi-hat. Of course some editing post recording will be necessary to assure they are aligned properly and setting volume levels and such. Just FYI before you venture into this, if you record it as a band in one take, overhead mics on the drum-kit must be shielded from the rest of the instruments, so they won't leak into the drum recording, this can be done with a plexiglas cage you see in live studios, or blankets and such (and so that the overly loud drums and hats won't leak into the vocal mics, for instance).

PS edit: Just found this neat write-up of how to record drums. Might give you some more concrete pointers. Don't be put off with all the talk about different mic types, your mics may not be perfect, but playing around with the setup can often give you acceptable results. Listen to your mics and play around with positioning them, find out what their strengths and weaknesses are and try to adapt to it. Be creative :)


I put a mic on the kick, the snare, and one overhead. Hats were really loud because I compressed the shit out of the drum track, and that really made them really pop out. I kinda like the way the sit in the mix tho, so I just left them.

In editing I do have the drums split into two tracks however, one for the lowend and one for the highend. I did that to cut some nasty grungy sounding mids out of the hats. (It's a cheap hat) So I could potentially turn the hats down a little if it bothers enough people.


Ahh I seem that's what happened. Well, I would turn the hat down and the kick and snare up, but that's just my preference :)


Alright, so I added in the organ track, I think to keep things interesting in the first half I'll do a little moog "solo."
(p.s. does the organ seem too loud? to quiet?)


That bass line.... So good.


Why spank you kind sir!


Watched Back to the Future... Was inspired!


Hey again. I don't think the organ is too loud, quite the contrary. I'd give it a much more prominent space in the mix. I'd also turn down the whole drum track a bit maybe. It really is a bit loud compared to the other instruments. Nice organ theme though :)


Awesome bassing! Fender P Bass by any chance?


I did turn the organ up a tad, and thanks.


It's actually an Ibanez SR series. (I have the flagship model from the mid 90's)


...I have no clue what I'm doing honestly. I doubt I'll be able to turn this into something worthwhile anytime soon, but I guess that's part of the 1-month challenge and it's all for fun anyway. I'll finish it somehow, but to make up for it I'll also post my homemade pedals/PCB designs. Would it be okay to post them here or should I just post them in the diy section?


It's completely fine with me if you post them here, bro.


I have have been a violinist for 6 years, going on 7. I play with the South-Western Collage Youth Symphony and was assistant principle chair for the jazz/pop orchestra in the same program. I am working on my singing voice (I can sing everything but death metal and Celine Dion, or other high pitched stuff.) I can sing as low as A2 (Its not great but meh) and as high as C6 (Again not great, but meh) I like fooling around on the guitar, but i really want to learn base guitar. I also know a bit of piano (real simple stuff)