Gear

STUDIO SETUP 2015

After experiencing a debilitating crash of the laptop I’ve been using to make music since 2002, and deeming it unsave-able, I switched over to a desktop running Windows 8.1.

Acid42 gear diagram 2015

STUDIO SETUP 2011

I don’t play live anymore, limiting myself to recording and arranging music at home or on the road. There isn’t much difference to my setup at home or on the road, as my rig is now pretty much mobile. I arrange using my Evolution MK-449C MIDI controller keyboard at home, and then I record vocals and anything else on the USB soundcard — a Lexicon Alpha plus my Shure microphone. And that’s pretty much it!

A diagram of my mobile music setup

STUDIO SETUP 2006-2007

At home, where wires can be strewn about any which way, my setup is basically one that allows me quick access to my laptop and my Evolution MK-41 USB controller.  I hook everything up to my Creative Extigy external soundcard. Monitoring is done on an Altec Lansing 2.1 computer speaker system. Or my AKG K-66 headphones.

Live Setup circa 1997

LIVE GIG SETUP 2004-2007

At live gigs, where speed of setup is often essential, I have often had to make do with my laptop, and that’s it (with BOME’s mousekeyboard as a virtual keyboard via my QWERTY keys). More recently though I’ve been able to the Evolution MIDI controller plus my lovely Boss Sp-202 sampler for hands-on sampladelia.

Live gig setup

CURRENT EQUIPMENT

HARDWARE: 

  • Asus Desktop 1.8Mhz Quadcore, 8GB RAM
  • Lexicon Alpha USB Soundcard
  • Shure microphone
  • AKG K-66 headphones
  • Evolution MK-449C USB controller
  • Altec Lansing 2.1 multimedia speakers

SOFTWARE:

  • Propellerheads Reason
  • Samplitude Silver
  • Sony Acid Pro
  • Sony Sound Forge

USING REASON FOR LIVE PERFORMANCE:

A few years back, I wrote a PDF tutorial on how to use the software Reason for live performance. I never got to update it, so it’s circa Reason version 2.5, but it still has some interesting tips on how I personally use Reason in a performance set-up. Here it is.

Comment:

4 thoughts on “Gear

  1. Matt says:

    Hi, thanks for the diagram. I’m really new to recording, so would like to ask you for some advice. I have a Shure SM58 Mic and I’m using the free software program Audacity because I have a low budget. I’m thinking of buying a Lexicon Alpha as the audio interface. Have 2 questions:

    1) How would the Shure mic connect to the Lexicon Alpha? The cable I has attached to the mic starts with the female XLR head to connect to the mic, and ends in the normal pointed thing (sorry i can’t describe it) that mic cables end with. I noticed the Lexicon Alpha has a port for “mic” but it ends with a female XLR part, which means the mic cable won’t be able to fit there? The Lexicon Alpha has another port that looks like it can fit the mic cable, which is labelled “instrument” is that the right port? I’m a bit confused

    2) I’ve read online that Audacity doesnt work well with Lexicon Alpha, just wondering if that is true and what to do about it.

    Cheers and thanks for your help!

    • Hi Matthias,
      1. Your mic cable is an XLR to 1/4″ jack. And it would probably work with the Lexicon Alpha via the “instrument” port, but since that port is ideally used for amplified instruments (guitars, keyboards, etc) your output will probably be lower in volume. You could simply boost /increase volume while recording. However I highly suggest simply buying an XLR to XLR cable for your mic — you’ll be able to use it with any mixer if ever you perform live, and your mic signal might be cleaner.

      2. Audacity should work fine. I myself have not tried using Audacity on the Alpha. But make sure you update your Alpha’s drivers immediately after installing. Also, ensure you have the latest version of Audacity.

      The forum posts I found online regarding having problems between the two sound to me like basic errors with the setup of audio on the computer and are not a compatibility issue between the hardware and software.

      Also, this might help in case you’re looking for an alternative to Audacity > http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/6-awesome-alternatives-to-audacity-for-recording-and-editing-audio/

      I really love the Alpha, as the recording quality is excellent, it’s portable, easy to use and has all the inputs I could need. I highly recommend it! (and no, I don’t work for Lexicon!)

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