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Everything you need to know to set up a home recording studio

A post by David Mellor
Saturday November 05, 2005
What do you need to know to set up a home recording studio? How can you make your studio capable of professional results? How can you avoid expensive mistakes?
Everything you need to know to set up a home recording studio

Everything you need to know to set up a home recording studio...

'Everything', in this sense, is a bit like 'infinity' - it's difficult to gauge its extent. But Audio Masterclass is here to help. Undoubtedly you would like your home recording studio to be capable of professional results. But the very fact that the studio is in your home adds further difficulties.

Here are just some of the issues facing would-be home recording studio owners...

  • Soundproofing. If your studio disturbs others, it is not going to be a practical place to work in. Also, if sound from outside disturb your monitoring, or get onto your recording, then you are not going to achieve successful results.
  • Acoustics. The smaller a room is, the harder it is to achieve good acoustics. You need good acoustics for two reasons - firstly so that sounds you capture with a microphone sound good. Secondly so that your mix will sound great wherever it is played.
  • Traffic. This doesn't affect everyone, but if you have ever tried to record a rock band at home, you will know what impact the simple coming and going of people and equipment can have. Also, imagine if you had an expensive session booked with a pro singer. How would it be affected if other people were coming and going around the house? One of the key features of successful commercial studios is that they can handle traffic of vehicles, people and equipment. And once in the studio, they are a calm place in which to work.
  • Interruptions. Sessions in successful commercial recording studios never get interrupted for any reason - there's a story about Bono from U2 not wanting to be disturbed by a persistent caller. It turned out to be the Pope! Achieving a non-interrupted state in a home recording studio is much more difficult.
  • Equipment. Home studio owners can rarely afford the same equipment as commercial recording studios, although items such as microphones can sometimes be hired in, depending on where you live. Also, people who work around commercial studios gain insider knowledge - they see people coming and going with different equipment and get to learn what works, what doesn't and which equipment is good for which purpose. Manufacturers schmooze them too and let them borrow stuff to try out.
  • Practicality. Commercial studios spend up to 10% of their budget on installation and wiring. How many home recording studio owners spend as much? The result of a neat installation is a studio that is slick and versatile, saving vast amounts of time and energy.
  • Cost. The cost of providing all of the above is significant. Any home recording studio owner has to balance out how much income they can make from their studio, or how much they are willing to spend on their hobby.

You may have realized that to cover everything you need to know to set up a home recording studio is too large a concept to fit into a single feature.

But Audio Masterclass would like your input. What are your concerns regarding setting up a studio? What questions would you like to ask?

audiomasterclass.com plans a major exploration of this topic, with much of the information being sourced from people who are successful in the industry.

Please send your one most burning question about setting up a home recording studio to

The ten Audio Masterclass visitors who send in the most searching and practical questions will receive access to the eventual fruits of our labors free of charge!


Submissions for this offer have now closed.

A post by David Mellor
Saturday November 05, 2005 ARCHIVE
David Mellor has been creating music and recording in professional and home studios for more than 30 years. This website is all about learning how to improve and have more fun with music and recording. If you enjoy creating music and recording it, then you're definitely in the right place :-)
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