Ditch the Label—Making a Home Recording Space

From podcasting to actual music production, there are many reasons to invest in your own home recording space. If you set your space up correctly, you can achieve high-quality sound for a moderate budget.

Consider Your Computer
Your computer is the focal point of your home recording studio. Find a machine that is capable of running your favorite recording software. You’ll need something with plenty of processing power and memory to handle plugins and large audio files.
The sound your computer’s fan makes can get into your recordings. Look for a silent machine or see about isolating the computer away from your actual recording space.

Purchase a Microphone and an Audio Interface
You can’t record quality audio without a good microphone. There are many options available at different tiers. If you’re setting up a home studio, you likely only need one or two mics.

Different microphones will give you different sounds. Decide if you plan on recording instruments or vocals. If you’re primarily recording vocals, you want to get a condenser mic with a pop filter to help correct the sound. Instrument recording setups will probably require several microphones and stands depending on the instruments to be recorded.

An audio interface is necessary to connect your microphone to the computer. Choose one with enough ports for every microphone that you plan to connect. You also want to make sure you purchase the correct cables for each of your devices.

Set Up Sound Isolation
You don’t want any outside sound getting into your recording space. Purchase acoustic panels and place them intelligently around the room you plan to record in. Some panels absorb sound while others reflect it, so make sure you place each panel in the correct location. This will help you achieve a sound that is natural and comfortable to the ear.

You should also take as many steps as possible to completely sound-proof the room or the recording area. Common tactics include placing heavy rugs on the floor and ceiling and blocking cracks in doors or windows.

Continue Improving Your Space
A home recording studio is a continually evolving process. As you gain a better understanding of your gear and the recording process, you will naturally want to make improvements to your setup.

Consider using a spectral analyzer or other sound analysis software to see how well you have acoustically treated your room. This software will help you determine whether you have too much reflection or too little and guide you towards improving your setup.
Your final recording studio should reflect the type of audio you record and your knowledge of the craft. Try out different methods and equipment until you find a combination that works for you.