Posted by: kubiakl | February 22, 2011

Setup So Far

I finally got around to buying the Presonus Audiobox that I’ve mentioned before.  It’s a great USB interface that works well with Mac/Garageband; you simply plug it in and go.  When I bought the Presonus I also picked up a Shure SM57 (for close miking amps), and I had an SM58 already sitting around.  The Blue Snowball still gets used occasionally but I usually go with one of the Shures for miking.

The Snowball did come in handy this past weekend when we got together at DG’s house.  We set it up in between three amps – mine, DG’s electronic drum amp, and MM’s guitar amp – and used the omnidirectional setting to capture all three at once.  It worked great when we were jamming for ideas, but you probably wouldn’t want to try and record final productions that way.

The Presonus also improves the direct in sound of a guitar – you don’t have to use a 1/8″ adapter to go to the Mac’s line in port, you plug your regular 1/4″ guitar cable into one of the Presonus inputs and control the output through there.  You can still use Garageband’s amp and pedal simulations, but with a better sound and more control.

I’m pretty happy with the setup I have now.  If it’s late and I don’t want to piss off any neighbors I can plug directly in and get a decent enough sound, or I can mic an amp for a little truer tone.  Going directly in with an acoustic pickup (it’s a Fishman drop in model that you attach in the soundhole) isn’t my favorite but it isn’t terrible either.  Just a little too “sproingy” for my taste.  It is much easier than miking though, so it gets used quite often.

Now that I’ve got some decent recording gear and two amps that I’m pretty happy with, my next project is assembling a Tele.  I’ve had a nice, heavy Tele body sitting around my apartment for two years waiting for me to do something with it; today I finally ordered the parts.  I’ll post more about that later, but just wanted to do a quick update on my recording setup.

If you’re considering a USB interface, the Presonus has certainly worked for me.


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