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Thread: Please help me get into hardware!

  1. #1
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    Please help me get into hardware!

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    Peace to all FP fam.

    So I been producing for a while now, but only using software like Ableton Live, Reason 3.0, FruityLoops, SoundForge, etc...
    I want to take my stuff to another level, since I feel like I'm missing something... maybe the organic feel that hardware transmits.
    I'm really ignorant in this matter so I hope y'all enlightened heads can help me out!

    I want to build a home-production studio, on a low budget:
    -I would like to get a sampler/editor to sample, play and edit drums or breaks and loops (MPC vs SP?) (stuff like DJ Premier, RZA, Beatminerz, Pete Rock use)
    -A keyboard to play some synth and melodies (Korg vs ASR-10?) (stuff like J.Dilla, Just Blaze, Dr. Dre, Illmind use)
    ...and other stuff I might not know of! I guess I will need a turntable to sample from vinyl, and I don't know what the hell monitors are, nor "16 track"...

    Also soundcards: I guess I should go for Pro Tools? Which model y'all recommend that includes a good soundcard on a low price?

    Obviously I plan to study on this, buy books and all... but I just want to know what the general feel is before, to know better where to head at when buying material.

    Hope y'all can help,
    PEACE

  2. #2
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    What’s wrong with Ableton Live, Reason 3.0, Fruity Loops,
    If you need something to feel on you can get midi controls
    Like a midi keyboard or midi pad control.

    but what your budget you trying to work with

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    Yes I see what you mean, you do have a point. My plan is to continue workin' on FL & Reason, but using an MPC or SP to make my samples more organic and hard hitting, a nice and simple MIDI keyboard to play basslines and melodies, and sampling from vinyl.
    AND a very good soundcard is a must: I see like 5 different versions of ProTools but I just don't know which ones are recommended... plus the HD ones start at 8000 dollars.

    The budget... hum maybe between 5000 and 10000 USD.

    What do you reccomend me? And what the hell are monitors lol...

    Thanks for the reply.

  4. #4
    Chi Guest
    This is what I think of your budget..............


    LEts see what we can do.

    If you wanna do things like Rza, he has roland products that he likes to use. If u wanna get real serious, u could go for an MV8000, or maybe even the newer version. I would settle for an MC909, but yea, rza uses an MV8000 sumtimes.


    What are u trying to produce? R&B? If so i would go with a yamaha motif. BUt if you want more of a dirty sotuh vibe, go wit a roland fantom as a keyboard. Tritons are kewl to, its all on what you want.


    I would throw some monitors in there to if you want an accurate mix. Try some Krk`s. You can get the RP5`s to save money, but any of the KRK`s are great monitors.

    For your soundcard, I would settle for http://www.zzounds.com/a--2676837/item--MDOAP192
    assuming that your using a computer to seqence your hardware.

    And any turntable is kewl, just as long as it has a line out so you can get it to your comp and sample into some program like Audacity.

    shoot, i think im missed your 10,000 budget, lol. I didnt go over it. This is my oppinion, you can change stuff around, but this`d be a good setup for me. Maybe a mixer and some sound modules would help, but thats basically what I would do with the "small budget" you have.

    HAVE FUN!!!! I KNOW I WOULD!!!! ^_^

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chi
    This is what I think of your budget..............


    LEts see what we can do.

    If you wanna do things like Rza, he has roland products that he likes to use. If u wanna get real serious, u could go for an MV8000, or maybe even the newer version. I would settle for an MC909, but yea, rza uses an MV8000 sumtimes.


    What are u trying to produce? R&B? If so i would go with a yamaha motif. BUt if you want more of a dirty sotuh vibe, go wit a roland fantom as a keyboard. Tritons are kewl to, its all on what you want.


    I would throw some monitors in there to if you want an accurate mix. Try some Krk`s. You can get the RP5`s to save money, but any of the KRK`s are great monitors.

    For your soundcard, I would settle for http://www.zzounds.com/a--2676837/item--MDOAP192
    assuming that your using a computer to seqence your hardware.

    And any turntable is kewl, just as long as it has a line out so you can get it to your comp and sample into some program like Audacity.

    shoot, i think im missed your 10,000 budget, lol. I didnt go over it. This is my oppinion, you can change stuff around, but this`d be a good setup for me. Maybe a mixer and some sound modules would help, but thats basically what I would do with the "small budget" you have.

    HAVE FUN!!!! I KNOW I WOULD!!!! ^_^
    LMAO you crazy man... but thank you very much for the reply

    So basically you think a Roland MV model sh*t's on any MPC or SP-1200? I know what you mean though, I forgot that one... RZA would not exhange his Roland MV for nothing, neither Pete Rock with his MPC nor Da Beatminerz with their SP-1200!

    I'm trying to produce hardcore Rap (Pete Rock, RZA, Stoupe, DJ Premier) mixing some more commercial flavor (Just Blaze, Neptunes, J.Dilla), I mean depending on the beats I know The Neptunes use a Korg Triton keyboard, while others the ASR-10.
    I just wanted a keyboard to drop some ill basslines or some synth over samples, I don't plan using it to produce tunes from scratch. So a simple keyboard would be nice!

    And thanks for the M-Audio soundcard, I'll definatly go with that since it seems great! Yes a PC is what I'm using, and I will keep using software as well.

    Thanks for all your tips, I appreciate that a lot!
    RESPECT man!
    Last edited by Pson101; 02-11-2007 at 12:06 PM.

  6. #6
    Chi Guest
    No prob.


    I mean, if you just want some nice synths and some good stuff for basslines, u could alwayz save space and get a nice sound module, like a motif es rack which dont go for too much (especially if u get it on ebay.)

    I just really like da MV because it comes wit Roland sounds. I think an MPC just comes wit drum sounds (like, da roland will have synths I thinK.)

    Roland Fantom is really good for makin some manny fresh soundin beatz, considering thats what he uses, lol. He uses alot of stuff though, u might wanna download da minimouge VST online somewhere, dat makes a good sound.

  7. #7
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    hmmmmm with a $10k budget there is alot you can do. Honestly I would start with what you need first though. What type of room are you working with? Is it treated? If not that would be a good place to start. Then get yourself a quality pair of monitors. KRK are nice but if you are working with that kind of budget at least step it up to HR824's. Then as far as recording goes I would just get a digi 002 setup and call it a day. The one with the control surface. Then for hardware. This is what I would probably get.

    MPC3k.
    Rackmount sampler that supports multisamples.
    Motif, Triton or Fantom module or modules.
    Analog or analog modeling synth.
    You got plenty of choices for a turntable.
    A nice controller. Maybe CME?

    I know it's kind of general but it all really comes down to preference. I like the older MPC's because they were built better than the newer ones. If you want that grit you could go with a 60. The sp-1200 has a dope sound but it's still pretty expensive and is really limited. I would only use it for drums.
    Cameron Thomas Productions

    "Let me catch you abusing the culture I adore and I'll come across the hall and get involved"

  8. #8
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    I was in a similar situation about a month ago. I was using Reason, Ableton, and SoundForge (to record from decks). I started switching to hardware and did a lot of research on what to get -- before you spend $10K, I really recommend you spend some time researching. I love the FP board for advice, but nothing beats spending a lot of time researching reviews and spending time in the store figuring out what you need.

    I ended up getting a Focusrite Saffire soundcard/interface because the recording quality was higher than others in its price range (about $3-400). I highly recommend it after using it, but I wish there were more inputs. My reading was not all that favorable to Mbox Pro 2. I don't want to start a debate, but I wanted to use Ableton and a good interface for that... if Pro Tools is your route, more power to you. It is an industry standard.

    I went with a Motif ES8. I checked out the Triton Extreme and Fantom, but at the end of the day, you can customize a machine the way you want it over time and I liked the feel of the Motif better. But, it was a hard choice - I think any of the 3 you'll be off to a good start, just make sure you've used it and like the feel.

    I bought KRK monitors (which to answer your question, are speakers designed to get an accurate sound out of your production). I went with V6's. They suit me very well, but as someone else said, if you have more cash, you may go with something better. I just recommend NOT getting M-Audio monitors... after sitting in the store going back and forth, there are far better ways to spend your money.

    I still use Reason - rewired into Ableton, and use Ableton as the main sequencer, with hardware going into it as well as Reason. You can use a good controller to control reason and Ableton, and use each of Reason's intruments as "hardware" and record independently in Ableton.

    There are a ton of options and with your budget, just make sure you don't rush out and buy stuff because you heard it was good. Get the stuff that suits you and your style so you don't end up re-buying stuff you already spent cash on.

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    @ Chi: I definatly feel you. I don't plan in buying sound modules right away, but after seeing an interview with RZA about the MV8000 I think I'm gonna pay more attention to Roland equipment. The MV8000 and the Fantom module are now strong possibilities!
    I plan to make drums an important feature on my production style, so I might look for an SP-1200 as well. Thank you again homie!

    @ Cameron Thomas: Thank you very much for all the tips, KRK monitors are what I'll look for, as well as properly isolating the room hehe... at a later phase I'll also look for a rackmount sampler and analog modeling synth, since I don't find them indispensable right now.

    @ Ray Chappell: Glad you stop by to help me as well, even better if you were in the same situation, that way you know perfectly what I'm talkin' about!
    Definatly, knowledge first, practice second. No point in buying all this if I can't handle them. I plan to carefuly study each machine, I just made this thread to know the specific hardware I should focus on!
    I just added the Focusrite Saffire to my soundcard list, since I never heard of it. Thank you for that tip. KRK monitors and the modules you examplified confirmed what the other posters told, so I'll keep that in mind! Thank you again for your input.

    So I know I have to go for KRK monitors, and either an M-Audio soundcard, a ProTools interface or the Focusrite Saffire. For samplers/sequencers the ones recommended are the Akai MPC, E-mu SP1200 or the Roland MV8000, while MIDI keyboards point to Korg TRITON, Yamaha MOTIF or Roland FANTOM. I thank you all a thousand times since I have multiple possibilities to go for and I feel they are indeed the best.
    And you all got a point on that preference tip. What I REALLY want is make my drums sound as hard-hitting as Pete Rock's, chopping and arranging samples (really play around with them) like DJ Premier, throwing earthshaking basslines like Da Beatminerz, playing some ill synth reminiscent of Ayatollah or J.Dilla, all retaining RZA's undeground grittiness. Any final words on this, considering the possibilities on the table?

  10. #10
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    Oh yeah, don't forget about room treatment. If you have some cash, and you're investing into professional equipment, treating the room to get accurate sound is really important! Check for posts on here from MASSIVE, he has been a huge help to me and room treatment - to make sure your room sounds accurate when you are producing - seems to be the one thing that is overlooked when setting up a home studio. I'm just starting treatment, and jusy by moving my loudspeakers and monitors, I've noticed that tracks sound far different (more accurate).

    Good luck! Let us know what you end up going with.

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