good budget mixer and mic?

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by Sic, Nov 6, 2005.

  1. Sic macrumors 6502

    Oct 26, 2005
    Southampton UK
    been playing guitar and singing for about 6 years now, and being as i just got a mac, i had to get garageband as well, so i can start writing/recording stuff. problem is, i cant seem to get a mic to work just plugging it straight into my input and turning up the sound in system i think it's time to get a mixer and a decent (compared with the one i already have) mic.

    can anyone recommend anything? preferably a firewire/usb input (which will probably mean getting a hub too...might as well kill all birds with one stone!!!)

    this is for a powerbook, btw if that makes any differencee :)

    thank you :)
  2. macbodock macrumors member

    Oct 12, 2005
    Mostly Harmless
    here is an idea for you. A studio quality USB microphone, B.L.U.E. makes a USB Microphone, called the SnowBall that can plug into your powerbook and you are all set to record in GB. Now before you say Mac have ya lost your frickin mind, check out this recording from Robert Andrews called "Stay Away Woman"(the 3rd song down). This was recorded with the SnowBall. Check out the review or the SnowBall at MacInTouch in the Audio Section. It may be just what your looking for. Hope this help!

    Warmest Regards,
  3. steveedge macrumors member

    Nov 2, 2005
    Atlanta, Georgia

    Blue makes great mic's except....since you are a guitar player (as am I) You need three things.
    You need an audio interface. I bought a Firewire Audiophile 2496 by M- Audio it list for 350.00 sells in Online Music stores for 250 and I bought mine from an E-Bay music store new sealed in the box (after some online searching) for 130.00 (including tax. and 2 day shipping ;)

    The only drawback to the above interface is it does not have a pre amp, which is what you need to boost both your guitar and mic, condensor mic's are best. I already owned a Studio projects preamp that I bought for around $80.00 so that was not a problem for me.
    M-Audio makes other models that have preamps built in so you could get both in one unit. They cost a little more though. Just do some research on the best model for the kind of recording you want to do.

    Note: Get a firewire interface instead of USB if at all possible. M-Audio makes a USB model too but it got bad reviews and it does not have a built in mixer like the firewire model has.
    I said you needed three things but you could get by with the above mentioned. You can add a mixer later if you want to record more "stuff" at once but you don't have to have one.
    Also, I like having the pre amp seperate so i can use it by itself for live accoustic guitar or whatever else I need it for.

    Mixers are cheap though. You can buy new ones for $100 or find one on E'Bay for half that.
  4. beatsme macrumors 65816


    Oct 6, 2005
    I've got a Mackie DFX-6 Mixer (around $200 USD) that I use for recording in GarageBand, and it has served me very well indeed. It has both Low-Z and Hi-Z inputs, plus a phantom power source for use with condenser mics. It also has some very nice built-in digital effects i.e. delay, several different reverbs, and it has regular RCA inputs for CD and/or tape looping. The other nice thing: you can plug it right into your PA system and use it at live gigs as well. Granted, it would not be suitable for a concert hall, but for smaller clubs (where all you'd ever really mic is the vocals) it is more than able to do the job.

    For mics, I've got a Shure SM-57 (around $90 USD), which is a nice, not-terribly-expensive, all-around microphone. Great response and very well made.

    Granted, none of this stuff is USB/FW, but a couple of adapters from Radio Shack will let you plug the Mackie right into the Mic input on your powerbook. My feeling is that you're better off buying equipment that can be used in a variety of applications rather than getting computer-use-only items like USB/FW mics and mixers.

    Just my opinion...
  5. Sic thread starter macrumors 6502

    Oct 26, 2005
    Southampton UK
    lol,i hadnt seen that anyone had replied for ages...thanks for the recommendations guys :)

    ordered an M-Audio Firewire 410 today. i need to get a mic now...i've got one, but i'd rather get one that costs more than £30!! might get a stand so's i can mic up my acoustic.

    thanks very much for the recommendations guys...i'll have a look at shure SM-57 :)

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