A recording diary – post no. 2

Managed to get out of work a few hours early a week or so ago and had a three hour spell to do some recording at home and make some noise before everyone was home from school. What did we learn? This is what we learned….

Doesn’t take too long to set up and get going with the Zoom H4n at all. Probably about half and hour to set up guitar and kit and then go. Managed to record 2 hours and 5 minutes of audio – it said so on the screen! Felt pretty good about that. Better still, I managed to review it all in the following two evenings which is pretty much a record for me.

And the recordings themselves? Well…Using a pick up instead of mics for the guitar is great. It gives the guitar a whole different quality – it’s not the same as mic-ing up but is quicker and sounds 100% better than the piezo. I like it, not saying I’m not going to persevere with the mic-into-looper-for-guitar idea, just for the moment the ease of using a pickup means I’m actually producing stuff, which is ace! All of the instrumental parts of these recordings sound really good, they have a distinct gentle but electric quality to them. All of the vocal takes sounded way below par though – a consequence of a 5 mile sprint home on the bike and rushing to get going? That’s what I’m going to put it down to. I tried to fit an awful lot in and this session definitely pointed the way forwards.

Out of the whole session, this edited piece came through sounding really interesting.

The mic on the Zoom is super sensitive and setting the gain accurately on it is a bit hit and miss at the moment. I have to be very wary of overloading the input so I end up recording very quietly. Add to this a lack of any suitable means for me to mix and monitor adequately and the end result is pretty quiet. I do like the quality of the Zoom’s mics though and they pick up everything including the traffic going passed the house.

So, not quite there yet but well on the road.

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