May, 3, 2012

Do-it-Yourself Equipment Recommendations


Occassionally people ask us for equipment recommendations so they can make their own recordings.
We hope this list helps you get started!

Portable Audio Recorders
Digital recorders will allow you to capture sound and immediately upload it on to your computer. Most recorders will plug directly into your computer or will store the audio files on a removable flash card.

Recommended digital recorders: Tascam DR-05 ($80), Edirol R-09 ($320), Marantz PMD661 ($700)

An external microphone will yield better sound than the internal mic on your computer or recorder. When connecting an external microphone to a computer, change your audio settings in your System Preferences or Control Panel.

Recommended microphones: Shure SM-58 USB microphones and the Blue Snowball (these are USB microphones, meaning they will plug directly into your computer and your computer will function as the recorder)

iPod and iPhone Recordings
If you happen to own an iPod or iPhone, some fairly decent recordings can be done using either of these two cute microphones, the Blue Mikey ($50) and the Alesis Pro Track ($110).


Video Cameras
If possible, choose a video camera that has an audio input so that you can attach an external microphone to the camera. There are lots of reasonably priced HD cameras on the market, but if the one you’re considering doesn’t capture sound well, don’t buy it!

Recommended Cameras: Canon T-3 ($600), Canon VIXIA HV40 ($600)

A good set of headphones is critical. They will block out background noise and allow you to hear in the moment how the finished audio or video recording will sound (hearing the person’s voice is essential!)

Recommended Headphones: Sony MDR-7506 ($95), but you can use whatever you have on hand.

Audio Editing Programs
ProTools, Logic, Audacity or Garageband

Video Editing Programs
Final Cut Pro Express, iMovie, Avid FreeDV

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