What Are The Requirements For A First Home Studio?

The latest in a series of predictable Q&A about setting up a home recording studio, the question is typical and the answer, if short, points to a solution that will require 1,000 bucks or more. 

This is absolutely NUTS!

See the original Q&A below and then the Home Brew Audio answer below that.

Q: I am in the process of getting involved with making my own music. I am interested in making Dance music, preferrably House, Trance and remixes. As of now, I am using Reason 3.0 and Sony Acid Pro but I would like to know what else I would need to build home recording studio, such as other software and hardware. Other tips would be greatly appreciated.

Here is the Home Brew Audio answer:

To specifically address this person’s question, I would recommend that he/she get some more virtual instruments for their computer.  He says he has Propellerhead Reason Software (Mac and Windows) (a synthesizer program for computer) and Magix ACID Pro (a looping program with general audio capability as well). 

Since he seems to be most interested in making dance, house, trance and remix music, he’ll want more beat/drum capability like the SONiVOX Playa Hip-Hop Virtual Instrument or StudioLinked Drumma – Drum Machine Instrument Plug-In, etc. 

By doing this, he can improve his studio by leaps and bounds and not spend more than 1 or 2 hundred bucks.  Below is our “stock” answer for the folks who don’t already have a home studio.

Our usual answer for what people need for a home recording studio

To start out, DON’T spend more than $100 to start out!  I know, crazy right?  If you are just learning how to record audio, you can do all you need to (learn multi-track recording, basic audio editing, mix-down and final production) with a garden variety computer, some sort of microphone (even the cheap plastic computer mics will do at this point). 

If you don’t have a mic, you can get a computer mic for $4-$5.  The recording software is free (Audacity).  And that’s all you need to get started.  You can even do quite a lot with this equipment with a little skill and guidance, though I would stop short of saying you can produce much in the way of professional quality audio at this price point. 


So what is the minimum amount of money you’d have to spend to actually start producing pro quality audio?  I’d say $59.  Yes, you heard correctly.  Just moving from a $5.00 mic to, this USB mic: Samson Q2U, will allow you to record and produce audio quality that I would call “minimum professional level.”

I go into much more detail on what gear to buy in my mini-course “How To Create a Home Recording Studio.” It will walk you thorough gear to buy at 4 different budget levels.

How to start using your gear and software

See our video tutorial course – The Newbies Guide to Audio Recording Awsomeness 1 – The Free Home Recording Studio for how to get started right away. If you don’t want to spend the $39 for that course right now, you can get the first several lessons free just by clicking on the banner below.

Free videos from “The Newbies Guide to Audio Recording Awesomeness”

These video tutorials show you step-by-step, in plain language how to record multi-track audio in Audacity AND Reaper software.

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