5 Home Recording Hacks To Make Your Recordings Sound Pro

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Alright, let's face it. Studios are damn expensive and sometimes are just out of the budget. But what do you do if you want to get an idea out into the world?

In comes home recording. I'll be honest, you can make some pretty incredible stuff at with today's technology. Also, it's probably a good idea for every musician to at least have a rudimentary understanding of how recording works. It will help you when you get into a commercial studio.

So, today we're going to give you 5 home recording hacks that can help you get the most out of your home recording.

1) Hallway Room Mics

I love this hack. So let's say you're recording in a small room in your house, but you want to get huge "Bonham" style drums. How are you going to do that without a reverb plugin?

Well, you're going to put the room mic in another room! Experiment with this, but generally the further away, the bigger the room sound. You’re effectively increasing the pre-delay in your “room” sound the further you go.

Just be sure to constantly check your phase relationship with other microphones. You can simply flip the phase back and forth to see what feels better, or continue moving the mic around until you find the right spot

Things like stairwells are great, kitchens, hallways, etc. Get creative. Just because your room isn't that big, doesn't mean you can't have a big room sound. 

2) Closet Vocals or an Kaotic Eyeball

This one is pretty obvious, but yeah, set up a mic in your dark and dingy closet, and get tracking! These work great as there is very little reflection (assuming you have clothes hung up in there) and it's a tight, controlled sound.

Alternatively, you can look at using some sort of room dampening mount system, such as the Kaotic Eyeball. These can really help you track vocals in any environment with a lot of control, turning a bedroom recording into a studio quality vocal!

Now you may say, "well what if I want to have a roomy vocal sound?" Hey fair enough, there are plenty of times where I do too! But I think in this instance, it's probably best to use a plugin. You could try the room technique above, but use your own judgement. 

3) Egg Cartons 

This will make your room look...well pretty damn hilarious. But egg cartons are a great way to provide diffusion to your room. Their naturally corrugated form cause the dispersion of sound waves in every direction, which is great for getting rid of standing waves in your room.

So collect as many as you can, try to grab some from a grocery store recycling bin, and staple them to your walls! It will do wonders. Now having said all that, if you can afford real sound absorption and diffusion materials, do that.

4) Hang Carpets and Blankets

Get a few old carpets and/or blankets and hang them from the wall. This can really help with any reflections in the room that are causing a build up of frequencies. However, don't over do this either! Sometimes too much dampening can completely kill the sound of your room.

Use your ears. It may be better to do some dampening with blankets and some diffusion with either egg cartons or real diffusers. I also hear a lot of people say that you should treat either your ceiling or your floor, but not both. So if you got carpet on the floor, leave the ceiling alone!

5) Use Specific Rooms For Specific Sounds

For instance, the Foo Fighters recorded the drums for their record "Wasting Light" in Dave Grohl's garage, because he said it sounded aggressive and huge.

I'm sure you've also heard of people singing in the bathroom or shower, and that's because the bathroom typically has alot of reflections and therefore a natural reverb.

Now, you have to be careful, as you may not want too much of this. But it may work great for an effect. Try it out and get creative! 

Conclusion

These five home recording hacks will certainly help your recordings sound more professional. Be sure to experiment with each one and see how you can make it work for you.

Hope that helps! For more tips and updates on the studio, follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and join our mailing list!

Cheers!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Brad is the owner/founder of Velveteen Audio. He produces with the duo Towers and plays in his own project called Optics.


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