My Gear

Dana’s Recording Gear

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The audio interface above is the  TASCAM US-16×08. It captures 16 mic and line inputs to your computer with clear sound quality and advanced features to manage big sessions. Eight Ultra-HDDA microphone preamps deliver the cleanest and quietest operation in their class while delivering up to 57dB of gain. An additional eight line inputs are provided, two of them switchable to instrument level for direct guitar or bass recording. Eight balanced line outputs are also available, two with a level control on the front panel for monitoring.

The Alesis MultiMix 8 USB FX compact tabletop mixer gives you low-noise analog electronics and high-quality digital effects, all in one affordable package. Thanks to its USB port, the MultiMix 8 USB FX delivers better-than-CD-quality direct computer-based recording.

The MultiMix 8 USB FX features four high-gain mic/line preamps, each equipped with switchable highpass filters and capable of outputting 48-volt phantom power. A 3-band EQ with sweepable parametric mids allows you to fine-tune inputs 1 and 2, and input 2 has a 1/4″ direct input for streamlined guitar and bass recording.

Alesis MultiMix 8 USB FX Mixer Features at a Glance:

 

  • 8-channel mixer with mic-, line-, and guitar-level inputs
  • 4 XLR inputs, each with with gain trim, switchable highpass filter, and 48V phantom power
  • 3-band EQ with sweepable parametric mids on channels 1 and 2, 3-band on 3 and 4, and 2-band on 5-8
  • 16-bit/44kHz and 16-bit/48kHz stereo USB output for easy recording and playback from your computer
  • 1/4″ line-level inputs for instruments and a high-impedance guitar input for direct-connecting guitars
  • 16 built-in DSP effects with footswitch bypass control and an aux bus for external processing
  • Multicolor LED metering for visual-level feedback
  • Main and headphone outputs with independent level controls
  • Class-compliant, plug-and-play USB for Mac and PC interface

The Alesis MultiMix 4 USB FX packs digital effects and USB connectivity into a compact mixer you can use for a wide range of applications, from desktop mixing to mobile recording. It has many of the same features as the 8 channel pictured above. Plug any standard microphones you have on hand into channels one and two. There’s even full +48V phantom power onboard for your condenser mics.

Additional 1/4″ inputs accommodate line-level gear, and channel two even features a switchable instrument input, so you can plug in your guitar or bass. A 2-band EQ lets you tune your highs and lows, and a dedicated effects send on each channel feeds the 16-mode digital effects engine onboard. Class compliant USB makes the MultiMix 4 USB FX stand out from other compact mixers you’ll find at Sweetwater. It lets you record and playback audio from your computer or your iOS device.

  • 4-channel mixer with mic-, line-, and guitar-level inputs
  • 2 XLR inputs include universally switchable +48V phantom power
  • 2-band EQs on all 4 channels let your tune your highs and your lows
  • Class-compliant USB connection lets you record and play back stereo audio
  • 6 x 1/4″ inputs accommodate line-level sources plus one instrument input
  • 16 built-in DSP effect onboard with separate send available on each channel
  • Multicolor LED metering for visual-level feedback
  • Main and headphone outputs with independent level controls

Dynamic Mics

Shure SM7b. Whether you work with vocals in the broadcast environment or strive to get great-sounding takes from singers in the studio, you can’t go wrong if you use Shure’s amazing SM7B. This compact mic is equally at home in the radio studio and in the recording studio. You’ll appreciate its flat, wide-range frequency response, which is perfect for close-miked spoken or sung vocals.

This is the mic that Michael Jackson use for his Thriller Album. It is still holds the all time albums sold record. It is also has the same cartridge as the SM57 featured below.

This dynamic mic is better than ever; its updated cartridge has improved shielding, so electromagnetic interference from lights, computer monitors, or other sources won’t affect performances. If your work requires you to take the tools of your trade with you, then the SM7B won’t disappoint. It’s built tough, so it will give you years of great sound and reliable performance.

Shure includes a very convenient (and effective) windscreen which means you don’t have to deal with any expensive add-ons. And internal shock isolation virtually eliminates the transmission of mechanical noise. Perfect for broadcast and recording environments, Shure’s SM7B is a mic-locker essential.

Shure SM57. The legendary Shure SM57 is exceptional for musical instrument pickup and vocals. With its bright, clean sound and contoured frequency response, the SM57 is ideal for live sound reinforcement and recording. The SM57 has an extremely effective cardioid pickup pattern that isolates the main sound source while minimizing background noise. In the studio, it is excellent for recording drums, guitar, and woodwinds. This is my favorite mic.

Outstanding performance, reliability, and application diversity make this “workhorse” the choice of performers, producers, and sound engineers worldwide.

Features

  • Contoured frequency response for clean, instrumental reproduction and rich vocal pickup
  • Professional-quality reproduction for drum, percussion, and instrument amplifier miking
  • Uniform cardioid pickup pattern isolates the main sound source while reducing background noise
  • Pneumatic shock-mount system cuts down handling noise
  • Extremely durable under the heaviest use
  • Frequency response: 40 to 15,000 Hz

Shure SM58. The legendary Shure SM58 vocal microphone is designed for professional vocal use in live performance, sound reinforcement, and studio recording. Its tailored vocal response for sound is a world standard for singing or speech. A highly effective, built-in spherical filter minimizes wind and breath “pop” noise. A unidirectional (cardioid) pickup pattern isolates the main sound source while minimizing unwanted background noise.

Rugged construction, a proven shock-mount system, and a steel mesh grille ensure that even with rough handling, the SM58 will perform consistently, outdoors or indoors. Check out the history, the technology, the artists who use the SM58, and more at sm58.shure.com.

Features

  • Frequency response tailored for vocals, with brightened midrange and bass rolloff
  • Uniform cardioid pickup pattern isolates the main sound source and minimizes background noise
  • Pneumatic shock-mount system cuts down handling noise
  • Effective, built-in spherical wind and pop filter
  • Supplied with break-resistant stand adapter which rotates 180 degrees
  • Legendary Shure quality, ruggedness and reliability
  • Cardioid (unidirectional) dynamic
  • Frequency response: 50 to 15,000 Hz

Audio-Technica ATR-2100 USB Cardioid Dynamic USB/XLR Microphone. This is my favorite mic for under $80.00. The ATR2100-USB is designed to take you from the stage to the studio and beyond. This rugged handheld microphone offers two outputs, USB output for digital recording, and an XLR output that connects with a sound system’s conventional microphone input for use in live performance.

The microphone plugs right into your computer’s USB port, and functions seamlessly with your favorite recording software. The ATR2100-USB also offers a quality analog-to-digital converter for excellent fidelity, and a headphone output with level control for monitoring. Its cardioid polar pattern reduces pickup of unwanted sounds from the sides and rear. The microphone is ideal for live performance, podcasting, home studio recording, field recording, and voice-over use.

Audio-Technica manufactures products that set quality, durability and price/performance standards for live sound tours, broadcast and recording studios, corporate and government facilities, house-of-worship venues, and more. A-T microphones are chosen for critical government installations such as the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate. Audio-Technica microphones and wireless systems are also selected for major broadcast music events.


Condenser Mics

Need an affordable mic you you can use on almost anything? Sporting a 2/3″ diaphragm capsule, a fixed cardioid pickup pattern, and the ability to withstand high SPLs, the AKG P120 works great on just about any source – instrumental or vocal. A bass roll-off switch and 20dB pad add to this mic’s versatility.

When you consider its super-affordable pricetag, the AKG P120 becomes a logical choice for project and home studio multi-mic applications such as drums. Sweetwater is always looking to bring you value – and the AKG P120 delivers it, big time.

AKG P120 Medium-diaphragm Condenser Mic Features at a Glance:

  • Serviceable cardioid polar pattern
  • Frequency response: 20Hz-20kHz
  • Max SPL: 150dB
  • Bass roll-off: 300Hz
  • Pad: 20dB
  • Requires +48V phantom power

I own 8 of these great little mics. The Audio-Technica Pro 70 miniature condenser microphone achieves full-sounding pickup and is known for outstanding consistency and dependable performance. Supplied with both a clothing clip and guitar mount, the Pro 70 provides natural and articulate vocal reproduction when used as a clip-on lavaliere and excels in pickup of acoustic guitar.

The Pro 70 is designed to make music and speech clearly and comfortably audible, yet never draw attention to itself or its operation. The microphone is equipped with a low-frequency roll-off switch that allows for reduced pickup of room noise. The versatile Pro 70 may be powered by either battery or phantom power. Its cardioid polar pattern reduces pickup of sounds from the sides and rear, improving isolation of the desired sound source.

Audio-Technica Pro 70 Miniature Condenser Microphone Features:

  • Ideal for both vocal and acoustic guitar applications
  • Frequency response 100Hz-14kHz
  • Maximum input SPL 123dB
  • Natural and articulate vocal reproduction when used as a clip-on
  • Lavaliere clothing clip included
  • Excels in pickup of acoustic guitar with included instrument adapter
  • Cardioid polar pattern reduces pickup of sounds from the sides and rear, improving isolation of desired sound source
  • Switchable 80Hz, 8dB/octave low-frequency roll-off
  • Corrosion-resistant contacts from gold-plated XLRM-type connector
  • Operates on battery or phantom power
  • Six-foot cable permanently attached between microphone and power module
  • Wired mic – requires cable

The Shure KSM137 is an end-address condenser microphone with a cardioid polar pattern. Designed for studio use, yet rugged enough for live applications, the KSM137 can withstand extremely high sound pressure levels (SPL). Its low self-noise and extended frequency response make it ideal for recording musical instruments. I use these mics as “room mics” and for recording acoustical instruments.

Shure KSM137 Stereo Pair Features:

  • A highly consistent cardioid polar pattern
  • Ultra-thin, 2.5 micron, 24 karat gold-layered, low mass Mylar diaphragm for superior transient response
  • Class A, discrete, transformerless preamplifier for transparency, extremely fast transient response, no crossover distortion, and minimal harmonic and intermodulation distortion
  • Premium electronic components, including gold-plated internal and external connectors
  • Subsonic filter eliminates low frequency rumble (less than 17 Hz) caused by mechanical vibration
  • Switchable 15 dB pad for handling extremely high sound pressure levels (SPLs)
  • Three-position switchable pad (0 dB, 15 dB, and 25 dB) for handling extremely high sound pressure levels (SPLs)
  • Three-position switchable low-frequency filter reduces background noise and counteracts proximity effect
  • Extended frequency response
  • Low self noise
  • Exceptional reproduction of low-frequency sounds
  • Can withstand high sound pressure levels (SPL)
  • High output level
  • No crossover distortion
  • Uniform polar response
  • Superior common mode rejection and suppression of radio frequency interference
  • Requires +48V phantom power

Digital Recorders

Zoom’s H6 Handy Recorder portable recording system gives you everything you need to capture quality audio anywhere. Four XLR/TRS combo inputs complete with on-board microphone preamps provide a solid basis for hooking up studio mics or taking feeds from line-level equipment.

On top of that, the H6 recorder features both an XY and a Mid-side mic module, which you can swap out with additional aftermarket input modules. Add to that its impressive battery life and professional 24-bit/96kHz recording quality, and it’s no wonder the Zoom H6 Handy Recorder is making waves!

One of the things that make the Zoom H6 Handy Recorder such a field-recording workhorse is its extensive I/O, which puts its functionality comfortably on par with the high-end dedicated recorders used by film and television professionals. On the body of the H6 alone, you’ll find four combo jacks, each with its own volume dial and switchable -20dB pad.

These inputs let you connect anything from phantom-powered condenser microphones to extremely hot line-level sources. Cooler still is the H6’s modular expansion port, which lets you connect microphones such as the included XY or Mid-side capsules. Read all about them in our Zoom Capsule Buying Guide. As for monitoring, you get both a line and a headphone out on the H6, plus a built-in speaker for mono playback.

Tascam DR-40 Digital Recorder

The TASCAM DR-40 gives you the flexibility you need to record tracks anywhere. The DR-40 captures up to four tracks from built-in, high-quality condenser microphones, XLR mic or line inputs. The internal mics are adjustable from XY to AB position, helping you to tailor your recording to the sound of the room.

A pair of great-sounding TASCAM microphone preamps welcome condenser microphones with phantom power, recording at up to 96kHz/24-bit resolution. It accommodates balanced XLR or 1/4″ line inputs using locking Neutrik Combo jacks. The DR-40 accepts SD or SDHC cards up to 32GB, and a 2GB card is included.

Once recorded, play back your takes with EQ and the optional Level Align feature to avoid volume jumps. A stereo reverb effect is also built-in, as well as a speaker and chromatic tuner. Transfer recordings to computer using the USB 2.0 jack. Other features include overdub mode, variable speed playback, limiting and low cut filter, and much more – all with TASCAM’s simple-to-use interface. No other recorder makes home or live recording as simple as the TASCAM DR-40.


Mic Booms & Stands

People often forget about boom arms and mic stands. If you have a mic with the little 3 legged tripod stand that does not place your mic at the proper position, you will never reach the full potential your mic has to offer. Mic placement is critical when it comes to recording regardless if it is speech, vocals or instrumental.

The PSA1 is a studio boom arm for radio, broadcast, studio and home use. The PSA1 offers a horizontal reach of 820mm, a vertical reach of 840mm and full 360 degree rotation.

It is supplied with Velcro cable wraps and both desk-clamp and desk-insert style attachments for versatile mounting in desks up to 55mm thick (clamp) or 70mm (insert). The PSA1 supports most microphones weighing between 700g (1.5lb) and 1.1kg (2.4lb) when combined with shock mount.

The MS112 Desktop Boom Mic Stand from ProLine safely and securely maintains the position you set for your microphone so you can capture the perfect sound.

The low-profile boom stand is perfect for micing kick drums, amplifiers, etc. It features die-cast metal clutches and a heavy-duty die-cast base. 1 to 9 in. telescoping boom. 12 to 17 in. adjustable height.

 

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