Tips for Improving the Quality of Your Home Music Recording


Technology is at its peak these days. Creating music is more comfortable and more accessible for beginners in music production as well as seasoned music producers. Creating quality music nowadays does not require expensive and massive studio equipment anymore. Often, you’re only going to need the right software, apps, and tricks to create quality, radio-ready music.

Assuming you already have the essential recording equipment, all you’re going to need are sound enhancing software and apps. Plus a couple of tricks that can help you improve your final tracks to make it sound more professionally produced.

Doing these few extra steps can improve the quality of your music significantly. You may have to buy additional software and invest in better equipment, but if you are serious about music production, it will be worth every penny.

We will show you the best paid and free software for audio enhancement such as EQ’s and compressors for improving your bedroom and mobile music production.

SOFTWARE

  • ERA 4 SOFTWARE BUNDLE

(Price: $149)

The Era Bundle is a collection of cleaning plugins that are very easy to use. The plugins have single knobs for simplicity. By purchasing this software bundle, its the easiest way to master your audio tracks hassle-free. For best results, the raw audio tracks must be error-free and recorded well.

 The bundle comes with:

1. Noise remover

The noise remover easily cleans up and reduces unwanted noise on your audio track, like electric hums, fans, and any other background noise.

2. Reverb Remover

The Reverb Remover easily removes the unwanted reverb from the room acoustics. The excessive reverb is quickly reduced to bring focus to your tracks.

3. Voice Leveler

This one-knob voice leveler easily compresses and limits the sound of your vocal tracks.

4. De- Esser

This fantastic app can quickly fix the speech of your vocal tracks. Sometimes the lyrics are hard to pronounce, and you over-pronounce syllables, but this excellent app can fix that problem.

5. Plosive Remover

This plugin minimizes the pop-ups and excessive thumps from your vocal tracks. Sometimes breathing on your microphone when recording is unavoidable, good thing there is the plosive remover.

6. De-Clipper

You can instantly reduce audio clipping with the De-Clipper. The high volume can be chopped off, so you have consistent sound levels in seconds.

  • iZOTOPE RX

(Price: $129)

The iZotope RX Elements is an Audio Restoration and Enhancement app that is perfect for improving the quality of our audio tracks. Unlike the simplicity of the ERA pack, the RX is much more precise when it comes to adjustments. Some of the features are the De-clip, De-hum, De-click, and De-noise. 

It works the same as the ERA, with many more options than just one knob. This plugin makes the process more comprehensive.

  • ROUGH RIDER

(FREE)

This free compressor plugin is free to download, but despite that, it works great. It adds a vintage and warm kick to your tracks. It is perfect for adding compression to drums, guitar, synth, and vocal tracks. It is essential to add uniformity to your sound levels.

APPS

  • CHORD PROGRESSION GENERATOR

The Chord Progression Generator is a free app that generates cool progressions. This app can enhance your song-writing process because of the new ideas it can create just for you.

Writer’s block happens sometimes, and this is an excellent app to get more ideas rolling.

  • NOLIMITS AU LIMITER

(Price: $9.99)

This paid audio unit plugin is essential for enhancing your tracks. A limiter is a necessary aspect of mastering a record; the NoLimits Limiter is an easy-to-use a limiter. With just a simple tweak of a knob, you would notice a big difference in sound. This app works with Cubasis, Garageband, Auria Pro, and Audio Bus.

  • DIRECTIONAL EQ

(Price: $9.99)

This Equalizer takes mobile equalization on a whole new level. Its multi-directional features are very remarkable. The multi-directional features allow you to equalize all directions of the stereo field independently. This app works with Cubasis, Garageband, Auria Pro, and Audio Bus.

  • NYCOMPRESSOR

(Price $8.99)

The NYCompressor is a professional compressor audio unit plugin for iOS. This app works with Cubasis, Garageband, Auria Pro, and Audio Bus. It can bring all your tracks to life. Adding this compression makes your song or your album coherent.

  • ROUGH RIDER 2

(FREE)

This free app is one of the best compressor apps on iOS. It works just like its MAC and Windows counterpart. This app has one knob that does it all.

  • AUDIO BUS 3

(Price: $9.99)

Audio Bus 3 is an essential app for iOS users. This app can interconnect numerous music apps.  You can add third-party apps like equalizers, compressors, synths, and other effects then record it straight to your preferred DAW.

  • MUCKCRACKER

(FREE)

This effect plugin is a distortion with a lot of fun knobs to play with and adjust. You can assign knobs to a midi controller for precise control.

  • NEBULIZER

(FREE)

The nebulizer is not an ordinary delay effect. It misbehaves as the developer would describe it. The glitchy functions are great for experimenting. The impact is significant for playing live and for recording.

  • FROBULATOR

(FREE)

This good-sounding reverb effect plugin is perfect for spacey and ambient tones. It sounds remarkable, considering it is a free app.

ADDITIONAL TIPS

LAYERING

Layering tracks is an excellent technique to enhance your songs. Layering a couple of ambient synth sounds in the background of your tracks adds a little bit of flavor to them. Make sure you go easy on the layers and make sure they complement each other and do not clash with each other.

Layering is like when you are cooking a dish, you add more flavor, but each ingredient should still be distinguishable. The same goes for layering. You can’t just add a whole lot of tracks. There is an exact process, so your audio tracks complement each other.

A proper technique for layering is to make a low synth, then layer an octave, then layer a fifth. If you do well in music theory, layering will be easy for you.

EQ

Equalization is an integral part of enhancing the quality of your tracks. The process organizes the bass, mid and high ends of your record. And it also gives them a respective sport in the mix.

Assigning your tracks to a specific space in the mix makes your audio better for listening. Beginners commonly overlook this aspect of mixing because they do not know how to do it.

Just remember, the bass lives in the low end, guitars in vocals in the middle, and the rest should remain in the high-end, so the tracks do not clash.

Take time to equalize every track of your mix, such as the master track of your final mix.

INVEST IN CABLES

You do not need any expensive cables. What you need are working cables with no humming and static.

Make sure you get the right cables. Long cables can affect the latency of the signal. 6 to 10 feet cables are okay for recording. Having excellent guitar cables can also lessen the noise of guitar and bass recording.

  • MOGAMI GOLD ¼” GUITAR CABLES

(Price: $50)

This guitar cable provides a crystal-clear tone with noise reduction. The construction of this cable is durable using, a conductive polymer shield and an Ultra High-Density spiral shield for low noise, low feedback, and heavy-duty use.

  • MXR PATCH CABLE 3 PACK

(Price: $12.99)

The MXR patch cables are durable and flexible. The flat angle of the ends is a pedalboard space saver. These patch cables are equipped with a spiral shield for lower noise.

STRINGS

Make sure your guitar strings are in good condition. When you have old rust strings, the quality of your guitar tone is affected. New guitar strings always sound good when recording guitar and bass tracks.

A neat technique is to have a guitar for recording only and equip them with long-lasting strings; and another guitar for practicing. This way, your recording strings do not wear off and will always be in shape.

  • ELIXIR ELECTRIC GUITAR STRINGS OPTIWEB

(Price: $12.99)

These strings are built for long-term use. The Optiweb coating technology protects against common corrosion and debris buildup. Although, you will notice that you are losing the new string sound after a while of use.

  • ERNIE BALL REGULAR SLINKY PARADIGM ELECTRIC GUITAR STRINGS

(Price: $15)

These strings have the new state-of-the-art wire drawing process that dramatically increases strength. These strings still feel like the regular Ernie Ball strings with the reinforced Nano treatment.     

  • ERNIE BALL WONDER WIPES STRING CLEANER 20-PACK

(Price: $7)

These wonder wipes will help extend the life and tone of your strings. It eliminates acid, dirt, and grime. This product is an essential accessory in a bedroom recording studio, and for playing live.

MICROPHONE

Invest in a good microphone. It will take you a long way. If you are beginning, you can settle for a cheap microphone, but if you are in recording for the long-term, invest in the right gear.

Here are a couple of examples of high-end microphones:

  • NEUMANN U-87

(Price: $3,000)

This vintage style mic is an excellent mic that producers like Calvin Harris and Steve Aoki even tweet about buying this microphone.

It is a large-diaphragm microphone that is suitable for capturing almost any vocal and acoustic instrument tracks.

This mic is a classic studio microphone that has three directional characteristics, Omni, cardioid, and figure 8. The features give the mic more functions in a recording session.

  • SENNHEISER MD 441-U

(Price: $900)

This dynamic microphone is an excellent versatile mic for recording and for singing live. A dynamic microphone is used for recording louder audio like guitars, bass, drums, and piercing vocals.

This mic has excellent feedback rejection to make you sound cleaner live. The excellent pick-up of this mic can capture even your dynamic whispers and tones.

The five-position roll-up switch gives you numerous sound options. The five different modes add a lot of fun to this mic.

Having a mic like this lessens your worry about your room’s acoustic treatment. If you do not have enough time and knowledge to treat your room acoustics, get this microphone because it is worth every penny.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

WHAT IS COMPRESSION?

Compression is the process of lessening the dynamic range of your audio track. It is like keeping the audio tracks to stay in the same zone, the middle zone where loud parts are lowered down, and quiet parts are increased.

Compression is entirely overlooked nowadays, but this aspect of the recording is way more important to the sound than you think.

HIRE SOMEONE TO MASTER YOUR TRACKS

If you do not have time to learn how to master tracks, there is always an option to hire somebody else to do it for you. Mastering tracks is a different ball game. If you are good at recording, that is one thing. Mastering is a different thing.

Most producers hire another person for mastering. If you have time in your hands, you can always learn to master. It is a useful skill to know how to do. If your business is music production, knowing how to master tracks is an essential skill.

  • EMASTERED.com (Price: $6-$29 monthly fees)

This website is an online audio mastering engine that is very easy to use. All you need to do is upload your tracks, and the audio driver will do the work for you.

This website was created by Grammy-award winning record producers such as Clinton Sparks, Tae Beast, and Carlos CID.

  • LANDR

Another online mastering engine with instant results. You can sound like a pro, without having to learn the complex process of mastering. The best part is, you can try it for free.

WHY MASTERING IS ESSENTIAL

Mastering is like proofreading an article before publishing, this takes time, but it is probably one of the most critical processes in music production.

Mastering usually involves adjusting the EQ levels and adding compression. Mastering can impact the entirety of a whole album, as it can make the tracks coherent.

Mastering is making sure of the quality of your tracks before releasing it. I suggest that you master all your tracks before uploading it on any platforms. You will seem a lot more like a professional by doing this.

It will take a lot of time to learn how to master records. But if you love producing, you should focus on mastering more because creating and recording the tracks is just half of the work. 

RECORD ONE SECTION AT A TIME

The good thing about modern recording is that you can record stuff over and over without running out of reel or film. In the old days, the number of re-takes is limited because you will run out of the reel.

It will cost a lot more money to record back in the old days. The editing was tedious back in the day because you have to patch the reel itself. There was no copy and paste for repeating parts.

When you are recording an extended guitar solo or a challenging instrumental track, there is an option to record it part by part. You can chop down the recording into sections and this way it will sound a lot cleaner when the pieces are glued together perfectly.

CLEAN AND MAINTAIN GEAR

Sometimes the condition of your gear can affect the audio output. dust and dirt can add humming to the contact points on your audio interface, guitar effects pedals, and cables.

Make sure you find time to wipe it off with some WD-40. You can also use a can of compressed air to clean the hard-to-reach spots of your gear.

SLOW DOWN THE TEMPO

Some DAWs allow you to slow down the tempo when recording. With this technique, you slow down the pace slightly then record that section of the song, then bring it back to normal speed.

This technique can compromise the bit rate of your tracks, make sure you don’t slow it down or speed t up too much. Slowing the track down to about five bpm slower will do the trick.

This technique will allow you to record difficult parts like guitar riffs cleaner.

MIND THE NOISE

Extra noise around your recording area may be picked up by your microphone. Even just the subtle sounds that your computer is making can affect the output in a big way.

Make sure that when you are recording microphone inputs such as vocals and guitars, your microphone is far away from any possible noise.  

Put your phone on airplane mode, the static from the incoming messages or calls can be picked up by speakers. You don’t want to be interrupted by this, especially when you are recording long phrases and lines.

CONCLUSION

These simple tips will take you a long way in improving your sound. You may have to pay and invest in some of them, like extra software and hardware, but this will drastically improve the sound of your home recording. If you follow these steps, people will hear your music and be amazed that you produced them in the comfort of your bedroom.

To read about the best high-end equipment for your home studio, click here.

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