Building my recording setup


Staff member
Software: Cubase Elements 11.
Audio Interface: Tascam US-1641.
Mixer (to play around with): Mackie 32ch, 8bus analog.

my plan is to use the Mackie Mixer, and connect the Tascam interface to it via the first 8 recording outputs. i have a Tascam 16ch recorder, that no longer records. but it looks neat, and has VU displays for all 8 channels, so i can use it for recording output level monitoring by connecting it to the Mackie Mixers next 8 recording outputs. there are 3 groups of 8 outputs that connect in parallel to the mixers 8 buses. the mixer does have direct outputs for all 32 channels, but i think i can work with the 8 buses and just group channel assignments to the buses based on what needs to be recorded. in other words, if i am recording just drums, i can take each output from my DM5, and record them on their own channel. then group the other instruments that are just playing through to a monitoring bus so the drummer can keep time with the other players.

on the off chance i do a podcast, i also happen to have a Telos 100 Delta pine line (POTS) interface, in case i take calls. i will have to create some way to dial out, as well as indicate an incoming call, though. but i will connect it anyway, just in case. maybe just plug in a old corded phone into the phone handset output, and use my cellular home phone device connected to the phone line input. now, the audio connections are a little tricky. i can't remember the exact setup, but either the XLR input or output needs to be connected to a back feed. i think it is the input connecting to an Aux-send channel from the mixer. the idea is, you only assign all the channels you want the caller to hear to that Aux-send, but you can't assign the channel from the caller to the mixer to that Aux-Send, or it will result in a feedback loop.

for player monitoring, i have a Takstar WDM-200 transmitter, and 1 (so far) receiver body-pack, that the player plugs their headphones into. i will connect that transmitter input to the Studio Out on the mixer.

for my personal monitoring, when at the console, i have a Audio Technica Broadcast headset, with a dynamic mic that i can either use to contribute (like on a podcast), use like a talk-back (to players) when un-muted. but the headphone plug will simply plug into the mixers headphone jack.

space is very limited down in my basement space. i want my drum kit in the front-right corner. i will turn it to face the corner more, so the entry way is larger. also, the mixer and rack i want facing from the front wall, toward the back, rack on the right (when facing it from the front). that way i have access to both front and back. it will take up a lot of space, but that is why i have to turn the drum kit to face the front-right, as it is a sort-of "U" shape frame. that is, unless space doesn't allow.
what would improve things greatly, is if i moved my electronics workshop up to my bedroom. this could be possible, but i would have to do a LOT of room cleaning, and donate a lot of stuff to the great circular file. then it would essentially be a music room.

ideally, the room should be sound-proofed, so no sound gets in or out, but i really don't think that would be possible, given the low ceiling height. so the next available ideal option would be to buy my own house, and build a studio into a room or outbuilding. (not yet financially possible)

if that became possible, and i had the available space, i would likely build the studio walls in another layer, and use Roxul insulation to deaden the walls, and then drywall them. the flat surfaces will make the room live, but i plan on using modular acoustic traps to be able to deaden the room as needed,