In the market for new equipment, advice greatly appreciated!

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In the market for new equipment, advice greatly appreciated!

Postby Dabrenn » 05 Aug 2013 21:37

Hey guys, I'm going to be heading off to the University of Alabama soon and I'm in the market for quite a few pieces of audio equipment and I was wondering if you all had any recommendations or advice to help me out. I'm not willing to spend huge amounts of money, but I have around $500 I'd be willing to spend to cover my bases, the less overall is better (I'm frugal as hell)

Right now I need a pair of Studio Monitor Stands, probably some Isolation pads for them as well, a pair of studio monitor headphones, and a Microphone of some sorts.

Right now i'm looking at Sennheiser HD 380's or AT M-50's (I have a Kontrol S2 which I believe can supply power to Studio Headphones if needed, but I am unsure). I honestly don't really know where to look for headphones around the $150 range. Ideally I'll be able to fine tune my mixes on my Behringer Truth B1030A Monitors, so these are not extremely important, but I am open to any and all advice.

Also looking at OnStage-SMS6000-Adjustable-Studio-Monitor Stands. No idea where to even start here. Do I need to drop $100 on these? or are cheaper ones better? They will be supporting my monitors so they must be sturdy.

Havn't even begun to look for a mic. I'm not a singer, so this isn't vital, but I feel like I should own one.

Lastly Auralex MOPAD Monitor Isolation Pads. Completely ignorant on this subject.

Thanks for reading and I truly appreciate any and all help!
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Re: In the market for new equipment, advice greatly apprecia

Postby the4thImpulse » 05 Aug 2013 21:45

Real quick:

Spend ~$300 on headphones, there have been a few other headphone threads in this price range so read them as people will recommend all the same ones.

Speaker stands are around $100 and ISO pads are a waste when you have access to thin foam (look in any decent sized craft store).

If you want the best all purpose microphone get a SM57, they cost around $100 and are a true jack of all trades mic. They don't excel in any one area, but also don't suck in any one area, every studio/live sound company owns one.
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Re: In the market for new equipment, advice greatly apprecia

Postby Dabrenn » 05 Aug 2013 21:49

ISO pads are a waste when you have access to thin foam (look in any decent sized craft store)


This is exactly the kind of things I love to hear, Thank you!

Spend ~$300 on headphones, there have been a few other headphone threads in this price range so read them as people will recommend all the same ones.


I read Nine Volt's thread awhile back and recently looked through it, I had actually posted a reply on it when it was active.

I'm just not sure if I want to drop $300 on a pair of headphones. Ideally I'd only use them for when I can't mix on my Studio Monitors, but I'd be willing to reconsider if you could extrapolate just a bit. I personally don't feel the need, but then again I'm very ignorant on the subject overall.
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Re: In the market for new equipment, advice greatly apprecia

Postby itroitnyah » 05 Aug 2013 22:15

If you're handy with a saw you can just make yourself some speaker stands for around half the price of regular consumer stands/studio stands. Just model them after designs that are highly rated, make the speaker plate roughly the size of the base of the monitors and the foot a bit bigger so that they'll stand properly, and you're good to go.

If you're looking at spending close to $500 on music stuff, don't skimp on the audio part. $100 on the mic, $25 on custom stands (if you choose to go that way), $10 on foam from a craft store... Leaves you with $365 left over, spend $300 on headphones and then pick yourself up a steam wallet gift card on the way home, arrive with more than you bargained for. Of course, after taxes will bring the left over money down a bit, but you'd still have ~$40-50 left over or something.
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Re: In the market for new equipment, advice greatly apprecia

Postby the4thImpulse » 05 Aug 2013 22:27

Dabrenn wrote:I'm just not sure if I want to drop $300 on a pair of headphones. Ideally I'd only use them for when I can't mix on my Studio Monitors, but I'd be willing to reconsider if you could extrapolate just a bit. I personally don't feel the need, but then again I'm very ignorant on the subject overall.

As with most other things in life if something costs more its usually better in some way to warrant that expense. If someone has a $2000 budget for studio headphone I would expect them to want something as close to that value as possible. Sub $200 gets you passable studio headphones, I have personally heard many models and none are exceptionally great in this price range. $300 and higher gets you cans that will last years if you take care of them and they will provide a much truer sound.

IMO it's where 'studio headphones' become studio headphones. Of course there is wiggle room in that price.
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Re: In the market for new equipment, advice greatly apprecia

Postby Dabrenn » 06 Aug 2013 00:02

If you're handy with a saw you can just make yourself some speaker stands for around half the price of regular consumer stands/studio stands.


I actually considered this for ahwile, but I wanted the "Adjustable" aspect of them and I don't feel confident enough to make speakers stands that are sturdy, adjustable, and not hideous, so I decided to pass. Good suggestion though.

will last years if you take care of them


I'm pretty obsessive about my electronic care and if I spend $300 on headphones I will expect at absolute minimum 5 years of out of, preferably a lot more. At this point, Durability would be more important overall than sound quality to me. Are any brands particularly known for this? I've heard Sennheiser is really good about making individual parts replaceable and thus their stuff has good longevity. Also, are any in this price range able to be powered by a phone or other portable media player? just curious.
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Re: In the market for new equipment, advice greatly apprecia

Postby Mr. Bigglesworth » 06 Aug 2013 00:10

Well since Headphones have been covered, if you're looking for a hardware synth - I own a Minibrute and I love it. I'd recommend picking an actual synth up some day. Even if you can't use it in a track, it's a lot of fun to just mess with real knobs.
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Re: In the market for new equipment, advice greatly apprecia

Postby itroitnyah » 06 Aug 2013 08:25

Getting a hardware synth would be awesome. I really want one when I move out. But the minibrute would take up all of his $500 budget, and after spending $100 on stands, $100 on the mic and $10 on foam, he'll have about $190 left over. And you can't really get a hardware synthesizer for $190.
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Re: In the market for new equipment, advice greatly apprecia

Postby Dabrenn » 06 Aug 2013 15:01

I had though about a hardware synth, but I'm not quite in the financial straights for that at the moment, but I'll keep the minibrute in mind. Maybe I can find a used one for cheap.
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Re: In the market for new equipment, advice greatly apprecia

Postby Mr. Bigglesworth » 06 Aug 2013 16:40

I did say "some day". Go for the basics first, then save for a fancy toy :3
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