My Home Studio Tour For 2017

| Plugins, Product Review, Video

Want to take a peek into my home studio? Here’s your chance to scope out what gear I’m using (and why) day in and day out.

My first home studio tour was a big hit, but a few things have changed since two years ago so I wanted to update you with a fresh new tour. This one goes even more in depth as I cover everything from acoustic treatment, to microphones, to plugins.

I say it often but it bears repeating: don’t be fooled by all the stuff in this little studio. At its core my studio has the same components as yours and every studio: An interface, some microphones, a DAW, my computer, and some monitors/headphones. 

Now on to the tour!

Looking for my recommendations on what gear YOU should buy for YOUR home studio? – Grab my personal Home Studio Gear Guide with suggestions to fit any budget

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48 Responses to “My Home Studio Tour For 2017”

  1. Andrew Arbogast

    I noticed your monitoring knob for your clarett is all the way up. Is that because your using the presonus?

    Have you ever worked in Reaper?

    Reply
  2. Ryan Van Slooten

    Great space! I also use the Clarett, only the 8pre, and it is pretty amazing. I actually may have just booked my first recording job yesterday, so pretty pumped about that. Now I really need to get started on the Audio Income Project!

    Reply
  3. Jerry Lingle

    Howdy Graham,
    I am a 67 yo who has retired and I have developed and interest in recording and editing music. I have followed you for several years and have put many of your suggestions to use. I have to admit I am STILL a rank amateur!

    I have been ill for several years but now have the strength and wherewithal to continue my learning process.

    Could you advise which of your learning tools might assist me at this point? It will be a slow go for me but that is just the way is.

    I would appreciate ANY input from you that would assist me.

    Any senior discounts would be appreciate, too! But they are NOT a requirement.

    I do have PC Pro Tools setup but have kind of reached a sticking point. Since I am feeling better theses, it is time to become unstuck.

    YOU are the only one I feel is HONEST about your business and your relationship with your students.

    ANY assistance would appreciated.

    Reply
  4. Tim Carroll

    Graham … I don’t have a single piece of gear that you have listed … that being said, what I do have is some of your courses and I must say, you’re my go to guy when attempting to record, mix, and master. Like so many before me have said, you’re instructions are based upon honesty, reason, and logic … thanks for all the help over the past couple of years.

    Here’s a list of my gear (I’ve spent a bunch on my own prior to discovering the Recording Revolution and it all works great based upon your sound pro audio principles. Anybody reading this … don’t try to spend this much … not necessary … but very nice to have! Start with the minimum.

    SONAR Platinum
    Roland Studio Capture
    Dynaudio BM6 mkIII
    AKG C414b ULS
    KM184

    Reply
  5. Rob

    Nice tour Graham. I love my Rokit 5s. Also have the 8s, but I hardly ever switch to them. My room is about the same size as yours, so I’m thinking about trading the 8’s in for some other gear. Any suggestions?

    Reply
  6. Joseph Papa

    Very nice setup Graham! One little thing I might try out is to move the rack gear to the closest position to you; this way you can see the knob descriptions better and don’t have to reach as far (less fatiguing). However you probably know this equipment so well that it would not matter to you.

    Reply
  7. Joe

    I was surprised to see the placement of your desk. I was told by GIK Acoustics that my listening position should be placed 2/3rds off the front wall leaving only 1/3rd from the back wall. I would have way more room if my desk was place at your position. what is your take on that?

    Joe

    Reply
    • Norman

      Joe,
      According to the 38% “rule”, your listening position should be roughly 1/3rd from the front wall (not 2/3rd), and even that is just a rule of thumb, a starting point.
      If your monitors are not too small, it is, most of the time, advisable to place them as close as possible to the front wall for better low end.
      Also, placing the speakers on the desk is known to cause midrange problems, so it’s better to place the monitors on stands slightly behind the desk.

      Regards,

      Reply
      • John C

        Here’s a little lnformation for research…
        http://tripp.com.au/sbir.htm

        Stands are a good idea if you raise the monitors high enough above the console to avoid reflections from the console surface.

        It also decouples the monitors from the desk, as does the foam under them to a fair degree.

        Grab some aspirin, lol

        Reply
  8. Ian

    Hi Graham, great post, certainly really useful to know what you use! I would be really interested to know what OS you are using on a 2011 machine? It seems to be if you upgrade to current OS on older machines, everything grinds to a hault. I would be very grateful if you could let us know and any tips for older machines and OS. I am using a 2009 Mac Pro Nehalem, which was running Logic 9 very well with Snow Leopard, but now with Yosemite it’s not as quick. But I only have 8Gb Ram too, and maybe it’s time to up this!

    Reply
  9. Koos T

    Hi Graham. Thanks for the tour! Got some usable information out of it. My studio space isn’t that big either (15 by 15 feet thereabouts and I basically cut it in half – control room and live room) but like you’re saying one gets to know his room, treats it and gets it to work as good as possible… always tinkering to make it even better. At the time I am quite satisfied with the results I’m getting and more important: so are my clients. Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Great New Year!

    Reply
  10. Clinton Carlton

    Thanks Graham, you have a wicked setup…
    It’s amazing how much home studios can differ from each other.

    My studio setup is similar in the way it’s hooked up, but I have totally different gear and plugins than you; other than the KRK’s, Focusrite interface and Waves plugins. (Excellent Product!)

    I like the fact that you record most of your instruments in analog.
    This was very informative and inspiring. I realize now that I require a few more microphone types and a bit more acoustic treatment. Fantastic video…

    Reply
  11. Jack W.

    Nice setup Graham! Thanks for sharing.
    Have a Happy Christmas full of Peace, Joy & Music!
    God Bless Your New Year.

    Reply
  12. Luke Valley

    Thank you Graham for the amazing tour, I run a similar setup at home and you just helped me decide on moving to the Clarett. Always look forward to your posts and I have come a long way in my mixes since watching your tutorials! Thanks again for all you do and God bless!

    Reply
  13. TeeH

    Don’t tie your cables into a knot like the one hanging on the wall, they will last longer. A knot makes the insulation inside the cable break.

    A related story: I have a guitarist friend who ties his cables in a knot – incidentally his cables break up connections regularly. We were recording in a local studio and the engineer there picked up one of my friends’ knotted cables. Without knowing whose cable it was, his first comment was: ” This is probably rolled up by a musician? “

    Reply
  14. Peter Indermuhle

    Hey Graham,
    Thanks for all the useful information throughout, I hope to ‘get there’ one day soon!
    From an underground opal mine Dugout, where the rough rock walls are perfect for recording, as there is no bounce back of sound.

    Reply
  15. Alberto Colin

    Thank you for the tour, Graham!

    I’ve been wanting to ask a few questions, and I figure now is as good as ever. I have PT 10.3. It only offers 16 buses. In other videos you’ve posted, it looks like you have more than 16 buses. How many buses do you have total? If more than 16, is this a PT 12 feature?

    Also, regarding reference tracks, how can I bring in a 16-bit, 44.1 kHz reference track into a 24-bit, 48 kHz (or other non 16-bit, 44.1 kHz) session correctly? There must be a trick for doing this. When I try this, the reference track does not play correctly, due to the bit/sampling mismatch.

    Lastly, if the Behringer Baritone is no longer available, what alternate might you recommend?

    I really would appreciate some info on this, either from you or from any body else reading this that “has been there”.

    Thanks for sharing your knowledge and experience!

    Reply
    • Mike Dunbar

      Hi Alberto,
      I keep the links to everal reference tracks on the desktop of my computer, that way I can play them in 16 bit while running 24 bit on the project.

      Hope that helps,
      MIKE

      Reply
      • Alberto Colin

        Thank you for taking the time to provide me with your tip, Mike. I appreciate it! I just thought that maybe there was a way to import said reference track into a session, as described in my post. However, your way seems to be the more logical approach to do this. Thanks again!

        Regards,

        Alberto

        Reply
  16. Rick

    While it may not always be quite as convenient as a hardware monitor controller, I’ve found using the Focusrite MixControl software with my 18i20 (or similar from other manufacturers) works pretty well.
    My DAW has a Monitor section that includes Mute, Mono, Dim, and a few other such controls, and allows me to quickly switch outputs. Combining that with MixControl, I can switch monitors and do other “monitor controller” things without any extra hardware.
    I also can use it to do a talkback function by looping back a mic input.
    That all said, I’d probably prefer a hardware monitor controller, but this setup was free (assuming I buy the AI anyway), and works well enough that a hardware controller falls farther down the “want” list.

    Reply
  17. Joshua Hall

    Graham,

    Thanks for giving us the tour! Real easy to get wrapped up in the “I need to have that mentality” especially when you’re starting to put together a home studio. I appreciate that you always come back to improving your skills by learning to use the tools you already have and not pining for the stuff you don’t.

    Peace,
    Josh

    Reply
  18. John C

    Looking good Graham!
    When you mentioned your midrange and assessing your layout, placing monitors close to corners and walls like this will give you a build up in low frequency energy.

    It might be worth seeing what the effects of sliding the desk a couple of feet into the room does”

    If you know anyone with a table saw, a set of Quadratic Diffusors on your rear wall will give you a nice soft pillow of diffused sound back there.

    The spec is roughly 30dB down, so it’s not a shadow you hear however, removing the deadness is quite pleasing.

    Have a Merry Christmas!

    Reply
  19. Douglas M.

    Very nice…love it! Thank you for the tour and for all that you do for those of us out in recording/mixing land! Take care my friend and God’s Blessings to you and your family
    in this great season. Merry Christmas.

    Reply
  20. Freddie J

    Thank you for sharing your studio and tips, keep up the the good work and have a Merry Christmas.

    Reply
  21. Michael

    Thanks for the tour. I’m curious about how you set the gain for the ISA / Clarett. I run a Daking mic pre/EQ into my 8pre X. I’m looking for the most transparent setting on the Interface. Focusrite said unity was at 12:00 for the line inputs but it seems a little hot to me.

    Reply
  22. Ricardo Corrales

    Graham, You made a comment in the video about the low end trick… I just wanted to tell you that it has been a game changer for me… I’ve been using it since I saw you talking about it and it has improved my balances. I finds that having the the drums and the bass right makes you have everything else right. Thanks for the lessons this year.
    Ricardo C.

    Reply
  23. Brian

    The unsung hero of your studio is the lighting. Seriously. Good lighting really makes your windowless room look inviting. It also makes the videos you shoot in there look great.

    Reply
  24. Rick Kuhns

    Again, I gotta say I love that you use inexpensive (but upgraded) guitars. Love the Squier Jaguar Basses. I have the long scale and use it everywhere.

    Reply
  25. Bill McDonald

    Hello Graham , awesome studio you have. I bought a older console. a Mackie SR40-8bus console and I’am wiring my patchbay, only I’am not sure weather to wire it as a Split console or an inline console. or with this console if I even need one. I have 3 PreAmps an Old biamp MR/40 Pro Reverb a 2 channel Alesis 3630 compressor and a Graph EQ Behringer. I was Just Looking for your opion.

    Thanks Graham Bill McDonald

    Sunrise Select Sound Studio

    Reply
  26. Cams

    Good stuff Graham. I enjoyed that. You didn’t mention your Furman power conditioners. I’m just building my first rack and setting up my first ever studio and would love to hear you talk a bit about what power conditioners you chose and why you like them. I don’t know about prices in the USA, but in the UK the Furman gear is very expensive!

    Reply
  27. Si

    What size is the Apple display? Looks like a good compromise between giant and not big enough!

    Reply

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