How To Build A Home Studio On A Budget
Are you debating whether you should create a home recording studio or not? If you’re serious about pursuing a career as a singer or musician, you’re bound to reap many benefits. To begin with, you will allow yourself the time and freedom to record whenever you want. There will be no more waiting to lay down that song you just finished when you can record in your own home.
Another advantage is that you will be able to “pandemic proof” your music, as you won’t be shut out from recording in your own studio should we ever face another pandemic like COVID-19. The biggest benefit of creating your own studio is that you will be able to learn about music theory and build your own personal sound on your own time. That way, professional studio time can be spent wisely.
The downside to creating a home studio is that it costs money. Some of the recording and mixing equipment can be really expensive, and if you don’t have the funds for it, building your own studio may take longer than you expected. Fortunately, the experts at New Wave Music LLC are aware of the main tools and equipment you will need and have prepared a guide on how to build your own studio on a budget. With this guide, you will be able to create your studio within a small budget of just $1,500 to $2,500, depending on the specific equipment you pick up and how urgently you need your studio ready. Keep reading to see what you will really require in a home studio and how you can save money.
Buy a computer
Buying a computer is a considerable purchase, both monetarily and musically. This will likely be your most expensive purchase for your home studio, but you can’t do anything without a computer! We recommend a laptop for portability and extra affordability. Mac products are our go-to, but they are a bit on the pricey side if you’re buying them brand new. At the same time, they are a good initial investment that can make the rest of the entire process simpler for you and maybe the difference between a $700 laptop and a $1,000 laptop.
Purchase a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation)
These are the programs we use to create music, and they are the second essential piece of your recording studio, after your computer. We have a YouTube video breaking down some of the differences between seven major DAWs, so you know which one to choose. Just bear in mind that the price range here can be pretty significant, from free to $800 and more depending on the developer and the package size.
Purchase an audio interface
This is how we communicate with the DAW, allowing us to record vocals or instruments and playback sound through speakers or headphones. Without this, your abilities with your DAW become limited. A standard audio interface will be about $100 to $150.
Purchase a mic and the extras
These items are necessary to record your own vocals through the audio interface. You’ll need a condenser mic and a male-female XLR cable, along with a stand, a pop filter, and preferably a mic shield. The mic itself will probably be about $100 to $150 (if you’re spending more than this, you’re purchasing equipment way beyond the scope of your home studio). All the attachments for the mic should come out to around $100 as well.
Purchase some closed-back studio headphones
You’ll need these to record accurately and without sound leakage into the mic, which can cause major interference within a song. These are also great for playback and mixing as they are portable, just like the rest of your studio so far! Headphones can range anywhere between $70 to $150.
Determine your studio environment and set up your equipment
If you have a decent-sized space that you can dedicate solely to your studio, then you may be ready for some instant upgrades like studio monitors or a small vocal booth. We also have a YouTube video covering this topic, which can guide you effectively.
When setting up your home studio, your biggest purchase will be a laptop and possibly the DAW you choose. Everything else you need for your home studio will come in at $100 to $150 or less. The laptop will be the largest purchase of your starter home studio unless you’re looking into the everything bundles from FL Studio or Ableton, as those are in the $750 to $900 range. However, there are some very affordable DAWs, like Logic Pro X, which cost a flat $200.
If you feel uncertain about the products you’re purchasing, try to research them more or speak to a professional for their opinion about these products. Just remember to keep an open mind and always stay hungry to learn new tricks and hacks to improve your home studio and the sound of your voice.
When you finally assemble everything for your home studio, don’t think twice, dive right in! Having your own studio will only help you in your journey to define your own lane in the music industry. At the same time, learning through your own experience will be great fun, but also go to YouTube any time you feel stuck and need some extra help.
Once you’re ready to record professionally, feel free to get in touch with us at New Wave Music LLC. We are a music recording studio in New Castle, Delaware, and we are fully equipped to take your sound to new heights. The quality of our studio and resources is unmatched in this industry, which makes us a great studio to partner with if you are a professional or even a beginner. We also have several years of experience in the recording business, which allows us to guide you efficiently and ensure your recording is completed on time as per your expectations.