I fiddled around with keyboards and midi waay back in the 80's; since then, the keyboard has gone south, and I got involved witha all sorts of other junk.
Yesterday, I went out and did some shopping.
By What I Was Told, I currently have what I need to get Started with a home midi studio: One M-Audio controller, Cakewalk Sonar.
Now, I'm not trying to set the world on fire - just trying to get back into the whole thing, but everything's changed. And this sounds... err... pretty simple and inexpensive. One usb port, and I am suddenly master of the universe. What aren't they telling me over at Sam Ash? No sound modules anymore? Wut?
Oh - and this seems bizarre - the m-audio didn't come with a power supply. The USB has enough juice to power that great honking keyboard? (No - haven't plugged it all in yet - working on some video voiceover work, so I'm assembling gear) That HAS to be bull****e... doesn't it?
Could somebody get Rip Van Winkle up to speed on what I Really need to lay out to get something relatively functional? Thanks!
My obligatory standard reply-for-newbies that I keep in Wordpad so this is just a paste (I don't want to re-type this all the time):
First off, immediately get a good beginner recording book (spend $20 before spending hundred$/thousand$) that shows you what you need to get started and how to hook everything up in your studio:
Home Recording for Musicians by Jeff Strong - $15 http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/047...SIN=0470385421
(Wish I'd had that when I started; would have saved me lots of money and time and grief)
You can also pick up this book in most any Borders or Barnes&Noble in the Music Books section!
And you can get a FREE subscription to TapeOp magazine at www.tapeop.com
Barnes&Noble or Borders are great places to start --- they have recording books and you can go get a snack or coffee and read them for FREE! Don't pass by a good recording book --- this is a VERY technical hobby and you REALLY want to start a reference library!!!
Still using a built-in soundcard?? Unfortunately, those are made with less than $1 worth of chips for beeps, boops and light gaming (not to mention cheapness for the manufacturer) and NOT quality music production.
#1 Rule of Recording: You MUST replace the built-in soundcard.
Here's a good guide and tested suggestions that WORK: http://www.tweakheadz.com/soundcards...ome_studio.htm
(you'll want to bookmark and read through all of Tweak's Guide while you're there...)
Plenty of software around to record for FREE to start out on:
Another great option is REAPER at http://www.cockos.com/reaper/ (It's $50 but runs for free until you get guilty enough to pay for it...)
I use Reaper and highly reccomend it...
Music Notation and MIDI recording: Melody Assistant ($25) and Harmony Assistant ($80) have the power of $600 notation packages - http://myriad-online.com
Demo you can try on the website.
And you can go out to any Barnes&Noble or Borders and pick up "Computer Music" magazine - they have a full FREE studio suite in every issue's DVD, including sequencers, plugins and tons of audio samples. (November 2006 they gave away a full copy of SamplitudeV8SE worth $150, November 2007-on the racks Dec in the US- they gave away SamplitudeV9SE and July 2009 issue they put out Samplitude10SE. FREE. It pays to watch 'em for giveaways...)