I didn’t expect my last post to get me in trouble.
But it did.
I included a brief intro to Graham, for people who didn’t already know him, and I mentioned that he recently set himself a challenge – to record a song using a home studio setup costing only $300. And that’s where the trouble started.
Because it turns out, some people don’t like that idea !
They don’t believe that you can get great results using affordable gear, and they think Graham is deliberately misleading people by saying so. Telling them what they want to hear, rather than being realistic and honest.
So, what’s my opinion?
It’s a nice idea, sure, and Graham’s mix sounded pretty good – but can you really get good sound in a home studio costing only 300 dollars, especially when you put it under the microscope for mastering ? REALLY ?
I decided to find out. Watch the video above to hear the results for yourself, and let me know what you think in the comments…
OK, before we start, I need to get something straight.
Aretha Franklin is a legend, one of the greatest singers of all time, and if she chooses to sing through a kazoo whilst breathing helium, that’s fine with me.
Seriously, you just don’t argue with talent like that.
I’ve made various videos over the last few years comparing vinyl and digital releases of different albums – because sometimes vinyl is mastered with more dynamics than the digital formats, which is something I care about.
But I always try to avoid passing comment on the actual formats themselves – CD versus vinyl, analogue versus digital – because I feel these discussions are actually red herrings. They’re distractions from the real issues of what makes our music sound great.
But inevitably in the comments of these posts and videos, someone will eventually jump in with the timeless old chestnut:
Now this is a popular belief these days, but the fact is there’s no theoretical reason to believe it’s true – correctly implemented digital audio can exactly reproduce any analogue audio signal with complete accuracy.
But when I say that, there’s always someone who says something like
“people who listen to CD are missing out on the emotional experience. I don’t expect you to understand, but I know it’s true”.
To which my response is – how dare you ?!
There’s a recurring theme on this site:
Watch the video above, and then tell me you don’t agree – I dare you.
We spend so much of our time lusting after bits of gear, the next new “must-have” plugin, a new guitar or a better amp… and it’s all nonsense.