2nd Edition

Recording Secrets for the Small Studio

By Mike Senior Copyright 2023
    492 Pages 142 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    492 Pages 142 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    In this new edition, discover how to achieve commercial-grade recordings, even in the smallest studios, by applying power-user techniques from the world’s most successful producers.

    Recording Secrets for the Small Studio is based on the backroom strategies of more than 250 famous names. This thorough and down-to-earth guide leads you through a logical sequence of practical tasks to build your live-room skills progressively from the ground up, with user-friendly explanations that introduce technical concepts on a strictly need-to-know basis. On the way, you’ll unravel the mysteries of many specialist studio tactics and gain the confidence to tackle a full range of real-world recording situations.

    Specifically designed for small-studio enthusiasts, this book provides an intensive training course for those who want a fast track to releasing quality results, while the chapter summaries, assignments, and extensive online resources are perfect for school and college use.

    • Learn the fundamental principles of mic technique that you can apply in any recording scenario – and how to avoid those rookie mistakes that all too often compromise the sonics of lower-budget productions.
    • Explore advanced techniques which help industry insiders maintain their competitive edge even under the most adverse conditions: creative phase manipulation, improvised acoustics tweaks, inventive monitoring workarounds, and subtle psychological tricks.
    • Find out where you don’t need to spend money, as well as how to make a limited budget really count.
    • Make the best use of limited equipment and session time, especially in situations where you’re engineering and producing single-handed.
    • Pick up tricks and tips from celebrated engineers and producers across the stylistic spectrum, including Steve Albini, Neal Avron, Roy Thomas Baker, Joe Barresi, Howard Benson, Tchad Blake, T-Bone Burnett, Geoff Emerick, Brian Eno, Paul Epworth, Shawn Everett, Humberto Gatica, Imogen Heap, Ross Hogarth, Trevor Horn, Rodney Jerkins, Leslie Ann Jones, Eddie Kramer, Jacquire King, Daniel Lanois, Sylvia Massy, Alan Meyerson, Justin Niebank, Gary Paczosa, Tony Platt, Jack Joseph Puig, David Reitzas, Bob Rock, Laura Sisk, Fraser T Smith, Young Guru, and many more.

    Now extensively expanded and updated, with new sections on contact mics, software instruments, squash mics, and ensemble depth distortion.

    Part 1: One Source, No Mics  1. Recording a Machine  2. The Human Element  3. Instruments with Pickups  Part 2: One Source, One Mic  4. Basic Vocal Recording  5. Beyond Vanilla Vocals  6. Single-Mic Instrument Recording  Part 3: One Source, Multiple Mics  7. Multimiking in Mono  8. Multimiking in Stereo  Part 4: Multiple Sources, Multiple Mics  9. Ensemble Recording with a Dominant Array  10. Adding Spot Arrays  11. Ensemble Recording with Peer Arrays  12. Going Freestyle  13. Conclusion


    Mike Senior is a professional recording and mixing engineer who has worked with Wet Wet Wet, The Charlatans, Reef, Therapy?, and Nigel Kennedy. He specialises in adapting the techniques of top producers for those working on a budget and has been a regular writer for Sound On Sound magazine since 2007. Mike is also the author of the best-selling Focal Press book Mixing Secrets for the Small Studio, has a long-running weekly production-critique blog at TheMixReview.org and creates podcasts, videos, and tutorials for the Cambridge-MT.com educational resources site.

    'A perfectly targeted and very readable mine of technical information, practical advice and real-world home-studio experience [...] it’s a book that I’d be very happy to recommend unreservedly to enthusiasts, students and experienced practitioners alike.'

    Hugh Robjohns, Sound on Sound