New Arrivals For October

Here in the UK, the online second hand gear market is in the worst shape I’ve seen for decades. Even frequent ‘sell for £1’ events by eBay haven’t helped.

So instead, I’ve decided to sit down, and sort out my home studio setup.

Marshall DSL 20HR

These were launched around the same time as my beloved Marshall Origin, as a replacement for the old Marshall DSL range. I played through the 5w combo at the Origin demo night, and loved it.

One finally turned up at a great price, and it now completes my collection of classic amp tones from affordable amps. I’m looking forward to learning how to get the best out of it over the coming months.

The Hermit’s Cave has spent most of this year as the rehearsal space for the band I’m in. I’m currently getting things sorted out and wired up for recording once again. When that’s done, and I’ve found my feet with this amp, I’ll record some clips and demos to show how this amp compares to the Origin 20H.

OMEC Teleport by Orange Amplifiers

Before there were Pods, there were Roland guitar synths.

When I worked in London in the mid-90s, Denmark Street was the place to search out great gear. Did I buy a vintage guitar, back before they cost the earth? No. I bought a piece of electronics that dated faster than fresh bread: a Roland guitar synth.

That old unit brought me years of pleasure. I wrote a whole album’s worth of music on it, veering off from writing guitar music to writing music for other instruments. I can’t remember what happened to it – whether it died or I sold it on – but I still miss it. And the two? versions that Roland brought out since were IMHO inferior. Roland seems to have completely given up on it in recent years.

The OMEC Teleport is a little pedal that acts as a USB audio interface. It’s just another way to get your guitar signal into a computer. Combine it with Jam Origin’s Midi Guitar 2, and I’m hoping it’ll give me renewed access to the guitar synth world.

And if it does, I’m planning on taking all that old music I wrote, revising it, and re-recording it. Fingers crossed 🙂

Synergy Friedman BE Module

I’m always on the lookout for extra modules for my insane stereo Synergy pedal platform. Many of the ones I don’t have yet don’t clean up enough to use with most pedals. Sometimes it’s great to simply go straight into a filthy amp, so if I can get those modules 2nd hand, I will.

ART XLR Patchbay

There’s a part of me that would love to have a Universal Audio Apollo rack unit, partly for the extra processing power, and partly because I hate recabling before I can sit down and record stuff. They’re serious money, and completely overkill for my situation. Processing power on my Apollo Twin is an issue, but I hardly ever need more than two preamp inputs at a time.

So what if I simply made the chore of cabling a lot less of a chore? That’s where the two patchbays I’ve bought this month come in.

The idea is to have (nearly) all of my gear wired up permanently, and then I just need to jumper a few ports to pick the gear I want to use.

Neutrik Patchbay

As well as the XLR patchbay (above), I bought a traditional 3.5mm jack patchbay at the same time.

When I want to switch amps, one of the things that’s a real pain is switching over the FX loops. They’re not always easy to reach without moving the amp, and sometimes I can’t find the right length cable to reach my pedal board.

For convenience, I’m hoping that I can run the FX loops of all my amps into this patchbay, and then it’s just a case of moving a couple of cables to plumb in my preferred delay and reverb pedal chain. It should also be possible to jumper the cables for when I don’t want anything in the FX loop either.

If that works, I’ll also try patching in the input to each of my amps. That’s just out of curiosity though 🙂

Kemper Remote Footswitch

Another thing the patchbays are for is for me to get my Kemper wired up once again, so that I can start using it a bit more.

One advantage of using the Kemper for practice is that it means I’m not using up the life of my tube amps. Another advantage is that it has a built-in looper – but it seems that you need to pair it with the proprietary footswitch unit to use the looper.

These footswitches have shot up in price recently, so when a 2nd hand unit came up, I decided to grab it while I could.

Universal Audio Apollo x6

I got fed up of juggling inputs on my trusty Apollo Twin, so I traded away my Taylor T5z to help fund this new unit.

I’d been waiting for a Apollo x4 of some kind for the best part of a year now. Historically, there’s been a huge gap in the Universal Audio hardware lineup: you had the Apollo Twin with two preamps, and then had to jump up to the Apollo 8 with four preamps. Four preamps would be a good sweet spot for a home studio setup.

They’ve just announced the Apollo x4, and while it does have four preamps (yay), it’s still a desktop unit (boo!) with potentially limited processing power … that’s launched at around the same price as the Apollo x6.

The other thing with the Apollo x6 is that it currently comes with a free UAD Apollo Satellite. That’s a unit that provides additional DSP processing power. Together, the bundle is far better value for money than the Apollo x4.

CoffeeAndKlon #20: Giving Up Gear (That You’re Not Using)

This conversation originally appeared on my Twitter feed.

Good morning! This week’s #CoffeeAndKlon is a day late … because Kristi and I went to the UK International Guitar Show yesterday. Today, I want to talk about giving up gear. As in, letting go of gear you’ve outgrown or stopped using.

Today’s Coffee … Is My All-Time Favourite

First: coffee. Lots of coffee today, because at work I’ve got an immovable deadline coming up. A second cup of Sumatran, my favourite coffee. I’m going to pay for this later!

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Sumatran coffee is very dark, very bitter, and very strong. It’s an all-out coffee assault, and definitely an acquired taste. I normally can’t handle 2 cups of it in a single day. But I’ve missed it, and I forgot to photograph my first cup earlier 🙂

I could happily rotate between this and Rwandan coffee all the time. Which reminds me … I can’t remember the last time we had Rwandan. It’s a lot harder to get hold of than it used to be. I haven’t looked into why.

Letting Go Is Hard

So … giving up gear. Yesterday, we drove all the way from Wales over to London to visit the UK International Guitar Show*. And in the boot, I took a couple of guitars to trade.

*subject for another day!

(Just for clarification: I didn’t take the gear to the guitar show to trade. I swung by a major guitar shop on the way home to trade them there.)

I’m terrible about letting go of gear. Well, guitars in particular. Amps and pedals, I’ve moved on. I wouldn’t say ‘happily’, but definitely much more easily than guitars. I don’t feel the same attachment. Guitars though …

Part of it is definitely fear … fear of the guitar not surviving delivery to its next owner. The idea of killing a guitar genuinely fills me with dread. They’re more than tools to me.

That’s why I took these guitars to a major retailer to trade. I’d get a lot more selling them privately, but I struggle with the stress that brings. This way, I know the guitars are going to safely make it to the next person who needs them.

Another part of it is a sense of loss. I (try to) seek out guitars that have their own voice. Trading away one means never hearing that voice ever again. I find that hard.

What Did You Trade?

Yesterday, I traded away my Taylor T5z. It’s stunning to look at, and (imho) the best sounding T5z I ever played or heard. A hybrid electro-acoustic with the neck carve and playability of a Les Paul. Great for anyone who doesn’t like acoustic guitars.

It played an important part of my recent musical life. It was the guitar I bought to start the band. Found it up in Glasgow in 2017, and it was the first acoustic-like guitar is played where I still sounded like me.

We used it to start exploring our sound. It was the guitar we used to choose our gigging amps. A good 50% of the set at our first gig was written on it. And it was up there on stage at that first gig.

Since then, it’s largely been a case queen.

Our gigs have taught us that a traditional acoustic guitar works best when playing in small rooms like pubs and cafes. Spaces where the audience can feel and react to the guitar’s unamplified tone.

It was incredibly important as a catalyst and a bridge. And once we’d crossed that bridge and gone full-acoustic, its journey with us was done.

Driving home last night, I didn’t feel any regret at moving the Taylor T5z on. The only regret I had was that I hadn’t been able to trade away the other guitar I’d taken along too. That inspired me to write about this today.

When Gear Serves A Bigger Purpose

Despite all the gear I talk about on here, the band has been my main musical focus for all of 2019. And the gear I use in the band has all been about serving the band’s needs better. When the Taylor no longer did that, I was alright in letting it go.

Why did the other guitar come back with me? I couldn’t get the trade-in price I needed for the next set of gear for the band. That one, I will need to sell privately. Stress be damned.

Having the band as the main focus of my music has *forced* me to start treating guitars as tools. Even though the band is just a hobby. Even though we’re not trying to become professional musicians.

It’s going to take a quite a bit longer for me to actually get comfortable with that though …

Thanks For Reading

If you’ve enjoyed this week’s #CoffeeAndKlon, please do let me know. And I’d love to hear what you think about hanging onto gear vs trading it away.

Studio Diary #6: I Need To Upgrade My Audio Interface

I’m currently getting my home studio more organised, and along the way I’m sharing my thought process, decisions, discoveries and regrets.

I’ve had the new studio rack and the two new patchbays for a week or so now. I’ve experimented with a few possible layouts. And I’ve come to an awful conclusion: running all of this into my existing desktop interface just isn’t going to work for me.

Running Out Of Inputs

For the last three years, I’ve been using the Universal Audio Apollo Twin as my audio interface. Not only does it sound fantastic, it’s also allowed me to start learning about more professional approaches to recording and mixing, thanks to the UAD plugins that emulate classic outboard gear.

It only has two inputs. And, the more I look at my draft wiring diagrams for the new studio rack, the more I’m feeling that two inputs is no longer enough.

To get more inputs, I’m going to have to spend serious money. Unfortunately, it’s not something I budgeted for when I started the studio revamp project.

Time To Raise Some Cash

Back in 2017, when Tess and I first started kicking around the idea of doing an acoustic duo so that we could gig regularly, I bought myself a Taylor T5z. It’s a hybrid guitar with a Les Paul neck; a great help for someone like me who doesn’t get on with traditional acoustic guitars.

The guitar’s been a regular for our rehearsals, and was one of the guitars I used when we supported the lovely Adriana Spina at West Malvern Social Club earlier in the year.

Since then, it’s fallen out of use. I’ve finally adapted to playing an acoustic guitar, and Tahani (my Fender Acoustasonic Telecaster) has been relegated to being my backup. That’s left the T5z without a role.

It’s actually the most valuable guitar of the three, so the time has come to move it and use the money for this unplanned purchase.

I’m not comfortable selling it privately. It’s not just a good guitar, it’s also a bit of a work of art, and I’d feel terrible if it was destroyed in transit to a new owner. So I’m going to trade it in instead.

Whenever I’m trading in a guitar, I always take it to Andertons. The trade-in process is very straight-forward there, and they’ve never once tried to bullshit me or rip me off in any way.

Yes, I will get less money than if I sold it privately. You can’t expect a shop to offer you what you could potentially get via eBay. But, once you take out eBay fees and the hassle of shipping a fragile guitar, the difference isn’t as bad as it might seem. And I can walk out with a new audio interface, same day.

Just so happens that we’re going over that side of the country tomorrow anyways, to visit a guitar show. The T5z will be going with me, and hopefully I’ll be trading it in on the way home.

Gear News: The Apollo x4 Has Been Announced

This conversation was originally posted to my Twitter feed.

A couple of very interesting bits of new gear announced today.

  • PRS are updating the McCarty 594 range to sound bang-on like a vintage burst.
  • And UAD are releasing new Apollo desktop interfaces, including something I’ve always wanted: an Apollo x4.

Tim Pierce has a video up about the McCarty 594 changes:

Chicago Music Exchange has a great comparison too:

And Sweetwater has a good video about the Apollo x4 here:

The Apollo X4 Is A Missed Opportunity

Last year, UAD revamped their rack units, and introduced an Apollo x6. 4 Unison preamps + 2 more normal ones, and plenty of lines out. Pricing was too close to the old Apollo 8 units to bridge the gap though.

[The Apollo x6 actually has 2 Unison preamps, and 4 additional line-in-only preamps – Ed]

(It’s not just the hardware that’s expensive. You need to buy plugins from UAD to run on that hardware, and they’re not cheap either. They’re a fraction of what the actual outboard gear they’re emulating costs, but every UAD owner spends more on plugins than on Apollo hardware)

I’m sure I’m not the only UAD customer who told UAD in one of their surveys that I would love to buy a 4-preamp unit. Now it’s actually here, there’s a problem. It’s expensive. It’s practically Apollo x6 money. They’ve plugged the hardware gap, but not the pricing gap.

Actually, it’s worse than that. At least one UK retailer is listing the Apollo x4 for *more* than the Apollo x6 atm.

I’m genuinely gutted. I’ve been trying to justify an Apollo x6 to myself all summer. When we’re rehearsing, I record each session, and I could really use an extra preamp or two. Same when working with my Kemper, where I’m using multiple mics at once.

If the Apollo x4 had been priced in the gap, I’d have ordered mine first thing in the morning. But I’m not paying Apollo x6 money for one.

Gear News: The 2020 PRS McCarty 594s

This conversation was originally posted to my Twitter feed.

A couple of very interesting bits of new gear announced today.

  • PRS are updating the McCarty 594 range to sound bang-on like a vintage burst.
  • And UAD are releasing new Apollo desktop interfaces, including something I’ve always wanted: an Apollo x4.

Tim Pierce has a video up about the McCarty 594 changes:

Chicago Music Exchange has a great comparison too:

And Sweetwater has a good video about the Apollo x4 here:

The 2020 594’s Have A New Sound

I’ve mixed feelings about the updates to the McCarty 594.

As much as I adore the Les Paul, the 594 is simply a better designed instrument. Better intonation, better tuning stability. I would gig a 594 over a Les Paul every single time.

There’s two flavours of the 594: singlecut, and double cut (which is what I have). In my experience, they often sound quite different.

I like the double cut 594 because it doesn’t sound like my Les Paul. Yes, it’s vintage-voiced, with that emphasis on the upper mids. It has its own tone, and it suits me perfectly.

I literally spent a quarter of a century searching for that tone.

The singlecut 594 is different again … the best way I can describe it is to say it’s like a muscle car in guitar form. Big, deep tones. Some distance away from the sound of a Les Paul.

Singlecut 594s with ebony boards can get quite close to the Les Paul. The sharper attack and snappier top-end is just gorgeous. The only reason I don’t own one is that my hand sticks to PRS gloss necks 🙁

I can understand PRS wanting to revoice the singlecut 594 to sound like the holy grail of guitars: the vintage bursts. But I’m glad that I have one of the older doublecuts. And I’m sad that the 594 tone won’t be a thing in future years.

CoffeeAndKlon #19: Make Time For Your Passions

This conversation was originally posted to my Twitter feed.

Good morning folks! I’m back with another #CoffeeAndKlon for you. This week, I want to step away from gear (for once!) and talk about time … the time we have for music.

Today’s Coffee is El Corozo

I’m currently drinking the last of the El Corozo. There’s a new coffee shop that’s opened up opposite the Apple Store down in Cardiff. Been past it a few times – it’s been a bad summer for Apple and reliability – and finally remembered to pop in and check it out.

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I’ve mixed feelings about this coffee.

It’s a decent coffee, with a nice amount of bitterness in the aftertaste. A definite step up on the kind of coffee most shops brew for their customers. And much much nicer than the coffee I’ve been drinking from the hospital coffee shop.

The only reservation is the price. It’s quite a bit more expensive than similar, Fairtrade-certified coffee from other shops.

Do try it. If it’s the taste you’re after, I’m sure it’ll be worth it to you. It’s all personal preference after all.

It’s Time To Talk About … Well, Time!

So … time. Last month was a bit of an anniversary for me. It’s now 30 years since I first started playing electric guitar. Over the years, there’s been periods when it was important, and years when it was neglected. But it’s always been the one constant in my adult life.

At the end of the day, it’s just a hobby. It doesn’t put food on the table or keep a roof over our heads, and frankly, we’d starve pretty quickly if I tried to be a professional musician. That doesn’t mean it isn’t important.

I don’t know why YOU play music at home. You’ll have your own reasons for it. And I’d love to hear what they are.

For me, it’s sanity. It’s no coincidence that many of the periods where music was important are also the times where my professional life was getting me down.

During those times, I’d always retreat to my guitar and write. Not very well, I grant you, but it was the doing that kept me going. Having an outlet is an important safety valve for the human soul.

It took me a long time to learn that music could be about joy too. I remember going through a particularly nasty work situation several years ago, and constantly wondering “why am I writing music that sounds happy?”

That confused me. I didn’t understand it at all. At the time, it made me question whether I really was unhappy with what was happening in my professional life. Was it my way of telling myself that I should put up with it?

No. I’d simply learned to enjoy music for the sake of it. It had happened so gradually that I hadn’t realised.

I’d finally found the guitar that suited me – the Les Paul – after decades of avoiding them. I’d found the kind of tone I’d been seeking in valve amps, after many years of digital disappointment.

Such a roundabout journey, I hadn’t noticed I’d arrived.

Time changes perspective. Spending time on something – a guitar, a pedal, an amp, or music itself – gives YOU time to grow. After all, any piece of gear is pretty static. It doesn’t really change. It’s your approach to it that needs to change.

And music is only brought to life by the arrangement you come up with, and the performance you find within yourself.

At least, that’s where I am with things today.

I think we all need that one something in our lives. That one passion, regardless of aptitude, ability, or the need to monetise it. For me, it turned out to be music. And gear I guess 🙂

It has to fit around the rest of your life – work, family, friendships. Whatever it is, when you find it, you’ll know. Because you won’t be complete without it.

None of us have infinite time here. Make time for your passions. If nothing else, it makes the time we have that much easier.

Studio Diary #5: The Rack Has Arrived

I’m currently getting my home studio more organised, and along the way I’m sharing my thought process, decisions, discoveries and regrets.

My studio rack is here.

Built Like A Tank

It’s a good job that the Trojan 16U Wheeled Rack is a very solid thing, because whoever posted it out didn’t bother to pack it securely, and it arrived in a box that had been badly crushed.

The Trojan was snugly packed in its own box. That had then been placed into a second – much larger – box on its own. The second box didn’t contain any packing material at all – just the Trojan’s box.

As a result, this thing arrived in a very beaten-up state. The outer box was badly crushed, and the Trojan inside was twisted out of shape.

Fortunately, it only took a bit of work with a lump hammer to knock it back into shape so that it would go together.

Bracketed Central Support

Halfway back inside the rack, there’s a vertical rail that runs from top to bottom. It’s a channel that you can run a set of supplied brackets into. You position the brackets where you need them, tighten them up with a nut and bolt arrangement, and they provide additional weight-bearing support for whatever you want to put into the rack.

The brackets take a lot of force to move, even before bolting them into place, and I had to use the lump hammer to physically knock them to where I needed them. I don’t think it’s meant to be like that. It looks like the central channel got damaged in transit, and I’m not sure how to bend it back into position.

On the plus side, that gives me even more confidence that they’ll help hold my power amp in position. On the down side, I’m not going to be swinging a lump hammer inside the rack once it has gear in it. If I decide to make wholesale changes to this rack in the future, that’s going to make things a bit awkward.

Side Vents? No, Cable Management!

Cable management is something that I didn’t think about at all when picking a rack. It never occurred to me that it would make life a lot easier if the rack came with something for me to fasten cables to.

There’s no official cable management that I can spot. I’m going to have to improvise.

The (non-detachable) sides of the rack have slotted vents, which I presume are meant for passive cooling? I can’t help but look at them, and see somewhere I can secure cable ties to.

Well Worth The Money

Overall, I’m very happy with this studio rack. It survived being badly packed, that central vertical rail is going to give me peace of mind, and I can use the slotted vents to tidy my cables away.

It’s well worth the money, in my opinion.

Studio Diary #4: Picking The Patchbays

I’m currently getting my home studio more organised, and along the way I’m sharing my thought process, decisions, discoveries and regrets.

The studio rack is on its way. Now I need to choose a couple of patchbays to go in it.

Why A Patchbay?

I want all the gear wired up and ready to go … but I can’t use it all at once. A patchbay allows me to quickly pick and choose which gear I want in the signal path whenever I want to use it.

If you want to know more, take a look at this LedgerNote article on patchbays. It’s been the article that’s guided me on this.

Choosing A Patchbay

I actually need two patchbays: one for XLR cables, and one for TRS cables. Choosing them turned out to be easier than I expected.

I decided to buy new, instead of second hand. While I’m sure that patchbays are well-made and durable, they are a partially-mechanical device: they have ports where you plug and unplug things. Anything mechanical eventually fails. As patchbays aren’t that expensive, I’d rather pay a bit more and hopefully avoid any problems.

There aren’t a lot of patchbays to choose from in these parts – especially when you rule out patchbays that are advertised for sale, but which aren’t actually kept in stock. I don’t want to order something, and find that it gets caught up in the impending Brexit-related import chaos.

Which Patchbays Did I Go For?

For the XLR patchbay, I’ve ordered the Art P16 Patchbay. It’s a simple 1U rack unit with 16 ports on the front, and 16 ports on the back in a straight-forward passthru arrangement.

For the TRS patchbay, I’ve ordered the Neutrik NYS SPP L1. This was my second choice. I would have preferred the Samson S-Patch Plus, but I couldn’t find anywhere that had one in stock. The NYS SPP L1 has a great reputation, and provides 24 socket pairs to work with.

I’ve ordered both from Thomann, and they should be here not long after the rack itself arrives.

I’ve also ordered a total of 12 patchbay cables to use on the front of the Neutrik unit. These are short TRS cables that’ll allow me to pretend I’m an old-fashioned telephone operator 🙂

Studio Diary #3: Picking The Rack

I’m currently getting my home studio more organised, and along the way I’m sharing my thought process, decisions, discoveries and regrets.

The guts of my studio is going to be the rack that most of my gear lives in.

Why A Studio Rack?

To some people, a rack of gear seems very 1980’s. To others, it seems like complete overkill for a home hobbyist studio.

Fact is, it’s actually a very practical way to go.

  • If I have everything racked up, that means it’s all got a home. A single rack of gear in the corner of the room is going to take up minimal space. That’s ideal for me.
  • I should be able to cable it all up permanently. That should reduce problems caused by regularly unplugging cables, plugging them back in, and other wear and tear.
  • Fingers crossed that I can reduce noise by being careful about where I run the signal cables and where I run the power cables.
  • And, most importantly, most of the gear that isn’t getting used is meant to live in a rack anyway. So it’s kinda a no-brainer!

It’s going to be much better than simply stacking gear on shelving or on top of other gear 🙂

Choosing A Rack

I’ve struggled with this, for a number of reasons.

First off, I’m not sure what I want. I don’t know how much rack space I really need. Other than being a study unit that’ll securely hold my gear, I don’t know what else I need the rack to do.

I’ve also found it quite hard to research. It’s not something my go-to shops sell, so I can’t ask them. Many of the units I’ve found via online search come with very minimal descriptions.

Most racks I’ve seen seem suited for permanent siting in a professional studio. They come pre-assembled, often made from real wood or a veneer over MDF. They look great, and they’ll probably last forever.

Sadly, I need something that’s flat-pack and self-assembly. A pre-assembled wooden rack is going to be too bulky and too heavy to get into the house and into my little room.

But beyond that? It’s going to be a bit of a punt.

What Rack Did I Settle On?

I’ve ordered the Trojan 16U Wheeled Rack from Studiospares. There’s a couple of things that attracted me to this particular rack.

  • The price was really good. It’s cheaper than anything comparable that I could spot at Thomann (not often that’s true), and cheaper than any equivalent 2nd hand racks that I could find on eBay.
  • The rack’s got some sort of additional weight-bearing support halfway back. That’ll be great for my power amp.

It’s showing as in stock, and should be here in a couple of days.

Studio Diary #2: What Should The Studio Be Like?

I’m currently getting my home studio more organised, and along the way I’m sharing my thought process, decisions, discoveries and regrets.

It’s far too tempting – and far too easy! – to go browsing Thomann and Andertons, and put together a wish-list of gear to turn into a fab home studio.

I’m going to sound like a heretic here. I don’t think that the gear alone makes the studio. Not a home studio at any rate. I think what matters most for a home studio is what it’s like to use.

Make It Easy For Yourself

With a home studio, you are producer, engineer, mixer, technician all rolled into one. Oh, and you’re the artist too! And, sometimes, you’re not the only artist using the studio at any one time.

A home studio has to work for you. It has to support your workflow. It has to support your needs. And, yes, somewhere in there, there has to be a place for your gear too.

For me, there’s two things that matter most.

First off, I need to be able to get a recording session up and running as quickly as possible. Whether it’s a real amp or the Kemper, I want to be able to pick one and start recording without any sort of lengthy setup time.

One of the reasons I haven’t recorded anything in the last 18+ months is because all the gear I’ve collected for recording has been stacked in the corner, none of it cabled up at all.

I’ve been favouring my Marshall Origin and Blackstar Studio 10 6L6 amps because of it’s no effort at all to simply plug in, switch on, and go. That’s great for playing, but rubbish for recording.

The second thing that matters to me is the teardown time afterwards. I don’t want to be spending time having to disconnect everything and pack it away afterwards. My gear lives in the corner of a pretty small room, and I need the room for other things most of the time.

Not only does that mean that I need some sort of semi-permanent setup for my existing gear, it also limits what new gear I can bring in. I’d love to have an electronic drum kit for writing and playing the drum tracks, for example … but I know that I wouldn’t use it because of how long it would take to dismantle afterwards.

There’s no right or wrong about what matters. It’s all subjective, and it’s all personal to you. You don’t want the joy sucked out of it simply because your setup doesn’t suit you.

So What Gear Am I Getting? 🙂

The gear that’s been gathering (quite a lot of) dust over the last year? It’s all rack-mount gear. So that’s easy: it’s time to buy a rack to put it all in.

The rack’s going to be flush up against a wall – actually, it’s going to be stuck right in the corner of the room. The rack’ll hopefully have wheels, but I’m still not going to be able to get around the back of it to move cables around.

To make life easier, I’m going to need to get a TRS patchbay to wire everything into. Some of the gear (the Kemper, Two Notes Captors, and our acoustic rehearsal amp and mics) uses XLR; an XLR patchbay will be needed for those.

I’ve been using an Apollo Twin desktop audio interface for the last three years. Hopefully I can simply run a couple of XLR cables from it over to the patchbay, and plug them into different ports depending on what I want to record.

For drums, I’m going to go with one of those percussion pads. It’ll need a stand to sit on, and I’d like to have a kick pedal for it. Over time, I’d like to add a snare and hat too, but I’m not sure if I have the space for those.

Fingers crossed, that should do the job. [It won’t – Ed]