Finding My Personal Workflow, I Think

So I feel like I’m finally starting to find my own work-flow and finding my style and such, but I have a few problems.

I’m most comfortable making my music clapping, singing, playing things myself, I only have a few shakers and such but I make use of everyday items I have laying around to create sounds I want. It’s more natural for me to “do things with the use of my hands” instead of just “coding” the beats and such. I’m getting a djembe now and some cymbals and claves etc etc to set up a small percussion set, which brings me to problem #1:

I only have one mic, a Carol MUD-525 (“Uni-directional, IMP600 Ohm”) and a Behringer Xenyx 802 preamp to hook it up to my laptop. Now I’m not looking for exactly hi-fi sound quality or anything, just tips on what to buy to record cymbals, a djembe, ringing noises (ie. triangles, bowls) and such percussive things and some singing.
What kind of mics should I get?
Do I absolutely need to get something better to hook the mics up to my computer?
Any other tips and things I should read about are welcome :)

And problem #2, well maybe not a problem, just a question… Like I said I’m more comfortable playing things with my hands and recording that, ie. playing things live. Is there any equipment I should look into to improve my work flow even more in this aspect? I already have a Korg nanokontrol that I frequently use, but that’s about it.

Thanks for the great reply.

The Rode NT4, would it be bad/ok/great for field recordings? I’ll probably end up getting two mics, the NT4 and some other one. It’d be just perfect if I had one mic that’s good for field recordings also.

(Damn, I really need to start saving, shit… :D)

Yeah I’ve been drooling after the Zoom H2 and H4 for the longest time, but I figured there could be a compromise that could suffice for a lot of things. But yeah, considering my budget and needs I’ll probably get the Rode and some other mic…or the Rode and the Zoom…hmmm damn, hard decisions… I’ll see…

What about good, affordable mics for singing? I’m not looking for anything that’s exactly top-of-the-line, around a 100€ maybe.

EDIT: I think I might get a Shure PG27, unless someone has some advice?

I’ll pair it with the SM57, will I be able to get the “bass” of the djembe recorded with these? Any recommendations though? My plan is to record the cymbals, djembe etc and vocals and I’m willing to buy up to three mics if I can afford them. I just don’t want to buy two mics that do the same thing. I hope that makes sense to someone :)

For less money you could buy a Kontakt library that’s probably been recorded way better than what you can do and has the sounds you want. Maybe?

Mics are one thing. What else?

Pre-amp colour. If it is a tube pre-amp, which are generally regarded as better, what colour tube will you use? Stock, or collectors?

Digital convert quality at the AD stage. Coloured or near transparent?

Bit depth?

Sample rate. Higher the sample rate the better.

Just some things to think about also.

what mics you get depend very much on what your room sounds like,… ie is it treated.

the thing is a condenser mic and an omni mic will record absolutely EVERYTHING! even cardioid condensers will record everything, so what you would want if your room isnt treated would be a good dynamic like the sm57 which will take the room out of the equation.

omni’s if close mic-ed and your gain is relatively low can be a decent alternative. the idea is that the gain is so low that the room sound is negligible… but omnis are capable of recording very high volumes before distorting, so the idea is to put it really close to the source, like twice as close as you would with any other mic. omnis are great for capturing real bass as well, as there is almost no proximity effect.

there are some cheap omnis out there,$100 ones that are all based on a similar capsule which actually sound pretty good. or you could build your own for pretty cheap too. good links on the net of how to do that.

for singing in an untreated room i quite like an SM7b, with some nice EQ it can sound nice and bright or airy without recording the room sound. an sm57 or 58 will also kill the room sound nicely,… invest in a good EQ.

once you’ve sorted that out, then what Foo? said about preamps, AD,DA etc, etc,…