I’ve been installing more music studio hardware into the rack lately. Because I’ve been pulling the rack in and out more, I ended up pulling the two “L” brackets holding the rack halves loose. So, while having the rack out when modifying and securing the X-Touch Mini into the rack, I took time to strengthen the rack and install additional rack rails.
What the rack itself is made of
The rack is made from two red, wooden “Lack” tables from IKEA. They perfectly match the internal width, more or less, of 19”. Most rack hardware devices do not take up the full width of 19” so the furniture works out perfectly. Best of all is the price, although red isn’t currently an option, at the time of writing this the price of the black table is an amazing $7.99.
Continue reading Securing The Music Studio Rack Furniture
I use an X-Touch Mini in my music studio rack. I decided to do this by using metal rack spacers cut with the X-Touch Mini sitting in the center. By using screws screwed into the sides of the X-Touch Mini’s plastic housing (in front of the rack spacers), it will make it so that pressing the buttons or moving the fader will prevent the device from falling backwards.
Here’s how I modified the X-Touch Mini to mount into the rack.
I started by taking two “1U” rack spacers and used a dremmel to cut the metal into a size that matches the X-Touch Mini. Cutting the rack spacers is the hardest part.
Continue reading Modifying An X-Touch Mini For Rack Mounting
There’s a lot of audio interfaces out there on the used market. It can be really tempting to consider buying an interface that used to cost a lot of money ($500, $1,500, etc) for a cheap price ($150). Most of them work perfectly fine and are in great condition.
The problem? They either don’t have modern connection types (such as using obsolete FireWire) and / or there’s no drivers for them for current operating systems (macOS or Windows) and / or they’re not compatible with your current DAW.
The seller is selling for a reason
Ever wonder why some people with music studio hardware use old versions of operating systems and DAW’s? It’s likely because a piece of hardware only works with older software, likely their audio interface.
Continue reading Buying A Used Audio Interface? Buyer Beware
I had a need to install a relay switch in the studio. I’ll discuss what is a relay is, why I’m installing it and how you can install one too.
What’s a relay?
A relay is a cool little box that has an electromagnetic switch in it. Relays have four to five wires. Ignore the fifth, red wire for now. Two wires you connect to a power (or ground) source you want to turn on / off. The other two wires you connect to a different powered source. When the other power source turns on, it turns on the relay switch.
Continue reading Installing A Relay Switch For Music Studio Hardware
In this post, I detail the physical hardware I use for my desktop studio setup. Rack, mixer, music devices, audio interfaces, audio analyzers, monitors, speakers, power supplies and desktop configuration.
The rack is custom-built from two red IKEA tables. I stacked them and keep them in place with two “L” brackets. I then installed rack rails, cutting the metal rack rails with a dremel tool.
Continue reading Studio Hardware Walkthrough
Here’s a guide on how to install half-rack (compact) studio devices the right way (so that two half-rack devices can be installed side-by-side). The bad news is that no one sells any products where you can just mount your half-rack device and install it into your full-sized (normal) rack. The good news is that I was able to modify a $20-$30 rack shelf and I’m gonna’ show you how I did it…
What I did was do a major modification to a rack shelf with a lip on the front. This is the rack shelf I got.
Continue reading How To Install Half Rack Studio Devices In A Full Rack
I got myself an RCA patch bay for cheap ($20) and needed some short RCA patch cables. I saw they were crazy expensive online so I figured I’d make them myself. The end result isn’t up to my expectations. Here’s how you can do it and why you should probably avoid it…
I bought some RCA terminals, the kind that you screw in wires. I wanted to try using heat shrink to go over the terminals that would melt down to the size of the wire, but I didn’t find any locally that were big enough so I got a size big enough just for the wire. I used speaker wire and electrical tape (vinyl).
Continue reading Don’t Create Your Own Audio Patch Cables?
Here’s a trick I’ve developed over the years when using Reason. When you’re browsing different instrument sounds and you’re trying to compare and choose the best sound, instead of trying to remember which sounds are the best, instead write notes (text) while auditioning sounds. But don’t bother doing this in a note pad or on a piece of paper, do it directly in the rack. How? You do it with the free ReMark Rack Divider (Propellerhead Shop link) by Selig Audio.
Taking Notes While Auditioning Sounds & FXs
When auditioning sounds, many times I’ll come across a patch, device or effect that I think is okay, but feel that I can find something much better. After 10, 20 or 50 different things later, I realize the thing I had before was probably the best thing. Yet, in trying to go back to find it, I end up not finding it and just giving up.
Continue reading Reason: Write Text Notes When Browsing Instruments