Soft Audio - live

By: Soft Audio  05/12/2011
Keywords: compact disc, Stereo Recording

Live Stereo Recording

Capture your live performance to stereo 24 bit digital onsite at your location. Aimed at acoustic acts who want a true-to-life recording of their recitals, we come to your performance or rehearsal space, place a stereo pair of high quality microphones and make a series of recordings. This recording method aims to create the most accurate picture of the event as possible. The raw materials are then taken back to the studio for editing and mixing to compact disc audio. Overdubs (adding or replacing extra tracks/instruments) at the studio are also possible.

The resulting product could be used to introduce your act to prospective customers, promotional use or for sale at your public performances.

This service is ideally suited to the following types of artists:

  • Choral or vocal groups or solo artists
  • Traditional music groups
  • Classical instrumentalists or orchestras
However, any type of performance can be captured, although this technique is not recommended for amplified acts.

We can also do small runs of duplication, or organise larger runs or commercial pressings for you. Conversions of your recordings to web friendly formats (eg. mp3) are also available. For the ultimate in polished product, we recommend that you consider mastering your cd with a reputable mastering engineer, who specialises in preparing materials for commercial release. We will arrange this for you if required.


The rule of thumb for calculating how much recording and studio time you need is about half/half; the same amount of time spent recording will probably be needed in the studio. If you're recording a live recital, then the recording time is the same as the actual performance. If, however, you are making recordings specifically (ie. you want to perform the same track(s) multiple times to attain close to perfection), then you should probably allow about 1 hour of recording time per 5 minutes of performance. Don't forget to double this for the total recording and studio time required. We are more than happy to provide estimates based on your project's requirements.

Our hourly rates are set based on the size of the project, travelling distance (for locations outside of Co. Dublin), numbers of copies required and ancillary requirements (eg. mastering, pressing). We will quote you on your particular needs. However, we also have two fixed price 'packages' for the most common types of project.

Introductory Packages

  • Recital Package - 200 Euro (including VAT)
  • This package is aimed at recording a complete live performance from start to finish (ie. no multiple takes). It includes up to 2 hours of recording and up to 2 hours of studio time. Two copies of the mixed CD are included and a CD data copy of the raw/edited tracks. This package is suited to live acts who wish to demonstrate what what they sound like to prospective booking agents.

  • Promo Package - 350 Euro (including VAT)
  • This package is designed for making a 4 track (about 20 minutes of material) promo CD, including multiple takes, in your rehearsal (or specifically hired) space. Rather than a documentary of a live performance (described in the package above), this aims to produce a more polished product for promotional purposes (eg. scoring a recording contract). It includes up to 4 hours of recording and up to 4 hours of studio time. Two copies of the mixed CD are included and a CD data copy of the raw/edited tracks.

Recording Preparation

Here are some guidelines to follow to prepare for a recording session. These are fairly general and apply to any recording process.

  • Be as well rehearsed as you possibly can. The quality of the material being recorded eclipses the quality of the actual recording every time.
  • Ask all performers to wear comfortable 'quiet' clothes and remove any noise making items (eg. jewellery) for the recording. Make sure instruments are well maintained and do not rattle or make unwanted extraneous noise.
  • Switch off all mobile phones and pagers (not even vibrate mode). These can interfere with the recording.
  • Make sure the environment where you plan to make the recording is as quiet as possible. This includes eliminating (or reducing) the number of people who are not directly involved in your session from the immediate acoustic environment.
  • If possible, supply the recording engineer with other recordings, or invite them to listen to you prior to the session. The more familiar they are with your act and how you want your recording to sound like, the better.

Technical Detail

Our roadkit consists of a number of pairs of high quality recording microphones by Neumann, Audio-Technica, Sennheiser, AKG and Oktava. We choose the most appropriate microphone pair and placement technique for the type of act and acoustic environment.

The microphones are fed into a Great River microphone preamplifier reknowned for its transparency. The preamplified signal is then sent to an RME analog to digital converter which converts the analogue signal to 24 bit digital. The digital audio is then fed into a laptop computer (and a safety recorder) where it is stored.

After the recording session, we return to the studio, load in the raw tracks into our digital audio workstation and edit and sequence the tracks. The tracks are then mixed and dithered to compact disc format. We also supply the edited (and raw) 24 bit files on a separate data cd, which can be used for subsequent remixing or mastering.

preproduction - recording - mixing - remixing - mastering
music - radio spots - jingles - soundtracks - audio conversions/transfers - multimedia

Keywords: compact disc, Stereo Recording

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