For both of our projects we have used all the same equipment, as they are both the same type of projects. For Project Two we did the composition for a film, and for our side project we have done the Foley and composition for an animation.
For our composition we have chosen to use Ableton as a DAW, because we find that it has the simplest and easiest way to record MIDI. A DAW like Pro Tools is meant to be made for recording and mixing, while Ableton is more angled towards DJ’s, which actually makes it a very good DAW for composing.
The studio we chose to use for our composition is the Raven-MIDI, first and foremost because it has a MIDI Keyboard. However, as many of the classrooms also have MIDI Keyboards, what the Raven-MIDI adds are the option of hardware synths, such as the Moog, Virus TI, or Roland TR8. In our compositions we have found the Roland and Moog in particular to be very helpful.
As far as the Foley goes, we recorded some of it in the Post-Production room, which has a very cool little ‘sound proof’ booth. I say ‘sound proof,’ because in one of our sessions, the classroom next door was playing music through their speakers and you could hear it very clearly through the wall. In fact, you could actually hear it clearer in the ‘sound proof’ booth than in the actual Post-Pro room, which was a bit annoying. In that session, we tried angling the mic away from the sound to cut it out, but just to be safe we always waited until the music either stopped or got a bit quieter to record our sounds. Despite that one setback, the Post-Pro is good to use; there are lots of random odds and ends in the box that can be used to make Foley sounds. In the booth, you can also take out the floor boards to reveal gravel or cassette tape underneath, which is helpful for sounds that require walking on different materials.
The microphone we used in the Post-Pro was the Rode NT2, it was very sensitive and was good for picking up really low volume sounds, such as recording a buzzing light. During one of our sessions we hired out the Rode as well as an SM58, just for comparison. The SM58 did awfully, as it is no where near as sensitive as the Rode. Halfway through our session we completely stopped using the 58, and during mixing we deleted everything that was recorded with it.
We also used the Zoom H4n to do some field recording. We went to Keely’s house and went into her garage and basically just recorded bangs and other random things. The Zoom was really cool to use; because it’s so sensitive, its a really weird experience having the headphones on and listening to everything it’s picking up, almost like having 2D sound.
Overall I’m really happy with our equipment choices, and I’ve definitely learnt not to use the SM58 for anything that requires a sensitive mic.
Thanks for reading!