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Open Source Recording Software?

Discussion in 'Home Recording Studio' started by Boognish, Jul 6, 2017.

  1. Boognish

    Boognish Senior Stratmaster

    Jan 31, 2011
    Is there any free open source recording software available that is any good? I'm looking to try to start recording some originals, so I don't forget them, and for backing tracks. I don't have mics or anything like that so some helpful advice on cheap tools I would need would be appreciated. It would also be helpful if the software had a manual or instructions, since I don't know squat about how to record.

  2. alderre

    alderre Strat-O-Master

    May 1, 2014
    New Braunfels
    If you have a mac or an ipad, Garageband is perfect for basic recording. Will need an interface.
    Boognish likes this.

  3. CalicoSkies

    CalicoSkies Senior Stratmaster

    Jun 10, 2013
    Hillsboro, OR, USA
    Audacity is a fairly good free open-source tool for audio recording and editing. It has some multi-track capabilities too.
    Boognish and T Bone Slort like this.

  4. Mr. Lumbergh

    Mr. Lumbergh needs you to go ahead and come in on Sunday, too. Strat-Talk Supporter

    Jan 10, 2014
    Initech, Inc.
    As mentioned, Audacity. Another is Ardour.
    Boognish likes this.

  5. MetalPedal

    MetalPedal Senior Stratmaster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Oct 22, 2016
    Auto-Wah, Canada
    I'm using Studio One 3, Free with a Presonus iOne or iTwo if you need to purchase a DI/interface anyway.
    Boognish likes this.

  6. BallisticSquid

    BallisticSquid Senior Stratmaster

    Oct 12, 2016
    There is a program called Reaper that I've been using for a few years and am happy with. It's not open source or free, but it's cheap :). You can download and try it for as long as you like before you pay. After a month or so a nag screen comes up asking you to cough up $60 or whatever it costs.

    They have a manual and an active forum.

    Ramon Malone and Boognish like this.

  7. TheDuck

    TheDuck Senior Stratmaster

    Jan 12, 2016
    Lil' Rhody
    Reaper (Windows & Mac) has a full function no time limit demo, for Mac, Garageband is the way to go if you want simple.

    Reaper is a full fledged DAW, Garageband isnt, but is also much easier to jump into.

    You'll need an interface, such as a Focusrite Scarlett, or something similar. Other than that, you're good to go.
    Boognish likes this.

  8. jvin248

    jvin248 Senior Stratmaster

    Jan 10, 2014

    ubuntustudio.org . Audacity, Hydrogen, Ardour, LMM, Guitarix, Tuxguitar, Midi systems, lots and lots of software, free and legal. The advantage of Audacity installed on UbuntuStudio is they include a couple hundred effects that are not in the typical Audacity install if you just load Audacity on your existing pc.

    Burn it to a DVD, install it to a usb, and you can boot your existing PC into it without wiping the hard disk; make saves to a flash drive or external HDD. Then take it out and go back to normal software you have. They have links on how to do that on the site.

    Alternatively, you dig out that older desktop you kicked to the garage or basement because Windows got slow with ads and viruses and do a complete fresh install from the Ubuntustudio live DVD/USB. Then you have a dedicated workstation that boots and runs fast.

    As for how to use the software, there are all the youtube videos to walk you through.

    Boognish and alainvey like this.

  9. Robins

    Robins Dr. von Loudster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Dec 22, 2010
    Magix Samplitude Pro X Silver - you have to register your version but it is free. Limited to 4 tracks but you can add as many tracks as you like during recording.
    I love it.

    All the best,
    Groovey and Boognish like this.

  10. Boognish

    Boognish Senior Stratmaster

    Jan 31, 2011
    I didn't realize there was that many out there! I think a buddy has an extra interface that I can use but won't I need a Mic?

    Just to make sure I've got this right: place the mic in front of the amp, the mic is connected by a mic cable to the interface, the interface is connected to the computer by some type of port i.e. USB?, and then click record and start jamming?

    I screwed around with Cakewalk (?) years ago and remember I couldn't figure it out. There was a BUS, and some other things....BUS just stands out in my mind right now...it seemed like rocket science.

  11. TangerineDog

    TangerineDog Senior Stratmaster

    Sep 5, 2015
    The EU
    I have used Audacity on multiple occasions - having a Line Out on your amp is gold.
    I had a budget PC once, Line In quality wasn't the mutts valuables exactly...
    When I put together my blue glowing big tower and got a good Line In jack as part of a good mainboard, it was all fine.

    Now, the only thing that's better on the Albums I bought on CD than on my recordings is the quality of the playing, not the quality of the recording.
    So hardware is key, I guess.

    Line In on your PC is blue. You can also use the headphone jack on the amp and connect it to your PC's mic input. Works fine for me, too.

  12. fezz parka

    fezz parka The Wiggler of Sticks Strat-Talk Supporter

    Mac or PC? Mac = Garageband. PC = Audacity.

  13. Boognish

    Boognish Senior Stratmaster

    Jan 31, 2011

  14. fezz parka

    fezz parka The Wiggler of Sticks Strat-Talk Supporter

    Start with Audacity to get a feel for working in the digital world.
    Paperback Rocker and Boognish like this.

  15. apm1991

    apm1991 Strat-Talker

    Feb 14, 2017
    I use Tracktion it comes free if you buy any of there Berringher interfaces... they even have $20 ones.. Audacity is good for free, I'm really bad with DAW's and Tracktion has been the easiest for me

  16. Paperback Rocker

    Paperback Rocker Nitro-mancer Strat-Talk Supporter

    Sep 18, 2014
    Victoria TX
    Just so you are aware of options . . . I record my tracks on a Zoom H6, then drop those in Audacity as my mixing platform. Works great, and I don't have to be by the computer when recording.