For professional and amateur recording artists, creating a home office space that balances both your professional and creative needs can be a very rewarding endeavor. With a little planning and a clear vision of what you want your studio/office to look like, you can begin making high quality music at a custom office workstation in your own home. Here are some of the basic tools that every musician's home studio needs, whether you are a weekend warrior or a budding professional artist.
A recording device
Before digital technology revolutionized how music was recorded, you had to fill your studio with many different kinds of equipment in order to get the sound you wanted. Today, your computer has everything you'll need in a digital recording device. Many desktops come with an adequate sound card, but if you are serious about your music, consider investing in a card that was made specifically for recording music. Look for one that has a high-quality digital audio converter (DAC), a musical instrument digital interface (MIDI) input and output, and a microphone preamplifier.
Headphones and monitor speakers
A common practice in digital music production is to record songs in a multi-track format. For example, first you record the drums, then the bass, then the guitar or keyboard or horns and so on. An efficient way to do this is to use a pair of high quality headphones to listen to the previously recorded tracks while you record the new one. Look for a pair that is closed back so ambient noise does not bleed out while you are recording the new track.
Monitor speakers are important when you are in a recording studio environment because the sound they broadcast is identical to what was recorded. Some stereo speakers alter the sound by highlighting or dampening certain qualities. This can lead to undesired results in post production.
A high quality microphone
Of all the equipment you invest in, do not skimp on your microphone. Even if you have the best digital editing and effects programs on the market, a bad source can ruin just about any sound. Consider investing in a condenser microphone if you are recording acoustic instruments. If you are a vocal artist, also look for a pop filter. This is an inexpensive piece of material that acts as a barrier between the microphone and hard "p" and sharp "s" sounds.