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Practice Space - home recording. Need some help/ideas/advice

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Howdy y'all, I picked up the Gibson Learn and Master guitar series 8 or 10 years ago, was a member of the old forum, life happened my playing slowed WAY down, and I've reacquainted myself with making music again over the last few months.  I've tried a few other forums but they always end up turning toxic fast, and anyone with the "wrong" way of thinking get's ridiculed...I always loved the community Steve fostered and thought this is the place to ask!

My current struggle other than playing the right notes at the right time, is my practice space.  

Sorry no pics, picture a combo stool/guitar stand, music stand, and a combo amp in a corner (2.5' x 4'). I don't have a good spot for gear/tools/books, I do hang 2 guitars on the 4' wall.  I'm also wanting to expand to a laptop+interface+daw and some monitors or headphones (depending on how much noise I want to make) to do some playing or recording so I can capture my own rhythm tracks, and use some amp sims.

I'm looking at one of the Presonus combo packs (like $329 for interface, monitors, headphones, mic, some cables).  I don't gig, I just like to record myself and would like a little better than using my phone to make rhythm tracks.  I also want to start exploring the world of amp sims.  I'll be recording my electric through the interface most of the time and the actual space is a bit larger, it's just the corner will most things will reside.

Guess I'm wondering how to make a corner a little more useful, and how to keep it under $500 (to start lol) including the combo pack.

My thought is to get something like an ikea kallax or other 13" cube setup in a 6 cube (2x3) configuration (either hack an ikea one, or get a 13" cube shelf knockoff from other big box store). That's 44" wide and 30" high, and 15" deep. Should hold music books, gear, and have a spot on top of the shelf for laptop + monitor speakers for when its time to play or record.

Anyways...any thoughts, advice, ideas? 

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@QuietlyBold  Welcome back! You're probably still finding your way around the new neighborhood. Here is Steve's piece on setting up a practice space. Attached below is a 2015 booklet from DiskMakers on setting up a home studio. I hope these can get you thinking.


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@DianeB I'm sure that @QuietlyBold appreciates the pdf on setting up a home studio.  But so you know, I also appreciate it.  I haven't shared on here the fact that my wife and I are moving after 41 years in the same house.  We are "moving to town" as the expression goes (in the rural community).  I won't go in to the significance of the expression.  It means much more than just changing mailing address.

But because of the move, which occurred last Friday, I haven't been practicing and probably won't for another week or so. 

But............. the new house has a room that is huge and is going to be solely Ron's studio/music room/man cave!  so I am interested in any suggestions for making it an ideal practice space.

Thank you!

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Thanks @DianeB.  Yes the space is already sacred...trying to next level it but its a small space!  I checked Steve's post and will make sure any mods I make to the space satisfy those tenets.  It sounds like my ideas for the space are headed in the right direction.


@matonanjin i wish I had a big space. That's great!  I also learned a lot from articles on sweetwater.

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Well I don't know about the space, but you should definitely invest in an audio interface, DAW, and maybe a microphone. The interface should have at least 2 inputs. Mine has 2x2, but you can only use 2 channels at a time. You can also get a free version of Pro Tools for you DAW. Pro Tools First doesn't have all the tracks of the full version, but it is more than capable of recording quality guitar tracks and a lot more. 

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I took over my son's old bedroom which is like 10x10 as my studio.

One thing I wish I could do is " sound proofing", but I think that will have to wait for about 5yrs to move into a different house after I stop working. 

Now your issue. 

I'm not sure you're going to need studio monitors. If you're recording electric direct due to volume,  then mixing via monitors maybe pointless. 

I use headphones only 

The Personus or Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 combo packs are good. 

I have an ikea desk on one side with books and computer and mixer

On the other side has a small IKEA shelf with music books and my dvd player

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10 hours ago, QuietlyBold said:

Thanks everyone, looks like I'm on the right track 🙂

Im looking forward to the day I have a dedicated studio space too... Plenty of good suggestions here, so you should do well.

For recording gear (as Doug said) I bought the Focusrite Scarlet 2i2 combination kit, with the interface (2 channels in 2 channels out), a good set of over the ear headphones, and a microphone. All great stuff, and the worlds top selling unit. I comes with a raft of "plug in's" (recording software) and all you really need. You'll need to select a DAW, (Digital Audio Workstation) to record this, and after "demo-ing" a few, I settled on REAPER.  It's a free to try program with a "sugested" license agreement (not expensive). There are lots of videos on YouTube to show you how to record with it.  It''ll take a while to learn, but you dont need to know everything to produce a decent recording.

Recording yourself is a HUGE leap forward, and I strongly recommend it to ANYONE, regardless of skill level. You can hear what you acutally sound like and work on your skills, and playing songs. You dont HAVE TO share it if you dont want to... 

Good Luck and Happy Tunes; Neil

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I mentioned above we are moving and the new home has a music room/studio/man cave that is huge.  This is it!  This was shot before the move and I would be too embarrassed to show it to you now.  But it is mine!!!!   All mine!!!!! 😉🙃  It is a shambles with boxes everywhere.  But I hope that I can show you an organized practice room in the near future.

@DianeB is helping me with that by PM.   Thanks Diane!

Practice has been almost non-existent the last couple months.  But, hopefully, in the very near future I will have no excuse. 

And, I took a Zoom lesson with @Steve Krenz recently (before starting the move).  Predictably, it was hugely helpful and educational.  Of course it was! And I purchased 4 more lessons.

So with the great practice space and lessons with Steve I am going to have no excuse to not progress and finish up L&MG!!!!!  Finally.


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