FAQ

  1. What are you rates?
    Please check out our rates & policies page.
  2. How much do engineers charge per hour on top of the studio rental rate?
    That varies. Feel free to email any of the engineers (see 'Engineers' on the About The Still page) and ask for their rates and availability.
  3. What else should we expect to pay in addition to your hourly rates?
    You must provide your own tape, CD-R, DVD-R and or or a FireWire drive to record to. Although we have CD-Rs & DVD-Rs available, you are encouraged to bring your own recording media in order to save money.
  4. Do I have to pay to you use your instruments?
    There are no instruments or gear that you will be charged extra to use at The Still. You will not be charged for piano tuning but please give us two weeks notice to get the tuner in here before your session.
  5. Is your piano in tune?
    Although we have our piano tuner visit regularly, please let us know if you are are planning on using the piano so that we can make sure that it will be ready for use.
  6. Why does the studio have a 4 hour minimum.
    If we booked sessions less than 4 hours, then we would have to book multiple session a day, which has proven to be problematic in the past. We occasionally make exceptions, but these bookings will be subject to being bumped for a 4+ hour session.
  7. Do you charge for setup time?
    Yes. A session begins at the time it is booked, regardless if the client is on time or not.
  8. Can we break up the day rate over two days?
    No, the day rate is for 1 calendar day only.
  9. Can we get a tour of the studio?
    Of course. Email is easiest, or call and leave a message (512-462-0408). Sometimes we can do the tour that day, sometimes a week or so away. It depends on the sessions that are active. The only thing we ask is that you are serious about recording here.
  10. Do you have a demo CD of tracks from The Still!?
    Yes, if you schedule a tour to see the studio and are serious about doing a session, we'll play you a variety of tracks. We can also send you home with a cd if you'd like to also hear the material on system you are familiar with.
  11. Do you work weekends?
    Of course. In fact, weekends are usually the first time slots to get booked.
  12. Can we come in early or the night before to set up?
    No. Sessions begin at the time you schedule them. Much of the engineering work begins as you start setting up (setting up mics and, "Where do the drums go? Where should I put my amp?") so we have to charge for this time. If you want to come in the night before you would need to book a 4 hour session on that day.
  13. What's a producer?
    A producer is involved will many aspects of making an album. This process can begin as early as pre-production and include attending rehearsals and shows. Producers will often become involved with arrangement changes, song choices, session player selection, scheduling, and budgeting. Many producers have their own styles which may also include engineering or perhaps a more hands off approach. Most often a producer will be responsible for helping the artist achieve their best performances and steering the album into it's best potential.
  14. What's an engineer?
    An engineer is someone who understands the operation and maintenance of recording studio equipment. They will facilitate obtaining the sounds that the producer and artist ask for. They are responsible for all technical aspects of the recording.
  15. What's a studio?
    A studio is a space designed and acoustically treated for the recording and listening to sound.
  16. Can you do mobile recording at a club, church or rehearsal room?
    Yes. We can record up to 32 channels at 192kHz on location. Our price varies based on how complicated a setup your needs require. Please contact us to talk about your specific project.
  17. Do you do mastering?
    Yes.
  18. Can you transfer my old vinyl/cassette/reels/etc. to CD-R?
    Yes.
  19. Are you currently accepting interns?
    Yes, but serious inquires only please. There is a minimum of 10 hours/week for any intern.
  20. Does The Still hire engineers or assistants?
    No, The Still doesn't have any full or part time employees. All our engineers are freelance. There are no assistant, runner or tape op jobs available. But if you are a competent engineer who can bring in your own sessions please contact us - we would love to talk about how we can work together.
  21. Is it true that no one makes analog tape now?
    It is true that the plant that made tape closed down in January 2005. However they are now back in production and two more companies are planning to hit the market.
  22. Does The Still have blank tape for sale?
    No. There are several local companies where you can buy tape. (Pro Tape & Guitar Center)
    Also, there are many places online that sell tape. TapeTape.com sells "used" tape but keep in mind that this tape can be less reliable.
  23. Can I bring my own engineer for my sessions?
    If the person isn't listed on our Engineers page then we'll need to talk to them and see if they are qualified to run the studio here.
  24. Is The Still non-smoking?
    Yes, smoking is only allowed outside the studio.
  25. Can we all play live in the studio?
    Yes, and this is our preferred way to record gigging bands. However it isn't our only way of tracking. We can isolate the drums, guitars and bass or run them live in the same room. Even when isolating we can have all the players in the same room. Doing live tracks with acoustic instruments is possible, but remember that if you are also singing at the same time, or in the same room with a drum kit, then 100% isolation becomes near impossible.
  26. How long will it take to record my album?
    This has a lot to do with your band. A well-rehearsed band can lay down most of the basic tracks for an album in two days. Overdubs can take anywhere from one to seven days depending on the amount of work, experimentation, and pickiness. For mixing, budget three hours per song or so at least. A guitarist-singer who has their tunes down can track hours of live stuff in one day, mix it all the same day and have a decent live demo. It really depends what you are looking for and how efficiently you work in the studio. Always add time to your estimates! Some albums take days others take months.
  27. What should we record to?
    The first decision would be between analog and digital. If you are on a budget and will be doing lots of overdubs and/or edits then digital may be the only cost effective solution for you. In that situation we can talk about "rental" or "work" reels that may be used during tracking then bouncing to digital.
    For smaller projects that don't require lots of overdubs or editing, we find our 1" 8 track to be awesome sounding.
  28. How much tape will I need?
    For the 24-track we usually run at 30 ips, which gives you 16 minutes per reel, though we can run at 15 ips for 33 minutes per reel.
  29. What kind of music do you record?
    We don't have a genre focus. Instead we prefer to work with all sorts of artists, helping them reach their individual goals.
  30. Can you make full color cdRs & dvdRs?
    Yes. We have a profession micro boards duplication system with on cd printing. Artwork can be provided in the sure thing file format. The software is free for download:
    http://www.microboards.net/filemgmt/visit.php?lid=145
  31. What kind of hard drive should I buy?
    We recomend that you buyd a usb2.0 or firewire hard drive with 80GB or greater capacity. If you aren't purchasing a name brand drive, please ensure that the drive uses the oxford 911 chipset.
  32. What kind of tape should I buy?
    Although we prefer Quantegy 456 or BASF 900 you can purchase any tape you desire. Our machines are aligned prior to each new session based on the tape being used for that session.
  33. Why pay to record in a studio when I can do it at home?
    If you don’t have good solid sounding rhythm tracks (drums, bass, rhythm guitar), nothing you do later can overcome that. Often a band will come in and track drums, bass and a rhythm guitar to one of our analog machines or our high end A/D converters, with our killer mic-pres, mics and a good engineer. Then they've got a solid foundation take them home and have fun. Then when you are ready to mix and/or master you can bring the the project back to the Still where you can make use of our acoustically designed & treated room, high-end plugins, analog mixing console, and racks of outboard analog processing.
  34. What is tracking?
    Tracking is the time to set up the whole band, parts of the band, a large MIDI rig, an orchestra, or just a single musician with a single instrument. Sometimes called "basic tracks" or "rhythm tracks", it is this foundation on which the entire recording will be based. Often drum tracking will happen first, but be sure to sit down with your engineer to plan your process so that you aren't wasting any of your band members' time or ours!
  35. What are overdubs?
    After the initial tracking is complete, other musical "parts" may be needed. Usually these will include vocals, both main and backing parts, instrumental solos, or other more time consuming performances. Typically, these recordings are the finishing touches of the complete musical performance.
  36. What is mixing?
    After the recording is complete, all of the elements must be blended or "mixed" into a final stereo or other multi-channel form. At this point, most of the special effects are applied and relative volumes and equalization are set.
  37. What is mastering?
    Mastering is the process of preparing the final mixed product for manufacturing. These processes include sequencing and editing of songs into their final form, equalization and level adjustments for each song in order to even out large differences between various mixes, and preparation of mechanical parts necessary for delivering the entire product.
  38. What can I do to be prepared for my session?
    a. Planning for the end use of your project.
    Even before you record your first note, its very helpful to decide what your final product should be: a CD for release, a demo, MP3 files for Internet distribution. Knowing the answer to this question can save you a lot of money and time. If you need help with these questions feel free to talk to one of our experienced engineers or designers. Most of us are musicians and have been through this process too!
    a. Prepare your instruments
    If there was ever a time for your instruments to be in top condition, this is definitely it. Whether it is new strings and perfectly adjusted intonation, or a couple vocal lessons and some good herbal tea, your preparation is key to the success of your recording. If you need assistance with finding local music stores to buy new brushes or get your guitar set-up, we are happy to help.
    c. Rehearse!
    Sometimes artists overlook potential difficulties and thorough rehearsals may be the best way avoid that particular problem. Be sure to have at least two rehearsals for each song that you will be recording. It is also a good idea to record your rehearsals so that you can hear potential problem spots and fix those issues before the recording process begins.

 

 

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