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Stick With What You Know And Make Better Beats

  1. Fade

    Fade

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    I'm always on a never-ending quest to make the perfect beat, and I think deep down you are too. With all of the studio hardware and software to choose from, it can often be overwhelming to figure out what to use and what is best for your particular setup.

    This is why it's important to not worry about all of that and instead just stick with what you know - and you will make better beats.


    Buying The Latest And Greatest

    It's a no-brainer that you don't need to have the best of the best in order to make some amazing music. Don't believe me? Just take a look at some of the most classic Hip Hop albums ever, and see how they were made. SP1200, MPC60, Casio keyboards, and the list goes on. These were just some of the many hardware pieces that various Hip Hop producers were using back in the day to concoct their dopest creations.

    The problem with the market today is that there's simply just too much to choose from. I know it's very tempting to want to buy the latest version of this or that, but it's exactly the opposite of what you should be doing.

    A few months ago when I saw that Native Instruments was coming out with a new version of Maschine (Maschine Studio), I freaked out and I immediately thought to myself, "I have to have this NOW". Of course, once the excitement wore off, I realized that I don't NEED it. I wanted it - big difference. I could have ordered Maschine Studio right away and added it to my setup, but I already have the Maschine MK1 and I simply love it, so why should I replace it?

    When I first decided to buy Maschine, I first went and looked at as many YouTube videos I could find and just learn about this thing inside and out. Then when I finally bought it, I didn't even make a beat for the first two weeks! Instead, I took that time to just try everything out and learn it like my life depended on it. Guess what? When I first sat down to make a beat, it was so straightforward, since I had mastered the gear (in my own way).

    Focus On One Thing

    I remember when Afriquedeluxe, who was on here at IllMuzik years ago, first joined up and entered the Beat This! Competition. He was only 14 or 15 at the time, but he was coming out with really dope beats, and actually winning a bunch of them. Everyone thought he had all sorts of gear in his crib, but that couldn't be farther from the truth because all he had was an old computer and an old version of some old software.

    When I first found out that he was only using an old computer, I couldn't believe it. But then as he explained his setup, he made me realize that nobody needs tons of studio gear to get the job done. I've seen videos of producers with tons of hardware, all tied into Pro Tools, and many of them even have old gear just lying around as some sort of nostalgic thing they have going on.

    If you instead were to focus on just one or a few items, and use those as the main part of your studio, you will spend more time making beats, and less time maintaining your equipment!

    I once knew a guy that had a decent amount of gear in his lab, but the problem was that he was a computer lover, so he focused a lot on that - which is great. Even though he mainly used Propellerhead's Reason to make music, he still didn't really make a lot of music. Why? Because he would always spend a lot of time tweaking his computer "to make it run faster", or "to speed up my RAM". As a result, he never got anything done, and his music suffered for it.

    Conclusion

    If you want to make better beats, your best bet is to stick with one or just a few items in your studio, AND MASTER THEM. Take the time to learn the ins and outs of your setup so that you can then focus solely on making beats - and your beats will be much better.

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    Last edited: Jan 15, 2016