music composer
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Keyboards
choosing a good keyboard a checklist of things to look out for
touch sensitive keyboards the different types of sensitivity available
keyboard weighted keys the four different weighting options for keyboards

yamaha p95 review 88 note digital piano
casio px-330 review light weight keyboard
m-audio keystation pro-88 budget mother keyboard

Sustain Pedals
sustain pedal polarity why pedals are often not compatible with keyboards
yamaha fc4 sustain pedal a well-built yamaha pedal
yamaha fc5 review budget pedal from yamaha
m-audio sp2 review a sturdy m-audio pedal

USB Microphones
best usb microphones things to look out for when buying a usb mic
snowball-blue microphones retro looking classic mic logitech usb mic popular desktop mic samson co1u mic review studio condenser

MIDI Equipment
what is MIDI? with a list of popular control numbers
usb to midi cables for recording your ideas into your computer etc. yamaha UX16 USB/MIDI a midi/USB cable adaptor guitar midi interfaces for transforming your guitar into any midi instrument!

Sound cards
usb sound cards a list of things to look our for when buying one.

sounds cards for the Mac

covering the different types of cards & uses.

maya 44 sound card a short review of this popular sound card.

 


Samson co1u USB condenser mic review

 

The Samson co1u is a studio quality condenser microphone that is intended to be plugged in to a computer via a USB port. It has a 19mm internal diaphragm that is shock-mounted, and uses a typical cardioid pick up pattern for reduction of unwanted noise from the rear of the microphone. The Samson mic weighs about 2 pounds, and has the standard silver metal barrel and silver mesh grill around the condenser. It features an analog to digital converter operating at 16 bits and with a 48K sampling rate. It looks like a real recording microphone, and that's exactly what it is.

 

 

 

Getting the sound from a microphone into the computer can be a real pain as well as an expense. Anyone who has done some home recording knows that if you want to use the studio mics you've known and loved, you're going to have to run them through a preamp, then through an interface of some sort that will feed the signal to the recording software. This makes portable recording difficult, and there are times when you just want to record a vocal track or make a voice recording without setting up all that hardware.

 

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pros

The Samson co1u is designed to do the job. You can connect it to any USB port on your machine, fire up the recording program of your choice, and this Mic will work straight away with most systems. The mic is plug and play and can be used with Macs or PCs, and is compatible with just about any recording software you might use.

It comes with a desktop stand, a clip, a USB cable and a carrying pouch.

The Samson also comes with Cakewalk's Sonar LE DAW software.

This microphone has been praised by many reviewers for the quality of its sound. While it can't compete with classic condenser mics, it does an excellent job of capturing a signal in high-fidelity form, and transferring the material onto the hard drive.

The essential advantage of using a USB microphone is the ease of set up and use, and portability. There are so many uses for a mic like this. If you need to record podcasts, audio e-books, tutorials, audio for video, or just play the guitar and sing to capture a new song you have written, (and you don't want or need to carry around an entire DAW set-up, cables and all!), then USB mic like this is a great option.

Besides doing its primary job in a commendable fashion, the build quality of the microphone is quite high, and it feels and looks sturdy and workman-like in the hand and on the stand.

 

 

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cons

Some online reviews report difficulty in getting the mic going on different PC operating systems, then getting the input set up just right. Obviously, a bit of experimentation is needed (most home recordists are used to that) and some patience.

Some users complain that the noise floor is high, and that there is not as much headroom with the Samson as there is with other condenser mics of similar size and quality, but again, trying various settings will get you the results you want.

You'll have to get or use a better stand if you need it - the supplied stand is not that great.

 

 

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verdict

Overall, the Samson co1u is a great product for the money. It does an excellent job of recording, is easy to set up and use, and is built to last.

 

 

 

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