Quick comparison

Almost 10 years ago I embarked on my digital recording journey. I’d done a lot of live mixing in the past on analogue gear, but this was a new path.

I started off recording through one of those little lapel mics into my computer’s built-in sound card, and when I used MIDI backing tracks, they just used the standard “General MIDI” instruments provided by that card. One of the first songs I did was a cover of Chicago’s “Hard To Say I’m Sorry”. I found the MIDI backing track online, and just recorded the vocals. I thought it turned out great!

“Hard To Say I’m Sorry” recorded circa October 2009

Fast forward 10 years, and the gear I’m using is a little more sophisticated, but I thought I’d revisit an old recording, and that was the one I chose. This time I also recorded the guitar parts, but other than that it’s pretty much the same arrangement, just with a little more panache.

“Hard To Say I’m Sorry” recorded August 2019

So the big question is: Can you hear the difference 10 years, a diploma, and a few grand’s worth of gear makes?