I thought having a resources page for current and aspiring producers would be extremely helpful, so here it is!
This list is ever-expanding and will be updated as technology evolves and better equipment for better prices are released. I recommend bookmarking this page for your convenience.
If you look at nothing else on this page, these are the five recommendations you should know about. If you are jumping into music production, these resources are essential.
Bitwig Studio: I typically recommend Ableton Live, but after trying Bitwig Studio, I quickly learned that it is just as powerful. What's the best part, you ask? Bitwig costs less than half of Ableton Live Suite 9! Bitwig is still a fairly new DAW, but it will only get better in the future.
Xfer Records Serum: Not too long ago, I would've, without a doubt, recommended NI Massive as my go-to synth. Serum is a CRAZY virtual synthesizer that is capable of doing so much. I've talked about it a lot on my 'best plugin' lists. Trust me, you're going to want to check it out!
Loopmasters: Loopmasters is like the Amazon.com of samples and loops. You'll find a ton of talented artists and labels that put out high-quality sounds. No matter what genre of music you produce, no matter what kinds of sounds you are looking for, Loopmasters is sure to have them!
Yamaha HS8: Buying your first pair of studio monitors is typically a very confusing experience. My biggest piece of advice would be to NOT cheap out on a pair of bad monitors. The Yamaha HS8 costs $250 a speaker but provides an amazing sound quality. If you really can't afford a pair of monitors at this price point, you'd be much better going with studio monitor headphones rather than cheaping out on a pair of monitors (the Audio Technica ATX-M50x are a great pair of headphones).
Focusrite Scarlett 214: It is recommended that you hook your studio monitors up to a dedicated sound device rather than your computer. You'll also want an audio interface if you're going to be recording real instruments. The Scarlett 2i4 is an amazing interface with an even more amazing price tag. I prefer the 2i4 over the 2i2 because it's only $50 more expensive and has more inputs.
Akai MPK249: This midi controller is the absolute best all-around midi keyboard. It has knobs, faders, a 4x4 drum pad, and 49 keys. If you're looking for a slightly bigger keyboard, there's also the MPK261 and the MPK88.
Novation Launchpad: There is a very good chance you have heard of the Novation Launchpad. It's designed for Ableton Live, but also works in Bitwig, FL
Akai MPD32: If you're looking for a great midi drum pad, the MPD32 has 4x4 drum pads, 8 faders, and 8 knobs. It's a great choice both for music production and live performance.
Ableton Push: If your goal is to produce digital music, but you still want the analog feel of never touching a computer, take a look at the Ableton Push. It allows for both live performance and music production. There are great videos on YouTube of people making entire tracks on it without looking at their laptop screens.
Sennheiser HD 650: These headphones are arguably the best pair of headphones a producer could own. They are comfortable enough for long studio sessions and have a nice flat sound quality.
Audio Technica ATH-M50x: These are arguably the best headphones for the money. For $150, these cans provide a flat sound quality that any producer can appreciate
Sony MDRV6: The MDRV6 closely resembles the classic MDR7506 headphones that were popular in the 80s. Producers still use the classic MDR7506 headphones to mix music. The V6 is a slightly improved, more modern version of the classic cans.
KRK RP5: These studio monitors aren't as good as the Yamaha HS8 (listed above), but if you are new to music production, these monitors have clean mids and highs. The low-end is a bit weak, but you can always buy a studio subwoofer down the road.
JBL LSR305: For the same price of the KRK Rp5 monitors, you can purchase the LSR305. These monitors sound great and have a stronger low-end compared to the KRK RP5.
Here are my favorite music production Youtube channels:
- SeamlessR – FL Studio tutorials (Youtube)
- SadowickProduction – Ableton tutorials (Youtube)
- Mr. Bill – Ableton tutorials (Youtube)
- BassGorilla – Ableton tutorials (Youtube)
- ArtFX – Ableton tutorials (Youtube)
- Multiplier – Ableton Tutorials (Youtube)
- Dorincourt – Reason tutorials (Youtube)
- Beats4Beets – FL Studio Tutorials (Youtube)
- Music Production Tutorials – Tutorials in many DAWs (Youtube)
- Point Blank Music School – Ableton Tutorials (Youtube)
- DubSpot – Ableton Tutorials (mostly for beginners) (Youtube)
- Future Music Magazine – Studio sessions with well-known artists (Youtube)