CD recording -- how much?

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by waynefiler, Jul 2, 2012.

  1. waynefiler

    waynefiler Member

    Just thinking of a possible project for my band and a CD sprung to mind.

    Ive looked on a few sites but can't find any prices.

    Can anyone out there shedsome light on the matter or is it "if you have to ask, you can't afford it!"

  2. ian perks

    ian perks Active Member

    Contact Doyen Recordings

    01457 820138
  3. JesTperfect!

    JesTperfect! Member

    Or indeed, us at KMJ Recordings.

    The reason that we don't have a 'price list' is because it would be as long as your arm!

    There are dozens of different types of recording sessions - every band/group's requirements are different, and therefore we (and everyone else that we know of!), tend to wait for enquiries, and then we'll respond with a tailor-made quote, so you know exactly what you'd be getting for your money, rather than having a vague idea based on a few numbers off a website.

    All of that said, while clearly I would highly recommend ourselves (who wouldn't after all?!), you should get as many quotes as possible. However, one needs to bear in mind the old saying 'you pay peanuts, you get monkeys'.

    There's a reason that good recording companies are more expensive than bad ones - there's nothing worse than a band practicing for weeks, giving up a whole weekend of their time, and a lot of cash to find that the final product doesn't meet expectations.

    There's a massive amount of information in the thread I've put a link to below - everything that a band needs to consider when they're thinking about undertaking a recording project.

    In the meantime, get in touch for a quote, or if you've any questions we'll be happy to answer them!
  4. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    As my esteemed business partner has said, most of us will give you a quotation based on what exactly it is you need.

    One point I'd add (and this comes from both my experience as a player on recordings and as KMJ Recordings) is that in my opinion it's important to look for someone with experience in working with brass bands.....all of my previous clients have found it useful that they don't, for example, have to explain anything that's going on....there have been times where we've been asked to re-record bands that have recorded with others where the end product wasn't up to their expectations (based either on price or because they 'knew a man with a microphone or two!)....which is less than an ideal situation both financially and from the point of view of wasted time and effort as Jess said above.
  5. Active Member

    Sorry Ian, but you're a couple of years out of date.
    Doyen Recordings is now part of the World of Sound organisation, 01933 445430.
  6. geo123

    geo123 New Member

    Contact Keith Farrington at Music House Productions. He recorded our band CD last year and the result is fantastic. He was a producer for Doyen for a number of years, before setting up on his own. As has been stated above, whoever you choose it is very important to find someone who has a lot of brass band experience, as well as the proper equipment designed for classical style recording. There are plenty of people about who will do it cheaply, but the end results are not always great. He will tailor make a package around what you want so you wont find prices on his website.
  7. refman8

    refman8 Member

    Fully agree. Contact Keith at Music House Productions. Our CD is in production as we speak. I have heard the 'master' and his attention to detail is second to none. Keith is very experienced and gets the best possible results. He is also a pleasure to work with too!!
  8. DRW

    DRW New Member

    Hi. I've found these companies that give useful pricing information.

    There are clearly some experts here giving good advice. It's also worth checking if there is an enthusiastic amateur sound engineer in your own circle of contacts. A DIY recording project can be very satisfying and excellent results are perfectly achievable with relatively modest (but appropriate) equipment. Potential losses are minimised too if a) the band isn't on form on the day of your investment and b) sales of CDs are less than predicted.
    I echo Keith's advice, the most important thing is to use someone that really knows what a brass band should sound like.

    It is important to also have a business hat on while planning a CD recording; it is very easy to get carried away with the glamour of having your very own band CD and forget about what happens to those 100s of dusty, unsold CDs 10 years down the line in the band store.
    Before signing up to a package which includes a large CD run (500 / 1000), realistically predict volumes of sales.
    From my experience, most sales are to band members and their friends and family, so you should be able to get a pretty accurate idea of how many this will consume. Next, think about the size of your concert audiences and estimate how many of your regulars will purchase. (10 - 20% from my experience (remember not to double-count family and friends!)). The 3rd stage of sales is the steady 'drip' at subsequent performances. Unless you are a universally known band or one that travels to locations far and wide, these sales are likely to be relatively low; on average, I'd plan for only a few (0 - 5) at each event. Buying a large run recording package will reduce the cost per CD, but don't forget that profit / payback only comes when they are sold.
    Also, generally the older the recording, the less reasons there are for someone to want to buy it. Most people want a souvenir of their time when they heard the band live; if the CD has mostly different players playing mostly different music, it really doesn't tick the souvenir box.
    Having said that, these can be shifted with a discounted combined deal when you release your 2nd CD so forward planning

    I'd wholeheartedly recommend going ahead whatever your budget. If you can afford to employ a good professional and are confident it is a good investment, then go for it. If that type of outlay is not possible then there are other, cheaper options available to explore; there are future professionals out there looking to practice their skills / techniques and increase their portfolio before taking the final step in making it their 'bread and butter.'
  9. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Some good advice there. Perhaps I may qualify a few things from my / our perspective?

    Indeed, but as Jess has already indicated, this can be a double edged sword....and it doesn't just include 'amateur sound engineers'.

    One of my clients initially chose to be recorded by professional sound engineers of whom they had experience - but in a sound reinforcement background. The resultant recording was such that it actually caused a huge divide in the Band politically (it had cost them a lot of money and there were some who thought it should be released regardless of its 'quality'). It's a different skill need to be really quite careful who you choose to work with.

    Absolutely, but in my opinion, it's not just that (although it's a bonus). Our Company policy is that the production team should have a thorough knowledge of whatever medium it is that we're recording. We ~don't~ (unless specifically requested) involve the MD in running the sessions, for example. It's his / her job to conduct the Band and bring the best out of them that way....and it's ours to bring they best out of them from the other side of the glass. Their input is welcome, of course, but it's not their job.


    Just to qualify, the main reason that quotes are based on 500 or 1000 units is because that's where the price break for replication vs duplication is. The former is technically superior and results in less disc failures. You'll also find that CDR burning of 300 units is more or less equivalent to pressing 500 discs. So you get more for your money. The difference in manufacture of 1000 vs 500 is under £ the ~potential~ for profit is much better....~if~ you get your projected market right as DRW has righfully said.

    One other thing to bear in mind is the licencing. If you licence with a Limited Manufacture Licence from the PRS for Music you're only allowed one production run for that can't remake any more if you sell them. So 'guesstimate' wisely.

    There are - it's certainly a case of cutting your cloth.....but even then it's a case of caveat emptor.... ;)
  10. NAS

    NAS Member

    Rainford recently with Jess and Keith at KMJ recordings. I can highly recommend them. Their ear for detail was absolutely top notch!
  11. simonium

    simonium Member

    Of course this is all very pretty, reasoned, polite, courteous and mature. I want a price war! Best price for cash, part-exchange of dusty old CDs and tapes to help the deal, the classic "but online it's..." style dickering etc. come on guys!
  12. DRW

    DRW New Member

    I think we're agreeing Keith. The intent of my post was not to undermine those that make a living from recording. Apologies if it came across that way.

    I'm speaking from a perspective of personal experience. For a number of years my band discussed the potential of making a CD. We were not getting anywhere because the cost / priority was prohibitive. The only way we got it off the ground was to do it ourselves.
    Luckily a band member was an enthusiastic amateur and we were able to do it financially risk free. The result was a CD which receives overwhelming feedback, including from those who have no idea it is a DIY effort. It achieves everything we aimed for and with almost zero outlay (licensing and venue hire were the only upfront costs).

    Would it have been better quality if done by a reputable company? Almost certainly.
    Would it have met any of our aims better? No.
    Would we have produced a CD by now? Probably not.

    If you can afford a reputable professional, this is by far the best option; anyone can purchase appropriate equipment and learn appropriate recording techniques, but only experience coupled with a good ear (or 2) will produce the best results.
  13. ploughboy

    ploughboy Active Member

    here here - is no one prepared to throw at least a ball park figure around?
  14. DRW

    DRW New Member
    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Package 1. One days recording, up to 3 days mixing, editing and mastering back in the studio. All artwork design and origination to print and 500 CDs with full colour artwork, shrink wrapped and delivered to you.
    All this for £1800 (1000 CDs extra £300)
    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]
    Package 2.
    Two days recording and all editing mixing and mastering back in the studio. All artwork design and origination to print and 500 CDs with full colour artwork, shrink wrapped and delivered to you.
    All this for £2000 (1000 CDs extra £300)
    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]
    Bare Bones Package.
    You may want to handle all your own artwork design and CD duplication and Reelsound is happy to come out and record and edit a great master for you. Recording costs £350 for the first day and £300 for subsequent days and editing/mixing days in the studio.
    [/FONT][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]
  15. ploughboy

    ploughboy Active Member

    I've done recordings playing with a band where Reelsound have been the company recording. In my opinion there are much better companies out there for the same sort of costs.
  16. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Not in the slightest :)

    I guess my comment on this would be that there are reasons that bands like Leyland, Faireys and now Brighouse are choosing us....and, to be fair, they're the same reasons that bands like Sidmouth Town (and the Mighty Emley, Garry!) choose us....

    As you say, though, it could just be that their aims and aspirations are different....I'm fairly certain that I bore reference to why bands may want to record in the thread Jess referred to was certainly in the distillation of that thread that formed the basis of the presentation I gave to the NABBC a few years ago.
  17. Pete Meechan

    Pete Meechan Member

    Have used Keith (KMJ Recordings) several times and can happily back up all the positive comments about KMJ.

    In one recording, we were a little unfortunate to have a change in flight paths at Heathrow, and ended up with 747's coming over the top of the band's recording venue - not that you can tell from the recording itself. Genius!
  18. catastraphone

    catastraphone Member

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