How to set up a small performance space

Yamaha MG06X 6-input mixer with built-in effects

Learn more about high quality basics

For direct recording options, The Mackie Mixer (Mackie ProFXv3 6-Channel Professional Effects Mixer with USB + Software Bundle), a versatile 6-channel mixer with 24 built-in effects, captures your performance and sends your music straight to your computer. Pro Tools First and Waveform OEM recording software/plug-ins are included with this mixer designed for live sound, streaming, and home recording.

For all small to medium sized studios, a robust audio system is essential. The JBL System Bundle (JBL 2x EON610 10″ Class D Two-Way MP Sound Reinforcement Speaker) is an ideal option for a new space. The complete package includes versatile JBL two-way speakers, two tripods, 25ft quality microphone cables and a subwoofer for live performance.

JBL 2x EON610 10″ Class D MP Two-Way Sound Reinforcement Speaker with Accessory Bundle

For acoustic events, DJ performances, duets or live broadcasts with medium to loud musical acts, the H&A PA (H&A 5″ 150W Portable PA System with Bluetooth) is perfect for its ease of disassembly and storage.

Improve and organize

Almost every small performance setup includes a pair of headphones. Usually I think you should start building your space with what you have. However, upgrading to a soft, spongy pair of high-definition monitor headphones is guaranteed to enhance your recording or mixing work. The H&A Closed-Back Studio Monitor Headphones are both affordable and popular.

H&A Closed studio monitoring headphones

Like many musicians, I’ve inherited certain things over the years: extra cables, percussion instruments, and random accessories. To stay organized, try sturdy plastic bins that are great for holding battery bits and other important widgets. Be sure to mark everything with colored tape so it’s in the right place when you look for it. Nothing kills creative motivation more than stopping a session or a show to loot something. Other essentials for rehearsing and performing are on-site audio recording tools such as Tascam (DR-40X four-track digital audio recorder), a simple homemade drum kit, and a studio keyboard with adjustable stand and bench (Yamaha P-45 Compact Digital Piano).

Yamaha P-45 Compact Digital Piano – Keyboard Stand – Bench – Pedal – Headphones

I love the new equipment. And like all freelancers, I go through periods of saving money to have very little. The amount of audio equipment I buy depends on the year or years I have. If you have a dedicated space and the basics, you’re ready to start. Defining a quality music space is subjective – so aim for what moves you.

You want people to enjoy your little performance setup. It takes a bit of research, but depending on your goals, there are quick ways to get started and a world of creative experimentation and advancement to look forward to.