How much does a good recording studio cost in Melbourne?
Updated: Apr 27
The cost of hiring a recording studio in Melbourne can range from as little as $50 per hour, up to $400 per hour. The factors that decide this are quite interesting. Let's have a look at them.
The first thing that will determine the cost is the obvious one, the size of the studio. If you have a full band to record with drums, guitars and vocals, you will need a studio big enough so that the band can record live all at the same time so you can get a live vibe when recording. Smaller studios might be able to record drums separately, but part of the magic that happens in the studio, can be captured with everyone performing live together while being able to see each other.
Any large studio you will be paying anything from $150 per hour to $400 per hour. The good news is that recording studios that have live rooms and also come with great gear!
Smaller studios have less overheads and can therefore charge less per hour. There are some great studios in Melbourne that charge under $100 per hour and are big enough to squash a band in without the luxury of high ceilings, 25 guitar amps to choose from and a vintage Neve console.
If you don't need all this space then you will have a lot of options under $100 and might even find some great deals for less. I guess the thing to keep in mind when searching for a studio, space and gear isn't everything. Getting along with the engineer / producer is a lot more important!
The next thing that will determine the cost of the studio is the gear they have. Larger studios will have all the gear you ever dreamt of at your fingertips including vintage Neumann microphones, Neve preamps and lot's of cool instruments for you to use. However with all this gear comes a higher hourly fee, and with that higher cost comes pressure. Imaging the pressure to perform if you are paying $600 per hour!
Many smaller studios like Beat Tank, have a great selection of vintage and modern gear and the engineers have learnt how to get the most out of it. Just remember that the engineer/producer is a lot more important to your end result than the gear.
ENGINEER OR PRODUCER?
Next on the list that will determine the cost of the recording studio is if the studio only comes with an engineer, or a music producer. If you want to know the difference, check out our blog HERE on the role of the record/music producer. Basically if you only want someone to twiddle the knobs in your recording session, you only need an engineer but if you want someone to help you add instruments and play with the form of the song, you will need a music producer. In larger studios you will probably be paying for both as there is so much gear that the producer will need an engineer to assist. Ina smaller studio you can get some very talented producers that will give you the option of being an engineer if that's what you want, or step into the role of producer if you need that as well. At the end of the day though, you should ask the recording studio before booking what you are getting before booking.
1 X HOUR OR 1 X DAY OF RECORDING?
The next thing that will determine the amount you pay per hour, and this will apply to every recording studio, is weather you book it for 1 x hour or a full day. Every studio is going to charge you much more for 1 x hour than they willfor the full day. Discounts of 10-20% can be found if you book for the full day. If that means you need to plan your material and write a few more songs before booking, it could end up saving you heaps of money of you are recording a full album!
At Beat Tank Studio here in Melbourne, we like to think we are a great value studio. We have a good amount of gear, some vintage outboard, a large recording console and heaps of cool instruments to including guitars, keyboards, synthsand mics. We have a dedicated live room big enough to record a small band or drums and a great vocal booth for recording vocals. We include a music producer for free at your disposal with over 20 years of experience in recording. All this for well under $100 an hour! Seems pretty good to us (but we are bias of course) lol.
If you want to know more about our studio, don't hesitate to contact Ben the studio owner any time HERE.