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The Bedroom Recording eZine, Issue #102 -- Archiving your projects
October 20, 2007
Issue #102 -- Archiving your projects

In the business of recording, archival is not the first thing that comes to your mind usually. I think it is a critical last step in your recording process, because you never know what might go wrong.

Why? If you send in a master for production, all sorts of things could happen necessitating you making a new one. Or you might want to do a remix later down the road. Or the artist might want some of the flubs on a "personal" CD. Anything!

Unless you have access to unlimited hard drive space, sometime your projects are going to have to be archived to make room for new ones. How is the best way to do this? I'm not sure if I have the best way, but I think it works fairly well, so I'll share it with you.

First, I leave the projects on my hard drive as long as I can. I don't do that many a year, so I can leave them on longer than somebody that does a lot. I have a 300GB internal HD (seperate from my system disk) that serves my recording space.

Second, I will archive the entire project to DVDs. This will include the unused takes, flub ups, and the whole nine yards (including the project file). I use Roxio Toast for Mac to burn the discs, and don't do any disc spanning. (That way I won't need any special software if I need to bring the disc up on a different computer.) Burn 2 sets of discs, one to keep in the studio or some nearby storage, and one to go offsite.

You need to have something offsite, in case you have some kind of natural catastrophe, like a flood or fire.

Finally, I'll take all the papers associated with the project, like notes I made during recording and mixing, and file them away together in a manila envelope or something. I really should scan them and put them on the DVDs, but until I go to take that much time, I won't. :)

Where to get DVDs? Try cruising your local Wal-Mart, computer store, Staples, or check out Amazon's prices here.

That's pretty much how I go about archiving my stuff. Of course, that's how I SHOULD archive my stuff. Sometimes, I'm a little late, but I guess better late than never, right? :)

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