How to record vocals in cubase 5

Cubase 5 is an audio sequencing and recording software program from Steinberg. As of January 2011, it is the second-most recent version of Cubase, after Cubase 6. Cubase 5 lets you record, edit, mix and master music at home using your computer. This enables you to eliminate the cost of renting a recording studio and lets you work at your own pace, without clock-watching. This means you can take time to get important aspects of your music, such as vocal recording, absolutely right.

Connect an audio interface to your computer. The type of connection varies according to the make and model of the interface, but is typically a USB or FireWire connection. The audio interface converts audio signals into data, which it then transfers to Cubase 5.

Connect the female end of an XLR cable to the bottom of a microphone. Connect the other end of the XLR cable to the "XLR Input" on the front of your audio interface.

Connect a pair of headphones to the "Headphones" jack on the rear of your audio interface. Use a quarter-inch jack adaptor if the headphones don't already have a quarter-inch jack plug.

Open Cubase 5.

Click "File" and select "New Audio Track." This opens up a new channel on the Cubase 5 interface. Double-click "Audio 1" box and type in "Vocal 1."

Audition the levels. Sing into the microphone at the peak volume you intend to record at. Observe the Cubase 5 meter section. If the red warning light comes on, the signal is too powerful and will cause distortion. Turn down the "Gain" dial on the audio interface.

Set a tempo. Cubase 5 has a click-track tool. The click-track provides a digital time-reference. If you slip out of time when recording, you'll hear it when using a click. The default tempo for a click-track in Cubase 5 is 120 beats per minute, or BPM. Click the "Metronome" icon and press "Play." As the click-track rolls, sing along. If the click is not the right speed, adjust it up or down by 10 BPM by changing the number in the "Tempo" box. Once you get near your preferred tempo, adjust it by a single beat.

Put on the headphones. Press "Play" and test the level of your voice against the level of the click. If the click is too loud, turn down the "Monitor" dial on the front of your audio interface.

Hit "Record" as soon as you're ready to do a take.


Once you've recorded a good take, click "Effects" and select "Reverb." This approximates the sound of an acoustically resonant environment, such as a church or cave.

Things You'll Need

  • Audio interface
  • USB or FireWire cable
  • XLR cable
  • Microphone
  • Headphones
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About the Author

Simon Foden has been a freelance writer and editor since 1999. He began his writing career after graduating with a Bachelors of Arts degree in music from Salford University. He has contributed to and written for various magazines including "K9 Magazine" and "Pet Friendly Magazine." He has also written for