Guide to getting started making music on a budget

Guide to getting started making music with your PC or Laptop on a budget

This guide to getting started making music with your PC or Laptop on a budget includes links to software and articles on how to start up your music making project studio.
DAW = Digital Audio Workstation
VST Plugin – Virtual Studio Technology (VST) is an audio plug-in software interface that integrates software synthesizer and effects in digital audio workstations.

Guide to getting started making music with your PC or Laptop on a budget: Software required

Reaper – cheap DAW but free to use for 60 days – Download REAPER below for a free, fully functional 60-day evaluation – cost $60 : discounted license:
You may use the discounted license if:

  • You are an individual, and REAPER is only for your personal use.

MT Powerkit 2 Drums VST– Free to use and extremely awesome drum VST instrument MT Powerkit 2 – don’t forget to donate if you use regularly donate page
Guitar VST FX – List of VST Guitar FX
Winrar – Application to open downloaded archive files – we’ll need this to install MT Powerkit 2 – Run the install exe file before you begin – this program will then be able to open any archive files you download such as *.zip or *.rar files


Guide to getting started making music with your PC or Laptop on a budget – Reaper

To get started download Reaper, first you will have to choose a version for your platform – MAC or Windows and also whether to use 32bit or 64bit.
Please read the article linked below:
How to determine if your PC is 32 or 64 bit

Once you have downloaded Reaper run the exe install program and follow the prompts

Before we start installing plugins we need to make sure we have our folders for our plugins organised.
How to find the VST Folder

Install our chosen Drum Kit VST: MT Powerkit 2

(The following tutorial can be used to install any *.dll vst plugin form an archived file ie *.zip or *.rar file downloaded from the internet) – always be prudent 
When you download make sure you choose the version for you system. 64bit or 32bit?
The following tutorial is based on the 64 bit version.
Full Tutorial Click Here for Link
To install any VST Instrument or Effect from an *.exe file Click this Link

New Instrument installation and check

Now we need to find our new plugin and try it in Reaper.
Click this article – Insert Virtual Instrument on New Track

You can now install any other VST Effects, Synths and Instruments by using the above articles. If you are looking for good plugins then take a look at my other articles below.

Before you go off on a VST hunt bear this in mind.

If you are just getting started there is a lot to learn – a multitude of effects and instruments are not going to help. My advice get one or two of each and learn what each effect does, how a synth works but most of all get recording and creating. Deep dive into you creative side.

List of EQs to download and install
Article with a list of Guitar Effects, Preamps and Speaker Emulations
Free VST Instruments and Romplers
Free VST Synths


Add a Comment
  1. This quick guide to setting up a cheap DAW with drums is fantastic, and I can make some good music now. This guide is essential for a music composer like me, so I want to thank the person who shared this here.

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