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Dear School of Music Students:

We are very excited to begin working with you again in a few short weeks! For many of you, this will involve a return to campus, while others will choose to work exclusively online. In all cases, however, some online instruction will be part of the equation, and with that will come some modest technology needs.

Specifically, students will need access to the following:

  • A computer (preferably) or tablet, equipped with a webcam (all students need this).

  • A good microphone (for students taking lessons). Some recommendations are below, and we have a limited number of USB microphones available for semester loan (more on this below).

  • A piano keyboard of some kind (for students taking Theory 101/201, Musicianship 107/108/207, or Group Piano 172/174—this includes all freshmen and sophomores). This can be anything from an actual piano to an inexpensive, 4-5 octave digital keyboard, to a higher-end weighted 88-key digital piano. Some recommendations are below, and we will have a limited number of 61-key Casio Casiotone CTS-300 keyboards available for semester loan (more on this below).

  • A folding music stand (for in-person lessons and ensemble rehearsals). Some recommendations are below. While the School does, of course, own lots of stands, we are avoiding using them so as to limit the sharing of equipment between students.

In the cases of the microphone and the keyboard, we do encourage you to have your own of each of these, if it is within your means to purchase them. But as noted above, we have bought a limited number of modest USB microphones and digital keyboards that can be borrowed for the semester on a first-come-first-served basis from the Properties Office (Music Building Room 0330, in the basement).

If you have any questions about these recommendations, please contact Nathan Mandel (nmandel2@illinois.edu).

We look forward to seeing you soon!

All the best,
Dr. Jeffrey Sposato
Professor and Director

 

Equipment Recommendations

Note that these models are just a few of the possibilities out there—feel free to make your own choices regarding what best meets your needs and budget. Likewise, the links to vendors are just to give you a sense of the items recommended and their price—they are not endorsements of particular vendors. We encourage you to compare models for what will work best for you, and to compare prices at different vendors. In short, you may purchase whatever you want, wherever you want!

 

Microphones: USB “Plug and Play” models for laptop and desktop computers

Fifine USB microphone ($35-45)
https://www.amazon.com/Microphone-Condenser-Recording-Streaming-669B/dp/B06XCKGLTP/ref=sr_1_6?crid=Y36UDTYI5HVT&dchild=1&keywords=fifine+usb+microphone&qid=1592333417&sprefix=fifine+%2Caps%2C170&sr=8-6

Blue Snowball ($50.00)
https://www.amazon.com/Blue-Snowball-Condenser-Microphone-Cardioid/dp/B014PYGTUQ/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=blue+snowball&qid=1592333486&s=musical-instruments&sr=1-1

Blue Yeti Nano Condenser Microphone ($99.00)
https://www.bluemic.com/en-us/products/yeti-nano/

Blue Yeti Condenser Microphone ($129.00)
https://www.bluemic.com/en-us/products/yeti/

Rode NT-USB ($100)
https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/NTUSBMini--rode-nt-usb-mini-usb-condenser-microphone

Audio Technica AT2020 USB ($170)
https://www.amazon.com/Audio-Technica-AT2020USB-Cardioid-Condenser-Microphone/dp/B00B5ZX9FM/ref=sr_1_2?dchild=1&keywords=Audio-technica+AT2020USB&qid=1592335446&sr=8-2

 

Microphones: Lightning connector, for iPhone and iPad

Rode VideoMic Me-L ($79)
https://www.apple.com/shop/product/HMG72ZM/A/r%C3%B8de-microphones-videomic-me-l-microphone?afid=p238%7Cs49EWZKob-dc_mtid_1870765e38482_pcrid_407287611250_pgrid_86826619883_&cid=aos-us-kwgo-pla-btb-catchall--slid---product-HMG72ZM/A

Zoom IQ6 ($100)
https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/iQ6--zoom-iq6-stereo-mic-for-ios-with-lightning

Sure MV88+ ($250; also supports USB)
https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/MV88P--shure-mv88-video-kit

 

Digital Piano/Keyboards (must have four octaves at the minimum)

61-key Casio Casiotone CTS-200 ($119.00)
https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/CTS200BK--casio-casiotone-ct-s200-black

61-key Casio Casiotone CTS-300 ($149.00)
https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/CTS300--casio-casiotone-ct-s300

88-key Yamaha P-125 ($649.00)
https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/P125BK--yamaha-p-125-88-key-weighted-action-digital-piano-black

 

Folding Music Stands (research to find the best for your needs):

Music Shoppe Basic Wire Stand ($12.00)
https://www.themusicshoppe.com/shop/the-music-shoppe-music-stand

K&M Classic Music Stand ($22.00)
https://www.wwbw.com/KM-Classic-Music-Stand-450390.wwbw?rNtt=music%20stand&index=47

Hercules BS100B Compact Music Stand ($41.00)
https://www.wwbw.com/Hercules-Stands-BS100B-Compact-Music-Stand-453090-453090000000000.wwbw?rNtt=music%20stand&index=50

Portasound Troubadour Music Stand ($65.00)
https://www.wwbw.com/Portastand-Troubadour-Music-Stand-J29313.wwbw