I haven't really done any recording in a loooong time, I'm out of the loop. Well I wasn't very far into the loop in the 1st place lol. My goal is to make my little metal songs and mix/master everything myself fairly competently. It seems like it's a good time to learn this, info is all over the net and affordable software is everywhere. I've spent some time reading and watching vids for basics and tips, and would love to be pointed to any source of info. I have Reaper, GGD Invasion for drums, most likely EZ Bass for bass since my bass and my skills suck, and Neural DSP Nolly for amp and cab sims. The big question I have is where to go with mixing and mastering plugins. Maybe the stock Reaper ones are up to the task? Or maybe some free ones worth checking out? I guess I need to figure this out before spending any more money. I've looked at some Waves stuff and am looking just now looking into iZoptope stuff. I feel a little clueless as to what is generally necessary in a loud metal mix. I thought maybe something like the Waves SSL G Master Buss Compressor could be essential. Or maybe the Scheps Omni Channel. The F6 Dynamic EQ looks good too. I will say I may be putting the horse before the cart...I may need to know a bit more about mixing and mastering first. Again, I've done some basic research, but it's not like school....I was never given a test to see if I get a passing grade or not One more thing, I wonder if it matters what computer I record with. I have a fairly new laptop with an i5-8265U, SSD, and 8gb ram. My old gaming pc has an i5-4790k @4.2ghz, SSD, and 16 gb ram. The laptop is more useful, but I wonder how much the ram difference and base clock speed difference will matter. Thanks for any input!