I to have a home studio and also do mobile recording. When I'm just doing a small job, rather than haul the big kit (32 channel digital mixer, rack mount audio workstation, monitor
, keyboard, foldback speakers, outboard
rack yada yada yada) I use an M-Audio Omnistudio USB interface onto my laptop
This gives me 2 mic pre-amps and 2 line inputs with foldback mixing etc. in a package that goes into the laptop bag.
Quality is very good (noise floor is only a coupla dB higher than the full digital rig and well within acceptable standards). Unfortunately, the Omnistudio has been discontinued but the M-Audio MobilePre USB is also pretty good although it's only two inputs not four and doesn't have as many whistles and bells.
I've used this kit for everything from recording vocalists and instrumentalists in their own home to a 60 voice choir in a cathedral. In fact, it's my first choice gear
'cos I only haul the big stuff out on the road when I can't do the job with the stuff I can carry in two hands!
The solution to the acoustic environment
aboard aboard a yacht would be the same as always in crap acoustics - kill 'em! Virtually all professional vocals these days are recorded in vocal booths with dead acoustics (odd things to sing in, takes a bit of getting used to) and instruments can be recorded in dead environments sucessfully too. Then it's down to some careful use of post-processing to put life back into the recording
in their bags would make excellent acoustic absorbers as would foam seat cushions
etc. A forepeak or aft cabin
could be easily transformed into a recording booth for a few hours
Biggest prob, I reckon, would be acoustic interference
from external sources. Halyards tapping, noise
from other boats, waves slapping on the hull
etc. It's bad enough in the home studio (I'm currently being driven crazy by the new neighbours Dobermans who live in a kennel in the garden and bark all ****ing day from dawn 'till dusk), I dread to think of the problems afloat! The up side is that time is not gonna be too pressing. If it's too noisy today, go sailing instead and try again tomorrow!
This is good 'cos now I've got another thing I can do when we bugger off and leave the world behind! Mind you, it might not suit she who must be obeyed to have to keep quiet for hours at a time whilst I'm recording!