I can record accurate nice clean tones, I cannot get an OD tone to save my life....

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by michael.e, Jan 20, 2008.

  1. michael.e

    michael.e Supporting Member

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    WHY!!
    GAAAHHH!


    Okay, so I am going direct in to my puper from my minidisc acting as a preamp. The cleans that I am recording are pretty accurate to what I am hearing in the room..
    http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=519252
    [go to "clean test suite"]

    I have tried mic placement, minimal OD, tone control at zero, tone control at 11, volume cranked and gain backed off, gain cranked and volume backed off. Just about every concievable scenario.
    Do I need a good preamp in order to capture good OD tones?

    What do I do??

    I have tried a:
    57
    Audix D3
    58
    Room mic's


    Close

    Far


    round the outside........


    LOUD:BITCH






    soft...:crazyguy



    Ahh!!!
     
  2. Bryan T

    Bryan T Guitar Owner Silver Supporting Member

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    What don't you like about the OD sound when recorded?

    Where is the microphone pointed? Any angle to it?

    Do you know anyone with a Royer 121 that you could borrow?

    Bryan
     
  3. michael.e

    michael.e Supporting Member

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    Well, it is either too brittle or shrill or goopy.

    I have tried angles, front, back, top..

    It is never what I am hearing in the room. I understand that my ear and it's placement etc.. I can capture what I am hearing in the cleans, but not the OD and especially solo tones.
    Would a nice condenser mic help to fatten and keep harsh spikes at bay?

    I never understood the ole point the 57 at the cone thing. What a screechy sound.

    But then, what do I know.

    Thanks,
    Emee
     
  4. 52ftbuddha

    52ftbuddha Member

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    Well I gave it a listen and it was tough because the guitar is so far in the back. I have found that I can do almost anything with a 57 and it does not seem to care, the axis will change the frequency response but you can do the same with the eq on the amp or in the mix. I hate room mic's unless you have a 15th century castle to record it in. I think for the rest of us no room is just better add ambience later. Forget what you hear in the room and monitor with headphones, ideally put the amp in a closet or something so you can isolate yourself. Now I am taking it that you are not doing this with a full band running. What is your setup with the MiniDisc? I am not sure I understand your setup, but it really does not require much of a preamp certainly nothing special to get good guitar. A Mackie 1202 will do you.

    rob

    Oh and try a bit of tape on the baffle to diffuse the energy before the mic
     
  5. Greggy

    Greggy Member

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    No, you are right. Whenever I read of someone recommending this mic position, I immediately ignore that person's opinions. May sound narrow minded, but I've positioned an SM57 enough to know better. Angle the 57 between 30 to 45 degrees or so, pointing about halfway up the speaker cone between the dust cap and rim. Try to place the mic so that a line emanating from the speaker center perpindicular to the grille cloth intersects the middle of the mic capsule, but the mic is angled per above. Getting a good gainy guitar tone was the hardest thing I had to learn. In my case, the problem was that I did not understand how to eq my amps for recording purposes. I had to turn down the treble and boost the mid and bass controls. In addition to angling the mic. Also, are you using 2 mics at the same time? If so, this often introduces phase issues. Try one mic at a time and record multiple takes/performances and blend them in the mix. I generally avoid multiple mics on high gain tracks.
     
  6. Bryan T

    Bryan T Guitar Owner Silver Supporting Member

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    See if you can track down a Royer to borrow. In my experience, it captures what I'm hearing in the room.

    Not in my experience. It will reveal the harsh spikes better than other microphones.

    Not my favorite sound either. I've heard plenty of stories about how a good engineer could make a killer album with a roll of Scotch tape and an SM57, but that microphone just has too much character in the midrange for my ears.

    Bryan
     
  7. michael.e

    michael.e Supporting Member

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    Great info guys, I really appreciate it.

    In the "clean suite", I am using my Minidisc stereo mic right off the cone and about 3" away from the grille. That is going to my minidisc for some volume control, then to the computer where I am recording in Audacity. Then I save as MP3 then to soundclick. I have an Akai Headrush giving me some echo in the loop of the amp. No other effects outboard, just straiht to the puper.
    I am not in my studio with my other mic's actually, I put the Goodsell in our office and I am recording here as the computer is here. I don't want to lug the stuff to the studio just yet. Regardless where I record, I can never capture a lead tone that I am happy with. Except at rehearsals with my old band, where I took the same minidisc and mic and threw it in the middle of the room. But then, that was for old school punk...:D

    I will work on the suggestions tomorrow.​

    Emee​
     
  8. Bryan T

    Bryan T Guitar Owner Silver Supporting Member

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    It probably depends on the amp and the room. With a small combo, I'll get the amp up off the floor and out from a wall. I'll put the Royer about a foot away from the cab, starting with it pointing at the the speaker. Often, I'll end up moving the Royer up a bit higher than the speaker and I'll tweak where it is pointing. This approach works well for a small room or vocal booth.

    splatt did a nice write-up about how he uses a pair of Royer's for his room sound. Have a read through this thread: http://www.thegearpage.net/board/showthread.php?t=314266

    Bryan
     
  9. Kenny D

    Kenny D Member

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    Great thread!

    I, too, am having difficulty getting a nice hi-gain recorded tone. I can do it but it requires a room mic. The close mic just does not get that tone. My room offers a little too much natural reverb, however, so it's a give and take kinda thing.

    Has anyone ever mic'ed up two amps at once for a bigger stereo picture? Or is the basic rule to just use one or two mics on one cab?
     
  10. GuitarsFromMars

    GuitarsFromMars Member

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    I get a superb OD sound from the stuff I'm using.Shoot an email if you need some assistance,emee.
     
  11. Kenny D

    Kenny D Member

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    Your email feature is disabled.

    I am interested in any help I can get!
     
  12. Shiny McShine

    Shiny McShine Member

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    Important lesson in recording follows--
    1. Pick your favorite solo--Eruption, Clapton, Hendrix, Zep, etc.
    2. Load it in any garden variety boom box.
    3. Put an SM 57 or a large condenser mic in the same room and run it to your console.
    4. Crank it to as close to amp levels as practical.
    5. Push the record button.
    6. Play it back.
    Does it sound awesome? If so, now you know an important truth--the sound has to be there in the first place. It's not the recorder that creates it. If it sucks, then you now know that you need improved recording chops.

    Most of the sound of a band/artist is in their playing ability. Numerous threads on this board have examined the tone-is-in-the-hands subject ad-nauseum. It's remarkably easy to make a good recording of a really great band. They all play well together and the project practically mixes itself. Overplayers get really bad mixes and are notorious for thinking it can be fixed in post-production.

    Rant over.
     
  13. vchizzle

    vchizzle Supporting Member

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    I've had pretty accurate room sounds recently using a 57 at the edge of the cone and a cheap large condenser 3-6" off the grill(be careful getting levels that close though).

    There's an MXL/M-Audio package that's worth the money for a budget home recording setup:
    http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/MAudio-MXL-990991-and-Audio-Buddy-Package?sku=703626

    To me the large condenser brought alot to the table that wasn't there with only the 57. It brought the room feeling, even though it was close miced. I'll try and do some clips this week and post a link.
     
  14. JohnSS

    JohnSS Member

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    I've had pretty good results combining an SM57 off axis at about 2" away from speaker and a PZM taped to a board or steel shelf about 12-18" back through a stereo compressor. There are no phase problems when using a PZM, so you can adjust at any angle/distance configuration by ear without worrying about phase coherence. It also helps to use a small amp cranked as opposed to a larger one w/headroom to spare if you want OD tones.
     
  15. Greggy

    Greggy Member

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    Maybe no phase issues when the pzm is used by itself, that's because the reflections off the boundary (board) will be delayed relative to the direct sound wave by a minimal amount of time, due to the proximitiy of the board to the mic capsule. But you can still have phase issues vis a vis the SM57, right?
     
  16. rob2001

    rob2001 Member

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    I know this will sound backwards but try using less gain (distortion) in the amp or pedals. When I record songs that I want high gain it usually requires far less gain than I used when writing the song. And as mentioned, doubling the takes adds to percieved dirt and really adds fatness. I'd also give an Audix I-5 mic a try. Compared to a 57, it seems to take out what I don't like about the 57. They can be a bit shrill depending on the source. Yes the 57 has recorded a million great high gain tones but with the help of high end preamps, gear and pro engineers.

    To sumarize my thoughts, use less gain than you think you need, try an Audix I-5, and i'll add to forget about capturing what you hear in the room and work from the perspective of your gear... meaning tweek with headphones or listen thru the monitors.
     
  17. BluesForDan

    BluesForDan Member

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    well, not sure what to tell you. I will say that the AE (audio engineer) forum I hang at, has an entire sub-forum, just for recording distorted guitar. And their opinions are as varied as can be.

    Distorted guitars are the devil to record, so at least you can take comfort in that even the pros have the deuce of a time trying to do what you are attempting.

    A lot boils down to mic placement, and turn the gain down a bit. And to think about your final product. As one guy put it, "Why try to record the entirety of the guitar's room sound, if you're going to have to cut and slash it anyway to make it fit in the mix?"
     
  18. Kenny D

    Kenny D Member

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    What audio engineering forum are you talking about? I would like to read about the guitar mic'ing there.
     
  19. Kenny D

    Kenny D Member

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    I just bought a pair of Audix I5 mics and cannot wait to try them. They are supposed to be great on snare drums as well.
     
  20. rob2001

    rob2001 Member

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    I tried it on a snare and prefered a 57. Still pretty good but IMO, the I-5 doesn't have the upper mid spike 57's seem to have. But that spike works well on my drummers snare. The 57 brings out some sizzle, which I don't want in my guitar tracks. You may love it on a different snare though. At any rate it's a great mic for the money and i'm diggin it on guitars for sure.
     

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