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Old 03-13-2013, 09:36 PM   #1
Megalomaniac_
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Help with recording electric guitar and tone.

I would think this would be really easy to find but I'm having trouble getting a step by step setup of what I need to record a high quality guitar. So please, anyone out there who knows what they're talking about, baby talk me.

What I have: Guitar, Cable, Audio Interface, Reference Monitors, Garageband.

Lately I haven't done much recording but I mainly play my guitar through Garageband and use the virtual amps and pedals. (quality doesn't sound great, recording sound shit) I'm starting to think that I need a $1000 amp and a dynamic microphone to actually record something bearable to listen to. I am on a low budget and currently only have a small Squire amp that is pretty useless. I have no pedals. I'm not trying to record a whole lot of music or anything, maybe some covers for fun, I just want a really good sound, something to be able to record, and good quality for the price. So, what equipment do I need!?

If you would like to include some tone tips or necessary pedals I mainly play Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd.

Thanks for all of your help!
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Old 03-13-2013, 10:03 PM   #2
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Using an amp and microphone will be a lot more hassle and isn't really worth it if you're on a tight budget and don't already have the equipment. I've never used garage band personally so I don't know what the quality of the amp models is like but there are a lot of free plugins out there that will sound much better than a poorly recorded amplifier.

If you're set on recording an amp you'll want to get a low wattage tube amplifier Vox AC15, Fender Blues Jr., etc so you can get it to break up at low volumes. Which amp depends on which sound you prefer. As far as microphones go you cant go wrong with a Shure SM57 which brand new will be around $100. If your interface doesn't have a mic pre amp built in then you'll need one of them too or there won't be enough signal coming from the microphone.
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Old 03-13-2013, 10:26 PM   #3
Megalomaniac_
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Thanks for the response!

The reason for me not getting a good quality sound out of garageband could just be because I don't know what I'm doing but I'm pretty certain it's just not meant for recording a good quality guitar. What do you use to record? Any software recommendations? (free)

I'm not set on recording from an amp but I think I need a better one anyway. And from what I've read everywhere else you're right about the SM57. And I have the Scarlett 2i4 and it has a pre amp so I'm good there. I also have a MXL V67 condenser. I was looking towards a Marshall amp. I really wanted a half stack but I think that might be unnecessary and definitely too expensive. Any other recommendations on amps?

Thanks for your help.
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Old 03-13-2013, 10:37 PM   #4
jetwash69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Megalomaniac_
Thanks for the response!

The reason for me not getting a good quality sound out of garageband could just be because I don't know what I'm doing but I'm pretty certain it's just not meant for recording a good quality guitar. What do you use to record? Any software recommendations? (free)

I'm not set on recording from an amp but I think I need a better one anyway. And from what I've read everywhere else you're right about the SM57. And I have the Scarlett 2i4 and it has a pre amp so I'm good there. I also have a MXL V67 condenser. I was looking towards a Marshall amp. I really wanted a half stack but I think that might be unnecessary and definitely too expensive. Any other recommendations on amps?

Thanks for your help.


You're right about good Marshall halfstacks being expensive (~$1,000 for a good deal used). And the cheap ones like MGs really suck (worse than your Garageband rig).

I'm not sure you need another DAW. Reaper is great (but not really free), and I don't know enough about Garageband to know if Reaper's better. You can probably use Garageband for free amp sims like Poulin or others. Try Googling those if nobody posts better help here. If you're still stuck, then use the Search bar to hunt for threads/posts on amp sims. Everything you need to know is already posted all over UG threads.

If you don't have pedals, then the kinds of amps guys are telling you about here might not get better results than a good amp sim.
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Old 03-13-2013, 10:42 PM   #5
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Don't use garageband. It's fun to fool around with, but it's not a decent quality DAW at all. Install Reaper ( it's the cheapest good quality DAW around; if you can't pay the $60 for a license now, save it up) for Mac. Then, visit the amp sim and cab sim thread to download some stuff.

Minimum you will need:
Reaper
1 Amp Sim
1 Cab Sim
Cab Impulses Response (aka "IRs"; these load into your cab sim)

Recommended:
Pick an amp sim (there's a few in the amp sim/cab sim thread with a british tone that may be up your ally)
leCab2 (cab sim)
Pick any of the IRs in the amp sim/cab sim thread
Samplicity room IRs (for your drum room track)
keFIR (to load your drum room IR)
http://www.drumsamples.org/ (a mega-pack of drum sounds)
Read this, so you know how to create drum tracks
Watch some Recording Revolution videos (You can just search Recording Revolution on youtube and something like "guitar EQ'ing" or "drum EQ'ing".)


That'll get you going well.
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Old 03-13-2013, 10:43 PM   #6
Megalomaniac_
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@jetwash69

Good info! Thanks for warning me about the MGs. So if you don't use GB than what do you use? Also, I'll google this to figure it out but I had no idea you could input amp sims into GB.

Last edited by Megalomaniac_ : 03-13-2013 at 10:53 PM.
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Old 03-13-2013, 10:53 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Megalomaniac_
Good info! Thanks for warning me about the MGs. So if you don't use GB than what do you use? Also, I'll google this to figure it out but I had no idea you could input amp sims into GB.


Reaper is the name of the better DAW. Sam has more good info about it in his post above--maybe he ninja'd you...
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Old 03-13-2013, 10:55 PM   #8
Megalomaniac_
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazysam23_Atax
Don't use garageband. It's fun to fool around with, but it's not a decent quality DAW at all. Install Reaper ( it's the cheapest good quality DAW around; if you can't pay the $60 for a license now, save it up) for Mac. Then, visit the amp sim and cab sim thread to download some stuff.

Minimum you will need:
Reaper
1 Amp Sim
1 Cab Sim
Cab Impulses Response (aka "IRs"; these load into your cab sim)

Recommended:
Pick an amp sim (there's a few in the amp sim/cab sim thread with a british tone that may be up your ally)
leCab2 (cab sim)
Pick any of the IRs in the amp sim/cab sim thread
Samplicity room IRs (for your drum room track)
keFIR (to load your drum room IR)
http://www.drumsamples.org/ (a mega-pack of drum sounds)
Read this, so you know how to create drum tracks
Watch some Recording Revolution videos (You can just search Recording Revolution on youtube and something like "guitar EQ'ing" or "drum EQ'ing".)


That'll get you going well.



Exactly what I was looking for! I will definitely check out Reaper and use this site for more than just tabs! (honestly, I've been using this site for close to a year and just recently discovered forums haha) Guitar EQ'ing will definitely help me and answer a lot of my questions. Thanks!
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Old 03-13-2013, 11:02 PM   #9
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What I used is a Avid Eleven Rack which comes with Pro Tools 10 it's got a ton of effects and different amp models and you can plug it into your monitors and used it as an amp. Here is a list of its presets.
http://www.elevenrackpresets.com/El...pswithpics1.pdf
It'll be about $700 new.
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Old 03-13-2013, 11:30 PM   #10
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Saw your edit.

I use Reaper, and mic a tube Marshall halfstack I got a great deal on. I've played around with the free amp sims, but not enough to be comfortable with them yet. I haven't recorded all that much really; I mainly use the halfstack when playing large shows. I.e., I don't use it much.
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Last edited by jetwash69 : 03-13-2013 at 11:40 PM.
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Old 03-14-2013, 12:19 AM   #11
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I use the Line6 ux2 and pod farm for guitar tones. You say you already have a interface so maybe pod farm is all you'd need, I run this in front of ableton and I get very good guitar tones. also very versatile, with many different amps, cabs, mics, and effects. I am not sure of the stand alone price of pod farm, but it has to be less than a live rig that then needs to be recorded and has a limited amount of sounds verses pod farm.
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Old 03-14-2013, 12:20 AM   #12
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reapers fantastic if you google poulin, they make a bunch of amazing free amp sims. they also make a plug in called lecab that you can load your cabinet impulse responses too and you can blend them together. great stuff especially on a budget
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Old 03-14-2013, 12:33 AM   #13
Megalomaniac_
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Thanks guys! I'll definitely look into all of this.
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Old 03-14-2013, 12:53 AM   #14
crazysam23_Atax
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver77
I use the Line6 ux2 and pod farm for guitar tones. You say you already have a interface so maybe pod farm is all you'd need, I run this in front of ableton and I get very good guitar tones. also very versatile, with many different amps, cabs, mics, and effects. I am not sure of the stand alone price of pod farm, but it has to be less than a live rig that then needs to be recorded and has a limited amount of sounds verses pod farm.

Pod farm is horrible...

In the words of the interface thread's own ChemicalFire it's "a below average amp sim". Don't even bother with pod farm.
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Last edited by crazysam23_Atax : 03-14-2013 at 12:56 AM.
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Old 03-14-2013, 12:05 PM   #15
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I would definitely give consideration to recording digitally as oppose to a mic with an amp. It's a very nice luxury to be able to change your sound after recording and also to be able to get the same sounds again at a later date - something that's very difficult with an amp and mic. You could try Waves GTR3 plug in.
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Old 03-14-2013, 12:13 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by StuartBahn
I would definitely give consideration to recording digitally as oppose to a mic with an amp. It's a very nice luxury to be able to change your sound after recording and also to be able to get the same sounds again at a later date - something that's very difficult with an amp and mic. You could try Waves GTR3 plug in.


Well, if you have a DI Box with a bypass and a multi-input interface, then it's not hard at all. Just use the bypass to send the signal to the real amp and the DI to send the signal to one of the channels on the interface. Mic for the amp goes to another channel on the interface, of course. If you record both on the computer, one will be amped and the other totally dry.

You can use the dry track to re-amp digitally or to physically re-amp if you have a re-amp box or one of the many passive DI Boxes or MFX pedals that can do it.

It's even simpler in practice than it sounds here.
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Old 03-19-2013, 05:13 AM   #17
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Very interesting, this isn't something I've done; thank you for the advice ... though you still can't do it a 2am :-)
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