#1
Just bought an SM57 to mic up my AC15 to record. I've previously only used condensor mics, so I know a little about mic placement, but the SM57 has me stumped. I only really tested it facing directly to the center of the cone against the grill cloth, and I got a really muddy sound. Not too muddy, but just not great.

Any ideas? I'm dialing the amp according to my ears, not direct monitors. I'm going to try with direct monitor headphones and dial it in according to that, but apart from that, and maybe moving the mic towards the edge of the cone, I have no idea.

I'm running it into an Edirol UA25.
Quote by sashki
A lot of pros do that: if they play a wrong note, they'll hit it again to make it look as if it's intentional. It's called "jazz", aparently.
Last edited by mooshoepork at Oct 26, 2009,
#2
Quote by mooshoepork
I only really tested it facing directly to the center of the cone against the grill cloth ... I'm dialing the amp according to my ears


I'm guessing you aren't adjusting the amp with your ear pressed against the grill cloth.

Silly idea perhaps, but try adjusting the amp so it sounds good to your ears, then place the mic where your ear was while you were adjusting.
#3
Yeah, I kinda don't want to go deaf though.

It's a tube amp, and it's pretty cranked to get the sound I want. I can't put the mic where my ears usually are (a few metres away), because of course, it's an SM57.

I might give it a shot a little closer with my ears, but there has to be a better way.

Thanks for the prompt reply!
Quote by sashki
A lot of pros do that: if they play a wrong note, they'll hit it again to make it look as if it's intentional. It's called "jazz", aparently.
#4
Wait, it's on carpet! That's what's probably doing it.
Quote by sashki
A lot of pros do that: if they play a wrong note, they'll hit it again to make it look as if it's intentional. It's called "jazz", aparently.
#5
Quote by mooshoepork
Yeah, I kinda don't want to go deaf though.

It's a tube amp, and it's pretty cranked to get the sound I want. I can't put the mic where my ears usually are (a few metres away), because of course, it's an SM57.

I might give it a shot a little closer with my ears, but there has to be a better way.

Thanks for the prompt reply!


Headphones. Put the mic to the amp, and listen to it through headphones. Lot safer. And nearly just as precise.

Also, remembers, MIDS are where your tone is. Bass should be at like 2 o clock, and mids should be at like 3, highs should be at like.. 12.
#6
do you still have the condencer if so use it in conjunction with the sm57 , condencers have a flat frequency responce up to 22khz
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#7
there's some pretty egregious advice going around this thread, so, sleep-deprived as i am, i'll try to help a little bit.

first off, you really need to be more clear about what's wrong. people have different ideas as to what exactly "muddy" is -- and it's even harder when you say it's really muddy, but not too muddy, just not great. also: you say you've some experience recording before. have you tried recording this amp? what was the setup, in what room were you in, etc. if you had a good tone before, try to replicate that as best you can.

you don't need to put the mic where your ears are -- you're monitoring it all, aren't you? move the mic around until it sounds good through your monitors (be them in-ear, headphones, near- or far-field, etc.).

don't listen to powerpopguy or hans the lefty.

you actually are going to want to put your amp on a carpet when you record. you don't have to, of course, but usually when you don't you'll run into some pretty nasty phase issues. really the best advice is to just keep moving the mic. i can't stress that enough (nor can other audio engineers, professors, and the like). 9 times out of 10 something that sounds wrong is more easily fixed by moving the mic an inch, than messing around with EQs and compressors. try pulling the mic back so it's just off the grill. try an inch off, 2", 3", 6", a foot. try rotating it off-axis to varying degrees. try all of those things. try all of those things with the mic in the center of the speaker, then partway between the center and the edge of the cone, then just a bit in from the edge, then right on it. you really just have to keep trying until you find something that works for your ears -- because, as i said, i don't really know exactly what you're hearing and how you want to fix it.

ok that was way longer than i expected it to be. it's 6:20am and i just got back from the studio. sleep now.
#8
put up a clip of your recording .maybe we can help you by giving you some ideas
jackson dk2 2008
hamer xt sunburst qt
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morley p wah
behringer pb1000
dige bm
big muff ny
behringer dc 9 comp
member of the Jackson/Charvel Owners Club

£8.50/58fund for a ROCKTRON HUSH SUPER C PEDAL
#9
There are so many possible answers to this I don't want to even begin.

Just use your noggin..
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#10
just set your amps eq have way record it . if has to much of 1 freq cut it .vice versa
jackson dk2 2008
hamer xt sunburst qt
epiphone g400
peavey vk212
morley p wah
behringer pb1000
dige bm
big muff ny
behringer dc 9 comp
member of the Jackson/Charvel Owners Club

£8.50/58fund for a ROCKTRON HUSH SUPER C PEDAL
#11
Well first and foremost, don't put it in the center of the cone especially right on the grill. When I mic my blues jr with a 57 I put the mic right inside the left edge of the cone, about an inch off the grill. That should get you a much clearer sound. To be fair though, I ditched the 57 and I use a condenser in the same spot and it sounds hella better.
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#12
Quote by climhazzard
there's some pretty egregious advice going around this thread, so, sleep-deprived as i am, i'll try to help a little bit.

first off, you really need to be more clear about what's wrong. people have different ideas as to what exactly "muddy" is -- and it's even harder when you say it's really muddy, but not too muddy, just not great. also: you say you've some experience recording before. have you tried recording this amp? what was the setup, in what room were you in, etc. if you had a good tone before, try to replicate that as best you can.

you don't need to put the mic where your ears are -- you're monitoring it all, aren't you? move the mic around until it sounds good through your monitors (be them in-ear, headphones, near- or far-field, etc.).

don't listen to powerpopguy or hans the lefty.

you actually are going to want to put your amp on a carpet when you record. you don't have to, of course, but usually when you don't you'll run into some pretty nasty phase issues. really the best advice is to just keep moving the mic. i can't stress that enough (nor can other audio engineers, professors, and the like). 9 times out of 10 something that sounds wrong is more easily fixed by moving the mic an inch, than messing around with EQs and compressors. try pulling the mic back so it's just off the grill. try an inch off, 2", 3", 6", a foot. try rotating it off-axis to varying degrees. try all of those things. try all of those things with the mic in the center of the speaker, then partway between the center and the edge of the cone, then just a bit in from the edge, then right on it. you really just have to keep trying until you find something that works for your ears -- because, as i said, i don't really know exactly what you're hearing and how you want to fix it.

ok that was way longer than i expected it to be. it's 6:20am and i just got back from the studio. sleep now.


Thanks for the in depth reply.

I have never recorded this amp before with an SM57 (or any amp with an sm57 for that matter)

I recorded something today (I'll post it) I solved the muddy problem a bit, by settling on having the mic maybe, 6 inches off the grill, on the edge of the cone. The recording to me, still sounds kind of cheap though. Not sure if I could be expecting more out of it?

I couldn't get my monitoring to work. I have no idea why either. I'm new to recording electric this way. The way I did it was, record a sample, listen to it, change the placement/amp settings. Rinse, repeat, for an hour or so.

The mp3 is in my profile

Any tips? Does it sound shit?

edit: I haven't added drums or bass or backing synths yet, so the feedback parts might sound weird.
Quote by sashki
A lot of pros do that: if they play a wrong note, they'll hit it again to make it look as if it's intentional. It's called "jazz", aparently.
Last edited by mooshoepork at Oct 26, 2009,
#14
Thanks man. Not sure if I should be expecting more or not.
Quote by sashki
A lot of pros do that: if they play a wrong note, they'll hit it again to make it look as if it's intentional. It's called "jazz", aparently.
#15
Quote by hans the lefty
do you still have the condencer if so use it in conjunction with the sm57 , condencers have a flat frequency responce up to 22khz


1) The correct spelling is "condenser"
2) Condenser microphones as a whole do not have a flat frequency response. Take a look at some microphone frequency response graphs. I also don't believe I've even seen a frequency response graph that goes above 20KHz. Most of us can't even hear frequencies that high anyways.
Last edited by take_it_t at Oct 28, 2009,
#16
Yeah, the condenser just got fuzzy... Maybe if I move it back. Anyone else care to have a listen?
Quote by sashki
A lot of pros do that: if they play a wrong note, they'll hit it again to make it look as if it's intentional. It's called "jazz", aparently.
#17
Hey, I'm by no means an expert so feel free to discount my advice entirely...but I always found that I got the best tone with the mic about an inch or so off, sometimes closer pointing at the edge of the dust cap, but I play a totally different genre (metal mainly) so that might have something to do with it...

Also, did you double track? In my experience double tracking does wonders for any guitar tone!

In conclusion, try moving the mic closer, edge of dust cap and double track!

Also, your decode cover sounds pretty awesome! I like it!
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Acoustics: Maton EM225C, Washburn WD-42S, Ovation Tangent

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Cab: Framus FR212
#18
thanks mate, I just copied over the tracks. I didn't record them twice, but they are doubled. An inch for me was a bit too close, was a bit fuzzy/dull.

Thanks :P everyone loves the decode cover. This is really the first time I've recorded electric. Usually I just do acoustic stuff.
Quote by sashki
A lot of pros do that: if they play a wrong note, they'll hit it again to make it look as if it's intentional. It's called "jazz", aparently.
#19
Quote by mooshoepork
thanks mate, I just copied over the tracks. I didn't record them twice, but they are doubled. An inch for me was a bit too close, was a bit fuzzy/dull.

Thanks :P everyone loves the decode cover. This is really the first time I've recorded electric. Usually I just do acoustic stuff.


Well you've nailed the acoustic stuff! Do you mic it up or direct into the mixer with an electro acoustic? If you mic it, how do you do it? I don't really know what I'm doing when it comes to micing acoustics...I normally just point one condenser at about the 14th fret (where the neck joins the body)

Oh, and just copying the tracks isn't double tracking...I thought that once, you have to record the track twice then pan left and right to get the desired effect.

For a demo listen to my clip here: http://dl.getdropbox.com/u/2298596/Double%20Track%20Demo.mp3 (Excuse my playing )

First are the two tracks panned left and right played seperately...then together to hear the difference....Hopefully you will hear that it sounds a lot fuller and just better in general!

If you can't hear the difference then go here https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1176864&highlight=tone+testing and listen to Mark G's clips under the panning heading, he's a lot better than I am and demonstrates the effect of double tracking well
Guitars: PRS Custom 24, PRS EG3, PRS Santana SE, PRS Tremonti SE, ESP-LTD M-200FM

Acoustics: Maton EM225C, Washburn WD-42S, Ovation Tangent

Amps: Peavey 5150 Mk 1, Randall V2, Marshall JCM2000 DSL100

Cab: Framus FR212
#20
Quote by idiotbox919
Well you've nailed the acoustic stuff! Do you mic it up or direct into the mixer with an electro acoustic? If you mic it, how do you do it? I don't really know what I'm doing when it comes to micing acoustics...I normally just point one condenser at about the 14th fret (where the neck joins the body)

Oh, and just copying the tracks isn't double tracking...I thought that once, you have to record the track twice then pan left and right to get the desired effect.

For a demo listen to my clip here: http://dl.getdropbox.com/u/2298596/Double%20Track%20Demo.mp3 (Excuse my playing )

First are the two tracks panned left and right played seperately...then together to hear the difference....Hopefully you will hear that it sounds a lot fuller and just better in general!

If you can't hear the difference then go here https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1176864&highlight=tone+testing and listen to Mark G's clips under the panning heading, he's a lot better than I am and demonstrates the effect of double tracking well


Thanks for the explanation of double tracking. I'll try it.

For the acoustic stuff I use an MXL 990 at the bridge and an mxl 991 about 6 inches off from the 12th fret.
Quote by sashki
A lot of pros do that: if they play a wrong note, they'll hit it again to make it look as if it's intentional. It's called "jazz", aparently.
#21
Quote by mooshoepork
Thanks for the explanation of double tracking. I'll try it.

For the acoustic stuff I use an MXL 990 at the bridge and an mxl 991 about 6 inches off from the 12th fret.


You're welcome!

And thanks for the acoustic tip...I'll give it a go next time I'm doing any acoustic work
Guitars: PRS Custom 24, PRS EG3, PRS Santana SE, PRS Tremonti SE, ESP-LTD M-200FM

Acoustics: Maton EM225C, Washburn WD-42S, Ovation Tangent

Amps: Peavey 5150 Mk 1, Randall V2, Marshall JCM2000 DSL100

Cab: Framus FR212
#22
no problem


Anyone here tried an SM57 with another mic? Works pretty well if I put a condenser really far back...

Will two sm57's sound better? anyone with examples of both?
Quote by sashki
A lot of pros do that: if they play a wrong note, they'll hit it again to make it look as if it's intentional. It's called "jazz", aparently.
#24
this is probably a stupid thing to ask but you do realise that what your mic receives directly infront of the speaker is going to sound different to what you hear a few feet back and a few feet above it?

the recording sounds pretty good to me so its probably more a case of you not getting what you were expecting. i.e. you're expecting to hear what it sounds like about 10 feet away and 30 degrees off axis.

try eqing the amp with it pointing at you, like either head heightl or pointing up at you, then see if it sounds so much different through the mic as it does live.