#1
Hi all,
I'm complete noob when it comes to recording. I recently bought a new Macbook Pro with Apple logic, and will be recording guitar through a Shure SM57 in front of my Mark V combo. When I play though, particularly heavy stuff, there is still certainly some excess string noise from time to time and it got me wondering....how do band's record heavy riffs that are so absolutely flawless and clean from excess noise?

I like As I lay Dying, Children of Bodom, Asking Alexandria (I know I know), Killswitch, etc....Their heavy 2 string riffs and open string riffs on their albums are absolutely flawless. How do you record stuff that heavy with so little noise? Is it all playing style? Is it gear tricks? Do they filter their recordings to remove all of the excess noise?

One thing I'm quickly learning, it doesnt take a lot of gain to record heavy. I use way more gain with normal live playing through the Mark V, but the sacrifice is string noise. I use an ISP which helps, but I have to lower the gain quite a bit to record with little noise.

What are the tricks? (Gear, techhnique, whatever they may be?). Thanks
#2
Record mono, one for the left side, once for the right, then to make it sound heavier you record everything more than once, so you would record maybe twice to play out of the right side, and twice to play out of the left side. Pretty much stacking it, it does make it sound more heavier, and adds punch to the tone.
#3
Quote by Deaderzombie
Record mono, one for the left side, once for the right, then to make it sound heavier you record everything more than once, so you would record maybe twice to play out of the right side, and twice to play out of the left side. Pretty much stacking it, it does make it sound more heavier, and adds punch to the tone.


I assume when doing this, I should keep the gain way down to keep it noise free? Then by stacking them it "heavies" the tone back up? I will definitely try what you are suggesting. Is that the only trick?
#4
What mic pre are you using? That's the one part that most people starting to record neglect, and it's one of the most important parts.

Also, when you listen to an albums guitar tones, a lot has been done to them in mixing and mastering.
#5
Quote by GuitarDTO
I assume when doing this, I should keep the gain way down to keep it noise free? Then by stacking them it "heavies" the tone back up? I will definitely try what you are suggesting. Is that the only trick?


Keep it as high as you can without getting noise, maybe put in a noise gate. Stacking will help make it heavier the more times you stack it. Not sure on other ways except for the preamp as the other guy mentioned.
#6
Double tracking.

Record the amp once with low gain, and then record it again. Pan the first track to the left side, pan the second to the right, or switch them around or do a mix of both (i.e. first track panned to the left 50% and second panned to the right 25%, whatever sounds best for you). To do this right you're going to need a click track or a drum beat, or something to keep you in time, though.
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#7
Quote by rokket2005
What mic pre are you using? That's the one part that most people starting to record neglect, and it's one of the most important parts.

Also, when you listen to an albums guitar tones, a lot has been done to them in mixing and mastering.

I don't know what you are talking about, so that's probably not a good sign! Are you talking about my microphone interface? I have an Apogee One that I send the mic into, which then goes into my computer. The Apogee also has a 1/4" input, but in my case I will only be sending the mic into it (I don't have the microphone yet, it's on order).
#8
Quote by Raijouta
Double tracking.

Record the amp once with low gain, and then record it again. Pan the first track to the left side, pan the second to the right, or switch them around or do a mix of both (i.e. first track panned to the left 50% and second panned to the right 25%, whatever sounds best for you). To do this right you're going to need a click track or a drum beat, or something to keep you in time, though.


Will the effect be the same if you use a copy of just 1 recording and layer it? Or does it have to be 2 separate recordings?
#9
Quote by GuitarDTO
Will the effect be the same if you use a copy of just 1 recording and layer it? Or does it have to be 2 separate recordings?


No, it should be 2. You can use one if you move them a couple milliseconds apart but it's not as thick then. When you record two, the minute changes you inadvertently make help make the mix thicker.

Also, on the clean comment, bands make super heavy stuff while being clean through a lot of practice, use of a metronome, a mute sometimes (hairband, tape, etc.) and lots of editing.
#10
Found this, he's using the same interface I have and same mic I have on order. Looks like he does just what all of you are saying....records one in mono panned left, then repeats panned right. Thanks for the tips....Can't wait to start trying this out for myself.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oDmGmMAe6Qc
#11
nm. saw it above.

the apogee one is deece.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
Last edited by AcousticMirror at Mar 23, 2011,
#12
The Apogee One is a great interface, and coupled with an SM57 and Logic you will have a very nice setup going. As mentioned dual/quad tracking is important and practically 99% of all modern heavy recordings will be tracked this way. Gain is cumulitive so less is sometimes more, and try and raise the gain (volume) on the mic in on your interface as SM57's need a fair bit of gain. Also crank your Mark, get that thing roaring. Using the 100% left 100% Right panning with 2 tracts is a great way to get a nice thick rhythm tone. I find leads should be closer to centered but it's all preference really.
#13
Quote by AxSilentxLine
The Apogee One is a great interface, and coupled with an SM57 and Logic you will have a very nice setup going. As mentioned dual/quad tracking is important and practically 99% of all modern heavy recordings will be tracked this way. Gain is cumulitive so less is sometimes more, and try and raise the gain (volume) on the mic in on your interface as SM57's need a fair bit of gain. Also crank your Mark, get that thing roaring. Using the 100% left 100% Right panning with 2 tracts is a great way to get a nice thick rhythm tone. I find leads should be closer to centered but it's all preference really.


Thanks for the pointers! Right now my favorite tone from my Mark is actually set in 10W mode and not that cranked, but I'll have to see how that records. Unfortunately I'm in a townhouse so cranking where I'll be recording 99% of the time isnt going to be an option. I'm not too concerned though, the Mark sounds fantastic at low volumes. (It also sounds fantastic at high volumes! That just takes completely different settings).
#14
Quote by GuitarDTO
Thanks for the pointers! Right now my favorite tone from my Mark is actually set in 10W mode and not that cranked, but I'll have to see how that records. Unfortunately I'm in a townhouse so cranking where I'll be recording 99% of the time isnt going to be an option. I'm not too concerned though, the Mark sounds fantastic at low volumes. (It also sounds fantastic at high volumes! That just takes completely different settings).

Yeah that's fair enough mate just keep in mind you need a fair bit of volume to get a nice thick tone the human ear picks up sound much much better than a microphone low volume recordings can sound thin and brittle even if the amp sounds good to the ear you need to get the speakers and air moving.
#15
Quote by AxSilentxLine
*awesome post* Also crank your Mark, get that thing roaring. *awesome post*

I know you say you're in a townhouse, but that really is a key element in getting good heavy recordings.

If you ever get the opportunity, try it.
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#16
Well, it sounds like I might be setting my mark up in the garage and cranking it then!! ; )
#17
you don't really need to crank it. the mic has more gain then your ears and it's way closer to the cab so it'll pick up things you can't hear.

just make sure the mic signal is hot enough.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer