#1
hey guys so im thinking of getting a mesa boogie dual rectifier multi watt head for gigs and recording , i havnt decided on what cabinet to get yet.

my question is , cause the head has the multi watt function i can choose 50w , if i crank the amp to get a good sound at 50w is that level going to be to loud to record at? because the only recording ive done before is with my pox x3 live and setting levels for that wasnt hard.

thx.
#3
Depends on what kind of tone you're going for. Cranked does not always mean better.
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#4
Just try it out. There is no "right or wrong" in these kind of question. It's correctly done when the outcome is the best possible.
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#6
crank 'er up!
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#7
Doesn't really need to be cranked at all, just a good volume where the speaker is using its full range (over 3 on the master volume is generally a safe bet).

The 'cranked amps sound godly' thing is a bit of a misconception from the days of non-master-volume amps.
They had no 'gain' control, but rockers would turn the volume up really high to overdrive the power tubes. In about 85% of modern amps, the overdrive comes from the preamp valves so sticking it on 11 is totally unnecessary.
#8
I would say turn it up to the volume that you like the tone of the amp. Maybe thats cranking it maybe its not. Just make sure your not clipping and you'll be fine.
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#9
Quote by Jawlytomtom
asssss loud as possible

If you have nothing actually useful to add, please go away and let the grown ups talk


TS, noone can give you an ideal recording level, for either your amp or your interface's preamp gain - it depends on lots of things and would be stupid for us to try and guess.

Cranking an amp can bring power amp saturation into play, which is great for many types of distortion and overdrive, but if you have a crap room to play it in you will get more and more nasty room overtones and uneven frequency build-up by bringing up the volume, because you increase the level of the soundwaves being bounced around the room (and if you have your mic anywhere other than bang up against the speaker, with a cardioid pattern mic, you will probably wish you'd recorded at a lower volume and just boosted the mic pre's gain instead.


Also, as a general rule I would advise instead to get down to the level of the cone of your speaker, near a place you imagine you'll want to put the mic (though obviously going an inch from the speaker shouldn't be done for very long times or the exposure will damage your hearing if the amp is loud - so maybe limit yourself to one foot away at most) and play around with the amp settings and the guitar settings until you get the sound you want to hear through the mic (or as close as you feel you will get/are happy with). Then set-up the mic, and start sweeping the mic through positions (again, approximating the general area to put the mic based on what you know about mic positioning) with headphones on, until you start to get what you want to hear/were aiming for when EQ'ing the amp.

As long as you have the sound you want, I wouldn't worry about volume levels other than making sure it isn't pissing off parents/neighbours (as I assume you record at home) and that it is at least loud enough for the amp and speaker to at least behave fairly normally (at ultra-low volumes you will have a crazy freq. response).


Quote by kyle62
The 'cranked amps sound godly' thing is a bit of a misconception from the days of non-master-volume amps. They had no 'gain' control, but rockers would turn the volume up really high to overdrive the power tubes.
Partly true.

In about 85% of modern amps, the overdrive comes from the preamp valves so sticking it on 11 is totally unnecessary.

Not true I'm afraid - there's a pretty big difference in power amp gain and preamp gain - relative to overall output from the amp itself, power amp gain is much cleaner as the output transformers are of a much higher turns ratio, and the emphasis is not on clipping the waveform, but amplifying the strength of the signal.

Cranking the power amp stage of a valve amp will provide distortion, but only at its very upper limits - it's more about the way the valve begins to behave more and more non-linearly as it goes beyond it's clean power rating, and into less-efficient overdrive stages. To take another example, I like to have the preamp gain a bit lower on my amp (on about playing live now) and makeup a little of the drive with the power amp (it's a 100W head so I don't go crazy with the volume... only enough to get the results I want) because I find I can get more gain (by a guitarist's definition, i.e easier to play legato/hammer-ons and sweeping etc.) with less distortion, than by boosting the preamp gain, meaning I can keep the distortion lower (as you would when recording) to get a more defined sound.

Finally, cranking an amp is also about the way the speaker responds at higher volumes as you get more interaction from the cabinet itself (the materials used and general design of it come into play more now) as well as the sheer volume of air being moved changing the way the sound behaves in the air at higher pressure levels, which has an effect generally associated with creating 'massive' tones - though of course whether you can really hear the size of the sound from this is something hotly debated.


Edit: When I say the bolded part of the second quote is untrue, I mean within reason - it would be rare to get the best sound by putting an amp's master volume at literally maximum position, but generally many amps have an alleged sweet spot between 6.5 and 8.5-9 (or half past 1 o'clock to 4-5 o'clock), though this varies on too many things to go into.
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Last edited by DisarmGoliath at Nov 16, 2011,
#11
"as loud as possible" is terrible advice. don't clip 0dBfs, as digital overs are really really nasty.

but simply getting a signal that is as loud as possible will lead you down a path to a smeary and unremarkable mix

I tend to hover around -18dBfs, usually a little below it.

all about headroom.
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#12
With a boogie I can only assume metal/hard rock is your genre.

Dont max it out BUT you do want to crank that bitch. Get the best sound you can, get those speakers moving.


Here is a really good read on recording distorted guitars

Kind of rants but hes funny and knows his stuff

http://badmuckingfastard.com/sound/slipperman.html
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#13
The biggest factor in how loud you want it, is up to what kind of music you're recording.

If it's classic rock, blues, etc. obviously, you're going to want to crank the amp louder, because you want the creamy power tube saturation, not the more brittle preamp distortion. This is great if you're going for a smoother tone with less gain, or you're going for a buttery lead tone.

In metal and heavier styles, a lot of power tube saturation is a bad thing. Driving your power tubes too hard leads to a muddier and looser tone, but it also gives you a more rounded and "huge" tone. On a modern high gain amp, it's important to find a happy medium between preamp and power amp gain, so as to add a more 3D and "big" sound from the poweramp, but keep it tight enough to not sound flabby in the lowend.

Quote by fastlanestoner
"as loud as possible" is terrible advice. don't clip 0dBfs, as digital overs are really really nasty.

but simply getting a signal that is as loud as possible will lead you down a path to a smeary and unremarkable mix

I tend to hover around -18dBfs, usually a little below it.

all about headroom.

He's not asking about the loudness of the signal as it comes into his interface, he's asking about how loud the actual amp is.
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
Quote by jj1565
maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





www.SanctityStudios.com
#14
Quote by maddnotez
With a boogie I can only assume metal/hard rock is your genre.

Dont max it out BUT you do want to crank that bitch. Get the best sound you can, get those speakers moving.


Here is a really good read on recording distorted guitars

Kind of rants but hes funny and knows his stuff

http://badmuckingfastard.com/sound/slipperman.html


Man, I read that ages ago and totally forgot it existed. Thanks for the refresher and a few great laughs!

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