#1
i was talking to jimmy bower last night after an eyehategod show about gear and he said he keeps all his gear at the same settings for live and studio work. which includes having the volume on ten. (note: a double stack turned all the way up in a tiny bar is fuc. king. loud.) i was wondering if anyone new the best way to go about recording an amp on full blast because nothing sounds quite like it. i imagine it would easily blow out the diaphragm on a condenser mic, so do i just jam an sm57 in there and hope for the best?
#2
It wouldn't blow out most modern condensers - they can handle 140+dB. It wouldn't hurt it. Usually SM57s are common on amps, and sound pretty good. The issue is gonna be keeping the pres clean.
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Quote by Anonden
You CAN play anything with anything....but some guitars sound right for some things, and not for others. Single coils sound retarded for metal, though those who are apeshit about harpsichord probably beg to differ.
#4
If your condenser isn't clipping you'll need a preamp with more headroom or a mic with less hot output, both are expensive
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#5
Why would you want to? There's a point on all tube amps where turning it up ceases to do anything good to your tone and instead starts to make it super muddy because the tone becomes so warm and saturated that all definition is lost.
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
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maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





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#6
For home recording with a crancked amp I would definitely recommend using the Palmer PDI-03 speaker simulator. I use it to record at home with my volume on 10 and I can easily record like that in the middle of the night into my headphones.
I have recently used it while recording some pedal demos and it sounds great.
You can check out one of them here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0JcQb51zp4g or just put Palmer PDI-03 into youtube, there are some great videos that go through every little aspect of that device.
If you're getting one make sure you get the impendance right though!
#7
And for studio recording I can't imagine having any issues with microphones or preamps.
SM57 or e906 should be able to take any volume you can produce with any amp/cab combination.
#8
Quote by MatrixClaw
Why would you want to? There's a point on all tube amps where turning it up ceases to do anything good to your tone and instead starts to make it super muddy because the tone becomes so warm and saturated that all definition is lost.


sorry MatrixClaw Clearly you have not played though a Tube amp at high volume ??

Forget My personal experience for now,. the list of stories from everyone from Eddie Van Halen, James Hetfield, to Stevie Ray Vaughan etc etc talking about High volume "magic" of a tube amp's are simple endless GOOGLE IT !!,. for me IT"S THE BEST thing in the world to play guitar in a room with a 100 watt or 200 watt full stack at FULL VOLUME !!! , if you do not think it sounds better.. well insert negative comment that offences you and your mother here.

Sorry you clearly need to play at full volume alot more to post opinion on this subject.

High volume and tube amps just go together. that for me that is "some" of the reason we have 5 - 15 watt tube amps today,. because you can push them to the extreme and you get a different sound ( and you can play at home and not have to hire a studio or have the cops come around )

when you hit the limits of the tube amp circuit it does sound different,. this is fact again google it in the way tube amps are designed, you would have to be typing with you forehead and fists not find the reliable information to back this opinion up on tube amps.

and in relation that,.. if you push a 100Watt to the extreme ,...well you get more... it's not rocket science it's HEAVY METAL !!!


as for recording levels My 2 cents is as long as you have ALOT of head room in your recording level you will be in a good position, NEVER get any where near the red level ,.stay at mid level on your recording levels, because you NEED the head room , it also gives you far more range and depth in your recording.

you can always pump up the volume but you can never bring it down AND magical get more dynamic's and definition. SO always lower the levels when recording so you capture EVERYTHING.
#9
Quote by T4D
sorry MatrixClaw Clearly you have not played though a Tube amp at high volume ??

Have you ever been to the GG&A forum? I'm fairly known over there as being one of the biggest amp wh0res on this forum...

I've owned over 100 tube amps and play often at very high volumes. I currently own a Peavey 5150, Mesa Roadster, 30w Bogner 101B Prototype and a Fender Vibro Champ XD. It's a well known fact that power tube saturation creates sag and with too much sag, it makes the amp loose and muddy.

Yes, power amp saturation makes an amp sound "big," but there's a point on every amp where pushing it too far will muddy the tone and make the speakers start to break up in an unpleasant way. There's a reason why modern 100w master volume amps have such a large power section - It's because the tone mostly comes from the preamp, not the power amp. They put so many watts on those amps, so you have plenty of headroom for the amp to stay tight and clear. You can crank them up for gig volumes, drive the power section and little, and still have plenty of wiggle room left to keep the amp clear.

The market has had an influx of low wattage amps lately, which allow you to achieve the "cranked" sound at lower volumes, but that doesn't necessarily mean they should be turned to 10... It honestly cracks me up when people talk about their little 1W amps and how they sound so awesome because they can crank them to full without being insanely loud. I guess if you enjoy a mushy tone with little definition (ie: they work okay for blues leads...), they're cool. Take my Vibro Champ XD for example - It's not the greatest amp, but man, that thing sounds like utter shit when turned all the way up and so did my original tweed 1960 Fender Champ, my Jet City JCA20H, my Duncan Convertible when attenuated down to low wattage and my current 30w Bogner. The reason I own the Vibro is because I can crank it a little to get some power tube saturation, which gives it a nice creamy tone for classic tones, but if I have to play louder than it's capable at ~6-7 on the volume, I'll plug into something different.

For metal, you'd be insane to turn up the amp to 10. Many of the greatest metal tones ever recorded were with the volume much lower than you'd expect.
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.





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#10
From Eddie van Halen wiki
"a single Celestion speaker cabinet was used, and a variac set to around 90 volts was used on Eddie's main 100 watt Marshall head, mainly to lower the amplifier's volume. The volume control and all other controls on his Marshall head were set to maximum or 10. "

From SRV wiki
" Vaughan became especially obsessed with the sound produced by his amplifiers. When In Step was being rehearsed, in New York City, Díaz brought 32 amplifiers, as well as 200-watt Marshall 4×15" bass cabinets. According to Díaz, "the whole studio was taken up with amps--upstairs, downstairs, every room was filled with amps. So he would hit these notes, and the whole place would rattle."

Ok you have your opinion but this is an art form and the world wide internet so there is NO need to stand on a high horse and yell your opinion is the right one.. Relax again it's very easy to find stories of successful musicians who have recorded at very high volumes... just like many who say lower volumes are better (I sort of agree if your playing (country and Western or ballads) I personally feel there's alot more energy when things are at 11 but your are different.

OK but I think the best thing to do is try it, and listen then try the other option and listen. that it would probably take less time then writing a reply to this thread.
Last edited by T4D at Nov 21, 2013,
#11
Eddie's Plexi is a non-master volume design and doesn't have independent gain controls, thus you have to crank the volume to drive both the preamp and power amp section. If you'll notice in my earlier post, I say:

Quote by MatrixClaw
There's a reason why modern 100w master volume amps have such a large power section.


Non-master volume amps have to be cranked to get any form of gain, otherwise they are largely clean sounding at reasonable volumes. EVH had to crank that amp to 10 because it simply is not possible to reach the levels of gain he needed for his songs without doing so. Even so, he was using a variac to attenuate his signal, so it's not like he was actually recording at full volume, where the speakers were experiencing grainy breakup. I guarantee you he's not cranking his modern Soldanos, EVH, Peavey, Bogner, etc. amps to 10.

As far as the information on that Wiki is concerned, they also mention that his amp was modded, whereas Mike Soldano claims in this video starting at around 7 minutes in, that the Marshall used on those records was bone stock. I trust Mike's word much more than Wikipedia, or even EVH - who has given false information about his gear many, many times:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UBIcicqIfCM

As far as SRV goes, he also largely used non-master volume amps, so again... he HAD to crank them to get any distortion out of them. That being said, your quote doesn't say he was turning his amps up to 10 and the part that references a 200w Marshall is talking about a cab, not an amp. Also, SRV was a blues player, and I state here:

Quote by MatrixClaw
I guess if you enjoy a mushy tone with little definition (ie: they work okay for blues leads...), they're cool.
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
#12
MatrixClaw, hardcore81 didn't tell you what amp he had ? Why are you making assumption about the model he is using ?

and again MANY i mean F&*k loads of artists have recording at High levels, not just EVH AND SRV

(sorry I couldn't find a James Hetfield reference I must have read it in a magazine etc It was something like the SRV story where the Amp room was making the whole building "feeling it" but I see no need to be your google monkey.)

and I Personally Know there's a difference between a Mesa at 6 and a Marshall at 10 across the board, You would have to be deaf to not to hear that the Mesa is LOUDER !!

does that mean the Mesa is Not being recorded at Loud volume levels because it's set to 6 ?
Last edited by T4D at Nov 22, 2013,
#13
Power amp sectiob when pushed to the max almost always is nice, but we now live in an era of most amps produced today gain up the pre-amp, which in fact becomes muddy when set to high.

I have an Orange RV 50 watt combo, and gain at 5 is already more then enough. Everything above, and the perceived volume when mixed with other instruments is actually less! (accents are lost).

People often mistake saturation for loud more then you'd think.

There's a difference to tube amps today, and the old ones.

Agreed not all amps rely purely on pre-amp gain these days, but if looking at the most used/popular ones produced these days most of them do.

There's also a difference between cranking a clean channel, and a gain channel.

Something without a master volume in this context could be named a "clean" channel, cause I can crank my Orange's clean channel full and I get a nice crunch, but it's still quite less than gain 6 on dirty channel!

To round this off and meet your opinion halfway. Recording at loud volumes your playing (hopefully lol) adjusts to dealing with dynamics which are mostly likely wider, as well as playing cleaner and/or notice stuff you couldn't first, because the projection was to weak at lower volumes.

Recording loud is often better, because loudness does seem to portray on an recording. Not to mention mic-ing the room a bit would increase this perceived loudness and will give a sense of a "louder" band.

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Last edited by xxdarrenxx at Nov 22, 2013,
#14
Quote by MatrixClaw
Why would you want to? There's a point on all tube amps where turning it up ceases to do anything good to your tone and instead starts to make it super muddy because the tone becomes so warm and saturated that all definition is lost.

He got the idea from the dude in Eyehategod, that muddy saturated low definition tone is sort of the goal in sludge metal.

Though I agree trying to mic up a big tube amp at 10 is a bit ridiculous. You can still get insanely heavy saturated tube tones at much lower volumes.
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#15
Once you turn the post up past 12 o'clock on my 120W 6505+ head, i've noticed you dont really gain anything in the way of volume, or tone. And 12 o'clock is loud as hell anyway haha.
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#16
+1 to everything matrixclaw said.

In general you want to use as little gain and volume as possible whilst still getting the tone/feel you want (and on most master volume amps that isn't going to be everything set to 10 - especially for metal).
Metal, especially modern metal, does not use much power amp distortion.
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