#1
Does anyone have any experience in this? It seems no matter what I do it's either too quiet or it clips from me hitting the guitar. I'm trying to record Hunters Moon by Andy Mckee and can't even get a good raw recording. I have no experience or idea with compressing/normalising either. My mic placement is alright, facing around between the 12th and 14th fret about a foot or so away. I'll get to things like EQ and reverb later for now I just need the levels to be set.

Edit: The gear I'm using is:
- Fender NAT something or other acoustic (cheap $200)
- Perception 220 large diaphragm condenser mic
- Reaper (trial ver)
- Windows 7
Last edited by Jimjambanx at Sep 18, 2014,
#2
Clips of what you're getting and what you would wanna change would help us helping you.

As a general rule, if ya ask me, to record acoustic guitars you should put your mic nearer the guitar unless your room sounds good.
Something like 5 to 10cm (around 2 to 4") perpendicularly to the guitar, in front of the neck joint, possibly a bit angled towards the soundhole, and possibly with a LPF engaged on the mic.

Then the rest comes from technique - you can't expect your recordings to be good if you don't sound just as good in real life, so mind the dynamics when you play.

To set your levels simply hit the guitar hard and set the input gain so it doesn't clip even when you do that.

You though will need a better guitar, a better mic, possibly a better sounding room and arguably a better technique to sound like andy mckee.
Name's Luca.

Quote by OliOsbourne
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Quote by Cajundaddy
Clue: amplifiers amplify so don't turn it on if you need quiet.
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#3
Learn your compression. Set it so that nothing clips when you hit the guitar and record (regardless of everything else being too quiet. Once it's recorded put the ReaComp plugin on the track, and set the threshold so that it only goes over on particularly hard strums or the hitting (basically any major peaks on the waveform). Now set the ratio, somewhere between 2:1 and 10:1 (I'd probably go around 4:1 but YMMV) should be good. ReaComp's default attack and release settings should be fine, but play with them if you want (attack is how quickly the compressor kicks in, hold is how long it stays there, and release is how long it takes to back off gradually).
#5
Thanks for the suggestions guys.
As a general rule, if ya ask me, to record acoustic guitars you should put your mic nearer the guitar unless your room sounds good.

That could actually work, my room has garbage acoustics (as does the rest of my house), and I believe the LPF is currently on on my mic.
I've recorded 2 previous videos from a while ago to give you an idea of the best sound I was able to get (which is still very bad)
/watch?v=ES_Yx8CWgYs&list=UU1V4jK6o-flN_bhPF_tLBSQ
/watch?v=ntVxAvpeEEw&index=3&list=UU1V4jK6o-flN_bhPF_tLBSQ

Learn your compression. Set it so that nothing clips when you hit the guitar and record (regardless of everything else being too quiet. Once it's recorded put the ReaComp plugin on the track, and set the threshold so that it only goes over on particularly hard strums or the hitting (basically any major peaks on the waveform). Now set the ratio, somewhere between 2:1 and 10:1 (I'd probably go around 4:1 but YMMV) should be good. ReaComp's default attack and release settings should be fine, but play with them if you want (attack is how quickly the compressor kicks in, hold is how long it stays there, and release is how long it takes to back off gradually).

I'll try that thanks.
#6
Both vid's point out that you may definitely benefit in having the mic closer to the guitar.

Then, in the first vid you're noticeably off beat in a bit of moments, and in one (at least, I didn't watch the whole thing) part where you play on the strings only, the volume of your playing lowers a lot, and while a compressor may solve both things, solving the thing in real life is better.

In the second vid the biggest concern is a pretty bad (imo) reverb sound created by you hitting the guitar over the neck with the left hand.

So, I'd try putting the mic closer, and possibly disengaging the LPF depending on where you put the mic.
Name's Luca.

Quote by OliOsbourne
I don't know anything about this topic, but I just clicked on this thread because of your username :O
Quote by Cajundaddy
Clue: amplifiers amplify so don't turn it on if you need quiet.
Quote by chrismendiola
I guess spambots are now capable of reading minds.
#7
Personally I would use a High Pass Filter at around 75hz to eliminate the bulk of LF rumble, close mic placement, and lots of compression before sound hits the recording track. Experiment with compression to find the best compromise between dynamics and control. Recording in an ugly sounding room is never a good plan for acoustic guitar so treat the room or move elsewhere.

This guy captures a lot of percussive effects on guitar:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S33tWZqXhnk&list=RDS33tWZqXhnk#t=22
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis

Guthrie on tone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmohdG9lLqY
#8
Quote by Spambot_2
Both vid's point out that you may definitely benefit in having the mic closer to the guitar.

Then, in the first vid you're noticeably off beat in a bit of moments, and in one (at least, I didn't watch the whole thing) part where you play on the strings only, the volume of your playing lowers a lot, and while a compressor may solve both things, solving the thing in real life is better.

In the second vid the biggest concern is a pretty bad (imo) reverb sound created by you hitting the guitar over the neck with the left hand.

So, I'd try putting the mic closer, and possibly disengaging the LPF depending on where you put the mic.


The drop in volume in the second vid was supposed to be intentional, but the mic wasn't positioned very well so it makes it sound like a technical flop rather than a dynamic change. The playing both are poor I'll agree, the first one was just meant to be an upload test, and the second was part of a contest that was closing off applications the next day, so I had to settle for less.

The reverb does sound horrible I know, but I honestly have not heard a single reverb sound in Reaper that doesn't sound bad, at least when I use it.

I did a few tests today and found moving the mic closer to help quite a bit, though even with the advice on compression, I still could not even tell what or if it was doing anything :/
#9
Quote by Cajundaddy
Recording in an ugly sounding room is never a good plan for acoustic guitar so treat the room or move elsewhere.


Can't do that unfortunately. The only place I can set up all my equipment is my room, and even if I could move it, the rest of the house sounds just as bad. Every room has either carpet or rubber like floors. Outside is even worse. Treating any room would also cost too much.