#1
So I have a mishmash of equipment, it works good for me and I can get very pleasing sounds. Play mostly clean for now and will add a noisegate when I start playing with other sounds later.

So the setup goes

Dean c350 passive humbuckers/single coil(dual modes) and/or Fender Powerhouse Strat active into ---->

Boss Gt-6 effects pedal with pre-amp (can get decent sound out of it) --->

Peavey Envoy 110 75W speaker --->

SM57 mic ----->

Steinberg UR22 interface ----->

Reaper DAW

Overall I can get very pleasing sounds out of it and I really like the tone. Going to build a foam isolation box around the speaker and mic to eliminate all the echoes and noise. Now the issue lies in that I don't know really what crucial mistakes to avoid and generally how I should adjust the levels at each point. The guitar, the pedal, the speaker, the interface and the workstation all have levels. I'm not sure which ones to boost and which ones to pull back on. I keep levels thus far approximately:

most settings on guitar around 7 or 8

pre-amp 5-6-7 on the eq. There is a gain on the pre-amp, a level on the pre-amp and a level on the output of the whole unit once past the pre-amp.

the speaker has an EQ and volume on the clean channel, unsure what to set it at here. Should I set it at an ideal level for what the guitar would be at without the pedal? Right now the EQ is 5-5-5

The UR22 has an input gain and phantom power (no idea what this is)

Reaper has volume control and EQ filtering, should I try to minimize the background noise with filters? There's just so many different EQ's and levels along the way and I don't know what to set them as. I'm not sure what line level is versus mic level and if I need to balance certain settings in a special way. The recordings I have thus far are all washed out and muddied because of the echoes from the room but soon I'll have demos that need heavy critiquing. You might think the equipment isn't up to a high level but I can get some very nice sounds out of the speaker that are exactly what I'm going for so I just want to capture it properly with the mic.

Any advice at all would be appreciated as I expect to build the isolation box by the end of the week
Last edited by farcry at Feb 22, 2016,
#2
The idea when recording a guitar amp is to get a good sound as you would normally play it. Then just stick a mic in front. As far as mic levels, make sure you got enough signal but you're not clipping.
Check some video tutorials on mic placement.
If recording the amp is so hard, get an IR convolver plugin and record the processor direct.
#3
So for the input into the audio workstations what's the best level to be averaging around? 4s? 7?

I make sure it never clips, the hard part is going to be layering different melodies and harmonies without sounding like butt.
#4
Quote by farcry
So for the input into the audio workstations what's the best level to be averaging around? 4s? 7?

I make sure it never clips, the hard part is going to be layering different melodies and harmonies without sounding like butt.


I usually have my input signal peaking between -14db and -7db.
#5
Quote by farcry
So for the input into the audio workstations what's the best level to be averaging around? 4s? 7?

I make sure it never clips, the hard part is going to be layering different melodies and harmonies without sounding like butt.


That's more based on your choice of sounds. Usually the more you pile on the less distorted sounds are better. You'll just have to learn as you go. Good idea might be to pick a few books.
#6
Quote by DanyFS
I usually have my input signal peaking between -14db and -7db.


ok and what about the output on the finished mp3 files? If I watch the master volume in the DAW is there a peak volume or kind of range to be within? The output seems to be quite a bit lower than each individual track
#7
Quote by farcry
ok and what about the output on the finished mp3 files? If I watch the master volume in the DAW is there a peak volume or kind of range to be within? The output seems to be quite a bit lower than each individual track


Before answering your question, know that I render my tracks in wav. There might be some differences in the peaks if rendering to mp3, but I'm not sure...

The peaks of my rendered tracks are usually at -7db. By rendering at that level, you should have enough headroom to apply some compression and EQ on your master track. I think that some people go as far as -5 to -3db. Find out what works best for you!
#8
I wouldn't bother with the isolation box.
You're not going to be getting super nice sounds from throwing a Sm57 on that set-up.
A nice thick blanket will do you the same but honestly the room sound might help give your tones a bit more lively feel. The echos shouldn't be that noticeable unless you're in a huge empty room or the amp is turned too low.

Have you tried running the Gt-6 straight into the interface and maybe use an IR?
Also, can we get some soundclips?
That always helps
My Soundcloud dudes
Recording gear:
Yahama Hs8
Saffire Pro 40
Shure Sm57
Shure Sm7b

Guitar gear :
Ebmm BFR7
Axe fx XL+
Walrus audio Janus
Ibanez Ergodyne
Black Market Custom cab
Last edited by Kyleisthename at Feb 22, 2016,
#9
Yeah I've gone straight into the workstation, sounds much worse without going through a speaker. The echoes are very noticeable to me no matter what, I built a semi-isolation box before and the quality was drastically better.

Don't see why it will be limiting, I want to make songs with the thing and shouldn't really be held back by an sm57. Plenty of good songs have been written on worse.
#10
I think another thing to keep in mind is the amount of distortion you have.

With too much gain guitars become undefinable when layering. Sometimes using less gain for a tighter guitar sound makes things heavier than putting the gain to 10 and rocking it.

As for levels, go for what sounds best. More often than not, a slightly cranked amp will sound more pleasing than trying to get make-up on the mic pre, usually relating to the interactions between poweramp, speaker drive, and the mic itself and the nice distortions that can result from that.

There's no real 'rules' as to how to record something. Some great sounds can be found by futzing about with what you have.
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