#1
I have heard that the ideal instrument mic for recording electric guitar is the SM57. However, I'm having trouble getting that perfect sound that I hear on all of my favorite bands' recordings. Don't get me wrong, it does sound GOOD, but I have a feeling there is more to it than just plugging the microphone into my multitrack.
I have tried every mic position, from center of cone, to BEHIND the amp (which sounds pretty cool). I want to know what else do these professional studios use to get the smooth guitar sound. I remember hearing about DI Boxes or something but i don't know what they do... Any help? Thanks much!
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#2
Line it out.
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#4
Theres a loado f factors that play into account not just the mic ur using such a the room acoustics and the guitar itself the amp etc etc, just fiddle with everything really lol 1 neat trick i read was to wrap a blanket around the amp and the mic to reduce the number of reflections you get when recording in a standard square room (poor acoustics for recordig)
#5
Quote by amped00
I have heard that the ideal instrument mic for recording electric guitar is the SM57. However, I'm having trouble getting that perfect sound that I hear on all of my favorite bands' recordings. Don't get me wrong, it does sound GOOD, but I have a feeling there is more to it than just plugging the microphone into my multitrack.
I have tried every mic position, from center of cone, to BEHIND the amp (which sounds pretty cool). I want to know what else do these professional studios use to get the smooth guitar sound. I remember hearing about DI Boxes or something but i don't know what they do... Any help? Thanks much!


I got the same problem (as evident in the recordings on my profile). It almost seems like there is a lack of depth through a mixer.
#6
Tried EQ?
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#7
Does your MTR have a preamp? Or are you adapting the XLR connector to 1/4"?
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#8
If you and your Sm57 could sound exactly like your favorite professional tracks, audio engineers would be put out of business pretty fast.

Just keep trying. Alot of professional recordings use multiple amps, mics, tracks, layers, etc. To achieve the "perfect" sounds you hear. Alot of the sound is also in the preamp as Muphin mentioned.
#9
im hookin the sm57 with a 1/4" right to my multitrack
Member #5 of the The Haunted fan club.
#10
Quote by Muphin
Does your MTR have a preamp? Or are you adapting the XLR connector to 1/4"?


You'd still be using a preamp.

A good preamp is generally the key to an SM57, if you ask the pros they'll often say that an SM57 only shines through a good preamp. MrPillow pretty much sums it up, theres no formula. Not to say you can't get good sounds out of it, the key is to have a good guitarist, a guitar and amp combination that sounds god in the room, and finding the sweet spot with the mic. I can't really explain to you what to do, it just comes with experience.
#11
You'll get the smooth, full and big guitar sounds through layers. Use atleast 3 layers for the guitars to make them sound good. (in the UG production mix in my profile, each guitar has 3 layers to it).

DI will convert the line signal coming from the guitar/amp into a mic signal for the mixer/audio interface to record.
You don't need it if you can plug your guitar straight into the line input of your audio interface.
It works well to capture the clean sound of a Bass or acoustic guitar, i doubt it'ld be too impressive capture the clean sound of an electric guitar. You rarely use the completely raw clean sound of the electric guitar.

The best thing for electric guitars is to use 2-3 different mics to record the sound from the amp from 3 different locations (where is completely subjective and to the individual taste). Then you EQ the tracks and mix them up in the main mix.
Sometimes you even do double takes on electric guitars too. That is, record them twice and mix them. You could end up with 6 or more guitar tracks that way. (This is how you end up with a 42 track mix for a band composed of just 4 instruments!).

Common rule of thumb is the more layers, the bigger the guitar sound!
#12
Not really. The more layers you add, unless you really know what you are doing, you will just end up with a big pile of phase issues that will thin your sound down. The same with adding multiple microphones. Unless they are all perfectly in phase, you will end up with a sound that might initially sound bigger or thicker than 1 mic, but in the mix will sound thinner with a ****ed up, wah-sounding EQ overtone quality.


EDIT: Af, your UG mix seems to be riddled with just this. The sound is commonly referred to as the "seashell" sound. Notice how the guitar sounds almost like its at the end of a small pipe, or a close seashell? Thats a good indication of more than a small ammount of phasing.


Common rule of thumb, if you are new to the game, stick with 1 mic, 1 track per side. Layer maybe 2 if you are feeling lucky.
Last edited by MrPillow at Mar 16, 2008,
#13
^aah, 3hrs was just how much i spend on that mix getting the levels right and giving each instrument its proper place in the track.
A good loads of work still needs to be done on it (thats why i called it RAW, cuz its just the raw guitar sounds without any dynamic processing or anything).
Just didn't have the time and plug-ins to work on it. There's absolutely no EQ, compression, no limiting (thats why the track is not loud enough) or any sorta reverb or delay on it. I just mixed what was given to me.
So i do know its not a perfect mix and has loads of flaws, but i'm still quite happy with the result considering the amount of time i spent on it.


Tool is a really good example for a band that gets huge guitar sounds through multiple layers.
Any of the 80's punk bands are good example of single layered guitar sounds.

And to make up for my UG mix, you can check out a much better mix of my old band at www.myspace.com/slavestateunderground
(i know the vocals are quite bad, i wasn't as good a vocalist back then and didn't have much time to record the vocals, mostly i wasn't very good with the vocals! But the guitars are good, magic of guitar rig! And the drums are BFD)
#14
It's probably just a lack of professional level equipment, mainly, your preamp. You are using built in mixer pres whereas studios use pres that cost upwards of 5 grand maybe even 10 depending on the size of the studio.
#15
Quote by take_it_t
You'd still be using a preamp.


What microphone preamp takes 1/4" input? I'll bet the MTR is treating the signal like it's already at line level, which is why it sounds so bad.
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#16
Loads of mic preamps, if not the vast majority take 1/4" input along with XLR. Just because it isn't in the shape of an XLR doesn't mean it is directed to alternate circuitry. In higher end models with dedicated hi-z inputs and such yes, the circuitry follows a 2nd path up to the output or AD/DA's, but most in the consumer range of this forum use the same hardware for both input and signal types.
#17
Quote by MrPillow
Loads of mic preamps, if not the vast majority take 1/4" input along with XLR. Just because it isn't in the shape of an XLR doesn't mean it is directed to alternate circuitry. In higher end models with dedicated hi-z inputs and such yes, the circuitry follows a 2nd path up to the output or AD/DA's, but most in the consumer range of this forum use the same hardware for both input and signal types.


Sorry, I meant what preamps doesn't have an XLR input?
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#18
Quote by MrPillow
EDIT: Af, your UG mix seems to be riddled with just this. The sound is commonly referred to as the "seashell" sound. Notice how the guitar sounds almost like its at the end of a small pipe, or a close seashell? Thats a good indication of more than a small ammount of phasing.


Not gonna lie, the guitar sound in his mix sounds better than yours. And if he's being honest about barely spending time on it, then he has a damn good base to start with. I will admit, I totally forgot to check the phase of the mics during tracking, so you can blame that all on me.

Something else to consider: the sound of your guitar alone is going to sound pretty weird compared to how it will sound when mixed with other instruments. It will probably sound a bit harsh, but blended together it'll cut through but not sound over the top.
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#19
I was never saying mine was any better, I was just commenting on the phasing present.


EDIT: Now that I do go back and listen to mine, it does sound pretty horrid. I went to the Sonar project and checked what I did, the EQing I applied to those tracks wasn't my brightest decision in quite some time. But alas, thats what I get for not going back a day later and rechecking my mix before I submitted it! =P
#20
Quote by Muphin
What microphone preamp takes 1/4" input? I'll bet the MTR is treating the signal like it's already at line level, which is why it sounds so bad.


If it was treating it like a line level signal I can't imagine anything being audible
#21
I think until TS gives us the make/model of his mtr we won't know if it has any preamps built in and of what quality they are.
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