#1
Whats the best way to record vocals?

How does the pro's get their voice cyrstal clear?


Is it best for the mic to be close or have it far away but with the input signal stronger so it captures the chracter of the voice?


If anyone can help then please help me


Thanks
Trivium


"You take their lives away as they sleep
The blade kisses at their throats.
Life bleeds without a chance to weep
You take, you take their lives away"


#2
1.condenser mic, if you can, the higher end the better, but the MXL's do jsut fine.

2. complete and utter silence whereve you record the vocals, so the input gain (or trim) doesnt have to be that high, and every breath and nuance is captured (this is where the condenser comes int as well)

3. reverb and delay. when used with subtlety, can work WONDERS
SG
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#3
I think somewhere in between where you said, close, but not too close. your mouth should really be no closer than 3 inches but no further than 6 inches from the mic.
The closer you are, the more likely your voice is to be distorted, but if you're further away it won't pick up the sound as well.
Basically, think how you get a good sound live, and then tidy it up a bit, add a bit of reverb to your voice and whatever.
also, the pros can afford to get a really good producer to tinker with their voice in post-production, hence how ozzy osbourne sounds like he can still sing on his latest album, yet he can hardly talk.
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#4
it all depends on the situation, take the time to experiment! Although generally, people try to keep the input gain to a minimum so the signal-noise ratio is the best it can be.

there's an article on here about recording, was posted this month. It has an extensive list of EQ tips, that will definitely help you refine the sound in the way that you want.
#5
thanks!

What good condenser mics are there out to buy at the lowest price possible? I use this dynamic mic that my dad gave me it came along with a £400 karaoke machine so im assuming is not that bad of a mic lol but i just feel if i need a mic that captures the voice better!

Is it good to double the vocal track to give it that extra thickness? or in my case i actually tripled it by having vocals in Center with another vocal panned slightly to the left (about 12% Left) and another panned to the Right (the same about 12%) so its a nice spread but iv noticed that sorta pushes the vocal to the back.
Trivium


"You take their lives away as they sleep
The blade kisses at their throats.
Life bleeds without a chance to weep
You take, you take their lives away"


#6
cheers ill have a look on here for the EQ tips
Trivium


"You take their lives away as they sleep
The blade kisses at their throats.
Life bleeds without a chance to weep
You take, you take their lives away"


#8
Quote by Y0UNGBL00D
1.condenser mic, if you can, the higher end the better, but the MXL's do jsut fine.

2. complete and utter silence whereve you record the vocals, so the input gain (or trim) doesnt have to be that high, and every breath and nuance is captured (this is where the condenser comes int as well)

3. reverb and delay. when used with subtlety, can work WONDERS


4. A good singer - crap in = crap out

5. a good interface - an important piece of hardware

6. High end preamps - try not to use the ones on the interface unless you know they are great.

7. Know your sequencer program - this will make or break your sound. You need experience to get great sound, not just high end gear.

Acoustic treatment is important with high end condensers since they normally pick up every little noise around the room.

check out Tweaks board and guide, the guide is linked in my sig and you will find the message board linked in the guide page, (top links).

Theres polls there for gear in different price ranges. I would need to know your overall budget to start listing gear for you.
Last edited by moody07747 at Apr 24, 2008,
#9
Hey Moody07747 long time no speak.

Ill have a look at your tweak guide i forgot about that lol.

Im only in a part itme job just now and ill be getting a house soon so my budget will be fairly low for the meanwhile...

Have you ever heard of "Dynamic Microphone SkyTronic 173.454"? is it anygood or is it a crap mic? Iv got one just now cause my dad got it was a £400 karaoke machine and he gave it to me lol.

Iv also got this "Yoga E-278 stereo Condenser Microphone".

Any suggestions for a specific mic? or would the ones i have be ok?
Trivium


"You take their lives away as they sleep
The blade kisses at their throats.
Life bleeds without a chance to weep
You take, you take their lives away"


#10
Well higher end mics wont break up at higher volumes. A condenser is recommended but a dynamic will do.

I use both the Shure SM57 dynamic and MXL 990/991 condenser mics. I like the 990 for vocals and the price for that set is nice. You do need to power them with phantom power so be sure your interface has 48v phantom power on board with its preamps...(most do these days).

As for the mics you have, I have never heard of them so I cant say how good they are but you may have some luck looking up each mic on google for a review.
#11
the set up im using is as follows...

Guitar/bass/mic plugged into Boss BR-8 Digital recording Studio (an 8 track which has decent guitar effects and vocal effects such as de-essels, compressors etc) a red/white cable (cant remember the proper name for them) straight from line out of the 8 track straight into line in of my Creative sound blaster interface which then uses USB to my laptop. Im using Reaper to record on my laptop which i think is a great piece of software and for the drums i use Session drummer 2 plug in.

I dont think iv got phantom power although i do know that my dad has a small alesis Mixer with Phantom power but im like 300 miles from him just now so i cant exactly get it from him anytime soon lol.
Trivium


"You take their lives away as they sleep
The blade kisses at their throats.
Life bleeds without a chance to weep
You take, you take their lives away"


#12
Regardless of what you are recording, the secret to great sound is that every step in the chain needs to be great. Order of importance is generally the order in which the sound passes.

1. Great singer
2. Great mic. (and different 'great mics' work better/worse with other 'great preamps')
3. Great preamp
4. Great engineer - mic placement, mic selection to best match particular voice, etc.)
5. Great room
6. Great interface

There is no simple answer, though, really. As I said above, it depends on the voice of the singer. One singer might sound awesome though a Neumann U87 (practically *anything* sounds great through one of those... there's a reason why they're so expensive!), but another singer might sound best with a Shure SM-7. (Michael Jackson's Thriller vocals were done with one of those.... it's a dynamic!) That said, different mics like to be loaded differently (the effect of supplying varying amounts of phantom power) and respond better/worse depending on the voltage. An awesome preamp, like a Neve, SSL, or API will make practically any mic sound awesome. It's the knowledge and experience of the engineer to match the right mic to the voice, and the right pre to the mic, etc. Producers like Mutt Lange will spend an entire day auditioning various mic and preamp combinations for a single snare drum! There's a reason why people like him are paid what they are.

If all of this stuff is in place, the amount of processing will be minimal. If you have to take a crap voice and make it sound golden..... that's a tough job for anyone. Crap in = crap out, no matter what autotune, reverb, delay, etc. you are using. You can spend all day polishing a turd, but in the end, all you get is a really shiny turd.

Best bet for a beginner: Start with your MXL/Marshall/Studio Projects condensor, and run it into an M-audio interface with a built-in preamp. If you have a good singer, you'll be off to a good start.

I think 6 inches is still way to close for most vocal recordings. You get no 'air' in the sound. A vocal should 'breathe.' Too far away, and you start to get a 'roomy' sound, which you probably don't want unless you have a proper room. I usually aim for 12-24 inches.... closer to 24 usually if I am using a condensor. I'll get up closer if I am using a dynamic. They don't seem to mind as much.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
Last edited by axemanchris at Apr 24, 2008,
#13
like moody, i use the SM57 as well as the MXR 990/991, although i am pretty sure my 990 is toasted (too much abuse), but i havent used it in months (im out to sea on a warship)
but yeah, good singer. projection, tone, character and consitency of voice can make a recording great and require a whole lot less post production magic.
all the interfaces and sequencer programs are all good advice too, nice moody, but that's if that's the way you are recording (admittedly, most everyone is, and since its at home, im sure thats what you mean), but if you are just running into a 4 trakc or something, or trying to cut a demo, the MXR 990 (good point on phantom power. rolls also sells a stand alone unit, if neccessary), complete silence, will get you a decent baseline vocal track that you can double, triple, octuple, reverb the XXXX out of, and send through 9 supercomputers later if necessary.
SG
Thunderverb 50
Foot Computers
Beer and snacks
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