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Forgetting the mic and plugging a guitar amp straight into an audio interface?

Discussion in 'Guitars' started by TBBucs, Feb 28, 2010.

  1. TBBucs

    TBBucs Guest

    I've been trying to record my guitar, and it sounds very buzzy. I've been reading a bunch of threads here and elsewhere and found that backing off on the gain can help, but I tried that (gain down to about 25% of max), but that didn't seem to help much. I also read about doubling the track and panning them in opposite directions, but while that would give it a fuller sound, it wouldn't get rid of my buzz.

    I'm using an SM57 about 4 inches away right in the center of the cone. It's also worth noting that my guitar is tuned to drop B, so I play a lot of low power chords and am looking for a really heavy tone. Just for kicks I tried using my Shure Beta-52 (yeah, the bass drum mic), and I actually think it sounded a little better (aka less buzzy) than the SM57.

    So instead of micing the amp, could I plug my line out straight into my audio interface (Firepod)? What effect would that have on my sound? If that's not a good alternative, what else would you suggest I do?
  2. jammster

    jammster Active Member

    You are using an electric guitar with gain, right? Could the buzz be from light gauge strings? Heavier gauge strings will produce less buzz but will produce more tension on the neck. Also, could be the action of your neck may be low, which is fine for light playing. I would consider bringing your guitar to a good tech and get some advice and a setup to fit your needs.
  3. TBBucs

    TBBucs Guest

    I actually have a heavier gauge string on to facilitate the drop B tuning. I had a guitar tech set everything up, so it should be ok (he has a pretty good reputation). And there's no buzz when I play, only when I play back the recording.
  4. jammster

    jammster Active Member

    Bring him your guitar with your recording and explain what your looking to do, he should be able to solve your buzz with another tweak or two.
  5. drumrob

    drumrob Active Member

    I'm going to guess that the "buzz" you are hearing is the mic being overdriven. When you say you have reduced the gain, is that on your guitar amp or on the mic preamp? If the amp is extremely loud, you will need to have the mic's gain way down, and may even need to insert a pad to make sure the mic element is not overdriven.

    As to going from your Line out, yes, IF your amp has a LINE OUT (not SPEAKER OUT) and your interface has a LINE IN (Not just MIC IN).

    Have fun!

  6. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    How loud are you playing? Try turning down. This is very possibly a rattle in the cabinet or elsewhere in the room. When playing live it's fun to make people pants flutter and the glasses on the table shake. Doesn't work so well when recording.

    As far as plugging into the Fireface: try it. What do you have to loose? It will probably be too dry and clean, but what the heck. At least it will tell you what you are really getting out of the guitar. If you have one of the Amp modeling plugins you can try that out on the clean sound and see if you like that better than your amp. Frankly a lot of people have invested a lot in an amp for live use and it doesn't work as well as a plugin for recording. Rather than spend a mint on a rig that records well, they are better with a plugin for home recordings.

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