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Guitar micing too ambient

Discussion in 'Guitars' started by NolanVenhola, Aug 30, 2002.

  1. NolanVenhola

    NolanVenhola Guest

    I've been do my own recording in my basement with some complete crap equipement (a tube preamp, 4 channel mixer, sm-57, large diaphragm condenser mic, 4 other dynamic mics), and a laptop. My budget is severly limited (university student here).

    My situation is this: I mic the guitar amp with the condenser (or sm-57) mic into the preamp, into mixer, then into the laptop. Whenever I record any guitar part, the sound is SO... ambient. Like it has a pound of reverb on it already, without the bounce. Even if I put the mic in the perfect spot on the cab (Marshall 4x12), the recording sounds like the mic is in another room.

    I suspect it's the room I'm in. Is there any kind of ideal room to record in? Any other techniques I should check out?
     
  2. If you are putting the mic right on the cab, like under 5" away, I don't think you should be having the problem you are having.

    I would think that your laptop recording setup is the suspect. Tell us more about your setup after the mic. Is your mic going direct into the tube pre, then directly to your computer? What soundcard? If your signal is going through the mixer before the computer listen to the signal with the headphone jack or something.

    When you record other things, like voice, does the same problem occur?

    Ian
     
  3. NolanVenhola

    NolanVenhola Guest

    The mic is going into the mic preamp (it's an ART Tube MP) the output (XLR) is going into the first channel on the mixer. The mixer then goes into the laptop. I'm using the generic laptop sound card line in (ie garbage).

    I'll check out the sound at the mixer. I record direct from the amp as well, and that sounds pretty decent. I'd just like to be able to mic the amp to get the warmer tone of the amp through the mic.

    oh ya, vocals come through pretty good. Drums however are still sounding a bit distant like the guitar. I'll have to isolate where the sound is taking a dump.

    It's either the mic, the preamp, the mixer, or the laptop. 99% sure it's not the mic. The preamp shouldn't be a problem either. So either the mixer or laptop. Probably laptop.

    Can anyone suggest an external or PCMCIA sound card that is meant for recording??
     
  4. rayman

    rayman Guest

    Breezes wrote
    I've been do my own recording in my basement with some complete crap equipement (a tube preamp, 4 channel mixer, sm-57, large diaphragm condenser mic, 4 other dynamic mics), and a laptop. My budget is severly limited (university student here).

    What kind of gear? Name of brands please.

    My situation is this: I mic the guitar amp with the condenser (or sm-57) mic into the preamp, into mixer, then into the laptop. Whenever I record any guitar part, the sound is SO... ambient. Like it has a pound of reverb on it already, without the bounce. Even if I put the mic in the perfect spot on the cab (Marshall 4x12), the recording sounds like the mic is in another room.

    Mic placement is important, diffrent types of mics need to be put in diffrent placements. How far from the 4X12 cab? Is it a strait (lower) or curved (top) cab? Is it center of the speaker or toward the outside of the speaker (webbing). You should not run directly into the pre, use the insert on the channle or mixer output. All of your equipment does work? You tryed it with other things and other systems?

    I suspect it's the room I'm in. Is there any kind of ideal room to record in? Any other techniques I should check out?

    There are many books and articals that can tell & show you more than I can post. If your on a low budget and can not, will not spend any cash on better gear or books & mag's that can help you and you can always refer back to (I do this all the time with my college books). I think you should put away the crappie preamp and use the lap top and mixer. If you have anyplug-insuse them the best you can for mixdown.

    good luck
    Raymond Ward
    A.S. Recording Arts
     
  5. As far as a PCMCIA card for recording, one of the few that crossed my mind is the Echo Layla. 24 bit, 8 in/out, but kinda expensive. I think that they also have ones with less I/O.

    Heres the link for echo stuff:
    http://

    Don't know if it'll work with your setup though. There are more and more companies coming out with laptop interfaces. Might wanna wait till after AES, some new ones might be coming out.

    Ian
     
  6. volodia

    volodia Guest

    From the elements you give I would highly suspect the room to be too "resonant"(excuse my english),since you say it happens with the drums as well.Your cabinet (4x12) is a loud one .Try to record at lower volumes or with a smaller amp.Try to dampen the sound of your room.Don't put your amp parrallel to the opposite wall.Try to minimize the reflections.
    Hope you'll find a solution.
    Volodia
     
  7. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Go to the Home Depot and but a moving blanket. ($15) No recordist should be without a stack of these, they are very handy. Place the blanket over the cab and the mic isolating it from the rest of the room. That should fix the problem. It sounds to me like your room has a lot of short verb in it. Get more blankets and put them up on the walls. This may help with the sound to tape (sorry old habit) disk. It may help with the sound while your mixing too. Fats
     
  8. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    Huh??

    What cedar said. Packing blankets (i owen a dozen) are the "poor man's" goboe
     
  9. rayman

    rayman Guest

    Recorderman wrote

    Huh??

    What is it your trying to say here? The insert is the best way to use a pre. Are you saying that you have never used an insert before? Or do you not have any open mindness to believe anything but what you (must not be much if you've never used the common dynamic input for pre's) think you know.

    grow up
     
  10. tubedude

    tubedude Active Member

    Hmmm, I dont get it either, though... why even USE the mixer at all? Its more crap in the chain as far as I can tell. As far as an insert and then to the pre, how does that work?
    I say its the room. Try blankets and pillows, and then a mic with a tighter pattern like a Beta 57.
    Peace.
     
  11. e-cue

    e-cue Active Member

    Uhm Raymond, sorry but I didn't quite understand this either. Are you talking about going from a mic into a mic pre then into an insert return of a mixer to bypass the line input?
    Please don't jump down my throat from my ignorance, but I have used inserts a million times, and I'm always open for new ideas. I just don't understand the process you mentioned.
     
  12. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    Hey raymond. I do throw tantrums (to my own deficit sometimes) but I didn't , and won't (no f'n reason to) here.

    I said "HUH?" so that maybe you would go back and read what you wrote...and make it clearer.

    I know what you meant...but you say'd it very criptically.

    What you meant (I am assuming here everybody...so i'm setting myself up for some of that carolina attitude...made famous by other people from that 'neck o' the woods)was;
    do not use the outboard mic pre-amp. Instead use the mic-pre amp in the board/console/desk(probably too brit and describes larger format ones really). THEN, send out the INSERT SEND to your soundcard/tape/ect. If your "board" is of the lower priced versions then your insert is probably one of those TRS; tip send, ring return types....un-balanced.....but what the heck. anything is worth a try. What the original question spoke about doesn't sound like ANYTHING a differrnce in pre's can account for ....but it's worth a try.

    how did I do master Raymond
     
  13. NolanVenhola

    NolanVenhola Guest

    I don't have any "pres" on my mixer, it's a 4 channel crap powered mixer meant for doing small pa work. But I found a position for the cabinet at 60 degrees from the wall and I'm getting a much better sound.

    Thanks all.

    -Nolan
    (Mr. low low low budget recorder)
     
  14. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    Good to hear that breeze. Experimentation and evaluation are the keys. Use your ears really is a rule to live by.
     
  15. rayman

    rayman Guest

    Raymond wrote
    You should not run directly into the pre, use the insert on the channle or mixer output.

    This is not hard to understand, plug the mic into the channle input of the mixer and put the pre across the insert. It will work balanced or not, you just have to use the right cable. TRS with the lows and grounds tied together (if you are unbalanced), this is a basic cable and connection.

    Breezes wrote
    I mic the guitar amp with the condenser (or sm-57) mic into the preamp, into mixer, then into the laptop.

    This hook up will work but you will have more controle useing the insert. He never stated what type of mixer he had, if there is no insert as I said, don't use the pre.

    PS...Recorderman, I only live in NC I'm not from here. And the neck of the woods around here is mostly to red for my tastes. But I do live here and its where I call home, if you will read the quotes I've inserted at the top of this post. Do you see Breezes was saying that he was running the mic strait to the pre and out the pre into the mixer? I do not care how you do, I do care that you made me feel I knew not what I was talking about. That is an insult, any where you may live, just try to think about something before you write it.

    Raymond Ward
    A.S. Recording Arts
     
  16. e-cue

    e-cue Active Member

    Soooooooo, How's that "ignore user" function work again here???
     
  17. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Raymond,
    If I have this right, your sugestion is to plug the mic into the mixers input (which will route it to the mixers pre amp for that channel) then patch a second mic pre across the insert. Is that correct? Fats ps if thats the right scenareo, why would you want to do that?
     
  18. Breezes, glag you solved the problem. Had I seen this a little sooner, like days ago, I would've suggested to park that amp in a corner up at a bit of an angle with the mic in front of it and a blanket over it using the '57. :c:
     
  19. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    "Everbody Loves _________________"

    As a moderator here, I guess it's somewhat of a duty to reply.

    Please don't feel insulted Raymond...I'm just kidding with the "Everybody Loves Raymond" joke above....we all value your input here. We can all learn something everyday (except me..I don't have enough time to learn anymore...LOL)

    Breezes replies that his pre-amp it an ART-tube and that his mixer is just a little line mixer. So I thinkhis only choice for pre is the ART tube pre. His problem appeared to be (and upon fouther reflection of the group mind) acoustical.

    Breezez; my only suggestion to add to the acuostical fixes, is to gor straight from the ART tube pre right into your sound card. Electric Gtrs really do not need any other processing than mic-pre-soundcard(or tape, ect).

    Put on some headphones and have a friend play the "part" (i.e. the actual guitar part to be played for that song) [ I realize this may be nect to immposible], other wise strum some chords with the cans (headphones) on and with the other hand (can we say octopus) move the mic around the cabinet, across the speakers, up, down, closer, away..until you finsd the sweet spot for the "part" you desire. The voice coil (where the center dome joims the cone) is generally the brightest spot. It gets mellower from ther to the edge of the cone. Guitar (choice of if you have more than one; pick-up selection,tone controls) and amp adjustments, followed by mic choice (if any) and placement, along with the acoustic advice (I generally stick amps up on chairs to tighten up the bottom end) sholud get you there.
    :c:
     
  20. jajjguy

    jajjguy Guest

    straying off topic, but Raymond's suggestion reminded me of my first major sound upgrade in my 4track cassette days. i bought a mackie 1202VLZ mixer to use for pres and then went from that into the effect return of the 4track machine. so i bypassed the worst part of the 4track: the pre and mixer section. turns out, the actual tape deck portion of the machine was pretty good (old tascam 244), so this helped a lot.

    of course this has nothign to do with breezes' situation.
     

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