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stereo doubling question

When I record my songs, I double the guitar tracks, or what is needed to be doubled anyway.
When mixing, with my headphones on, it sounds great. it sounds how it is supposed to sound. however, when I listen to it without headphones, the guitars clash.

Without the doubling, the rhythm guitar tracks sound too "dead center". It makes it very thin sounding.

How can I make it so the guitars don't clash when listening to it on a stereo or out of computer monitors?

if you need sound samples of my demos, just look up Lunchbox Symphonic on facebook or bandcamp.



bigtree Thu, 04/05/2012 - 18:03

pan them, and jog the tracks a few mill away from each other. Do not make them fall on the same sec of the timeline ( make sense) . Put the left track a bit ahead of the time line and the right a bit after the timeline.

Lavaxtris Thu, 04/05/2012 - 19:04

But I shouldn't need to do that. I'm double tracking already (playing the same part twice). I do pan them. Maybe you should read my issue again...

bigtree Thu, 04/05/2012 - 20:16

Okay, I re read your question and do what I said on the second post. Whats happening is your tracks are nulling a bit. You need to move them a way from each other a bit. Try it, I think you will be thrilled.

Lavaxtris Thu, 04/05/2012 - 21:05

*facepalm* they are panned. all I am saying is that when I listen to my songs in a setting that would simulate a mono track (aka out of a stereo system or in the car) the guitars clash. in that type of setting, I don't want it to sound like two guitars are playing, but I do want them to sound doubled when listening to the songs in stereo (like when my headphones are on) without changing the guitar tones too much, or making it sound too thin.

I notice professional recordings have the effect I want. I just want to know how they manage to keep the tracks together in mono, but separate and full in stereo.

sachit Fri, 04/06/2012 - 01:00

Lavaxtris, post: 387760 wrote: *facepalm* they are panned.

audiokid, post: 387757 wrote: You need to move them a way from each other a bit. Try it, I think you will be thrilled.

I think the OP misunderstood. From what I understood audiokid suggested that the OP move the tracks away from each other in the TIME domain. In other words, introduce a time delay between the tracks. This is over and above moving the pan pots. You pan the tracks left and right, THEN you nudge one a few milliseconds away from the other. Experiment until you get the "stereo" feeling you need without phasing issues in mono.

Lavaxtris Fri, 04/06/2012 - 10:26

like I said, I shouldn't need to do that. I'm double tracking already. I'm not having phasing issues. maybe you should look up my material and hear what I am talking about. listen to it with headphones on, then out of your computer monitors.

maybe I'm just being too picky, but it just seems a bit messy in mono than the average studio recording

bigtree Fri, 04/06/2012 - 11:20

Yes, that is exactly what you do or you use plug-ins that do that for you. Same thing. You are obviously just starting out, welcome. Beyond this, you need incredible gear and a lot of knowledge to get the last 2%. And that comes along with having high end recording gear. You cannot know this until you use it.
Post a streaming link here ( not a download) if you want more help?

Lavaxtris Fri, 04/06/2012 - 12:07

no, I'm not just starting out. and I'm going to stop replying to this post because nobody here is understanding my problem.

as for the streaming:

[[url=http://[/URL]="…"]Lunchbox Symphonic | Stow, OH | Rock / Punk / Indie | Music, Lyrics, Songs, and Videos | ReverbNation[/]="…"]Lunchbox Symphonic | Stow, OH | Rock / Punk / Indie | Music, Lyrics, Songs, and Videos | ReverbNation[/]

here. knock yourself out.

Jeff Hayat Fri, 04/06/2012 - 19:27

Greetings...first post here.

I understand where you are coming from - to an extent. You shouldn't need to move your tracks away from each other. The only reason you should ever need to do that is if your timing is so good, you experience phase issues. Nobody's timing is that good. I guess I am not too clear on what you mean by the guitars "clashing" - what does "clashing" mean?

"Without the doubling, the rhythm guitar tracks sound too "dead center". It makes it very thin sounding."

Right - one guitar center will do that.

The part I am not clear on, is how it sounds correct with cans, but incorrect through speakers. I can't be sure what you are hearing, but this could be due to several things:

1) Your speakers are hooked up incorrectly, and are 180 degres out of phase. However, if that were the issue, it wouldn't only be the guitars that sounded funky - it would be everything. If you mute the guitars, does everything else that has a stereo image sound ok?

2) The speakers are hooked up properly, but one of them has an issue, such as a blown tweeter, improperly functioning woofer, as two possibilities. Then again, the last part of #1 would apply here as well.

3) There is something drastically wrong with your room, and the way sound is moving.

I see your link above. I will be happy to take a listen with cans and on my speakers, and see if I hear any wierdness from one to another. Please tell me which track gives the best example of what you are experiencing.


RemyRAD Fri, 04/06/2012 - 21:17

Really the problem that you are having is that both tracks of the guitar have the same sonic signature. You might not be hearing the phasing issue on your headphones but through speakers, you will be hearing certain anomalies from the rooms nodal structure. So, how are you recording your guitars? With a microphone on the amplifier? Microphones on an acoustic? A pickup on acoustic? A little more information would be helpful?

So for you, if you are utilizing a microphone on the amplifier, for the doubled part, you reposition that microphone differently, for the doubled part. Off-center, slightly further away, more towards the edge, etc.. That will help. If you are utilizing an acoustic guitar with a pickup, on the second pass, you plug the guitar into an amplifier and put a microphone on the amplifier for the double. Much of this is due to minute differences in time delay. I don't care what you think you're wrong. You're asking a question don't tell us what we already know. You obviously don't know it. We're not talking about enough time delay to make it obvious. We're talking about such a small amount of time delay it is changing the time signature.

Here is another for instance regarding doubling. I've produced quite a few commercial jingle musics for multimillion dollar advertising agency. These sessions are all done New York's style where we may have, say, 6 violins, violas, cellos. We would frequently double, triple or even quadruple the passes. Most morons would just record them numerous times over, the same as the first time. And that doesn't sound real. So if I had six musicians, I would set up two rows of chairs of six each. The microphones would stay put. After the first pass recording, I would have the musicians move to the next row back without changing the positioning of the microphones. This makes the instruments arrive at the microphones only microseconds later than the first pass. There would be no phasing, no cancellation and a much fuller effect would be had. That's because I think in time differentials. And my technique got me a job offer from Sir George Martin whom I turned down. Because I'm really an idiot. So don't listen to me.

I don't know nothin'
Mx. Remy Ann David

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soapfloats Sat, 04/07/2012 - 20:07

Remy hit the nail on the head, and I hope the OP is still around to read it.

CHANGE SOMETHING. Mic position, preamp, mic choice, amp, pickup style, etc.

Doubling can get messy (esp if you have a messy player), and the whole purpose of it is to record the same part w/ a slightly different sound.
It took me a while to figure this out. There's a difference between reading how to do something, having someone tell you how to do it, and do it yourself.

I'm still an amateur by professional standards, but a pro by amateur standards. Why?
Because I read as much as I could, talked to other engineers, but mostly... f*ed things up doing it myself until I got it right.