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HELP. Im trying to get a heavy guitar tone!

Hey everyone. I have protools with a digi002, a PreSonus preamp, and SM57's. Whenever I record guitar its very weak sounding. Rightnow I have two mono channels of a guitar track panned hard left and two mono channels of a different guitar track panned right. Its just not thick sounding and real pure compared to the sounds I'm going for such as the guitar tones/sounds for bands such as sevendust, seether, shinedown. Many more. But Its just very weak sounding. Even since ive doubled it. So i dont know if it has to do with mastering gear but even so i feel like i should be able to get a thicker, heavier sound than i am now. Also i am using a dual rectifier with a mesa 4x12. Any help would be greatly greatly greatly appreciated. Thanks. -Ron


Pro Audio Guest Tue, 11/21/2006 - 17:41
hey. yea im actually tuned down to drop C so its definitly low enough as far as the tuning and as far as the sound coming from the amp. I actually do like the sound coming from the amp, it just seems like it goes into the protools session a lot weeker and with lack of low end with more of a treble and mid sound. When i use the eq II on protools it just doesnt seem to work for me. I have to admit. I dont know much on frequencies and Db and all the stuff that is involved with compressors and limiters and eq's but thats just as far as the technical end of it. I always see threads with people talking about them using this blank amount of freq and to ad this blank amount of Db and all this info that i wish i could learn more on. Is there any references you could recommend because maybe that could help me in my search for more tone out of the gear i have. But asides from that if any one has any more suggestions on achieving a better tone let me know. thank you so much everyone. -Ron

mark_van_j Tue, 11/21/2006 - 21:23
The trick is to use a combination of distortions. The bands you mentioned tend to use an overdrive, a distortion and the crunch of something like a mesa head. Then they record using at least 2 mics (one close and one room). I alsways record direct as well (if possible both pre effect and post) and I sometimes add my own amp simulators (guitar rig, amp farm, amplitube, Izotope Trash) to get the sound I really want. However the BEST sounding guitars were the ones recorded stright with a 57 close mik-ed. The reason is the guitarists had "their sound".

Go easy on the treble and bass. The guitar is MID frequencies, and those are the ones that you should be concentrating on. Treble has no tone, but only distortion artefacts, and bass covers the low mids.

Before you do anything though, proceeed to read this bible of recording heavy guitars:

Pro Audio Guest Wed, 11/22/2006 - 12:36
hey thanks very much for the info. im just having the worst phasing problems. My final outcome always sounds like the guitars in a tunnel. I just started messing with amplitube that i didnt even know came with my protools last year when i got it. The only thing with that is im getting this wierd sound that comes every few seconds. Its like a hiss then it cuts off. Does anyone know what that is and how i can get rid of it. Im sorry i cant explain it better. But its basically just this quick ssssssssssss sound then it stops for a 4-5 seconds then does it again. Also im frustrated because i love the bass tones and clean tones in amplitube but like the dist. guitars in sansamp better but for some reason i can only open up one sansamp plugin and when i try recording a second guitar track and opening it up again, my computer freezes like my cpu is just loaded. Sorry this is so jumbled but i really appreciate everyones help.

Pro Audio Guest Wed, 11/22/2006 - 13:11
A friend of mine has been in on the recording some stuff by members of Fear Factory. They use different cabinets during the process (Marshalls, Soldano), but the one similarity: Three mics roughly an inch off the grill, all spaced equidistantly (for phase alignment): an SM57, an MD421 and a Royer 121. They also back off their distortion a little (to alleviate some of the "fizz") and play them LOUD (to move as much air as possible).

Don't know if that'll help you, but I throw it to you anyway.

Pro Audio Guest Wed, 11/22/2006 - 20:09
But its basically just this quick ssssssssssss sound then it stops for a 4-5 seconds then does it again.

I've experienced that before with an expired free trial plug- in that was still in the strip.

Question for you though, how many times can you play the same thing over again? 10 times would give you something to work with if you used different amp settings (subtle).

Sometimes a dirty bass playing the same riff helps emmulate the sound your after.

Maybe just cheat and use a midi keyboard and back your guitar with bassy synth tones. Why not?

Many ways to get big fat guitar, with out the rest of the instruments involved big fat guitar is there all the time, put the rest of the instruments in and still have big fat guitar......