Acoustic Guitar Help

Discussion in 'Guitars' started by MrJulius, Feb 24, 2009.

  1. MrJulius

    MrJulius Guest


    Here is the link to the song,

    SoundClick artist: MrJulius - page with MP3 music downloads

    The vocals in the beginning are only for reference.

    I have gotten the lead and vocals sounding great (IMHO) but the rhythm guitar just isn't clear.

    I want those clear treble highs. Is there anything I can do EQ wise to bring them out more?

    Right now I am simply micing the guitar by micing an amp with an SM57.

    The room I am in is ok, but I've been having trouble (worse sound than what I posted) when directly micing the guitar.

    My mic cabinet consist of

    1 SM57
    1 SM58
    2 AT2020's

    I'm using a presonus 2626 and reaper. I have some fairly nice plugs (thank you going out of business local studio).

    So yeah, any advice?
  2. Space

    Space Well-Known Member

    Jun 26, 2007
    I like the sound of my acoustic guitars. So much so that I mic the guitar and not the amp.

    I realize everyone has a different idea when it comes to their sound. But acoustic instruments sound better, to me, when the instrument becomes the focus of the mic and not the colored sound that the amp produces.

    Surely this isn't what you wanted, but at wits end, it is always an option.
  3. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    Oct 31, 2005
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    SoundClick artist: MrJulius

    I would mic the guitar and the cab. I like the slightly distorted sound. I think it adds a nice character. Keep the mic a reasonable distance from the guitar body. Maybe as far as 3 feet away. Try the 57 first. You may get a better signal from the AT2020 but you may get a nicer tone from the 57. You're going to want to keep the amp gobo'd or in another room if you want any sort of separation though. Mix the two to taste.
  4. Myke

    Myke Guest

    How are you miking the guitar? Coincident pair? Just a single mike?

    I would start with a coincident pair about 15 inches away, with one mike pointing toward the sound hole and the other toward the 12th fret...

    But maybe you've already done that... mix the the mike pointed at the fretboard louder, and you might try separating the mikes and putting that one closer than the other one.
  5. MrJulius

    MrJulius Guest

    Ok, next tracking session I'll try these suggestions. Is there anything EQ wise I should try?
  6. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    Apr 4, 2006
    Blacksburg, VA
    It's not completely clear to me what you are asking for here. Are you looking to add a little sparkle from the direct acoustic sound to the sound of the recorded cabinet? Or are you looking for basic advice on how to mic the guitar so you can use only that sound?

    Some basic comments for either direction:

    You have gotten some suggestions on mic position here. There are a ton more in the archives. Spend some time reading those, but more time experimenting. Do't forget how much position in the room matters.

    On mic selection: I like the sound of an acoustic miced by a 57. Use it live all the time. But when you talk about "clear treble highs" I'm guessing that a 57 is not the sound in your head. A 57 has a nice little mid range bump and then rolls off the highs. It's a nice curve for a lot of things, but it certainly doesn't add "sparkle." Also the bump might just be in the place where your piezo "quacks," so a piezo and a 57 might be a bad combination.

    So I guess I would experiment more with the 2020. Start out with one mic. But since you have a pair, you can use both as either a coincident or spaced pair.

    You might have to get another mic to get the exact sound in your head. But its not worth getting another mic before you can get a good sound out of what you have. You won't get a great sound with a better mic until you can get a good sound with what you have.
  7. MrJulius

    MrJulius Guest

    Cool deal, thanks for the help. I'll post my next attempts.
  8. droc8705

    droc8705 Active Member

    Jan 18, 2007
    Orlando, FL
    Excellent words of wisdom.

  9. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    Apr 4, 2006
    Blacksburg, VA
    Here is an exercise. Take a short passage of the type of strumming you are trying to work with - 10 seconds or so. Loop it so that it plays back repeatedly. Put a single band parametric Eq on it. Turn your monitors down. Take the eq with a 6 dB boost and a somewhat narrow q. Sweep it very slowly from 100 Hz to 20 kHz. Take note of the frequencies where you noted the biggest change. (You can turn your monitors back up to a comfortable level where the volume was loudest.) Now do the same thing with a 6 dB cut. Repeat with +-3dB. I think you will find this helps a lot.
  10. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Member

    Sep 26, 2005
    Dude everything of yours is not stereo. It's mono. There is no left, right space of any kind. You are most definitely doing something wrong except that your miking is very right as in correct. Now you just have to learn how to use your software to create stereo. Both channels moving doesn't mean stereo it means dual mono i.e. the same thing in both channels equally which is mono coming out of two speakers. Something's not Kosher.

    I just had a great corned beef and terrific pickles
    Ms. Remy Ann David
  11. mattcalgary

    mattcalgary Guest

    Would it matter if I'm using two different models of mics to record acoustic? Right now, I only have a 57 but want to pick up a 58 as well. Should I be using two 57's or would the 57/58 combo just produce a different sound?
  12. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    Apr 4, 2006
    Blacksburg, VA
    The most important application of balanced pairs of microphones is getting an accurate stereo picture of a large ensemble like a choir or orchestra. When recording acoustic guitar a lot of people use two mics in an asymmetric position (e.g. one pointing at the bridge, one at the twelfth fret). You could use completely different kinds of mics for this.

    A 58 is a logical second mic for you and would probably work well for this. To make a 58 sound even more like a 57 you simply unscrew the round pop filter. This leaves the capsule vulnerable, so you may not want to do it if your guitarist plays with a drumstick. (The two mics use the same capsule. The windscreen of the 58 makes a minor difference in the sound.)

Share This Page