In Your Face Guitar Sound

Discussion in 'Guitars' started by JustinFFG, Nov 23, 2004.

  1. JustinFFG

    JustinFFG Guest

    Hello All

    I am new to this forum as a member but I have been ghosting for some time now. There seems to be quite a bit of experience and knowledge on this site as compared to a lot of the other forums that I have visited. I look forward to learning from everyone here.

    My question is about guitar recording. I have been recording for a lot of rock/metal/hardcore projects and have been pretty satisfied with my results. The one area however that I feel that I am lacking in is my guitars. I can't seem to get them to sound as clear and "in your face" as the guitars I have heard on recordings by Lamb Of God, Atreyu, Velvet Revolver, etc. Does anyone have any suggestions to help me out. Just to give you some background, I am recording a Randall SC100 2X12 with Celestions. I have a collection of 57s, SP C1s, Audix D series drum mics, and some Oktava MC012s and the preamp I am using is the ART tube pre. Any and all help is greatly appreciated.
  2. gnarr

    gnarr Guest


    My setup for hardcore/metal is usually like this

    One SM57 on axis with a speaker cone. I use headphones and search for the place where the highest hiss is when the amp is idle.
    than i place another SM57 about 45° off axis and also at the highest hiss point.
    and for the last i place a Beta 52 (bassdrum mic) behind the amp-box (to pick up the "boom" sound of palm-mutes) and put it out of phase (if you don't have a phase shifter, you can alway put the mic to point away form the amp box, but that will probably not sound as well.

    be sure that all mics are equally distanced from the source, so there won't be any phaseout of mid frequencys

    another thing. you should use way less distortion on the guitars than "feels right". that will end up inn cleaner and harder sound. you should also record with the rather low bass and high mids on the amp, and than eq the mix on your computer.

    For the "throwdown" sound, i also eq the guitar with low highs, mid mids and high bass in the mixing process.
  3. inLoco

    inLoco Active Member

    Jul 25, 2004
    justin if you like velvet revolver's sound you need a lot of bucks! there's an eq magazine issue that they explain the recorded sounds!
    slash uses mainly 3 amps combined! his slash marshall, other marshall, jcm (don't remember now the number) and a vox ac30
    they miked the amps close with shure sm57 at 45º
    this site has the info on equipment and you can see dave's and slash's amp settings...
    preamps were neve 1073 which no away you can emulate with the cheap art pre...
    but if you have good guitars and amps you can get a very good sound! just work hard!
    the thing i recommend to you is the following:
    mic the amp with all those mics and take a picture of it! play and record and then see the result individualy (beware phase issues if you want more than one mic...)
    check a lot of ideias... you never know...
  4. Screws

    Screws Active Member

    Feb 16, 2001
    Home Page:
    I talked to Eric Rachel, producer, engineer of Every Time I Die about his guitar sounds, especially on the Hot Damn CD.

    He said he tracks each guitarist with two amps simultaneously. One is for distortion and one is for tone. He used a JCM800, a Mesa Dual Rectifier and a Peavey 5150, focusing on the Mesa for clearer tones and the Marshall and Peavey for crunch - go figger!

    Each amp feeds 4x12 cabinets facing away from each other and goboed to isolate them. Each cab is miked with a 57 and a 414 in omni. The 57 is dead center with one speaker while the 414 is off center. The 57 supplies its usual nasally mids with the 414 contributing whomp and fizz with a little room sound from being in omni.

    Each mike feeds a separate track so the mixer can blend as much clear guitar tone (to hear each note) with as much crunch as he likes - the best of both worlds.

    I've tried this tracking through 1272's and a Fatso using 57's, 421's and Sennheiser e609's along with an AKG C4000b and CAD E300 (no 414's here yet) and I've become the talk of all the local hardcore bands because of the vast improvement in my guitar sound.

    Thank you to Eric Rachel, who said, "I don't believe in trade secrets, I'll tell you anything you want to know."

    And boy, did he ever...
  5. JustinFFG

    JustinFFG Guest

    Damn...quick response! Thanks for the suggestions. I'm really freakin eager to head home and try them out now!

    Gnarr- That Throwdown sound is exactly the sound I am looking for, thanks!

    Screws- Thanks for going to the source. I love the sound on the new ETID disc.

    InLoco- Thanks for the reference. I have always loved Slash's guitar sound, even when I was just a wee metalhead in the 80's. I will definitely try and find that issue you mentioned.
  6. LittleDogAudio

    LittleDogAudio Active Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    Try taking a speaker DI output from your head (you have to use a DI Box that has a step down transformer, many do) and use this track mixed way below your mic'ed track.

    By itself the di track will sound shitty, but if you mix it right, it will bring the guitar very forward-sounding in the mix.

    Make sure to phase correct it, it will most certainly be out of phase with the mic.

    This works best with metal.

    My .02

  7. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Dec 10, 2001
    Pacific NW
    Either that or get a Carr Hammerhead and put it in a good sounding location in the room...mic it up,turn it on,grin like a banshee.

    it is without a doubt the easiest amp I've ever recorded...
  8. inLoco

    inLoco Active Member

    Jul 25, 2004
    u think so? gotta try that! i record my band's reharsals with our amps di to the mixer... the sound ain't that bad! it's without reverb and presence but it's ok!
    for metal that may work fine for the crunch sound...
  9. nandoph8

    nandoph8 Active Member

    Sep 6, 2004
    I just heard about a trick. Low cut guitars from 100 and below, which is understandable, but the trick is to hicut anything 2k and over. I guess this puts it in the mix better. Haven't tried it yet
  10. dustbro

    dustbro Guest

    Well... you're in luck because I worked on the new Lamb of God record.
    Usually, I'll use a combination of an SM57 and a Royer R122 thru neve 1073's and then 1176's.
    On the LOG record, just a single SM57 was used with a Fairchild (line amp converted to mic pre).
    On the Atreyu record, GGGarth used a combination of an SM57 on the cone and a MD421 off axis. Probably thru 1073's and then right to tape. Remember to take a lot of time and find the right placement for the microphone. An inch to the left or right can make or break your guitar sound.
    One thing to keep in mind is that you dont have to really crank up your amp either. Most microphoes just cant handle the spl. Try turning down the amp and let the proximity effect enhance your bottom end.
  11. dustbro

    dustbro Guest

    My Credits...
  12. J-MADD

    J-MADD Active Member

    Aug 19, 2004
    Home Page:
    Last night I recorded my guitar player. He uses a Gibson les paul into a mesa single rectifier with a marshall 1960 cab. This was recorded with 2 mics: an sm57 about 2 inches from the grill and and D112 as a room mic 3-4 foot away. These mics were put through the ISA 428 on "110" impedence setting. This signal was recorded onto my Korg 32xd at 24 bit 48khz. Sounded really nice and big. I didn't expect the D112 to work for a room mic, but it did real nice. In fact, I had tried the uls 414 as the room mic first and it sounded bad. Anyways just thought I would pass this along. justin
  13. luxeomni

    luxeomni Guest

    hey dust, any infos about the snare and kick sounds on the Atreyu records?
    maybe one of the "cleanest" produced album i ve hear this year.
  14. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Well-Known Member

    Oct 7, 2001
    Also, consider some double- or triple-tracking of the same part.

    Lately, I have been doing some triple-tracking on the first guitar part as follows:

    Track 1: Paned hard right (normal distortion, a bit less than a "live" sound)
    Track 2: Paned hard left normal distortion, a bit less than a "live" sound)
    Track 3: Much cleaner sound, paned centrally, different chord voicings, and then have it a bit lower in the mix than tracks 1 & 2

    Then I will record the "second" guitar part (if necessary) as a double-tracked part.

    This gives a very full and wide sound (i.e. *huge* guitars!).

    Each track needs to be recorded separately, don't try to copy-and-paste then delay one of the tracks, just record another pass.

    Some of the other tips above are also important...mic placement and choice, keep the distortion lower than you think you need to, keep the presence control out of the mix, boost the mids a bit more than normal, and don't slam with the lows as much as think you need to.
  15. inLoco

    inLoco Active Member

    Jul 25, 2004
    i really hate double tracking! the beautiful thing about guns n' roses and now velvet revolver is that they never doubled tracked! they could be doing the same riff (for instance paradise city) but when it came to the verse and chorus and so on izzy and slash were always doing their things... which is great to hear with phones cause you can really appreciate the underrated izzy stradlin as a guitarman! he really dominated the melodies, riffs and so on!
    i think double tracking gives an unatural sound! i like to hear different tones, different guitars within the song! not feel that the sound is big!

    as for the d112 with sm57 beware phase issues!
    check the sound in mono to see if there's a problem!
    i hear the c414 as close mic works well too... needs the right placement!
  16. J-MADD

    J-MADD Active Member

    Aug 19, 2004
    Home Page:
    Yeah the d112 had to be moved around a bit to get the right sound as did the sm 57. I haven't gone home and mixed them yet so I can't say that I will use both tracks, but they sounded killer last night in the headphones. I will probably pan the 2 tracks a little left and right to make a stereo image if I decide to keep both tracks. Worst case scenerio If I hear phase issues I just use 1 track. justin
  17. inLoco

    inLoco Active Member

    Jul 25, 2004
    ok but don't pan the tracks like that! first hear them centered and a bit loud to see if you have problems with phase! if you feel the sound oscilating don't pan the tracks! use just one! remember that for example many tv's, live PA's work in mono so you don't want to hear your great stereo track with major phase issues on a mono PA or tv
  18. J-MADD

    J-MADD Active Member

    Aug 19, 2004
    Home Page:
    Thanks inLoco. I will try that first.
  19. Hack

    Hack Active Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Little Rock, AR
    this is fun.. get a bunch of current cds with big guitar sounds by all the best mixers, and listen to them in mono. You will find that there are big killer guitars that dont change in mono and big killer guitars that do drastically drop in mono.

    I think the point is that I think sometimes what we consider phase problems can sound "cool", and sometimes it doesnt. But I always go for "cool" over correct.
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