Suggestions for a Thick Metal Guitar tone

Discussion in 'Guitars' started by pleasantbullet, Jan 3, 2007.

  1. Hi, Im new to the site, and recording in general.

    I have sonar 6.0. A tone port line 6 device, which i think works great for what i need to accomplish. I dont like any of the presets it has.. because it still doesn't like the real thing. So I've made the decision to MIic My peavey 5150 2.

    I have an SM57 mic, and a gibson SG std. with an emg-85 in the bridge.

    Im looking for suggestions for Amp settings, Volumes, and Mic positioning.
    I would like to get a nice smooth, thick shredding guitar tone. I've gone through a few things so far, but i find the guitar sounds distant, and im having trouble getting a balanced tone.

    SHould I be spending time with EQ effects in Sonar, or should i concentrate on getting the best tone from the amp first?

    I know this is a wide topic.. and there are many variables.
    Any suggestions the lot of you may have, Im eager to hear.
  2. SuprSpy79

    SuprSpy79 Active Member

    Jan 3, 2007
    If you want more prescene try boosting the mids a little bit. Also how is the cabinet miced?
  3. I have my cabinet miced on the outer edge of the pspeaker, at a 45 degree angle towards the center. an inch from the grill.

    It gives me an alright sound, but I find its not as clear as i'd like it.
    I also tried mic'ing it straight on, but i found it was too 'fizzy'.

    My problem is, I'll mess with my amp, and get the desired sound i want.
    But when I mic it, it doesn't sound the way i want it to sound when it comes through.
  4. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    Feb 23, 2005
    How's the room you're in? This will have a LOT to do with your sound,too.
    As you have probably found, pointing the mic towards the center of the cone will aggravate the "fizzy" issue. So will boosting the Presence control.
    Try aiming the 57 at the outside rim of the speaker that you think sounds best, maybe point inward a LTTLE bit, but keep it away from the damned center. Yu said something about "clarity", but that is a bit confusing when you're trying to overdrive the crap outta the amp. How do you set the "Resonance" control? Up helps the "big fat thick" factor, but too much will yield muddiness.
    Frankly, as big a vintage tube amp nut/collector that I am, unless you can really CRANK the Peawee (sorry, I used to work for him!) in a decent room, I'd give the Port6 another go at it. Your neighbors will thank you, too.
  5. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Member

    Sep 26, 2005
    There is also a possibility that you are experiencing a polarity or phase reversal of your recorded guitar sound when played back? That is to say, somewhere within your signal chain something is inverting phase of your guitar track and/or the entire ensemble? This could adversely affect the guitars tonal characteristics when played back. If the cones are sucking in, instead of pushing out, the sound will suck, quite literally. An unbelievable and actually common problem in many control rooms and people blame it on the equipment instead of listening to their ears.

    What's the fix you ask? You can either trying inverting the recorded file. Or , press the phase button on the microphone preamp when tracking? You might even want to flip speaker wiring polarity?

    It sounds to me you're not getting the fat in phase signal that you are expecting? Now if you are confused about the term polarity and phase? They are the same but different. Phase is usually referred to on the in going side, when talking about microphones and such. And polarity usually refers to the outbound side, where if you don't have the right polarity on the speakers they are considered out of phase. They both signify a reversal of electrical connections. Phase and polarity issues, when dealing with the electrical or acoustical variety can be both a good and a bad thing when used knowledgeably and a problem where an intimate knowledge of equipment is unknown? I will tell you I get my biggest electric guitar sounds on smaller single speaker cabinets. There is this factor of time smear when there is more than 1 speaker in the Cabinet.

    It's not your fault. We know you didn't mean to kill that little speaker track. You're only trying to tighten the cord around its little speaker neck.

    Ms. Remy Ann David
  6. Scoobie

    Scoobie Active Member

    Sep 6, 2006
    What kind of a mic pre are you using................
    You just said you was using Sonar and had a 57.

    Your soundcard(interface, A/D converter) has alot to do with your sound also.

    With a 57 close mic'in a 5150 you should be able to produce good tracks.

  7. MadTiger3000

    MadTiger3000 Active Member

    Nov 16, 2004
    You have shed some light yet again. NEVER thought of it that way, but it is so simple when you present it.
  8. So here is what i have come to.

    I was unhappy with the results I got with the single tracks i recorded with the mic.

    I tested micing the speaker in various directions. My favourite sound, came from positioning the mic 3" from the center, and Straight, not angled. I tried putting the mic on the edge of the speaker and cocking it 30 degress, but i found It lacked deffinition, but the Sound was fairly 'big' which was nice to hear.

    After,, I wasn't completely happy with the track, it just lacked that 'Umph'.
    So what i did was this.

    On the LEAD channel on my 5150 2. I configured it for my 'sound' that shredding metall whatever sound. I went easy on the pre, and the presence so i wouldnt' pick up and fizz.

    Then, i went to the Rythm Channel, and I cranked the pre all of the way. and put the post up to the same level as the lead channel so they were at the same volume pretty much.

    Then, bascially. I recorded my song, (2 guitar parts in total) with the LEAD setting. And then I went back and changed the amp to the Cruch setting, and I recorded the song, Both parts exactly again.

    I panned the two Crunch channels so that one was left, and one was on the right. Then I panned the Lead channels so that the left guitar was around 20%, and the right 20%.

    The difference from just single tracks.. to the Doubled Tracks. Is crazy.
    When you mix the channels, My sound Became nice and Warm, and Thick!

    I added a bit of an EQ on Each Guitar track to Accent some of the highs on the Crunch Tracks, and added a some needed Mid range on the lead channel.

    I did this because I probably could spend a bit more time on my sound coming from the amp. But Im quite Happy with the sound.

    since i work in my bedroom, I cant crank the volume on my amp, because it would serisouly piss everyone off. So i only had the Post up to 1 on my amp for both settings!

    and oddly enough, by just turning up the gain in the 5 band fxEQ inside Sonar. It brought the volume up quite nicely with no distortion or clipping.
    I've been comparing my demo song out with a few other bands like Killswitch engage and lamb of god, and i think the volume levels compare nicely to those bands.

    I think with a few more tweaks and some quality time spent on Mixing.
    My final Product will have a crushing and brutal sound. comparable to a lot of Proffessional Records out there. Not to be cocky or anything, really. I just foudn that this is a great , easy , and cheap way to get a great thick metal Guitar tone that i enjoy listening to.

    Again, All i use, is a an SG with an EMG-85 in the bridge, a Peavey 5150 2, an SM57, the line 6 toneport module. and Sonar 6.0.

    If you have the desire to hear the Guitar tone I've got. Maybe someone could show me how to upload a song on this site, or where to host a song from. then i could put it up for download.

    either that, or just email me at

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