Mic'ing and mic pre's

Guitar Tricks Forum > Recording > Mic'ing and mic pre's

PRSplaya

Full Access

Joined: 09/19/02

Posts: 3941

While I enjoy using my PODxt for recording simply for convenience and good sound, I still like to physically mic my amps. Only problem is, I can never get it to sound quite like I want. I've tried many different mic placements, and a lot of different settings on my amps, but to no aveal(sp?). Do any of you know of a site that goes into detail about micing and setting up an amp for micing? Also, would using a mic preamp help? I'm using an SM57 btw.
Tonja Renee's personal instructor

>HERE'S WHERE I AM NOW<

#1

While I enjoy using my PODxt for recording simply for convenience and good sound, I still like to physically mic my amps. Only problem is, I can never get it to sound quite like I want. I've tried many different mic placements, and a lot of different settings on my amps, but to no aveal(sp?). Do any of you know of a site that goes into detail about micing and setting up an amp for micing? Also, would using a mic preamp help? I'm using an SM57 btw.
Tonja Renee's personal instructor

>HERE'S WHERE I AM NOW<

Dr_simon

Guitar Tricks Instructor

Joined: 07/06/02

Posts: 5021

A good pre will make all the difference.

I have just dropped the thick end of 2K on an Avalon Vt373sp, for very good reason !

Even a dirt cheap Behringer channel strip (50 bucks off eBay) will be a massive improvement on your sound card. Even better if it can interface with your computer digitally though this will also depend on how good other A/D converters that you may have are. At the moment Im using MOTU 282 mk IIs (I have 2 of 'em which gives me 40 separate channels (16 being via Adat). I have to use the pres on the desk for 10 of 'em but that is not as biggy as they are dedicated drum channels.

In terms of placement there should be a sweet spot found by placing a mic (like an SM57) into the cone. If you keep the mic towards the top left of the cone right on the grill cloth you shouldn't be too far away.

You might also want to try a large diaphragm condenser, though you will have to watch you volume levels as it is possible to overload the capsule at high SPL. I have just got a AKG C414 BXLII for vox /guitar. Yummy ! However something like a Shure KMS series will also do a good job.
If you don't want to commit that much cash there are always the Behringer condensers. They do a reasonable impersonation and are good for getting a feel for what is possible.
My instructors page and www.studiotrax.net for all things recording.
my toons Brought to you by Dr BadGAS

#2

A good pre will make all the difference.

I have just dropped the thick end of 2K on an Avalon Vt373sp, for very good reason !

Even a dirt cheap Behringer channel strip (50 bucks off eBay) will be a massive improvement on your sound card. Even better if it can interface with your computer digitally though this will also depend on how good other A/D converters that you may have are. At the moment Im using MOTU 282 mk IIs (I have 2 of 'em which gives me 40 separate channels (16 being via Adat). I have to use the pres on the desk for 10 of 'em but that is not as biggy as they are dedicated drum channels.

In terms of placement there should be a sweet spot found by placing a mic (like an SM57) into the cone. If you keep the mic towards the top left of the cone right on the grill cloth you shouldn't be too far away.

You might also want to try a large diaphragm condenser, though you will have to watch you volume levels as it is possible to overload the capsule at high SPL. I have just got a AKG C414 BXLII for vox /guitar. Yummy ! However something like a Shure KMS series will also do a good job.
If you don't want to commit that much cash there are always the Behringer condensers. They do a reasonable impersonation and are good for getting a feel for what is possible.
My instructors page and www.studiotrax.net for all things recording.
my toons Brought to you by Dr BadGAS

hbkolb

Whats an Yngwie??

Joined: 02/17/05

Posts: 184

Pre Amps and Mics

If I rant I apologize ahead of time. As far as placement, it really depends on what sound your looking for, a good rule to follow is the closer the mic to the cabinet the more "in your face" it will be. The farther away you get, the sound gets airy. For placement on the speaker, each speaker will have a sweet spot, it really takes patience to find it. Its nice if you have someone to help you by moving the mic an inch at a time and changing the angle towards the cone.

Here are a few examples of sessions I have done. For a death metal band I put the mic about 3 inches away at a 45 degree angle to the cone of the speaker and to control the low end to make it really punch, I put the cabinet facing a corner, adjusting the distance to the corner really helped to add the controlled low end that I needed. For a blues session, I used a long narrow hallway, put a Shure 57 right on the speaker for presence. (3 in away ) but then I had a Cad 100 about 9 feet away picking up the natural reverb of the room. If the client wanted the sound a little more in your face then I just backed off the Cad 100 fader.

Another nice technique is to experiment with panning of the different tracks, just becareful of phase issues.

As far as mics, the Shure 57 is always a good starting point, Cad E100, M147 Neuman, and Beyerdynamic M88 are all great choices, but there are so many.

As far as mic pres, you will just not believe the difference a good mic pre will make, the pres on a mackie board or behringer board may seem ok until you get your hands on a nicer board, if you want just a nice preamp, Avalon is prosumer but better than most at that price range. I dont like presonas.

again sorry to babble.... hope this helps
Click here to listen to some of my stuff

#3

Pre Amps and Mics

If I rant I apologize ahead of time. As far as placement, it really depends on what sound your looking for, a good rule to follow is the closer the mic to the cabinet the more "in your face" it will be. The farther away you get, the sound gets airy. For placement on the speaker, each speaker will have a sweet spot, it really takes patience to find it. Its nice if you have someone to help you by moving the mic an inch at a time and changing the angle towards the cone.

Here are a few examples of sessions I have done. For a death metal band I put the mic about 3 inches away at a 45 degree angle to the cone of the speaker and to control the low end to make it really punch, I put the cabinet facing a corner, adjusting the distance to the corner really helped to add the controlled low end that I needed. For a blues session, I used a long narrow hallway, put a Shure 57 right on the speaker for presence. (3 in away ) but then I had a Cad 100 about 9 feet away picking up the natural reverb of the room. If the client wanted the sound a little more in your face then I just backed off the Cad 100 fader.

Another nice technique is to experiment with panning of the different tracks, just becareful of phase issues.

As far as mics, the Shure 57 is always a good starting point, Cad E100, M147 Neuman, and Beyerdynamic M88 are all great choices, but there are so many.

As far as mic pres, you will just not believe the difference a good mic pre will make, the pres on a mackie board or behringer board may seem ok until you get your hands on a nicer board, if you want just a nice preamp, Avalon is prosumer but better than most at that price range. I dont like presonas.

again sorry to babble.... hope this helps
Click here to listen to some of my stuff

hbkolb

Whats an Yngwie??

Joined: 02/17/05

Posts: 184

Sorry Doc

My post sounds like yours, I must of been typing when you posted :-P
he he
Click here to listen to some of my stuff

#4

Sorry Doc

My post sounds like yours, I must of been typing when you posted :-P
he he
Click here to listen to some of my stuff

Dr_simon

Guitar Tricks Instructor

Joined: 07/06/02

Posts: 5021

An M147 !! I should think so !!

Yummmy yumm yum !!

I think I may have to go to the bathroom !!

Have you tried there "Solution D"'s ?

They look really nice though I have yet to get my grubby little paws on one !

That or a Focusrite liquid channel and a U87 !
My instructors page and www.studiotrax.net for all things recording.
my toons Brought to you by Dr BadGAS

#5

An M147 !! I should think so !!

Yummmy yumm yum !!

I think I may have to go to the bathroom !!

Have you tried there "Solution D"'s ?

They look really nice though I have yet to get my grubby little paws on one !

That or a Focusrite liquid channel and a U87 !
My instructors page and www.studiotrax.net for all things recording.
my toons Brought to you by Dr BadGAS

PRSplaya

Full Access

Joined: 09/19/02

Posts: 3941

Thanks for the advice Doc! I'll defanately look into getting a mic pre, plus spend more time with mic placement. I think part of my problem's are the speakers. When playing clean, my classic 50 (peavey blue marvell speakers) records very well, but when dirty it leaves a lot to be desired. I think it's because they break up too easily. To me, the speakers in my Marshall cab sound pretty good in a live situation, but can be pretty harsh when recording. They're the G12T-75's which are pretty bright speakers and can get kind of "fizzy" when recording. I believe you have the same cab I do (1960a) don't you? You don't have any unprocessed/uneq'ed sound clips that you could send to me of it being miced do you? I'd love to have something to compair my recordings with even though our head's are quite different, the cab should add a similar characteristic. Anyway, I appreciate all the help!
Tonja Renee's personal instructor

>HERE'S WHERE I AM NOW<

#6

Thanks for the advice Doc! I'll defanately look into getting a mic pre, plus spend more time with mic placement. I think part of my problem's are the speakers. When playing clean, my classic 50 (peavey blue marvell speakers) records very well, but when dirty it leaves a lot to be desired. I think it's because they break up too easily. To me, the speakers in my Marshall cab sound pretty good in a live situation, but can be pretty harsh when recording. They're the G12T-75's which are pretty bright speakers and can get kind of "fizzy" when recording. I believe you have the same cab I do (1960a) don't you? You don't have any unprocessed/uneq'ed sound clips that you could send to me of it being miced do you? I'd love to have something to compair my recordings with even though our head's are quite different, the cab should add a similar characteristic. Anyway, I appreciate all the help!
Tonja Renee's personal instructor

>HERE'S WHERE I AM NOW<

hbkolb

Whats an Yngwie??

Joined: 02/17/05

Posts: 184

U 87

I have been fortunate enough to hold one and rub it in a counterclockwise fashion but didnt bother mentioning that due to cost. What a great great mic. Now the focusrite....... not a fan. I had a Control 24 with Platinum Pres and those were pretty good but for the money and in the prosumer range I prefer Avalon. Have you ever used a U5 to record bass direct?? Getty Lee used one live, best bass sounds I have ever gotten. Now as a disclaimer, bass must have nice pickups.
Click here to listen to some of my stuff

#7

U 87

I have been fortunate enough to hold one and rub it in a counterclockwise fashion but didnt bother mentioning that due to cost. What a great great mic. Now the focusrite....... not a fan. I had a Control 24 with Platinum Pres and those were pretty good but for the money and in the prosumer range I prefer Avalon. Have you ever used a U5 to record bass direct?? Getty Lee used one live, best bass sounds I have ever gotten. Now as a disclaimer, bass must have nice pickups.
Click here to listen to some of my stuff

hbkolb

Whats an Yngwie??

Joined: 02/17/05

Posts: 184

Distortion

Something to keep in mind is when you are recording a distorted guitar sound, actually record it with about 1/3 less distortion than what you play with, it will help keep the low end tight. This really works well for heavier music.
Click here to listen to some of my stuff

#8

Distortion

Something to keep in mind is when you are recording a distorted guitar sound, actually record it with about 1/3 less distortion than what you play with, it will help keep the low end tight. This really works well for heavier music.
Click here to listen to some of my stuff

Dr_simon

Guitar Tricks Instructor

Joined: 07/06/02

Posts: 5021

Eric, hang fire until weekend after next and Ill send you some clean and dirty wav files of Mr Marshall though a bunch of Mics / pres.

What would combos would you like, I have the following on hand:

Shure KMS44, SM57, SM58s, PG81s and an AKG C414

via :

Peavey RQ Desk pres,
Avalon Vt737sp (need to burn the tube in still!)
Focusrite Platinum Voice master pro
MOTU 828 mk ii pres

however I have rewire everything before I have a chance to do anymore recording as I have a bunch of kit turning up at the end of the week.

let me know what you would like !

Id go with the AKG through the Avalon and an SM57 through the desk as a comparison both into the MOTU 828 for A/D conversion. I will go 24/96 so I will keep 'em short !

How does that sound ?
My instructors page and www.studiotrax.net for all things recording.
my toons Brought to you by Dr BadGAS

#9

Eric, hang fire until weekend after next and Ill send you some clean and dirty wav files of Mr Marshall though a bunch of Mics / pres.

What would combos would you like, I have the following on hand:

Shure KMS44, SM57, SM58s, PG81s and an AKG C414

via :

Peavey RQ Desk pres,
Avalon Vt737sp (need to burn the tube in still!)
Focusrite Platinum Voice master pro
MOTU 828 mk ii pres

however I have rewire everything before I have a chance to do anymore recording as I have a bunch of kit turning up at the end of the week.

let me know what you would like !

Id go with the AKG through the Avalon and an SM57 through the desk as a comparison both into the MOTU 828 for A/D conversion. I will go 24/96 so I will keep 'em short !

How does that sound ?
My instructors page and www.studiotrax.net for all things recording.
my toons Brought to you by Dr BadGAS