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-   -   Miking up close or futher away? (https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=218841)

Fichtezc 06-07-2011 03:18 PM

Miking up close or futher away?
 
What do you guys prefer?

I've found that I get a much more "natural" sound when I place the mics pretty far away. The dynamics balance out a bit and the guitar sounds more like it would if you were to hear it live at a quiet venue. But when I put them up close, around a foot away I get something like the huge sound heard on fingerstyle guitarists albums.

I'm not sure what I prefer yet.

Bob Womack 06-07-2011 03:39 PM

In many cases it is a trade-off: The closer you get the less room sound you get but the boomier and brighter the guitar sounds. The further away you go the more room response you get and the more natural the sound. The difficulty is usually with the recording environment. If you can tame the environment, you can move further away with the mics. Here's a tip: You can use either distance, depending upon your needs.

Examples:
1. I recorded a maple b/s sitka top guitar being strummed for an ensemble with the mics about 12" out from the neck/body joint and it was delicious once I rolled off a tiny bit o' bass.
2. I recorded a rosewood/sitka classical with mics at about 10" from the neck body joint, rolled off the bass and added some (really good) reverb and really impressed the concertmaster from the regional symphony with the sound.

Bon appetite!

Bob

rick-slo 06-07-2011 04:06 PM

I record stereo 14" to 30" out. Some record to good effect with several mikes, for example a pair in the near field and another pair out a few feet. If you have a nice recording space your mic'ing options multiply.

Fichtezc 06-07-2011 04:33 PM

My rooms are all pretty bad which is why I always mic around 10'' away. I'm heading to my friend's college tonight to record her on piano and I'm gonna mess around in their rooms. I'll upload something I just did in my bedroom at home so you can hear the room. The mics were a good 3 or 4 feet out.
http://soundcloud.com/fichtezc/room-mic-spaced-pair-sd
The playing is rough but I was just messing around with the miking.


What if I wanted to get a sound like, say, Antoine Dufour. How would I go about that? I have a LD condenser and two SDs and an Anthem pickup. In about 2 weeks I'll have a firestudio so I can mix more than just 2 channels but for now I'm stuck with two.

Fran Guidry 06-07-2011 05:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Fichtezc (Post 2643971)
...
What if I wanted to get a sound like, say, Antoine Dufour. How would I go about that? ...

Close mic, mix expertly with excellent reverb, play with spectacular control of dynamics and tone, and repeat nearly every phrase.

Fran

The Colonel 06-07-2011 05:30 PM

I listened to your clip: I agree you need to either close mic or find a room that has good natural reverb.

Steve Berger 06-07-2011 05:51 PM

I place my Rode NT4 stereo mic about 6" away from the 14th/15th fret of my acoustics guitars and have been very pleased with the recorded tone I'm getting. I record dry, mix in a touch of reverb and I'm all set.

The Colonel 06-07-2011 06:42 PM

What Steve said. I record the same way. You can check my "dry" sound by listening to the Blackbird cover I posted in Show and Tell as a sound test for the new Eastman.

corbetta 06-07-2011 06:49 PM

In my personal experience, nothing beats far-micing in a great room. To me it just sounds more natural, more exciting, and—most importantly—more forgiving. By that I mean that the unavoidable squeaks and clicks (to some degree an inherent product of playing the guitar) don't get picked up and brought to the forefront quite as much.

I understand that great-sounding room are not easy to come by, but I really think it's something that everyone should try, if only for fun, at some point.

moon 06-07-2011 07:32 PM

If you're recording a riff on the bass strings, coming in close for a little bit of proximity effect can help add some depth if the guitar is lacking.

Ty Ford 06-08-2011 12:28 AM

You have the instrument, the room and the mic(s) the preamp(s) and the A/D converter(s).

The further away the mics are from the instrument, the more room you hear and the more gain you need to record and the more mic selfnoise you hear.

I like my space. It's tight but not dead. I like the reverbs I have better. Although SPL makes a De-Verb plugin, I'd rather record a little dry and add reverb if needed. I think too many people get entranced by reverb (however they get it) and overdo it. Your mileage will vary ALL over the road.

Regards,

Ty Ford

Fichtezc 06-08-2011 10:04 AM

Yeah, I figured Dufour miked up close. I'm probably going to focus on doing that until I can get myself a good room. How would a concert hall be for a room out of curiosity? I'm going to have access to one in a week or so. Maybe it depends on the actual room?

To Steve, when you put them so close, are they both at the 14th/15th? Like XY? Or do you have one on the body. I've never gotten good results with an XY set up on a guitar. Also, how much string noise do you get?

To the Colonel, I'll check it out after I write this! Thanks.

To Corbetta, can you show me some recordings that are miked this way out of curiosity? I would like to hear some because all I usually hear is the close miked fingerstyle stuff.

To Ty, yeah, my pres are actually pretty **** loud when I crank them, even with quiet mics. I'm hoping once I get my firestudio they'll be a little quieter. Still doesn't solve the room issue however.
Can I hear some of your recordings in your space too?

Ty Ford 06-08-2011 10:22 AM

Hey go to https://public.me.com/tyreeford

and look in the Audio folder for samples recorded here in my studio.

Regards,

Ty

Steve Berger 06-08-2011 11:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Fichtezc (Post 2644688)
Yeah, I figured Dufour miked up close. I'm probably going to focus on doing that until I can get myself a good room. How would a concert hall be for a room out of curiosity? I'm going to have access to one in a week or so. Maybe it depends on the actual room?

To Steve, when you put them so close, are they both at the 14th/15th? Like XY? Or do you have one on the body. I've never gotten good results with an XY set up on a guitar. Also, how much string noise do you get?

To the Colonel, I'll check it out after I write this! Thanks.

To Corbetta, can you show me some recordings that are miked this way out of curiosity? I would like to hear some because all I usually hear is the close miked fingerstyle stuff.
To Ty, yeah, my pres are actually pretty **** loud when I crank them, even

with quiet mics. I'm hoping once I get my firestudio they'll be a little quieter. Still doesn't solve the room issue however.
Can I hear some of your recordings in your space too?

I'm not certain what you mean. The Rode NT4 is a single stereo XY mic. I have one mic head aimed towards the soundhole at an angle and the other mic head aimed down the neck at an angle towards the headstock.

And yes you absolutely run the risk of picking up all sorts of noise from your fingers or pick coming into contact with the strings so it really forces you into playing as cleanly as you can. In my case, if I don't have a song absolutely nailed and I still want to record it . . . then I use my Zoom H2 which is much more forgiving of ambient noise than my Rode NT4 / Apogee Duet setup.

Fichtezc 06-08-2011 12:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Steve Berger (Post 2644830)
I'm not certain what you mean. The Rode NT4 is a single stereo XY mic. I have one mic head aimed towards the soundhole at an angle and the other mic head aimed down the neck at an angle towards the headstock.

And yes you absolutely run the risk of picking up all sorts of noise from your fingers or pick coming into contact with the strings so it really forces you into playing as cleanly as you can. In my case, if I don't have a song absolutely nailed and I still want to record it . . . then I use my Zoom H2 which is much more forgiving of ambient noise than my Rode NT4 / Apogee Duet setup.


Oh wow, coulda sword you said NT-5. Sorry! Yeah now I understand.

I think another part of my problem recording up close is that I use so much percussion. I have pretty/actually really good control over my percussion dynamics but up close, even the lightest tap booms on the mic pointing at the body but when I do the same thing with room mics it's barely audible. I'll just need to work on finding the happy medium.

And I think I just bit my tongue talking about XY. I did it with my friend last night who was singing while I played and I was really pleased with the sound of my guitar. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=chdvOk89UPg


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