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Old 11-26-2019, 02:31 PM
Lkristians Lkristians is offline
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Default adding a second mic

I'm currently using an AT2020 with a personas usb 96. I'd like to start using a second mic for playing/singing simultaneously as well as recording in stereo. My question: Purchase a second AT2020 for "consistency" or upgrade the second one to at 2035. Does the upgrade outweigh the advantage sameness? (Is "sameness" even a word?!)
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Old 11-26-2019, 04:34 PM
keith.rogers keith.rogers is offline
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I have probably only had the same make/model mic on my guitar and vocal once or twice, and that was when the only mics I had were two Beta 57as.

I would get the best mic you can afford that improves either your vocal track or guitar track (or both!), recognizing there will be a lot of bleed in both. This generally isn't a problem, though if you get into any plugins that do time shifting, like trying to add chorus to the guitar track, you'll find out quickly it probably isn't going to work very well.

Similarly, for stereo, if you mean two mics on your guitar, I wouldn't worry much. You will generally not be panning those wide, so differences in the mics can generally be managed in the mix very easily. I sometimes record with an AKG LDC and an AT SDC on the guitar. No big deal.

And, if you want to record something big, like a chorus or large ensemble, these two could be used there.

Digression - Where I get a little concerned about using different mics for a wide spread stereo mix is if it's a small source and the mics are very different.
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Old 11-27-2019, 08:08 AM
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I've tried 2-mic recording with a variety of different mics, and except for using something simple like a Shure 57 or 58 as the 2nd mic, could hear very little tonal difference in the two tracks except via mic placement. I even tried some 'side by side' experiments with some very cheap condensors and the tonal differences were minimal.
So, like Keith says, get the best mic you can afford.
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Old 11-27-2019, 08:39 AM
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Default Thank you, Keith and Mike!

Thanks, Keith and Mike, for your counsel.
Best,
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Old 11-27-2019, 08:54 AM
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if playing and singing at the same time it would be beneficial if you have the option for a figure eight pattern. By using the null Point you'll be able to get better separation. With that said there are folks with much more experience than me to help up you decide which mic would work better.
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Old 11-27-2019, 09:03 AM
keith.rogers keith.rogers is offline
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Originally Posted by Mbroady View Post
if playing and singing at the same time it would be beneficial if you have the option for a figure eight pattern. By using the null Point you'll be able to get better separation. With that said there are folks with much more experience than me to help up you decide which mic would work better.
Yes, but you need two of those (1 ea vocal and guitar), and it must be a big or very well treated room to keep the back side from adding too much reflected content. For me, it gets too fiddly. If it's that important (i.e., bleed reduction), I just track separately. (Admittedly, I am not a patient person, and have not really worked on this - I like leaving my stuff just set up.)
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Old 11-27-2019, 09:14 AM
jim1960 jim1960 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lkristians View Post
I'm currently using an AT2020 with a personas usb 96. I'd like to start using a second mic for playing/singing simultaneously as well as recording in stereo. My question: Purchase a second AT2020 for "consistency" or upgrade the second one to at 2035. Does the upgrade outweigh the advantage sameness? (Is "sameness" even a word?!)
Thanks!
LarryK.
No, there's no advantage to it. In fact, there's probably a disadvantage since you're not choosing the vocal mic based on what sounds best on your voice (or guitar if you want the 2020 to be your vocal mic).

Regarding figure-eight mics, heed Keith's words...
Quote:
Originally Posted by keith.rogers View Post
...it must be a big or very well treated room to keep the back side from adding too much reflected content.
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Old 11-28-2019, 07:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keith.rogers View Post
Yes, but you need two of those (1 ea vocal and guitar), and it must be a big or very well treated room to keep the back side from adding too much reflected content. For me, it gets too fiddly. If it's that important (i.e., bleed reduction), I just track separately. (Admittedly, I am not a patient person, and have not really worked on this - I like leaving my stuff just set up.)


Yep, 2 of them would be the way to go and room is always critical. I have found with just acoustic guitar and voice, that some heavy moving blankets in back of the figure 8 mics, though not optimal, can make a big difference. In regards to tracking separately.... Sometimes, on some songs you just don’t get the same synergy as if you were playing and singing at the same time. It would be great if you could track separately but it does not always serve the song/performance
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Old 11-28-2019, 09:44 AM
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It would be great if you could track separately but it does not always serve the song/performance
Just like playing to a click track, tracking guitar and vox separately is a learned skill. Both are skills that make post-production much easier and with enough practice, the performance doesn't have to suffer. My personal trick is to sing "air vocals" while tracking guitar. I'm not making any sound but I'm mouthing every word as if I were.
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Old 11-29-2019, 04:24 AM
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Originally Posted by jim1960 View Post
Just like playing to a click track, tracking guitar and vox separately is a learned skill. Both are skills that make post-production much easier and with enough practice, the performance doesn't have to suffer. My personal trick is to sing "air vocals" while tracking guitar. I'm not making any sound but I'm mouthing every word as if I were.
Ha, this is one of those ongoing debates for which there is no right or wrong answer. It does take skill/practice to record vocals and guitar separately and maintain a killer pocket. But the same can be said for hitting the record button and just laying down a live performance.

I would say it depends on the style and type of recording one is after. Take for example a spin such as Patty Griffins “Living With Ghosts” Album. It’s a Girl and her guitar. I think recording the tracks separately would have changed the finished product, and not for the better. There’s probably great examples on the other side of the debate as well, songs that were tracked and would not have been the same if recorded as a performance.

LKristians, sorry to hijack your thread with this debate. Hope you find it relevant
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Old 11-29-2019, 08:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lkristians View Post
I'm currently using an AT2020 with a personas usb 96. I'd like to start using a second mic for playing/singing simultaneously as well as recording in stereo. My question: Purchase a second AT2020 for "consistency" or upgrade the second one to at 2035. Does the upgrade outweigh the advantage sameness? (Is "sameness" even a word?!)
Thanks!
LarryK.
Just some additional thoughts and to clarify when you say recording in "stereo" with second mic (while playing and singing simultaneously) Understanding "stereo" effect is a linear left to right situation, and given you are using a 2 mic only input interface. What you would then be talking about is having the mic's situated on the same elevation plane in a horizontal spaced pair configuration, both somewhere between the level of your guitar and the level of your mouth. In this case two of same mic's will work fine and figure of 8 is not going to be of particular advantage.

On the other hand if you are thinking of having the mics arranged vertically one for your voice and one for your guitar, then what you are actually talking about is dual mono recording not actually "stereo" (unless you would try to pan them left and right) which could work and would be stereo, but will have the guitar coming more from one side, and the vocal coming more from the other , just as point of clarification .

And in vertical mic position, as people have suggested what sounds good with your particular voice then becomes more of a factor, and you might want to try to for example to audition a 2035 and 2020 and see it there is any noticeable improvement on you voice . And also figure of 8 might be a consideration (although not critical)
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Old 11-29-2019, 10:46 AM
jim1960 jim1960 is offline
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Originally Posted by Mbroady View Post
Ha, this is one of those ongoing debates for which there is no right or wrong answer. It does take skill/practice to record vocals and guitar separately and maintain a killer pocket. But the same can be said for hitting the record button and just laying down a live performance.
True, there's no right or wrong but there are post production compromises that come along with simultaneous recording and punching in is more difficult so an error free performance becomes more critical. For the person new to a studio environment, sitting in front of the mic often produces nervousness which leads to mistakes. If you're the person actually working the controls for yourself, that nervousness is compounded. I understand that for the new person recording separately is going to be challenging at first but I think the long-term benefits outweigh the short-term apprehension. Just my opinion, obviously.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KevWind View Post
And in vertical mic position, as people have suggested what sounds good with your particular voice then becomes more of a factor...
Recording a song with vocals, the vocals are the most important part. That's where people are focusing their listening. So if my budget limits me to two mics, I'd want one of those mics to be as flattering to my voice as possible.
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Old 11-29-2019, 04:44 PM
Lkristians Lkristians is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mbroady View Post
Ha, this is one of those ongoing debates for which there is no right or wrong answer. It does take skill/practice to record vocals and guitar separately and maintain a killer pocket. But the same can be said for hitting the record button and just laying down a live performance.

I would say it depends on the style and type of recording one is after. Take for example a spin such as Patty Griffins “Living With Ghosts” Album. It’s a Girl and her guitar. I think recording the tracks separately would have changed the finished product, and not for the better. There’s probably great examples on the other side of the debate as well, songs that were tracked and would not have been the same if recorded as a performance.

LKristians, sorry to hijack your thread with this debate. Hope you find it relevant
NEVER a need to apologize. I find all the counsel quite valuable and educational! I appreciate everyone's input!!!
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