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  #1  
Old 01-30-2018, 05:00 PM
Reidclifford Reidclifford is offline
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Default At2020, ur22mkii, garageband

So Iíve finally got a decent home recording set up for basic guitar demos to send to some songwriters I work with. And I have some questions haha

Iím using an audio technical at2020 large diaghram mic, a Steinberg UR22 MKII interface, and GarageBand on my MacBook Pro. Obviously not looking for professional quality, just something basic for demos/preproduction.

What is the ideal mic placement with a set up like this, in a small, wooden floor bedroom?

Does anyone have any tips for getting the best out of GarageBand for just a single solo guitar?

Any tips or advice would be appreciated
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Old 01-31-2018, 07:19 AM
MikeBmusic MikeBmusic is offline
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There's no set answer to your question!
Experiment with mic positions. A starting point could be about 12" out from the 12th fret, angled slightly towards the soundhole. Try recording. Listen back to it - how's it sound?
Note that the way your room sounds will affect how your guitar sound is recorded - and also how it sounds when you listen back.
Typically small rooms aren't good without a lot of acoustic treatment (bass trapping, not 'acoustic foam') due to the short reverb time from the hard walls/floor/ceiling.
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Old 01-31-2018, 08:06 AM
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KevWind KevWind is online now
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What Mike B said.
Also you should be able to get a decent sound out of the system you list. And will be fine to get started recording . At some point later once you get some experience, with solo guitar you may want to consider stereo mic'ing but that can certainly wait a while


I don't use GG but in general for solo guitar you want to keep the level peaks at -6 or below while recording (you can raise them later at final mix down with a peak limiter) For starters probably do not worry about EQ with perhaps the exception of a high pass filter to bring down the level of the low end
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Old 01-31-2018, 10:34 AM
Ty Ford Ty Ford is offline
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Yeah, this should be a learning experience for you as a recording person. It's very difficult to learn anything about mic positioning when you are also the player. You might have a friend come in and play your guitar while you move the mic around while listening on headphones. During the recording, say where the mic is so you can remember the positioning during playback.

Regards,

Ty Ford
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Old 01-31-2018, 01:16 PM
DukeX DukeX is offline
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The following method has served me well in the past when testing mics and guitars:

Spend a day (or half) just recording/familiarizing yourself with your guitar, room, and recording equipment. Not only will you learn a LOT, you will also start an audio archive that can be referenced against other rooms, guitars, equipment.

Choose two or three songs that capture your style(s) of playing, but only play about 30-60 seconds of each. Make sure you play with fingers and/or pick, strum, and flatpick to capture the different types of tones the guitar produces.

1) Start with the mic straight out from the neck joint. Do not rotate the mic toward sound hole or lower frets. Keep it perpendicular to the fretboard.

2) Record each piece 6", 12", 18", 24" out from the guitar.

3) Repeat with the mic slightly turned toward the sound hole, then slightly turned toward the lower frets.

4) Move the mic to the 12th fret and repeat steps 2,3.

5) Move the mic to the lower bout and repeat steps 2,3.

This will render 36 recordings of that mic with that guitar.

Take notes for each recording with mic positioning specifics as well as mic-preamp settings.

Have fun!
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Old 02-01-2018, 07:43 AM
MikeBmusic MikeBmusic is offline
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Besides DukeX's suggestion - 36 different 'positions', you may find you don't hear much difference between each (use headphones, not speakers in the room) due to ear fatigue. So give your ears a rest as needed.
Another factor - specially when you start having the mic further away from the guitar - is where you are positioned in the room, because the reflections from the walls will be picked up by the mic.
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Old 02-01-2018, 11:21 AM
DukeX DukeX is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeBmusic View Post
Besides DukeX's suggestion - 36 different 'positions', you may find you don't hear much difference between each (use headphones, not speakers in the room) due to ear fatigue. So give your ears a rest as needed.
Another factor - specially when you start having the mic further away from the guitar - is where you are positioned in the room, because the reflections from the walls will be picked up by the mic.
Thanks for the followup, Mike.

Yes, my OCD method of learning the guitar, room, and mics can cause ear fatigue upon playback/critical listening (even with headphones), thus the short 30-60 second clip suggestion. I also recommend resting the ears, and in fact, going back in subsequent days for another listen.

I absolutely agree that some of the differences will be more subtle than others...but they will be different.

Also agree that as the mic moves within the room the sound of the room changes as well.
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Old 02-01-2018, 12:57 PM
FrankHudson FrankHudson is offline
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You say demos, so I'd think you need to produce reasonable quality intelligible recordings. I could be misunderstanding your aims, but that's what the following addresses.

Are you recording vocals and guitar, or just guitar?

For just guitar, that point it at the 12th fret, make sure you aren't even getting close to 0 db (per KevWind), and if muddy, boomy sound results, high pass filter to roll off the low end is a classic recipe. If your room is adding bad tones, you can move the mic closer than a foot, but for some mics you'll get more proximity effect and need more low end rolloff. (proximity effect? many mics boost low frequencies when you get a sound source close to them)

GarageBand may even have some useful presets (Apple Logic does, and the current Macintosh version of GB is essentially "Logic Lite") which will add some light compression and that bass cut EQ contour. You can use them "stock" or modify them to suit.

As an alternative to the external mic, the sub $100 iRig Acoustic Stage ciip-on mic works well, sounds pretty good, and reduces room effects.

If you are recording vocals along with the guitar (one pass, one mic) then you're going to have the room come into play. Just try to find a room and position that doesn't hurt things too much. I'd probably start with placing the mic above my mouth pointing down a bit and the acoustic adjust distance and position so that I get enough acoustic guitar "bleed" to blend with the vocal decently.

If your demos are vocal and guitar, strongly consider GB's ability to overdub. Record the guitar part, close-miced, then record the vocal as an overdub. Use a pop filter on the mic, but again closer mic placement to reduce room effects and some bass roll off (high pass) may help reduce proximity effect. Learn to "comp" your vocals so that you can record several takes of that vocal overdub and combine the best parts of each. Even with demos, the vocals are the part you need to "sell" on a guitar/vocal recording.
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