Keep it simple. A cardioid polar pattern (shown here on the Lewitt LCT 640) has a broad, shallow null at 180º, which rejects sound from behind. For illustrations and audio examples of these techniques, see Figures 7, 8, and 9 as well as AG video Part 5. ... placing a LDC, such as an applicable Neumann or Audio Technica, behind the players right (or left, if left handed) shoulder, pointing down towards where the sound is escaping the sound hole of the guitar. The 2 mono mics are aiming at the 12th fret of the guitar or where the neck meets the body. For example, if a cardioid-type vocal mic is positioned so the back of the mic (its null spot) faces the guitar while the front faces the singer’s mouth, and a similar guitar mic angled down at the guitar with its back facing the singer’s head, decent isolation can result. The Acoustic Guitar is no different. In recording the idea is to isolate instruments including voice as much as possible. In a simple technique Somewhere between the soundhole and the neck is the sound you will use for the best balance of lows and highs, darks and bright. One trick the Aura system uses is also another good approach, in general, to try to salvage a DI acoustic sound—mix a little bit of mic signal in with the DI signal. Figure 10b. See Figure 3. Figure 2. These mics from Shure, Blue, DPA, and Lewitt are all suitable for acoustic guitar recording, and you can hear them demonstrated in our videos. © 2020 Music Maker Publications, Inc. All rights reserved. While XY recording requires a matched pair of microphones to create a consistent image, M/S recording often uses two completely different mics or uses similar microphones set to different pickup patterns. You could achieve an isolated guitar track, and the guitar leaking into the vocal mic will even blend with the DI, warming it up as discussed above. Both large-diaphragm and small- diaphragm condensers are employed. And in some cases, collapsing those tracks to mono can result in some phase cancellation. The sound will reach the two mics at different times which creates a cancellation effect. Recording Magazine and Music Maker Publications, / So, assuming you’re stuck trying to capture the two together, with at least a modicum of separation, what to do? The most typical ways to combine two mics on acoustic guitar would be to either set up a closer mic and a distant mic, or to set two closer mics at different positions in front of the guitar between the 12th fret and the bridge. These placement techniques I wrote here about are made for people like myself and you who are not in a professional studio setting. The idea is to bring the mic for your vocal and the guitar closer for more intimate recording. The extended bandwidth—the presence of strong higher frequencies—from an acoustic guitar calls for mics with both a more extended high-end response, and greater clarity. Here are the most basic options, as shown schematically in Figure 6: Figure 7. You also can make some mistakes on the guitar or vocals and might have to live with it. A mic could also be placed in an overhead position, a couple feet above and just to the front of the player’s head (AG video Part 1)—think of this as the equivalent of the overhead mics that provide air and depth when recording an acoustic drum kit. This mic (or similar models) could also be used on acoustic (in a pinch, or on stage), but a dynamic would no longer be the first choice here. Then you can adjust the lower end frequencies by moving the mic in and out closer to the source of the sound. However, the vocal track may still have too much guitar on it to control or process as required, and a fuller solution may be needed. Unfortunately, this is not always an option, for a variety of reasons. They need to be a little closer than the 12-inch distance placement otherwise the sound will be thin. The amp’s close mic(s) rarely pick up too much bleed, since the signal at the mic is so loud, even with a small amp, relative to other sounds in the room. Three ways to stereo-mic a guitar: spaced (top), near coincident (left), XY (right). At the 12th fret, you’ll get a nice crisp string sound, so it’s also common to angle the mic in toward the body to add more fullness. ... although it might have some advantages compared to close micing, which I generally dislike (again, as I'm sure you know). If you go to / and look at the Acoustic Guitar series, you’ll see several other makes and models in the five video demos there—in particular, check out Acoustic Guitar video Part 2 for a comparison of various mics (and see Figure 1 for a teaser of some of the featured models). The baffle itself might cause unwanted and problematic reflections to back up into the mics, negatively impacting sound quality. These mic placements and techniques will help you do that. I was wondering what to expect/look for when micing over my shoulder? Well, on that note, it’s about time to pack it in. You can pan one mic hard left the other panned hard right. The guitar is not usually loud enough to cause insurmountable leakage problems for other instruments, but other instruments and sounds are much more likely to leak into the guitar mics—since the guitar itself is not that loud, and the mics are not that close, the leakage can become significant. No more phase problems! If you see how Studio Engineers make changes, they are slow and methodical. Of course, just as with electric guitar (and drum kit) miking, you can combine multiple mics for a richer sound. So it will also be easier than adjusting the mic 50 times until you find the right sound that you been chasing. If your guitar is out of tune or it can’t stay in tune, the comparisons you are trying to make between mic positions and placements won’t really matter. The Perception AKG P-170 microphone has a high SPL and a good wide frequency range and is great for musicians with a Home Recording studio. In a Home Recording Studio miking an Acoustic Guitar with the voice can be time saving and produce better quality tracks. they are perfect for this type of set-up. ... You can mic the guitar player from over the shoulder to get the perception that you are playing and hearing the guitar at the same time. This technique will use 2 Small or Large Condenser Mics that are spaced apart 1 to 2 1/5 feet apart. This technique has the mic pointed directly to the source while another mic captures left and right or the sides. We are compensated for referring traffic and business to Amazon and other companies linked to on this site. The classic placement: 12 inches away, aimed at the 12th fret. Both cardioid and bidirectional (figure-8) mics offer this capability. Figure 10c. Miking the Acoustic guitar will be no different then miking any other instrument. Well, it is an option, but as often as not, pointing a mic at the sound hole, even from a foot away, tends to capture too much “boom”. Taylor’s “Expression” system offers high-quality onboard sound. These are Shure KSM141 mics. Now, this is often done—the player can be put in a booth within the larger tracking room, or surrounded with baffles (a.k.a. Back out and then in close to around 10 to 12 inches to search for the best overall sound. Stereo recordings are usually done using 2 mics recorded on separate tracks and panned left or right. This position is good for recording slide guitar. Given the angles and distances involved, and the size of most mics, that placement may be a bit physically awkward, though. The XY Technique or sometimes called a Coincident pattern is a stereo option used in all kinds of applications. If the player is ready then you can get the parts done without hiring a professional guitar player which will cost you. The tracks will still bleed through but the recording will natural and have a live feel that Singer-Songwriters need to exhibit and deliver and most importantly capturing that moment of their special art form that is powerful and intimate. They can be done with inexpensive equipment and set-up by yourself. However, this may not work out for musical reasons, and the quality of the performance must take precedence over recording considerations. Creativity much like a Piano can deliver an entire message and feel for a Songwriter. A mic at 12″ is the typical starting point—in individual cases, distance can then be adjusted by ear, until the best overall tone is heard. Separating the vocals from the guitar playing can produce mistakes. Additionally, the bandwidth of the acoustic is wider, with typically an octave more of high-frequencies (harmonics and overtones) than the more limited range of the electric guitar’s pickup and amp. And the volume of an acoustic guitar is typically much lower than even a small amp, making issues of isolation more critical in some situations. The emphasis is placed on mid-range frequencies. If you decide to employ more than one mic, there are two ways you can approach this: two mics can be arrayed for stereo recording, or the mics can be combined in mono (as described in the electric guitar article), simply to bring a rich blend of different tonalities to the overall recorded sound.

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