Recording an Upright Bass

Recording Techniques, People Skills, Gear, Recording Spaces, Computers, and DIY

Moderators: drumsound, tomb

george martin
Posts: 1418
Joined: Fri Dec 26, 2003 8:59 am
Location: On the Tundra

Post by JASIII » Tue Jan 23, 2007 12:05 pm

I've had good luck using a 421 on the body, near the top of the soundhole, and a LDC like a AT4033 aimed at the fingerboard for 'click", if you like. I've been really impressed with the 421 though.

audio school
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 6:58 am

Post by browndogsstudio » Wed Jan 24, 2007 3:20 pm

Thanks everyone for all the great information. I really appreciate you time, and you sharing your experiment and successes!


Eric Rottmayer
pushin' record
Posts: 266
Joined: Mon May 12, 2003 6:36 pm
Location: Headphones, OH

Post by Eric Rottmayer » Wed Apr 25, 2007 6:59 am

I just had my first session with an upright bass player. I used a Heil PR-40 at the
bridge, pointed slighty up and my new Avantone FET about 2 feet away, above the
neck pointing down. We also used a mic he brought, AT PRO 35, clipped on the bridge
pointed across one of the f-holes. The PR-40 (going thru UA6176) sounded incredible
with just a bit of eq'ing and a light comp. The FET, on omni, got a lot of the
percussive qualities on the fretboard but was a bit noisy. The pro 35 was great too...
a bit more mid than I was expecting which rounded out the sound nicely.
I gotta pick up one of those now.

alignin' 24-trk
Posts: 73
Joined: Fri Mar 17, 2006 12:56 pm

Post by wookie » Sun Apr 29, 2007 5:54 pm

I've gotten really good results for pizzicato playing with an apex 460 about a foot away, aimed at my fingers. For arco, the hands down best sound I've had was with a crowley and tripp naked eye on the bright side (don't forget to flip the phase!).

User avatar
Flight Feathers
re-cappin' neve
Posts: 642
Joined: Fri May 02, 2003 11:53 am
Location: Maplewood NJ

Post by Flight Feathers » Mon Apr 30, 2007 8:37 am

also to consider, the context of the recording is very important, especially if you are tracking the bass in a live situation with other players in the room. because the surface area of the bass face is so big, it reflects everything happening in front of it, so the bass mic is going to have a lot of bleed. so for live recordings, i like to put 2 rigid fiberglass panels in front of the bass player for a little isolation.

for solo overdubbing, i have found these to work. shure sm7 with gain cranked, very close to the bass for up close and punchy sound. ldc about 18" away for realistic but warm sound. and if the bass itself sounds perfect as is, avenson omni out front between the bridge and plucking hand.
5D Studios <-- my OLD studio
Flight Feathers <-- my band

alignin' 24-trk
Posts: 68
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 7:55 pm

Post by Cryonicsound » Mon Apr 30, 2007 3:22 pm

I don't know what context your bass is in, so I'll give a few examples:

In a jazz context, I generally like to mic about a foot or so away, just above the bridge. If there is not much isolation available, I tend to go towards the RE20 to get some rejection. Otherwise, I tend to move towards the large-diaphragm condensers. I've had luck with the Neumann M149 and the AT4047. You may also want to try (based on availability) a U47 or a Royer 121.

In a classical context, I tend to want more space, so depending on the room, I might have the mic 3-5 feet away from the instrument at the height of the instrument's shoulders, but aiming in the vicinity of the bridge. Obviously, use your ears and adjust from there.
Rafi Singer
Cryonic Sound

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 41 guests