Anyone using two figure 8 mics for singer/songwriters?

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mscottweber
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Post by mscottweber » Thu Jul 08, 2010 12:40 pm

I tried a similar technique once a few years ago, and it worked pretty well.

Instead of using one mic on guitar and one on voice, I did a blumlein pair of c414's on the guitar, sort of up higher and pointed down a bit, so the null of the pair was facing the singers head. Then I used a u87, bi-directional, on the voice, aiming the null at the guitar.

I don't recall whether or not I really achieved that much separation, I think I rushed the set up a bit. The end result, however, turned out pretty good and the musician was happy (which is what really counts, right?)

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Post by jmiller » Thu Jul 08, 2010 1:34 pm

Has anyone ever found that they have to be really diligent about maintaining mic placement, constantly, when doing this?

Specifically with the guitar, I find that the performers very often make subtle movements which can dramatically change the sound, requiring constant readjustment of the guitar mic.

I am not talking about constant rocking back and forth, but rather really simple shifts in how they are sitting. they may stop to tune, and when starting to perform again their sitting position or angle is just slightly altered enough that I have to run out and adjust the mic because it is now too thin or too boomy, picking up more vocal than before, etc.

I'm not micing too close or anything- probably about 18" to 2 feet on the guitar mic, depending on how soft the player is (and it seems I am always dealing with very soft players which make it that much harder).

It still works great but I'm finding that I have to really keep up on it a lot.

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Post by JWL » Thu Jul 08, 2010 2:58 pm

Recycled_Brains wrote: How important do you guys feel it is to use the same mic for both gtr. and vocal, or at least mics with a similar character?
Not important at all. Use whichever mic sounds best on each source.

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LOVELY Acoustic Guitar Sound!

Post by tekis » Thu Jul 08, 2010 4:06 pm

Front End Audio wrote:Check this out http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfH-8oMMT9U its a video we shoot when Wes Dooley came and demonstrated his mics for us! I would be interested to see if it works as well for LDC's! I am going to use this technique later today to track some guitar and vocals so I will try out some LDC's!

Cheers,
Nicholas
I was really impressed with the guitar sound! Pretty much as Wes described. I was hoping to hear the separation of the two tracks, though. Any chance?

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Re: LOVELY Acoustic Guitar Sound!

Post by jgimbel » Thu Jul 08, 2010 9:48 pm

tekis wrote:
Front End Audio wrote:Check this out http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfH-8oMMT9U its a video we shoot when Wes Dooley came and demonstrated his mics for us! I would be interested to see if it works as well for LDC's! I am going to use this technique later today to track some guitar and vocals so I will try out some LDC's!

Cheers,
Nicholas
I was really impressed with the guitar sound! Pretty much as Wes described. I was hoping to hear the separation of the two tracks, though. Any chance?
+1, I thought they'd play the individual tracks. I'm definitely of the "soloing things isn't too great as you need to hear sounds in context" but I just thought it would be really interesting to hear what the bleed is sounding like.

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Re: LOVELY Acoustic Guitar Sound!

Post by Recycled_Brains » Fri Jul 09, 2010 8:25 am

tekis wrote:
Front End Audio wrote:Check this out http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfH-8oMMT9U its a video we shoot when Wes Dooley came and demonstrated his mics for us! I would be interested to see if it works as well for LDC's! I am going to use this technique later today to track some guitar and vocals so I will try out some LDC's!

Cheers,
Nicholas
I was really impressed with the guitar sound! Pretty much as Wes described. I was hoping to hear the separation of the two tracks, though. Any chance?
https://www.frontendaudio.com/Articles.asp?ID=213.
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losthighway
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Post by losthighway » Sat Jul 10, 2010 10:53 pm

jmiller wrote:Has anyone ever found that they have to be really diligent about maintaining mic placement, constantly, when doing this?

Specifically with the guitar, I find that the performers very often make subtle movements which can dramatically change the sound, requiring constant readjustment of the guitar mic.

I am not talking about constant rocking back and forth, but rather really simple shifts in how they are sitting. they may stop to tune, and when starting to perform again their sitting position or angle is just slightly altered enough that I have to run out and adjust the mic because it is now too thin or too boomy, picking up more vocal than before, etc.

I'm not micing too close or anything- probably about 18" to 2 feet on the guitar mic, depending on how soft the player is (and it seems I am always dealing with very soft players which make it that much harder).

It still works great but I'm finding that I have to really keep up on it a lot.
Absolutely. Especially if lady/dude is coming in to the control room to hear playback before going out to take a seat with the guitar again. I try to be diligent about peeking in to see if they've oriented themselves properly. Unfortunately this is one of those "can't control everything" situations in recording where we can't always be as scientific as we would like. It is very striking because sometimes a shift of a few inches (especially if the person is turning their body and the guitar with it) can result in a HUGE tonal shift.

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Sean Sullivan
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Post by Sean Sullivan » Mon Jul 12, 2010 4:52 pm

I've come to love this technique, I used today with John Prine with a U87 and a 414. The vocals are hardly audible in the guitar mic, and there's just a touch of guitar in the vocals. But, it sounds very far away. John plays and sings very softly, so there was a lot of proximity boost I had to cut out, but I think with a louder singer and more distance it would be even better.

I'm tracking a 4 piece bluegrass band live next week and they have 3 singers and I'll probably record everything in this manner.
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Post by cgarges » Mon Jul 12, 2010 6:46 pm

Sean Sullivan wrote:I've come to love this technique, I used today with John Prine with a U87 and a 414.
That's very cool. John Prine is great!

I've done it with 414s and with 4050s, but I haven't done it with U87s. Not sure why. At times, I like the U87 on both acoustic guitar and vocals, so it's worth doing even if there's only one around. I need to try this.

Which mic did you use on which source?

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Post by losthighway » Mon Jul 12, 2010 9:07 pm

Sean Sullivan wrote:I've come to love this technique, I used today with John Prine
:shock: Awesome

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Sean Sullivan
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Post by Sean Sullivan » Tue Jul 13, 2010 6:04 am

cgarges wrote:
Sean Sullivan wrote:I've come to love this technique, I used today with John Prine with a U87 and a 414.
Which mic did you use on which source?

Chris Garges
Charlotte, NC
I used the U87 on guitar and 414 (Audio Upgrades modified) on his voice. Maybe next time I'll try it the other way around.
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Post by drumsound » Tue Jul 13, 2010 11:57 am

I'm mixing some stuff I tracked like this last month. It's pretty interesting. I used my TOMB ribbons, as I was trying for a bit of an old school sound. I also had an omni room mic up.

I can really adjust the guitar or vocal with faders and/or EQ without screwing up the other source.

I often will do an XY guitar and figure 8 vocal mic, and I like that a lot too.

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Re: LOVELY Acoustic Guitar Sound!

Post by Fletcher » Thu Jul 15, 2010 10:54 am

tekis wrote:I was really impressed with the guitar sound! Pretty much as Wes described. I was hoping to hear the separation of the two tracks, though. Any chance?
Due respect - on page 1 of this thread I posted http://www.methodsandapplicationslabora ... /?id=fig-8 where you can indeed download the individual tracks from the session [it was a session from my old studio].

It works with large diaphragm condenser mics, ribbon mics, anything that goes into "figure 8".

On the "musicians moving" question - it helps if you can get the performer to sit and still be able to perform. I've had mondo problems with people that need to stand to get a performance as when they're standing, they're moving.

At those times I'm unfortunately sentenced to trying to take their acoustic guitar "direct" [I had a couple of killer acoustic guitars with "pickup outputs" at my old studio] and then running it through umpteen thousands of dollars worth of hardware to make it sound like it was recorded with a mic... but the performance is more important than the audio, so whatever makes the performer comfortable is what needs to be done.
Sean Sullivan wrote:I'm tracking a 4 piece bluegrass band live next week and they have 3 singers and I'll probably record everything in this manner.
If they're a REAL "Bluegrass Band" then usually one mic with the band in a semi-circle is all you need... if you need "stereo" then a Blumlein pair usually does the trick [then again, you were doing John Prine recently and I was trying to figure out how to order dinner].

Peace.

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Sean Sullivan
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Re: LOVELY Acoustic Guitar Sound!

Post by Sean Sullivan » Fri Jul 16, 2010 7:05 am

Fletcher wrote:
Sean Sullivan wrote:I'm tracking a 4 piece bluegrass band live next week and they have 3 singers and I'll probably record everything in this manner.
If they're a REAL "Bluegrass Band" then usually one mic with the band in a semi-circle is all you need... if you need "stereo" then a Blumlein pair usually does the trick [then again, you were doing John Prine recently and I was trying to figure out how to order dinner].

Peace.
Bluegrass is funny, not too many people I've come across do the one mic technique anymore, except live. Everyone still does everything live, but it really just depends on if they want isolation for punches/overdubs or not.
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