Using EQ while recording acoustic guitar???

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

Moderators: drumsound, tomb

dino
takin' a dinner break
Posts: 194
Joined: Sun Jun 15, 2003 6:40 am
Location: a mile west of the crossroads & the old circus grounds

Using EQ while recording acoustic guitar???

Post by dino » Sun Apr 12, 2015 7:26 am

How many folks use EQ when recording acoustic guitar? I understand choice of instrument, playing technique, microphone choice and placement are the first things to address. If I"m really close to the sound I want but feel that the tone of my big bodied acoustic is still too low end dominant, would using/acquiring a preamp with EQ be a legitimate alternative? The settings would of course be a matter of trial and error, but does anyone have a few suggestions for a starting point?
Thanks for reading....Dino
I'd gladly trade everything I have now for a nice sounding room and a bucket of 57's

User avatar
joninc
deaf.
Posts: 1839
Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2003 5:02 pm
Location: canada
Contact:

Post by joninc » Sun Apr 12, 2015 12:04 pm

An eq can be helpful but probably isn't necessary. You basically want to roll off to r low end.

Do you mean that the tone is too bassy?

Are you pointed towards the sound hole? If yes, move more towards the 12 fret.

Are you sing a Ldc? Is there a HPF on the mic? Use it!
the new rules : there are no rules

User avatar
DrummerMan
george martin
Posts: 1335
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2008 12:18 pm
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Post by DrummerMan » Sun Apr 12, 2015 1:04 pm

I don't have separate rack eqs but when there's an eq already in the channel strip I have no hesitation using it. Logic being that if, for example, something's too bassy, I won't really know I I like the way the other frequencies are being dealt with, and therefor whether to move the mic or change mics/preamps, until I deal with the low end.

Again, it's not going to make or break my workflow, but if it's already there Im happy to use it.


Specifically with acoustic guitar I do tend to bump the high end and reduce the low end on my LA-610 because the little eqs on that sound nicer to me than my plugin eqs.
Geoff Mann
composer | drummer | Los Angeles, CA

dino
takin' a dinner break
Posts: 194
Joined: Sun Jun 15, 2003 6:40 am
Location: a mile west of the crossroads & the old circus grounds

Post by dino » Sun Apr 12, 2015 3:33 pm

Thanks guys.
The guitar (Martin D41)sounds great in the room but seems to be a bit bass heavy regardless of mic choice or placement. I've been recording it that way and trying to use plugins to clean it up but was wondering if an EQ during the recording stage would give better results?
Thanks again...d
I'd gladly trade everything I have now for a nice sounding room and a bucket of 57's

User avatar
JWL
deaf.
Posts: 1869
Joined: Sun Apr 02, 2006 7:37 pm
Location: Maine
Contact:

Post by JWL » Sun Apr 12, 2015 4:57 pm

If I have some analog EQ at my disposal then I'd consider using it gently on the way in for some small, broad boosts (I don't often cut on the way in), but for the most part I'll do most of the EQing during the mix.

Far more often I'll move the mic, change the pick, or something like that. If bass is too boomy I'll move the mics back to reduce proximity effect.

User avatar
joninc
deaf.
Posts: 1839
Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2003 5:02 pm
Location: canada
Contact:

Post by joninc » Sun Apr 12, 2015 5:03 pm

An eq can be helpful but probably isn't necessary. You basically want to roll off to r low end.

Do you mean that the tone is too bassy?

Are you pointed towards the sound hole? If yes, move more towards the 12 fret.

Are you sing a Ldc? Is there a HPF on the mic? Use it!
the new rules : there are no rules

kslight
moves faders with mind
Posts: 2534
Joined: Tue Oct 13, 2009 7:40 pm

Post by kslight » Sun Apr 12, 2015 5:05 pm

I like to get as close as possible to the sound I'm after as early as possible in the process, whatever that means. If that means switching guitars, mics, placement, or throwing processors at it...

User avatar
Scodiddly
ghost haunting audio students
Posts: 3414
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2003 6:38 am
Location: Mundelein, IL, USA
Contact:

Post by Scodiddly » Mon Apr 13, 2015 6:17 am

Martin guitars do tend to have the car boomer thing going on a lot of the time. Definitely a low cut would help.

Maybe EQ a recording in the box the way you like, and then look for outboard EQ that uses the same number/type of filters? Or go the other way, find an EQ that looks nice and see if you can use the same capabilities in your recording software to get the sound you want.

User avatar
lyman
re-cappin' neve
Posts: 663
Joined: Sat Nov 20, 2004 5:14 pm
Location: Plymouth Rock City, MA

Post by lyman » Mon Apr 13, 2015 7:04 am

A dreadnaught or jumbo acoustic can definitely be too boomy for some stuff, especially if it's an acoustic part in a dense rock mix. But even for solo. Carving out some lows is definitely something to look into, or at least using a low shelf setting that some mics/pre's have. For less boomy sources, try using an orchestral size bodied acoustic (OM is how they're abbreviated with some brands iirc) or similar.

Studiodawg
gettin' sounds
Posts: 130
Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2006 9:19 am
Location: USA

Post by Studiodawg » Mon Apr 13, 2015 12:04 pm

Sounds like proximity effect/room sound...have you tried an omnidirectional microphone yet? Can you play and have someone slowly move a directional mic away from the guitar (wear headphones to discern what effect this has on the "heft" of your sound)? What are the dimensions of the room height/width/depth?

dino
takin' a dinner break
Posts: 194
Joined: Sun Jun 15, 2003 6:40 am
Location: a mile west of the crossroads & the old circus grounds

Post by dino » Mon Apr 13, 2015 1:33 pm

Yes the room is definitely part of the issue I'm sure. This is a home recording situation with extremely dead acoustics. The guitar sounds completely different out in the living/dining area with the wood floors. I've been trying to keep things in the back room for the convenience of having the gear in the same room with me. I have also been trying to keep to the idea of "take what you have and make it work", rather than throwing money at a problem, although I have no issue buying something if it would make things better. I would be curious as to whether you guys would lean towards a new microphone or if a preamp/EQ would be a better purchase for this use. The idea of using an omni hadn't crossed my mind. I have only an AT4050 available in that department.
Looks like more trial and error. Thank you all for assisting this old man trying to learn new things....dino
My limited mic locker consists of Oktava & Rode NT5 sdc's,...2 each.
Preamps are limited to Grace (x2) and a True PSolo.
I'd gladly trade everything I have now for a nice sounding room and a bucket of 57's

User avatar
JWL
deaf.
Posts: 1869
Joined: Sun Apr 02, 2006 7:37 pm
Location: Maine
Contact:

Post by JWL » Mon Apr 13, 2015 2:23 pm

Cool. With 4 SDCs I'd try one pair in an X-Y setup close up, and the other pair as an "overhead", possibly also in X-Y or maybe ORTF or something. If you have tall ceilings this will be really cool, that way you can dial in more room sound by raising the mics.

I use fig-8 mics for acoustic guitar a lot, especially if the performer also sings. It can def get boomy because of lots of proximity.

MoreSpaceEcho
zen recordist
Posts: 6322
Joined: Wed May 07, 2003 11:15 am

Post by MoreSpaceEcho » Mon Apr 13, 2015 3:29 pm

try the 4050 in omni. try it at the 12th fret, like a foot away. try it with the hipass in. you really ought to be able to get a nice, non boomy sound with that mic.

if not, really any decent plugin eq should work just fine to shelve the lows down and/or take out some low end/low mid with a bell cut.

kslight
moves faders with mind
Posts: 2534
Joined: Tue Oct 13, 2009 7:40 pm

Post by kslight » Mon Apr 13, 2015 3:34 pm

I'm really surprised you're getting a lot of boom out of Rode NT5s. I own a pair, nowadays I use the MJ capsules but stock they are about as opposite from boomy as the come. At that point I'd consider your mic placement may be part of the issue. I tend to subscribe to the 12th fret miking philosophy usually backed up a few feet to taste.

User avatar
Nick Sevilla
speech impediment
Posts: 4800
Joined: Mon Mar 03, 2008 1:34 pm
Location: Los Angeles California USA
Contact:

Post by Nick Sevilla » Mon Apr 13, 2015 10:13 pm

I ALWAYS use EQ on acoustics.

I also use 1 to two to three mics on it as well.Depending on how much the guitar will be featured in the mix.

I always try to use complementary microphones, one for low end, one for top end, and if needed, one for more dimensionality, or "detail", if it is not coming through the first two mics.

As to what EQ to use, usually roll off an octave below the low E note, 6dB, and also a sharp filter to roll off everything below 50 Hz, cause that stuff can just cause tons of problems when going through a compressor. As to the midrange and top end, I just try to make the recorded audio sound as close as possible to the guitar as it sounds to my ears in the room. So it will vary as to what I do there.
Realizing vibratory excursions from a paper widget.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests