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Author Topic: Electric guitar mics  (Read 6881 times)

acupunk

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Electric guitar mics
« on: July 11, 2004, 01:33:14 pm »

I have read many threads on this topic. Electric guitar mics for cabinets.R121's, R84's Etc.
I have never been satisfied with a 57.
What is the latest suggestions for a mic for this purpose?
I am recording a Bogner Shiva combo at pretty low volumes.
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guitarbth

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2004, 02:28:01 pm »

Ive been using a Royer 121 lately.... it's like all others are inferior... they sound great...

Ive not tried the R84 however...
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Jonas as

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2004, 07:47:53 pm »

Hi,
Being a guitar player not happy with 57, i will suggest following,

The royer 121 is very good-agreed.
But don't forget:
Sennheiser MD-421-never bad on a good sounding amp.
Beyer m-160- also good
Coles 4038 ribbons, it's figure of eight so it has that cool room color.
MD 441 is also nice sometimes.

Theres plenty of mics that could be cool on guitar, it's to a degree just about wich color youre after. Most of these mics have a pretty "smooth" sound.  And they all have some kind of mid-range peak and mostly dips a bit to somewhere else in the midrange, as do the sm57, its just in different places, and thus might be good depending on the exact application.

High level amps tend to be very snappy and responsive, dynamic, and detailed so smoother sounding less detailed mics might be ion order as above.

But, for low SPL amp operation a condenser might be nice, bringing out more of whats there, but lots of amps are relatively noisy on low levels, and a condenser won't make that less apparent...

AKG C535 is a pretty cheap condenser, unlikely choice, but for some reason is really nice on twins, or similar amps.

U 87s can be nice on a low level amp, but needs a few inches of distance.  
tough the last time i recorded a very low level amp, i was a micstand short, and so i just hung the 87 by the cable over the tilted twin, worked very nicely.  

On VOX ac30 kind of amps, some tube condensers can be killer. But it depends a bit on what kind of role you want the guitar to play in the mix.

also of course, at least one room mic, wich might be very different characterwise than the main mic, might bring a lot of life to your guitar track.

These days i'm really into a combo of beyer m-160 as main and the dynamic omni Sennheiser MD-21 as room.

Hope this is helpful-
-bora
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djui5

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #3 on: July 12, 2004, 02:49:38 am »

414 TL's aren't bad on some cab's also...

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Bredo

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #4 on: July 12, 2004, 08:14:25 am »

A big secret:Try the Oktava ML52 ribbon mic. A/B this with an sm57, and you see what I meen.

Let me hear from you when you have tried this one. I'm not kidding, this was an eye-opener.
P.S. Work a bit on the placement D.S.

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #5 on: July 12, 2004, 09:10:47 am »

A Coles 4040 and/or 4038 is often a good choice... a couple of the Microtech Gefell mics work rather nicely too... like the M-295 and the M-930.  They're rapidly becomeing some of my favorite mics.
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CN Fletcher

mwagener wrote on Sat, 11 September 2004 14:33
We are selling emotions, there are no emotions in a grid


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If you've spent most of your life with a few thousand dollars worth of musicians in the studio, making a decision every second and a half... and you and  they are going to have to live with it for the rest of your lives, you'll get pretty arrogant too.  It takes a certain amount of balls to do that... something around three"
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fishtop

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #6 on: July 12, 2004, 05:47:01 pm »

In addition to those listed by others, I've had good luck
with Beyer Dymanics M201.
It is similar to a SM57, but with
a little bit more.

Sell for about $200 each.

debuys

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #7 on: July 13, 2004, 12:32:30 am »

Here's an odd one:

I love the sound of a C1000 on guitar amps. It's about all I use these things for anymore.
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PRobb

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #8 on: July 13, 2004, 12:48:23 am »

How many mics do you guys usually use on an amp? I saw a picture of a Ross Hogarth set-up http://www.royerlabs.com/ross_hogarth/Guitar_rig_XLG.html and was a bit surprised at the number of mics.
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raw-tracks

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #9 on: July 13, 2004, 11:53:39 am »

I've always been an SM57/MD421 kinda guy. I've tried the C414/U87 and various other condenser mic options. I can honestly say that I've never been 100% happy with the electric guitar sound I was getting. I had the opportunity to use a couple of Royer R121's on the last session I did. Wow, all the things that I didn't like about my previous electric guitar tracks were gone. The Royers totally blew me away. I must say, I never used a ribbon on electrics before, so maybe it's just a ribbon thing rather than a Royer thing. But I can't see myself recording electrics with 57's anymore.
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acupunk

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #10 on: July 14, 2004, 02:20:40 am »

Royers seem the way to go. Does anyone have suggestion of a 121 vs a 122?
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raal

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #11 on: November 17, 2004, 02:27:05 am »

121s are passive - 122s are active. for guitars, specially loud guitars, i probably wouldn't spend the extra $. the 121s have a very slight difference in sound also, which you may or may not prefer.

the 122 being active, has more gain, making it useful as an all around mic.

i would suggest you listen before you buy.
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judah

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #12 on: November 17, 2004, 03:11:54 am »

PRobb wrote on Tue, 13 July 2004 06:48

How many mics do you guys usually use on an amp? I saw a picture of a Ross Hogarth set-up http://www.royerlabs.com/ross_hogarth/Guitar_rig_XLG.html and was a bit surprised at the number of mics.


I usually put two mic per cab for guitar tracks. Mi preferred combos are:

R121+57
MD421+M500
M500+545
R121+545

R.
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bloodstone

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #13 on: November 17, 2004, 06:13:16 am »

For low volume amps my best results have been with an AKG Solidtube, believe it or not.  Also, I like the Oktava ML52, Sennheiser MD421, and also have been surprised how many times an AKG 414 BULS will do the job.  CAD M9 can be just the thing you need.
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judah

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #14 on: November 17, 2004, 09:14:32 am »

Hu, yeah, with blues guitar (medium to low gain distortion):

AT4047+R121

The amp was a Fender Twin and a Peavey Classic 4x10".

Heavy guitars:

R121 (almost dead on speaker dome), 57 on its right side, as close as possible, MD421 on its left side, touching the R121.
Head was Engl Savage 120, Marshal 1960 cabinet with stock speakers.

On noise stuff:

R121+57 (touchin', same as above), amp was a Peavey Classic 50W, 2x12" (stock speakers)

On bright rock stuff:

M500+MD421

Amp was a Fender Deluxe 1x12". The worst guitar amplifier ever build.

R.
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Ronnie Amighetti
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Fletcher

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #15 on: November 17, 2004, 09:17:10 am »

Checked out a Josephson e22S in that application recently... might have a new favorite!!!
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CN Fletcher

mwagener wrote on Sat, 11 September 2004 14:33
We are selling emotions, there are no emotions in a grid


"Recording engineers are an arrogant bunch.  
If you've spent most of your life with a few thousand dollars worth of musicians in the studio, making a decision every second and a half... and you and  they are going to have to live with it for the rest of your lives, you'll get pretty arrogant too.  It takes a certain amount of balls to do that... something around three"
Malcolm Chisholm

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #16 on: November 17, 2004, 10:32:24 am »

I find a KSM32 very pleasing on Electric Gtr.
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jimmyjazz

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #17 on: November 17, 2004, 05:04:56 pm »

I just couldn't make my Royer 121 work on the last record I did.  It was too dark.  I grabbed a Shure SM57 and the guitars just worked a lot better.  (Think Crue/GnR/ACDC as a sonic reference for the band.)

On the other hand, the 121 is working beautifully on a darker pop record I'm working on now.
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JCLopeman

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #18 on: November 18, 2004, 12:08:18 am »

I primarily record electric guitar (I am a guitar player, not an engineer).  I own and frequently use the KSM32, R84, SolidTube, SM57 and U87ai on a loud vintage 30 4x12 cab.  I have found the R84, KSM32 and SM57 (or combos of any of those) to be very good on humbucking heavily distorted sounds, the SolidTube to be very good on strat warm distorted blues/surf sounds, and the U87ai/R84 combo suited for clean/chimey sounds.  I ususally use a '57 centered on the coil for a reference to other mics.  

I have also found the quality of the pre is also very important, especially when recording at lower volumes and with a low output mic like the R84.  Mic placement is the more important than the mic/pre combo.  If you are recording an open back combo, try a mic on the back as well as front and be careful with phase.
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judah

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #19 on: November 18, 2004, 02:36:08 am »

Fletcher wrote on Wed, 17 November 2004 15:17

Checked out a Josephson e22S in that application recently... might have a new favorite!!!


Hi Fletcher,
would you mind tellin' us more about this very niece piece? I looked at it mostly because of the Albini factor and would like to know what you can do with it. Is it really a swiss army knife of microphones? Which application is best suited for?
The euro-USD exchange rate is so tempting right now. There has never been a better time to buy from US, so I'm looking out for a lot of stuff.

Cheers.

R.
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J.J. Blair

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #20 on: November 18, 2004, 12:49:56 pm »

The mics I most frequently use for electric guitar are the AKG C12-VR, which is perhaps my favorite (which is the same capsule as the 414-TLII), and a Sennheiser MD409, which is easily my favorite dynamic mic.  I'll use the 409 on both electric bass and guitar amps. You mentioned the R84, which I found works ok with my Ampeg B15 for bass.  There is a miking technique I sometimes use, where you close mic the cabinet and then you use a ribbon mic a few feet off in whatever you determine to be the sweet spot for phasing.  The R84 works pretty well in that situation, but I honestly prefer a RCA 77 or 44 in that situation.  I think it has something to do with less high end response those mics.  

Honestly though, if you want just one mic for the application and you don't want to spend a great deal of money or you don't want to worry about damaging ribbons, I would try the MD409.  Don't even bother with the newer 609s.  Pieces of shit.  But the 409 gives you great low end response and a tight, punchy high end, especially if you like definition in the texture of electric guitar.  I wish I had more of them, to tell you the truth.
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Fletcher

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #21 on: November 18, 2004, 02:48:25 pm »

judah wrote on Thu, 18 November 2004 02:36


Hi Fletcher,
would you mind tellin' us more about this very niece piece? I looked at it mostly because of the Albini factor and would like to know what you can do with it. Is it really a swiss army knife of microphones?


It's been pretty "swiss army knife" like in my world.  When I tried it on a guitar amp it was about about 2/3'rds of the way from the dust cap to the speaker surround, and tilted to be about parallel with the cone paper.  Sounded HUUUUUGE and clear.

I've used e22S's on drums, on acoustic guitar, on mandolin, on grand piano and have never been disappointed... a couple of times I found myself liking a Gefell M-295 as much or more in the same application, some times less...
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CN Fletcher

mwagener wrote on Sat, 11 September 2004 14:33
We are selling emotions, there are no emotions in a grid


"Recording engineers are an arrogant bunch.  
If you've spent most of your life with a few thousand dollars worth of musicians in the studio, making a decision every second and a half... and you and  they are going to have to live with it for the rest of your lives, you'll get pretty arrogant too.  It takes a certain amount of balls to do that... something around three"
Malcolm Chisholm

jgreenlee

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #22 on: November 18, 2004, 05:10:55 pm »

I want a few of those e22's to play with.  There's no way I can afford them right now though so I'm staying away.  Perhaps next year I'll be able to jump on a pair or so.  

Anyway....I haven't seen any other side-address SD condensors out there.  Am I just missing them or is the e22 about it?

Peace,

James
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OOF!

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #23 on: November 19, 2004, 01:55:20 am »

to the chap you found the 121 too dark- it's pretty particular to the pre you're using with it.  the great river nv is a great match for the royer- or most any other ribbon.
surprisingly, the chandler tg2 also is an excellent pairing, even though it doesn't have a lot of top.
the 121 is also particular with placement- put it right on the center of the cone, wherre it's brightest, possibly angled slightly down to avoid some blast.

other favorites of mine are an ev 646- the hammer- excellent punch. for an uncolored sound, an ev re50 omni works great- usually for more nuanced playing.
one more thing- try putting an omni condensor far away- like in the other room, with the door ajar, and mix that in or pan opposite- it adds a lot of dimension
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judah

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #24 on: November 19, 2004, 02:42:52 am »

Fletcher wrote on Thu, 18 November 2004 20:48

judah wrote on Thu, 18 November 2004 02:36


Hi Fletcher,
would you mind tellin' us more about this very niece piece? I looked at it mostly because of the Albini factor and would like to know what you can do with it. Is it really a swiss army knife of microphones?


It's been pretty "swiss army knife" like in my world.  When I tried it on a guitar amp it was about about 2/3'rds of the way from the dust cap to the speaker surround, and tilted to be about parallel with the cone paper.  Sounded HUUUUUGE and clear.

I've used e22S's on drums, on acoustic guitar, on mandolin, on grand piano and have never been disappointed... a couple of times I found myself liking a Gefell M-295 as much or more in the same application, some times less...



Thanks. I'll look into one. The price is really tempting.
The Gefell line seems very interesting too and so much cheaper here in Europe. Isn't the M295 a SD condenser?

Cheers.

R.
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jimmyjazz

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #25 on: November 19, 2004, 12:10:17 pm »

OOF! wrote on Fri, 19 November 2004 01:55

to the chap you found the 121 too dark- it's pretty particular to the pre you're using with it.  the great river nv is a great match for the royer- or most any other ribbon.


That was me . . . and that was exactly the preamp I used!  I just couldn't get the guitar to "cut" enough.  I probably should have messed with it some more, but we were (as usual) in a hurry.
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mumbles

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #26 on: November 24, 2004, 08:16:52 pm »

I've had good results with 414buls's and AT4050's.  Mostly though Chandler tg2.
The 4050's are obviously quite a bit brighter, so it depends on the material.
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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #27 on: November 26, 2004, 10:40:27 am »

The Blue Ball mic is a lot of fun as a secondary mic on distorted guitar cabs. I'm using one in conjunction with a 57 on some guitars I'm recording right now - good stuff Smile

-Lance
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gtoledo3

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #28 on: November 26, 2004, 03:01:35 pm »

I usually use a 545, a Beta 52 if I want more "cut"- and if it is a high volume sound, or a R84.

I dare say that if a 57 doesn't sound good, then:

1. Your preamp isn't a good match.
or
2. Your mic placement is off.
or
3. The tone of the guitar/amp sucks.

A 57 isn't always the best sound in solo, but it invariably will work well in the mix, if the actual source sound is good.
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sonixx

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #29 on: November 26, 2004, 07:43:44 pm »

Fletcher wrote on Wed, 17 November 2004 14:17

Checked out a Josephson e22S in that application recently... might have a new favorite!!!
Fletcher,

do you find your e22S mic slightly dark?  I've found a e609S and a e22S are nice complements on the same cab...

-keith-
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James Duncan

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Re: Electric guitar mics
« Reply #30 on: November 27, 2004, 12:00:39 pm »

I have never had good success with the Sennheiser M409, not sure why, but I am not a fan of that sound I guess...

I do love the "tried and true" SM57, and of course the Senn MD421. I also find that for a bit brighter sound, the MD441 is also a good choice.
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