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Author Topic: alternate tunings, and their effect on the mix.  (Read 1245 times)

j_u2005

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alternate tunings, and their effect on the mix.
« on: February 12, 2005, 10:51:22 PM »

does going lower than concert pitch make the entire recording sound small? I wondered, because we use them for rhythm riffs, and in the mix they sound low. It sounds crunchy, which is good, but the bass actually accentuates the low end even further, and it sounds small. would playing a second identical riff at a tuning that's concert pitch (or even just at the octave above on the same tuning), fix this?

I am the lead player and i just sit around playing nothing when it's not my "solo time" so it makes me think it shouldn't be that hard to do it. But I work at concert pitch, or even sometimes ABOVE concert pitch, I like sounding shrill, and breaking through the mix.

actually, that's what inspired my question about ajfa, i noticed it sounded smaller than Korn's issues album, and I thought, "wow, that guitar tone is really f**king low".
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antti

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Re: alternate tunings, and their effect on the mix.
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2005, 08:24:47 AM »

j_u2005 wrote on Sun, 13 February 2005 03:51

does going lower than concert pitch make the entire recording sound small? I wondered, because we use them for rhythm riffs, and in the mix they sound low. It sounds crunchy, which is good, but the bass actually accentuates the low end even further, and it sounds small. would playing a second identical riff at a tuning that's concert pitch (or even just at the octave above on the same tuning), fix this?

actually, that's what inspired my question about ajfa, i noticed it sounded smaller than Korn's issues album, and I thought, "wow, that guitar tone is really f**king low".


Most metal bands tune few semitones down these days. Guitarist in my band goes down to C. I just did an album with a band who tuned down to B and I know some people go as far as down to A. When tuning down on 'normal' guitars there tends to be either minor or major problems with intonation. That's why a lot of people use 7 strings these days. Doubling the same part with an octave up part 'lifts' the riff up. It's like tuning oscillators on a synth or balancing bvox stacks. With my experience doubling part with 'concert pitch' tuning can help the riff to stand out but it doesn't work that often.

I don't think it makes it sound 'smaller'. It should make it sound 'bigger' in fact.
There will be some problems though. If bass guitar does the same part it will only be audible as sub (oct below riff) and in the hi-mids (giving it definition, like in the case of Korn.. uggh). Same applies to bass drum sounds (that's why they cut so much in the mids on modern metal and add hell of a lot presence and subs). Also, I find myself adding more eq around 700-900Hz to give guitar riffs more clarity.. sometimes I add more hi-mids too. Down tuned guitars do give more space for vox and snare though. Hope this helps.
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antti

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Re: alternate tunings, and their effect on the mix.
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2005, 09:30:06 AM »

Also to get 'modern' sound you will have to track it a lot.
Do 4 stacks and see how it sound. Then do another 4 with
different sound. If it's not big enough then do another 2-4
with different sound again. Then bounce
them to stereo. It's not uncommon to do up to 20 tracks if the
riff/song needs it. Then again with 'the right' sound and 'the
right way to capture it' you might get away with 2 takes.
It all depends.. The more takes, tracks, mics = also more phase
cancellations and less mono compatibility. Also, don't pan them
all fully left/right if you want it to stand up against the rest. And
yes, it all depends.. Enough of this now.
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