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Good "beginner" guitar mic...advice?

#1 User is offline   heymisterk 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 06:00 AM

Hi All,

I have recently entered the world of home recording. I have a basic Tascam 4-track recorder.

I have mic'd my Taylor GS a couple different ways: angled my Shure 58 (I know; it's a vocal mic) to record with that; recorded using just the Tascam's internal mic; used both of those mics and after running my guitar through my Genz-Benz.

None of these methods has given me a satisfactory result. So...

What would you guys suggest as a good "beginner" acoustic guitar mic? I don't want to buy junk, but I don't want to break the bank, either.

Any help or suggestions would be most appreciated!

Thanks!
Jeff

#2 User is offline   Versatile 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 06:18 AM

There are some excellent mics designed to work on acoustic instruments

They might be available in your locality...Microvox is one well established mfgr

Or a condenser mic like a Rode, who do a low cost range as well as their valve pro models...

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#3 User is offline   heymisterk 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 06:52 AM

Thank you! Sheesh...there are lots of choices just within the Rode brand...too many!

#4 User is offline   jrplefty 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 06:59 AM

Mr. K,

I second Versatile's suggestion of Rode as a mic that is good value for the money. If you don't have a good sounding room to record in I would suggest a stereo pair of the NT5. That will allow you to capture the guitar and almost completely cut out the sounds the room will create.

As far as large diaphragm condensers are concerned I have used the Shure KSM32, and been pleased with the results of that. I set LDC up differently than I would the above mentioned NT5, so I do capture some of the room sound with that.

Just my .02. Good luck, recording is fun and challenging, especially as a dog owner B)
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#5 User is offline   heymisterk 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 08:04 AM

View Postjrplefty, on 07 April 2012 - 06:59 AM, said:

Mr. K,

I second Versatile's suggestion of Rode as a mic that is good value for the money. If you don't have a good sounding room to record in I would suggest a stereo pair of the NT5. That will allow you to capture the guitar and almost completely cut out the sounds the room will create.

As far as large diaphragm condensers are concerned I have used the Shure KSM32, and been pleased with the results of that. I set LDC up differently than I would the above mentioned NT5, so I do capture some of the room sound with that.

Just my .02. Good luck, recording is fun and challenging, especially as a dog owner B)


Thanks!

#6 User is offline   Rambler 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 08:09 AM

Shure Sm57.
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#7 User is offline   Tarrr 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 09:33 AM

I plug the Shure KSM32 condenser mic directly into a JoeMeek3Q and output that to the recorder. Gives you the phantom power, compression, EQ, pre&post gain before recording. not too shabby

#8 User is offline   ritchie69 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 10:24 AM

View Postheymisterk, on 07 April 2012 - 06:00 AM, said:

Hi All,

I have recently entered the world of home recording. I have a basic Tascam 4-track recorder.

I have mic'd my Taylor GS a couple different ways: angled my Shure 58 (I know; it's a vocal mic) to record with that; recorded using just the Tascam's internal mic; used both of those mics and after running my guitar through my Genz-Benz.

None of these methods has given me a satisfactory result. So...

What would you guys suggest as a good "beginner" acoustic guitar mic? I don't want to buy junk, but I don't want to break the bank, either.

Any help or suggestions would be most appreciated!

Thanks!
Jeff

Depends on the budget. I record with a Neumann TLM49, is an LDC, born mainly for vocals recording, however, I am looking for a small diaphragm condenser too, more suitable for acoustic guitar, so I can choose the one that seems more suited to a particular song.
Here are some of the most used SDC:
Rode M3
Beyerdynamic MCE530
AKG C1000
Rode NT3/NT5
AKG C451 B
Neumann KM184/185

Prices are different, but if you use with the Tascam integrated preamps, I would go to the Rode M3 or NT3.
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#9 User is offline   double0blues 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 11:21 AM

View PostRambler, on 07 April 2012 - 08:09 AM, said:

Shure Sm57.


+1

I agree - the SM57 is a good way to go - nice all around instrument microphone...

#10 User is offline   Red 333 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 11:39 AM

The Avantone CK-1 is an excellent mic for the money, and records instruments exceptionally well. It also comes with three capsules (omni, cardiod, and hyper cardoid) to suit your recording environment or needs, and also has a high pass switch and 10db cut (which helps eliminate distortion when close micing). It doesn't have a battery, so make sure your recording device provides 48V phantom power.

Avantone CK-1

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#11 User is offline   Madman_Greg 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 11:45 AM

the SM57 is not really detailed enough to capure an acoustic in its full glory, but it can produce something quite pleasing

3 questions

1) what's your budget
2) do you want to record the guitar in stereo
3) does your recorder have phantom power
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#12 User is offline   heymisterk 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 01:44 PM

View PostMadman_Greg, on 07 April 2012 - 11:45 AM, said:

the SM57 is not really detailed enough to capure an acoustic in its full glory, but it can produce something quite pleasing

3 questions

1) what's your budget
2) do you want to record the guitar in stereo
3) does your recorder have phantom power


1. $300.
2. Honestly, at this point, it's not that important.
3. No.

I also looked at something called a K&K Meridian, which is an external mic with a pre-amp; pic clips on to my guitar. Looks kinda cool...

#13 User is offline   Madman_Greg 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 02:55 PM

Small diaphragm condenser (SDC) mics would typically be used in studio for recording acoustic guitar. These require a power supply in order to work.

But to be honest there is no rule and it is what sounds right for a particular recording and that why in the studio a number of mics would be trialed to see what sounds best and also you could use a mixture of dynamic, ribbon and condenser mics on the same guitar, micing different positions or providing a room sound further away.

If your guitar has a pickup then a single mic combined with the pickup output can work very well and produce good results. Recorded as two separate tracks, time aligned if needed, then mixed.

Personally I like to try 2 mics on a guitar when recording (not for stereo), but to pickup different parts of the guitar sound, neck, body, over the shouder etc…..

I would instantly recommend Rode for acoustic guitar, NT5 or NT55 which is slightly above your price range and does need 48v phantom power. These get good press for this purpose as well and you will find many reviews in the interweb.

So because your recorder does not have phantom power you have two choices, you add a power supply to supply 48v to the mic or select a condenser mic that operates from batteries

Power supply examples

http://www.musicians...180266000000000


a possible cheaper option

http://www.musicians...180162000001000

I don’t personally do not have any experience of battery powered condenser microphone so would not be happy to make any recommendations


Also have a read of the articles that result from this Google search from sound on sound magazine, they will provide some good background


[url=" http://www.google.co.uk/#hl=en&output=search&sclient=psy-ab&q=sos+recording+acoustic+guitar&oq=sos+record&aq=7v&aqi=g5g-v5&aql=&gs_l=hp.3.7.0l5j0i15l5.1139l5305l1l10113l10l10l0l1l1l0l303l1671l0j7j1j1l9l0.llsin.&psj=1&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.,cf.osb&fp=4dd03c1d0c39eb3c&biw=1120&bih=561"]http://www.google.co.uk/#hl=en&output=search&sclient=psy-ab&q=sos+recording+acoustic+guitar&oq=sos+record&aq=7v&aqi=g5g-v5&aql=&gs_l=hp.3.7.0l5j0i15l5.1139l5305l1l10113l10l10l0l1l1l0l303l1671l0j7j1j1l9l0.llsin.&psj=1&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.,cf.osb&fp=4dd03c1d0c39eb3c&biw=1120&bih=561/url]

Not much direct help but might get you going in the right direct

And the advice as always with mics is buy good from the start or else you will be buying again in 6 months
Madman Greg

#14 User is offline   Mojorule 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 04:11 PM

Aside from T-Bone Burnett and Steve Earle, does anybody use a ribbon mic?

Check out p. 2

#15 User is offline   ritchie69 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 04:27 PM

View Postheymisterk, on 07 April 2012 - 01:44 PM, said:

1. $300.
2. Honestly, at this point, it's not that important.
3. No.


You should consider buying an external preamplifier (who manage also the phantom power)...buy a good mic and use it without a good preamp, it makes little sense...
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#16 User is offline   flatbaroque 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 04:36 PM

I use a Tascam recorder in combination with Shure SM57 and Shure SM58. I'm happy with my results and generally get good feedback on the quality of the recording.I aim the mic at the join of the guitar neck 6-12" away.
And with the Tascam low recorded output volume can be a problem so I use Audacity(free software) to increase the gain on a song to get a better level of volume.

http://soundcloud.co...this-rusty-life

#17 User is offline   ritchie69 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 04:40 PM

View Postflatbaroque, on 07 April 2012 - 04:36 PM, said:

I use a Tascam recorder in combination with Shure SM57 and Shure SM58. I'm happy with my results and generally get good feedback on the quality of the recording.I aim the mic at the join of the guitar neck 6-12" away.
And with the Tascam low recorded output volume can be a problem so I use Audacity(free software) to increase the gain on a song to get a better level of volume.

http://soundcloud.com/you/tracks


your link doesn't work
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#18 User is offline   flatbaroque 

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Posted 07 April 2012 - 04:44 PM

View Postritchie69, on 07 April 2012 - 04:40 PM, said:

your link doesn't work


Thanks...hope i fixed it

#19 User is offline   Madman_Greg 

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Posted 08 April 2012 - 03:08 AM

View Postflatbaroque, on 07 April 2012 - 04:36 PM, said:

I use a Tascam recorder in combination with Shure SM57 and Shure SM58. I'm happy with my results and generally get good feedback on the quality of the recording.I aim the mic at the join of the guitar neck 6-12" away.


Take the grill off of the 58 when you record, you might be pleasantly surpised at the result
Madman Greg

#20 User is offline   Del Nilppeznaf 

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Posted 08 April 2012 - 05:09 AM

Hi,

plenty of mic advice here

One point i would make, if you are not getting decent results with the equipment you have.. a new mic probably won't get you the results your after.
Even a very expensive one.

It's more about mic placement.. reverb and compression techniques when recording... anything really. people often make the classic mistake of thinking an expensive mic is gonna make their recording sound professional, especially on vocals.
while a good mike will certainly pick up more frequencies and a 'truer' fashion ( for want of a better description) it won't magically improve your recordings. The sm58 mic you have working with the basic Tascam recording unit is ample enough to start learning about recording ( and i'd take madman's advice and try it with out the metal grill )
I'd advise investing the money in a computer recording DAW... like MPowered Pro tools or Logic or similar,,, you can get in on the whole recording game pretty cheap nowadays. This will give you things like reverb and compression and other effects to play around with, and learn about recording.

Then maybe invest in another mic later.. is is good to have two.. one on vocals and one on guitar? or even one for a bit of room reverb.

if i was to recomend a good mic for recording guitar..and even percussion/drums it would be
the AKG C1000

( its a small diaphragm condenser mic ( can be run on battery )..which is advisable for recording acoustic guitar.. also good in live situation for guitar/vocals)

it's good for acoustic and electric guitar.. and is some what of an industry standard for an all rounder

should be well below $200

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