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  1. #1
    Eruption
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    Default Amp mic'ing tips

    I've got a 5150 combo that I'm trying to record onto my computer. I'm using a Shure SM57 and I've tried positioning it differently, but I'm still getting a tone that's very dry and harsh, not smooth at all. I'm only running a Boss delay pedal in the loop, other than that it's just my Wolfgang into the 5150 and that's it, HOWEVER, I experimented with my Line 6 POD in the effects loop and I've gotten a much smoother recorded tone...but it's way too "compressed" sounding (even bypassing all effects and setting the drive as low as possible) and it also sounds like I'm losing some signal possibly. Are there any tips out there for smoothing out the amp and capturing that sound on tape? I've played guitar for almost 10 years now, but I'm pretty new to mic'ing an amp, I've always just recorded with my POD, but I like the tone of my 5150 way better obviously, and I'd like to use it when possible.

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    A 57 has definitely been the go-to mic for amp recording, but I've been staying away from it for several years now because of that very harshness you're talking about. With high gain stuff, to me, it never really delivered enough lows, and the high mids got very "crunchy."

    I've had a lot of luck running a vintage AKG 451 (it has just been re-issued) stright on the cone, about two inches back from the screen, with all my 5150s. Run through some sort of tube pre-amp, and your tone should improve significantly.

    Also experiment with the EQ settings on your amp. Unfortunately what sounds good in a room does not always sound as good through a mic. If you need more/less highs, dial it in/out of the amp. Push your lows if you're using the 57, etc.

  3. #3
    Hot For Teacher danward5150's Avatar
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    I've done some recording with my 5150 combo. The key first is to make sure the tone coming out of the amp is happening and be sure to listen to the speakers directly because that's what the mic will "hear".

    In terms of mics I've used a Shure Beta 58. Little warmer than the 57 and only a little more expensive. I place it so it's directed at the edge of the cone.

    Have to agree on the tube pre-amp. The more warmth you can put on it before putting in to a cold digitial PC the better.

  4. #4
    Good Enough nobozos's Avatar
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    For a decent sounding tone from a 57, position the mic about an inch away from the grill cloth. Point it at the cone halfway between the voice coil and the edge of the speaker in a way so that the face of the mic is parallel with the cone surface you are pointing it at. It will be at an odd looking angle, but it sounds better.

    One thing I tried that seemed to work pretty well was when I positioned my 57 as described above, and a bass drum mic about two feet away from the front of the amp. Sounded pretty bad ass.
    "Having an opinion that people disagree with doesn't make you a Douche, arguing with the people who disagree with your opinion and calling them stupid does!" -Me.

  5. #5
    Eruption
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    Thanks for the response guys, what's a decent tube preamp that you would recommend?

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    Quote Originally Posted by bcgvh View Post
    Thanks for the response guys, what's a decent tube preamp that you would recommend?
    I just completed my part on the new Guitar Room jam all at home--through an ART TPS I bought off eBay for about $90. It's a cheap one, but I'm amazed at how good it sounds. In general ART stuff is a lot of quality for the buck.

    In my "big studio" I use Demeter, Focusrite, Avalon, and DBX pre-amps (among others). Those venture into the hundreds/thousands of dollars range, however.

  7. #7
    Good Enough nobozos's Avatar
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    Mesa Triaxis is awesome. The Mesa Quad is older, and you could probably find a used one relatively cheap. The Quad is pretty bad-ass too.
    "Having an opinion that people disagree with doesn't make you a Douche, arguing with the people who disagree with your opinion and calling them stupid does!" -Me.

  8. #8
    Eruption
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    Quote Originally Posted by bcgvh View Post
    Thanks for the response guys, what's a decent tube preamp that you would recommend?
    Groove Tube Brick

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by bcgvh View Post
    I've got a 5150 combo that I'm trying to record onto my computer. I'm using a Shure SM57 and I've tried positioning it differently, but I'm still getting a tone that's very dry and harsh, not smooth at all. I'm only running a Boss delay pedal in the loop, other than that it's just my Wolfgang into the 5150 and that's it, HOWEVER, I experimented with my Line 6 POD in the effects loop and I've gotten a much smoother recorded tone...but it's way too "compressed" sounding (even bypassing all effects and setting the drive as low as possible) and it also sounds like I'm losing some signal possibly. Are there any tips out there for smoothing out the amp and capturing that sound on tape? I've played guitar for almost 10 years now, but I'm pretty new to mic'ing an amp, I've always just recorded with my POD, but I like the tone of my 5150 way better obviously, and I'd like to use it when possible.
    Place the mic in the center of one of the speakers. Move it away from the amp about 10" or more to your taste. Oh and of course crank the amp as loud as possible and adjust your levels so they are around -12 peaking @ -6.
    When you mix I recommend using renaissance axe by waves as a compression. The Pultec eq's are awesome.
    hope this helps you.
    Martin

  10. #10
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    When I record I use an SM57 about an inch from the speaker, were ever the sweet spot is. Then I use a condenser (Rode NT1-A) about 5 ft. back from the cab. The SM57 gives me that real good warm tone, while the NT1-A gives me the sweet and clear tone. I am pretty sure this is how Ed got his Balance and Me Wise Magic tone. And those are my favorite tones of all time.

  11. #11
    Romeo Delight
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    Quote Originally Posted by MavickMusic View Post
    When I record I use an SM57 about an inch from the speaker, were ever the sweet spot is. Then I use a condenser (Rode NT1-A) about 5 ft. back from the cab. The SM57 gives me that real good warm tone, while the NT1-A gives me the sweet and clear tone. I am pretty sure this is how Ed got his Balance and Me Wise Magic tone. And those are my favorite tones of all time.

    I was pretty much just going to suggest this too, the near/far mic technique seems to work best for me too

 

 

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