View Full Version : Leakage Looney!!!!!
04-02-2004, 02:24 PM
Hey, I have yet another question for this all-mighty forum. I have a bedroom recording studio and m currently working on a important project. I usually throw a couple mics in front of a 4x12 cab and just track guitars that way, but here's the prolem: the guitarist plays in about 5-6 feet away from the cab in the same room, so no matter what he plays the damn mics on the cab pick up the acoustical strumming from the guitar. So everytime I go back to listen to a track you can hear his damn pick strumming the guitar, when all I want is what's coming from the cab. I can't isolate it, it's nearly impossible, unless the guitarist is in a totally different room from the mics. What do I do??? I always see videos of big time bands in the studio. where the guitarist is in a very small, isolated tracking room where he has only a few feet between him and the miked cab, so those mics should pick up every strum of the pick on the strings, how do they get away with it??? Maybe a gate??? Help!
04-02-2004, 05:29 PM
TURN THE AMPS UP!!!
try to think about it as a signal to noise ratio kind of thing. The mic'd cab is the "signal", and the picking is the "noise". So try to achieve the highest signal to noise ratio without offending neighbors. Or simply put, turn up the amp. you should also make sure that the mic isn't facing both the guitarist, and the cab...i.e. the guitarist should be standing behind the mic...(in it's null pattern for cardiod)
Your other alternative is simply to take a set of headphones into another room and have the guitarist play in there. (Although, I do know of a couple guitarists who simply DO NOT play well unless they're standing in front of their massive stacks. I'm thinking it's either Comfort or Ego.)
04-03-2004, 01:17 AM
Are you using omni's?
You might want to try and get the guitarist to face away from the cab's and if needed you could put some kinda gobo between him and the cab..maybe a mattress if you have to..or some cardboard "wall".
If you're using omni's then try cardoids as the rear rejection will eliminate this...
04-03-2004, 02:00 AM
Well, the amp is already turned up pretty loud, so I'm not sure that will totally solvethe problem, but I will add a little more volume to it just to see. I have been currently micing the cab with a 57 and Rode NTK and those are both cardiod I believe, so there is no problem with mic pattern. I know I can try to but a gobo type wall between the guitarist and the cab, but it is quite a hassle and very hard to work around in one, small room. So what next??? How do the big-timers do it in their small iso booths at major studios??? Just crank it to 10 and voila, no more strumming sounds in the mix???
04-03-2004, 02:18 AM
Yeah..cranked to 11 works, and usually the guitarist is standing somewhere that the mic's don't pick it up. Maybe tell your guitarist to chill on his strumming, the volume will be lower but you can turn the amp up some more to compensate. Or you could get a longer 1/4" cable and have him stand further away, facing away from the cab in front of it....
04-04-2004, 12:57 PM
Are you sure it's the cab mics picking up the strumming and not an open mic somewhere near the strumming guitar, like a vocal mic?
04-04-2004, 08:49 PM
Yeah I'm sure, I only have two mics on the cab and that's it, no other mics in the room at all.
04-05-2004, 01:24 AM
Have you tried another take yet?......
04-05-2004, 09:26 PM
Build a plywood box that will fit over the gt cab/mic stand and line it with foam or something that can help deaden the sound. This of course is easier if you have a shorty mic stand and small amp. Then crank it up, as others have mentioned.
04-06-2004, 07:41 AM
I think every persons idea of what "loud" is must vary quite a bit. I have never had a problem with pick noise acoustically being picked up on an electric guitar track. Even when the amps have been at a low/medium volume. I have had guitar players standing 5 feet from their cabinet with one mic being placed 3 feet from the cabinet, and one in the grill. In fact, usually my problem is the opposite. usually, I have to cut all the guitar mics from the headphones and crank the rest of the mix up just so the guitar player can hear something besides drums. I am currently working with an aggresive blues rock band. The guitar player has a Mesa Boogie 2x12 and without cranking that thing up all the way I have already blown several filaments in light bulbs cause that thing is so full and opens up so easily. :smokin:
04-06-2004, 11:30 AM
It just doesn't seem right. I am about 5-6 feet away for the two mics on the cab, now why wouldn't those mics pick up the strumming sound??? They are so close that if they didn't pick it up I would be frightened that they might me the least hot mics on the planet. At low volume they difinitely pick up the strumming easily, especiallt the large condenser because it's so sensitive to sound, that thing can pick up a conversation the next room over though the wall, so pickung up strumming in the same room is a given. But I still don't know whyI am having such a huge problem , when others say it's not a big issue for them in my same situation. Thanks.
04-06-2004, 01:06 PM
I didn't mean that they didn't pick up the sound, but the the signal (amplifier) to noise (actual strumming) was so great that the strumming wasn't audible. If the amp is quiet enough, then you would have to crank the gain up on the mics to achieve your optimal recording level. This would increase the amount of strumming. Turn the amp up and the channel gain will go down on the mic which would deemphasize the strumming. Like I said, I think our viewpoints on what a loud amp is and isn't are quite different.
04-06-2004, 01:47 PM
Can you stick the cab in a closet or something like that? Maybe wire a 1/4" cable through a wall or under a door and stick the guitar player in another room.
I don't mean to insult you or anything, but are you sure you're LD condensor is facing the right direction? You also might be getting reflections from the strumming bouncing off a wall and coming around to the mic.
04-06-2004, 07:41 PM
Yeah, basically it seem sthat I just need to compensate by adding more volume at the amp source and less gain from the pre's. I am pretty sure I have the condensor facing the right direction becasue I have ehard how it sounds facing the opposite direction, it's horrible, so I would say definitely yes.
04-06-2004, 08:52 PM
To check you can snap your fingers on either side and whichever side is the loudest will be the on axis side (front side).
Let me know if you get it sorted out...I hate it when there's problems and they don't get worked out...
04-07-2004, 09:22 AM
Hey, I did a whole session once out of the back of my NTK...
The singer wasn't that great, anyway, and he was only doing BGV's... But I got done, and said "man, that sounds really dark... Aw, crap."
We just didn't use his vox. :-)
Which may sound cool on a guitar track.
The front of the NTK is the side w/ the gold dot.
04-07-2004, 02:54 PM
I may have read wrong, or maybe it was a typo, but did you say the mics were 5-6 feet from the Gt cab, or 5-6 feet from the Gt player? If they are 5-6 feet from the cab, then that is your problem. Again, I may have mis read/mis understood.
04-13-2004, 09:05 PM
i built a couple of little plywood boxes laced with carpet.a room inside a room.about 4 foot tall ,5 foot wide ,and 3 foot deep with a door that i put a strap on to shut.and keep the door shut at all times when recording unless the person wants feedback.i can crank the amp pretty loud and not leak on the drums or vice versa.
04-14-2004, 08:13 AM
Yet again, loud seems to be different for each person:D I had a cab the other day that was in the vocal booth, through two doors, double thick walls with soundboard on them, and about 15 or more feet (and facing the other way) from my nearest drum mic. I still had some bleed. You just can't stop a big Marshall or Mesa stack:smokin:
04-14-2004, 01:58 PM
x static did you have the amp in in little box laced with carpet?were the doors shut good?well anyway we can only do what we can do ya know.it works good for me always.i have my drums in a different room than my amp thats in in room inside a room.sure you can here the amp muffled a little bit outside but its still ok to me.
04-14-2004, 03:40 PM
Nope. I need a larger sound than a little box will provide. Not that i mind a little bleed, but I have had plenty of amps loud enough to break filaments in lightbulbs:D
04-14-2004, 10:13 PM
xstatic, were you the one wanting to use a mesa road king as a recording amp a while back?
I had to deal with one of your kind a few days ago at a session. Dust wasn't literally falling from the ceiling, but a good portion of the studio was rattling. And that rattling bled into the guitar mics, if you would believe that. Even a 50 watter into a 4x12 is workable, but 200 tube watts is just not conducive to recording, imo. But there are plenty of people pulling it off, so who am i to judge.
04-14-2004, 11:20 PM
thats what i got.a 50 watt marshall into a 4x12 cab.it sounds good i guess.in that box i have to apply reverb though cause its dry as a bone.anyway x-static i was givin the guy an option ya know. i personal like to layer my guitars for bigness and i definately like the option of havin to add the reverb rather than fight frequencies in a room that are bad sometimes.anyway im no noit all,thats for sure.
04-15-2004, 09:05 AM
I defiantely do not believe that an amp has to be big and loud to get a good, fat, rich tone. However, if you work with a lot of of heavy or aggressive rock bands, you will likely spend more time than its worth trying to convince them of that, and still end up having to do it. Also, if the guitar player is in the same room with a cab that is that loud, then it really does change their guitar tone a lot , and in ways that often can't be replicated. There is absolutely nothing wrong with isolating a cabinet either. There is no right and wrong way to record things. There is only what sounds good, and what doesn't. Even with the big cabinets though, we still do a lot of layering. When I commented about needing a larger sound than a little box would provide, I really didn't mean that it wasn't a viable option, but meant that in the case that I was refferring to it wasn't an option. Many of the guitar players I work with need to have their amp open and available to them (feedback, harmonic structure etc....)
One of the loudest guitar amps I have ever recorded was a Mesa Boogie FA100 rectified head with a Mesa Boggie 2x12. I had a hard time getting the headphones up loud enough for the guitar player to hear the tracks. He was a really big tone junky and his sounds are amazing. Luckily he is also really cool and decided to live with the headphone problem and was very understanding about the physics involved with little headphones keeping up with his guitar amp and he never complained. Instead he accepted it and layed some killer tracks. As far as a Road King goes, I would love to have one in the studio. Not because it is so high powered, but more because it is very flexible, and has LOTS of tubes. I am a big fan of pulling tubes, and mismatching tubes temporarily to get some different tones. Plus, most Mesa amps have power pads on them. They don't sound quite as good to me, but still sound better than most amps.
The real point of my last post though was to point out how the word "Loud" is so very subjective. The example I gave was just so people could see what I meant by loud rather than what someone else meant. In the case I described above, you could have put a LD condenser about 6 feet from the cab. You then could have put the guitar player half way inbetween the cab and the mic, facing the mic. You probably still wouldn't have been able to pick up his strumming hardly at all. Technically, it would be there, but realistically it would probably never have been audible over the actual amp sound.
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