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January Clearance 2017

Barry’s Guide to Recording Guitars – Using Hallways for a Big Stereo Sound

Here’s a miking technique capable of producing brilliant sounds that can spark your recording process on to new levels of innovation and excellence. It requires a space with a hallway and two rooms off it, forming a “T” with the bottom of the “T” being the beginning of the hallway, and either side of the top of the “T” being the two rooms. If your home has a hallway with two bedrooms or bathrooms on either side, then you are in business. We’ll also need a guitar amp, three microphones, and some experimentation.

First, position the amp at the beginning or open end of the hallway facing towards the two rooms. (Amp at the bottom of the “T”.) Next, put a mic (preferably a condenser mic) in each of the two rooms off the hallway (top of the “T”) and open the doors of each room. Finally, close mic the amp and run all three mics into your mixer or DAW. This technique will still work even if you only have two mics – just use one of the rooms off the hallway. Now, pan the close mic to the center and the rooms mics hard left and right. This results in a very big live sound. The farther the amp is from the room, the bigger the sound. If your amp goes to eleven, use it. Actually, the amp needs to be loud enough to fill both rooms for this to work. Once you’re set up and the levels are good, you should hear a very interesting stereo sound. Blend the center and the room mics until you have just enough room and enough direct sound.

It can be difficult to get that perfectly blended electric guitar sound. Experimentation with microphone techniques can really help solve some problems. The key factors involved in shaping guitar sounds are the raw sound from the instrument, choice of effects and acoustical interaction of the sound in the room. There’s much room for creativity here. Start practicing and building your own arsenal of techniques that you like. This kind of experimentation can yield amazing results that will bring your recordings a cut above the rest.

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