Whenever you start recording, remember that one of the most important things to take note is the microphone placement. The exact placement of your microphone is decided by the type of music you are about to record. Most engineers and musicians tend to place their microphones in a way that enables them to capture a good and balanced view of the instruments used and the music played.
Acoustic guitar recording is a unique class in its own and even within this particular instrument, many different genres can be covered. In order to make your acoustic recording sound great, not only do you have to play the instrument well but you also would have to get it recorded well.
In this article we will take you through some of the common types of music you would be playing with your guitar and teach you what kind of microphone placement would suit each type so that you can carry out a simple yet excellent acoustic guitar recording.
The Blumlein configuration
This is a particular type of microphone configuration that works well with most acoustic recordings. Having the Blumlein configuration involves you to use two two-directional microphones at a right angle to each other. Such Bi-directional microphones catch the signals that are coming from the front and back of them so that surrounding and background noise in the room plays an important role in recording the sound. Most of these microphones come in a shape that they look the number 8. If they don’t look as such, then they can be switched to look as such pretty easily.
All you have to make sure is that you get these two microphones at right angles to each other and pretty close to each other. But make sure that the two bi-directional microphones don’t actually touch each other. The tiny capsules on the microphones have to be as close by to each other as possible but they should not touch each other at all. Also note that the right angle they should be at is at a right angle to face the source of sound, in this case your acoustic guitar.
What happens when you use this set up is that your music played from the acoustic guitar tends to come off as a wide range and a clear signal to the microphones which allows the balance to be reached with most of the sound waves being captured. This works exceptionally well in a small and quiet room, as we have mentioned before, for this set up, a quiet room is important. This set up’s sound works well with stereo or mono mode and is even good when it is mixed.
A big diaphragm condenser close microphone
This set up needs you to place a big diaphragm condenser to face the region in between the sound hole and the top of the fret board of your acoustic guitar. Then set your microphone to a Cardioid polar pattern mode so that any surrounding environmental noise that is coming behind the microphone is reduced. Use Cardioid focus on your microphone to just hold the signals that are coming from the front of the microphone.
This type of a setting allows only a narrow range of outputs to be produced, for example, through the stereo configuration. It would be great if your piece involves a lot of low notes because this microphone picks up on low notes really well and helps your music attain a thick and rocky sound effect. It would also be good for pieces where there are two guitars playing two different sounds at the same time.
A small diaphragm condenser close microphone
This configuration requires you to place your microphones on a mid-side placement. This output works really well with different output signals of the mono route, like the LDC and the SDC mono routes. The small diaphragm works well with condensing music to make it brighter to help you with thick pieces and layered tunes.
Vertically spaced pairing
This is one of the best ways to configure your microphones before your acoustic recording. All you have to do is to place two SDC microphones in a vertical fashion, about 7 inches away from each other. The microphone on the bottom should have its capsules pointing directly at the bottom three strings of your acoustic guitar. The top microphone thus aims the top three strings of the guitar. This way, you are angling your microphones inwards to balance both the high and low notes that are being played. You cover gaps this way and you would not have any gaps in the music played. It covers almost the whole range of your music piece.
Working with such complex configurations can be a headache, but with our help, you can get the best effects for your live recordings in Melbourne. Call us now, The Band Booth, to find out more!