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Double Track Guitar

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Double Track Guitar

Postby JRocker » Thu Jul 12, 2018 7:07 am

Hi,

Hope I'm in right forum was not sure if I should post here in mixing or recording forum...

Have recorded a double track rhythm guitar part. Problem is the second part is not the best so I have tried re-recording numerous times but cannot capture the "essence" and "spirit" of the first take, I always like double tracking as I like to pan my rhythm guitars left and right in stereo spectrum...but is there any way to copy the first part and paste it and make it work like a double tracked part? I remember reading somewhere once that it is possible to do this by adding a slight delay to the second part or just by moving the audio event slight forward...advise please.
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Re: Double Track Guitar

Postby The Elf » Thu Jul 12, 2018 7:56 am

The most common method for adding a fake double is to add a short delay to the original audio. The original and the delayed parts are then often panned at opposite sides of the mix to enhance the illusion and to add width to the mix.

You can simply copy the original and delay the copy by moving it in your DAW, or you can use a delay processor (hardware, or plug-in). I would begin with a delay of 10ms and adjust it to taste - much more than 25ms and you will begin the hear the 'double' as a slap echo.

You can further enhance the technique by applying a slight pitch shift, or modulation to the copy. There are plug-ins (e.g. Waves' 'Doubler', or Boz Labs' 'Imperial Delay') that allow for all of this in the one package.
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Re: Double Track Guitar

Postby CS70 » Thu Jul 12, 2018 7:59 am

Yes, you can delay the part a few ms (or nudge it forward, it’s exactly the same) and add a pitch shifter tuned to a few cents of difference. An auto-tuning pass also works. It gets you a chorusy feel. Whether or not it sounds how you want depends on the track but there’s no harm in trying.
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Re: Double Track Guitar

Postby Sam Inglis » Thu Jul 12, 2018 8:45 am

What I generally do in this situation is create a fake double by duplicating the original track and then re-ordering it, for instance by swapping the guitar from verse 1 and verse 2, chorus 1 and chorus 2, and so on. As long as they're recorded to a click, most songs have enough repetition to make this possible with a bit of imagination! To my ears this sounds a lot more natural than any ADT or doubling effect.
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Re: Double Track Guitar

Postby Darren Lynch » Thu Jul 12, 2018 12:41 pm

Sam Inglis wrote:What I generally do in this situation is create a fake double by duplicating the original track and then re-ordering it, for instance by swapping the guitar from verse 1 and verse 2, chorus 1 and chorus 2, and so on. As long as they're recorded to a click, most songs have enough repetition to make this possible with a bit of imagination! To my ears this sounds a lot more natural than any ADT or doubling effect.

I have used the delayed track option often, or used Logic's Sample Delay for the same purpose. However, beware - this effect needs a percussive element (essentially a guitar strum) to make the brain think it is hearing two distinct events. On sustained guitar parts, you'll hear the two signals drift back together. Try it and see (hear) for yourself. Sam's suggestion will eliminate this, because running a reordered guitar track alongside the original track features genuine events happening at different points in time and with subtly different tonality.

It is worth establishing a couple of fake double track techniques which work for you. As the OP mentions, sometimes a mono guitar track is just too damn good to repeat with precision. In fact, it's probably the lack the precision which makes it good in the first place!
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Re: Double Track Guitar

Postby andrushkiwt » Thu Jul 12, 2018 8:14 pm

Playing it again is your best option, though you can certainly do the above methods regarding playing with delay and time. If it's a chord-heavy rhythm section, try playing it slightly different - move up the neck or detune and play the chords transposed. It gives a nice change in tone while staying cohesive.
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Re: Double Track Guitar

Postby Terrible.dee » Thu Jul 12, 2018 8:59 pm

Dude...listen to your ears!

DON'T DOUBLE IT

Today people feel obliged to "double this" "Triple that" "Layer these"

NO! YOU DON'T NEED TO DO ANY OF THAT!

If it sounds "right" with one guitar then your ears are telling you "That's it! We're good!"

LISTEN to them
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Re: Double Track Guitar

Postby JRocker » Thu Jul 12, 2018 11:39 pm

Thank you all for the advice and replies, much appreciated and very helpful. Cheers.
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Re: Double Track Guitar

Postby Martin Walker » Fri Jul 13, 2018 3:43 pm

Terrible.dee wrote:Dude...listen to your ears!

DON'T DOUBLE IT

Today people feel obliged to "double this" "Triple that" "Layer these"

NO! YOU DON'T NEED TO DO ANY OF THAT!

If it sounds "right" with one guitar then your ears are telling you "That's it! We're good!"

LISTEN to them

I LIKE that advice a lot Terrible.dee - I suspect you should change your moniker to Helpful.dee :clap:


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Re: Double Track Guitar

Postby mick.n » Fri Jul 27, 2018 7:31 pm

Would Sound toys micro shift be a good tool for this?
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Re: Double Track Guitar

Postby 24Fretz » Fri Jul 27, 2018 11:42 pm

Sam Inglis wrote:What I generally do in this situation is create a fake double by duplicating the original track and then re-ordering it, for instance by swapping the guitar from verse 1 and verse 2, chorus 1 and chorus 2, and so on. As long as they're recorded to a click, most songs have enough repetition to make this possible with a bit of imagination! To my ears this sounds a lot more natural than any ADT or doubling effect.

I agree with this.

And doubling with delay never sounds good to my ears. You just get a phasey sounding version because of the comb filter effect, which makes it less punchy. Probably the opposite of what you want.
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Re: Double Track Guitar

Postby CS70 » Sat Jul 28, 2018 8:18 pm

Not necessarily! Agree that there’s better ways nowadays using a DAW cut&paste capabilities (such as Sam's) but doubling is a tried and tested technique which usually involves also a delay on one of the tracks with a few cents of pitch shifting.

By varying the delay time with a knob and listening you can most often find a sweet spot where the filtering that occurs is actually pleasant.
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Re: Double Track Guitar

Postby Humble Bee » Sun Jul 29, 2018 3:50 pm

It's two different things really.
Fake doubling with a delay or nudging a copy a bit is very clean and more of a chorus effect. For this I like the UAD Cooper Timecube when mixing. Live I use the Strymon deco.
Laying down a second guitar track gives a more realistic sound of two separate guitarists playing the same part. It's more lively and fat (think Hellacopters f.ex) good for up tempo harder rock... and it doesn't have to be spot on. It actually sounds more groovy if the two are not 100% tight... and don't pan all the way apart to keep it more in your face up the middle.
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