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Re: Mic for acoustic guitar recording?

Postby The Elf » Mon Feb 10, 2020 11:59 am

I occasionally use omnis in stereo - particularly if I want to get in close.
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Re: Mic for acoustic guitar recording?

Postby Richard Benn » Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:33 pm

BJG145 wrote:OK, cheers...so, would you use omni mode on these if you were using them for a stereo recording, or would that be to increase their versatility in other applications...? (It's going to be acoustic guitar mainly. A pair of NT55s seems to be double the price at Thomann.)

I have a pair of NT5s plus the omni capsules which you can get separately. I bought the omni capsules because I read in several places that they really suit acoustic guitars. What it took me a long time to realise is that they probably sound great in great rooms (and I think someone further up this thread alluded to that) but in my compromised room they capture all the compromised room sound and made everything worse. Obvious when you think about it but it took me some time to realise this. :headbang:

I now use just the cardioid capsules.

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Re: Mic for acoustic guitar recording?

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Mon Feb 10, 2020 1:07 pm

BJG145 wrote:...so, would you use omni mode on these if you were using them for a stereo recording, or would that be to increase their versatility in other applications...? (It's going to be acoustic guitar mainly.

'Omni mode' is achieved by mechanically swapping the capsules...

Having the option of cardioid or omni capsules dramatically increases the versatility of the mics, and the applications you can use them for and I would argue is a sensible and cost-effective investment to make.

As a rule of thumb, omni capsules tend to sound noticeably more natural, especially at the low end, compared to most cardioids -- something which can be quite obvious on stringed instruments like pianos, violins and guitars etc. Cardioids typically have a slightly unnatural character at the low end which becomes apparent in a direct comparison.

Omnis also usually have a more extended low-end response than the equivalent cardioids, and can be placed close without suffering a proximity effect (bass tip-up).

So if the room acoustics allow it, close miking a guitar with a couple of omnis (12th fret/tail) may well be perceived as sounding more natural than the same mic placement with cardioids IMHO.
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Re: Mic for acoustic guitar recording?

Postby Studio Support Gnome » Tue Feb 11, 2020 12:50 am

Hugh Robjohns wrote:As always, be careful to check 'mono compatibility' when using two (or more) mics.

Spaced mics can sound great in stereo, but when combined in mono the different time-of-arrival of sound to each mic can result in colouration which may or may not be acceptable. If necessary, adjust the position (distance) of one mic until an acceptable mono sound is achieved.


To add a detail or two to my previous post,
While I said they should not be considered or treated as an XY stereo pair, they SHOULD be coincident , (although ORTF type/looking arrangements can work, there is always the danger of odd phase tonality creeping in for the unwary and inexperienced random positioner ) although the angle may vary and the positioning generally, central-ish (which usually means around the point where neck meets body, , NOT usually dead in front of the sound hole... ) a little experimenting to find the most natural balance is usually required.
Hugh is (as always) bang on about Omnis typically sounding more natural with a better low end, however, very few rooms for the home recordist are that nice sounding , and within the context of a mix, rather than a solo piece , much of the low end is often redundant ,


I'm still extremely fond of the GT33 or GT44 for this application. The slightly larger size than a typical SDC diameter capsule gives a slight bit more body than many SDC, but retains more natural presentation than many LDC , and in terms of budget mic's, a slightly better SNR , since small diameter capsules are always at a bit of a disadvantage there...
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Re: Mic for acoustic guitar recording?

Postby DC-Choppah » Tue Feb 11, 2020 4:53 am

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Re: Mic for acoustic guitar recording?

Postby Wonks » Fri Feb 14, 2020 4:06 pm

Useful Rick Beato video on the effect that changing string gauge can have on the sound of an acoustic guitar.

https://youtu.be/7U_v6xpGtjs

Of course, every instrument is different in terms of what is the best sounding gauge for that guitar. You'll probably need to do some truss-rod tweaking to get the best playability out of each different string gauge.

And as I've said before, changing string material type can also have a big effect on the sound of an acoustic guitar.
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Re: Mic for acoustic guitar recording?

Postby Sam Spoons » Fri Feb 14, 2020 4:29 pm

I was surprised how little difference it made. For me the 12's suited that guitar best for strumming but without knowing the pick gauge it's hard to tell*. The 10's and 12's seemed best for picking which is a little odd as you'd expect the changes to be progressive across the gauges.

My Mountain (a Martin D45 clone) sounds best with 13's, My Brian Eastwood was designed with 11's in mind and chokes up with 13s. Gypsy Jazz strings only come in two gauges, 10-45 and 11-46, my Aylward Selmer style works best with the 10's.

* I'm well known for preferring a thicker pick.
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Re: Mic for acoustic guitar recording?

Postby Wonks » Fri Feb 14, 2020 4:36 pm

0.012"s sounded generally best for me as well, though on my old CW it liked light tops and heavy bottoms best.
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