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Mic Preamp for Acoustic Guitar
Old 23rd November 2009 | Show parent
  #91
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David R.'s Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
There are so many variables before you get to the pre. The player, what style, is it solo or will it be in a mix (prominent, background, effected), the mics, the room...

In my mind, these are all questions to be asked before choosing the pre. If you figure this stuff out, then the right kind of pre will seem like an obvious choice, if you know the sound of what you have or what you are shopping for.

That's my 2 cents. Get yourself about 119,800 more of them and get yourself a pre.
Old 24th November 2009 | Show parent
  #92
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chunky But Funky ➑️
Does anyone else find it strange we are recommending $6,000 to $10,000 signal chains to record a $250 guitar with plywood sides and back? I guess my suggestion would be to buy a used $2,000 to $3,000 acoustic (Gibson, Martin, Collings, Bourgeois, Huss & Dalton...etc) and mic it with Josephson C42's or DPA 4090's or even AT Pro 37's (on the cheap) through John Hardy pre's. My 2 cents...and probably worth about that!

Doug


thumbsup yes, no point in investing in recording gear if your instument is not sounding good in the frst place.
Old 26th November 2009 | Show parent
  #93
Lives for gear
 
KevWind's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by David R. ➑️
There are so many variables before you get to the pre. The player, what style, is it solo or will it be in a mix (prominent, background, effected), the mics, the room...
I believe the op said mostly background and lead riffs between vocals

Quote:
In my mind, these are all questions to be asked before choosing the pre. If you figure this stuff out, then the right kind of pre will seem like an obvious choice, if you know the sound of what you have or what you are shopping for.
I have a question though , couldn't one still choose to use more or less the same mic/s and pre (if you liked the sound ) weather it was for featuring the acoustic, or placing in a larger mix ??
Old 20th April 2011 | Show parent
  #94
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
Acoustic Guitar Preamps

I like Raindirk Preamps (RM8) and stereo AEA R84s or Neumann 184 pairs. Raindirk pres are great with guitars...ones that sound good anyway. I've gotten great results with a Neve 1073 and a Rode K2 with a mullard and the regular chinese tube (chinese was brighter, mullard really had some warm creamy goodness).

Great guitar (and guitar player) are of course key...actually a mediocre guitarist and a great guitar will still sound pretty dope with these pres.
Old 20th April 2011 | Show parent
  #95
Lives for gear
 
AllBread's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I've gottennstunning results recently using a ksm-32 on a couple of different sessions. Once through the ssl board press andbonce through a chandler tg channel for some mean playing. It's amazing the results you get when your working fast and just have to grab whatever is already on a stand and wired to the patch bay for a quick overdub. To me, that's the real skill of engineering - being able to use whats on hand to make it work even if your preferred mic is only 20 feetnaway in the mic locker.
Old 20th April 2011 | Show parent
  #96
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by AllBread ➑️
...It's amazing the results you get when your working fast and just have to grab whatever is already on a stand and wired to the patch bay for a quick overdub. To me, that's the real skill of engineering - being able to use whats on hand to make it work even if your preferred mic is only 20 feetnaway in the mic locker.
In my case that's known as "laziness."
Old 21st April 2011 | Show parent
  #97
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
It All Depends on the Application & Guitar

Aloha Friends,

It's time to play, "This Old Thread!"

"Favorite" all depends on the application, room, guitar, player & attack & style of music & my ears changing from day to day.

I'm a player who records at home - nice treated studio. Mic & pre choices for my simple recordings (acoustic guitar & other instruments plus vocals).

After gigging for 50 years, I'm strictly a hobbyist, but I care about acoustic sound & now recordings a lot because I love the acoustic guitar so much. I have made more than 200 of them, including my own.

Four pre's that I own & really like are: Great River MP-2NV, A Designs Pacifica, Pendulum SPS-1 (my live pre) & the MDP-1 Tube. Each brings different qualities to the table to bring out the best in the different qualities of my mic's.

For fingerstyle, it doesn't get any better than a matched pair of Schoeps CMC641 supercardioids, my "go to" mic's for that app. Smoothest, most detailed & accurate, great off-axis, quiet, forgiving of bad rooms, did I say smooth? You get much more than you pay for with Schoeps.

I often add a pair of vintage U87's if I want more room in a four channel mix: spaced pairs a few feet out w/ the Schoeps closer in X-Y (about 12-16").

For strumming tracks it's clear-cut to my ears: the Mojave MA-200 tube cardioid. Better than the U87's, IMO. It has that wide open, jangly clear acoustic sound we all love. Sounds really great on 12-strings. The MA-200 also won my voice's vote for favorite vocal studio mic.

For M-S, I like a CMC641 with an AEA R84 ribbon mic, or a pair of 641's, but with one having as MK8 ribbon cap. Both work great.

I have three other great pairs of SDC's that I use for different sounds & instruments: Peluso P-28 SDC tubes, JW-modded AKG 460 SDC's, & ADK A6 MDC's - cheap, but real sleepers that sound killer on acoustic guitar.

My current favorite (it changes from time to time like my ears) combo is a pair of 641's with the Pendulum MDP-1 tube. Name your superlatives to describe that combo. But the A-Designs Pacifica is a close second among my pre's.

Of course, the most important variable for maximizing ANY great mic/pre combo absolutely is GREAT ROOM TREATMENT! If your room is crap, then why spend on better combo's?

Just one acoustic player's opinion. Man, you guys had some amazing stuff - back in '09!!

alohachris
Old 21st April 2011 | Show parent
  #98
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swafford's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
If I was the OP and price was no object, I'd buy a better guitar.
Old 21st April 2011 | Show parent
  #99
Lives for gear
 
Ephi82's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Studio Addict ➑️
Whatever you have. What a stupid question.

By the end of this thread (like in every other "what's best" thread), every known mic and pre will be mentioned, so that obviously means there is no "right" or "best" one. Just turn the knobs til it sounds good and move on.
I was kind of thinking the same thing....

Like recording vocals, when tracking an acoustic, this is my priority

The quality of the instrument 30% (you cant make a $200 guitar sound like a Martin)
The ability of the musician 30% (superior tone is in the fingers, not just the wood)
The room 10% (great room: super! bad room, isolate if you can)
The mic(s) and mic placement 25% (you have to be pretty picky about what mic best captures the complexities of an acoustic instrument)
The pre amp 5% (Give me clean gain. Do you want to "color" the sound of a well played, well miked instrument like this? Make no mistake, better quality pre provides better tracking, but its lower on the list IMO)
Old 22nd April 2011 | Show parent
  #100
Lives for gear
 
KevWind's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by swafford ➑️
If I was the OP and price was no object, I'd buy a better guitar.
++++ 1111 thumbsup
Old 18th May 2011 | Show parent
  #101
Gear Maniac
 
catfishmusic's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by swafford ➑️
if i was the op and price was no object, i'd buy a better guitar.
+1,000,000.
Old 18th May 2011
  #102
Gear Maniac
 
5 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
it's aq 2 channel unit, but i'd get the a designs pacifica pre (solid state unit with sweet sound) and a pair of peluso p28 small-diaghragm tube mics.

have watched many video demos on soundpure's youtube site, and the best sounds on acoustic guitar were through the pacifica, with various mics.
Old 18th May 2011 | Show parent
  #103
Gear Maniac
 
5 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
i'd get the a designs pacifica pre (solid state unit with sweet sound) and a pair of peluso p28 small-diaghragm tube mics.

have watched many video demos on soundpure's youtube site, and the best sounds on acoustic guitar were through the pacifica, with various mics.
Old 18th May 2011
  #104
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwleeman ➑️
What mic + mic pre combo would you recommend for recording acoustic guitar ?
I'd use a ms technique with a 414 and a u87 running through the grace m801
Old 18th May 2011 | Show parent
  #105
Gear Maniac
 
M.o.T.s's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4blades ➑️
My favourite setup is a Shoeps cmc-5 into Qes Labs Preq-1, it's a tube channel strip with a mic pre and a pultec style eq, and it comes handy all of the time.
Other fav mics include KM84 U-87 and C-414.
Looks nice!
Do you have some clip to illustrate?
Old 18th May 2011 | Show parent
  #106
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Tone Laborer's Avatar
 
2 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams ➑️
Wood is wood. Sometimes you get good wood in cheapos, sometimes poor woods in pricy guitars.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
wha??


Decent cheap guitars are more common than they used to be thanks to modern manufacturing, and there's always times where this might beat that, but c'mon, wood is wood?? Maybe for your porch swing but not for acoustic guitars.

Thin, quality tone woods make a huge difference in a recording guitar. If you've found them cheap, umm, well that's goes against my experience. `

OTOH, I did get to hear, courtesy of Mike Jasper, a Mercenary KM69 thru an Audio Upgrades High Speed pre on acoustic--jaw dropping and monumental.

He was using a cheap ass Collings.
Old 19th May 2011 | Show parent
  #107
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NoEgo's Avatar
 
4 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tone Laborer ➑️
wha??


Decent cheap guitars are more common than they used to be thanks to modern manufacturing, and there's always times where this might beat that, but c'mon, wood is wood?? Maybe for your porch swing but not for acoustic guitars.

Thin, quality tone woods make a huge difference in a recording guitar. If you've found them cheap, umm, well that's goes against my experience. `

OTOH, I did get to hear, courtesy of Mike Jasper, a Mercenary KM69 thru an Audio Upgrades High Speed pre on acoustic--jaw dropping and monumental.

He was using a cheap ass Collings.
This Audio Upgrades thing is climbing the charts. That good huh? Wait no I am thinking of the Upstate Audio. I have seen a lot about this pre.
I think so far what I have run across, the best acoustic guitar pre for the natural tone of the guitar is the Forssell SMP2. It puts you there. Next the Buzz Audio MA2.2. Tx
With KM84's or U87 or combo of both. That is as long as you don't want iron add ons or tube add ons. My Opinion.
Old 19th May 2011 | Show parent
  #108
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoEgo ➑️
I think so far what I have run across, the best acoustic guitar pre for the natural tone of the guitar is the Forssell SMP2. It puts you there. Next the Buzz Audio MA2.2. Tx
Haven't used a Forsell, but I can confirm that the MA-2.2 is pretty great when you're looking for reality. Paired with a couple of Jim's modded 460b's with omni capsules, classical or flamenco guitar are sweet, with zero squashed transients. Most of the time I'm not looking for that much reality, though, and still opt for the Pacifica. I wouldn't call it hyped, but definitely a bit "bigger than life."
Old 19th May 2011 | Show parent
  #109
Here for the gear
 
Netigy's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwleeman ➑️
well.. ain't got a lot.. i just have a millennia media 4-channel hv3d, and am planning on getting an aurora audio GTQ2 mkII soon.
That's a GREAT amp; accurate without much color. Depending on what you are looking for with the recording sound, if accurate is your objective, then you've got the amp question figured out already.

Put any one of a dozen quality condensor mics off the 12th fret about 8 inches and you're golden. You can always EQ and compress it to your taste ITB. For mic suggestions, you already know the answer. On the budget side, a SM-81 sounds GREAT. If you've got cash, and don't want to compromise, go with the Schoeps CMC64 Set (CMC6 Amp with the MK4 Cardioid Capsule). Here's a little info on the condenser size of your mic choice for recording. You decide, of course, which type you prefer.

With condenser microphones, you'll find two different types: small diaphragm, and large diaphragm.

Large Diaphragm Microphones - Large diaphragm microphones (LDMs) are generally the choice for studio vocals, and any instrument recording where a more "deep" sound is desired. A large diaphragm microphone generally warms up the sound of what it's recording, which also leads to the myth that most LDMs reproduce low frequencies better than small diaphragm mics; this isn't true, in fact, small diaphragm mics are much better at reproducing everything evenly, including bass. You'll want a pop screen if using a condenser microphone for vocals; they're so sensitive to transient noises that the "P" and "SH" sounds you make will cause distortion.

Small Diaphragm Microphones - Small diaphragm microphones (SDMs) are generally the best choice where you want a solid, wide frequency response and the best transient response, which as we mentioned before, is the ability for your microphone to reproduce fast sounds, such as stringed instruments. SDMs are also the preferred choice for concert taping.

Although you can get a great sound with MANY combinations of mics/amps for acoustic guitar recording, it can be said that in 'general', a small condensor is preferred.

This is my personal acoustic guitar recording chain when finger picking;
An outstanding treated recording space; Taylor GC8 guitar; SM-81 mic on 12th fret; RME Micstasy Preamp; RME UFX Interface; Studio One Pro DAW; Fabfilter Pro-Q and Pro-C.

When I'm tracking background guitar, with emphasis on a strumming style, I sometimes swap the Micstasy for an ADL600.

Last edited by Netigy; 19th May 2011 at 04:14 AM.. Reason: Added my acoustic guitar recording chain...
Old 19th May 2011 | Show parent
  #110
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gwailoh's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Studio Addict ➑️
I previously wrote:

"By the end of this thread (like in every other "what's best" thread), every known mic and pre will be mentioned, so that obviously means there is no "right" or "best" one. Just turn the knobs til it sounds good and move on."

So here, original poster, are the pieces you should use culled from this thread:


PRES:

Great River MP2NV
NPNG DMP 2NW
X2 Purple Biz MK
Dav BG
610
Chandler LTD-1
GML
neve 1073 (or 84)
Chandler TG2
Pacifica
Prism Orpheus
John Hardy
API
Avalon 737
Buzz Audio MA2.2 TX
Aurora Audio GTQ2 mkII
Focusrite ISA430 Producer Pack
CraneSong Flamingo
Grace Design M201
Focusrite Red 6
Qes Labs Preq-1
Millennia HV-3D
FM Acoustics M1
Forssell SMP-2
Audio Upgrades High Speed
V76
Chandler Germ

MICS:

MFG KM69 Pair
Royer SF12
Josephson C42 MP
AT 4050
Oktava 012
JM-130
AKG 414 B-ULS
Beyer M201
MD-441
KM84
neumann u87
telefunken u47
avalon 737
Beyer Dynamic MC930
KM140
Neumann KM54
C460b
AT4051
Schoeps
Km140
AKG C451
KM184
AT 4033
U67
tlm 103
Dude, check it out. More than two years later and they're not done yet.
Old 19th May 2011 | Show parent
  #111
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toneguru's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
I'm a mic pre freak but when it comes to acoustic guitar, the meat of the sound is from the mic and the placement. Much more so than with practically any other application that comes to mind.

I usually go for a KM54. This mic properly positioned (to the 1/8th inch) is almost always the trick. Try many different axis points too.

Also a good ribbon if its more of a singer songwriter sound with an open mix.

The pre should often be used to compliment with the mix in mind as much as the track.

What I am saying could apply to any instrument or voice in the studio but I feel for acoustic guitar it is true even more so.

If you want it to cut thru a mix try a 1081 or 312 and if you want it to be silky try a V76 and if you want it to be full and less harsh try a 1073.

I believe you said "price is no object" so get your hands on a really good KM54 and your problems will be far and few between for almost any acoustic instrument.
Old 19th May 2011 | Show parent
  #112
Gear Maniac
 
Tanio's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by M.o.T.s ➑️
Looks nice!
Do you have some clip to illustrate?
You may want to check this thread.
Old 19th May 2011 | Show parent
  #113
Lives for gear
 
YOHAMI's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Chandler TG2 preamp + Manley Ref Cardioid microphone

Portico II chanelstrip looks cool too
Old 19th May 2011 | Show parent
  #114
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by gwailoh ➑️
Dude, check it out. More than two years later and they're not done yet.
Thanks for the heads up!

Yeah, there is no one correct answer. Everything will work for everybody all the time. Just twiddle knobs and/or move mics.
Old 19th May 2011 | Show parent
  #115
Lives for gear
 
massimo's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
While for some reason it doesn't get much love here, I'd still recommend the Millennia HV3- a classic which I have used for 10+ years and regret having sold to pay bills. Coupled with Schoeps microphones (CMC5 in my case) it gives stunning results, at least with acoustic instruments (my experience). Then there is personal taste, for sure, but you really cannot go wrong with those. I can see why people call them "clinical" - they are mercyless - but you can always bend the sound after the fact, no? Or, like I used to do when I felt I needed a little more spice, you can put some tube device after it, just letting the signal go through- no action. I used my Pendulum OCL2 compressor set for zero action for that task.

best regards
Massimo
Old 19th May 2011 | Show parent
  #116
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
i wouldnt spend too much time with preamps honestly. just get a good one. mics, room and instrument are so much more important when it comes to acoustic instruments. but as i said...you still need a good one.
Old 19th May 2011 | Show parent
  #117
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Studio Addict ➑️
Whatever you have. What a stupid question.

By the end of this thread (like in every other "what's best" thread), every known mic and pre will be mentioned, so that obviously means there is no "right" or "best" one. Just turn the knobs til it sounds good and move on.

Well, this guy pretty much predicted the outcome.... two years ago. The thread went long enough for someone to actually recommend the pre the OP already has.
Old 19th May 2011
  #118
Gear Head
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
I tend to stick with a u87 or m149 into a Manley mono/Neve 1073 with the smallest kiss of compression from a TT CL1B.

There are more miking options than you can shake a stick at... But nothing beats a great guitarist-one mic and exact double takes.

If they are not a proficient guitarist I stick to a simple MS or blumlein set up.

If you want to use stereo miking to it's fullest with very minimal phase I suggest you get something handheld that makes sound. Switch the phase on one of the mics in the stereo pair...mess around with the spacing and your speaker with headphones on. Find the correct position where the signal cancels out. of course... It goes without saying... The guitarist needs to have positional discipline.
Old 19th May 2011 | Show parent
  #119
Lives for gear
 
NoEgo's Avatar
 
4 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geese ➑️
Well, this guy pretty much predicted the outcome.... two years ago. The thread went long enough for someone to actually recommend the pre the OP already has.
Welcome to Gearslutz

Besides people like to talk about stuff then so be it right. I noticed you took the time to post your comment.

Just sayin......no big deal. We all know there is no best pre in any scenario though, but it's always cool to see what others are using. That's why I started reading this thread that came back to life. I guess if the OP asked what mic pre/mic combo are you using these days...it would have been better....How about you? What do you use Geese?
Old 21st May 2011 | Show parent
  #120
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoEgo ➑️
Welcome to Gearslutz

Besides people like to talk about stuff then so be it right. I noticed you took the time to post your comment.

Just sayin......no big deal. We all know there is no best pre in any scenario though, but it's always cool to see what others are using. That's why I started reading this thread that came back to life. I guess if the OP asked what mic pre/mic combo are you using these days...it would have been better....How about you? What do you use Geese?

OK, yes you are right. GS does serve it's purpose, and yes I did read some and respond....mainly to quote the "prophetic" post two years ago and the irony of many responding without even paying attention to the OP's info. As for myself, Aurora Gt2Q, API3124, 4 x UA 610, and Hamptone HJFP2. I rent classic vintage pre's often. I also feel that just as the two year old quote said that any decent pre is fine in getting a good acoustic sound. Cheers.
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